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(rps76) - F
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/11/2012 21:35:30 MDT Print View

Who else is voting with me?

R&R2012

Brian UL
(MAYNARD76)

Locale: New England
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/11/2012 22:09:36 MDT Print View

obrom

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/11/2012 22:38:20 MDT Print View

Romney is just a flip floppity republicrat.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/11/2012 23:23:36 MDT Print View



If that were Obama, few would fuss over his birth certificate.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/11/2012 23:47:18 MDT Print View

Romney has converted me to a Democrat.

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/11/2012 23:53:06 MDT Print View

As far as I'm concerned, it's "A plague on both your houses!" If I can't find a decent third party candidate, I will write in a vote for my dog (the only candidate who stands squarely on all four feet!). (My state will go Democrat no matter how I vote, so it doesn't matter whether or not I even vote.)

There is precedent for this; I believe it was back in the 1950's that a city in Brazil, whose population was dissatisfied with all the candidates, elected their zoo's rhinoceros mayor.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/11/2012 23:59:05 MDT Print View

It's the end of the 80 year economic cycle. No side wants to hold the bag.

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Brilliant on 08/12/2012 01:10:14 MDT Print View

Don't underestimate the ignorance of the American electorate, lots of people will support Romney and Ron Paul Ryan.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Brilliant on 08/12/2012 03:39:07 MDT Print View

Ron Paul Ryan? What does that even mean?

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 08:12:47 MDT Print View

"It's the end of the 80 year economic cycle. No side wants to hold the bag."

Is it also a 80 year political cycle?

In the 1920s the wealthy had a larger share of the pie. "The Gilded Age". Then there was an economic crash. Then people figured out they were being taken advantage of.

Then things flipped with FDR. People had a "we could do anything" attitude. Programs like the GI Bill paid for people's college education which produced the high tech/computer revolution of the late 1900s.

FDRs first few years in 1930s were touchy. No immediate flip. Sort of like we've experienced so far.

This time there's no WWII that galvanized our opinions. There are cases in history where the pendulum doesn't flip and that society fades.

"May you live in interesting times"

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 08:28:25 MDT Print View

Unless the president drops dead (and both candidates look pretty healthy), the vice president has pretty much zero effect politically. He/she is expected to support the president, attend state funerals around the globe and hopefully keep his foot out of his/her mouth. Oh, yes, to vote in case of a tie in the Senate, which rarely happens.

For those who find at least some of Ryan's ideas interesting, the only effect of this selection is to remove him from Congress to a place where he will either be a nonentity (if Romney wins) or out of public life altogether (if Obama wins).

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 09:43:37 MDT Print View

"Unless the president drops dead (and both candidates look pretty healthy), the vice president has pretty much zero effect politically"

Choosing Sarah Palin had a large effect

Some people thought she was inexperienced and just a pretty faced zealot

Other people thought she was a bold choice with strong conservative values that would get the woman vote that was behind Hillary

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 09:58:25 MDT Print View

Mary, you are wrong about the Vice Pres. Romney is taking on Ryan's economic plan of cutting medicade, changing social security etc. He has a lot of say in this election. This move was to galvanize the far right and Tea Party Members. His choice was significant. Will I vote for those two???? If you put a gun to my head I will

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 10:00:52 MDT Print View

"As far as I'm concerned, it's "A plague on both your houses!" If I can't find a decent third party candidate,"

This is my day to disagree with my friend Mary : )

There is a huge difference between the two parties, they want us to think that, get depressed, and not vote

Democrats tried to get through a bill that required that people and corporations that contribute to political speech have to be publically disclosed. We should at least know who's buying off the government. The Rs fillibustered it.

Rs got us into two wars that are a large part of the deficit. Ds "ended" Iraq war (although we're still there but at least much reduced). There is a plan to end Afganistan war. The Libya war was short and somewhat successful. We have avoided an Iran war.

Ds ended "don't ask don't tell". Obama said he was in favor of gAy marriage. Then black religious leaders were forced to do the same.

Obama Care reduced the deficit from Medicare prescription which was another huge part of the deficit.

The Ds are pushing the "Buffet Rule" which would tax at 30% income over $250K - restore a bit of fairness. And eliminating the "Bush tax cuts" for over $250K. And other attempts to restore fairness. This is another part of ending deficit.

The economic collapse was prevented although the recovery is mediocre. It's difficult for the Ds to do more when the Rs say their #1 priority is for Obama not to be re-elected.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 12:01:48 MDT Print View

I am with Mary.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 13:01:20 MDT Print View

If anyone cares.....

http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/paul-ryan-romney-vp-pick-11562917#ixzz23H02Kn6U

Or this


http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2012/08/06/120806fa_fact_lizza

Edited by kennyhel77 on 08/12/2012 13:05:18 MDT.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 18:44:32 MDT Print View

IMHO you look foolish trying to support either side. It all comes down to power and control. Neither party is really concerned about making the right decisions to fix the problems. At the end of the day I think we are picking the lesser of the two parties.

I personally will pick the Rep ticket not because of what they are going to do, but because of my concerns with the dems the past 4 years.

1. Obama put together a bi-partism committee to address the budget deficit. By far the best approach to resolving the issue. Didn't react to a single item. Just ignored all the hard work.
2. Has NO interest in addressing entitlement programs.
3. Total lack of leadership. Go ahead and say the Rep House is in the way. A good leader is able to overcome that. If the only way he can become a good leader is to control all of Congress, then anybody can do that.
4. Total lack of transparency (something he promised). Fast and Furious, Intel leaks, etc.
5. Totally anti business unless you are an union business. As a small business owner I live the effects of his policy.
6. Big government is just not better. They have no track record of doing anything right except building a Great Military. If anyone thinks the healthcare act will cost what they say is just being fooled. I will bet you anything that in 20 years the cost will far exceed any estimate they are projecting. Really just think about it. Every government expenditure has a budget associated with it. How many times have they stayed within the budget. Both parties are to blame.
7. He has a strategy to pit the social classes against each other. It is bad to be successful and make any money. BTW what is fair share anyway. How do you determine that number.
8. His campaign strategy is awful. Why do I care what Rommey's tax return looks like? The IRS is responsible for determining if he paid the correct taxes based on the tax law. He is just looking for material to bash him. Why don't he focus on what he is going to do instead of just looking for trash. Chicago politics.

On the flip side:
1. Ryan is often too aggressive with his approach. Needs to take a longer term more measure approach. This concerns me.
2. Calling for no tax increases is not the right approach. As the committee said we should focus on limiting tax deductions which would increase taxes without increasing rates
3. Health care cost need to be addressed and I don't see a plan
4. Some regulation is needed. Glass Act separating banks and investing was a good thing
5. Need an immigration plan. Not for full amnesty plan, but we need to do something
6. Voter Id is not a bad thing, but more needs to be done to in sure people have the ability to get the necessary ID.
7. Need to do a better job of compromise to get things done

Just my two cents. It's America so vote for who you like. However trying to completely defend one party over the other really just makes you look foolish

Brad

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 21:28:05 MDT Print View

I agree, people should vote for who they think is best.

I just hate it when they believe in the propoganda and vote against their own best interest.

I can't help myself - responding to your list : )

"1. Obama put together a bi-partism committee to address the budget deficit. By far the best approach to resolving the issue. Didn't react to a single item. Just ignored all the hard work."

The committee never agreed to anything, it was just more of the Rs and Ds not agreeing to anything. Half of the committee wanted to end the Bush tax cuts which Obama has advocated. Many other things from the committee.


"2. Has NO interest in addressing entitlement programs."

Do you mean Social Security? There's no deficit. In several decades they may have to reduce benefits by 30% or something. But if the economy is better or they make some adjustments then even this won't be required.

Do you mean Medicare and Medicaide? Obama-care reduced the deficit some. Need to do more but they made a start.

Other entitlement programs? Small part of budget so it doesn't make that much difference.


"3. Total lack of leadership. Go ahead and say the Rep House is in the way. A good leader is able to overcome that. If the only way he can become a good leader is to control all of Congress, then anybody can do that."

If the Rs block almost everything and say #1 priority is to make sure he's not re-elected, you can't say it's all Obama's fault.


"4. Total lack of transparency (something he promised). Fast and Furious, Intel leaks, etc."

Fast and Furious was started by Bush, ended by Obama. The AG testified multiple times. They won't release info that's illegal to release. The Rs just want to make something where there's nothing as a political strategy.

Intel leaks - no reason to think Obama did anything, but the Rs do want to investigate anything as a political strategy.


"5. Totally anti business unless you are an union business. As a small business owner I live the effects of his policy."

What effects of Obama policy is adversely affecting you?


"6. Big government is just not better. They have no track record of doing anything right except building a Great Military. If anyone thinks the healthcare act will cost what they say is just being fooled. I will bet you anything that in 20 years the cost will far exceed any estimate they are projecting. Really just think about it. Every government expenditure has a budget associated with it. How many times have they stayed within the budget. Both parties are to blame."

Big government did the GI bill and other programs which educated us which created the high tech computer revolution. Highways. Health care improvements are based on research paid for by big government. Social security is pretty efficient - a lot fewer poverty seniors...

You could also find examples of waste, like $100 military toilet seats and most of the military spending that the military doesn't even need.

Big business can screw things up - Enron, the banks that precipitated the financial collapse,... Other big businesses do good things like maybe Apple Computer.

The solution isn't just saying anything the government does is screwed up so privatize it. That's just a rationalization for political supporters to make a bunch of money.


"7. He has a strategy to pit the social classes against each other. It is bad to be successful and make any money. BTW what is fair share anyway. How do you determine that number."

Like Warren Buffet said "there is a class war and my class has won" (or something like that).

Fair share - the top 0.1% should pay at least 35% of their income in taxes. Corporations should pay a tax of 25% of their income. Other government programs and regulations shouldn't be designed so a few political supporters get super-rich.


"8. His campaign strategy is awful. Why do I care what Rommey's tax return looks like? The IRS is responsible for determining if he paid the correct taxes based on the tax law."

Romney says his business experience will enable him to run the country better.

If his business experience is to exploit loopholes to enrich himself, that's relevant. No one is saying he did anything illegal. Even Rs are saying he should release his tax returns.


"He is just looking for material to bash him. Why don't he focus on what he is going to do instead of just looking for trash."

Trash is saying that Obama was born in Kenya or is a Muslim. Or calling him a "tar baby" and when you're called on it saying that it was referring to a blob of tar but message sent to racists - we're (the Rs) are with you, vote for us. Or calling Obama the most radical socialist/communist that's ever existed. Or saying that he'll take your guns away. Or saying Obama wants to give your teenage daughter an abortion without you knowing about it.


"Chicago politics."

That is more trash talk when you have nothing meaningful to criticize him for.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 21:32:58 MDT Print View

Jerry, that was a great post. I like your insight

David Adair
(DavidAdair) - M

Locale: West Dakota
Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 22:10:23 MDT Print View

Brad, that was a great post. I like that you are rational.

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife

Locale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/12/2012 22:31:20 MDT Print View

Sorry, can't help chuckling at the last two responses!

What's great here are not the individual arguments. What's great is that, at least so far, we've pretty well managed to disagree without flying off the handle or attacking each other. I hope we can stay that way!

More willingness to compromise from the politicians on both sides might get our government working again. I hope that finally begins to happen!

On the other hand, it's rather startling to read some of the campaign literature from 150 years ago. Most of the stuff coming out nowadays is pretty tame by comparison.

Jeffrey McConnell
(Catalyst) - F
I'm with Mary too on 08/12/2012 23:17:25 MDT Print View

"As far as I'm concerned, it's 'A plague on both your houses!'"

I'm right there with you. Just one question Mary. Does your dog enjoy hiking? If so, pm me his/her name and you can count on my vote.

"He is just looking for material to bash him. Why don't he focus on what he is going to do instead of just looking for trash."

My guess is because he doesn't know what he's going to do. Trash in politics is used as a distraction. He's had four years and they haven't been that great. Hopefully the next four are better for us all no matter who wins the election.

David Lutz
(davidlutz)

Locale: Bay Area
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/12/2012 23:27:22 MDT Print View

Just a friendly, complimentary fact-check; if you're not interested, please don't read the post!

"Democrats tried to get through a bill that required that people and corporations that contribute to political speech have to be publically disclosed. We should at least know who's buying off the government. The Rs fillibustered it."

Dems are very interested in knowing who donates to Reps - in some cases so they can hassle said donors (See Target, Wal-Mart, that one guy up in North Dakota). They're own donors, not so much.

"Rs got us into two wars that are a large part of the deficit. Ds "ended" Iraq war (although we're still there but at least much reduced). There is a plan to end Afganistan war. The Libya war was short and somewhat successful. We have avoided an Iran war."

IIRC - The Afghanistan war resolution was passed with a nearly unanimous vote with Barbara Lee (D-Oakland) the lone dissenter. The Iraq war resolution had maybe 15-20 nay votes. Mostly democrats. The Libya war or intervention or whatever was not submitted for a vote - a violation of the law. I'm afraid, unfortunately, that the policies of the current administration have delayed and made more likely an Iranian war rather than avoided one outright. I hope I'm wrong on that.

"Ds ended "don't ask don't tell". Obama said he was in favor of gAy marriage. Then black religious leaders were forced to do the same."

One and two are true enough, three is less so.

"Obama Care reduced the deficit from Medicare prescription which was another huge part of the deficit."

What?

"The Ds are pushing the "Buffet Rule" which would tax at 30% income over $250K - restore a bit of fairness. And eliminating the "Bush tax cuts" for over $250K. And other attempts to restore fairness. This is another part of ending deficit."

Tax on AGI over $250k is already taxed at over 30%. Are you talking about recategorizing carried interest as income? If so, you and I might agree on that; need to see the details. I'm very curious - the dems had TOTAL control for two years, that would have been a great time to pass a "fair" tax increase. Why didn't that happen?

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/13/2012 00:32:11 MDT Print View

I'd have to agree that if Romney is using his financial success as his reason as to why he should be qualified, then he should be open about it. Own the success. Even show you want to help fellow Americans by sharing the what and how of your success. Everyone knows he's filthy rich. Refusing to disclose some assets, even if purely offshore, is much worse than letting people know just how much wealth there is. That is, unless there really is something hidden that would confirm that he moved jobs offshore, abused offshore investments, continued to run his business, etc.

Dirk Rabdau
(dirk9827) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Regardless of who wins on 08/13/2012 02:49:12 MDT Print View

There are some sobering issues that will need to be dealt with:

1) The United States currently spends approximately 18 percent of its GDP on health care. That is far and away more than any other industrialized nation. One could argue that we get a fairly poor return on our investment, given several barometers of success. Have certain types of cancer? You want to be treated in the United States, best cancer care hands down. Have anything else? Other countries are just as effective and a lot less expensive.

If you would like some interesting statistical takes on United Sates health care, I suggest looking here and here.

2) The United States military spending is enormous - so large that our military spending equals the spending of the next 19 largest military spenders combined. And when you get to 19th place, you are talking about countries like Spain. We cannot continue to spend at these levels - it isn't feasible. And before you think that foreign aid reductions can somehow level this off, consider for a moment that for every dollar the U.S. spends on its military, the country chips in a nickel for on foreign aid, international development aid humanitarian assistance.

3) On military and health care - With all due respect to our active and retired military members, the one issue that will need to be addressed is the
escalating costs associated with military health care. The government almost certainly will need to reduce funding spent on care of military personnel and their families- costs are escalating at an unsustainable rate.

Edited by dirk9827 on 08/13/2012 04:32:10 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/13/2012 06:12:51 MDT Print View

If there are more Ds in office, would you expect more or less/longer or shorter wars?

Carried interest should be taxed the same as ordinary income. Any R that votes for this will be primaried by Grover Norquist. He gets his money from anonymous sources.

More than this, capital gain and dividends should be taxed the same as ordinary income. Also social security and medicare tax. Why do capital gains get preference? Because super rich people have bought off the government.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/13/2012 06:15:37 MDT Print View

"Sorry, can't help chuckling at the last two responses!

What's great here are not the individual arguments. What's great is that, at least so far, we've pretty well managed to disagree without flying off the handle or attacking each other. I hope we can stay that way!"

I agree on both, Mary

"People can disagree without being disagreeable"

Extremists on both sides would rather we just scream at each other.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/13/2012 08:22:11 MDT Print View

1. Not talking about the Tax Supercommitte. I'm talking about the Debt Commission committee. They did approve an approach and Obama tabled it. In fact during the process he was threatening to veto portions if they were included. I'm sure the plan wasn't perfect and neither side got their way. However it was a great place to start and he just ignored it.

2. We can't continue to support SS, Medicare, Medicaid, federal pensions, etc in their current form. This is the big elephant in the room that both sides just want to ignore it. Social Security, Medicare, Medcaid, welfare and other entitlements make up 62% of the budget. Both parties lack the will to address. You can also say that the SS has no deficit, but the federal govt has borrowed 2.7 trillion from the surpluses over the years.

3. Didn't say it was all his fault. However good leaders are able to get some things accomplished. Can't always blame other side for bad news and take credit for all the good news.


5. I meet with new prospects and customers every week and 90% are concerned about the future (ie Bush tax cuts, automatic tax cuts, more regulatory requirements, more government involvement, etc). Most are being cautious with capital spending. This means they are delaying projects, etc. However I'm finding companies more willing to invest in IT projects than hire people. Nobody wants to hire people given the uncertainty. I'm also doing more global projects because operations are moving out of the US. Some is based on regulations and some on getting closer to the customer. I don't think many business owners would consider the current administration pro business. If you would spend some time talking with the small business community you would find out we are mad as hell with comments like you didn't build that.

6. I wouldn't privatize everything. When businesses screw up the shareholder pays and not the taxpayer. Look at the whole alternative energy issue and the lost taxpayer dollars. Sure the government can be effective at some things, but they are rarely efficient at it. Remember inefficiency equals wasted tax dollars. The government can run a national health care system, but the taxpayer pays a penalty because of how inefficient they run things.

7. So then you agree that he is pitting social classes against each other and making it seem bad to be successful?

Top 10% of earners pay 70% of the taxes. Bottom 50% of earners pay 2%. Almost half pay no taxes. So you want to add more to the top 10%. Doesn't really seem fair to me. I think we have a serious problem when you don't have everyone paying some taxes. If everyone feels the pain each time you increase taxes I think everyone would become vested in how we spend tax revenues. I would like some stewardship when it comes to spending tax dollars.

8. Why is using a tax loopholes of any interest? If it's not illegal then what is the purpose? I'm sure when the CPAs prepare Obama's tax return they look for all the legal writeoffs. If Rommey's CPAs didn't do the same I would question his intelligence.

At least he has business experience to help him understand the economy and businesses. Obama is a lawyer and career politician that doesn't have a clue how things work in the real world. And he has plenty of company from both parties in Washington. That my friend is the biggest problem. I equate it to when I was working on my MBA. It was very easy to pick out the professors who had real world experience and those that were career educators. The career bunch didn't have any problem with the theory, but they didn't really understand what was happening in the real world.

Obama's campaign strategy is about Rommey's tax returns, looking for Bain dirt, trying to tie in a woman's death to Bain, etc. How about he tell us what his budget looks like, how he is going to reduce debt, plan to grow the economy. Maybe tell us why what he has tried to date hasn't worked and what he is going to do different. Instead he is looking for dirt and attacking. If his answer is to just blame the other party, then we need a new leader.

I'm equally disappointed when the other party takes the dirt approach. The comments you pointed out are disgraceful and not appropriate. However why don't you acknowledge that your party is just as bad? I started the whole thread by being critical of both parties and stated why I picked the least worst in my opinion. You continue to defend your party as if they have the answers and do no wrong.

The definition of insanity is continuing to do the same thing and expect a different result. He hasn't showed me where he is going to change, so why would I vote for 4 more years of this. Obama agrees. That is why he is not campaigning on the last 4 years, but trying to trash his opponent.

Brad

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/13/2012 09:42:36 MDT Print View

Responses to Brad:

1. You're right that Obama tabled the Debt Commission. So did all of Congress. The only ones interested in the conclusions of that committee were the committee members themselves. Shame on most of them for not taking this seriously.

However, the U.S. is experiencing historically low borrowing rates. A severe recession/stalled recovery is not the time to move to austerity on debt. That is a mid-term or long-term goal once short-term growth is stabilized. The U.S. should be borrowing money to stimulate the economy in the short term while making plans for long-term deficit reduction. Unfortunately, with 2, 4, and 6 year terms, no one is interested in the long-term, just scoring political points.

2. Entitlements are an issue--one that has been exacerbated by poor financial planning by Congress (and the presidents who propose budgets). You're right, it's a bipartisan thing. It doesn't help that Congress has been borrowing from SS surpluses for some time while investing in the upper classes, thus leaving more to fall into the lower classes and in need of a safety net. Of course, during a recession, spending in these areas will rise. It's cyclical.

As for state pensions, most states underfunded their pension systems despite their legal obligation to pay. This was contracted labor and you can't blame police and teachers for wanting what is contractually owed to them, especially given that this was supposed to be part of the contract for public service--lower short-term wages but good pensions. If you compare pensions to private sector ones from twenty years back, they weren't that much better either. The private sector has used this as a way to cut costs and increase profits.

3. Somewhat agreed. Except to say that Mitch McConnell held a meeting for Senate Rs in which he laid out his plan to oppose every piece of D legislation and to make Obama a one-term president. Also, racism. I grew up in the Deep South, returned there after college/graduate school, and the racism was far more open than in any other period of my life.

5. Come on--you know that "you didn't build that" was talking about roads and bridges. I won't challenge you on your feelings of Obama not being pro-business, but that's a cheap shot.

6. Mostly agreed. But I think the healthcare industry demonstrates that the private sector can be very inefficient as well. Especially when it is concerned with enriching its stockholders/executives. Having to choose between a government bureaucrat and a capitalist making decisions about my healthcare is an impossible choice. We can do better than single-payer. Our nation is too large and diverse to make that efficient. It can be done, but not in the current political climate. I don't see real solutions on the horizon.

7. The social classes have been pitted against one another since 1776. This is an even more powerful force in our nation's history than racism. In fact, it has been one of the driving factors behind racism (see Reconstruction and the way wealthy white men used Southern racism to pit poor whites against poor blacks and entrench their own power).

8. Agreed.

Dirty politics: Frankly, I don't see the calls for Romney's tax returns or questioning his business strategies or employment (that retroactive retirement is pretty shady, even though it didn't have to be if he had just told MA the truth in the first place) that dirty. Not yet, at least. He's running on his business record, and those are all fair game for that. He should just own it instead of playing to whatever he thinks the people he's talking to want to hear. He's clearly a very good businessman, but I don't see him making the case that his way of doing business will be good for a nation, just for a few.

Obama should talk about what has worked and hasn't worked. He's hiding behind Romney right now, but that will likely change once we get passed this phase of the election cycle. Presidential campaigns last so long these days that both sides have to fill up 24-hour cable news with something or be irrelevant. It's terrible, awful, and immoral, but that's how the system works. (We need serious campaign reform, more than just on the financing issue.)

Your definition of insanity doesn't hold water. It's an old cliché. However, I agree with it. The last four years haven't gone well. But we can't just look to the U.S. for causes. It's a globalized economy. Anything the U.S. has done to gain ground in the last two years has been undercut by the Eurozone and the slowing of China's development. Our recovery wouldn't have been strong without those things, but it wouldn't have been this weak. We should be thankful that we aren't suffering more, especially given how deep the hole was that we dug.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/13/2012 10:21:34 MDT Print View

Ayn Rand and Jesus aren't compatible. Not sure what Teavangelicals are going to do.

