Here’s a breakdown of the $2T coronavirus bailout Reply

Pitiful.

New York Post

President Donald Trump signs the coronavirus stimulus relief package, in the Oval Office at the White House, Friday, March 27, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Trump on Friday signed a $2.2 trillion coronavirus rescue package as the pandemic devastates the nation’s economy, sickens more than 103,000 Americans and killed nearly 1,700 others.

“This will deliver urgently needed relief to our nation’s families, workers and businesses and that’s what this is all about,” Trump said as he signed the largest stimulus deal in U.S. history.

Here is a breakdown of this historic bailout:

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Washington quietly prepares a bank rescue — just in case Reply

Not a penny for the money-changers. Mutualize the banksters.

By Zachary Warmbrot

Politico

Tucked inside Congress’ $2 trillion economic rescue package for America is sweeping authority for the government to come to the aid of the one industry that has insisted it doesn’t need a bailout: the big banks.

Lenders that the government saved in the 2008 financial crisis have been touting the strength of their balance sheets heading into the coronavirus pandemic. But Congress is backstopping them anyway with a provision in the bill that would give the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. power to guarantee checking accounts beyond the $250,000 in deposit insurance that it now offers bank customers.

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As Coronavirus Cases Mount, So Do Concerns About Price-Gouging and Corporate Profiteering Reply

It’s time to syndicalize the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries.

By Jessica Corbett

Common Dreams

As the number of global COVID-19 cases soared past 254,000 and the death toll topped 10,000 on Friday, concerns persisted—particularly in the United States—about healthcare costs related to the ongoing outbreak, limited testing and protective medical supplies, and how corporations may try to cash in on the public health crisis.

The Intercept‘s Naomi Klein, author of the 2007 book The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, warned earlier this week in a video about “coronavirus capitalism” that the U.S. and other governments are “exploiting” the COVID-19 pandemic “to push for no-strings-attached corporate bailouts and regulatory rollbacks.”

Klein took to Twitter Friday to highlight a New York Times report about how—although President Donald Trump on Wednesday signed legislation that orders free testing for COVID-19—even people with health insurance could face high medical bills, which experts worry will deterring people from seeking treatment.

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Burger King UK won’t pay rent, will pay employees instead Reply

Burger King places Passover blood on its doorposts?

By Grace Perry

The Takeout

Burger King? More like Burger Reasonable Distributor Of Capital to the Working Class. Burger King UK announced this week that it won’t be paying their quarterly rent checks, instead using that cash to keep its employees paid. CEO Alisdair Murdoch didn’t mince words when he told BBC Radio’s Today show about his plans: “We are not intending to pay our rent.” Okay, Alisdair! Noted!

On Monday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson issued stay-at-home orders to the British Isles, similar to what we’re experiencing in the States. Though restaurants can still do takeout and delivery, Burger King is shuttering stores for the duration of the lockdown. The CEO of the British chain Yo! Sushi (what?) made the same choice as the Burger King, telling The Financial Times that not paying rent is “not really a choice. It’s just a basic piece of economics.” Teach me about economics, Yo! Sushi guy!

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A Reminder of Why I am an Anarchist 1

The current public health/economic crisis is definitely a reminder of why I am an anarchist. Thus far, the responses to the situation by the various factions of the state/ruling class/power elite have been as follows:

Republicans: “The ruling class is suffering. Let’s bail them out! Maybe give a little bit of stuff to the peasants as well so they don’t pitchfork us.”

Neoliberals: “Let’s see if we can be even bigger scumbags that the Republicans! Aim high!”

Conventional Democrats: “We can use this bailout thing to get some more loot for our preferred categories of parasites!”

Libertarians: “Do nothing! Let the state-corporate economy take care of it. That’s how the free market works!

Leftists: “Expand the welfare state! Nationalize the means of production! New Class Uber Alles!”

As I have said before, the appropriate anarchist response to this situation is to initiate a debt strike (i.e. no more payments to state-supported institutions, e.g. banks, corporations, landlords, universities, utility companies, medical-industrial-complex, etc.) and demand reparations from the state/ruling class (i.e. reclamation/liberation of previously looted resources).

And we don’t want just forty acres and a mule. We want the whole damn plantation.

Will coronavirus kill America’s economy? Murray Sabrin explains. Reply

A relevant quote from the comments thread:

“Capitalism requires the State in order to operate. The modern state has been reconfigured to serve neoliberal needs. Also the govt is not a household, it is the Bill Gates of the economy . When the govt cuts spending it impacts spending in the private economy. Plus the financialisation of the economy means Capital is free to operate outside borders & is not required to invest in its country of origin. Tax cuts benefit owners of Capital. There is no guarantee that they will invest domestically.”

Federal student loan payments to be suspended for six months Reply

Jubilee! Jubilee!

