Archive for 2012

Today the GOP is writing it’s own obituary.

Here’s what I know as fact about the fiscal cliff negotiations: President Obama offered to limit tax increases to households earning more than $400K a year. The Democrats agreed to spending cuts, not quite as draconian as the Tea Party demanded, but they also indicated there was room for negotiation on the cuts. Speaker of the House Boehner went back to the Tea People controlling the House and tried to put together a plan that would lift the tax increase threshold to $1 million a year.   They realized that was going nowhere in their party and attempted to shift negotiations towards using the adjusted CPI for Social Security.  John McCain, now considered a moderate, said “it won’t look good if we are advocating tax increases and social security cuts”.  Again, no movement and surprise… The Tea Party obstructed.  Which part?  All of it.  They want across the board, draconian spending cuts and NO tax increases on anyone. Again, realistic, intellectual thinking at it’s finest. Meanwhile rank and file GOP conservatives can do nothing. Their party is still held hostage by the radical faction in their ranks.

Grover Norquist will be proud of these obstructionists for hold their ground on their tax pledge. The majority of Americans will not.  50% of Republicans agree with the Presidents approach to revenue according to a Dec. 7th Bloomberg poll.  Staunch Tea People will make these arguments:

  1. The federal deficit is solely a spending problem.  It is not.  Every merited, non-biased, international economist on the planet has acknowledged it is a spending AND revenue problem.  This is where the GOP fails.  They do not want to acknowledge that revenue is required.  Specifically they do not want to acknowledge that revenue is required from top earners.   Their claim that revenue should come from “the 50% of Americans who pay no federal income taxes” is juvenile and hollow.  Why do people rob banks?  That’s where the money is.  Why should the wealthy pay an increased and proportionate percentage of taxes on their income (i.e. pre Bush tax rates)?  Same reason.
  2. Raising taxes on millionaires will kill their ambition and discourage them from working.  Never mind it didn’t discourage them prior to the Bush cuts they now enjoy.
  3. Raising taxes on the wealthy will punish successful people for being successful.  Just like they were punished via bullwhip during the Clinton Administration.
  4. Raising taxes will stop “job creation”.  You know, it will put a stop to all the job creation they have embarked on during the last six years they’ve enjoyed these tax cuts.   This lie is starting to tell itself.
  5. And finally they will argue “It’s Obama’s fault”.  One of the things I get the best chuckle out of is reading the GOP remarks calling Obama and obstructionist.  This is a clear indication you are reading or discussing the fiscal cliff negotiations with someone who is not paying attention and/or is loaded with bias.  Democrats have offered concessions and offered to negotiate further spending cuts.  The GOP has been able to offer nothing thanks to lack of agreement within their own ranks.   Many of those on the far right will not agree with Obama on any initiative simply for the sake of posturing and obstruction.

The worst part of this for the GOP is the comments I’m hearing from those claiming to be lifelong conservatives.  They do not recognize their own party anymore and are prepared to change their voter registration cards.  Sad they are being forced to leave their party because it has been hijacked by Libertarians who refuse to acknowledge their true political identity for the sake of compounding ideological influence.  Today the GOP as we know it will be dead as moderate Republicans will no longer have a voice.   Just like Democrats and the majority of legislation over the past six years they have been stifled by the group known as the Tea Party.  I will always refer to them as Tea People or Tea Baggers because they are in fact not a registered political party.   They did not ride in on the coat tails of true Republicans.   They tore them off and stole them.

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Conservative Mormon spreading values through actions, not words…

What kind of constituency elects a guy named Crapo anyway?

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How to generate trillions in revenue over a decade:

• $3 trillion: Enact a modest financial transaction tax: 0.5 percent on the purchase of stocks (0.25 percent for the buyer and the seller) and tax bonds and derivatives at lower rates.

• $1.7 trillion: Millionaires and billionaires pay a lower effective tax rate than working people. Rescind the Bush tax cuts for the top two percent; tax capital gains at the same rate as income (money making money is still income).

• $1 trillion: Crack down on offshore tax shelters.

• $580 billion: End tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas.

• $500 billion: Establish a currency manipulation fee on China and other countries. The Economic Policy Institute has estimated that it would create one million jobs.

• $300 billion: Establish a progressive estate tax on inherited wealth of more than $3.5 million.

• $110 billion: End tax breaks and subsidies for profitable oil, gas, and coal companies.

• Many corporations pay little or no tax. End tax loopholes, subsidies, bailouts, giveaways, and other corporate welfare.

• Creates new tax brackets for incomes over $3 million with a top tax rate of 40 percent.

• End the carried interest loophole for private equity and hedge fund managers.

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Lesser of Two Evils

“someone spotted an open-air trailer near an early polling site in Goldsboro with President Barack Obama and other elected officials hung in effigy”

True story: Anyone I’ve had conversations with this month can confirm that until this morning I had not decided who I was going to vote for today. I despise the Obamacare mandate that much. I even told my 14 year-old niece I had not decided as of last night. This morning I read the the quote above in a news article about electioneering. It made up my mind. Sure, lots of people despised Bush but this has gone beyond comparison. The volume of hate coming from the right in this election has reached a point that may require therapy for many conservatives. I can’t be part of it.

So all of you who thought you were doing your cause any good repeatedly telling me how vile Obama is and that you’d like to see him “burned in the street” (Scotty) well, thank you. Any policy of Obama’s that I may have found harmful or offensive could not make me vote against him if it means reinforcing or supporting the persistent, vitriolic messages coming from Republicans in this election. It’s honestly made me question the sanity of many people I know. I realize it’s an odd factor to weigh my decision on but I’m not going to vote for the candidate that is the lesser of two evils. I’m voting for the segment of society that is proving to be the lesser of two evils.