James Castleberry
(Winterland76)
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/13/2012 10:50:26 MDT Print View

The key issue that neither side is addressing is this: Now that economic growth is for all intents and purposes over (due primarily to rising liquid fuel prices), how are we going to divide a pie that is no longer growing. Instead, both sides pretend that we can fire up the engines of economic growth again. Aren't any voters worried about NDAA, drones, kill lists, etc.?
Jake Tapper vs. Jay Carney

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/13/2012 10:58:41 MDT Print View

Aren't any voters worried about NDAA, drones, kill lists, etc.?

This is my biggest concern (income inequality is second). But neither party is addressing it. They just assume agreement.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/13/2012 11:18:43 MDT Print View

Clayton, good response. Don't agree with all but like you open response. I added a few comments

1. You're right that Obama tabled the Debt Commission. So did all of Congress. The only ones interested in the conclusions of that committee were the committee members themselves. Shame on most of them for not taking this seriously.

However, the U.S. is experiencing historically low borrowing rates. A severe recession/stalled recovery is not the time to move to austerity on debt. That is a mid-term or long-term goal once short-term growth is stabilized. The U.S. should be borrowing money to stimulate the economy in the short term while making plans for long-term deficit reduction. Unfortunately, with 2, 4, and 6 year terms, no one is interested in the long-term, just scoring political points.

-- Didn't say drastic measures, but long term comprehensive plan needs to be developed but no one has the will power. Doesn't serve their purpose to get re-elected. Both parties. The borrowing to stimulate the economy doesn't work. If it did we should borrow 100 trillion because the return will be greater than the amount borrowed. We have been borrowing for 4 years and seen a stagnant economy. No proof that doing what we did saved us from worse. Just spin to justify more borrowing and spending.

2. Entitlements are an issue--one that has been exacerbated by poor financial planning by Congress (and the presidents who propose budgets). You're right, it's a bipartisan thing. It doesn't help that Congress has been borrowing from SS surpluses for some time while investing in the upper classes, thus leaving more to fall into the lower classes and in need of a safety net. Of course, during a recession, spending in these areas will rise. It's cyclical.

-- Investing in upper classes? Doesn't really make sense when 62% of all government spending is on entitlements. Agree that we should expect increase in recession and obviously we need to spend in this area. However can't act like we borrowed to give to the upper class.

As for state pensions, most states underfunded their pension systems despite their legal obligation to pay. This was contracted labor and you can't blame police and teachers for wanting what is contractually owed to them, especially given that this was supposed to be part of the contract for public service--lower short-term wages but good pensions. If you compare pensions to private sector ones from twenty years back, they weren't that much better either. The private sector has used this as a way to cut costs and increase profits.

-- Government entities are not required to report future liabilities and the unfunded portion. Public companies have been required too for years because it gives a better reporting of the future liabilities and the financial condition of a company. Gov't doesn't do it because they don't want the taxpayer to know the liability and rebel. All contracts have a life and are renegotiated periodically. Both parties need some protection because economic conditions change. Not sure why government employees think they are entitled to a different arrangement than the rest of us. Just doesn't make sense to me that we have government employees retiring in their late 40's and early 50s and receiving a pension for 30-40 years. The system wasn't designed to work that way and we surely can't afford to continue asking the taxpayer to fund these increases. Businesses found out that they couldn't afford to continue the pension plans, so they made a business design to move to 401k type plans. As a business you have taxes, insurance, benefits, etc increasing you have to cut cost somewhere if you want to survive. Remember the consumer/customer is buying from the cheapest provider (ie China, India, etc) and not US companies.

3. Somewhat agreed. Except to say that Mitch McConnell held a meeting for Senate Rs in which he laid out his plan to oppose every piece of D legislation and to make Obama a one-term president. Also, racism. I grew up in the Deep South, returned there after college/graduate school, and the racism was far more open than in any other period of my life.

5. Come on--you know that "you didn't build that" was talking about roads and bridges. I won't challenge you on your feelings of Obama not being pro-business, but that's a cheap shot.

-- Nope, but that was his way out of the comment. Read the speech in full. He really lashes out at small businesses several times. In this economy why wouldn't you say things to lift us up and encourage us to do more (ie expand our business, hire people, etc). No he just wanted to talk about we didn't do anything on our own and should pay more taxes. Guy is just out of touch.

6. Mostly agreed. But I think the healthcare industry demonstrates that the private sector can be very inefficient as well. Especially when it is concerned with enriching its stockholders/executives. Having to choose between a government bureaucrat and a capitalist making decisions about my healthcare is an impossible choice. We can do better than single-payer. Our nation is too large and diverse to make that efficient. It can be done, but not in the current political climate. I don't see real solutions on the horizon.

-- You are dead on. I don't know if their is a solution.

7. The social classes have been pitted against one another since 1776. This is an even more powerful force in our nation's history than racism. In fact, it has been one of the driving factors behind racism (see Reconstruction and the way wealthy white men used Southern racism to pit poor whites against poor blacks and entrench their own power).

-- Agreed. As a successful small business owner I'm just tired of hearing on the negative comments from the current administration .


8. Agreed.

Dirty politics: Frankly, I don't see the calls for Romney's tax returns or questioning his business strategies or employment (that retroactive retirement is pretty shady, even though it didn't have to be if he had just told MA the truth in the first place) that dirty. Not yet, at least. He's running on his business record, and those are all fair game for that. He should just own it instead of playing to whatever he thinks the people he's talking to want to hear. He's clearly a very good businessman, but I don't see him making the case that his way of doing business will be good for a nation, just for a few.


-- Agree somewhat. However businesses being successful leads to hiring the unemployed, more payroll taxes being paid to shore up deficits, more tax dollars to pay down debt.

Obama should talk about what has worked and hasn't worked. He's hiding behind Romney right now, but that will likely change once we get passed this phase of the election cycle. Presidential campaigns last so long these days that both sides have to fill up 24-hour cable news with something or be irrelevant. It's terrible, awful, and immoral, but that's how the system works. (We need serious campaign reform, more than just on the financing issue.)

-- Agree 100%.

Your definition of insanity doesn't hold water. It's an old cliché. However, I agree with it. The last four years haven't gone well. But we can't just look to the U.S. for causes. It's a globalized economy. Anything the U.S. has done to gain ground in the last two years has been undercut by the Eurozone and the slowing of China's development. Our recovery wouldn't have been strong without those things, but it wouldn't have been this weak. We should be thankful that we aren't suffering more, especially given how deep the hole was that we dug.

-- My expectations where not for a quick recovery. However their is no proof that what we did had any positive impact on the economy. Again just spin to justify the excessive spending over the last 8 years for that matter. Yes both administrations. The real problem is we have no long term plan and I'm not sure either party has an interest in developing one.

Brad

Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - M

Locale: Southeast
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/13/2012 11:26:38 MDT Print View

"Why do capital gains get preference? Because super rich people have bought off the government."

Ding ding ding. We have a winner.

Ryan

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/13/2012 13:30:59 MDT Print View

Let's make sure we clarify that the super rich have bought off both the Rep and Dems. Well known fact that the dems do not want to change the capital gain rate. They had a chance in 2008 and 2009, but did nothing. They have been a big supporter of protecting the special treatment for private equity firms (ie carried interest is treated as capital gain instead of ordinary income). And let's not forgot that many of our congressmen benefit from the lower tax.

And yes it needs to change.

Brad

Edited by wufpackfn on 08/13/2012 13:34:20 MDT.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/13/2012 14:11:26 MDT Print View

Everyone conveniently forgets that the Dems had majority control of the House and Senate for 4 years, and didn't act on any grand plans (including the last 2 Bush years). I'm going to vote for whoever I decide will bring the most jobs, union or not. Although it has been wonderful having transparency in the White House (insert sarcastic font here). I wil agree with a previous poster that it is all about money and power, regardless of party. And I agree with that more after have a US Representative for a father-in-law.

My favorite current quote is from Thomas Sowell - "I have never understood why it is greed to want to keep the money you have earned, but not greed to want to take someone else's money".

Dirk Rabdau
(dirk9827) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
On Taxes on 08/13/2012 16:10:19 MDT Print View

"Top 10% of earners pay 70% of the taxes. Bottom 50% of earners pay 2%. Almost half pay no taxes. So you want to add more to the top 10%. Doesn't really seem fair to me. I think we have a serious problem when you don't have everyone paying some taxes. If everyone feels the pain each time you increase taxes I think everyone would become vested in how we spend tax revenues."

I would like to point out that these statistics are a bit misleading without context. Most Americans feel tax hikes in one form or another - perhaps not on their income taxes but certainly at the sales register, gas pump or when paying the property bill.

As recently as 2007, 38 percent of the population didn't pay federal income tax. That number has increased in recent years - mainly because of the severe recession - to approximately 48 percent, according to the Congressional Budget Office. But a lack of federal tax bill isn't the equivalent of not paying taxes. Just as any business owner would tell you that federal taxes are not the lone taxes they pay, wage earners pay payroll taxes. They are also likely to be subject to excise taxes, local taxes and sales tax. According to the Tax Policy Center determined that only 17 percent of all households did not pay any payroll or federal tax in 2009 - and this includes retirees and those unable to work because of medical conditions

Additionally, when you look at the lowest earning one-fifth of the population, they did pay an average of 4.0 percent (in 2007 when the latest CBO numbers were available)in federal taxes. When you are talking about an $18,000 income, 4.0 percent is fairly significant. It still is a low percentage as compared to many others - and c certainly a minuscule percentage of federal tax revues - but they are also in the category that have the least income to spend.

That the largest earners pay the majority of taxes collected speaks more to the disparity in incomes than it does to any disadvantage to being wealthy. Yes, top earners pay the most dollars in taxes, but it is because they far out-earn the average breadwinner. A high-income earner who makes $25 million a year will contribute far more in terms of dollars than a family making $40,000.

Which gets us to the tax exposure. The highest income federal tax bracket is currently 35 percent. However, the wealthiest individuals generally earn about a third of their income through long-term capital gains, which are taxed at a 15 percent rate (as they are for anyone in the 25 percent and above income brackets, I believe). This helps lower the tax exposure of the wealthiest individuals, for they are far more likely to make repeated use of capital gains than your average individual.

I could go on, but I think what I am trying to support is that any discussion regarding tax burden requires context and explanation. This is partially by design - our tax system is complex.


Dirk

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/13/2012 17:14:17 MDT Print View

Yes - super rich have bought off both Rs amd Ds

I don't even fault the politicians totally - if a politician doesn't get money, he won't get elected so won't be able to accomplish anything

We need an outrage from the people that we won't put up with this any more which will allow brave politicans to do something about it. I only half agree with the Paul family but they don't seem to be totally bought, but I'm not sure.


We haven't put enough money into public employee pension funds. Unreasonable investment returns were assumed. We have to renegotiate these. Reduce payments by 25% or whatever. Public employees can't complain because when they negotiated this they should have know the pensions were unreasonable. If you present the facts to the employees, I think they will agree.


Inflating medical expenses are screwing up everything - local and state governments, veterans, medicare, medicaid, private companies,... We spend more than other countries but get less results. It keeps getting worse. We need to quit doing ineffective treatments and do effective ones. The pharmacutical/health insurance/health care/... companies have bought off our government so it's difficult to find a solution. For example, when the Clintons tried to implement healthcare reform the health insurance companies ran commercials that influenced people so that it killed it.


We have exported many jobs to China and other countries. Now we can't reduce our unemployment rate. Duhhhh... Neither Rs and Ds are talking much about this. I think the Ds are talking about "Buy American" a little more than the Rs which is a step in the right direction. Obama has supported more "free trade" deals.


We have many problems. But China, for example, has many more, even though they seem to be doing better now. They have 1 billion+ poor people.


I say we all get "mad as hell and I'm not going to take it any more!". Rs and Ds - take control of your parties. Third parties won't work because the Rs and Ds have rigged the system. The teaparty has been taken over by the super-rich that finance it. All the "tea party" Rs just vote as they're told by the super-rich.


Sorry - off soap box now...

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: On Taxes on 08/13/2012 19:05:37 MDT Print View

Dirk,

Good post and you are definitely right with the different taxes and complexity. Heck I'm a CPA, but pay a Big 4 accounting firm to prepare our company taxes. I would rather have a poke in the eye than do a tax return

My point is we need a single tax that everyone pays. Sure we need provisions to help the poor, but everyone needs some skin in the game. I think that when politicians ask for more revenue to spend, that all taxpayers should have to say yes I agree and support. Today we have a system where we reward and penalize different groups based on political power.

I know it's a fantasy. Back to reality.

Brad

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/13/2012 19:13:26 MDT Print View

Jerry,

That was a great post. I'll gladly get mad with you.

I think China/India etc job offshoring is for a few reasons:
1. Labor is cheaper and improves company performance. However quality is becoming more of an issue and some is coming back to the US.
2. Consumers are a big problem. If everyone continues to buy foreign made at Walmart, Target, etc companies have no choice but to get cheaper or go out of business.
3. We are a global market and often times it makes more sense to manufacturer the goods closer to the customer.

Really good comments.

Brad

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/14/2012 00:19:39 MDT Print View

If only we could just educate our people, this debate would be very different (not necessarily in this forum--I mean on a national level). Instead, as a nation, we prefer short-term fixes to long-term problems. It's the easy money we want, not the long, hard-earned dollar. (Read Andrew Bacevich on this.)

People vote against their own interests because attack ads and dirty politics work. Big Money reframes debates to be about silly things that aren't threatened like freedom to whatever (well, unless your Muslim or poor...) and chicken sandwiches. Yes, we have real issues. And yes, certain freedoms are threatened. --Just not the ones we're paying attention to. Sometimes I watch the news (which I generally avoid doing because there are better sources), and I think that everything we hold dear must be under attack. Then I remember that fear is a great way to drive ratings. And it all comes back to money and education and long-term vs. short-term interests.

I find it interesting that with the diverse perspectives here we can come to some kind of consensus on some pretty big issues. Yet, Congress can't. Like I said, I think it comes down to education and delaying gratification and money in politics. This is probably an oversimplification, but resolving those things would move us far enough forward to start getting into where we really disagree. It would also mean our country would be in a far healthier place to have a serious debate about compromise and where we disagree.

(Full disclosure--I'm a public school teacher. I really believe in education.)

HK Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/14/2012 06:02:38 MDT Print View

It's been the same system since the Reagan years, pro and con. You'd hope both parties would put together their better plans. Yes, Soc. Sec, Medicare, and state/muni pensions, need updating with some personal responsibility put in their but don't forget why they were put in their in the first place (plus a study showing most lose the ability to make good financial decisions starting at age 55 - hence the scams). The fact that most were out of the stock market during the past bull (2009-?) should concern the decision makers. In aggregate, most Americans aren't great investors or at making prudent financial plans. Food for thought?

On the other hand, these relatively low rates were a chance to upgrade our infrastructure at low cost and put people to work now. Goldman's chairman reminded everyone the US population will hit over 400 million in the investible future. So we delay until rates are higher and more people are back on the road before starting construction. And on it goes (could have used this when the D's had the house as well as now).

Add: rather interesting how world affairs (including drones, climate change, free trade) are on the back burner

At this point, it's easy to imagine eBaying all my furnishings and using the proceeds for hiking.. Screw politics

Edited by hknewman on 08/14/2012 06:56:16 MDT.

KEN LARSON
(KENLARSON) - MLife

Locale: Western Michigan
BOTTOM LINE on 08/14/2012 09:16:49 MDT Print View

Check this out as this is the "bottom line"!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=EW5IdwltaAc

Matthew mcgurk
(phatpacker) - F

Locale: Central coast California
romney ryan on 08/14/2012 20:25:58 MDT Print View

Obama has not done anything promised: cutting the debt in half, unemplyment 5.6%, reaching across the isle ect ect. By all measurable marks he has failed. Did you know he is the one who gutted medicare 714,000,000,000 he took and alocated it for obama care. I am very conservative and he has not done one thing to reach my side of the isle. But more than that he is no Clinton who met in the middle with Newt and got things done. He has promised to further nationalize industries, claims government success for private accomplishments, and is treasonous with our national security. I suggest that Dem's have a coup and save their party and nominate Hillary so at least we will recognize our country in 2016.

Kathy A Handyside
(earlymusicus) - M

Locale: Southeastern Michigan
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/15/2012 00:51:39 MDT Print View

I refuse to vote for someone who supports drilling every wilderness area for oil, to "end our dependence on foreign oil so we can have American oil" as Romeny said. I know exactly what that means: the drilling rigs will roll on into and over the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as well as other wilderness areas.

No thanks.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: romney ryan on 08/15/2012 08:14:03 MDT Print View

Mathew - you have all the right wing talking points down very good : )

I am worried that Romney will sink in popularity and the Rs will nominate someone even worse. Fortunately, the convention is soon and then it will be difficult...

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/15/2012 08:32:56 MDT Print View

Thanks for your response, Brad

"I meet with new prospects and customers every week and 90% are concerned about the future (ie Bush tax cuts, automatic tax cuts, more regulatory requirements, more government involvement, etc)..."

The Rs with D support put in tax cuts for wealthy people - especially the 15% rate for carried interest and capital gains - without paying for it. Now Obama wants to end this - we can't just give tax cuts to a few people and add to our debt. Rs refuse.

So based on this you're going to vote against Obama? He seems to be the responsible person here. Your anger is mis-directed.

Whats funny to me is the Rs say they want to reduce taxes for "the job creators". If they said "super rich and big corporations" voters wouldn't go along. Whenever they say "job creators" know this is just a focus group tested phrase but they really mean "super rich and big corporations".

So, you're a small businessman. (Hypothetically) what's your average tax as a percentage of income - I bet it's about 40% when you include the employer portion of social security. These guys are doing nothing for you. Why do you vote for them?


"If you would spend some time talking with the small business community you would find out we are mad as hell with comments like you didn't build that."

That's not what Obama said. It's been twisted by political propogandists.

Obama said that small business success depends on partnership with government - roads, police, military, education,...

The right wing has us thinking the government is bad so we should replace it with private companies - an opportunity for some big businesses to make a bunch of money.

We need to get back to the post WWII frame of mind - we are the best country and we can do anything - combination of government and private businesses...

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/16/2012 14:33:39 MDT Print View

Just out - Romney never paid less than 13 percent of his income in federal taxes http://news.yahoo.com/romney-says-tax-rate-always-least-13-percent-165815134--abc-news-politics.html

You small businesses and middle income people paid maybe 40% when you include employer portion of social security?

The proposals are to reduce taxes on "the job creators" (super rich and big corporations) by half, so that will put Romney tax at 6.5%

There's an evil geniousness to this. The upper half of income people pay significant tax and will vote for someone who says they're going to reduce taxes. Too bad they're only reducing taxes for "the job creators".

David Lutz
(davidlutz)

Locale: Bay Area
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/16/2012 16:32:11 MDT Print View

"Just out - Romney never paid less than 13 percent of his income in federal taxes http://news.yahoo.com/romney-says-tax-rate-always-least-13-percent-165815134--abc-news-politics.html

You small businesses and middle income people paid maybe 40% when you include employer portion of social security?

The proposals are to reduce taxes on "the job creators" (super rich and big corporations) by half, so that will put Romney tax at 6.5%

There's an evil geniousness to this. The upper half of income people pay significant tax and will vote for someone who says they're going to reduce taxes. Too bad they're only reducing taxes for "the job creators"."



Where to start? Oh, never mind......

I'm just grateful these forums are not influential in any way.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/16/2012 16:44:43 MDT Print View

"Where to start? Oh, never mind......

I'm just grateful these forums are not influential in any way."

Aw, c'mon, David. I was looking forward to hearing your justification for a 13% tax rate on a $20,000,000/year job creator like Mitt, who derives most of his income from interest/dividends/hedge fund profits(carried interest?). If it's up to your usual high standard, you might even influence me. ;0)

David Lutz
(davidlutz)

Locale: Bay Area
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/16/2012 17:28:27 MDT Print View

Hey Tom, nice to hear from you. ; )

I doubt any post on BPL influences anyone's thinking about any thing. I'm certain my posts don't.

I haven't seen any proposal that reduces tax rates by half, but maybe I missed it.

The way I see it, capital gains tax is the "price" paid for realizing capital gains. For the wealthy, capital gains are often easily manipulated. Raise the "price" of capital gains and you will see less of it. I share this view with JFK, Bill Clinton and '09 Barack Obama, among others.

If my understanding of carried interest is correct, I think it should be taxed as regular income.

One issue I have with the above post is the confusion regarding tax rates. Although I doubt it's intentional.

Romney's 13% rate is probably calculated with the net tax paid as the numerator and gross income as the denominator. The 40% rate is the marginal rate on every dollar earned over a certain amount. Even if you hit the highest bracket your effective rate will be lower, possibly much lower if you have enough deductions.

I see comparing the two as apples-to-oranges.

Jerry counted paying both halves of FICA, but that doesn't change the point.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/16/2012 20:35:44 MDT Print View

"I doubt any post on BPL influences anyone's thinking about any thing. I'm certain my posts don't."

I share your doubt, probably to the dismay of some. ;)

"I haven't seen any proposal that reduces tax rates by half, but maybe I missed it."

I can't remember the exact numbers off the top of my head, by Ryan's budget proposal
takes a serious chunk off the top rates, not 50%, but close, IIRC. As would be expected, the peasants do not fare so well.

"The way I see it, capital gains tax is the "price" paid for realizing capital gains. For the wealthy, capital gains are often easily manipulated. Raise the "price" of capital gains and you will see less of it. I share this view with JFK, Bill Clinton and '09 Barack Obama, among others."

I don't doubt this for a moment. I would tend to agree myself under current conditions. As long as the political system remains as it is, the rich will have no shortage of loopholes to manipulate. For me the deeper question is what kind of society do we want to be. If the answer is that we should continue to do business as usual, the rich will be free to manipulate their capital gains and your view will continue to be accurate. If the answer is that they have a certain financial obligation to the society that provided them the opportunity to prosper, then such loopholes can easily be closed, and such gains will be fully exposed to taxation.

"Romney's 13% rate is probably calculated with the net tax paid as the numerator and gross income as the denominator. The 40% rate is the marginal rate on every dollar earned over a certain amount. Even if you hit the highest bracket your effective rate will be lower, possibly much lower if you have enough deductions."

That is my understanding as well. My problem is with the deductions available to the very rich. Carried interest is merely one egregious example. Like yourself, I think it should be taxed as ordinary income. Were that the case, I suspect Mitt would be paying substantially more than 13% of his gross income in taxes.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 08/17/2012 00:10:30 MDT Print View

"Romney's 13% rate is probably calculated with the net tax paid as the numerator and gross income as the denominator. The 40% rate is the marginal rate on every dollar earned over a certain amount."

Romney's income must be mostly long term capital gain, perhaps with some carried interest thrown in. That would be 15%. Plus throw in a couple tricks to make it 13%.


"Raise the "price" of capital gains and you will see less of it."

Long term capital gain rate was 28% until 1997, then 20% until 2003, then 15% since then.

It seems like if anything the economy has gotten progressively worse over that period.

Of course that's only one factor, but

When you raise capital gain tax rate then people tend to leave there money in the business. When you lower tax rate people take money out and start gambling with it causing speculative bubbles. Wealthy people that have lots of capital gains, will have more money if they don't pay as much tax, but the stock, real estate, and other investments will be relatively the same - more money going after the same stuff will raise prices - speculative bubble.

If you lower taxes on regular people, they tend to spend it, and that is much better for businesses to have people spending.

