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Here’s the poster boy for cold, heartless, selfish greed

Lloyd Blankfein (above) is the kind of guy with whom you wish you were personally acquainted — just so you could diss him to his face.

Ethan Rome EXPLAINS:

The hypocrisy of Lloyd Blankfein, a Wall Street banker, and other corporate leaders who have inserted themselves into the debate over major tax and spending decisions under consideration in Congress is nothing short of repugnant. Blankfein’s Goldman Sachs got billions from the federal government during the Wall Street bailouts, enabling him to hold a job that paid him $16.1 million in 2011, and now he wants the rest of us to take a pay cut — now and in the future. Referring to Social Security, he told CBS, “You’re going to have to do something, undoubtedly, to lower people’s expectations of what they’re going to get.” That’s a second-rate vision for a first world country, and we just voted for a lot better than that.

Blankfein is one of many Fortune 500 CEOs who joined together under the name “Fix the Debt,” a campaign to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid to address the federal deficit during the fiscal showdown. This group of more than 90 CEOs is pushing cuts to middle-class programs while shielding millionaires, billionaires and big corporations from tax increases.

Each of these executives has amassed retirement assets averaging more than $9.1 million, according to a report released today by the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS). Of the more than 90 CEOs involved in Fix the Debt, 41 run companies with pension programs, but only two of those plans are fully funded, IPS said. It’s the second impressive IPS report in the last week, and it lays bare the flagrant hypocrisy of these captains of finance and industry.

(Snip)

In the name of “fiscal responsibility” the self-interested CEOs animating Fix the Debt — which, by the way, is led by 14 white men and only two women — are pushing a deficit reduction plan that would lower taxes for corporations and the super-rich while slashing programs central to the middle class and those working their way into it. The Fix the Debt CEOs start with the assumption that poor, working and middle-class families should shoulder the bulk of the burden of deficit reduction. Meanwhile, none of the deficit hawks is talking about creating jobs and growing the U.S. economy.

The corporate executives literally have no idea how the rest of America lives.

UPDATE: By the way, here’s what the American public thinks of Blankfein’s economic nostrums:

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26 Comments

  1. We should take all of his money. In fact we should take all of the money from the 90 evil CEO’s. Take all their money and dump it straight into the federal treasury. That’ll teach ‘em and it will make me feel great too. The heartless bastards deserve it.

    In fact, anybody who has any assets worth more than say… 3 million dollars. Let’s take that too. They couldn’t have earned it, they must have cheated their workers and sheltered money from taxes in order to get so rich. It’s really the people’s money after all. Anything we get to keep is our good fortune. That’ll really make me feel really good.

    Now, with all of that money stuffing the federal coffers,we’re all good right? No more budget problems, no need to reform entitlements, no need to curb spending at all. Cradle to grave baby, we are all on easy street now.

    I am glad we solved that problem and taught those bastards a lesson all in one fell swoop.

    What a country!

  2. Anyone who thinks we can simply tax the rich to get out of this mess needs to have a much better understanding of federal spending.

    http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2012/10/federal-spending-by-the-numbers-2012

  3. Luke Fredrickson

    doc, no one said anything about taking these 14 pigs’ money… at least no bigger share of their money than the government gets of mine.

    What we really need to stop taking is the crap they peddle. Of course entitlement reform is a must, but why do these idiots keep pushing us to lower their tax rates?! These shameless ego-trippers want sacrifice for everyone but themselves.

    The reason they want to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid is because they make no money off them. It’s the same reason the other elephant in the room – lower DOD spending – is strictly off their table.

  4. Luke Fredrickson

    Nef, gimme a source, just ONE person, who claims that “we can simply tax the rich to get out of this mess.”

    I would also like to see just one piece of evidence that we can simply UNtax the rich to get out of this mess.

  5. Brian Opsahl

    The biggest insult is the fact that the Banker pig that just got his ass saved by the very taxpayers he derides…..stinks Doc: who in this world is worth 16 million a year…and then can’t afford to help fix the deficit his Bad Banking helped cause…really !! are you that stupid SIR !! that we have to explain how the rich are constantly screwing the rest of us…!!

    When the rich pay a little more in taxes they go from 70 foot sailboats to 65 foot sailboats
    when you tax the middle class and poor more they go from barly paying their bills to bankruptys….thats the differance…SIR !! and its big

  6. “doc, no one said anything about taking these 14 pigs’ money… at least no bigger share of their money than the government gets of mine.”

    Really, that’s not what the President has been saying and that’s not what people voted for.

    I am pretty sure the Democrats want to raise marginal tax rates on “millionaires” (read, anyone who makes more than 200,00 a year) back to the 39% level. Are you paying 39 % now Luke?

