The Watering Hole; Friday September 5 2014; Kochs, Fascism, and the Minimum Wage

Yesterdays Watering Hole post linked to a transcript of Mitch McConnell’s speech given at a June 2014 Koch Brothers-financed secret strategy conference of right wing financiers and various of their (present and future) bought-and-paid-for political errand boys. Today, news of another newly released audio from the same get-together, this one by Koch Industries vice president Richard Fink. The article briefly discusses Fink’s major premise:

After explaining that when he sees people on the streets, he tells them to “get off your ass and work hard like we did,” the man identified as Fink said that the culture of victimization is the ‘main recruitng ground for totalitarianism, for fascism, for conformism.” Raising the minimum wage, he claimed, would cost 500,000 people their jobs — a claim that has been disputed by some economists:

 FINK: We’re taking these 500,000 people that would’ve had a job and putting them unemployed, making dependence part of government programs, and destroying their opportunity for earned success. And so we see this as a very big part of recruitment in Germany in the twenties. When the Germans were crushed by World War I, the allies put a very strong settlement on that. They lost their meaning in life. And if you look at the rise and fall of the Third Reich … what happens is a fascist comes in and offers them an opportunity.
 
He added that similar patterns were seen in “Lenin and Stalin Russia” and Mao in China.”
 
In other words, raising the minimum wage for workers is . . . ummmm . . . a Nazi-Fascist-Marxist-Leninist-Communist-Maoist thingee!
 
Means I was dead wrong yesterday when I suggested that since, in Mussolini’s words, “Fascism . . . is the merger of state and corporate power”, therefore the Koch-financed “merger” of corporate money/power with Wingnut-government politics, including the purchase of Wingnut politicians by billionaires, heralds the advance toward an American-style Fascism, effectively to become the governing anti-common man policy of the emerging Oligarchy.
 
And to think that all along it’s exactly the opposite, that Fascism mainly happens after the minimum wage is raised! Wow. My bad! Learn something new and different every day, I guess.
 
If in the next life I should happen to run across my Swedish immigrant grandparents somewhere out there in the ether, rest assured I’m going to chew them out BIG TIME for leaving good old Socialist Sweden behind and moving to THIS, The Land Of The Nutcase Screwball!
 
OPEN THREAD

47 thoughts on “The Watering Hole; Friday September 5 2014; Kochs, Fascism, and the Minimum Wage

  1. Fine and his idiotic spewing need to come back down to earth, to reality.

    A Mall With Two Minimum Wages

    The Westfield Valley Fair Mall straddles two cities. One side of the mall is in Santa Clara, but walk a few feet down the mall, and you’re in San Jose. In 2012, San Jose voters agreed to raise the city’s minimum wage from $8 to $10 an hour.
    (snip)
    She could also raise her prices. But the other pretzel shop on the lower-wage side of the mall made that difficult.

    In the end, Ryzak raised her prices a little bit and made up the rest by cutting into her profits.

    Ryzak says she’s fine with raising the minimum wage. She just wishes it was the same everywhere — across the mall, California, and the entire country.

    Since 2012, the minimum wage rates in the mall have changed again: Santa Clara’s minimum wage is now $9 an hour; San Jose’s, $10.15.

    • Wouldn’t it stand to reason that the stores on the lower wage side of the mall would be more in demand, and command a higher rent than the other? Thus the cost of doing business would still equalize, at least somewhat.

  2. Ukraine ceasefire talks as West plans Russia sanctions

    Ukraine, Russia and pro-Russia rebels are set to begin afternoon talks in Belarus. However, there are new reports of shelling near the town of Mariupol.

    Meanwhile, Western countries are preparing to tighten sanctions on Russia in case talks come to nothing.

    (let us hope this is more than toothless gum-flapping)

    • 1. Poroshenko was forced to come to the table in weakness. by Putin telling him, “each day goes by I take more” – Putin wins a lot by Ukraine forced to talk with so-called ‘rebels’ – legitimizing them.
      2. Putin got away with sticking his forces in. he is still lying about it – but until he sees upside in fessing up, he will continue to lie.
      3. You see ‘preparing to’ and ‘unless’ – the gutlessness of the EU and US here is staggering – everything is a ‘maybe I send you a strongly-worded memo, unless you stop punching that kid’….. Putin acts, west talks….. the talks are simply a play to give the EU an excuse to not do anything! Putin wins again.
      4. Obama confirmed that NATO will not intervene directly. Obama told Putin: “Ukraine is Czechoslovakia, Baltic States are Poland Mr Hitler”
      5. John McCain blew hot air all over Kyev yesterday. I had to explain to Tanya what that was about😦
      6. In Russia, ‘peace’ is simply a time you use to prepare to fight again. Russia does not yet have its access to Crimea…..

    • By the way it is staggering and disgusting that Putin is lying to the mothers of the Russian soldiers coming home in pine boxes….. he says they are on exercises, on ‘on holiday in Ukraine’ ! My god, the man has no soul at all….. I was truly, truly disgusted, he cannot even own up to what he is doing to the mothers…..

      …. and the west wants to reason with him?

  3. Every social advancement in our country has been opposed by conservatives claiming it would be the end of everything. And they have never once been right. Why do we keep listening to them?

    It takes a lot of balls to speak at an event sponsored by the Koch Brothers and tell everyone they need to work hard to succeed, when Chuck and Dave inherited hundreds of millions (if not billions) from their father.