Forget the social engineering - everyone should pay the same tax rate except maybe poorer people should pay a little less.

R S
(rps76) - F
Well.... on 08/18/2012 08:30:40 MDT Print View

VI

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Well.... on 08/18/2012 10:25:11 MDT Print View

That is just wrong on many levels.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Well.... on 08/18/2012 12:27:57 MDT Print View

Honolulu is a village?

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Well.... on 08/18/2012 13:44:28 MDT Print View

well put Kat...and I agree....bad taste.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/18/2012 18:59:09 MDT Print View

Jerry,

"So based on this you're going to vote against Obama? He seems to be the responsible person here. Your anger is mis-directed."

Not sure what you mean. I will not vote for him for many reasons. My comment is referring to businesses are concerned about his overall strategy of growing governments role. Ever time the government gets involved you get: inefficient spending, more regulatory control, more paper work, etc. I'm not picking a specific change, just his overall objective.

"Whats funny to me is the Rs say they want to reduce taxes for "the job creators". If they said "super rich and big corporations" voters wouldn't go along. Whenever they say "job creators" know this is just a focus group tested phrase but they really mean "super rich and big corporations"

"Companies with fewer than 500 employees created 64% of net new US jobs from Sept 1992 through 2010, though they employee just 55% of the private sector workforce. (Source Bureau of labor statistics)." The Small Business Administration definition for small business is less than 500 employees (some exceptions based on certain industries). This group represents the largest share of job creation. This group is also the group most impacted by government regulation, tax increases, etc.

Personally, I have two business partners and we have approx. 65 employees spread across 20+ states. When federal and local governments get more involved the result is more cost for my company. The health care act is thousands of pages long (too long for politicians to read) and with many requirements. How do you think I learn what my compliance requirements are? It's called accounting, lawyer and insurance consultant fees. This is just for compliance. I also have seen an increase in my health insurance premium (28% this year alone-not all from HCA) for the changes (ie coverage of kids to 26, no max on plans, etc). I pay part of the increase, but most of the cost is just passed to the employee. (Just for the record when I started the company we paid full family coverage for every employee, but can't any longer). Want another example, how about state sales tax. Every state has special laws and staying up with compliance is a nightmare. Unlike a Government who pass the cost to the taxpayer, I can't pass my cost to the customer. So when an administration is looking to grow their role we get fearful. Obama points out big corps and super rich as who he is going after, but he is really just socking it to this group of job creators.

"That's not what Obama said. It's been twisted by political propogandists.

Obama said that small business success depends on partnership with government - roads, police, military, education,..."

Our success doesn't depend on a partnership with the government. Our success depends on providing a service or product that the customer is willing to buy at a profit to the company. BTW all the things you listed above are paid for by tax dollars we all pay. If his statement is true then why do we have 10million unemployed people? Shouldn't they leverage the same government investment and build their own company?

"The right wing has us thinking the government is bad so we should replace it with private companies - an opportunity for some big businesses to make a bunch of money."

80-90% (hard to get exact %) of all private business are small businesses. Most of the right wing is concerned about these businesses and not the big corps or super rich. Government involved has a much larger impact on us. The big corps have large accounting, legal, HR departments to handle these changes. We don't. And yes I think small private businesses like these are much better for the country than government involvement. Why would you want to grow government when you can grow private sector? Growing the govt cost taxpayers money and private sector pays taxes. Why is that so hard to figure out?

So many of you live in the political world and get caught up in all the hoopla (ie A big corp didn't pay taxes, super rich, lobbyist, 99%, etc). This from both parties. The real world is much different and my fear is voters don't understand the real world. Some are so focused on socking it to the super rich (ie Bush tax cuts, etc) that they are willing to take out the rest of use. Sure changes need to be made and I'm for removing special tax treatments for the super rich. Just don't take the rest of us out.

Brad

Jeffs Eleven
(WoodenWizard) - F

Locale: Greater Mt Tabor
Re: Well.... on 08/18/2012 21:23:10 MDT Print View

The pic can be misleading- its from Crawford, Texas.



Really though- that kid's look is classic!

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/18/2012 21:36:04 MDT Print View

Brad

I don't think the Republican party cares about small businesses.

For example, small businesses tax rate is much higher than super rich and big corporations.

I don't want to sock it to the super rich and big corporations, I just want them to pay their fair share of taxes and quit telling the government what to do.

Both parties want to make government ever bigger - based on what they've done in the past. If you believe that the Republicans will make government smaller, "I have a bridge to sell you" : )


You wouldn't be able to provide a service or product and there would be no customers without services provided by the government. We would be part of Great Britain, or Hitler's Germany. You would have no computers. There would be no highways for you, employees, customers to drive to your business on... That's all Obama was saying.


And it's too bad that there are so many unemployed people.

Germany did it better. Rather than laying off employees, the took less hours. The employees got less wages. The government chipped in and made up for some of the lost wages. Since there weren't so many unemployed people their economy is better.

We could have done more things like that but the Republicans don't want Obama re-elected so they won't agree to much of anything and the Democrats, who are also at least partly bought off by the same right wingers, didn't communicate to us very good any such proposals which might have forced the Republican's hands.

And there were a lot of things that could have been done the last 10s of years that would have avoided this.


We could vote for a third party, but the two parties have hurdles making this difficult.

We could vote for more rational Republicans and Democrats, phone them with our opinions, make donations,... Things are not nearly as bad as the 1930s and things eventually got better then. Hopefully, things will turn around in the near future.

Us citizens are super polarized right now based on irrelevant issues. If we could come together on common ground we could get rid of these bums that are controlling things right now.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/19/2012 06:44:23 MDT Print View

Jerry

I can agree with some of those comments. However when is Obama and Democrats going to address spending cuts? Obama's plan is tax more and spend more. I never hear a plan from him that outlines spending cuts to go along with the tax increases. I think everyone agrees that the plan needs to include tax increases and spending cuts. Some examples what frustrates me:

- Private sector is fine, but we need to increase hiring/building the public sector. Really. That's an increase in spending. State and local gov't had to get their house in order over the past 5 years and that means making decisions on where you spend money
- Medicare and Social Security are off limits. Let's just keep ignoring
- The plan for home owners underwater is to let them right down loan and make bank eat the loss. Why not extend the term of the loan and give them more time to pay. No Obama thinks the business should just eat the loss, which is really passed to those who pay. According to tax law the forgiveness of a debt is taxable income How is this any different
- Student loans. Looking to ease the laws that allow students to go bankrupt and right off loans. Taxpayers will pay for these write-offs because they are making most of the loans. I understand college is expensive and I have a son who starts college Monday. I think we have too many students not viewing college as an investment in their future career, but as a period of enlightment. Wouldn't this be a good time to start teaching young people about the cost and benefit. Doesn't it really make sense to spend 150k on a degree that is going to pay 40k a year. How about making a degree 3 years instead of 4 years. Cut out the extra classes that don't apply to the students major and reduce the cost by 25%.
- Welfare program. Now allowing states the option to eliminate the work requirement. You mentioned Germany early. They have programs that require part time work with reduced benefits. Our system encourages many to not get a job.
- Funding alternative energy programs. Millions of dollars wasted
-HCA. Every projection says increase in spending

You can say the Reps don't want to do anything and I agree, but to say Obama/Demos are wanting to address spending is a joke.

Brad

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/19/2012 08:11:52 MDT Print View

Deficit as analyzed by CBO and graphed by NY Times:

defecit

Starting with the surplus at the end of Clinton (which is arbitrary)

About all of the surplus is cancelled out by reductions in taxes due to economic downturn.

And then most of the deficit is caused by the two wars, the Bush tax cuts, and Medicare prescription part D.

The stimulous that Obama passed were relatively minor and have since expired. The additional programs are even smaller.

If we could just eliminate the two wars, Bush tax cuts, and Medicare Part D, the budget would be balanced.

Obama has "ended" Iraq, although spending continues at reduced level, but that is shrinking.

Obama has a plan to end Afganistan although too slow in my opinion.

Obama Care has reduced the Medicare Part D deficit.

Obama has tried to get rid of the unpaid for Bush Tax cuts that primarily go to the super-wealthy.

I'de say Obama is making some progress on the deficit despite the Republican's attempts to block.

The deficit is not liberal/socialist/communist spending programs - it's a continuation of the policies that the Republicans (including Ryan) put into place and refuse to end.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/19/2012 08:33:43 MDT Print View

"Private sector is fine, but we need to increase hiring/building the public sector. Really. That's an increase in spending."

According to Keynes, the government should run a surplus when the economy is good and deficit when the economy is bad. The Republicans ran a deficit when the economy was good - enriching themselves when they have the opportunity. Then when the Democrats are in power they can scream "we're broke" and try to cancel programs that help average people.

Have you seen recent job reports - almost healthy gains in private jobs but major cuts in public jobs. This is the time we should be borrowing and using it to preserve public jobs. This would help the economy, like Germany did.

But, since we ran up such a huge debt during the Bush years, and large deficit on programs we can't get rid of, we have limited ability to borrow to preserve public jobs. We should do some.


"Welfare program. Now allowing states the option to eliminate the work requirement."

I can't believe you fell for that lie. Maybe you're too busy working : )

The Obama people gave exemptions to a couple Republican governors for alternate programs, but the feds will monitor and if the number of welfare people working doesn't increase, they'll withdraw the exemption. It's just the opposite.


"Student loans. Looking to ease the laws that allow students to go bankrupt and right off loans."

When I went to college I got scholarships from the government, I worked, and I borrowed a little money - $3,000 when I graduated which is $6,000 today inflation adjusted. My dad got his paid for by GI Bill.

The government subsidizing education produced a population of trained people that created computers, advances in health, etc. That's a good example of how the government helps private businesses.

It's ridiculous that people come out of college with $50,000 or $100,000 debts.

Right now we don't have enough trained people. We should go back to what worked. Anyone that has the ability and is willing to do the work should get a college education (or other advanced training) without a huge debt.


Ryan (and Gingrich) sound so reasonable and scholarly - except what they voted for was just the opposite. I don't believe them.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/19/2012 14:49:44 MDT Print View

We have been deficit spending for the last 12 years, so why isn't the economy booming? You say Obama's deficit spending is good for the economy, but Bush's was bad. Why would deficit spending in a down economy have a different impact than in a thriving economy? Common sense.

"Have you seen recent job reports - almost healthy gains in private jobs but major cuts in public jobs. This is the time we should be borrowing and using it to preserve public jobs. "

The job reports shows we are barely keeping up with new people entering the workforce. Unemployment actually went up last month. You can spin it any way you want but people are not going back to work.

Why is it time to borrow money and hire public jobs. See that is the mentality of the public sector. They don't hire people because a job needs to get done, they hire to just put people on the payroll. The federal govt should learn a less from the states and get their house in order.

How much more would you like the taxpayers to subsidize education? You have to cut the cost of education and not look to the govt to subsidize. Where is that money going to come from? Spend, spend, spend.

Read an article about a HR director for a large company in PA. He was furious that his son just graduated from a private school with large student loan and couldn't find a job. Complaining that something has to done about this job market. Then said his son got a degree in the "classics". Seriously. How about get a degree in something that will lead to a job. College education is an investment in a career. We are starving for engineers, scientist, technology, etc. I would hire 3 or 4 more people tomorrow if I could find the right people. I use all the online services for posting jobs and get very few responses.

Brad.

Enjoyed the conversation but I'm bowing out.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/19/2012 20:14:36 MDT Print View

Jerry you keep posting that misleading chart. I've explained it's problems before.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Past the point on 08/20/2012 15:14:03 MDT Print View

The growth of the federal government and those on the net benefit, has reached the point that it probably doesn't matter which party is in office anymore. The Federal gov't has assumed roles that were never intended, pulls money from the producers, and splits it as IT sees fit. Its list of accomplishments is on the short side, and if efficiency is introduced, becomes almost non-existent. A true conservative that runs on reversing this trend is probably not electable.

The parasite will eventually kill the host. When we reach the tipping point, which is where I believe we are headed, it can't be said that the history books weren't full of examples of other failed democracies. Those, still voting for a party that believes in more government, leaves me scratching my head. We will get what we deserve.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Past the point on 08/20/2012 16:08:49 MDT Print View

Fred, I agree that it will make little real difference which party is elected, which is why I'm not particularly interested in party politics (which is what I call 'promises' made to attract votes, which can't not realistically be kept).

However, I think the whole idea of a true democracy is also a pipe-dream. Whenever you allow politics to be largely influenced by wealthy private influences, if is not a true democracy IMHO. The wealthiest few have a much greater say in how the country is run, and that is unfair and inequitable, and clearly not democratic. America has been in this state of un-democracy since its inception.

Although many Republicans and Libertarians will disagree, the UN sets out many things guidelines for what it considers basic human rights. Most notably:

"Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control."

There is also the right to work:

"The State Parties to the present Covenant recognize the right to work, which includes the right of everyone to the opportunity to gain his living by work which he freely chooses or accepts, and will take appropriate steps to safeguard this right. (2) The steps to be taken by a State party to the present Covenant to achieve the full realization of this right shall include technical and vocational guidance and training programmes, policies and techniques to achieve steady economic, social and cultural development and full and productive employment under conditions safeguarding fundamental political and economic freedoms to the individual."

Providing this level of what is considered basic human living standards requires governments to intervene. It is considered fair and equitable to most (the majority, which is what democracy should be all about). It requires those that are better off to be humane and help those that are less fortunate. I don't see American politics and society to be anywhere close to this yet, but I don't see how it can get there either due to the entrenched power of the haves, versus the have-nots. What I see in America is a gross inequity between the wealthy few and the multitude of many who are truly struggling. This is not sustainable from a social perspective.

Do any of you REALLY believe what politicians promise? Whether it be for less government, or more efficient government, or whatever? Do any of you really believe that one person can make those promises on behalf of an entire nation the size of America? Do you really think that Romney can do a better job than Obama (or vice-versa)?

Kathy A Handyside
(earlymusicus) - M

Locale: Southeastern Michigan
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/20/2012 17:53:51 MDT Print View

I don't understand all the screaming on the part of the GOP about spending money. During the Bush administration, the Republicans spent money like mad - two unpaid-for wars comes immediately to mind. They increased the size of government more than any other administration.

There is NOTHING wrong with spending money on the country, so long as that money goes toward intelligent things that improve the lives of EVERYONE (not jsut the effing rich), things like protection of the environment from rampant destruction and pollution from corporations and energy-extraction companies, imposing regulations to curb illegal and destructive money-games on Wall Street that destroy the economy, fixing our crumbling infrastructure, improving education (and that doesn't mean having more charter schools, either; it means improving education that EVERYONE can avail themselves of - i.e., PUBLIC schools - unlike charter schools who can pick and choose which students to allow and turn away whomever they like - that doesn't fit in a democracy), bringing manufacturing and jobs back to America, free health care for all like INTELLIGENT countries have, free college education like INTELLIGENT countries have, improving our social safety net instead telling people, "Tough, if you can't afford to see a doctor! Just die and get out of the way!". I despise Republicans - the new Republicans, the neo-cons and the tea partiers. They are a plague on our democracy.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/20/2012 18:19:30 MDT Print View

"Intelligent" countries?
What does that even mean?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/20/2012 19:47:02 MDT Print View

""Intelligent" countries?
What does that even mean?"

Welllll, if corporations are people, then probably countries are people, too; and we all know how intelligent people are, now don't we? ;0)

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/20/2012 20:02:34 MDT Print View

Makes sense to me Tom

Dave T
(DaveT) - F
comparison on 08/20/2012 20:04:42 MDT Print View

Not sure but I think that the "intelligent countries" refers to those countries which are not filled to the brim with easily-distracted, easily-led morons that populate our good ol' God-fearin' 'merica.

Edited by DaveT on 08/20/2012 20:05:18 MDT.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: comparison on 08/20/2012 21:14:05 MDT Print View

"Not sure but I think that the "intelligent countries" refers to those countries which are not filled to the brim with easily-distracted, easily-led morons that populate our good ol' God-fearin' 'merica."

Hey Dave, do you mean countries with better educated people? Surely a country "filled to the brim with easily-distracted, easily-led morons" can't be due to genetics alone. Then again, if it is merely a lack of education, then surely there are many muslim women who would be the bottom of the moronic pile, but at least they don't tend to be in a position of making or influencing policies...

Jason McSpadden
(JBMcSr1) - M

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Romney/Ryan and Kathy's response on 08/20/2012 21:14:59 MDT Print View

Kathy, I'm certain that you are a very kind and gracious person. I think your personal avatar communicates that about you. But I was saddened to read the animus in your posting and even see the word "despise". And all of this toward a group of people--many who are your neighbors--that simply have a different opinion than you. They just have a different political strategy in mind in accomplishing many of the same goals that we all share.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012=The Official Guide to Legitimate Rape on 08/20/2012 21:22:06 MDT Print View

"Yesterday, Missouri Rep. Todd Akin, Republican Senate nominee and member of the House Science, Space and Technology committee, said pregnancy from rape was "really rare" because "if it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down." "


"Last year, Ye Grand Protector of All Womenfolk Rep. Akin joined forces with GOP VP candidate Paul Ryan to co-sponsor the "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act", which introduced the awesome new term "forcible rape" into our vernacular. Federal funds can only be used to pay for abortion in cases when a woman is raped; the "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act" sought to chip away at that exception by clarifying that only pregnancies resulting from "forcible rape" would qualify for federally funded abortions. The true meaning of "forcible rape" was never clearly defined, and the term was eventually removed from the bill."

http://jezebel.com/5936160/the-official-guide-to-legitimate-rape

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Romney/Ryan and Kathy's response on 08/20/2012 21:28:35 MDT Print View

"toward a group of people--many who are your neighbors--that simply have a different opinion than you. They just have a different political strategy in mind in accomplishing many of the same goals that we all share."

I was also surprised by the wording of Kathy's response, cos up until then I was thinking to myself how civilised the discussions and disagreements had been considering the topic. However, now that I think about it, despise might be close to how I feel about the repubs/tea-baggers/neo-cons that I know well, namely the rest of my family. Then again it's family, so maybe it's more natural to despise them. But it IS hard when you sit with them and try to make conversation, only to find there is virtually nothing you can safely talk about without it turning into a slagging match. You can't even talk about the weather! But mostly I think it is easy to despise what we don't understand, and I don't understand much about the American right wing movements. However, I would like to think that nearly half of Americans can't all be horrible people!

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012=The Official Guide to Legitimate Rape on 08/20/2012 21:40:52 MDT Print View

Thanks for that David. Good to know there is a difference between legitimate rape and illegitimate rape, and that a woman's body can tell the difference.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Slangin' on 08/21/2012 07:52:11 MDT Print View

Lynn... I find it difficult to discuss or argue with most people on the left because their discourse is based on emotion rather than evidence of facts and history. It seems that you've added a few rights to the list, which is fine, but to hold the UN up as a model is more than laughable. To slang the opposition with derogatory titles, is a little sad. Peace out.

A Government Big Enough to Give You Everything You Want, is Strong Enough to Take Everything You Have.
Ford

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Re: Slangin' on 08/21/2012 08:38:41 MDT Print View

The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.
- H. L. Mencken -

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Slangin' on 08/21/2012 09:40:56 MDT Print View

Fred, I find your sexism regarding Lynn to be extremely out of line (not to mention offensive). I am somewhat sympathetic to your ideas, but your attitude and accusations threaten your ability to be heard well.

Edited by GlacierRambler on 08/21/2012 09:41:31 MDT.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Sexism? on 08/21/2012 09:48:24 MDT Print View

"Fred, I find your sexism regarding Lynn to be extremely out of line (not to mention offensive). I am somewhat sympathetic to your ideas, but your attitude and accusations threaten your ability to be heard well."




This one is a head scratcher. Curious where the sexism was detected? ETA: Attitude and accusations?

Edited by BFThorp on 08/21/2012 09:52:59 MDT.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Sexism? on 08/21/2012 10:17:26 MDT Print View

As someone who is almost hyper aware of sexism......I cannot figure this one out either.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Sexist? on 08/21/2012 11:08:38 MDT Print View

Maybe it was the Ford quote that did it? :-)

I swear. I'd love to use a Ron White quote now, but will elect to let it pass.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Sexism? on 08/21/2012 12:01:04 MDT Print View

Fred--here is where I see the sexism in your complaint about Lynn and liberals: The complaint that her arguments and those of many liberals are based primarily on emotion has a long history in the U.S. It buys into two particular binaries:

(1) Women are emotional and therefore irrational. Society (i.e., men in power) does not have to take their arguments seriously unless they become more rational--i.e., more masculine. (2) Liberals are effeminate and their arguments based on emotional appeals. This then taps into the sexism above. Any man who is a liberal is effete and weak, especially on issues of national security, the war on terrorism and Bush-era detention and torture, the military, etc. This was a widely popular characterization of Obama by the Republicans in 2008 (something I was grateful McCain mostly stayed out of, running instead on his own voting record and history).

I want to be careful to say that I do not think that your comments said or implied all of the above. However, I do think that they hooked into these deep cultural attitudes of sexism, and here's why: Lynn made several factual comments which you ignored, choosing instead to stereotype her and other liberals as emotional and irrational. Your comment itself is an emotional appeal because, strangely enough, people have emotional responses to the perception of rationality (there was and is very little rationality in the arguments of powerful men against women).

There is nothing wrong with emotional appeals (I teach students how to argue) so long as it is balanced with concrete facts. We as a society need to stop pretending that such appeals are (1) feminized and (2) irrational. Personally, I would appreciate hearing your responses, but I would prefer that you respond to arguments rather than stereotyping a person.

/*/ Edited for spelling /*/

Edited by GlacierRambler on 08/21/2012 12:02:11 MDT.

Michael Duke
(mpd1690) - F
Re: Re: Sexism? on 08/21/2012 12:35:10 MDT Print View

He said "I find it difficult to discuss or argue with most people on the left because their discourse is based on emotion rather than evidence of facts and history."

Drawing an assumption from that that he is being sexist is wrong. No form of woman was used in his argument. It was a generalization on partisanship, but it was certainly not sexist. Drawing the conclusion that Fred generalizing the left as emotional equates to being feminine is curious.

Edit:

I am pretty sure that Fred was not discrediting her because "Women are emotional and therefore irrational", but rather because the left (according to Fred) is "emotional and therefore irrational". There are no sexist ties to that assumption.

Edited by mpd1690 on 08/21/2012 12:40:54 MDT.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
G.O.P. Approves Strict Anti-Abortion Language in Party Platform on 08/21/2012 13:47:09 MDT Print View

"Republicans approved platform language on Tuesday calling for a constitutional amendment outlawing abortion with no explicit exceptions for cases of rape or incest."

http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/21/g-o-p-approves-strict-anti-abortion-language-in-party-platform/


"Between 33-50% of perpetrators who sexually abuse girls are family members."

http://womensissues.about.com/od/girlsteensyoungwomen/a/10-Facts-About-Child-Sexual-Abuse-Statistics.htm

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Sexism? on 08/21/2012 15:19:29 MDT Print View

Thanks for the explanation but it still quite a stretch in my opinion. I have taken offense when posters have maintained the " emotional woman" argument, but I don't see this here.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Slangin' on 08/21/2012 16:38:20 MDT Print View

"Lynn... I find it difficult to discuss or argue with most people on the left because their discourse is based on emotion rather than evidence of facts and history. It seems that you've added a few rights to the list, which is fine, but to hold the UN up as a model is more than laughable. To slang the opposition with derogatory titles, is a little sad. Peace out."

