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Raise Taxes on Rich to Reward True Job Creators

tax the rich
© Unknown
It is a tenet of American economic beliefs, and an article of faith for Republicans that is seldom contested by Democrats: If taxes are raised on the rich, job creation will stop.

Trouble is, sometimes the things that we know to be true are dead wrong. For the larger part of human history, for example, people were sure that the sun circles the Earth and that we are at the center of the universe. It doesn't, and we aren't. The conventional wisdom that the rich and businesses are our nation's "job creators" is every bit as false.

I'm a very rich person. As an entrepreneur and venture capitalist, I've started or helped get off the ground dozens of companies in industries including manufacturing, retail, medical services, the Internet and software. I founded the Internet media company aQuantive Inc., which was acquired by Microsoft Corp. in 2007 for $6.4 billion. I was also the first non-family investor in Inc.

Even so, I've never been a "job creator." I can start a business based on a great idea, and initially hire dozens or hundreds of people. But if no one can afford to buy what I have to sell, my business will soon fail and all those jobs will evaporate.

That's why I can say with confidence that rich people don't create jobs, nor do businesses, large or small. What does lead to more employment is the feedback loop between customers and businesses. And only consumers can set in motion a virtuous cycle that allows companies to survive and thrive and business owners to hire. An ordinary middle-class consumer is far more of a job creator than I ever have been or ever will be.


General Strike Rocks Nation: Workers Across Britain Confront Conservative Austerity Demands

Public workers prepare to march
© Linn Washington Jr.Public workers prepare to march through Central London in Wednesday's UK General Strike.
Standing on a picket line in front of her work place at a world renowned heart-lung hospital in London wasn't Jeanette Anderson's first choice for how to spend her day.

However, Anderson said protesting was her "only choice."

Protesting as part of a nationwide general strike in the UK, Anderson said, was necessary to combat austerity measures from Britain's conservative led government that now targets the pensions of public sector workers like Anderson and her picket line colleagues at the Royal Brompton Hospital in this city's up-scale Chelsea section.

"We do not get the fat-cat pensions like the rich," Anderson said, noting that participating in the one-day strike action wasn't something she took lightly.

"Public sector workers are already into a two-year pay freeze and now the government plans to extend that pay freeze for another two years."

Arrow Down

War On Drugs Is A Hoax - US military Admits to Guarding, Assisting Lucrative Opium Trade in Afghanistan

Afghanistan is, by far, the largest grower and exporter of opium in the world today, cultivating a 92 percent market share of the global opium trade. But what may shock many is the fact that the US military has been specifically tasked with guarding Afghan poppy fields, from which opium is derived, in order to protect this multibillion dollar industry that enriches Wall Street, the CIA, MI6, and various other groups that profit big time from this illicit drug trade scheme.

Prior to the tragic events of September 11, 2001, Afghanistan was hardly even a world player in growing poppy, which is used to produce both illegal heroin and pharmaceutical-grade morphine. In fact, the Taliban had been actively destroying poppy fields as part of an effort to rid the country of this harmful plant, as was reported by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on February 16, 2001, in a piece entitled Nation's opium production virtually wiped out.

But after 9/11, the US military-industrial complex quickly invaded Afghanistan and began facilitating the reinstatement of the country's poppy industry. According to the United Nations Drug Control Program (UNDCP), opium cultivation increased by 657 percent in 2002 after the US military invaded the country under the direction of then-President George W. Bush.

Black Cat

US: Priest Booked into Sacramento Jail on Suspicion of Child Molestation

© Lezlie SterlingFather Uriel Ojeda meets with members of the community at his parish in Woodland on May 22, 2009.
The Rev. Uriel Ojeda, a young priest lauded for his work in the community and for his aid to the poor, faces arraignment Friday in a Sacramento courtroom on multiple counts of molesting a 14-year-old girl.

The 32-year-old priest surrendered to authorities Wednesday night after members of the Diocese traveled to Redding and brought him back to Sacramento.

He is being held in the county jail in lieu of $5 million bail.


Moms Multitask More Than Dads, Enjoy it Less

Multitasking Mum
© Monkey Business Images / ShutterstockMothers multitask in the home 10 hours a week more than fathers.
The stereotype of the busy working mom divvying up her energy between kids, husband and housework is at least partially true, according to new research that finds that not only do mothers multitask more than fathers, they're less happy doing so.

The study, published today (Dec. 1) in the journal American Sociological Review, finds that working mothers spend about 10 hours a week more multitasking than do working fathers. While dads are more engaged than ever in home life, the research reveals that moms still shoulder a heavier burden, said study researcher Barbara Schneider, a sociologist at Michigan State University.

"Moms today who work full time basically have to worry about working full time and being a mom and a spouse," Schneider said. "It makes it very difficult."

