The Story of Leonard Abess, Banker: The face of philanthropy in Florida

February 26, 2010

(Counterpunch) In hisĀ first speech to Congress, President Obama briefly bonded with popular outrage at Wall Street’s excess and greed. He picked a counter-note from South Florida: “hope is found in unlikely places,” the president said, “I think Leonard Abess, the bank president from Miami who reportedly cashed out of his company, took a $60 million bonus and gave it out to all 399 people who worked for him, plus another 72 who used to work for him.” Read the rest of this entry »


The Potemkin Village Economy: Gridlock is Good for Business

February 26, 2010

(Counterpunch) US politics are in gridlock because elected officials, Democrats and Republicans alike, are fighting to revive an economic model based on construction, development and housing. Instead of breaking with the past– and confessing that trillions of taxpayer handouts have been given to banks to shore up a failed economic model– elected officials in the US are maintaining a steadfast silence to paper over their ruined circular logic. Read the rest of this entry »


Watching Avatar in Miami: Where Natures Saves the World … from Us

February 1, 2010

(Counterpunch) In a Miami IMAX theater, I recently watched James Cameron’s “Avatar”. Judging from the cheers at the end, even teenagers yearn for a time when rites of passage meant embracing our connectedness with the web of life. Last week, the worldwide box office total for the movie approached a boffo $2 billion. So what conclusions to draw from what could be the highest grossing movie in history?

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