Hehe, it certainly is easy to rile up you irrational right-wingers ;)

I did not see any sexism in Fred's statement, just a broad brush stoke against liberals, which seems fair given my broad brush stroke against conservatives. However, I did qualify my generalisations (based purely on family affiliations) with the speculation that that nealry half of all Americans can't be bad people, and I'm sure their are many right of centre Americans who do not fully support a far right attitude.

However, I will naturally argue that it strikes me, both emotionally and scientifically, that strongly conservative folks are the emotional/irrational ones. There is probably a good reason why scientists tend to be more liberal in their views than non-scientists, and why conservatives are less likely to even pursue higher education. With a broad enough view of the world, you can come to realise that an "us-versus-them" approach to governing is a poor one, where ultimately everyone loses. To begrudge someone a decent quality of life just because they are less fortunate is not rational IMHO, but obviously it is just an opinion.

Just yesterday, I was reading an interesting 'scientific' article on how our pre-agricultural societies were almost 100% egalitarian, with no property ownership and everything divided equally amongst the society's members, where every member was looked after even if their ability to contribute, through injury, sickness or age, was taken from them. It wasn't really until the advent of land ownership and inheritance practices that came along with it that our society rapidly moved to one of have's and have nots. This is not an emotional argument, purely rational. It is inequity and lack of compassion in our modern world that is, rationally, the source of so much unrest for everyone, even the very wealthy (though they can mitigate their exposure to this unrest because of their ability to throw money at the problem). This unrest cuts across genders, societies, religions and just about every other metric you may choose to measure the health of a society.

Edited by retropump on 08/21/2012 17:24:09 MDT.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Slangin' on 08/21/2012 17:09:58 MDT Print View

Lynn, that was a great post...huge +1

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Slangin' on 08/21/2012 17:15:08 MDT Print View

"Just yesterday, I was reading an interesting 'scientific' article on how or pre-agricultural societies were almost 100% egalitarian, with no property ownership and everything divided equally amongst the society's members, where every member was looked after even if their ability to contribute, through injury, sickness or age, was taken from them. It wasn't really until the advent of land ownership and inheritance practices that came along with it that our society rapidly moved to one of have's and have nots. This is not an emotional argument, purely rational. It is inequity and lack of compassion in our modern world that is, rationally, the source of so much unrest for everyone, even the very wealthy (though they can mitigate their exposure to this unrest because of their ability to throw money at the problem). This unrest cuts across genders, societies, religions and just about every other metric you may choose to measure the health of a society."

What a beautiful post, Lynn. Thank you for speaking on behalf of many of us "liberals".

What could be more rational, indeed?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Slangin' on 08/21/2012 17:37:12 MDT Print View

"but to hold the UN up as a model is more than laughable."

That you find it more than laughable is a sad commentary on how out of touch most Americans are with the values espoused by most of the rest of humanity. It is a prime reason we are steadily losing our moral credibility abroad and increasingly must resort to force to impose our will. Such a situation will not long endure.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012=The Official Guide to Legitimate Rape on 08/21/2012 17:49:16 MDT Print View

"by clarifying that only pregnancies resulting from "forcible rape" would qualify for federally funded abortions. The true meaning of "forcible rape" was never clearly defined"

Sounds a lot like the mentality in some of the more backward parts of the Muslim world. I stress here that I am by no means referring to all, or even most, Muslims, but, rather, some areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan in the first instance. This attitude here in the USA is one more reason I refer to a lot of far right religious types as beardless, turbanless Taliban. They have a lot in common, IMO.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: Slangin' on 08/21/2012 17:53:33 MDT Print View

My main gripe with the UN is that is has no teeth. That is not it's fault, but the fault of the signatory members who are able to block resolutions with their power of threats. So, as usual, might becomes right.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Re: Slangin' on 08/21/2012 19:16:24 MDT Print View

Tom, I agree with you 100% A big +1

I love well thought out debate...and sometimes I wish that I could do that. Good on you all of you!

Harald Hope
(hhope) - M

Locale: East Bay
comical if it wasn't so downright tragic on 08/21/2012 20:26:00 MDT Print View

"I find it difficult to discuss or argue with most people on the left because their discourse is based on emotion rather than evidence of facts and history."

It's odd to keep reading this nonsense, I remember hearing Limbaugh sell this point some 20 years ago, and finding it just as absurd a claim then as it is now. Well, even more now. It just goes to show, the right does their homework better than the center right (aka Democrats), remember the formula, keep the message simple, keep it short, and keep repeating it. Worked for the Germans, and it works here, today, because you see the short talking points get regurgitated without any attempt at critical thought at all. I wish the dems would get a bit more cynical and ruthless so they could actually compete in terms of getting core messages acros, but it's just not their style, sad to say, something about being generally well educated makes using hardcore propaganda techniques just not that appealing emotionally. Or intellectually.

There's been a slew of books published by conservatives noting the ahistorical and totally irrational direction of the modern neo-con movement, John Dean's 'Conservatives without conscience' comes to mind as a particularly well researched one, but there are many others.

It's somewhat odd to find former Reaganites from his inner circle, as well, publishing books expressing extreme concern about the near fascist direction the current neo-conservative faction is taking. That term, 'fascist', is something John Dean discussed at great length, even going to the degree of properly analyzing the roots of the authoritarean personality, something that was of course of some concern to the world post WWII. He avoided the actual word, preferring to call it: the authoritarean personality, a term derived from some research done post WWII, but it's just a polite term we use to avoid calling a spade a spade.

One key takeaway from that particular book is that if you do an actual, rational, fact based analysis of the conservative position, you learn something very interesting, it's not based on anything factual, it's a primarily emotional response.

Now, I could read every book coming out from freaked out old time right wingers, but really, what happens is pretty simple, they get older, they think about stuff, and then they see just how bad the current crop is getting. And I give them a lot of credit for that, that's what an open mind looks like, whether it's on the left or right.

Anytime someone uses that magic boogy man word 'liberal' in current US political discourse, in a derogatory manner, I know that person is not thinking their own thoughts. Those are opinions based on injections of ideology into the uncritical mind.

Nothing wrong with genuine political differences based on something other than watching fox news or listening to right wing polemicists, but there's a whole lot wrong with uncritically aping views that are being generated by highly cynical corporatists whose only dream is to get rid of any and all controls over their actions, ie, deregulation.

Now, if I could meet either a cool old time conservative, who, as a conservative, would find the modern neo-cons to be extremist radicals, having nothing to do with any actual conservative view or position, great. They are around, here and there. No idea why they keep supporting the neocons though, I know a few who in the last election actually voted for Obama because Bush had messed stuff up so badly that they just couldn't allow that to continue.

Just to clarify, there is no left or liberal political faction in the United States beyond a few isolated congress people and maybe one senator. There's a sort of center right group, of whom Obama is a member, that panders blatantly to the financial sector, and other components of the corporate system, not as blatantly as the right would do, but pretty blatantly.

When the poster above noted the other 'Intelligent' countries, she's talking about empirically verifiable statements, for example, math ability, reading levels per age group. The USA is dropping lower and lower in all these. Simple examples are when you see someone noting that someone is being 'rational', when what they mean is: you agree with my biased views, derived mostly from corporate for profit media sources pandering to the corporate system. Kant would roll over in his grave at such an abuse of the term 'reason' or 'rational'.

I'd also totally respect really honest right wingers who just admit that they hate democracy, and want the right to rule things. You can't argue with honest views, you can disagree, but you can't argue.

Personally, I find it surreal to see this discussion here, I mean, we use national parks, wilderness areas, etc, all things that if hardcore rightists would have their ways, would be sold off and privatized and destroyed. Or did I miss the environtalist/nature respecting side of the neo-con platform? Maybe someone can point me to it, must be somewhere.

Or is it just that amazing thing, where the right mouths certain superficial things that trigger certain emotional responses, abortion, anti g ay, whatever, while they cynically plunder and loot our future, all the while getting people to consistently vote against their long term best interests?

I'd love to see an actual alternate party, even better, a real democratic system, parliamentary ideally, so that minority parties could be represented, make deals with other groups who need it for a majority, but as it is, what we have is a focused roughly 5% extremist right sector that the republicans cannot win without, who are more and more ruining the possibility of moderate political compromise. Just look at Romney, he had positions either agreeing with Obama, or to the left of him before he flipflopped to pander to that far right section of the population.

But I have to really laugh when I read words like 'history', or 'rational' coming from people here on the right.

The US deficit spiked under all Republican presidents, Bush helped push, via deregulation, the entire housing and high tech bubbles, and got out just as it was crashing down.

What we need to do is start dealing with material reality, not sit on web forums squawking tired cliches that we don't even know the source of. And material reality shows growth slowing globally, oil production peaking globally, about to go into decline. Capitalist economic systems do not do well in non growth scenarios, nor do they do well in resource restricted scenarios, and trying to generate growth via deficit spending is a bad plan at this particular historical juncture. Unfortunately, when both parties are essentially run by and for the economic system that is floundering, it's pretty unlikely we'll see actually 'rational' policies come from either one, but what is dead certain is that the right will push us to the brink so fast it will make your head spin. That's one reason that some people on the left, what exists of it, actually at times promoting the right, it will get us to the abyss a lot more quickly. History certainly shows that is the case.

The problems we are facing are happening all over the world, one sad sign of American's relative cluelessness is that they think these events are somehow regional, they aren't. The problems can be handled, but not if you let the very entities who are creating them and profiting from them dictate the policies both right and center right parties here advocate.

People in Europe tend to be totally amazed at how relatively uneducated and uncultured Americans are, and it really is amazing. Something about raising a few generations on tv I suspect has a lot to do with it, as well as one of the worst diets in the world, you are, remember, what you eat. I had a logic professor in college, I asked him if he'd seen a decline in his student's ability to do critical reasoning and logic, he was older, had seen the 60s/70s era, the first real tv generation, that is, come in, and he said, yes, without any question. Latest research confirms this overall trend. Not to mention the current epidemic levels of obesity in this country, caused by the bad diets, corporate food junk, and so on. And the level of legal drug addiction in this country, pharmaceuticals, particularly mood altering ones. Can't blame people for getting depressed, I mean, really, they aren't wrong.

Let's see, the current US right is: pro coal, pro deregulation, anti environment, well, really, what they are is whatever the far right think tanks funded by big commodity extraction entities, like coal companies, oil companies, and so on, tell them to be. Used to be that the right had people with actual principles in office here and there, still are a few, but they seem to be getting older now, retiring, which is a real drag.

Edited by hhope on 08/21/2012 21:01:27 MDT.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: comical if it wasn't so downright tragic on 08/21/2012 21:10:19 MDT Print View

Harold, that was a very nice rant. Though I mostly agree with what you wrote, I take one exception:

"When the poster above noted the other 'Intelligent' countries, she's talking about empirically verifiable statements, for example, math ability, reading levels per age group."

I don't consider this intelligence, just educated. Big difference. But also, the citizens of many other countries seem to have a better "social intelligence", something that is sadly not taught as part of the three Rs. I notice some schools (can't speak for America) are also teaching "emotional intelligence", or so they call it. Both the social and emotional curricula seem to take a lot of material from Buddhist teachings (I note that I still consider this education, rather than true intelligence, but it does make kids more resilient and open-minded).

But I agree how little choice there really seems to be in American politics in this day and age. You can have middle right, or far right. If you don't fall into either of these categories then, in the current political system, there really IS no point in voting. Nothing democratic going on there!

Harald Hope
(hhope) - M

Locale: East Bay
agree and disagree on 08/21/2012 21:23:17 MDT Print View

Lynn, agreed that education is not intelligence, but spending your childhood watching tv as your primary socializing activity, or now, also, computer gaming and that stuff, is very bad for the development of reason and critical thinking. Also, apparently, for empathy and other important socializing things. Some might suggest it's fatal. Talking about this, or our diet, as these highly damaging factors influence and shape our brains at young ages, is almost a taboo now in this country. These are facts, hours spent before screens rather than the real world, the way that alters the brain, not talked about much, if you notice?

That wasn't a rant, by the way, heh, it's just so surreal to see people on a backpacking forum promoting a political party that is against everything natural, anti environment, anti regulation, anti everything that makes nature a great place to go to. But that's a sign of the lack of reasoning I believe, simply not being able to connect dots, falling for emotion rather than thinking things through critically.

Critical thinking is, however, I'd argue, a sign of intelligence, along with some other things. And critical thinking is in increasingly short supply in our political discourse. I tend to differentiate shrewdness from critical thinking, some of the far right guys are pretty shrewd, and they know how to press emotional buttons that will make voters totally ignore facts, like supporting outsourcing and job loss, and so on, while aggressively promoting anti g ay positions, well, promoting them before they get caught in the men's room with a young boy, I should say.

My personal take on intelligence is that it reflects the amount of data you need to absorb before arriving at a reasonably coherent and correct conclusion. The less you need, the smarter you are. Poorly trained reason, of course, doesn't tend to arrive at a correct conclusion, unless it's dealing with strictly empirical things, based on actual first hand experience, then you can see the process, a good contractor might have the most ridiculous political views, but be really smart at what he actually touches and works with. Ideally one knows when one has left the region of skill and experience, but that ideal isn't achieved much now.

I also suspect there's a few other important triggers at early ages, learning more than one language, for example, seems to do things to the brain that is pretty positive.

But I don't believe any actual data can be found to support a claim that americans are getting smart or smarter, and a lot can be found that negates that claim. So to point that out, should be a ground for concern. Rote learning systems like 'no child left behind', of course, do nothing to help humans get smarter or achieve wisdom or anything else.

What I have to disagree with is the notion of when faced with a very bad party, against everything most people here should allegedly be in favor of, and a less bad, but still quite bad, party, you should hand the election to the very bad one. That's a dangerous strategy, it worked well in Germany in the 30s you may recall, well, it worked well if you were on the far right, that is. Remember, the authoritarian personality needs a bad guy, if we don't have communists anymore, well, then, adapt and update, now we have 'liberals'. Doesn't quite have the same zip to it, I mean, liberals were responsible for creating huge parts of this country's infrastructure, doesn't quite work as well to get that evil thing going.

I do admit though, when I read some guys posting here verbatim repetitions of fox and limbaugh and other talking points as if it were reasoning, yes, I find that sort of sad. I'm sure that, if you get them offguard, in person, a few drinks, maybe they will actually say what they feel more honestly, and then you can have a discussion worth having. That's what I've found when dealing with reasonably sharp and not too stupid right leaning types.

Edited by hhope on 08/21/2012 21:35:44 MDT.

Harald Hope
(hhope) - M

Locale: East Bay
and that's that on 08/21/2012 21:52:32 MDT Print View

I like the Plain's Indian's practice when having debates, you state your case, in the best way you can, and then you sit down.

Plus, this is Chaff, and has no point in any greater scheme of things, and these threads fade into the ethersphere, wasted bytes carried over wires.

One thing I do find, however, after years of working online, is that in most cases, anyone who engages in 'connect the quote' type rebuttals generally actually has nothing to to say. See the 'carbon flame war' thread for a great example of that problem. Or they are promoting some agenda or ideology, or, in worst cases, are actually shills for some interest group. Not the case here in this thread, thank heaven, but it happens a lot.

In other words, put your case as clearly and coherently as you can, and do make an effort to ask yourself where you got your views. Are they based on real research, study, reading, ongoing? Or is it something that seeped into your brain while watching tv or listening to the radio? The art of critical thinking and reasoning is learning how to tell real stuff apart from fluff and lies and misdirections. Where did you get your ideas from, where did your brain get trained in critical thinking and reasoning? It doesn't happen magically, in most cases. If you don't know, then why do you believe you possess these skills? That's the general 'you', as in, 'one'. Ego isn't an answer.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
The REAL Purpose of Chaff on 08/21/2012 22:01:48 MDT Print View

"Plus, this is Chaff, and has no point in any greater scheme of things, and these threads fade into the ethersphere, wasted bytes carried over wires."

Quite wrong, my friend. Quite wrong. You've missed the point entirely.

The true purpose of Chaff is to help one weed out who gets an invite for a group trip and who doesn't.

Harald Hope
(hhope) - M

Locale: East Bay
darn it on 08/21/2012 22:29:18 MDT Print View

You are right, it is a good filter, there are a few people here I'd like to run across on a trail, you can spot them pretty easily, since they are thoughtful and tend to have a deep reverence for nature, and even in some cases appear to have found something very much resembling wisdom at some point out there. Not many, I'll admit, but just enough to make it worth reading a bit more.

Given that primary role of Chaff, if my goal is to go solo in most cases, as, oddly, is the goal of the people I'd most like to meet on the trail, hmmm... food for thought. However you're right to note that actual communication is rarely the actual point of posting things online. Sometimes, but not very often.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
bubbles on 08/22/2012 11:15:55 MDT Print View

@ Harold

"The US deficit spiked under all Republican presidents, Bush helped push, via deregulation, the entire housing and high tech bubbles, and got out just as it was crashing down."

If you want to blame the housing bubble on Bush, you have lost any credibility that was offered. In an effort to make sure everyone had a house, the Fed government arm twisted lenders into loans that should never have been written. I don't want to get into all the Fannies and Freddies, derivatives, tranches, and so on... but the ball started rolling with a Democratic president, was accelerated by another Democrat, and overseen by a Democratic congressman. It's another example of the Federal government creating false economies and unintended consequences while trying to look like they care. It always amazes me how people can assume a regulated industry is an efficient and honest one. Or, how the EPA will keep us clean and safe but turn around and force us to use an additive like MTBE. Lets use the less efficient ethanol and then wonder why corn prices go up.

I have to wonder, given the track record, why anyone would want the Feds involved in anything. If you don’t believe the recovery, or lack of it, can be partially (some would say primarily) attributed to the stuff coming out of DC, I’d say look around. I know business owners personally that want to hire, but are sitting on their hands until the health care dust settles.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Robber Barons on 08/22/2012 13:26:53 MDT Print View

Can you say "robber barons"?

None of these problems could have reached the proportions they did without the scam
artists. Just because the gumint is one step behind the crooks and polluters doesn't
mean the feds caused the problem.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: agree and disagree on 08/22/2012 14:49:49 MDT Print View

Hi Harold

Seems like we might be disagreeing over semantics, as what you call 'intelligence' and 'education' don't seem to jibe with mine. Never-the-less, I pretty much agree that diet and social culture (or in this case lack of it) due to the rapid uptake of TV, gaming and the online social networks, have contributed to a travesty for our youth. But an education which focuses solely on rote learning isn't helping the situation either. Critical thinking can definitely be taught, with varying degrees of success, to most people.

For the record, I consider 'intelligence' to be an inborn capacity that can either be nurtured through good education and life experiences, or stagnated from lack of them. I consider education to be giving as much useful information to each individual, keeping in mind that not all children can learn the same things with the same ease. I consider the synthesis of intelligence and education into a knowledgeable and productive, even happy, citizen to be 'wisdom'. But it all starts with education. Without it, even potentially intelligent folks remain ignorant. Well that's my working concepts anyway.

So I don't advocate free education for the sake of it if it is not useful education.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
bubble baron on 08/22/2012 15:25:04 MDT Print View

@ David

If you don't believe the feds were the instigators in the housing bubble, I guess we'll have to agree to disagree. Anyone near the mortgage / banking industry can tell you where credit standards went and why they went there. It was forced. The false market of unintended consequences had to pop sooner or later and people in the industry knew it was coming.

I think we can both agree that there were a lot of shell games going where some profited and some lost their tails. Some smart people came up with some really creative ways to market crappy investments because the feds were forcing the market. Lots of people didn't have a chair when the music ended. The tax payers will never be through paying for it. Asshats like Frank, will enjoy his government pension and profits on the speaking tour.

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
Housing Bubble on 08/22/2012 19:09:07 MDT Print View

Fred's correct about the feds being behind the housing bubble.

Check this video:


The Bush Video announcing the American Dream Downpayment Fundprogram is linked below:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kNqQx7sjoS8.

Talking about the feds always reminds me of Pogo's famous quote: "We have met the enemy and he is us!" or something like that.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Housing Bubble on 08/22/2012 19:26:51 MDT Print View

"Fred's correct about the feds being behind the housing bubble."

Which begs the question of who's behind the Feds in this age of "the best government money can buy".

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
Behind the Feds on 08/22/2012 19:34:25 MDT Print View

Prince Harry

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Housing Bubble on 08/22/2012 19:34:47 MDT Print View

"Which begs the question of who's behind the Feds in this age of "the best government money can buy"."

That's easy. We are. The voters who put the 'leaders' in place to erect the structure that works best for them, and who allow these 'leaders' to do all sorts of things in our name.

People love to throw blame around - it's the Dems. No, it's the Repubs. No, it's the rich.

Sorry, I'll unabashedly say it's us, the voters. It all starts with us.

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
bete noir on 08/22/2012 20:03:14 MDT Print View

Did you ever consider we could vote ourselves right out of a "democracy"

Sorry for the flip answer Tom. It's getting late here on the east coast. There's reams on info on the idea Fred is espousing. It all started with the C.R.A Community Reinvestment Act. You could have googled "the Big Lie" @ a year ago and more than half the first page of hits would be articles about the mortgage crisis being caused by lending to minorities compelled by the "feds"

This despite at least 80% of the loans and loan failures involving "non-minorities" Probably north of 90% in total $ volume And also a large majority, again probably more than 80% of the loans being made by private lenders and not involving the GSA's. The GSA's did take some hits/losses when they belatedly/desperately got in the game late in '06, 07.'08 since they were losing so much volume to private lenders....... regulatory failure.

If this topic stays live maybe I'll post some articles I have archived tomorrow.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Less regulation? on 08/23/2012 10:38:59 MDT Print View

So the answer to this is less regulation? How about proper evaluation and adjustment of
policy over time to correct unintended problems?

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Regulated to bankruptcy on 08/23/2012 11:48:46 MDT Print View

@ Cola

The mortgage/banking industry is heavily regulated. Private lenders are subject to all of the government rules. Maybe I'm misunderstanding your post.

Funny how the heavily regulated industries alway seem to be filing chapter supthin', or getting bailed out by the tax payer, or making a few scoundrels filthy rich.

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
Regulation on 08/23/2012 13:03:04 MDT Print View

Yes David

No Fred

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Housing Bubble on 08/23/2012 18:12:17 MDT Print View

"That's easy. We are. The voters who put the 'leaders' in place to erect the structure that works best for them, and who allow these 'leaders' to do all sorts of things in our name."

Ultimately, but until people wake up those who pay directly for the best government money can buy are pretty much writing the rules and regulations, including the loopholes that allow politicians a fig leaf to present to the masses while allowing their patrons to conduct business as usual under the radar. I don't blame either party solely, nor do I blame the masses entirely. There are some pretty cunning people involved in this mess that are very adept at concealing what is going on from poorly educated people just struggling to get by in an increasingly complex world that evolves at warp speed in tandem with technological change. Yes, it could all change in one election if all voters were as aware as some of the folks on this website, but that is not a realistic expectation given the human condition. A democracy depends not only on an educated citizenry, but a certain level of decency and morality on the part of both those who seek political power and those who are gifted with a higher level of intelligence but choose to pursue power thru business and the accumulation of wealth. My two cents.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Regulated to bankruptcy on 08/24/2012 15:37:34 MDT Print View

Good to get out hiking for a few days - but I missed chaff : )

Housing Bubble caused by ending of Glass Stegal. Now investment banks, commercial banks, and insurnace companies can merge. So, the same bank approves mortgages (which they make a small amount on) which can then be packaged into derivatives (which they make huge amounts on). Huge demand for more mortgages so they can create more derivatives. No reason to be critical of loan approval.

We have only half re-instated Glass Stegal so another financial collapse is likely.