  7. I bet the middle class guy making the 70 foot sailboats will be pissed when he loses his job. But that’s what he gets for working in an industry catering to those rich bastards.

  8. Brian Opsahl

    he will just make a 65 foot boat….and thats how it works…1 guy 1 boat 1 owner…
    ah…but the boat workers will just get there hours cut, pay cut, and benifits cut.. while the owner of the boat Company goes sailing with the BOAT owner….!!

  9. Luke Fredrickson

    Are you paying 39 % now Luke?

    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    Pretty close. However I prefer keeping the top rate the same, a hard cap on deductions, and taxing capital gains and carried interest as normal income. I also support ending all tax relief for overseas corporate investment – offshore at your own expense.

  10. Brian Opsahl

    We do have a tried and true model that has worked before and it should work again….the 39.6 % that Bill Clinton used exploded our economy into creating some 23 million new jobs…they didn’t always pay the greatest but everybody sure had the opportunity to find work…?

  11. Poor doc! He just flails all over the place in the face of criticism of his plutocratic heroes. He ignores the hypocrisy of corporate socialists like Lloyd Blankfein calling for cutbacks in social programs for the less fortunate. And he defends further tax breaks for the super-rich by arguing that they help create jobs among manufacturers of yachts.

    When you combine doc’s comments in this thread with the 4,500 others he has submitted here over the past three years and four months, you get this massive self-parody of a snobbish, testy plutocrat wannabe who will actively support even a political buffoon like Sen. Ron Johnson if he seems to favor socialism for the deserving rich, but not for the undeserving poor.

  12. Luke – I think you’d be surprised about how little most people know. The only articles I see on liberal web sites (and I visit those daily) are articles for taxing the rich. I have yet to see a single article or opinion on what is really needed to reign in entitlement spending.

    Think of it this way, most people think we spend a significantly higher percentage of our budget for aid to other countries than what we actually do. So don’t even think for a second that their isn’t a noticeable percentage of people that think we just need to tax the rich only.

    Liberals are so fixed on the rich, that they refuse to even look at sensible solutions to what it would take to really fix the problems. Of course, they are also not aware of problems that come with “increased revenues.” Ross Kaminsky does a good job of explaining one such issue here:

    “One of the keystone revenue boosters is a provision that would cap federal income tax deductions at $50,000 per year for high-income Americans.

    But capping at such a low level the deductibility of mortgage interest and charitable contributions, just to name two big-ticket deductions for the well-heeled, is a mistake that will have several large unintended negative consequences.

    First, the obvious: For universities, hospitals, and other recipients of very large donations, this plan would instantly dry up a major source of funding. The outcry from the non-profit industry against this plan will be intense as it was the last time Barack Obama tried to limit the deductibility of gifts to non-profits.

    Second, the value of expensive homes will drop as the effective after-tax cost of mortgage payments on those homes skyrockets. For those of you who won’t shed a tear when someone’s $3 million home becomes worth only $2.25 million, just wait until your county soon comes to raise your property tax and sales tax rates to make up for that lost revenue, telling you “it’s for the children.”

    http://spectator.org/archives/2012/11/28/blaming-grover/

  13. Luke Fredrickson

    Neftali says:
    The only articles I see on liberal web sites (and I visit those daily) are articles for taxing the rich.

    ::::::::::::::::::::::::

    Again, point me to ONE that claims “we can simply tax the rich to get out of this mess.”

  14. Brian Opsahl

    As Bill Kristol on Fox….paying a little more isnt going to hurt anybody at the TOP…but taking it from the middle folks will..
    why can’t you understand this…? The poor don’t have anything to take…there flippin poor..!!
    The middle class are usully one or two bills away from being bankrupt…and do pay a large portion of the real taxes…from real work..!!
    The rich…well as you can see by how they live….they CAN afford it..!! it would NOT keep them from eating…now would it…SIR !!

  15. Luke – Seriously dude, all you need to do is look at the comments on HuffigntonPost or Daily Kos. There are thousands of such people.

  16. Brian,

    The problem is the rich don’t have enough money to pay for what our government has spent. We either need to A) reduce spending and including significant reform of future entitlement spending B) Raises taxes on the middle class as well as the wealthy or more likely C) Both A and B.

    The math facts dictate the above choices. The wealthy will certainly pay more both in actual taxes and likely in loss of promised future benefits. But it ain’t gonna be enough.

  17. Poor Pat.

    He is such an addled liberal that the part of his brain that does simple math is fried.

    I’m not a plutocrat wannabe any more than you are a communist.

    Although if wanting much less government involvement in our lives and more responsible government budgeting is your definition of plutocrat, I guess I will own that willingly.

