February 10th, 2009
01:06 PM ET

Democrats want monopolies

Alex Castellanos
CNN Contributor

Two Congressmen walk into a bar to watch President Obama's first prime-time press conference. The Democrat says to the Republican....

D: Just watch the president tonight and you'll see how to get this economy back on track. Monopolies.

R: Monopolies?

D: Monopolies so big they will shame Parker Brothers and make them put the board game in a bigger box. Monopolies so huge, they'll make railroad tycoon Cornelius Vanderbilt look like a push-cart operator.

R: Why monopolies?

D: In these desperate times, we can't afford to let Americans choose inefficient cars or wasteful health care. We can't let innovation run wild on Wall Street or Main Street. We have to make sure Americans are secure in their health care and jobs, their incomes and energy.

To serve the greater good, we have to organize America's economy so it achieves the best possible ends for all Americans. We can't leave that to chance. Who knows what might happen if individual Americans make those choices in a free market and organize themselves?

R: A little less freedom, a lot more organization, all for the collective good?


Filed under: Democrats • Raw Politics • Republicans
soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. Michael C. McHugh

    We've had a long free market Gold Rush for the last 30 years, and those always end in a capitalist crash and consolidation. I just hope that the people don't have to fund this–let the capitalists fund their own mergers and buy up their own fake assets, while government should concentrate on the public welfare.

    February 11, 2009 at 11:59 am |
  2. Luis

    Democrats want a New World Order.

    February 11, 2009 at 1:12 am |
  3. J.E. de Sequera

    Shakespeare was wrong, we do have to "shoot the messenger". Don't any of you have any capability for independent thought? Wall Street and the financial press corps have the most unbelievable lemming mentality I've ever seen.

    My solution? Get rid of the two party system, where ideology replaces common sense. Make journalists reponsible for consequenses of stupid and irresponsible reporting. Most of all NO MORE ANALYZING from incompetent TV analysts where the idiots lead the idiots. Finally, break up the big banks, so none of them become too big to fail. And, throw the cheating financial execs into prison... better yet why not a Guantanamo style prison for them... no consitutional protection. C'mon Mr. Republican, isn't that your American Way?

    February 10, 2009 at 11:46 pm |
  4. Jake M.

    Read the stimulus bill. Everything from page 251 that i could read was perfect the way it is. Only thing i can think of that should be possibly corrected is how the grants are being distributed, kind of inflated numbers for grants. After page 251 is pretty confusing, it doesn't explain the rest of the where the money is going. Obama should consider cutting out the medical portion of the package and worry about that at a later time than putting it in now.

    February 10, 2009 at 11:35 pm |
  5. William of Iowa

    That was a good joke. I enjoy your humor.

    February 10, 2009 at 11:34 pm |
  6. Pat Canada

    Mr Castellanos what are you talking about? The biggest Monopoly that ever controlled a Nation thankfully left the building last month! Have you forgotten the Trillions Republicans spent on the Iraq War? No WMD's or Osama Found Yet! The Billion Pakistan received so they'd play nice? The millions of innocent military and civilian lives lost with absolutely no justification? Where was your conscience then? Do you realize that other Nations have also paid the price for the Republican Arrogance and mismanagement over the past eight long years and will now like Americans continue to pay the price due to Republican mismanagement throwing us into the worst economic crisis in decades? If your trying like Republicans to pass the buck I have to tell you, your wasting your time. Even we looking in from afar can easily ascertain truth from fiction! And we thank God HE has finally arrived!

    February 10, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  7. Dina

    It is beyond crazy the the republican party can't get it together and stop fighting like children. Not to mention I am beyond sick of listening to how we are becoming Europe. Lets see they all have decent health care, they live longer, have better health..maybe we have something to learn from their life style. These people who elected bush not once but twice and still trying to follow those tactics are not bright.. have they heard trying the same thing over and over again is the definition of insanity

    February 10, 2009 at 9:03 pm |
  8. Pattie from Pittsburgh

    Mr. Castellanos, your free market just sucked 1/3 of my pension away. Your republican principle of "let's protect the rich and let the middle and lower classes fend for themselves "is turning us into a third world nation with very rich and the poor. I know where your salary puts you and it may not be a monopoly but it is a minority.