Cognitive Dissonance - when someone believes something and can not hear conflicting information

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Rape on 08/24/2012 15:43:44 MDT Print View

What is it the guy said "a woman has ways to prevent pregnancy"?

I believe that's to not have an orgasm

So the Republican male politician is saying if a woman has an orgasm it's not a legitimate rape?

I don't think males, or politicians, or Republicans have a right to even talk about rape except to have empathy as best we can.

And it's amazing that the right wingers who control the Republican party and only care about enriching themselves, can say awful things like that, and then a bunch of religious people will vote for them.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: New York Times chart on 08/24/2012 15:46:36 MDT Print View

Michael, what is it you don't like about the deficit chart?

That the CBO analysis is wrong?

That the New York Times graphing ability is poor?

Or you just don't like the fact that the deficit is because of programs voted in during the Bush Administration, not communist/socialist programs created by Obama and the Democrats?

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Rape on 08/24/2012 16:08:08 MDT Print View

"What is it the guy said "a woman has ways to prevent pregnancy"?

I believe that's to not have an orgasm"

Ummmmmm, orgasms are not necessary for pregnancy.....

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Regulated to bankruptcy on 08/24/2012 16:31:27 MDT Print View

"Funny how the heavily regulated industries alway seem to be filing chapter supthin', or getting bailed out by the tax payer, or making a few scoundrels filthy rich"

That's called The Golden rule, Fred: Them what has the gold makes the rules. And regulations. ;0)

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/24/2012 16:35:18 MDT Print View

Brad, I agree - we will have to agree to disagree : )

Yes economy is bad so you can't claim based on that evidence that either deficit or tax cuts help the economy


"See that is the mentality of the public sector. They don't hire people because a job needs to get done, they hire to just put people on the payroll."

Having a one time federal program to send (borrowed) money to keep teachers, firefighters, and police will prevent those people from being layed off which will improve the unemployment statistic. If they receive pay, they'll spend it, some of it with you, the small businessman, which will improve the economy. These jobs need to be done, not just "make work".


"We are starving for engineers, scientist, technology, etc. I would hire 3 or 4 more people tomorrow if I could find the right people."

I have heard the same thing from other engineers - plenty of jobs for trained people.

If it didn't cost so much, I bet more people would get technical degrees - free market. And we need more talking about it like when President Kennedy talked about people getting jobs in science.


"How much more would you like the taxpayers to subsidize education? You have to cut the cost of education and not look to the govt to subsidize. Where is that money going to come from? Spend, spend, spend."

In the 1970s I got engineer degree. Heavily subsidized by the government. I had to borrow total of $3000 which is $6000 in today dollars. My dad's was free with the GI bill after WWII. People like us are responsible for the high tech boom that followed.

If we subsidized education like that today, we could create another boom that is hard to imagine what it would be today.

Where does the money come from? Make everyone pay their fair share. Quit spending so much on the military which makes our security worse. Quit subsidizing big industries like oil, coal, agriculture,... Control medical costs which is screwing up everything - quit paying huge amount for ineffective care. No "silver bullet" solution.


I just hate that the Republicans told us they were going to lower our taxes, but they lowered taxes on super-rich and big corporation but only gave us a token decrease. Do you remember that check George Bush sent to all of us with a small, one time tax rebate?

Now they're saying they're going to lower taxes on the "job creators" (focus group tested phrase for super-rich and big corporations) and you're falling for it again - they're not going to lower your taxes.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Rape on 08/24/2012 16:38:40 MDT Print View

"Ummmmmm, orgasms are not necessary for pregnancy....."

I watched show on Discovery Channel or PBS saying this improves the chance of getting pregnant.

What other ways do women have to prevent pregnancy?

Whatever that disgusting male politician meant was awful

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Rape on 08/24/2012 17:32:19 MDT Print View

"What other ways do women have to prevent pregnancy?"

Just say "no"? ;0)

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
Fatherhood on 08/24/2012 21:38:08 MDT Print View

I heard an amazing fact; I think it was Wednesday,from a female attorney who was raped at one point in her life and now evidently specializes in representing rape victims. This was on a network TV interview and wasn't challenged so....

This attorney stated that in like 33 or 34 of the states the male rapist retains his full parental rights. So for ex the rape victim could potentially have to coordinate all manner of child-rearing details/ scheduling etc etc etc and you haven't seen etc until you've been around divorced or separated parents working out child rearing details........ with the perpetrator until the child reached adulthood?

If that's not mind-boggling I don't know what is. I guess those rights could be terminated by a court action but such termination is not automatic by any means and evidently the retention of those rights is the standard in those states....which obviously the attorney didn't read out the 33/or so states.

Imagine the having to coordinate visitation rights with your rapist.

This reminds me of another famous saying; I forget by whom: "If males had a uterus abortion would be a sacrament."

HK Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/24/2012 21:59:16 MDT Print View

I think Jimmy Kimmel (late night comic) got it right. The American Presidential election will be a 2 billion dollar "Comedy Central" Roast of both Romney and Obama with all that money flying around.

I still think both sides should compromise in the near term for the Average Joe/Jane in the "here-and-now" especially since Treasury interest has been very cheap; if the American voter is comfortable privatizing SS, Medicare vouchers, blah, blah, .. vs. government healthcare, retirement pay-as-u-go, blah, blah ... then so be it.

(ed/br.)

Edited by hknewman on 08/25/2012 08:55:05 MDT.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
What's in your pocket? on 08/27/2012 08:10:19 MDT Print View

@ jerry

"If we subsidized education like that today, we could create another boom that is hard to imagine what it would be today.

Where does the money come from? Make everyone pay their fair share."

I didn't want to qoute the entire thread but how would you feel if I kicked in your door, stole all your stuff, and passed it out to the less fortunate? Why people think that voting for someone, that will do just that, is any different, baffles me.

Gov't spending is always less efficient because of the middle man. This country has prospered in spite of the gov't, not because of it. For the people that want to toss out the constitution and move to a more socialist form, there are plenty of examples floating around to study.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: What's in your pocket? on 08/27/2012 08:36:12 MDT Print View

Fred

Take the period after WWII - cooperation between government and private - amazing results

And people patriotically paid their taxes, maybe with a little grumbling. The wealthy paid a bigger percentage of their income.

We need to get back to that "American Exceptionalism" that we had between WWII and 1980.

Government spending is not always less efficient. Sometimes private spending is inefficient - take Enron or the big banks a few years ago or ...

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
What's in your pocket? on 08/27/2012 09:44:05 MDT Print View

@ jerry

"Government spending is not always less efficient. Sometimes private spending is inefficient - take Enron or the big banks a few years ago or ..."

The model of FED gov't redistribution is always less efficient because the collection and payout creates an additional expense. There is no way around it. Taxpayers PAY for it.

A traded company involved in accounting fraud? Yep, I feel sorry for the honest people that lost their shirts, and I wish only the worst for those responsible, but evil exist. Companies also fail for all the right reasons. Not everyone makes it, and not everyone should get a participation medal. I wish everyone was prosperous but it's just not human nature. When you invest in a company or buy their stock, it's a risk. A better analogy to federal redistribution would be for you to send me your paycheck, I'll cash it and send you 57% back with a note telling you how much good I did with your money.

This country was never designed to have the fed's decisions impacting us all as it does now. Creating false economies, propping up the ones too big to fail, and subsidizing the ones they hamstrung... it's insanity.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Re: Fatherhood on 08/27/2012 09:58:25 MDT Print View

"Imagine the having to coordinate visitation rights with your rapist. "

Up to half of those rapists are also the father,uncle, grandfather or brother of the victim.

Requiring parental notification takes on a whole new meaning.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: What's in your pocket? on 08/27/2012 10:25:35 MDT Print View

Fred

"Redistribution" is the focus group tested word that you guys use for "taxes"

I get it. You're using Phsycology/Propoganda/Orwellian techniques to get people to vote against their own best interests.

The cost of the collection and payout is an insignificant portion of the budget.

The federal government has always made decisions that affect us like they do now. Obviously there are more people now and there are different problems now. You just want to re-write history to support your extreme position.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Redistribution? on 08/27/2012 10:46:58 MDT Print View

Then you pick a word. I'm tired of being taxed, and seeing it pizzed off like it's not really hurting anything and our debt doesn't matter. Whatever you want to call it. I could give two cents about a focus group or what you care to call it, but pick an accurate word. And...If you can come up with an efficient government program, as stated, I'd be glad to hear about it.

We probably both want the same things, we just have different ways to get there. I don't have an agenda really, I've got questions. Why are we going down this road when it's already been tested? I continue to be amazed and confused.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Redistribution? on 08/27/2012 11:16:18 MDT Print View

"We probably both want the same things"

I think you're right

The right wingers that are in control of the Republicans and partly in control of Democrats just want to increase the wealth of themselves - super-wealthy and big corporation - redistribution of wealth

They want us to be polarized arguing about abortion or homosexuality or whatever while they pick our pockets

I think every dollar the government spends should be scrutinized - there is a lot of waste

Half the federal budget is spent on social security and medicare. We can discuss if that's too much

Quarter of the federal budget is military. We should quit making weapons we don't need, getting into indefinite wars that actually make our security worse but enrich contractors, having bases all over the world,...

The other quarter is spread across many smaller programs so it's harder to come up with meaningful cuts. It's easy just to emotionally talk about "lazy welfare mothers"...

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Whats wrong with wealth? on 08/27/2012 12:03:51 MDT Print View

"The right wingers that are in control of the Republicans and partly in control of Democrats just want to increase the wealth of themselves - super-wealthy and big corporation - redistribution of wealth"

Reading between the lines, it sounds like you consider wealth a bad thing. I enjoy seeing people prosper and succeed. I wish I made more myself. I don't have anything against people who have hit home runs or inherited a load. As long as they do it legally and ethically, I don’t care. It’s none of my business what they do with it. I’ve never really understood why someone who worked their tails off and succeeded owes more, than the guy that decided to take life easy.

Anyway, so we’re clear: My beef is with the size, power, and inefficiency of the federal government. Social experiments with taxpayer money, as each state sees fit is fine by me. Just don’t expect a conservative, fiscally responsible state to bail out a failure and let the voters vote with their feet, if need be.

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Wealth on 08/27/2012 12:40:29 MDT Print View

Most people don't under stand the *magnitude* of wealth.

If you lived 100 years, and "earned" $0.10 every SECOND ($6/min, $360/hr) of your 100 year life, you would not be in the club of people with the wealth needed to influence States.

If you lived a thousand years, you still would not have the wealth of this club, but if you saved for generations, you could get there eventually.

Edited by redmonk on 08/27/2012 12:51:29 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Whats wrong with wealth? on 08/27/2012 13:35:37 MDT Print View

Fred

Nothing's wrong with being wealthy - you are incorrectly reading between the lines

But when people buy off the government to change rules to make a few super wealthy and the vast majority poorer, that's wrong

For example, why do Romney, Obama, and Buffet pay 15% tax rate? Average person pays 30%, but it's more like 40% when you include the employer portion of social security.

Why do oil companies get special subsidies and tax breaks so they pay zero federal tax? Actually get money back.

Why did they abolish Glass Stegal so big banks could make big bucks? Which eventually brought down the economy.

etc.

When I was working I always saved 10% or 20% of my income so it bugs me when the government pays out too much to people that squandered their income. I can see why people make bad decisions with all the sophisticated marketing we're barraged with

Every government program should be scrutinized to make sure it's efficient and effective

But, the reality is that politics is inevitable - there will be ineffective programs that are more because a politician is getting something for his district

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: Redistribution? on 08/27/2012 14:50:32 MDT Print View

"And...If you can come up with an efficient government program, as stated, I'd be glad to hear about it."

Well, I think you only have to look at the vast majority of western countries that have universal health care to see that this is, at the very least, one area of government intervention where it can actually save the country as a whole a LOT of money, compared to the US.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Point of thanks on 08/27/2012 16:01:07 MDT Print View

Thanks for helping my point. If the Fed would have been limited to the size of its intended use, any influence on it, wouldn't provide much benefit. As it is, the effects typically hit us all and hit often.

Edited by BFThorp on 08/27/2012 16:02:26 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: What's in your pocket? on 08/27/2012 16:52:21 MDT Print View

"For the people that want to toss out the constitution and move to a more socialist form, there are plenty of examples floating around to study."

+1 Maybe we could start with countries like Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark? They seem to be at least as free as we are and still manage to take pretty good care of their people. Some might even say they take better care of their people overall. What do you think, Fred?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Fatherhood on 08/27/2012 16:58:34 MDT Print View

"Up to half of those rapists are also the father,uncle, grandfather or brother of the victim."

For whom the Republicans don't want to make an exception to their proposed prohibition of abortion. Gotta luv them "Family Values".

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Redistribution? @ Fred on 08/27/2012 17:03:38 MDT Print View

"I'm tired of being taxed, and seeing it pizzed off like it's not really hurting anything and our debt doesn't matter."

Including the defense budget? Do $500 toilet seats pizz you off? $2,000,000,000 aircraft carriers when we've already got more of them than all other nations combined? Or a total "defense" budget bigger than the next 10 nations combined. I'm just curious about which areas of government spending pizz you off. Is it all government spending, or just entitlements and other programs that benefit the less fortunate?

Oh, I almost forgot our $3,000,000,000 in aid to Israel, an advanced, prosperous nation if ever there was one. Does that pizz you off?

Edited by ouzel on 08/27/2012 17:30:43 MDT.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Redistribution? @ Fred on 08/27/2012 17:43:31 MDT Print View

A huge +1 Tom on all three of your posts. Well said

David Lutz
(davidlutz)

Locale: Bay Area
Let's talk Nordic on 08/27/2012 17:45:57 MDT Print View

Tom -

Do you see any potential pitfalls in attempting to deploy programs that seem to work in countries of 5-10 million people to a country of 330+ million? How realistic is it really for us to emulate Sweden?

The Nordic countries have strict policies that would never fly with the Left here.

Plus, everyone knows that the money raised from $500 toilet seats is diverted to fund secret alien indoctrination centers.

Edited by davidlutz on 08/27/2012 17:48:09 MDT.

Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - M

Locale: Southeast
Re: Re: Redistribution? @ Fred on 08/27/2012 17:47:16 MDT Print View

What's $2,000,000,000 billion for an aircraft carrier when we can pay $36,000,000,000 for these bad boys?

osprey

Ryan

Edited by ViolentGreen on 08/27/2012 18:02:42 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Redistribution? @ Fred on 08/27/2012 17:55:51 MDT Print View

"What's a $2,000,000,000 billion for an aircraft carrier when we can pay $36,000,000,000 for these bad boys?"

Now we're talkin, Ryan! Do I hear $37,000,000,000? C'mon guys, who's going to up the ante in the Penta-thon?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/27/2012 18:00:20 MDT Print View

"Do you see any potential pitfalls in attempting to deploy programs that seem to work in countries of 5-10 million people to a country of 330+ million? How realistic is it really for us to emulate Sweden?"

Very good point, David, and I totally agree that trying to apply any of the Nordic systems across the board would fail here. Indeed, part of our problem is that we have simply become too big and diverse to be a truly free, cohesive society. However, I do think there are lessons to be learned from their experience, as well as from their value system.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/27/2012 18:19:32 MDT Print View

Both the Veterans Administration and Medicare work fairly good here with a sizeable percentage of our population. Either of these could be scaled up.

With the Veterans Administration, all the doctors and hospitals are employees. That's probably overly socialistic.

Medicare would work. Need to fix the problems with precriptions though. And medical costs in general, but that is a national problem we need to fix regardless.

The problem is that the pharmaceutical, healthcare,... companies have bought off our government so solutions are difficult until we address that.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/27/2012 18:22:46 MDT Print View

If the federal government was reduced to almost nothing, then the country could be divided into 50 separate governments. Kinda how it was supposed to be in the first place... The states could do their own thing and implement their own programs. Each state could have their own welfare and their own universal health care or if they didn't want that stuff, nobody would force them to have it or tax them for it. If the federal income tax was eliminated and states implemented their own high income taxes, they could fund these things and probably in a more efficient way. The best thing is, if the states screw something up, only that state suffers and not they entire country. This seems like a really common sense idea, but people give you blank stares or a "whatever" if you try to discuss this.
I mean, why the hell do we have a federal education department? Our country is way too big this.

Edited by justin_baker on 08/27/2012 18:24:05 MDT.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/27/2012 18:26:24 MDT Print View

Justin, sorry but that idea would never work

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
efficiency of large collective public enterprises on 08/27/2012 18:59:17 MDT Print View

AKA gummit burotcracies:

Paul Krugman
July 6, 2009, 8:24 AM
Administrative costs

"These administrative spending numbers have been challenged on the grounds that they exclude some aspects of Medicare’s administrative costs, such as the expenses of collecting Medicare premiums and payroll taxes, and because Medicare’s larger average claims because of its older enrollees make its administrative costs look smaller relative to private plan costs than they really are.

However, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has found that administrative costs under the public Medicare plan are less than 2 percent of expenditures, compared with approximately 11 percent of spending by private plans under Medicare Advantage. This is a near perfect “apples to apples” comparison of administrative costs, because the public Medicare plan and Medicare Advantage plans are operating under similar rules and treating the same population."

(And even these numbers may unduly favor private plans: A recent General Accounting Office report found that in 2006 Medicare Advantage plans spent 83.3 percent of their revenue on medical expenses, with 10.1 percent going to non-medical expenses and 6.6 percent to profits—a 16.7 percent administrative share.)

I'm pretty sure ( this is me now not Paul Krugman) The Social Security Administration also operates under 3%.

Lies I tell ya! All LIES!!

If anyone out there knows of a Hedge Fund or a Mutual Fund (an index fund would be nice) operating at LOWER costs please let us all know NOW!

PS: Ryan, I was lucky enough from the standpoint of curiosity to see one of those fly by when it circled the Wright Brothers National Monument. Pretty amazing.....hard to see where it's much more than a really cool and VERY expensive and somewhat dangerous toy however.

Edited by obxcola on 08/27/2012 19:05:03 MDT.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/28/2012 01:01:36 MDT Print View

"Both the Veterans Administration and Medicare work fairly good here with a sizeable percentage of our population. Either of these could be scaled up."


With tons of corruption and waste. Another great idea! Do you ever stop and read the propaganda you spew Jerry?

I know there are tons of problems, but the solution you espew is worse.


And as for your graph, I have covered it before and if you decided to ignore the problems I'm not going to repost them again.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/28/2012 07:36:32 MDT Print View

Michael

If you tell Medicare people you're going to take it away, they complain loudly, so it must be somewhat effective. My wife and mom get medicare and are fairly happy. It costs too much, as does all medical care in the U.S.

There are some rules, like SS has to reimburse claims within 30 days or some such, that make it more difficult to prevent some abuse. A lot of room to reduce costs.

I remember you objecting to my graph, but I don't remember you ever saying why. Must be #3 - you just don't like the data : )

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
50 States on 08/28/2012 08:01:27 MDT Print View

@ Ken

"Justin, sorry but that idea would never work"
I can't tell if you are being sarcastic or sincere. It's kinda the way it was designed.

@ Tom

We are broke. The next time our debt is downgraded and the cost of money increases, we'll be even broker. :-) Programs that are subsidized and still losing money should be phased out. Amtrac and the Post office get it because those are the first ones I think of. Subsidies all/most go... and the Fed stays out of the markets. No more embargos, and no more solar and wind money. Let the markets decide.

No more money handed out overseas, friends or enemies. Federal agencies, like the department of education, agriculture, blah blah blah, are scaled down or gone completely. The military is very inefficient in the way they do business and it costs us billions. Scaling back is fine with me if we change the way we approach these conflicts. We have got to take the gloves off and quit trying to be the world's police.

Medicare is all but done and it has so many holes it's funny. Doctors are turning MC patients away as we speak and the fraud is nonstop. Social Security is broke, but it was part of the general fund anyway. Most of the problems we talk about, healthcare, welfare, education, etc, weren't intended to be a federal issue.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 08:27:59 MDT Print View

Fred

"We are broke. The next time our debt is downgraded and the cost of money increases, we'll be even broker."

Debt downgraded because Rs wouldn't agree to extend debt authorization. Funny thing is, there was then a move towards U.S. bonds - the safest investment people can make. I think that shows the downgrade was unwarranted.


The Post Office is losing money because the Rs snuck through a provision while the Ds were sleeping, to fund 70 years of pension in 10 years. Without that artificial cost the Post Office would be doing fine.

But, with computerization, long term, the Post Office will have to adapt. They could eliminate Saturday delivery. They could reduce hours for low volume post offices, or contract it out to a private business. Maybe sell government bonds and things?


"Scaling back is fine with me if we change the way we approach these conflicts. We have got to take the gloves off and quit trying to be the world's police."

That seems self inconsistent. When someone does a terrorist act against us, we should treat it like a police action, not taking the gloves off and attacking a randomly selected country : )


"Social Security is broke, but it was part of the general fund anyway."

Social security is not broke - funded for many years. At some point we will have to fix it like Reagan did and has been done before. Or payments will have to be scaled back to 70%. But that has some assumptions about the economy and stuff so it could be better or worse.

But, I agree it's "part of the general fund" because the "trust fund" is "invested" in government bonds. That money was spent on bombs and such. If we are to start spending the trust fund on SS payments, we will either have to raise taxes, cut other spending, or borrow more money. SS should have balanced taxes and payments each year. As the baby boomers retire, either payments should be reduced or taxes raised. The "trust fund" was just a piggy bank to spend on programs without collecting income tax.


"Most of the problems we talk about, healthcare, welfare, education, etc, weren't intended to be a federal issue."

Article I, section 8 - The Congress shall have Power to lay and collect taxes, Duties, Imposts, and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide the common Defence and general Welfare of the United Staes

I think that contrdicts your claim

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 09:08:39 MDT Print View

Jerry, I was serious. Look to Texas as an example. The Feds would never let it happen. Not to mention the pandoras box that would be opened

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 09:14:55 MDT Print View

I agree Ken

The idea that the federal government is limited to just the military is a fringe idea that has recently gained some more widespread popularity

Maybe the popularity is because the right wingers in control of the Rs and half control of the Ds can use it to justify cutting programs for middle Americans and increasing programs to enrich the super-rich

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 09:27:08 MDT Print View

Jerry ya think (sarcasm), but yes that is true (serious)....unfortunately. What is interesting is that the far, far right have taken over the Republican party. The issues that they are bringing to the fore front makes it sound like they want us to go back to the 1950's. Oh and the ignorant starements by dumb, white piliticians over womens reproductive rights .........women and the middle, working class, working poor, and the habitual poor have a lot to lose in this election.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
blame game on 08/28/2012 11:41:20 MDT Print View

Jerry

"Debt downgraded because Rs wouldn't agree to extend debt authorization."

We can't kick the can anymore. Downgrades unwarranted?

"to fund 70 years of pension in 10 years"

So all that time the Dems had control, they weren't funding the pensions? Where has that happened before? Say it aint so. I love it when the clean up crew gets blamed for the spill.

Read the writings Sec 1; Article 8 is not the blank check for the feds to be in anything and everything.

You sound like an intelligent guy. If a program is paid for/funded by the Fed, then the program is broke. Writing IOUs and printing money, doesn't make the program solvent. I love this discussion and seeing people point the finger, or claim to be for fiscal responsiblity but demand their pet projects stay safe. It's going to get us eventually or probably already has and we haven't hit the wall yet.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Funny stuff on 08/28/2012 12:22:38 MDT Print View

Ken

"What is interesting is that the far, far right have taken over the Republican party."

