Welcome To Our Fast-Tracked Future— A Not So Kind Country

The capitalists on Wall Street “are determined to be the last predator standing. And then they too will be snuffed out. Unrestrained hubris always leads to self-immolation.”— Chris Hedges

Capitalism devours all. Wall Street’s hubris will be its fall.

By Dennis Brault
The Daily Call (7/2/15)

This is the dystopian future that Congressman Ron Kind voted for as the House passed fast track (TPA) authority last week: planetary annihilation with only the “last predator standing”. The capitalists will find nothing left to devour but themselves.

Wall Street’s planned move to escape the reach of the people’s nation states is nearly complete; we are entering the corporate new world order. Multinational corporations may sue these nation states for the loss of hypothetical billions in future profits caused by a nation’s laws. These lawsuits take place not in our nation’s courts but at a world corporate-tribunal composed of three corporate attorneys. The tribunal’s ruling trumps even those of our Supreme Court.

This is a right that none of you, I, nor any other group or affiliation has. It is a special right only for multinational corporations—and that’s not fair under any sensible logic, let alone constitutional under the 14th Amendment’s “Equal Protection” clause. Unfortunately for us, Rep. Kind’s vote makes our Constitution irrelevant.

Congressman Kind’s vote will grant our next President the constitution-subverting fast-track trade-treaty authority (TPA) until July 2021. Fast-track gives the president the congressional power to legislate our laws into compliance with trade treaties. Ron’s vote gives that power to Obama and our next President—perhaps President Scott Walker or President Donald Trump. Regardless, President Whoever will have that power until 2021.

Like all great magicians, politicians like Ron Kind understand the art of illusion—illusion performed right in front of our eyes. Congressman Kind, like the other well-skilled, deceptive Wall-Street politicians, have us looking at the TPP so we miss the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) treaty hidden up their sleeve. (See Wikileaks story below.) TiSA is a fast-track treaty covering services that control  80% of our economy:

“The deal would liberalize global trade of services, an expansive definition that encompasses air and maritime transport, package delivery, e-commerce, telecommunications, accountancy, engineering, consulting, health care, private education, financial services and more, covering close to 80 percent of the U.S. economy.” (The New Republic, 6/4/15)

Just imagine Wisconsin’s king of crony capitalism, Scott Walker, with sole fast-track (TPA) authority to write our laws into compliance with treaties like TiSA. Scott Walker could have that power until 2021. Corporate cronyism and political payback are tenets that permeate Walker’s entire tenure as governor. Crony-funded payback—a.k.a., Walker’s Wisconsin Idea. Gov. Walker has been a disaster for Wisconsin, and we must all do what we can to assure he doesn’t do the same to America and the rest of the world.

Shame on you Congressman Kind for being an enabler of disaster, putting all of our futures at risk—the disaster of fast-tracking Walker’s Wisconsin Idea around the world.

So, what reasons does Rep. Kind have for voting in support of fast-track authority?

From The Daily Call archive we find that Congressman Kind is the chairman of the New Democrat Coalition, which was instrumental in passing fast-track (TPA). Jane White, writing for the Huffington Post, describes the New Democrat Coalition:

“Wonder why we haven’t had genuine financial services reform? The blame falls on a group called the New Democrat Coalition, members of Congress who have sold their souls to the business lobby in exchange for generous campaign contributions and future jobs as lobbyists — call it ‘The K Street Project, Part Blue.’ According to the New York Times, ProPublica calls the NDC ‘a group of 69 lawmakers whose close relationship with several hundred Washington lobbyists makes them one of the most successful money machines since the K Street Project collapsed.’ Eight of the top 13 Democratic House recipients of Wall Street cash are NDC members.”

Congressman Kind’s fast-track donations from pro-free trade corporate donors total just over $1 million.

New Democrat Coalition Chairman Ron Kind shows off his magician’s deceptive touch when he recently wrote for the coalition:

“The passage of Trade Promotion Authority is simply the first step in the process that gives President Obama the same authority every President since Franklin Roosevelt, except for President Nixon, has enjoyed.”  

Sounds convincing. Did you catch his magic trick?

Lori Wallach explains, ”…in fact, Fast Track was first hatched by Richard Nixon, not FDR. And it only went into effect in the 1970s, not the 1930s.”  So, FDR was given Tariff Proclamation Authority, not the Nixon-created Trade Promotion Authority (TPA). SEe the difference? Clearly, Congressman Kind knows how to use all the magic tricks, including misdirected lies.

Rep. Kind and the New Democrat Coalition he chairs was featured in a recent La Crosse Tribune story, “How Ron Kind Helped Save an Obama Priority”, showcasing his leadership in passing fast-track authority. Congressman Kind said, “it was all about information.”

