Tuesday, April 02, 2013

oligarchs among the journals

Via Atrios, Dean Baker reports from the intersection of politics and economics:

There are few areas where the corruption of the national media is more apparent than in its treatment of Social Security. Most of the elite media have made it clear in both their opinion and news pages that they want to see benefits cut. In keeping with this position they highlight the views of political figures who push cuts to the program, treating them as responsible, while those who oppose cuts are ignored or mocked.

This pattern of coverage was clearly on display last weekend. Both the New York Times and Washington Post decided to ignore the Senate's passage by voice vote of the Sanders Amendment. This was an amendment to the budget put forward by Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders that puts the Senate on record as opposing the switch to the chained CPI as the basis for the annual Social Security cost of living adjustment (COLA).

Switching the basis for the COLA to the chained CPI is one of the most beloved policies of the Washington elite. The idea is that it would reduce scheduled benefits for retirees by 0.3 percentage points annually.

That about says it all, except, like Atrios, I would replace the word "elite" with "oligarchy" wherever it appears.

Because this raises the question -- begs the question, really -- whose country is this anyway? Who rules here? 

The US today is not a democracy, but an oligarchy, which intends to accrue all wealth and power to itself. Yet we have the legal means to take our country back from them, because by law this is a democratic republic. So when will we?

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