Nevermind But.. If you really believe that... there probably isn't much point in going on.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: blame game on 08/28/2012 12:54:47 MDT Print View

"to fund 70 years of pension in 10 years

So all that time the Dems had control, they weren't funding the pensions? Where has that happened before? Say it aint so. I love it when the clean up crew gets blamed for the spill."

No, it's not cleaning up a past problem, it's a funding of pensions in the future for work not even done yet.

Oh, it's 75 years, not 70, I was wrong

One article that talks about it

http://www.courierpress.com/news/2011/sep/27/no-headline---picket/

Like I said, the Rs snuck it in when the Ds were sleeping

It's what's called "a poison pill" to ruin the finances of the post office so then the Rs can later (now) say "it's broke, we have to privatize it!"

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Funny stuff on 08/28/2012 13:10:59 MDT Print View

"Ken

"What is interesting is that the far, far right have taken over the Republican party."

Nevermind But.. If you really believe that... there probably isn't much point in going on."


I know it sounds like a nutty conspiracy theory

Look at all the federal bills and you'll see how they benefit wealthy contributors. As long as their isn't a recording of a "quid pro quo" conversation, it's legal.

Like the "carried interest" provisions that calls hedge fund managers income long term capital gain taxed at 15%

Obama Care keeps the insurance companies in business. Clinton tried to pass "Medicare for all" but was defeated by insurance company ads. Obama Care was originally developed by the Heritage Foundation as a conservative solution to health care. But since then, the pendulum has gone further right so now this is "liberal".

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
the commission on 08/28/2012 13:38:42 MDT Print View

Obama and the Heritage Foundation partners; financed by the insurance companies and a Perot Trust.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Vote for Sheriff Mack? on 08/28/2012 14:52:20 MDT Print View

"
"What is interesting is that the far, far right have taken over the Republican party."

Nevermind But.. If you really believe that... there probably isn't much point in going on."

Locally the Ron Paul supporters, the John Birch society, groups like supporters of sheriff Mack and the local http://www.stevenscountyassembly.com/ etc. are tormenting the GOP leaders with candidates that support little of the Republican platform. There are no
democrats running for local office and the right wing fringe groups know they can't be elected if they declare other than GOP.

If you believe the constitutionalists and the libertarians have always been a big part
of the Republican Party, then I suppose things haven't changed. GOP candidates
that have been a part of the party for dozens of years are losing support and
elections to the far right-the Tea Party candidates.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: efficiency of large collective public enterprises on 08/28/2012 15:45:02 MDT Print View

"If anyone out there knows of a Hedge Fund or a Mutual Fund (an index fund would be nice) operating at LOWER costs please let us all know NOW!"

Check out almost any index fund. They all operate at less than 1% of assets under management, and most are below .5%. The Vanguard Index 500(VFINX) currently has an expense ratio of .17%

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: blame game on 08/28/2012 15:47:39 MDT Print View

What strikes me, is basically the blame game. My question still stands. Do any of you REALLY think that one party will perform better than the other, with the American and world economies in a desperate state, and the huge deficits already in place? Or is the American political system so broken already that nothing, short of another revolution of some kind, can fix it?

BTW, just my personal opinion (as is everything in this thread), but economies of scale would suggest that a 'properly' run federal system, be it health, education, or welfare, will be more cost effective than a multitude of private ones. But you would have to take the profit and corruption out of the systems (which is what makes the private supply of public goods so costly). That would mean a party that has no vested interest in private options. This seems to me the crux of the problem. There is no such mainstream party at the moment.

Take the feds out of it all together and you would basically have the NAEU (North American Economic Union). We've seen how well THAT can work (sarcasm for sure).

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 15:51:10 MDT Print View

"Scaling back is fine with me if we change the way we approach these conflicts."

How about the cheapest alternative of all: Staying the he!! out of conflicts in the first place. If Iraq and Afghanistan have proved anything, it's that there isn't any such thing as a cheap conflict, given the way we fight our wars.

"We have got to take the gloves off and quit trying to be the world's police." The second part of this I understand and applaud, but I'm not sure what you mean by taking the gloves off. Carpet bomb 'em into the stone age? Nuke 'em 'til they glow?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 15:58:25 MDT Print View

"When someone does a terrorist act against us, we should treat it like a police action, "

Or maybe find out what caused them to commit such an act in the first place. As we have found out in Afghanistan, police actions can become a very debilitating, low grade conflict that drags on for years at enormous cost and suffering, both where the conflict is taking place, creating a new generation of "terrorists" in the process, and here at home, as the mangled in mind and body come trickling home to pose an enormous burden on our society without having achieved anything worthwhile. Better to resolve the underlying grievance, IMO.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 16:01:27 MDT Print View

"The issues that they are bringing to the fore front makes it sound like they want us to go back to the 1950's. Oh and the ignorant starements by dumb, white piliticians over womens reproductive rights ..."

More like the 1350's, I'd say.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
carpet nuking... on 08/28/2012 16:49:41 MDT Print View

"but I'm not sure what you mean by taking the gloves off. Carpet bomb 'em into the stone age? Nuke 'em 'til they glow?"

Uhm, just short of carpet nuking. But seriously... I think you get my drift. No more need for surgical talk. Lets have clear cut rules of engagement like we are at war and want to win the dang thing and go home. We don't tinker, we don't police, so don't pester us, kind of attitude. You shoot at me, your block gets flattened. A lot of people won't agree with me here either, but I don't believe in being the worlds door mat.

Edited by BFThorp on 08/28/2012 16:53:24 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: blame game on 08/28/2012 16:54:06 MDT Print View

Lynn

"Do any of you REALLY think that one party will perform better than the other, with the American and world economies in a desperate state, and the huge deficits already in place?"

The root problem is that we have the best government money can buy

The Democrats almost unanimously voted for a bill that would require political contributors would be identified.

The Republicans voted almost unanimously that political contributions be anonymous.


The Democrats voted to re-instate something similar to Glass Stegal and for the "Buffet Rule" that requires people over $250K pay at least 30% federal tax. The Republicans voted against.


etc. etc....


The deficit could be way reduced if we just quit those programs put into place during the Bush administration. If the Republicans, especially the crazy ones, got spanked in the election maybe the moderate Republicans would be able to take back their party. Our debt is high but not unprecedented.


Things were way worse during the great depression, WWII,... It will be relatively easy for us to recover from our current problems.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Funny stuff on 08/28/2012 17:01:04 MDT Print View

"Nevermind But.. If you really believe that... there probably isn't much point in going on."


Yes I do. The platform that the Reupublican Party has adopted is not the same as it has been over the last 30 years. From being a party that had more interest in "fiscal" reponsibility etc. to moral values that I feel are being shoved down my throat. Sorry but when you have people in the Republican party that cannot even define what rape is, or say that rape and having a child is like having a child out of wedlock then I have to say the lunatics have taken over the asylum. Birth control? Just don't have sex. Porn? Eradicate it. Hey I am horny and like to do it and I love beautiful women on film...big deal. Get over your hang ups. The pressure that The Tea Party has pushed onto the old guard Republican Party is quite evident. The rhetoric that has been spewed over the last 4 years has me thinking that we have not progressed as a society here in the USA. Outlaw abortion, cut programs for those that need..ie welfare, umemployment insurance, gutting FEMA, cutting many of our government agencies that watch out for the goodness our people that do not have a voice. Healthcare....Why cannot anyone realize that a major overhaul is necessary for our society. Why is it that EU countries can have many things that ALL societies should have...we are sooooo far behind in terms of being progressive. I am not calling for a welfare state, I am calling for a country that cares....what the F is wrong with that??? Yes we are a big country but really, the rhetoric and vitriol has gotten out of hand. Yes both parties have a burden of blame...but when I see bumper stickers saying "Don't Re Nig In 2012" that saddens me greatly. Yes it is a play on words, but we all know what that means. Why is it so offensive to have a African America President? Or as some of you might say he is only half...then my response is, well his wife and children fit that description more and maybe that is the problem? Again, we as a modern society have not come a long way from the 60's. I remember seeing bathroom that DID NOT allow those of color to use them...we are not that far off from then. What about immigration? Darn latinos! Again I have seen the far right lash out at programs like allowing them in California to have drivers licenses. Clue.....they already drive....why not make it legal. Why not make them get insurance so that they can drive legal. What place is it of ours to not allow others to come here and earn a living. Just remember the next time you go to a restaurant and order a meal, those illegals are making your food, washing your dishes, and busing your table. Or hey, what about the food you eat? Who do you think worked those fields in scorching heat (talking CA Central Valley). If only you knew how much our food would cost if we paid wages to "legal" citizens....BTW who wants to work the fields for $10 an hour? Right. What about Gay rights? Taboo....Yes you know, I feel others have the right to marry. It does not affect me. I don't believe in being exclusionary the far right sure do. They want nothing more than to do that. Don't get me started on two wars that had NOTHING to do with 9/11. The amount of money that has been spent, and the death toll on innocent people in those two countries sickens me. Shame on our Govt. for the deception that they caused. We fell for it hook line and sinker. I am not some angry sign touting Lib...far from it. I have a healthy disdain for the far left. However, if I had to pick which side of the fence to sit on, it certainly would not be on the right.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: carpet nuking... on 08/28/2012 17:13:14 MDT Print View

I agree Fred, if someone bullies you, you have to strike back hard. Let them remember that when they screw with you it will hurt them. Even though it hurts yourself. Don't be a door mat.

Bush attacked Afganistan and Irag that had nothing to do with 9/11

Strangely enough, Obama is the one that got Osama Bin Laden

Funny, the similarity between the names Obama and Osama - I keep mixing them up - but that will fade now...

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Funny stuff on 08/28/2012 17:17:22 MDT Print View

"Why is it so offensive to have a African America President?"

But, the next time we have an African American president it will be almost normal.

Now we need a woman president.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: carpet nuking... on 08/28/2012 19:12:18 MDT Print View

"I agree Fred, if someone bullies you, you have to strike back hard. Let them remember that when they screw with you it will hurt them. Even though it hurts yourself. Don't be a door mat."

Oh Lordy, how I love to hear Americans talk about being bullied. ROTFL.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Funny stuff on 08/28/2012 19:13:16 MDT Print View

"Now we need a woman president"

Michelle for prez!

Steven Paris
(saparisor) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Fresh Air interview with authors of book "The Real Romney" on 08/28/2012 21:05:11 MDT Print View

A good interview:

http://www.npr.org/2012/08/28/160173451/real-romney-authors-dissect-his-latest-campaign

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Bullied on 08/29/2012 10:00:37 MDT Print View

Tom

There are people in this world that want to do us or harm. I get pretty sick of people blaming the actions of the US for all the bad apples in the world. Im in favor of more isolationism but gheez, some people just can't seem to get picture. I'm guessing you'd be in favor of going back to a Carter military or less.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Bullied on 08/29/2012 10:03:45 MDT Print View

Fred

There are people in the U.S. that want to create a "boogie man" to justify corporate welfare and distract us while they pick our pocket.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Pick pockets on 08/29/2012 10:38:38 MDT Print View

and corporate welfare. I love that term, corporate welfare.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
corporate welfare on 08/29/2012 12:53:10 MDT Print View

"I'll believe corporations are people when Texas executes one."

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Far Right. on 08/29/2012 17:25:18 MDT Print View

What exactly do you guys mean by "far right?" Do you mean facists? Neo-conservatives? Borderline anarcho-capatalist libertarians?

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
far right on 08/29/2012 17:51:20 MDT Print View

take your pick, far right and authoritarian, or even more further right and authoritarian.
http://www.politicalcompass.org/uselection2012

John Nausieda
(Meander) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: corporate welfare on 08/29/2012 17:59:23 MDT Print View

As Tom McGuane used to say about the Electric Chair down South. "Proof that God likes Fried Food" or near that.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Bullied on 08/29/2012 20:36:22 MDT Print View

"There are people in this world that want to do us or harm."

This is true and, in many cases, they have very good reason for wanting to do us harm. Al Qaeda is one very good example, but there are also many others in that part of the world. We have a long history of meddling in the Middle East and have caused a lot of suffering in the process. It was just a matter of time until a bin Laden came along and delivered a retaliatory blow, even with the knowledge that it would result in a devastating response. Until we change our policies, we will be faced with an endless war against enemies who are resilient, patient, and resourceful. Iraq and Afghanistan are just the beginning. We cannot continue down this path and remain an economically strong, free country. Carpet bombing is not the answer, nor any other military solution, as the last 10 years have demonstrated. Changing our policies will produce much better results. For everyone.


"I'm guessing you'd be in favor of going back to a Carter military or less."

I'm not much into labels, but I will tell you that I am in favor of a military designed to defend our country, not a military designed to impose our will on the world. The latter is unsustainably expensive and ultimately doomed to fail. I am betting we could have a military that would make it insanity for any nation on earth to even think of attacking us for, say, $100 billion, max. Anything beyond that is an imperialistic military, and I will not support it. History is littered with the bones of empires, and it would be a tragedy to add ours to the pile. If that is a Carter military, than I am in support of a Carter military.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
My Politics 2012 on 08/29/2012 21:28:18 MDT Print View

I've always made an effort to stay informed.

Coincidentally, I've never voted for a candidate that's actually gone on to win anything. Maybe this is a function of how "informed" I am.

I find myself listening to re-cap coverage of the RNC in the morning, wheels hissing over dark concrete on the westbound I-10.

The smartest political decision I've made in some time was to shut the radio off, slide The Evens (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TDM3MZXn4qA) into the CD deck, look at the clock, and decide there would be just enough time to surf for 30 minutes before work. I'll be 20 minutes late to the welcome back continental breakfast, but I think they'll live without me.

Surf was poor, yet as far as this morning was concerned, infinitely more pertinent than a Paul Ryan speech.

I don't know about the United States of America, but I'm leaning toward adopting a far more isolationist foreign policy.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: My Politics 2012 on 08/29/2012 21:41:20 MDT Print View

"I don't know about the United States of America, but I'm leaning toward adopting a far more isolationist foreign policy."
+1

Change begins at home.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Military spending on 08/30/2012 07:30:29 MDT Print View

"I am betting we could have a military that would make it insanity for any nation on earth to even think of attacking us for, say, $100 billion, max. Anything beyond that is an imperialistic military, and I will not support it."

On this we'll just have to agree to disagree. "More isolationist" I'm for.

$100 billion is the equivilant of issuing everyone in the US a Glock 9. I'm not so comfortable with that as a spending limit.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: My Politics 2012 on 08/30/2012 14:30:26 MDT Print View

Thanks for the link to The Evens. Nice stuff.

"but I'm leaning toward adopting a far more isolationist foreign policy."

I hope that doesn't mean you lean toward adopting isolationism overall. Most Americans, IMO, are already too ignorant of what's going on in the world, and are much to America-centric in their knowledge and thinking. We need to engage the world more, not less. We just need to change the way in which we engage.

Edited by idester on 08/30/2012 14:58:41 MDT.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: blame game on 08/30/2012 14:57:54 MDT Print View

"Do any of you REALLY think that one party will perform better than the other, with the American and world economies in a desperate state, and the huge deficits already in place? Or is the American political system so broken already that nothing, short of another revolution of some kind, can fix it?"

No to the first part. Yes to the second. I think that the biggest problem is that far too many people think they MUST stay within the (facade of a) two-party system. Really, we have a one-party system, but people just don't want to believe that. So they continue to vote for the 'lesser of two evils' thinking that's their only real choice. In doing so, of course, they're taking a very short-term view. But so it goes.

Edited by idester on 08/30/2012 14:59:21 MDT.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: Re: blame game on 08/30/2012 15:18:43 MDT Print View

"I think that the biggest problem is that far too many people think they MUST stay within the (facade of a) two-party system"

Agreed. To me, this strongly argues that the system itself needs to be changed. As long as people feel they are 'throwing away their vote' by voting for a minor party, it will carry on this way. I imagine this is why some countries have ditched the 'first-past-the-post' system for elections in favour of a more representative government, where minor parties also have a say in how things are decided, and major parties have to form coalitions with the minor parties if they want to stay in power. Not saying one system is better than others, as they all have their down sides. Just that there might be a lot better systems than the one the US currently has.

I also agree that the US effectively has a one-party system at the moment. Both the Dems and the Reps seem to be pretty right of centre, so a vote for either of them is likely to get you more of the same no matter what the outcome of the election. But education/intelligent voting has not been (in recent times) a prerequisite for voting rights, so I don't know how you can change this...especially since the powers that be have a vested interest in keeping the voters ignorant.

Isolationism is NOT the right approach IMHO. But neither is interfering in the politics of other countries. Again, education about how the world works as a whole seems preferable to a brute force approach, which is morally wrong to me, and unbelievably costly to the US at present. America is hardly the paradigm of an ideal democracy to be forcing it's political agendas on others.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Isolationism. on 08/30/2012 16:41:55 MDT Print View

I'm talking isolationism of a personal variety.
As in: shut off the radio and go surfing.

Seemed to work pretty well again this morning :)

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Military spending on 08/30/2012 16:55:48 MDT Print View

"$100 billion is the equivilant of issuing everyone in the US a Glock 9. I'm not so comfortable with that as a spending limit."

???

You're right, we'd better just agree to disagree.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: My Politics 2012 on 08/30/2012 17:08:10 MDT Print View

"IMO, are already too ignorant of what's going on in the world, and are much to America-centric in their knowledge and thinking. We need to engage the world more, not less. We just need to change the way in which we engage."

+1 We can't afford not to. Literally.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Re: My Politics 2012 on 08/30/2012 19:21:31 MDT Print View

Tom unfortunately, most of our country would not agree......sigh....

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: My Politics 2012 on 08/30/2012 19:28:36 MDT Print View

"IMO, are already too ignorant of what's going on in the world, and are much to America-centric in their knowledge and thinking. We need to engage the world more, not less. We just need to change the way in which we engage."

This is the change at home of which I speak.

No broadcast TV in this house and living behind the Redwood Curtain is isolation enough. Thank You!

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: My Politics 2012 on 08/30/2012 20:13:02 MDT Print View

"Tom unfortunately, most of our country would not agree......sigh...."

The only way people anywhere seem to learn is by what I call "hard lessons". We've had a couple, but I suspect it'll take a few more. In the long term I think a majority will finally agree, but it ain't gonna be pretty in the meantime. Look at how long it took Europeans to become Old Europe, and what they had to go thru to get there. SIGH...

Brian UL
(MAYNARD76)

Locale: New England
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: My Politics 2012 on 08/31/2012 00:35:22 MDT Print View

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B39W91O-rUg

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Third party on 08/31/2012 08:20:09 MDT Print View

@ Douglas

"No to the first part. Yes to the second. I think that the biggest problem is that far too many people think they MUST stay within the (facade of a) two-party system."

I agree with this... but... look at the bashing the Tea Party has taken. Yes, even from people in this thread. The media calling them tea baggers, right wing radicals, blah blah blah. I'm not a member but have been to a couple of functions. Three things I got out of it. Fiscal responsibility, less gov't (Fed), States Rights. Funny how I didn't hear about homosexuals, abortion, or religion and that's good with me because it's not on my agenda either. I don't guess I know what a right wing radical is but balancing our books doesn't seem like a radical idea, nor does letting the states work out more of their own problems like the founders envisioned. We continue to move more toward a Socialist structure in this country and I find it amazing that so many here think it's Okie-Dokie and anyone opposed is off their rocker. Nuts

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Third party on 08/31/2012 09:12:11 MDT Print View

Fred, maybe you should read my rant once again on page 9. I want nothing to do with your vision of this country. I say that respectively BTW as we all have opinions. Have you read what Tom K. wrote? We have shoved our ideals on other cultures/countries for years. There is a lot of built up tension and/or hostility towards our government NOT our people. By continue what you feel is the optimal solution sets our country back even further. I want no part of that. Don't get me wrong, I know we have to defend ourselves. But would you call invading Iraq and Afghanistan just? Curious. So I would possibly assume that your idea of military action should have been blowing up those two countries to ? By the way Fred, you cannot deny that some of the rhetoric coming from The Tea Party is quite silly no?

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
? on 08/31/2012 09:53:15 MDT Print View

I guess you'll have to point out the rhetoric. I'm just a flyover state dipstick.

"I want nothing to do with your vision of this country."
If you are wanting socialism, you should be happy. If you think the constituion is anitiquated and needs to be trashed, I don't get it. If you think that people aren't going to hate us, no matter how nice we are, I think your dreaming.

I agree with your opinion of the Iraq war, but hey, we're part of the UN right? Uhm, how many resolutions do we pass before we say we aren't kidding anymore. Why does the UN ask a country for proof of destructed WMDs if they aren't going to back it up? I'm in favor of the UN being somewhere else and us not be a part of it. But the UN does good stuff right?

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: ? on 08/31/2012 10:08:51 MDT Print View

What's wrong with Socialism?

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
?? on 08/31/2012 10:24:43 MDT Print View

"What's wrong with Socialism?"

It's the same reason we weren't all given the same grades in school. Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
An outsider on 08/31/2012 10:37:15 MDT Print View

As an outsider looking in, do most Americans actually believe they live in a democracy?

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: An outsider on 08/31/2012 10:41:33 MDT Print View

Mike, I would say yes. Fred look no further than Canada....it does work and yes, their version is not pure socialism but a watered down version. And yes we as a country have similar public assistance that they do.

spelt the enigmatic
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: ?? on 08/31/2012 10:45:50 MDT Print View

The US has had some measure of socialism for close to a century, nearly half the country's existence. All this talk about socialism is coming is nonsense. It is already here, and barring a complete collapse of government, whether by attack, revolution, or bathtub drowning, is here to stay.

spelt the enigmatic
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: An outsider on 08/31/2012 10:48:29 MDT Print View

Mike, I think we have an oligarchy-tinged democracy that is on the verge of becoming a true oligarchy.

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Re An outsider on 08/31/2012 10:49:04 MDT Print View

Isn't a democracy a society where the general public can take part in the decision making?
Can anyone with less that $20,000,000 even be heard in the USA?
Proportional representation, and a cap on campaign funding would be a good start.
Vote big business A, or vote big business B.

spelt the enigmatic
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Re An outsider on 08/31/2012 11:06:03 MDT Print View

Several states have provisions that allow for direct democracy via propositions on the ballot. Our proportional representation via Congress is not so bad by the numbers; it not the system itself but the hand of corporations that makes congressional "representation" such a farce.

ETA: for what it is worth, I've noticed a lot more citizen participation in the past year or two than in the previous decade. I think Bush created a lot of depression and apathy. Obama's "hope" campaign and the tea party backlash has led to a lot of constituents of every political persuasion contacting their reps more often and over more issues. On things like ACTA/SOPA this seems to have had an effect. Though the actual influence of corporations probably can't be quantified, there is some evidence that indicates the people can still make themselves heard.

Edited by spelt on 08/31/2012 11:11:40 MDT.

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Iceland on 08/31/2012 11:16:41 MDT Print View

I'm very impressed with Iceland. Unlike the US and the UK, they jailed the corrupt bankers after the recent crash, and let the banks fail. It's taken a few years, but they have now paid off their financial obligations to other countries. Their economy is now in growth.
More recently, they held an online discussion to enshrine a new constitution, where folk actually voted online, in real time.
Most folk will never have heard of this, as our masters don't want us to know there is another way of doing things.

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/31/2012 11:27:46 MDT Print View

we all have free speech, but some people have so much more than the rest, only the most free of us ever get to be heard.

