Monday, June 18, 2012

Update:#OWS Tax Wall St. Kicks Off And Sheriff Arpaio Defies Obama On Immigration Meanwhile Obama Continues War On Pot

#OWS update:

National Campaign to Tax Wall St. Kicks Off in 15 Cities Tomorrow -- Join In! by By Alyssa Figueroa | Sourced from AlterNet June 18, 2012

Americans will rally in 15 cities across the country at noon tomorrow to kickoff a national campaign to establish a Wall Street tax that would generate billions for the public good. This Financial Transaction Tax, called the "Robin Hood Tax," is a levy of less than half of a percent on trades in derivatives, stocks, bonds and foreign currencies. According to the campaign, economists estimate that $350 billion could be raised each year for health care, jobs, education, infrastructure and various other needs, which may help rejuvenate the economy. The campaign states that it is pushing for “a tax for the people.”

These Robin Hood Tax events will take place in front of JPMorgan Chase branches because of its recent $2 billion loss from a risky hedge investment. According to the campaign, it is “the latest bank to have the spotlight shone on their reckless behavior that has hurt millions.” A Robin Hood Tax event will also take place in Rio de Janeiro tomorrow at the Rio +20 international conference on climate change.

Though within the last few months the campaign started reaching the United States, it has been pushed in more than 40 countries over the last two years. Several countries, including the UK, China, Brazil and India have already implemented this tax, while France and Germany have aimed to implement it by 2013.

The Robin Hood Tax idea has drawn a lot of support. Businesspeople like Bill Gates, George Soros and Warren Buffet support the tax along with economists Joseph Stilglitz and Paul Krugman. Political leaders such as Al Gore and President Regan's Budget Director David Stockman also endorsed it. It also has the support of the Vatican, Ban Ki-Moon, and a variety of other groups such as unions, nurses, AIDS activists and environmentalists.

Update : Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Arizona AKA "little Hitler"
Obama on immigration
Joe Arpaio refuses to cooperate with Obama in changing the way he treats young undocumented immigrants
arrest 6 year old undocumented immigrant

Obama's Two step One step forward two steps back
Obama changing tactics for cracking down on Marijuana
Meanwhile in the real world support for legalization has grown

Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio Arrests 6-Year-Old Undocumented Immigrant By Judd Legum at, on Jun 17, 2012

Joe Arpaio, the controversial Arizona Sheriff from Maricaopa County, arrested a 6-year-old undocumented immigrant on Friday. The move came the same day President Obama announced a new policy halting deportations for young undocumented immigrants.

...Immediately following the President’s announcement Arpaio told a local ABC affiliate that it would not impact his approach toward young undocumented immigrants. “They will still be arrested,” he said.

Update: Obama's War on Pot medical or otherwise - one wonders what constituency he is trying to appease with his draconian or more subtle attacks on Medical Marijuana and pot in general.

SUPPORT FOR MARIJUANA LEGALIZATION REACHES HISTORIC HIGH | New polling released by Gallup today finds that 50 percent of Americans now support marijuana legalization, while 46 percent of Americans oppose it. This support for legalizing marijuana is actually a record high, as Gallup illustrates in the following chart:

President Obama and the War on Drugs
The Young Turks: New Marijuana Crackdown Tactic By Obama Admin

Published on 17 Jun 2012 by TheYoungTurks
Rhode Island has decriminalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana. Meanwhile in California, Los Angeles federal prosecutors are filing asset-forfeiture lawsuits in a backdoor attempt to close medical cannabis dispensaries. Ana Kasparian and Cenk Uygur discuss President Obama's crackdown on The Young Turks.

and : Justice Department Targets Medical Marijuana Despite Increasing Support For Legalization by Tara Culp-Ressler at ThinkProgress via, June 15, 2012

Despite the fact that public support for medical marijuana is currently at all-time high, and may be legal in up to 24 states and the District of Columbia by the end of this year, the Department of Justice continues to crack down on medical marijuana on the federal level.

The DOJ has been targeting the landlords of medical marijuana shops in California as an indirect way to tamp down medical marijuana use. Although medical marijuana is legally under California state law, it is still illegal under federal law.

Federal prosecutors are pressuring landlords to either shut down their shops or risk losing their property under a civil statute originally designed to allow the government to seize drug-trafficking organizations’ assets. Greg Baldwin, a former federal prosecutor specializing in white-collar criminal defense, explains the logic behind the DOJ’s indirect approach:

BALDWIN: Filing asset-forfeiture lawsuits against these commercial properties is a very clever way to handle an otherwise horribly difficult and controversial situation. If you bring criminal charges against these medical marijuana businesses, the federal government gets pilloried in the press for attacking California law and sick people.