This election has exposed the true sentiments of many Americans. We’re in trouble and politicians have nothing to do with it. Check yourselves. One man in one office did not put you where you are today, causing you such anguish. Another man won’t fix it either. Your GED isn’t going to turn into a college degree if Romney wins. Your old pants won’t fit no matter how many pairs you put on. If you lost your job Mitt isn’t going to hire you. These are your problems, not Barack Obama’s. It’s time for the party of “personal responsibility” to quit whining and exercise some. You can start by telling your fellow conservatives to quit burning scarecrows of duly elected officials in effigy.

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Here’s your trickle down…

“Eighty percent of the state’s 115 school districts said they’ve had trouble finding instructors licensed to teach high school mathematics, while about two-thirds of the state’s local schools reported having trouble finding high school science and special education teachers.”

EMERY P. DALESIO – Associated Press

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Please help put an end to the GOP multiple taxation lie.

An “Anonymous Coward” posted the following ranting comment on an article this morning about “asset protection” AKA “hiding money”.

“The money I make is taxed( once). The money my money makes is taxed.(Twice) When I die my money that I leave to my heirs is taxed.(Thrice) All to support fools who make no money!”

I wish I could get every GOP parrot and talking bobble head to read and comprehend the following explanation. It will stop them from either speaking ignorantly or lying once and for all on the topic of inheritance and capital gains tax. Something they clearly don’t know a damn thing about or pretend not to for the sake of a straw man argument. Let’s break it down:

“The money my money makes is taxed.(Twice)”

…and the money your wife makes is taxed, the money a second job makes is taxed. Doesn’t matter if your money earns money, your labor earns money or if someone gives you money cause they like your smile. It’s all income, all taxable.

“When I die my money that I leave to my heirs is taxed.(Thrice)”

Not on the federal level…only if it’s many, many millions. Or if you inherit property that produces income such as interest, dividends, or rent. Then only the income produced from those investments starting at the time on your death certificate is taxable against the receiver. As of 2010, 11 states assess tax on inherited money including Oregon, Tennessee, Nebraska, Connecticut, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, Iowa, Pennsylvania and Indiana. Sorry if you live in one. Tell your heirs to move.

You see, the word is INCOME. Everyone is taxed on personal income, not on the amount of money you have, where you put it or who you give it to. From this day forward you can stop repeating hollow lies and go forth informed about the difference between principal investment dollars and real income.

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They’re doing it wrong. Successfully. Signed, the GOP

There is a country where the majority of workers are unionized with good pay and universal health care. Their unemployment rate is 3.4% today. Better than the United States unemployment rate at any time during the last 63 years. The unemployed are tested for skills by the government and retrained or educated when necessary at tax payer expense. Along with the world’s leading wages they have high taxes, a strong banking industry, loaning to most of Europe, and they are the worlds second largest exporter, bested only by China. If you haven’t figured it out yet it’s Germany. According to the GOP principals they’re doing it all wrong. In fact, the GOP’s core ideologies of limited to no government, low taxes and little or no private business or banking regulation is the exact opposite of what made Germany the wealthiest nation in Europe which is still speeding up while the US economy continues to stagnate. Just more proof that everyone in the world has it all wrong except for the vocal minority in the US clinging to their GOP ideals of God and guns against the evil government, the source of all problems.

“Free your mind, your ass will follow.” – Funkadelic’s 1970

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End all US Presence in the Middle East

The only defense money that should be spent is that used to defend the interests of the United States, it’s sovereign territories and it’s borders. Let the middle east destroy itself from the inside out without any more US ties to these countries at all.

There is no logic to continued presence in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Pakistan or any other region of the world hostile to the US. Anyone who thinks these areas can be civilized to the point of opening a Wal-Mart and a Chik-fil-A is unfit to serve in any leadership role as a representative of US interests.

End the illogical insanity that began 11 years ago. Bring our troops home and use those human and monetary resources to protect the US. The US owes nothing to these regions of the world that will not benefit us under their most optimal cultural conditions.

What is stopping this? The military industrial complex looking for excursions and interventions anywhere in the world engaged in conflict. Conflicts that have no bearing on US interests.

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Chick-fil-A’s business accumen is pathetic.

I haven’t commented one time about this Chick-fil-A mess. I’ve considered a ridiculous display of social stigma from both sides but I’ve decided to comment on the business side of the drama: Financial support and appreciation for business causes are usually momentary. Boycotts tend to stick around. While these restaurants might be experiencing a short term revenue increase because of the demographic attention, over time they will most likely see a revenue decrease per location because of an ideological statement.

Of course the CEO of Chick-fil-A is free to say anything he wants about gays, lesbians, marriage. I don’t recall hearing anyone say he wasn’t free to speak his mind despite the outpouring to “support his freedom” to say what he believes. Why didn’t other enterprise business owners and CEO’s join his chorus if they believe the same? Because they are smarter business people. Nothing smokes of business smarts like offending an entire segment of society while using your brand as a soap box. It was the dumbest business move I’ve seen in a while. Smart executives leave the corporate ideological relationships to the media.

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Election Update..

At this point it seems that if Obama gets re-elected then we get a Chicago slime ball half the country likes, if Romney gets elected we get a Corporate slime ball nobody likes but half the population is willing to stomach because they hate the other guy. Oh ya America, we’re on a winning path now.

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