When asked to place numbers on a line, Most Americans can't go beyond a thousand. 1,10,100,1000. People understand these numbers. Homes,cars.computers,educations,... nobody generally needs to grasp more than the thousand value to handle common life. For low thousands people prefer to stay in hundreds, thirty eight hundred, seventy five hundred... the hundred being something that we encounter far more often than the thousand.

A million is a dream number, and a billion is a made up amount. Most people really have no idea how much they are getting robbed of the value of their labor, and lack the ability to visualize it when given the numbers. None. Even if their hearts are in the right place, the brain isnt used enough here. Honestly, maybe 15-20% of Americans ever question anything they were told about America in their education, at school, at church, or via their favorite personality on television.

To win an election just buy air time with ads using phrases familiar and comfortable to the target audience, and if those phrases get an emotional response without having to think, all the better at gathering support.

America is the best country on earth. We have a flourishing model democracy that was designed by the greatest men who ever lived. Our people have freedom that everyone, everywhere, envies. We have so much more opportunity than every other country anywhere, and that we get attacked for it.

spelt the enigmatic
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Iceland on 08/31/2012 11:28:18 MDT Print View

Iceland has a population around 320,000. The smallest US state, Wyoming, has a population around 500,000. Not saying it is impossible to do things other ways in the US and UK, but they would have to be done different other ways than small countries like Iceland can get away with. Just for example, education, news awareness, and access to media vary wildly over the US according to location, race, class, and other factors. I would be genuinely terrified to hold a direct vote on amending the US constitution when surveys and studies consistently show the appalling lack of knowledge of Americans on their own political system and current affairs.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Iceland on 08/31/2012 11:33:30 MDT Print View

Spelt (strange calling someone that...) and Cameron, both of your posts are well thought out and reasonable. Nice

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Re Re on 08/31/2012 11:42:11 MDT Print View

@ Spelt.
You are probably correct. Decent politicians should protect us from our base instincts.
Education is the key.
BTW, i'm not anti USA. I have a lot of US relatives that i enjoy visiting.

spelt the enigmatic
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Iceland on 08/31/2012 11:44:19 MDT Print View

Thank you, Ken. I always enjoy your input on political topics. (At some point I got in the habit of only using pseudonyms online and now it feels weird to do otherwise.)

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Iceland on 08/31/2012 11:50:00 MDT Print View

Cheer, though I am quite left and others usually don't agree. I just want a better society

spelt the enigmatic
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Re Re on 08/31/2012 11:53:09 MDT Print View

Contrary to various online accusations, I am not anti-US, either. ;) As cameron says, there is a lot we got and still get right, but what we get wrong we make a real mess of. As the nursery rhyme goes, "When she was good, she was very, very good, but when she was bad she was horrid."

spelt the enigmatic
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
better society on 08/31/2012 11:59:04 MDT Print View

Same here. I expect we agree on a lot of things.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Socialism on 08/31/2012 14:06:54 MDT Print View

"It is already here"

In many places and various forms, I would certainly agree. Hmmm, I wonder if there is a correlation between... nevermind

Appreciate everyones thoughts on this thread. Hope everyone has a good ole fashion American 3 day weekend.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Third party on 08/31/2012 14:21:11 MDT Print View

"I agree with this... but... look at the bashing the Tea Party has taken."

I agree, it's almost comical. But it's a well-proven media method - look for the craziest members of any organization, put them on camera, everyone thinks they're representative of the group. Same thing happened to the Occupy Wall Street group. Same thing happens to pretty much any group that rails against the status quo, regardless of which side they're on.

"Three things I got out of it. Fiscal responsibility, less gov't (Fed), States Rights."

My understanding as well as far as a broad platform. Of course you have folks who align with Tea Partiers who also hold other views, so those views get mixed up into the mash and then, well, see above.

"nor does letting the states work out more of their own problems like the founders envisioned."

Agreed. There is certainly a role for the federal government, but that role has gotten so out of hand and bloated over the years that we don't much resemble what our founding fathers seemed to envision.

When I'm having fun in office discussions, I like to say that when it comes to solving this country's problems, those who tend to lean toward the left seem to believe in 'we, the government'. Those who tend to lean toward the right seem to believe in 'we, the people'. Hmmm, we, the people. Where have I heard that before? ;-)

Brian UL
(MAYNARD76)

Locale: New England
Re: Re: Re Re on 08/31/2012 14:27:58 MDT Print View

nm shouldn't get involved..

Edited by MAYNARD76 on 08/31/2012 16:23:21 MDT.

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Different strokes on 08/31/2012 14:37:26 MDT Print View

"When I'm having fun in office discussions, I like to say that when it comes to solving this country's problems, those who tend to lean toward the left seem to believe in 'we, the government'. Those who tend to lean toward the right seem to believe in 'we, the people'. Hmmm, we, the people. Where have I heard that before? ;-)"

Wow. That is 180' different from here in Scotland Doug.
'We' look to the people to defeat the right wing government. Also, we are in the middle of an independence struggle to free Scotland from the clutches of the neoliberal UK.

Brian UL
(MAYNARD76)

Locale: New England
Re: Different strokes on 08/31/2012 14:44:30 MDT Print View

...by the people for the people...

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Different strokes on 08/31/2012 14:55:59 MDT Print View

Mike, if you don't mind me asking ....what are your feelings about Scotland becoming their own country. I have friends on Glasgow and they're kind of approaching this idea with caution and some cynicism

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/31/2012 15:14:47 MDT Print View

By the people, for the people is a socialist ideal.

By myself, for myself, and at the expense of anyone lacking the funds to stop me is more American.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/31/2012 19:33:47 MDT Print View

"By the people, for the people is a socialist ideal. "

I'm not sure Lincoln was much of a socialist. Certainly Daniel Webster wasn't, and he espoused the same basic idea more than 30 years earlier ( government - "made for the people, made by the people, and answerable to the people").

I think that what's too often lost in this 'idea' is that it sort of forms a social contract - 'the people' have to be engaged in their government, they have to keep a watchful eye on their government, and they have to ensure that their government is acting according to their wishes and is 'answerable' to them.

"The people" haven't been doing this for a long time, which is why we have the government we do, and have had for quite some time. As long as the majority of the voting public continues to eschew this responsibility, we'll continue to have a government that the vast majority of people are unhappy with.

Too many people want to give 'the people' a pass (and generally their arguments, though they'd try to deny it, boil down to the belief that we're simply too ignorant to really think for ourselves - we can't overcome the marketers and the slick politicians and such). I'm not willing to give 'the people' a pass, because it is ONLY 'the people' who are ever going to change the embarrassment that is the U.S. Congress and what passes for our political process. To me, it's that simple.

Edited by idester on 08/31/2012 19:34:31 MDT.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 08/31/2012 21:42:05 MDT Print View

Well said, Doug. +1

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Different strokes on 09/01/2012 17:21:04 MDT Print View

"by the people for the people..." Uh, certain people? ;0)

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/01/2012 17:26:43 MDT Print View

"because it is ONLY 'the people' who are ever going to change the embarrassment that is the U.S. Congress and what passes for our political process. To me, it's that simple."

It hasn't gotten bad enough yet for that to happen, but someday people are going to collectively look down and see that their pockets have been turned inside out. Then, watch out. Let's just hope it doesn't come down to Thomas Jefferson's axiom that "The tree of liberty must occasionally be refreshed with the blood of patriots and tyrants; 'Tis its natural manure." Messy business, that...

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
My feelings on 09/02/2012 11:59:59 MDT Print View

"Mike, if you don't mind me asking ....what are your feelings about Scotland becoming their own country. I have friends on Glasgow and they're kind of approaching this idea with caution and some cynicism"

I've always wanted independence for Scotland, Ken. It is only natural for countries to be administered by their own people. And i would abolish the monarchy too.

At the moment, Scotland has it's own parliament with limited powers. I want all decisions that affect my country to be decided in Edinburgh, not London.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Socialism on 09/04/2012 13:27:42 MDT Print View

The word Socialism has many meanings

#1 - Programs like Social Security, Public Education, the military, etc. that Americans are mostly in favor of

#2 - Soviet communism where all material goods are distributed based on party loyalty - Most Americans are opposed to this

Right wingers use "Socialism" as deragatory term to imply that people that promote #1 are really #2 but it's a lie

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Socialism on 09/04/2012 13:48:41 MDT Print View

The word Socialism has many meanings

#1 - Programs like welfare, food stamps, Medicare, etc. that many Americans think are grossly mismanaged

#2 - Soviet communism where money is ostensibly divided evenly regardless of effort or contribution to society

Left wingers love to accuse conservatives of being heartless and cruel because they believe #1 and disagree with the theory behind #2, but it's a lie

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: Re: Socialism on 09/04/2012 14:27:39 MDT Print View

Seems to me many, many Americans confuse socialism with communism, but there definitely seems to be a negative connotation to the word socialism as used in common American parlance. Socialism, as a word or concept, is so broad, that it can be almost anything where a government intervenes to provide a backstop to less advantaged members of society. In it's broadest sense I would consider socialism as a way to mitigate some of the more destructive aspects of pure and unadulterated capitalism.

My favorite definition of socialists is "Socialists generally argue that capitalism concentrates power and wealth within a small segment of society that controls the means of production and derives its wealth through a system of exploitation. This creates a stratified society based on unequal social relations that fails to provide equal opportunities for every individual to maximise their potential, and does not utilise available technology and resources to their maximum potential in the interests of the public"

This, to me, is not an argument against capitalism, though some self-defined socialists think capitalism itself is 'evil', I see it more as a way of preventing greedy people who have the means of exploiting other with lesser means of creating an unstable and inhumane society where many people are hard against the wall and a few people are ridiculously well off due to their ability to amass great wealth at the expense of others labour and resources.

However, America has a history which favours capitalism, due to its origins as a country vastly rich in land and natural resources, and pretty short on labour force. This is no longer the situation in America, so maybe its time to rethink how its society is structured??? Oh wait, America is already very much socialised in many aspects of it structure. So maybe those that oppose the idea should just modernise their views and accept that "by the people, for the people" means all people, not just those with the means to influence the current political inbalance...?

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Socialism on 09/04/2012 15:04:29 MDT Print View

Doug

Do you really think that most liberals in the U.S. want a soviet-style communism where money is divided evenly regardless of effort or contribution? That's crazy! That's like saying conservatives want the constitution replaced by a particular interpretation of the bible.

And Clinton ended "Welfare as we know it" - it and food stamps are a tiny amount - I don't know if they're mismanaged. If you can give a small amount to someone trying to break out of poverty, great. If you're creating a dependent lazy person, then you're doing more harm than good.

Medicare is managed okay. There's too much fraud - they're working on this a little - we should do more. It costs 3% to administer which is good.

But that's not the main problem. They passed Medicare Part D for precriptions but never payed for it. This is like a ticking time bomb. At some point, Medicare will run out of money. Then they can say it's bankrupt and we should get rid of it. That's the purpose of Medicare Part D.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Socialism on 09/04/2012 16:13:53 MDT Print View

"Do you really think that most liberals in the U.S. want a soviet-style communism where money is divided evenly regardless of effort or contribution?"

Hi Jerry,

Nope, I don't. I also don't believe that most conservatives believe that people who promote social security and public education are communists who want money distributed based on party loyalty. That was the point of my post.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Socialism on 09/04/2012 16:42:21 MDT Print View

"My favorite definition of socialists is "Socialists generally argue that capitalism concentrates power and wealth within a small segment of society that controls the means of production and derives its wealth through a system of exploitation. This creates a stratified society based on unequal social relations that fails to provide equal opportunities for every individual to maximise their potential, and does not utilise available technology and resources to their maximum potential in the interests of the public"

To paraphrase a well-worn phrase, capitalism doesn't exploit people, people exploit people!

I say that rather tongue in cheek, of course, but it has merit. But more to the point, I think your post infers what I think is a truism - there is no one, true way. The best economic system is one which borrows bits and pieces from a variety of systems to balance, as best it can, the inherent negatives in any system, and which creates as equal a starting point for all as possible (true equality is impossible).

Obviously, as you point out, America doesn't have a true capitalist system, it has 'socialist' bits as well. But I agree that the bits need some rejiggering - it simply hasn't been working very well for far too long. It doesn't help that every politician I know of - on either side of the aisle - thinks they get elected to represent the people who voted for them, not ALL of the people in their district.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Socialism on 09/04/2012 18:12:11 MDT Print View

"it has 'socialist' bits as well"

Yes, some 47 million bits actually.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-09-04/food-stamp-use-climbed-to-record-46-7-million-in-june-u-s-says.html

R S
(rps76) - F
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/04/2012 18:47:21 MDT Print View

BO

R S
(rps76) - F
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/04/2012 18:48:27 MDT Print View

BOO

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
Record? on 09/04/2012 18:50:10 MDT Print View

What about Obama's record? Be specific please

R S
(rps76) - F
Re: Record? on 09/04/2012 19:02:58 MDT Print View

I'll start off with Hussein's (oh s**t, call me a racist because I used his middle name) promise to lower the debt. Everyone says Bush did this and Bush did that. Yes, the debt was raised under W (as it was with every other freaking President in who knows how long) but lets look at numbers: 8 years under W, the debt was raised $4.9 trillion. It has been raised $5.4 trillion in less than 4 years under Obama. And remember, Hussein ended the war in Iraq which apparently was one of the biggest reasons as to why we were getting deeper into debt.

So that's a major one. Should be get into unemployment? Illegal immigration? Illegal immigrants going to college for free while citizens are working part time and putting themselves into terrible amounts of debt with student loans? Should I keep going on?

Oh I would, but d***, I expect to be sitting at the dinner table at 6:30 just like our President. You know, cause running a country is not a full time job.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Record? on 09/04/2012 19:06:10 MDT Print View

I don't know if you are racist or not. I do wonder why you are using the name Hussein.

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
interesting on 09/04/2012 19:08:57 MDT Print View

If you believe that a pair of people should have the same legal right to form a legal contract that provides them with certain legal rights, protections and tax advantages as many other pairs of people do now and have been able to form that makes you divisive? or a believer in the ideas of our founding fathers and a believer in defending our constitutional rights?

Free birth control? Or any birth control.

unfettered abortion? or no abortion under any circumstance.

Why shouldn't Romney's tax returns be released? Why? What's that again? Huh?

Racial division: Don't re-nig in 2012. Who's handing out those bumber stickers?

Divisive? I believe in turning the other cheek......metaphorically. You might not want to test my conviction.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: interesting on 09/04/2012 19:24:56 MDT Print View

Nm

Edited by Kat_P on 09/04/2012 19:27:46 MDT.

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
Deficit on 09/04/2012 19:40:26 MDT Print View

Here's a little something lifted from Politifact regarding the deficit accumulated during the Obama administration.


"On Jan. 7, 2009, two weeks before Obama took office, the
Congressional Budget Office reported that the deficit for fiscal year
2009 was projected to be $1.2 trillion. The 10-year projection was
estimated to be about $3.1 trillion. So Obama's number was very close on
the 2009 deficit -- he said $1.3 trillion -- but substantially
different from the 10-year projection -- he said $8 trillion."


"There are two reasons why he differs from the CBO. On the difference
between the $1.2 trillion and the $1.3 trillion, the Obama
administration credited a small portion of spending on its watch to
policies of the previous administration. The reason for this is that the
federal government runs on a fiscal year that starts Oct. 1, so Bush
and Obama technically split responsibility for 2009 spending."


"The large difference on the 10-year projection has to do with Bush
administration tax cuts. The CBO creates its estimates based on current
law, which means the CBO assumes that the Bush tax cuts will end in 2010
and everyone will start paying higher taxes in 2011 and going forward.
The Obama administration, on the other hand, assumed in its baseline
that those tax cuts would be renewed."


"{Economists we spoke with -- Josh Gordon, policy director for the
Concord Coalition, and Brian Riedl, lead budget analyst of the
conservative Heritage Foundation -- both said they believe the White
House approach is more realistic because it assumes current policy will
continue."


"So the CBO's estimate is $5 trillion lower than the White House
numbers, though economists don't quibble with the White House
methodology. It does highlight, however, that when it comes to budget
projections, people can have differences of opinion about what to
include. In any budget projection there is room for interpretation, but
it seems reasonable to assume for a baseline that the Bush tax cuts will
continue. Obama's numbers are fairly solid, so we rate his statement
Mostly True."

So most or maybe more than most of the deficit accumulated during the last 4 years was built-in before Obama ever took office. And Republicans complain about not passing a budget. Gee what's up with that? Why would you want to pass a budget when you can hang that deficit around Obama's neck?

R S
(rps76) - F
Re: Re: Re: Record? on 09/04/2012 20:12:36 MDT Print View

"I don't know if you are racist or not. I do wonder why you are using the name Hussein."

You obviously haven't heard the claim: You're a racist if you call the President by 1) his whole name or 2) by his middle name.

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/04/2012 20:42:01 MDT Print View

I can't name two non-racist people who address the President as Hussein.

R S
(rps76) - F
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/04/2012 22:12:43 MDT Print View

"I can't name two non-racist people who address the President as Hussein.".

To assure you that I'm not a racists, I happen to be an Army Infantry vet who happened to serve with brothers of all races. Including a brother with the last name of Hussein. Yes, jokes were made about trying to kill his uncle.

So, lets move away from the racist talk buddy.

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/04/2012 22:24:37 MDT Print View

I already counted you sir, giving you the benefit of the doubt. Couldn't think if another.

Not many people except racists use your phrasing.

R S
(rps76) - F
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/04/2012 22:34:41 MDT Print View

Now, back to the regularly schedule program:

nobama

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/04/2012 23:58:21 MDT Print View

But you're blaming the wrong person

The debt was mostly run up by Republicans

The debt Obama has run up is almost entirely from programs started by Republicans that Obama has tried to stop but the Republicans in congress prevent him

There have certainly been some Democrats along the way that contributed. It's really the right wingers that are in control of the Rs and are partially in control of Ds.

Dirk Rabdau
(dirk9827) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/05/2012 00:00:23 MDT Print View

R S -

*SIGH*

I can surmise from your posts that you are more interested in baiting people than engaging in a frank and honest discussion as to the merits of the respective candidates for office.

I challenge you to backup your assertion in regards to government spending under the Obama administration. I believe you will be hard pressed to provide any substantive data supporting the claim that Obama spends at a greater rate than any other president in recent history (last 30 years).

I can provide data that shows the opposite is true. You can pin many things upon Obama - but that just doesn't stand up to scrutiny.

Dirk

Edited by dirk9827 on 09/05/2012 00:01:02 MDT.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Spending? on 09/05/2012 08:27:31 MDT Print View

Maybe you guys forgot the stimulus handouts. I remember it being reported on the Big 3, so it must be true.

Jerry  Medicare is OK? Part D is the problem? Maybe I'm missing something. Reimbursements aren't exactly paying the bills.

Cola  There was a "liberal" :) that worked in the office several years ago that would always swing by with a topic of the week or month and start asking me how a heartless conservative felt about it (referencing me). By the way, he didn't "give" to charitable organizations because he felt it would be better for gov't to tax, and use the money where it was "needed". I digress. 9 times out of 10, I would say it's not the Feds business, it's a state issue. I told him he needed to read a little history and come back. He was fired before I could get him a pocket constitution and perform a conversion/exorcism. States rights, or it's return, would solve so many of the problems that the left has created. Just my $0.02

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Right winged on 09/05/2012 08:48:49 MDT Print View

Jerry 

"It's really the right wingers that are in control of the Rs and are partially in control of Ds."

I keep hearing this and have to scratch my head. If the far right wingers, ultra conservatives, are in charge... Why did they nominate a moderate for the highest office? Doesn't add up.

Edited by BFThorp on 09/05/2012 08:49:52 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Spending? on 09/05/2012 09:18:59 MDT Print View

Stimulous handouts - one time expense, relatively small compared to other budget breakers.

Don't make me break out that chart with the numbers on it that Michael Lang doesn't like : )

Medicare without part D prescription coverage had a fairly balanced budget. Then the Rs with D support passed part D and this is what really put Medicare under water. There's a provision that Medicare has to pay retail price for prescriptions which costs a lot. Look up the numbers.

I have two pocket Constitutions - one from the Heritage Foundation and one from the ACLU.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Right winged on 09/05/2012 09:32:52 MDT Print View

The "right wingers" that have bought our government are people like the Koch brothers who own oil companies, Sheldon Addleson who owns Casinos around the world, the Walton family that owns Wallmart,... And large corporations that are "people" now (actually it's the CEOs that are the people and the problem).

They are multi-billionaires. Make large political contributions. In return for making laws that favor them.

Mitt Romney is a minor player in this group. He has always been super-rich so he sympathizes with them and profits from the same laws.

They don't care about religion, abortion, gun rights, or racism. They just want to make more wealth. It makes no sense because they have way more than they'll ever need, it's just a game and we're the pawns.

There are some super-wealthy like Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Ted Turner,... that don't attempt to buy off the government and want to give their wealth away rather than create permanent dynasties. It's not being super wealthy that's the problem, it's buying our government.

And you Fred, are being manipulated. You think they're looking after your interests. If you pay more than 15% of your income in Federal tax (SS, Medicare, income,...) then you're being screwed.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Right winged on 09/05/2012 09:48:24 MDT Print View

"The "right wingers" that have bought our government ... They are multi-billionaires. Make large political contributions. In return for making laws that favor them."

Because we all know there are no rich left wingers who buy our government to get laws that favor them. None. Only right wingers. I read it on the interwebs.

"And you Fred, are being manipulated."

Oh Jerry, you crack me up. You're being manipulated by the left as much as anyone else is being manipulated by the right. It's all part of the 'voting against their interests' claptrap that some left leaners like to trot out. I guess those left leaners can't see what an arrogant statement that is, and a rather narcissistic one at that. It doesn't seem to occur to them that some people simply have a different set of values than they do, and feel that some things are more important than others, which are not necessarily the same things some left leaners feel are important.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: interesting on 09/05/2012 09:49:45 MDT Print View

RS, just go away. I find some of your posts in bad taste.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Right winged on 09/05/2012 10:16:41 MDT Print View

Doug, Doug, Doug,...

"Because we all know there are no rich left wingers who buy our government to get laws that favor them"

Look at the percent of total wealth - it is flowing to wealthier people.

Look at tax rates - Romney and all of those other super-wealthy pay 15%. You and I pay 15% if we get minimum wage or more like %40 if we make a decent income.

Look at welfare or medicaid - left wing programs - the funding of these has decreased in recent years. Well, Medicaid funding has gone up but not as fast as medical costs in general.

Look at the percentage of workers in labor unions. Used to be 35%. Now it's maybe 15%? And there is a huge right wing effort to reduce this.

Just based on results, I'de say the Right wing puppet masters are more successful than left wing.

Like Warren Buffet said, there's a class war going on and "My class" (Buffet's) has won.


"I guess those left leaners can't see what an arrogant statement that is, and a rather narcissistic one at that. It doesn't seem to occur to them that some people simply have a different set of values than they do, and feel that some things are more important than others, which are not necessarily the same things some left leaners feel are important."

I have no problem with conservative values. Families. I've always worked and saved some. If someone wants a gun, fine. If someone wants to be super-religious with some particular religion, fine, just don't try to convert me.

It's not conservative vs liberal, it's that a few people have bought our government and we're letting them do it.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Right winged on 09/05/2012 10:26:23 MDT Print View

Jerry, Jerry, Jerry, Jerry (do I win? ;-)

"It's not conservative vs liberal, it's that a few people have bought our government and we're letting them do it."

And here we agree, but that's not what many of your posts generally infer. You generally, from your posts, want to blame just about everything on the 'right,' with an occasional, throw away "with the help of some D's". So where we disagree is that I think they're ALL in it together, you just want to lay the blame (or the lion's share of it) on the right, and believe the false choice of having to vote Dem (better of two evils argument).