    February 10, 2009 at 8:16 pm |
  9. william , Oregon

    My idea is all those in congress that vote against the plan. Refuse the money for your states. That way their part can be removed from the budget. Any benefit to their states will just trickle down.

    February 10, 2009 at 7:46 pm |
  10. Terry

    Alex C.....you are so right.... they just stuck us in the Health Bill Saturday...Senator Spector did not even know the crap that was stuck in.
    Alex...I see it coming down the road..... that's how Pelosi will pay for it... SCHIP she funded with a $1 tax on cigarettes....what happens when we don't buy our cigarettes...they can get them from Mexico. She will then start taxing people who want an SUV instead of small killing machine....Oregan wants to put a chip in your car to charge you on how many miles you drive.... New York raised all soft drinks $.50 to pay for something...but you buy water...no extra tax. Welcome California taxes ...
    Remember....the states with the largest unemployment are California, Illinois, New York, Michigan and Florida....illegal aliens.

    February 10, 2009 at 7:11 pm |
  11. Annie Kate

    Monopolies? In the communication industry we were already well on our way to this before Obama even tossed his hat in the ring – years ago AT&T was broken up into the Baby Bells – but slowly and surely AT&T has regathered its "children" to itself. The last I saw was that Bell South merged with AT&T.....that merger also got Cingular wireless as well. What was old is new again....and this was on the GOP watch.

    February 10, 2009 at 7:08 pm |
  12. Jeff

    No monopolies. Just ct taxes. Heck why not eliminate all federal taxes?
    Leave the national defense and national disaster recovery to the private sector. What companies will set in to defend our boarders, fight our enemies and aid in when disaster strikes. If we assume that there are companies out there willing do these things, how do know that they are doing job in the right way?

    February 10, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  13. Norma Larro

    I am not American nor do I live in American but have been observing what is going on in America so can someone please relay to the Republicans blocking the Stimulus Plan that they need to get their priorities right. Remind them that they are now in opposition and for good reason and also remind them that they are the cause of this global financial meltdown. They did not seem to have this pang of conscience with the prior government over the past eight years, so why now? Have they calculated how much the Iraq fiasco passing for a war have actually cost the American people, and contributed to the mess we are in now.

    It seems to me that bi-partisan to Republicans me we control the details and get the credit and you accommodate. Otherwise what is this fight about, the ongoing endless debate the robocalls is shameful, who are these politicians serving anyway are they upset because they did not get to write the Bill – so they don't want to play, is that it? Do they not realize that their fellow Americans are suffering and some are in dire straits. If it is socialistic for the government to help them, then so be it. The Republicans should also be made to understand that they have a vested interest in working with the party in power on behalf of all the American people, the electorate, to stabilize the American economy because it is not only democrats that are suffering. I would also be nice to see a real bi-partisan effort to get the American economic machine working again on behalf of the American people.

    Enough of this red/blue rubbish this is the time for all good men and women to come to the aid of their country. Remember Nero, the one who fiddled while Rome burned! Have we not learned the lessons of history? When this mess has been fixed they have my permission to go back to sulking because it seems that in opposition that is what they do best.


    February 10, 2009 at 5:58 pm |
  14. Ryan, Portland OR

    This is the worst written thing I've read...
    "we can’t afford to let Americans choose inefficient cars or wasteful health care." -I have no idea what you are talking about with the cars – really... and Health Care, last time I checked I didn't have a choice of what plan I get. I get whatever someone (my employer) is willing to provide. and your other statement,

    "We can’t let innovation run wild on Wall Street or Main Street." NO Dork, that's what's been happening for the past 15 years, and the only thing innovative about it was how they came up with new ways to further indebt us while we got high on new cars, McMansions, and house maids for all! I squarely place this mess on corporate America and their horrible business plan which REFUSES to take into account market saturation! Any business model can't continue to grow forever and ever – you are going to reach a point where you basically are as big as you can be. For the finance field, an ounce (or even a pound) of regulation doesn't equate to the demise of the Free Market system. It slows it growth and stops it from self destruction.