By Tal Axelrod

The Hill

A measure that will suspend federal student loan payments for six months is part of the sweeping coronavirus stimulus package that President Trump signed into law Friday afternoon.

As part of the legislation intended to blunt the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic, the measure mandates that lenders cease all payments on the loans through the end of September.

Interest will not accrue and non-payment will not impact credit scores in the interim period.

The law also requires lenders to alert borrowers that the payments have been suspended within 15 days of the bill’s signing and resume alerts on August 1 that the payments will resume.

People still can choose to pay down the principal on their loans over the next six months.

Private student loans, which account for roughly 12 percent of all education loans in 2018-2019, according to the College Board, are not impacted by the law.

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Almost one in four Americans lost job or furloughed because of coronavirus, poll finds Reply

Great Depression Two.

By Chris Kahn

Reuters

Nearly one in four U.S. adults said they have been laid off or furloughed during the coronavirus outbreak, yet a bipartisan majority of Americans wants businesses to remain closed to slow the spread of the deadly virus despite its impact on the economy, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll.

The March 26-27 opinion poll, released Friday, also showed that the public is much more likely to heed the advice of doctors and local government officials than President Donald Trump.

Trump, who predicted in February that the virus would quickly disappear “like a miracle,” has communicated an uneven level of concern for the disease, which has infected more than 85,000 people in the United States and killed more than 1,200.

The president took a hardline approach earlier this month when he urged people to gather only in small groups. Later he appeared to change course, telling reporters that he would like businesses to reopen by Easter, on April 12.

The poll showed that most Americans do not want that.

Eighty-one percent said the country should continue social distancing initiatives, including “shelter at home” orders, “despite the impact to the economy.” This includes 89% of Democrats and 70% of Republicans.

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Pause 8 bill payments if you’ve lost work during the coronavirus Reply

Jubilee! Jubilee! “Hell, no, we won’t pay!”

By Laura Grace Tarpley

Business Insider

Many employees are out of work or facing reduced hours as US businesses temporarily close to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Lenders are empathizing with people who are struggling to pay their bills during the pandemic.

If you reach out to companies, you may be able to pause any of these eight bills – and make life a little less stressful during the outbreak.

1. Memberships and subscriptions

It may seem like we’re beating a dead horse by recommending you cancel memberships and subscriptions to save money. But while people might normally tell you to cut out frivolous expenses like streaming services, that’s not necessarily the best move here.

After all, you’re going to be spending a lot of time at home. Is now really the time to delete your Netflix account?

Instead, think about expenses that will no longer be relevant while you’re self-isolating. If your gym is closed indefinitely, pause your monthly payments. If you’re a season ticket holder to an amusement park that has closed or for a sports team whose season has been canceled, call the ticket office to discuss cancellation.

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The Wall Street Trilogy: A History Reply

The global banking cartels have been the international ruling class since the early modern era when landed wealth began to give way to monetary and merchant wealth as the basis of class rule. The old bourgeoisie of the Enlightenment/classical liberal/Industrial Revolution periods were simply the national-elites of capitalist countries during the rise of modernity. When classical capitalism collapsed in the early to middle 20th century (as Marx more or less predicted), the managerial revolution emerged to replace the old bourgeoisie as the new national-elites, while remaining subordinate to the international financier/rentier class. The state-centric movements (fascism, national socialism, communism, social democracy, Fabianism, progressivism) that comprised the managerial revolution in different industrialized countries (Italy, Germany, Russia, England, America, Japan, etc.) represented cooptations of various elitist-reformist and/or revolutionary-extremist forces for the purpose of saving the global financial system. Antony Sutton was run out of academic and respectable “conservative” circles for pointing this out.

Available at Amazon.

Now available for the first time in one volume: Three of the most revealing studies showing how Wall Street financiers, international bankers, and corporations manipulated world affairs during the early 20th century. Original introduction by Global Alliance Publications, Inc. summarizes the powerful book series. In this trilogy, Professor Anthony C. Sutton presents extensive research tracing the support and financial backing of world-changing events by Wall Street including the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, Franklin Delano Roosevelt s presidency, Hitler s rise to power, World War II and the beginnings of corporate socialism. Wall Street and the Bolshevik Revolution Learn how major corporations made deals to capture huge Russian markets over a decade before the U.S. even recognized the Soviet regime. And, how closet socialism permeated the top levels of business only to later expand across many facets of society under the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt, all to benefit the interests of Wall Street. Wall Street and FDR Other histories gloss over Franklin Delano Roosevelt s years on Wall Street, but Sutton reveals his destructive speculation, behind the scenes use of political influence for profit, and the corporations and elite businessmen who made his rise to the Presidency possible. Wall Street and the Rise of Hitler Hitler rose to power through subsidies by international bankers and Wall Street financiers. Sutton presents original documents and eyewitness accounts to show how World War II was well-planned and extremely profitable for top financial insiders. Read how the directors and executives of J.P. Morgan, General Electric, Standard Oil, International Telephone and Telegraph, Chase and Manhattan banks and many other members of the business elite all played a role in financing and promoting one of the most destructive wars in history. Throughout the 20th century, bankers and executives from institutions even more relevant today, including Morgan banking, used their resources to shape the global structure of events in order to maximize profit and maintain their level of world influence. Given that these companies still exert influence in our political system and our society as a whole, Professor Sutton s conclusions are just as relevant today as they were when he originally published his findings.

