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Why We Must Fight Economic Apartheid in America


#1

Why We Must Fight Economic Apartheid in America

Robert Reich

Almost lost by the wave of responses to the Supreme Court’s decisions last week upholding the Affordable Care Act and allowing gays and lesbians to marry was the significance of the Court’s third decision – on housing discrimination.

In a 5-4 ruling, the Court found that the Fair Housing Act of 1968 requires plaintiffs to show only that the effect of a policy is discriminatory, not that defendants intended to discriminate.


#2

While it is pretty obvious to most of the readers here at CD, I don't think that Robert Reich is going to get a sympathetic ear outside of this forum. Also his solutions are modest and will automatically be rejected by our current crop of corporate sycophants that dominate our government.
Most African Americans and Latinos live in abject poverty. The solution lies in a radical transformation like giving all blacks and Latinos a guaranteed income while providing interest free loans to all low income families. Also the Federal government must pass a law preventing corporatipons from suing local governments and thereby driving up local taxes which further impoversh those communities. Finally it is essential that all services (i.e. public transportation, healthcare, water and sewage, electricity, education, etc.) are owned by the public and run by the public in those communities.


#3

The last opportunity for the "Federal Government to pass a law preventing corporations from suing local governments" passed when Ronny Raygun was elected in 1980.

25 of the 30 chapters of Obama's TPP focus on enabling corporations to sue all levels of government, not for actual damages but for loss of ANTICIPATED profits. Obama's TTIP and TISA will further institutionalize the transfer of judicial authority from governments to corporate tribunals.

Rather than increasing taxes, most local governments will decriminalize and deregulate crimes committed by corporations and the US Government, spiraling themselves and their constituents into the third world.


#4

My area continues to see a decrease in home values and it is low income. I would add that the massive bank bailouts allotted huge funds which allowed banking consortiums to buy up lots of foreclosed property. Two hours south of me in Seminole-Clearwater-Largo, there had been a glut of foreclosed homes that were sold, in blocks, for cash. Then the landlords raised rent to ridiculous levels. Seeing the low prices before the consortiums moved in to pluck up all the plums, and hoping to enjoy the low bank interest rate, I applied for a loan hoping to pick up a place for my daughter. Forget it. If an individual doesn't have a high income, they don't qualify. The realtor trying to help me told me that one couple had to buy the place for $280,000 cash. They had it. Another swept up a place for $500k cash. I wondered how people could have that much cash on hand, but she said they'd sold their prior homes in New England and found Florida prices attractive.


#5

You're right... apart from the S & L Crisis that had teeth when the regulatory agencies were still in place to do their assigned jobs.

Imagine if a real cure for Cancer were to be found? At $500,000 to over a million for major Cancer treatments, an entire medical infrastructure has built up around fighting this dread disease. And inasmuch as hospitals are traded like stock on the various exchanges, one can imagine their "parent corporations" suing should a cure be found since it would put all these costly medical mechanics out of business.

Little is worse for human agency and sovereignty than these disgusting treaties (TIPP, TPP, etc.)


#6

This is how that cabal works. The more poor people there are that are unable to afford homes, the more the demand on Rental shelter by the same. This than drives rents upwards.

Once more that stupid market that people like Voiceofreason advocates. It an absolute farce and is manipulated and has always been manipulated for the benefit of the few.

The Stock market from the beginning was manipulated by a very small group of bvery wealthy people who would orchestrate both bull and bear markets. They would buy the Stocks when low and then sell when high. They would crash the market when it peaked but not before divesting. The profits would be used to buy when it low again. Over time this gives that small group control over everything.

Yes sometimes a millionaire gets burned, but I am not talking about them. Sometimes a Billionaire gets burned but I am not talking about them either. At the very top are people who control much more in the way of wealth then the supposed richest men in the world like Bill Gates and these guys run the show. They are that all seeing eye on the top of the Pyramid of the US dollar bill.


#7

Those poor people forced into renting b/c they can't afford to buy also tend to be destructive tenants. Many landlords lose money on this scheme b/c they have to repair the house each time they rent it out. They're lucky if they can even collect rents. So, the people found a way to fight back. Power to the people! In fact, the house that I bought was such a property where the tenants trashed the house to the point that even the landlord stopped making payments on the house and let it go into foreclosure. I basically bought the house for the cost of the land. My gain! but it is has been a huge amount of work trying to get the house back into a livable condition. The house was unbeleivably trashed! I think the way we do housing needs to be completely overhauled and reworked. Landlords and private property ownership needs to be completely done away with and something completely different needs brought in. I look towards pre-Roman Celtic communities with their accompanying commons areas for inspiration. There are also traditional communities in Mexico who still hold land in common. In those communities, everyone is alloted space to build a house and grow a garden the moment they are born. There's no buying or selling of land and no renting. Surely, we can develop another way.


#9

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#10

No, not necessarily. If they have been treated like human beings all this time, they'd behave like human beings. That's been the core of the problem all this time- the poor do not get treated like human beings. So, the poor rebels... And here you go advocating the continued policy of not treating the poor like human beings. Don't be surprised when you get what you ask for!