    But you already know all this. You just needed something crazy to say to give the fallen mighty some straw to grasp.

    February 10, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  15. karen-phoenix

    Mr. Bush left us trillions of dollars in debt, 4000 American soldiers DEAD and at least 100,000 Iraqis DEAD!!! What is wrong with you??
    PRESIDENT OBAMA has an enormous task ahead of him and ALL the republicans had better just say "thank you" for cleaning up the mess we left!!! OR there will be NO republican party come 2010!
    I know because I have been a die hard republican for 40 years but after what Bush did, I donated to and voted for President Barack Obama and never in my life have I had a picture of a president on a wall in my house. President Obama and his family are on my refrigerator, cabinet door, over my computer, etc. DO YOU UNDERSTAND what has happened to the spoiled, rich boys of the republican party?? NO MORE!!! My Dad had a picture of Eisenhower and Lincoln on the wall and I think President Obama may just out do them!

    February 10, 2009 at 4:09 pm |
  16. earle,florida

    In the cuurent situation most americans are in today,I'd say alot would rather relocate to a socialist,or even communist government having a better chance of survival! The Republican's, (my interpretation only, "Politburo") have taken a diversified/homogenized class of citizens,and degraded them into peasants! The Kingdom's all ,with their opaque Castle's dictate to the masses restraint,guised in decadence for their fellow brethren! Our very "Democracy"as we have known it, is toddling on, "the recieving end of a falling sword",with the heavy hand of greed slicing,and dicing our heritage. People, "stop using your eyes as ears",and your voices as your ass! Stop looking for leadership,when you look at it every day in the mirror,believe in yourselves,...

    February 10, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  17. Jenifer

    I'm nonpartisan, so listen up folks.

    1. Enough with the party line focus, please. It isn't helping.

    2. Stop looking backwards. That isn't helping.

    3. Focus on the facts:

    Some people in our economy are really hurting and need governmental assistance; others do not. We can all agree about that.

    Government should work together (that is called a 50/50 split in case anyone needs help in knowing what bipartisan really means). We should all be able to agree about that too.

    Government should limit the bill to strictly address what needs to be done to help the poorest among us and let those of us who have jobs and sufficient incomes rethink our own frivilous spending and houses full of unnecessary luxuries. Some may disagree with this, but it is just the ones who are greedy. If you don't need it, you shouldn't get it. Plain and simple.

    Government should not try to expand, create new programs or build new buildings or ports right now. Fortune 500 companies set a good example usually in this regard. If they have money they spend it, if they don't they don't expand.

    Government should repair bad bridges and schools that absolutely need it. This saves lives (remember the falling bridges) and this keeps our children in properly ventilated and heat-equipped schools.

    No new cars for government. None of us are buying any. Am I right?

    Congress needs to stop fighting and start investigating and eliminating where all our previous monies are going and how they are being used. That is really why we are in the mess we are in....DON'T bring up party talk...just accept it takes two to tangle and no one party is to blame.

    And start with that National Science foundation, since they are the ones who had employees watching porn online while on the job for 20 hrs a week. That can't be necessary or productive.

    February 10, 2009 at 2:48 pm |
  18. R.B

    You mean to say that the FAT CATS on Wall Street and elsewhere in CEO silos haven't been making their own choices, hoarding all the profits, and organzing themselves for the past eight years in such a way as to break the back of the U.S. economy?? You mean to say that when the last adminsitrations rolled back our civil liberties they were actually giving us more freedom 'for own own good" because they knew best which freedoms we deserved amd which we didn't?
    It sounds like pay to play to me. It sounds like spending is MORE THAN OKAY when the failed, right-wing radical policies of the last eight years are being advanced. I think we need more Americanism in this country and less ideological hypocrisy—because that's ALL IT IS.

    February 10, 2009 at 1:36 pm |
  19. Mary V., Salt Lake City, UT

    Mr. Castellanos, you are such a cynic. I will ask you the same question I have asked all the far-right-folks:

    WHERE were the so-called-fiscal-conservatives when Bush was spending our Nation into oblivion? When Bush was doubling our nation debt?????

    February 10, 2009 at 1:31 pm |