Monday, April 04, 2016

The Greedy One Percent and the Moral Message of Bernie Sanders

I remember seeing a lot of signs like those  during the heady days of the Occupy movement.

Back in the days when everything seemed possible, and it looked like the beginning of a revolution.

But of course it didn't happen, the movement was brutally put down, and seemed to fade away. Even as the rich grew richer, and the poor grew poorer.

But you can't kill an idea or a movement whose time has come. 

And the Occupy dreamers were right, capitalism doesn't work.

It's too corrupt, and the one percent are too greedy.

The financial secrets of heads of state, athletes, billionaires and drug lords have been exposed in the latest — and biggest ever — leak of records from an offshore tax haven.

The records, dating as far back as 1977, come from a little-known but highly influential Panama-based law firm called Mossack Fonseca, which has 500 staff working in 40-plus countries. The firm is one of the world's top creators of shell companies — corporate structures that can be used to hide ownership of assets.

And too shameless...

But while the corporate media is making Vladimir Putin and his friends the big story. 

By showing how they were able to hide a billion dollars...

I'm more interested in these high-income earners.

Among the leaked records is info on the offshore assets of several hundred Canadians, including lawyers, mining and oil executives, business people and even known fraudsters.

As well as all those other wealthy Canadians who are allowed to stash away their billions in offshore tax havens, aided and abetted by our big banks. 

And by governments like Stephen Harper's corrupt hog regime...

That reduced the number of tax inspectors at Revenue Canada, to make it easier for the rich to shelter or hide their money.

Because that's a large part of the reason why there is never enough money to fix our crumbling cities. Never enough money to properly care for the old and the sick.

Never enough money to fight poverty and hunger...

And the worse thing is that although tens of thousands of Canadians are going to bed hungry. 

You can't keep those hogs out of the trough...

They just can't help themselves, greed is their god. They haven't a trace of morality, or an ounce of human decency.

Which is why I give thanks for Bernie Sander's moral message...

For Sanders is right, we need a peaceful democratic revolution, to save ourselves and the planet from total destruction.

And this sad young woman at the Toronto Occupy camp, on the day it was demolished, was also right...

If we want a kinder, gentler world we will have to fight for it.

The greedy rich are out of control.

And change is coming...

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  1. Not shocked at all by the revelations but the fact someone leaked this out. I, too, am curious about the 1% who has been using these tax havens.

    You would think that all those generous tax cuts geared towards the 1% would reduce off shore tax havens... LOL.

    1. hi it's no surprise, and there have been a lot of reports about how our millionaires are stashing their loot all over the caribbean, or on the Isle of Wight. But yes, between Putin's friends and all those other mobsters, If I was the one who leaked those papers I's be looking for a safe haven somewhere deep in the Amazon jungle... ;)

  2. “I WANT MY FAIR SHARE, AND THAT IS ALL OF IT !” Charles Koch of Koch Bros.

    1. hi hinofan....yes the Koch brothers, who would like their fair share of Canadai.e. the province of Alberta. It's interesting that Corey Lewandowski, Trump's campaign manager, once worked for them. But even they found him a little too crude and he was forced to leave under a cloud. Which tells you he must be a REALLY bad guy... ;)

  3. Here is an interesting look at how many American workers are making well less than a living wage:

    While the number of Americans who have become employed since the end of the Great Recession has improved, more than one-third of U.S. workers are employed in very poorly paying industries.

    1. hi political junkie...yes, and that's what accounts for the anger and the hope fuelling both Bernie Sander's and to a large degree Trump's campaign. I've been amazed by the amount of crossover between the two groups of supporters. And what I worry about is that the Democrats may choose Hillary, when Bernie is a better bet to win the general election...

  4. Anonymous9:25 AM

    Makes one wonder if we'll see any "Mossack Fonseca" and Unaoil connections?

    UNAOIL: The Company that Bribed the World

    1. hi anon...thanks for that link. It really is appalling how advanced the state of corruption has become. Capitalism is rotting from the head down, like a fish, and sooner or later something has got to give...

  5. Anonymous9:55 AM

    Yes Dan, not surprised by news, but am amazed by the leak. With all of that money, someone with a moral compass...

    As I've said before Simon, I really like last photo you took at Occupy Toronto.


    1. hi TS...I'm glad you like that photo. I took quite a few during my days at the camp, but that's my favourite. It captures a moment when we were both frozen (and it was cold, staring at each other and needing no words to express how we both felt. Although I do have some good ones of the many marches I joined, and will have to dig them up to remind me that what seemed like a dream could very well become reality ...

  6. Anonymous11:08 AM

    Coincidentally enough, as it were, the preponderance of the "bad guys" listed in that "leak" were NOT the western 1%'ers but rather the "axis of evil" guys from the Middle-East/Russia/Far East because, as we all know, nobody from our pals in Europe or here in the western hemisphere would ever do anything that covert or nefarious as to purposely not pay honestly owed taxes, right? (smirk-smirk, wink-wink) Rumor has it anyway that it was a contrived "leak" set up by the happy guys to our south to try and discredit the very guys that are kicking the shit out of their petro dollars on the open world currency markets.

    Segue: A great rob ford article!

    1. hi anon....yes that's true, but hopefully we will get more information on all the others, including the 350 Canadians, and can embarrass the hell out of them all. As for the Keenan article, I saw it and yes, that too needed to be said. The man was always toxic and long before he became mayor. For who can forget how he demanded that crack addicts should not be treated, but go straight to jail? And thank goodness that nightmare is over....

  7. Yes, I was disappointed in the Guardian. BOTH the Russian and Ukranian leaders are involved, but so is Dave Cameron's family and a host of important capitalists and political figures from the wealthiest countries.

    1. hi lagatta....yes I see Dave's Dad has been up to no good. What is the old saying? The fruit never falls too far from the tree. None of this is a surprise of course, but hopefully it will provide people like Sanders even more ammunition, to use against the bankers and the billionaires....

  8. Anonymous12:07 PM

    We definitely have an income problem. Harper cut revenues by some $ 44 billion a year and it did nothing but impoverish this Country. I hope Trudeau has the guts for some serious and badly needed reforms, and that he doesn't just turn out to be a friendly neocon.

    1. hi anon...Our main problem is a revenue problem not a spending one, thanks to stephen Harper's never ending attempts to kill government by crating a permanent statutory deficit. As for Justin I'm hoping for the best. After the long nightmare we went through, and like Bernie's supporters, I too want a future to believe in. As somebody pointed out recently, Trudeau is far more complex than he has been given credit for, and he is constantly underestimated, so who knows he may really surprise us. And he has definitely started off in the right direction....