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Dave Johnson
"Dave Johnson is a fantastic grandfather of the blogosphere." -- Mike Stark,

Dave Johnson is a Fellow with Campaign for America's Future and a Senior Fellow with Renew California.

Dave is founder and principal author at Seeing the Forest, and a blogger at Speak Out California. He is a frequent public speaker, talk-radio personality and a leading participant in the progressive blogging community.

Before starting Seeing the Forest, Dave had over 20 years of technology industry experience. Recently he helped co-found Carbon Tracing, Inc., the company developing the desktop systems to validate carbon trading in the US. He previously held senior industry positions including CEO and VP of Sales and Marketing. His earlier career included technical positions, including video game design at Atari and Imagic, and he was a pioneer in design and development of productivity and educational applications of personal computers. Send e-mail to Dave. Twitter:

Entries by Dave Johnson

How 'Citibank Budget' Push Foreshadows "Fast Track" for Trade Deals

(1) Comments | Posted December 17, 2014 | 9:34 PM

It is worth examining how the process was rigged to push that budget deal through Congress over the weekend that contained Citibank-written derivative deregulation and all kinds of other goodies for the rich and powerful. That's because the "cromnibus" formula will be formalized in the next big deal, in a...

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TPP Negotiators Hit With Protests That Media Don't Cover

(2) Comments | Posted December 9, 2014 | 12:33 PM

Shouldn't it be a trade violation to threaten to move someone's job to another country? Shouldn't we negotiate trade agreements that increase people's wages on both sides of a trade border? These are the kinds of agreements we would make if We the People were negotiating trade agreements with representatives...

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Is the Democratic Party Relevant Anymore?

(76) Comments | Posted December 1, 2014 | 6:04 PM

Many Democrats examining what happened in the 2014 midterms are asking, "What did the voters want?" But the right question is why only 36.4 percent of potential voters bothered to register and vote? Obviously Democrats did not give those voters a good enough reason to take the trouble. Is the...

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Here's What 60 Minutes Should Have Reported About Infrastructure

(7) Comments | Posted November 26, 2014 | 1:47 PM

60 Minutes ran a report Sunday, "Falling apart: America's neglected infrastructure," describing the seriousness and damage to the economy caused by our country's crumbling infrastructure.

Here are a few choice quotes, but really you should click through and watch the whole thing (and then come back...

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Give Americans a $2,000 Check From 'Deferred' Corporate Taxes

(2) Comments | Posted November 19, 2014 | 5:45 PM

U.S. multinational corporations are hoarding an estimated $2 trillion "offshore" to take advantage of a loophole in our tax laws. At our 35 percent top federal corporate tax rate, that represents up to $700 billion in taxes owed but "deferred" because they are "offshore." This is not imaginary or...

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DC Strikers Demand 'More Than the Minimum' for Federal Workers

(0) Comments | Posted November 14, 2014 | 4:31 PM

Should our government be for good jobs with good wages and benefits -- the things most of We the People want in our lives? Or should it be for bad jobs, low wages, no benefits -- the very things that a wealthy few (who like to call themselves "job creators")...

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2014 Election Lesson: Politics Is About Delivering for Your Constituents

(0) Comments | Posted November 5, 2014 | 4:14 PM

Politics is about delivering for your constituents. Underneath it all, this election was a statement by people against an economy that is not working for them.

We've heard the story but here it is again.

  • Most people say the country is still in a recession as far...

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Why You Shouldn't Be 'Optimistic' About Corporate 'Tax Reform'

(6) Comments | Posted October 3, 2014 | 11:17 AM

Washington elites are "optimistic" about another "reform." That's never good.

According to an article in The Hill this week, "WH adviser 'optimistic' for corporate tax reform":

A top economic official in the White House on Tuesday expressed confidence that the next Congress can pass corporate tax reform.

... Obama...

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Reagan Set Up the Death of the Middle Class, But China Was the Clincher

(31) Comments | Posted September 30, 2014 | 2:10 PM

Campaign for America's Future's 2010 Reagan Revolution Home To Roost series, especially the post "Reagan Revolution Home To Roost -- In Charts," described the beginning of the great decoupling of the American economy from the middle class.