    • I couldn’t have told you whether Larry Gatlin was alive or dead. I’m still not sure…

      • I’ve never before heard of Larry Gatlin (thank all gods), but was truly offended by this line at the end of his epistle: “Larry Gatlin is a country music singer and songwriter.” Using the words “country” and “music” together as if such a thing could ever exist pretty much explains the entire context of the idiot’s “letter.” I mean, really.

        As an aside, Gatlin writes:

        In the name of that same God invoked so eloquently and powerfully by that president, I ask that you, Mr. President — if you’re not too busy playing golf, campaigning, orchestrating the cover ups of all the “phony scandals,” and just being cool — could again declare war on the enemies who have unleashed “unprovoked and dastardly attacks” on the United States.

        Perhaps he’s not aware that to “declare war” is NOT a privilege granted by the Constitution to the President, that it’s reserved for Congress only?

        Idiocy such as his may, I suppose, serve to grant a certain legitimacy to the words “country music”?

        Nah.

        • I knew the Gatlin Brothers opened a club in Branson, Missouri, but very little news seems to escape from Branson, which IMHO is a very good thing.

        • So basically some washed up old white guy who has obviously swallowed every right wing myth available on the internet disrespects the President.

  4. In line with what we all now know, that minimum wage hikes bring on Fascism, here’s another revelation that will SHOCK!!

    Hannity regular and World Net Daily contributor Erik Rush thinks he’s figured out what the real reason is that President Obama designated the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks region in southern New Mexico as protected land.

    Erik Rush: Obama Helping ISIS Set Up Terrorist Base In New Mexico To Stage Attacks

    It’s all part of Obama’s sinister plan to force a declaration of martial law, after which he can and will declare himself dictator!😯

    • Oh Yeah!…..I was in the Organ Mountains just outside of Las Cruces Saturday and Sunday. I saw several suspicious looking persons wandering around in hiking boots, shorts, floppy brimmed hats carrying water bottles. I’m sure they were a secretive preemptive reconnaissance group clear the way for the caliphate.

      One of those tricky godless bastards was disguised as a freckle faced, redheaded short female person carrying a pink Hello Kitty back pack.

      • Well don’t turn it up too loud…. I didn’t see any naughty bits though…. but it is a catchy tune. At least someone listened to it😉

  5. Meanwhile in Estonia …. it may be starting….. (back in March I was sending my friend in Kyev pictures of ‘pro-Russian’ demonstrators in Crimea who also appeared to have taken part in 2009-2010 demonstrations in Lithuania… Putin is an ex-KGB colonel, the bastard has thought this stuff through and he is playing the West like a violin right now.)

    • Never set yourself out as the epitome of ‘moral values’ if you’ve something to hide. Gov. and the Mrs. better get some time behind bars.

  6. I’m starting to think the Koch brothers aren’t that smart after all.
    If they wanted more billions, they’d corner the market on printer ink and really bankrupt the average middle class.
    I’d better shut up and not give them any ideas.

    • Their real problem is that they’re not “smart” at all. Their undying support of the GOP/AFM stands as all the evidence anyone ever needs to prove to everyone in the world with half a mind that the Koch Brothers are nothing other than stupid fuckers.

      They do the Q.E.D. every day all by themselves, in fact.

      • I would love to get a look at their books. Both sets. They have purchased a political party and pay enormous sums to elect that party, using their personal fortunes, in order to operate their businesses without interference. I can’t help but wonder if their personal fortunes would actually be bigger if they had instead invested all that money and energy promoting green technologies and making sure that their operations meet federal standards.

        • Yep. I don’t presume them to be ‘stupid fuckers’ without cause. As I noted, they supply the “‘Quod Erat Demonstrandum’ every day all by themselves” — as you note.

  7. After explaining that when he sees people on the streets, he tells them to “get off your ass and work hard like we did…”

    What a funny guy!

    When I first moved to Idaho in 1993, there was an incident in Coeur d’Alene wherein a dumbass snidely told a homeless guy to “get a job.” Instantly, the homeless guy stood up and plunged a knife into the chest of said dumbass, killing him.

    Apparently the homeless guy already had a job…as Dumbass Chest Stabber in Chief.

    I guess he wasn’t on duty when Fink was speaking.

  8. Backing off the Tweeter for a day or so here – ran into one of Bibi’s brownshirts yesterday…. I was monitoring the NATO gig and he breaks in with some shit about Turkey…..being all Islamofascist and stuff. After a few efforts to keep the focus on NATO and whether or not Turkey had breached the treaty or not, he’s like all Turkey supports ISIS and shit. So I give him my email (a turn-and-burn email – I’m not daft) and ask him to back up his assertion and while he’s at it, tell me why Gaza Ghetto 2014 is not the same as Warsaw Ghetto 1943. Next thing I know I’m a ‘fookin, piece of rat-shit anti-Semite – and I should fook my mum’.

    Twitter has just replied to my ‘block and report’ complaint that this is ‘A-ok’ to them…. I told the ‘Jew, American, Zionist, someother shit’ guy he should seek help before he beats his wife up… anyhow… there ya go.

  9. Oh great. Chuck Todd is kicking off his new gig with an interview of President Obama. What’s the over/under on how many times Chucky says some variation of “some people say”?

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