What Rep. Kind really means is it is all about misinformation, or rather missing information. These trade treaties are classified. The only publicly available information we have comes from leaks. Of the 29 chapters in the agreement, only 5 deal with trade, and the contents of two won’t even be released until four years after the TPP would be signed into place. Even if only some of the leaked information about these treaties proves true, they will be a disaster for Americans. And, unfortunately, thanks to Congressman Kind’s fast-track vote, these remaining disastrous parts can’t be fixed.

Follow the congressman’s money

As usual, it’s also about the money. And the real money for Congressman Kind will come, as Jane White wrote above, when Ron is a Wall Street congressional lobbyist working on K Street for millions of dollars per year. So, Daily Call readers, let’s help Congressman Kind move onto his next career. He can have his millions and we can have better representation, which will be worth a far more to us.

A recent Truthout article, “Fast-Track Retaliation” suggests the best solution Democrats dissatisfied with Congressman Kind can take: retaliate.

We deserve to be represented by a real progressive Democrat. One from the Russ Feingold and Mark Pocan side of the party. We need to find that person, then primary and defeat Ron Kind next year. Will you help?


Ron Kind’s Record Of Betrayal Goes Well Beyond The Secretive Trans-Pacific Corporate Giveaway

Need some more convincing that Congressman Kind isn’t representing us? Below I’ve put together a review some of Congressman Kind’s more outrageous betrayals I came across as I was researching for this story. You can find these and many more at the Daily Call Ron Kind archive.

From the archive we learn Rep. Kind is a co-chair of the Third Way, another Wall Street creation that wants to cut Social Security, Medicare, regulations; pass the TPP, TTIP and TISA treaties; and assure continued big-bank gambling with the taxpayer’s purse. The Third Way came into public’s view when it wrote a Wall Street Journal op-ed blasting Elizabeth Warren’s economic views as being unfriendly to Wall Street.

Jim Hightower says about the Third Way:

“…this group is to authentic Democratic Party principles what near beer is to stout — only, not as close. Third Way is just the same old Wall Street way. While it wears a Democratic mask, it pushes for policies that are Wall Street fantasies, including gutting and privatizing Social Security.”

The archive reports that when directly questioned about his involvement with the Third Way by Daily Call editor Mark Taylor at last year’s (5/14) Third Congressional District convention in Stevens Point, Congressman Kind said he was no longer a member and that he had recently resigned in disgust over the attack on Sen. Warren. As this Third Way link proves, well over a year later, Rep. Kind is still a c0-chair of a group that wants to gut and privatize Social Security.

April 2013 story: Rep. Kind supports chained CPI which will lower everyone’s future Social Security benefits. About chained CPI Paul Krugman had this to say:

“This is not good; there’s no good policy reason to be doing this, because the savings won’t have any significant impact on the underlying budget issues. And for many older people it would hurt.”

From a Dec. 2013 story Congressman Kind voted for H.R. 992 which amended a part of Dodd-Frank relating to federal assistance for swaps entities, thereby putting taxpayers on the hook for bailing out hundreds of billions in certain types of risky bank derivative swap deals.

Same 2013 story: Rep. Kind voted for the Retail Investor Protection Act. His vote delayed a new Department of Labor rule that would prevent financial advisers from charging exorbitant fees on American workers 401(K) plans and IRAs.

Same 2013 story: Rep. Kind voted to give federal employees a pay-cut disguised as increased “new employee” retirement contributions. Gov. Scott Walker has more than just trade in common with Congressman Kind; both used the same tricky tactic to cut people’s pay.

In Aug. 2014 Rep. Kind voted against  H.R. 4870, which would have ended the militarization of our local police.

Then later in Dec. of 2014 Rep. Kind voted for the CROMBUS bill which included a Citibank written provision to put taxpayers on the hook for even more tax-funded bailouts of reckless Wall Street bank mismanagement and criminal behavior.

In Jan of 2015 Rep. Kind voted to amend the Volker Rule to allow Wall Street banks to gamble with taxpayer-backed funds. He also voted to weaken oversight of the trillion dollar derivative market, which helped trigger the 2007 crash.

March 2015: Ron votes against a bill creating 8 million jobs.

April 2015: Congressman Kind makes the list of Democrats most likely to vote for Republican bills.

Also April 2015: Rep. Kind votes to help Warren Buffet give high interest rate loans with taxpayer backing.

And Daily Call readers that’s just the last few years. We can go back further. For example, Rep. Kind’s vote for the 4 year-old U.S.-Korea Trade treaty which, as of last year, has cost the U.S. 75,000 jobs and doubled the U.S. trade deficit with Korea to $12 billion.

Did we elect Ron Kind to vote for or against any of the above? No.

Did we elect him to vote away our rights with the Patriot Act, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and trade treaties? No.

Did we elect Ron so that he could retire to a cushy million dollar K Street job? No.

But let’s help him retire there next year.

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