  18. Luke Fredrickson

    Neftali says:
    November 28, 2012 at 12:53 pm
    Luke – Seriously dude, all you need to do is look at the comments on HuffigntonPost or Daily Kos. There are thousands of such people.

    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    You’re sinking to quoting comments on websites? C’mon, man! No liberal politician or pundit is claiming that “we can simply tax the rich to get out of this mess.” Give it up.

    What they are saying is that entitlement reform will mean sacrifice by the most needy. Thus, the least needy should get off THEIR welfare train and contribute more equitably. I liked Reagan’s instincts here, as I have noted before. No more 15% rates for large capital gains, etc.

  19. Mr. Blankenfiend is just stoking the flames for his gazillionaire club so they’ll put the heat on congress to strike a favorable deal. Ultimately their taxes will go up a few points but at what cost. No government banking regulations, keeping their money tax free overseas or reducing benefits for the 99 percent. These elitist aren’t going away empty handed.

  20. Right you are Steverino.

    They aren’t going away empty handed and the politicians in Washington will make sure that is the case.

    Pat accuses me of being a plutocrat? What a joke. The plutocrats have been re-elected and remain solidly in control.

  21. Luke – You never specified politician or pundit. You just said “just ONE person”

    I just glanced at the web site of the most far-left politician I can think of, Bernie Sanders. His plan is pretty much all tax hikes.

    http://www.sanders.senate.gov/newsroom/news/?id=a20566d5-8292-4fc6-ac0a-f10d4bbc7edb

    Of course, he does have some stuff about nonsensical military cuts, and the cliche about cutting “waste, fraud, and abuse” which every politician since then dawn of time claims to favor but no one ever seems to do anything about.

    I’m sure if you checked on several other high profile Senators and perhaps a few Representatives, you’d find similar efforts. Just don’t bother searching the White House, they have no plan to balance the budget.

  22. Bernie Sanders is one of the few honest souls in the legislative room. Wish we had more like him in the Senate.

  23. We couldn’t afford to knock down the military budget by about $100 billion or so? Seriously? The US defense budget is bigger than the next 14 countries COMBINED. You really think that knocking it down by 20 percent will bring about a huge risk to national security? Please. The GOP would rather cut suppor to the poor and elderly than funding for needless missile systems.

    I’m a liberal Dem and I have no problem with the rich. Most of my liberal friends have no issues with the rich when they make it fairly and squarely and when they don’t do it on the backs of the middle class.

    However, how can anyone defend a scumbag like Blankfein who over-leverages his company, pays him and his partners hundreds of millions in salary and bonuses and then, when the s*** hits the fan, comes running to the government for a bailout? Can anyone make me a a logical non-partisan argument why that is a good thing?

  24. monkey – As I’m sure you’re happy to point out, the government can indeed create jobs. When you cut the military by 20% you’re talking about tens of thousands of jobs that will instantly be axed.

    When that many people that have served our country are thrown out into the street, don’t think for a second that the GOP won’t use that to their full advantage politically.

    How’s that old saying go? Oh yeah. Be careful for what you wish for, you may get it.

  25. Brian Opsahl

    Not sure what kind of Doc, Doc is, but if your not smart enough to understand what the President has said over and over and we have to keep repeating ourselves. His is working on fixing the deficit with EVERYTHING on the table except SS,ACA….What part of that doe’s the rich protecting Doctor not get…!!
    Taxes will go up on the ones who have done very well and it will NOT hurt…get that Doc
    There will be cuts in just about everything else..they just haven’t got that far yet..

    Unlike Bush who favored the rich with his tax plans …Mr. Obama will tax the ones it will not hurt…its called fairness !!

  26. Craig Knauss

    “When you cut the military by 20% you’re talking about tens of thousands of jobs that will instantly be axed.”…….That’s nonsense!

    A big chunk of our military budget is maintaining bases overseas. We could scale those down or close some of them. The impact would be minimal for U.S. workers since many of the base workers are foreign nationals. We’re subsidizing their economy at the expense of our own.

    A big chunk of our military budget is R&D for the next great war toy. Sometimes what we have is already adequate. How much did we spend on the B-1 bomber? How much have we spent on the F-22? The same for newer classes of submarines and surface ships. Are they really that much better to justify spending billions developing them?

    Another chunk of our military budget is for excess war toys. Remember Reagan’s “600 ship Navy”? We didn’t get it and we’ve done just fine without it. And Romney wanted 300+ ships without any explanation why they were needed. Did he forget that each Ohio Class submarine has 24 ballistic missiles and about 240 half-megaton warheads? Each sub could just about eradicate the human race. And we’ve built about 18 of them. Isn’t that good enough?

    How do places like Canada survive without spending obscene amounts of money on their military?

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