Monkey Wrench

Factories Stalling Worldwide

A factory in Greece.
© n/aAn abandoned factory in Greece.
Manufacturing activity is contracting across Europe and most of Asia, data showed on Thursday, and a Chinese official declared that the world economy faces a worse situation than in 2008 when Lehman Brothers collapsed.

Factory activity shrank even further in the euro zone, reinforcing the view that the debt-strapped region is in recession, while British manufacturing contracted at the fastest pace in two years, raising the risk the UK economy may suffer the same fate.

This has been the case for much of the developed world for several months, with the exception of pockets of better news from the United States. But the slowdown now appears to be spreading to economic powerhouses of the developing world.

China's official purchasing managers' index (PMI) showed factory activity shrank in November for the first time in nearly three years, while a similar PMI showed Indian factory growth slowed close to stall speed.

Star of David

Palestine: Stories from the Old City: 'We Are Not Living Like Human Beings'

© n/a
At the top of a steep and ramshackle street in the Palestinian neighbourhood of Silwan, a rusty, battered gate opens into an unremarkable house. Less than a quarter mile away, though, stand the Al Aqsa mosque and the Wailing Wall, two of Jerusalem's most venerated holy sites, making it a very attractive piece of real estate indeed.

For Mohammed Sumarin, 52, whose late uncle owned this house, this is home. He was born here, raised here, and has never lived anywhere else. But now he faces losing his home of more than half a century to the Jewish National Fund (JNF), an Israeli charity that claims the house for its own and is battling to evict the family.

Silwan, sprawled along the southern flank of Jerusalem's Old City, is the politically sensitive epicentre of the struggle for East Jerusalem, coveted by Palestinians as the capital of their future state, and claimed by Israel, which annexed the eastern sector after the 1967 Six Day War, as an integral part of an undivided Jerusalem.

The evictions and demolitions of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem are widely seen as deliberately aiding Israeli settlers in staking the Jewish claim to the eastern part of the city to thwart a final peace agreement that could cleave the city in two.


US: Mom who fatally stabbed girl, 4, told neighbors she was possessed by demons

carulus hines
Carulus Hines Shot to Death by Police After Found Repeatedly Stabbing Daughter (Facebook)

Many in the Carver Hills neighborhood knew Ms. Carulus Hines and her children had no water and were on the brink of being homeless.

They knew the woman claimed to speak to her dead dad and said she was possessed by demons.

Still no one expected what happened Monday afternoon in the green and yellow home on Abner Place.


US: Lingering joblessness taxes nation's food banks

© PhilabundancePhilabundance's Community Food Center, which serves 450 cupboards and pantries throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey, has seen a 26 percent spike in need this year and now serves food for about 65,000 people weekly.
The face of hunger in America is changing. It's a little more ex-middle class, a little more desperate and there are a lot more mouths to feed, people who run the nation's food banks say.

"We're seeing a lot more families, many who are running out of money and benefits because of long-term unemployment," said Bill Clark, executive director of food bank Philabundance. "Since 2007, the changing face of hunger has been influenced a lot by unemployment."

Clark doesn't put much credence in the monthly fluctuations in employment data from the government. Every day he sees how the long-term jobless are struggling to meet basic needs.

The food bank, which serves 450 cupboards and pantries throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey, has seen a 26 percent spike in need this year and now serves food for about 65,000 people weekly.

On Friday, the Labor Department will release employment data for November. In October, employers added 80,000 jobs, offering a glimmer of hope for the beleaguered employment market.

Comment: What can US citizens do when their hands are tied, not only by unemployment, but direct Government intervention?
US: Having More Than 7 Days Of Food Makes You A Suspected Terrorist

What the Bureau of Labor Statistics do not have an account of (or is willing to share) is the number of people who've lost unemployment benefits.
US Social Crisis: 25 Million Unemployed and Underemployed

Eye 1

US: Police officers shoot woman stabbing her child

police tape
Police officers shot and killed a woman in an Atlanta home when she didnโ€™t comply with orders to stop stabbing her young daughter, who also died, authorities said.

Police officers shot and killed a woman in an Atlanta home when she didn't comply with orders to stop stabbing her young daughter, who also died, authorities said Monday.

Police and fire rescue personnel were called to the home Monday afternoon and were told an 8-year-old boy had been assaulted by his mother and thrown out a window, said an Atlanta Police spokesman, Maj. Keith Meadows.

Meadows said witnesses told officers the mother was alone inside the home with her young daughter. He said officers entered the house and found the mother sitting in a chair, stabbing the child.

Two officers drew their service weapons and ordered the woman to drop a knife, firing at her when she did not comply, Meadows said. He said between 10 and 16 shots were fired.