04 January 2016

THE KOCH BROTHERS & THE 1% This is what oligarchy looks like 4JAN16

OLIGARCHY , PLUTOCRACY. You may not be familiar with these words but you should be because the koch brothers and those of the 1% like them are paying the majority of the republican party (local, state and national) and too many third way democrats (again, local, state and national) to turn our Republic into a plutocracy. citizens united was a huge step in reaching that goal. The money the 1% is pouring into the 2016 elections, especially the presidential campaigns, is astounding. Much of that money funds the various right wing, conservative, "religious" propaganda machines that keep various groups of poor, working class and middle class Americans opposing each other through misinformation, deception and fear at a time when we should all be united in opposition to cutting government investment in our infrastructure, cutting government funding of education, cuts in funding of protecting our environment, health care, emergency services like FEMA as well as police and fire fighters, and severe cuts in the social safety net that too many Americans needed during the recent recession (unemployment benefits, SNAP/Food Stamps, housing and health care) and those who still need assistance due to economic inequality and insecurity. These people are determined to end Social Security when it should be expanded, and are determined to end Medicare and Medicaid and vets benefits. These same republicans and third way democrats are focused on more tax breaks for the rich and powerful, damn the American social contract they have have a moral and financial responsibility to. The koch brothers and the 1% like them do not care if you, your family, your children, parents, friends and neighbors have enough food to eat, access to affordable health care, a good education, decent housing, and fair pay for the work you do. They really are that cold and calculating. The want more, more wealth, more power, they want to be in control. They are waging class warfare and we have to fight back. +Senator Bernie Sanders I VT is the ONLY candidate for president not accepting money from super pacs or American oligarchs. Check out this statement from his campaign, click the Bernie 2016 button to go to his campaign website and if you can make a donation. Join the only campaign fighting back against the 1% and the politicians they own!

"This is our movement.

It's time to get big money out of politics.

We are at a moment of truth. We need to face up to the reality of where we are as a nation, and we need a mass movement of people to fight for change.

I believe America is ready for a new path to the future.

Make a contribution to our presidential campaign today. I can't wait to see what we will accomplish together."
- Bernie Sanders

noun: oligarchy; plural noun: oligarchies
  1. a small group of people having control of a country, organization, or institution.
    "the ruling oligarchy of military men around the president"
    • a country governed by an oligarchy.
      "the English aristocratic oligarchy of the 19th century"
    • government by oligarchy.
      noun: plutocracy
      1. government by the wealthy.
        • a country or society governed by the wealthy.
          plural noun: plutocracies
        • an elite or ruling class of people whose power derives from their wealth.
      Plutocracy (from Greek πλοῦτος, ploutos, meaning "wealth", and κράτος, kratos, meaning "power, dominion, rule") or plutarchy, is a form of oligarchy and defines a society ruled or controlled by the small minority of the wealthiest citizens. The first known use of the term was in 1652.

      Bernie Sanders for President

      “I like to give on a scale where I can see impact...” - David Koch
      Earlier this year, a number of Republicans flew to California to make fundraising pitches to more than four hundred wealthy conservative donors attending a private conference hosted by the Koch brothers.
      It’s worth taking a moment to ask the question, who are the Koch brothers, and what do they want?
      The Koch brothers are the second-wealthiest family in America worth $82 billion. For the Koch brothers, $82 billion in wealth apparently is not good enough. Owning the second-largest private company in America is apparently not good enough. It doesn’t appear that they will be satisfied until they are able to control the entire political process.
      This issue isn't personal for me. I don't know the Koch brothers, but I do know this. They have advocated for destroying the federal programs that are critical to the financial and personal health of middle class Americans.
      Now, most Americans know that the Koch brothers are the primary source of funding for the Tea Party, and that’s fine. They know that they favor the outright repeal of the Affordable Care Act, and that’s their opinion. It’s wrong, but that’s fine as well.
      But it is not widely known that David Koch once ran for Vice President of the United States of America on the Libertarian Party ticket because he believed Ronald Reagan was much too liberal. And he ran on a platform that included the following:
      • “We favor the repeal of the fraudulent, virtually bankrupt and increasingly oppressive Social Security system.”
      • “We favor the abolition of Medicare and Medicaid programs.”
      • “We support repeal of all laws which impede the ability of any person to find employment, such as minimum wage laws…”
      • “We support the eventual repeal of all taxation.”
      In 1980, David Koch’s presidential ticket received one percent of the vote from the American people. And rightly so. His views were so extreme they were rejected completely out of hand by the American people.
      But fast forward almost thirty-six years, and one of the most significant realities of modern politics is just how successful David Koch and the like-minded billionaires attending his retreat have been at moving the Republican Party to the extreme right. The ideas above that were dismissed as downright crazy in 1980 are now part of today’s mainstream Republican thinking.
      The Koch brothers, and billionaires like them, have bought up the private sector and now they’re buying up the government. It’s up to us to put a stop to them, but it will require all of us standing together with one voice on this issue.
      Your donation to our campaign today is a contribution towards the dismantling of a corrupt system of campaign finance held in place by the Koch brothers and their billionaire friends:
      Here’s the truth: The economic and political systems of this country are stacked against ordinary Americans. The rich get richer and use their wealth to buy elections, and I believe that we cannot change this corrupt system by taking its money. If we’re serious about creating jobs, health care for all, climate change, and the needs of our children and the elderly, we must be serious about campaign finance reform.
      So far in this election, less than four hundred families have contributed the majority of all the money raised by all the candidates and super PACs combined. According to media reports, one family will spend more money in this election than either the Democratic or Republican Parties.
      This is not democracy. This is oligarchy.
      Our job is not to think small in this moment. The current system of campaign finance in this country is utterly corrupt. That is one of the reasons I am so proud of how we have funded our campaign — over 2.5 million contributions from working Americans giving less than $30 at a time. But our campaign is unique.
      We must pass a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United, and I will not nominate any justice to the Supreme Court who does not make it abundantly clear that she or he will overturn that decision. We need legislation that requires wealthy individuals and corporations who make large campaign contributions to disclose where their money is going. And more importantly, I believe we need to move towards the public funding of elections.
      Our vision for American democracy should be a nation in which all people, regardless of their income, can participate in the political process, can run for office without begging for contributions from the wealthy and the powerful.
      Tomorrow afternoon I’ll be in New York City to deliver a major speech about our need to create a financial system that works for all Americans, not just the few. I’ll be in touch shortly after. I hope that you’ll keep an eye on your inbox for my message.
      In solidarity,
      Bernie Sanders

      Paid for by Bernie 2016
      (not the billionaires)
      PO Box 905 - Burlington VT 05402 United States - (855) 4-BERNIE