Wall Street and FDR 3

Given that “progressives” are once again a rising force in US politics, it’s a good idea to revisit the work of Antony Sutton and his critique of FDR. Bernie Sanders is really just a recycled Rooseveltian, and I’ve even heard a lot of commentators I like (Jimmie Dore, Kim Iversen, Caleb Maupin) calling for a new Roosevelt in this time of Great Depression-era class divisions and, with the present crisis, a possible Great Depression Two. FDR was not a hero who saved the working class from the Depression. He was a tool of the banksters who saved the ruling class from the working class.

Available from Goodreads.

1337429

Franklin D. Roosevelt is frequently described as one of the greatest presidents in American history, remembered for his leadership during the Great Depression and Second World War. Antony Sutton challenges this received wisdom, presenting a controversial but convincing analysis. Based on an extensive study of original documents, he concludes that: * FDR was an elitist who influenced public policy in order to benefit special interests, including his own. * FDR and his Wall Street colleagues were ‘corporate socialists’, who believed in making society work for their own benefit. * FDR believed in business but not free market economics. Sutton describes the genesis of ‘corporate socialism’ – acquiring monopolies by means of political influence – which he characterises as ‘making society work for the few’. He traces the historical links of the Delano and Roosevelt families to Wall Street, as well as FDR’s own political networks developed during his early career as a financial speculator and bond dealer. The New Deal almost destroyed free enterprise in America, but didn’t adversely affect FDR’s circle of old friends ensconced in select financial institutions and federal regulatory agencies. Together with their corporate allies, this elite group profited from the decrees and programmes generated by their old pal in the White House, whilst thousands of small businesses suffered and millions were unemployed. Wall Street and FDR is much more than a fascinating historical and political study. Many contemporary parallels can be drawn to Sutton’s powerful presentation given the recent banking crises and worldwide governments’ bolstering of private institutions via the public purse.

The War within the Democratic Party: The Managerial Elite vs. the New Class? Reply

Anyone who is familiar with my writings knows that I am a vengeful hater of the neocons. However, one thing the neocon godfather Irving Kristol (father of Bill Kristol, of “benevolent global hegemony” scumbaggery fame) may have gotten right is his analysis of what the called the “new class.” Kristol was an opponent of James Burham’s managerial revolution theory (because as a Trotskyist-turned-right-wing social democrat Kristol was a fan of the FDR-era managerial revolution) but advanced the view that the Great Society/New Left-era produced a “new class” (which the uber-Zionist, Russia-hating socially conservative Kristol despised) that was an insurgent force within the US state. I actually think there is something to be said for Kristol’s perspective on the new class. But I would be inclined to argue that Burnham was correct in his assessment of the managerial revolution’s dethronement of the old bourgeoise, with the new class subsequently being an insurgency within the lower strata of the managerial elite. The present-day battle between neoliberals (overlords of the managerial apparatus) and social democrats (administrators of the managerial apparatus) makes a lof sense when viewed in this context. Dan McCarthy explains Kristol’s theory in the article below.

By Daniel McCarthy

The American Conservative

Shock gave way to relief this summer as America’s political establishment—rattled by Donald Trump’s success in winning the Republican nomination—reassured itself of his inevitable defeat come November. For a moment Trump seemed to have created a new style of politics, one that threatened to mobilize working-class voters against the establishment in both parties. But in the weeks following the Democratic National Convention, as Hillary Clinton’s poll numbers remained comfortably ahead of Trump’s, pundits discounted the risk of class war.

Trump’s voters were not really so hard hit anyway, a report by Gallup claimed. “His supporters are less educated and more likely to work in blue collar occupations,” wrote Jonathan Rothwell, a senior economist at the polling firm, “but they earn relative[ly] high household incomes, and living in areas more exposed to trade or immigration does not increase Trump support.” Trump’s voters were most strongly characterized by their “racial isolation”: they live in places with little ethnic diversity. Thus race, not class, explains the 2016 election—or so outlets like Vox and the Washington Post concluded.

But there’s another side to the Trump phenomenon that is less about Trump or his voters than about the elites they are against. Resistance to the bipartisan establishment keeps growing, and even if Trump loses to Clinton in a landslide, he has carried the rebellion further than ever before by winning a major party’s nomination.

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