The summary:


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Who Gets Rich Harvesting Burger King and the American Economy?

(3) Comments | Posted September 22, 2014 | 5:28 PM

As fast-food workers across the country strike for decent pay, Burger King is still preparing to abandon the U.S. as its home country. How does a burger company get flipped like this and who gets rich when it happens?

Burger King is a company whose products encourage obesity, heart...

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Corporate Courts -- A Big Red Flag on 'Trade' Agreements

(3) Comments | Posted September 15, 2014 | 10:27 PM

Think about everything you understood about our system of government here in the United States. We're  governed under a document that starts with the words, "We the People." Right? When We the People agree that something should done to make our lives better, it's supposed to get done. Right?


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Why Fight for Unions? So We Can Fight an Economy Rigged Against Us

(13) Comments | Posted August 29, 2014 | 2:20 PM

The other day I wrote about how FedEx has been pretending that their employees are not employees, which gets around labor standards for things like overtime, family leave and the rest.

This misclassification game is just one way that big companies have been rigging the rules to give themselves...

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Now It's Burger King Renouncing US Citizenship -- Let's Eat Somewhere Else

(9) Comments | Posted August 27, 2014 | 5:30 PM

Burger King is the latest company announcing plans to renounce its U.S. citizenship in order to dodge taxes. It plans to buy Tim Hortons and then pretend Tim Hortons bought them so they can claim to be Canadian. (Tim Hortons renounced its own U.S. citizenship in 2009 and moved their...

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Are American Corporations Really Less Competitive Because of Taxes?

(23) Comments | Posted August 20, 2014 | 12:40 PM

Corporate tax rates used to top out at 52.8 percent. Later rates were lowered to 48 percent and then 46 percent. Then in 1986 corporations complained that this (lowered) rate made them "uncompetitive" and demanded "corporate tax reform." Because job creators. So the rate was lowered to 35 percent....

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Three Charts to Email to Your Right-Wing Brother-In-Law (Updated)

(616) Comments | Posted August 9, 2014 | 2:31 PM

Problem: Your right-wing brother-in-law is plugged into the FOX-Limbaugh lie machine, and keeps sending you emails about "Obama spending" and "Obama deficits" and how the "stimulus" just made things worse.

Solution: Here are three "reality-based" charts to send to him. These charts show what actually happened.


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Perhaps We Need Corporate 'Loyalty Oaths'

(81) Comments | Posted August 6, 2014 | 2:40 AM

Several American corporations are using a tax loophole scheme called "inversion" to get out of being American corporations obligated to pay American corporate tax rates. They buy or merge with a non-U.S. corporation (usually located in a tax haven), pretend they are a subsidiary to that corporation and renounce their...

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Backed By China? House Republicans Block Critical 'Make It In America' Bill

(1) Comments | Posted July 28, 2014 | 5:33 PM

Far-right groups said that the American government securing necessary materials for American companies to manufacture is "interference with the free market." Seriously, are they funded by China?

Last week one more example of Republican obstruction occurred -- blockage of an important "Make It In America" bill -- and one more...

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A Simplified Way to Tax Multinational Corporations

(2) Comments | Posted July 15, 2014 | 11:40 AM

You've been hearing a lot about corporations "renouncing their U.S. citizenship" through "tax inversions." This is when a company buys or merges with a non-U.S. company and claims to no longer be based in the U.S. to get out of paying certain taxes. The company does, however, keep the...

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The Democrats' Agenda Should Be to Fix the Trade Deficit

(11) Comments | Posted June 26, 2014 | 1:34 PM

There is no way around it: There are three issues on people's minds as we go into the midterm elections: jobs, jobs and jobs.

Since the 2008 financial crash -- actually, since Reagan was elected -- most of the gains from our economy have gone to the 1 percent...

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Will We Let Congress Hand Billion$ More to Big Corporations?

(16) Comments | Posted June 11, 2014 | 3:56 PM

This one is simply outrageous. Corporations currently owe up to $700 billion in unpaid, "deferred" taxes. The country needs the money -- partly because these companies owe so much in taxes. Which of the following choices should the country make?

1. Tell the companies to pay up what they owe,...

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