Although the DOJ is attempting a slick PR move, the intentions are clear. The Obama Administration has continued to restrict medical marijuana despite the fact that 3/4 of the American public believes the federal government should back off enforcement against medical marijuana in states where the drug is legalized. There’s a reason the federal government is worried about risking media attention for bringing criminal charges against medical marijuana shops, and it’s because it realizes the public is not on its side.

While moving to the right or at least keeping to the status quo on the issue of decriminalization of Marijuana and is moving backwards on the issue of medical marijuana. But on some issues Obama has come out fighting probably concerned about losing some of his constituents in the upcoming election.

But given Obama's four years of following most of the Cheney/Rove play book will these supposedly bold steps make much difference in Obama's chances of re-election. And if re-elected will Obama just fold once again when the GOP operatives go into attack mode. The long list of disappointing decisions by the Obama administration leaves a great deal to be desired. From ignoring the war crimes and treasonous actions of the thugs and liars of the former Bush administration . Before his inauguration he already proved he would never stand up to Israel or to the various dictators , despots who for whatever reason are considered America's allies from Saudi Arabia and Bahrain , Yemen , Burma . Not long after taking power one of Obama's boldest moves regrettably was helping to engineer a coup with the elite and their Military thugs against the popular and democratically elected President Zelaya of Honduras -shades of 1973 9/11 Allende and Pinochet of Chile ie replacing a populist reformer with another run of the mill blood thirsty American owned dictator.

Obama had in his power to make real changes to the status quo when the Corporations, banks , investment firms came knocking to feed from the trough of the over taxed average American worker while CEOs et al drunk on power and greed managed to increase their standard of living while telling the average citizen to tighten their belts.

Obama then to appease the American War industry stepped up the war in iraq and Afghanistan and Pakistan and Yemen followed by bullying NATO and other Western Nations into massive bombing of Libya all in order to be another bunch of war lords, thugs and Islamic extremist in power . Because of his actions and his administrations track record of producing an overwhelming Tsunami of Propaganda equal to that of the Cheney/Rove Junta that many progressives and others on the left which used to be "liberalism" have a hard time trusting Obama anymore than they would trust George W. Bush and slf-serving greedy blood-thirsty gang of ideologues and true believers who really believed they could re-write not just past history but the present and the future according to their meglomaniac whims.

So for those of us peering into the world of the the Heart and Soul of the American Empire one wonders would the re-election of Obama be that much better than the election of President Mitt Romney. Romney would unabashedly cut all the so-called fat from the government eliminating various Federal departments from Education, to the Department of the Environment or federal assistance for food-stamps to low cost housing for the poor to the FDA and just telling the citizenry they are on their own. In the uberconservative right-wing ideology combined with a right-wing theology of the 19th century laissez-faire capitalism and their hard-hearted Jesus no one no matter how low they get is going to offer any assistance except to berate those who lose their jobs, their homes , their savings , their credit because they are according to Mitt Romney's ideology and theology these poor souls are losers and merely as Hitler or was it Ayn Rand put it just "eaters" and not "producers" . Therefore the Eaters must be permitted to have their fate decided by God and not man and thereby reduce the surplus population of the less productive citizens .

Meanwhile Obama on certain issues some claim he has moved to the left ie immigration, same-sex marriage. As Cenk of The Young Turks might say "this is weak sauce" but it maybe enough for Obama to win re-election by a slim margin.

Obama Moves to the Left Ahead of General Election by David Atkins at Hullabaloo via, March 15, 2012

It's a truism in American politics that one governs and campaigns from the base, and then moves to the center for general election politics. We've seen it from Mitt Romney this cycle, and from both Republicans and Democrats in both previous election cycles.

Of course, President Obama doesn't have a significant primary from which to shift to the center. But it's remarkable that the President has been making shifts to the left on hot button from marriage equality to immigration in the approach to the general election. It's an extremely unusual phenomenon in the realm of Presidential politics, particularly on the left.

There are a few ways of looking at it. One is to cheer that the Left is increasing in power and political acceptance such that the President is able and willing to take bold positions. But it's also equally valid to be angry at the President for not taking these sorts of stands earlier.

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