Responsible Government

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Responsible Government

I believe we can all agree that government spending needs to be trimmed. As your congressman, I pledge to do that trimming with a scalpel rather than a sledge hammer; in a manner that maintains the safety net needed by the most vulnerable in society, while excising the earmarks, the fat, the loopholes, and the unnecessary subsidies. Earmarks ought to be a thing of the past. Open and transparent bills are what the American People demand and I’m all for this too.

The forefathers of our beloved US Constitution fought to create a government of the People, by the People, and for the People. Corporations including unions should not be able to lavish a candidate with contributions. After elected, such an individual would then feel obligated to work for his/her biggest contributors, instead of WE the People. As a patriotic, God loving, red-blooded American, I’m here to restore it back to its rightful owners.

With the rise of Occupy Wall Street, the 99%, and the Tea Party movements, one thing I find in common is that Corporations (be it companies or unions) have taken away our government from WE the People. Often, we feel that our Government is not working for us. Often, we feel that our Government is working for corporate special interests.

It shouldn’t be so hard for an American to start a small business when there are so many irrelevant regulations keeping them from turning a profit. It shouldn’t be that so many large multi-national businesses receive tax breaks for exporting our jobs overseas. It shouldn’t be that so many corporate conglomerates receive subsidies from us while they’re simultaneously having windfall profits. It shouldn’t be that the very bankers responsible for our Great Recession are living bailed out lifestyles totally without any punishment.

My opponent, Mimi Walters, has done nothing for our district or our nation for that matter to help reverse this dangerous trend. She has been in US Congress and California Senate and Assembly for more than a decade overseeing the takeover of our beloved country by these special interests. Government can grow bigger, as long as it is helping her special interest campaign contributors. Once more, she is not working for WE the People. Instead, she is working for her Wall Street and Billionaire Class campaign contributors. See which industries are Walters' largest contributors here!

Walters’ Voting/Support Record:

  • YES on bigger government for her special interests campaign contributors
  • YES on protecting subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • NO on ending oil subsidies and ending tax-breaks for large businesses
  • NOT standing up for WE the People

Varasteh’s Congressional Pledge:

  • Restore WE the People’s government back to her rightful owners
  • Election finance reform/Money out of politics
  • Keep corporations and unions out of elections
  • Lobbyist transparency
  • Bill transparency
  • Leaner government by eliminating earmarks, loopholes, and subsidies
  • Protect whistleblowers
  • Reform subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • Reform regulations that choke small and medium businesses from starting and growing
  • Standing up for WE the People
  • Not for sale

My opponent, Mimi Walters, has done nothing for our district or our nation for that matter to help reverse this dangerous trend. She has been in US Congress and California Senate and Assembly for more than a decade overseeing the takeover of our beloved country by these special interests. Government can grow bigger, as long as it is helping her special interest campaign contributors. Once more, she is not working for WE the People. Instead, she is working for her Wall Street and Billionaire Class campaign contributors. See which industries are Walters' largest contributors here!

Walters’ Voting/Support Record:

  • YES on bigger government for her special interests campaign contributors
  • YES on protecting subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • NO on ending oil subsidies and ending tax-breaks for large businesses
  • NOT standing up for WE the People

Varasteh’s Congressional Pledge:

  • Restore WE the People’s government back to her rightful owners
  • Election finance reform/Money out of politics
  • Keep corporations and unions out of elections
  • Lobbyist transparency
  • Bill transparency
  • Leaner government by eliminating earmarks, loopholes, and subsidies
  • Protect whistleblowers
  • Reform subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • Reform regulations that choke small and medium businesses from starting and growing
  • Standing up for WE the People
  • Not for sale

My opponent, Mimi Walters, has done nothing for our district or our nation for that matter to help reverse this dangerous trend. She has been in US Congress and California Senate and Assembly for more than a decade overseeing the takeover of our beloved country by these special interests. Government can grow bigger, as long as it is helping her special interest campaign contributors. Once more, she is not working for WE the People. Instead, she is working for her Wall Street and Billionaire Class campaign contributors. See which industries are Walters' largest contributors here!

Walters’ Voting/Support Record:

  • YES on bigger government for her special interests campaign contributors
  • YES on protecting subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • NO on ending oil subsidies and ending tax-breaks for large businesses
  • NOT standing up for WE the People

Varasteh’s Congressional Pledge:

  • Restore WE the People’s government back to her rightful owners
  • Election finance reform/Money out of politics
  • Keep corporations and unions out of elections
  • Lobbyist transparency
  • Bill transparency
  • Leaner government by eliminating earmarks, loopholes, and subsidies
  • Protect whistleblowers
  • Reform subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • Reform regulations that choke small and medium businesses from starting and growing
  • Standing up for WE the People
  • Not for sale

“Too Big to Fail” & 21st-Century Glass-Steagall

I’ve spent years fighting for a financial system that works for ordinary people, and not just for the top 1% of income earners. If banks are “too big to fail,” they have an incentive to make risky investments and are therefore too big to exist. Together with Senator Bernie Sanders and Senator Elizabeth Warren, I too sponsor reinstating the Glass-Steagall Act, which instituted regulations in the aftermath of the Great Depression in an attempt to avoid another economic disaster.

By reinstating a 21st-century Glass-Steagall, we will be separating commercial banking from investment banking which will buffer normal Americans from risky investments. We must break up the Big Banks! Banks that are “too big to fail” make risky investments because they know that the American taxpayer will bail them out — and are therefore too big to exist. I strongly support the Robin Hood Tax. We must place a tiny fraction of 1% tax on Wall Street Speculation. This changes the tax code to discourage short-term gambling and instead promote long-term investing.

Glass-Steagall was passed in 1933, in the wake of the Great Depression, in order to prevent banks from making risky investments with the savings deposits of average Americans and then falling back on federal deposit insurance when their bets go bad. Glass-Steagall was mostly repealed in 1999 when President Clinton signed the Financial Services Modernization Act. Many economists argue that its repeal contributed to the severity of the 2008 financial crisis.

When banks are so large that their bankruptcy would devastate the economy, the government is forced to bail them out. If banks know that they’ll be bailed out, they’ll chase profit by gambling and making risky investments knowing that they can’t really lose. The 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law defines these “big banks” as having at least $50 billion in assets.

Breaking up the biggest financial institutions would reduce the level of financial monopolization in America and the corresponding political influence of the largest banks. Too few banks control too much of our money. Not only is it risky for the reasons stated above, but it gives them even more influence in Congress. At the end of 2014, the largest four banks held 35% of all bank deposits. These same four banks spent at least $21 million lobbying the federal government in 2014.

Stock markets are intended to be an exchange where a company can sell ownership in return for working capital. In other words, it’s meant for companies to sell shares for cash that they then invest back in the business. But increasingly, the markets are used as an instrument to gain short-term profits by quickly trading stocks with tiny price differences and using other high-risk trading methods to make a quick return.

Taxing a financial transfer does disincentivize selling a stock or bond. However, the small percentage of the tax means that only trading on the smallest of margins is no longer profitable. This tax would target the high-frequency trading that uses these tiny margins for profit without having meaningfully invested in a company.

My opponent, Mimi Walters, has done nothing for our district or our nation for that matter to help reverse this dangerous trend. She has been in US Congress and California Senate and Assembly for more than a decade overseeing the takeover of our beloved country by these special interests. Government can grow bigger, as long as it is helping her special interest campaign contributors. Once more, she is not working for WE the People. Instead, she is working for her Wall Street and Billionaire Class campaign contributors. See which industries are Walters' largest contributors here!

Walters’ Voting/Support Record:

  • YES on bigger government for her special interests campaign contributors
  • YES on protecting subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • NO on ending oil subsidies and ending tax-breaks for large businesses
  • NOT standing up for WE the People

Varasteh’s Congressional Pledge:

  • Restore WE the People’s government back to her rightful owners
  • Election finance reform/Money out of politics
  • Keep corporations and unions out of elections
  • Lobbyist transparency
  • Bill transparency
  • Leaner government by eliminating earmarks, loopholes, and subsidies
  • Protect whistleblowers
  • Reform subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • Reform regulations that choke small and medium businesses from starting and growing
  • Standing up for WE the People
  • Not for sale

The Fed

The Federal Reserve System‍—‌also known as the Federal Reserve or simply the Fed‍—‌is the central banking system of the United States. It was created on December 23, 1913, with the enactment of the Federal Reserve Act in response to a series of financial panics (particularly the panic of 1907) that showed the need for central control of the monetary system if crises are to be avoided. Over the years, events such as the Great Depression in the 1930s and the Great Recession during the 2000s led to the expansion of the roles and responsibilities of the Federal Reserve System.

We must rein in the powers of this independent board and open its policies and operations to much greater outside scrutiny by at minimum, regular independent audits. I have utter disdain of Wall Street and the Federal Reserve’s coziness with the top executives of major banks and financial institutions that had to be bailed out by the Fed and the Treasury Department during the 2008 financial crisis.

Almost every one of the banks is bigger today than they were at the time of the crisis, and If any were to fail again, taxpayers could be on the hook for another bailout, perhaps a larger one this time. To rein in Wall Street, we should begin by reforming the Federal Reserve, which oversees financial institutions and which uses monetary policy to maintain price stability and full employment. Unfortunately, an institution that was created to serve all Americans has been hijacked by the very bankers it regulates.

The sad reality is that the Federal Reserve doesn’t regulate Wall Street. Wall Street regulates the Fed. It’s time to make banking work for the productive economy and for all Americans, not just a handful of wealthy speculators.

Far too much of the Fed’s business is conducted in secret. Along with Senator Bernie Sanders and former Congressman Ron Paul, I call for the public release of full and un-redacted transcripts of the Federal Open Market Committee, the chief policy-making group, within six months, instead of the customary five years. I believe, if we had made this reform in 2004, the American people would have learned about the housing bubble well in advance of the financial crisis. I also favor requiring a full, annual audit of the Fed’s operations by the Government.

My opponent, Mimi Walters, has done nothing for our district or our nation for that matter to help reverse this dangerous trend. She has been in US Congress and California Senate and Assembly for more than a decade overseeing the takeover of our beloved country by these special interests. Government can grow bigger, as long as it is helping her special interest campaign contributors. Once more, she is not working for WE the People. Instead, she is working for her Wall Street and Billionaire Class campaign contributors. See which industries are Walters' largest contributors here!

Walters’ Voting/Support Record:

  • YES on bigger government for her special interests campaign contributors
  • YES on protecting subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • NO on ending oil subsidies and ending tax-breaks for large businesses
  • NOT standing up for WE the People

Varasteh’s Congressional Pledge:

  • Restore WE the People’s government back to her rightful owners
  • Election finance reform/Money out of politics
  • Keep corporations and unions out of elections
  • Lobbyist transparency
  • Bill transparency
  • Leaner government by eliminating earmarks, loopholes, and subsidies
  • Protect whistleblowers
  • Reform subsidies and tax-breaks granted to large businesses
  • Reform regulations that choke small and medium businesses from starting and growing
  • Standing up for WE the People
  • Not for sale