So as long as we take sides (instead of not playing into their divisive tactics) we'll all continue to lose. So I believe that you've been as manipulated as those on the right, because you're all playing the blame game against each other instead of meeting in the middle and working together.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Re: interesting on 09/05/2012 10:32:45 MDT Print View

"There are some super-wealthy like Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Ted Turner,... that don't attempt to buy off the government and want to give their wealth away rather than create permanent dynasties. It's not being super wealthy that's the problem, it's buying our government."

These individual want to give away the wealth They have accumulated via the foundations they set up. They want to direct those funds. I don't see them donating all the wealth to the federal government and letting them decide where to distribute the wealth.

Where I live many of the wealthy families contribute millions of dollars to education, hospitals, arts, poverty, etc. How much of this money do you think these organizations would receive if the federal government was the funnel. Today the system of giving away wealth works very well. Individuals have the right to distribute based on their personal interest which most often aligns with the country's need (ie education, health care etc). If the federal government takes over then it will get distributed based on party favors and votes.

Why is it bad for a wealthy person to decide where he would like to direct his money? If you don't think he has the right fine, but why do you think our corrupt political system (both parties) has the right to do that?

Brad

Edited by wufpackfn on 09/05/2012 10:34:26 MDT.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: interesting on 09/05/2012 10:36:28 MDT Print View

Brad, +1 and then some.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/05/2012 10:43:06 MDT Print View

"Why is it bad for a wealthy person to decide where to direct his money?" Volunteerism just isn't going to work. Imagine trying to set a budget for schools based on whether or not the local wealthy people will decide to pony up that year--or not--or moved away--or lost their money in a hedge fund; etc. You don't get to "volunteer" whether to pay taxes. By the way, remember that the next time you drive your car on a road, it didn't get there because some rich people volunteered to build it; same thing when the fire truck shows up to douse your burning house or the ambulance arrives to save your life.

David Lutz
(davidlutz)

Locale: Bay Area
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/05/2012 10:52:51 MDT Print View

I was always taught to keep it simple, so here it goes:

Federal spending in '08 and '09 was around 3 trillion dollars. It's been around 3.6 trillion dollars since then. A 20% increase over a very large number.

The Bush administration increased federal debt by +4 trillion dollars over an eight year time span. Wildly irresponsible. The Obama administration has added +5 trillion in less the four years. Worse, obviously.

The forecast is for +1 trillion dollar annual deficits for the next ten years. At the end of a second Obama term, should he win, the debt would be north of 21 trillion dollars. Over $63,000 PER PERSON.

Now, what we usually see here are "See, what happened was....." responses designed to obfuscate these numbers. Complicated charts that compare fictional numbers to hypothetical baselines and long "fact-checker" explanations about blame.

There are only two possible ways out of this mess and raising taxes is not one of them. You could jail the rich and confiscate their money and still not come close to substantially reducing the debt.

We can reduce the value of the money through inflation which is devastating to everyone except the wealthy. This seems to be the plan. Or grow the economy, and fast.

I vote for growth, or at least the possibility of growth.

Edited by davidlutz on 09/05/2012 10:55:19 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Right winged on 09/05/2012 11:03:52 MDT Print View

Doug, Doug (okay, you can win : )

"So where we disagree is that I think they're ALL in it together, you just want to lay the blame (or the lion's share of it) on the right, and believe the false choice of having to vote Dem (better of two evils argument)."

There is a difference between Ds and Rs

Rs vote unanimously to maintain unlimited, anonymous political contributions. Ds voted to at least make the contributions public.

Rs vote unanimously to uphold every tax loophole. They call it "taxes on the job creators". The Ds vote almost unanimously to at least end the Bush Tax cuts. And vote for the "Buffet Rule" that would require people over $250K a year to pay at least 30% tax.

You're right that they're all in it together. Without political donations they won't get elected so they have to cater to contributors. Ds are heavily influenced by those same super-wealthy.

Still - if we call our representatives and tell them we want fair taxes, very limited political contributions, and some government spending on programs that help average people - and vote for people that advocate those - maybe this will turn around. The same thing happened in the 1930s.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/05/2012 11:04:07 MDT Print View

Jeffery,

Did I say do away with taxes and rely solely on contributions? No. I was referring to the comment Jerry made about how some wealthy people like Gates, etc want to give away their wealth. Obviously we need taxes to run the country and we need to make adjustments to the current system. However it is not the federal governments role to continue taking more and more from the wealthy and deciding how to spend the money.

My oldest son started college a few weeks ago. I sure saw a lot of nice college buildings and facilities with the names of wealthy people on them. Just imagine how that process would have worked if the money would have to be filtered through the federal government. When a donor gives directly to the recipient it is dollar for dollar. Wonder what the yield would be if the federal government was in the middle.

Your fire truck example is not completely accurate. Volunteer fire departments play an important role in fire protection in the US. Often times they rely on contributions from the community (which includes wealthy people) to purchase new fire equipment. At least that is the way it happens in my community.

Maybe it's just where you live and things are just different. Where I live it's clearly evident that the wealthy people in my community give significantly to excellent local causes.


Brad

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: interesting on 09/05/2012 11:12:59 MDT Print View

"Why is it bad for a wealthy person to decide where he would like to direct his money?"

Nothing wrong with this. We should all be free to decide where to spend our money.

But, to depend on the charity of super-wealthy people doesn't seem right. Sort of Dickensian.

The funding isn't stable.

A wealthy person could have crazy ideas like to fund racist organizations or to buy off the government.

I think it's better to have taxes paid fairly by every one pay for limited government services. We will have to decide how much and what to spend it on.
Politicians administer this. If you don't like the way it's spent, vote in different ones. This isn't perfect, but it's better than other systems.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: interesting on 09/05/2012 11:32:12 MDT Print View

"A wealthy person could have crazy ideas like to fund racist organizations or to buy off the government."

And we all know that politicians don't have any crazy ideas and they are great stewards of our tax dollars.

I always hate the "fair" word. How do you define it? Why is what's fair today, not fair tomorrow or in 2 years, 10 years, etc. What one deems fair might not be seen as fair to another. So who's right then? However the "fair" word makes some feel like they are being treated unfair, so they jump on the bandwagon. Why don't we just say that taxpayers should only pay X in taxes and it will never change. Then adjust spending accordingly. This would be "fair" because everyone would know the number and could count on it to not change. However the "fair" group will not give you a number because then they couldn't increase the "fair" number next year when they deem it no longer a "fair" number. See the agenda is not about determining a "fair" number, but about making you think you are getting treated unfairly so you will support them. You can take the same logic and use it against the Rep. on another issue.

Brad

Erik Basil
(EBasil) - M

Locale: Atzlan
Keep it going on 09/05/2012 12:19:16 MDT Print View

Fellas, I realize there's a lot to talk about but, when you reach consensus will you please post the answer, so I know how to vote?

Just let me know.


When you have consensus.

Edited by EBasil on 09/05/2012 12:19:55 MDT.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
man have I been - ipulated on 09/05/2012 12:29:51 MDT Print View

Jerry 

"And you Fred, are being manipulated. You think they're looking after your interests. If you pay more than 15% of your income in Federal tax (SS, Medicare, income,...) then you're being screwed."

I enjoyed the first part of this comment. Second - I don't want anyone looking out for me thanks...THAT'S THE PROBLEM Jerry. I want them both to leave me alone and get the heII out of the way. I just spent an hour and a half during lunch trying to legally send a package to South Dakota and will have to try another option tomorrow. Thanks Federal gov't for all your dipstik unintended consequences while trying to help us dummies out. Im suprised we can still run with scissors.

It you want to eliminate the influence, take away the reward.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Voting - consensus ??? on 09/05/2012 12:41:42 MDT Print View

@ Erik

The more I see, the more I think it doesn't matter. We are hosed either way.

Edited by BFThorp on 09/05/2012 12:42:23 MDT.

David Lutz
(davidlutz)

Locale: Bay Area
keep it going..... on 09/05/2012 12:47:07 MDT Print View

Erik - I just returned from WalMart - good to go for fishing!



Wait..........umm, wrong thread.....

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/05/2012 13:45:07 MDT Print View

Brad, it seems to me that you're arguing from a very abstract level. There will never be an absolute consensus on what's a "fair" tax, for example, in general. But there are, today, actual tax rates in existence that many find to be unfairly tilted in favor of the very wealthy, based at least in part on historical tax rates in this country and by comparison with other countries. There's also the fact that wealth in the U.S. has been accumulating with the famous 1 percent over the last several decades, while the tax rates for this same group has fallen to historic lows. Many in my camp find it wrong that the very wealthy have had such a bonanza in terms of tax rates for so long--decades--and yet scream bloody murder when anyone tries to restore balance. This is what Democrats mean by "fairness": balance, based on historic rates and on the good deal that the wealthy have had for so long. But there is no magic formula that will create absolute fairness or justice in every instance. You have to wait for the next world to get that; here we have politics and the Law. And good luck doing away with either, because anarchy ain't fun. In those conditions the wealthy will be "volunteering" their money in ways that they really don't want to! By the way, this is part of what Obama meant by no one building a business on their own: you do need a functioning legal and political system as well as a civil society that believes in the first two, as a bare minimum, and other things as well to be able to even begin a business.
And there goes my lunch break!

Terry G
(delvxe) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Jerry Adams 2016 (after Obama's second term)! on 09/05/2012 14:53:56 MDT Print View

I would be more comfortable having the people I vote into office to help set social policy (right to vote, fair housing laws, reproductive freedom), provide basic services (roads, education, etc), and help provide for the most needy among us than rely on the charitable donations of corporations. There are some magnanimous corporations and wealth individuals, but they are the exception, not the rule. Ultimately corporations and wealthy individuals are largely motivated by self-preservation and not the social good. Job creators frequently become job exporters once they are able. Corporations are answerable to themselves and shareholders first then to their communities. I have no problem with that, but I see that is incompatible with the social good.

And regarding everyone having "skin in the game," i would suggest that a family earning 18,000 a year already may not have any skin left to offer.

Edited by delvxe on 09/05/2012 14:55:52 MDT.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
It takes a village on 09/05/2012 14:57:21 MDT Print View

Jerry

"By the way, this is part of what Obama meant by no one building a business on their own: you do need a functioning legal and political system ... and other things as well to be able to even begin a business."

100% horse apples

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/05/2012 15:15:54 MDT Print View

With out these things, businesses must
1) maintain an army to secure trade routes
2) negotiate the terms where any route crosses another
3) maintain their trade routes so they are useable.

With a government roads can cross without negotiation.

In the mythical fantasy world where private everything is better, getting goods to market becomes a painful exercise in diplomacy.

People can not afford to go it alone.

Even the wealthiest of corporate people don't want to go it alone. The benefits are nil, the risks are absurd, and the rewards are going to be less than the investment in a functional government that provides common infrastructure.

Companies are investing heavily in the government they want. They are not fighting to reduce the government, they are shaping it to be ideal for them. What's ideal for maximum profit and unrestricted greed is not the same as what's best for communities.

Edited by redmonk on 09/05/2012 15:27:47 MDT.

Dave T
(DaveT) - F
you didn't build that. on 09/05/2012 15:27:59 MDT Print View

I'm all for cogent arguments and debate, but I really can't believe the whole furor (manufactured, stupidity-based, and otherwise) around the "you didn't build that" quotation (not the quote without context, the whole paragraph). People and businesses work to make things happen within the large backdrop of police, fire, roads, national defense, social programs, FIDC-insured banks, and a million other things. Yes, you built your business or whatever, and the framework that allowed it to happen was provided and maintained in (large) part by local, state, and Federal governments. Please get over it.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Fantasy land indeed on 09/05/2012 15:30:48 MDT Print View

"In the mythical fantasy world where private everything is better, getting goods to market becomes a painful exercise in diplomacy."

Really? I'd be curious to know what you do for a living. On a micro level, I see a lot of fails or businesses that barely get by, because of the restrictions and expenses CREATED by government. There is a place, there is a size. We passed it a long time ago.

Edited by BFThorp on 09/05/2012 15:35:20 MDT.

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/05/2012 15:36:51 MDT Print View

Why would conditions favorable to small business matter to big business ? Big business is writing the laws that benefit them. The more people who fail, the larger the pool of exploitable labor.


I'm a bard.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Bard on 09/05/2012 15:56:46 MDT Print View

That's too funny.

Rick Adams
(rickadams100) - M
business on 09/05/2012 16:13:00 MDT Print View

I own a business that employees 25 people in california. I do business with and speak to many small business owners. Every time i here a pol suggest that i don't pay my fair share it makes me want to scream. taking all of the different taxes i pay (income,property,payroll,biz lic,corp fees,fuel taxes,etc,etc) combined it is between 50 and 75% of my income. I am not college educated, come from poverty (by todays standards)and borrowed cash from my credit card 20 years ago to get going.

It doesn't take a government program to make it. It takes a willingness to RISK, work hard and hope for some luck. Our current president has no idea of what it really takes in the private sector. He is very smart, and very unwise. His actions have caused our economy to continue to flounder. We need to get people back to work and paying taxes to get the country well. Most business people see him for what he is, unfriendly to business.

If the tax increases in his health care law actually happen (i already pay med ins for my people) it will cost me thousands, income tax increases will cost me more thousands. Those new expenses will come from capital to grow, or wage increases, or reduction people working for me. Government is the problem.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Jerry Adams 2016 (after Obama's second term)! on 09/05/2012 16:23:58 MDT Print View

Hah hah hah...

Anyone that would run for office must be a damaged person

You do several events a day where you "glad hand" people and kiss babies

Or phone people for hours asking for money

Anyone willing to do this must have an ego that has to be constantly reinforced

If they didn't have to spend so much time begging for money, maybe they could spend more time governing - we'de have better people in office

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: business on 09/05/2012 16:31:02 MDT Print View

Rick - you don't quite understand

You pay fair taxes - you're a small businessman

The problem is the super-wealthy don't pay fair taxes

And then the Rs say they want to further reduce taxes on small businesses "the job creators". But what they really mean is reduce taxes on super-wealthy.

Oh, and they want to "reduce regulations to unleash small businesses" but really they mean big businesses like the biggest banks and oil companies.

Don't be propogandized by their talk - look at the actual tax rates and other hard data.

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Taxes and the Rich on 09/05/2012 16:39:37 MDT Print View

Rick:

You should have learned from Romney and you would be paying 15% or less; you can really only pull that off, though, if you were already rich. It really does seem to be a messed up system when earned income (i.e. money you actively work for) is taxed at a much higher rate than unearned income (money you make because you have loads of investment money). If we are rewarding anyone with lower taxes, shouldn't it be for income we earn instead of income we get because of the fact that we are rich and don't have to work? I haven't learned either, Rick. I pay a high rate because almost all of my income is earned income.

Rick Adams
(rickadams100) - M
Jobs on 09/05/2012 16:56:50 MDT Print View

I understand intimately

I read the tax rates and plan carefully. I also read actual legislation as it interests me. There are no good guys in this race, i just believe one is less bad. I am certain, because i have watched and listened to our president, that he doesn't understand how to grow the economy. and i believe that is what is needed most of all, more people working and a broader tax base. He could do it, but he hasn't and he won't.

Both parties cater to the wealthy (i'm not), and big business. Obama attacks the small and medium business's as well. Romney will protect his buddies, the collateral benefit to that would be a more business friendly environment leading to business optimism, investment and job growth in the real economy. If Obama was just talking about the super wealthy nobody would have a beef with it.

It's not wise to invest more (increase risk) in a time of anemic growth, high unemployment, the drumbeat of higher taxes on the few, and excessive spending that will be paid for at some point by higher taxes on the few.

I'd vote for the first person to offer to go to washington and undo things instead of getting them done. Every law negatively effects someones liberty.

My point is we need private sector jobs. We know we won't get it with Obama.
Hope and Change, Romney 2012

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/05/2012 17:01:14 MDT Print View

"real economy" is an interesting way of saying Asia.

Rick Adams
(rickadams100) - M
taxes on 09/05/2012 17:12:21 MDT Print View

Ben, I don't agee at all with the current tax system. I would change to a system where we all paid a low rate, the budget had to be balanced, and no deductions for anybody. But that's a different discussion. Niether of these guys will change it much.

However, if more people were working more taxes would be paid even with the existing tax code. If we don't get a lot more jobs things will remain stagnant.

I have some unearned income. I paid regular income taxes on the money i invested and the income I get from that already taxed money gets a favorable rate. It's the same for anybody with rentals or a mutual fund or whatever.

If this is changed the stock market will drop ( i don't really care cause its a racket anyway) and income producing real estate will drop in value overnight and rental prices will increase alot.

Mr Obama is ok with these outcomes because to him it is fair, and it might be to many. But the unintended consequences of that kind of move will end up hurting the people he alledgedly wants to protect.

We very simply need more jobs.

And no i'm not a republican.

Rick Adams
(rickadams100) - M
Asia on 09/05/2012 17:25:38 MDT Print View

Real economy doesn't mean asia to me.

As long as the average american measures success by how much cheap junk they can by asia will benefit disproportionally. Everybody has there reasons but many people don't buy american, as a result of that dollars go offshore. If we had more national pride more things would be made here providing better wages and less enviromental impacts. We'd actually be supporting our nieghbors and they would support us.

One of the cool things about backpacking is all the cottage business's that make good things here for me to buy.

Again we need jobs.......here

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: taxes on 09/05/2012 17:39:15 MDT Print View

Where have all the private jobs gone to?

I think some of them have gone overseas as part of the ill conceaved trade deals. Clinton was responsible for many. Rs pushed them and he signed them. More trade deals during Bush. Obama is promoting trade deals.

I agree, neither Rs or Ds are doing much to fix this. Ds pushed a deal for government to buy American which would help but the Rs blocked it. Some of the stimulous was to develop technology like batteries and solar cells - some of that may create jobs.

Another loss of jobs is from automation by ever smarter computers.

It would help if we trained people for higher skilled jobs designing and maintaining these automatic systems, but you have to borrow $50K to get the education. We should go back to how it used to be where I got a top rate education and had to borrow only $3K which is $6K in today's dollars.

At least Obama pushed a deal where people's student loan interest would remain at a low level rather than large increases that would make large banks a lot of money.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: taxes on 09/05/2012 18:29:41 MDT Print View

Rick Adams,

Agree 100% with your post. I'm also a business owner who with two business partners built a business from nothing to 65+ employees 10 years later. Don't waste your time trying to explain what it is like trying to run your own business and the challenges because you have a bunch of experts who will set you straight. Mind you they have no experience running a business, but they are experts. Just ask them. Maybe they stayed at a Holiday Inn Express last night.

Brad

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: taxes on 09/05/2012 19:02:17 MDT Print View

Ouch Brad!

I've owned a duplex and a house I rented out - a teeny tiny business

I've worked most of my career for small start-up companies. I'm somewhat familiar with having enough capital to pay salaries and such.

Never been government employee, union member, welfare recipient, had a pension,...

I just think that the Rs play lip service to small business owners but actually are no better than the Ds

At least under the Ds, the middle income people do a little better so the economy does better so small businesses do better

And the Ds seem more likely to fix some of these large problems facing us

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Re: taxes on 09/05/2012 19:27:00 MDT Print View

Jerry,

The dig is not at you. You and I agree on some things, but disagree on others. Your responses are always thought out and delivered with respect. We just disagree sometimes. Sometimes you think I'm pro Rep and make comments like "Rs play lip service...." Understand I don't like what either party has become and both cater to the powers that contribute money and get the votes. However I'm more for less government involvement, conservative spending and taxes as low as feasible. This aligns with some of the Rs rhetoric, but not their real intentions. Most of the Ds platform is contrary, but not all.

Brad

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: taxes on 09/05/2012 19:46:52 MDT Print View

"At least under the Ds, the middle income people do a little better so the economy does better so small businesses do better"

I guess this depends on who you're reading and who you prefer to believe, since all sides claim their numbers are correct - but everybody's numbers always seem to add up to something different.

I did find the following interesting, from a Wall Street Journal article (yes, I can hear the left leaners now - well, it's the Wall Street Journal, you can't trust it!):

"Every major marginal rate income tax cut of the last 50 years—1964, 1981, 1986 and 2003—was followed by an unexpectedly large increase in tax revenues, a surge in taxes paid by the rich, and a more progressive tax code—i.e., the share of taxes paid by the richest 1% rose.

For example, from 1980 to 2007, three tax rate cuts brought the highest marginal tax rate to 35% from 70%. Congressional Budget Office data show that when the tax rate was 70%, the richest 1% paid 18% of all federal income taxes. With the rate down to 35% in 2008, the share of taxes paid by the rich doubled to 40%."

...

"So on four separate occasions what TPC says is "mathematically impossible"—cutting tax rates and making the tax system more progressive—actually happened. Hats off to the scholars at TPC: Their study manages to claim that what happens in real life can't happen in theory."

...

"And here's the kicker: Simpson-Bowles assumed that the top rate could be cut to 28%, loopholes could be closed, revenues as a share of GDP would rise to 20% and the deficit could be cut by close to $1.5 trillion. The difference is that the Romney plan caps tax revenues at about 18% of GDP so that taxes don't have to rise on the middle class. If Mr. Romney's numbers don't add up, then neither do those in the bipartisan Simpson-Bowles plan that the media treat as the Holy Grail of deficit reduction."

...

"What the Obama campaign and its acolytes at the Tax Policy Center are really saying is that tax reform that reduces rates and makes all income groups better off is impossible. This is a far cry from what Democrats used to believe, going back to Jack Kennedy in 1964 and in the 1980s when prominent Democrats Bill Bradley, Dick Gephardt and Don Rostenkowski helped to write the 1986 tax reform."

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390443792604577574910276629448.html

R S
(rps76) - F
Re: Re: Re: interesting on 09/05/2012 19:47:03 MDT Print View

"RS, just go away. I find some of your posts in bad taste." - Ken Helwig

Unfortunately Ken, there's this thing called the first amendment. I'm assuming you're on the left which...explains everything in regards to your comment.

Record:

thumbs up

Edited by rps76 on 09/05/2012 19:48:28 MDT.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/05/2012 20:13:05 MDT Print View

Brad: you're a business owner and I know how costly and burdensome and ridiculous a lot of federal and state requirements can be. From your picture you seem to be a young guy. I'm a bit older. Of course you wouldn't discriminate against blacks or gays or Hispanics or women or Asians. Sad to say, this was common practice a mere twenty years ago, and ubiquitous before that. In many places it still is. If the admittedly costly and aggravating and time consuming and constricting regulations requiring equal access and equal pay to all Americans had never been put into place, then the kind of open environment that you and your workers take for granted would never have come into existence. You use ethical principals in hiring; well, it took government to insure that your competitors in this country can't use poverty wage labor to undercut you. _This applies to all "get government off my back" diatribes: the open market is not the kindly alternative to government regulation. The history of the unregulated market is not pretty for workers. Brad, if you have a weekend--as an an owner, maybe you don't!--thank unions, thank law, thank the government. There was no overtime a hundred years ago; everyone worked seven days a week unless they were of the owner class.

As for getting rid of ridiculous and obsolete and costly regulations that only enrich the pockets of government regulators but no longer serve a general good, right on!

Jeremy B.
(requiem) - F - M

Locale: Northern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: taxes on 09/05/2012 21:33:48 MDT Print View

Doug:
The WSJ article seems a bit disingenuous; the scenario of lowered rates and a more progressive tax system will easily occur when the distribution of income becomes more unequal. I.e. given a sufficiently large slice of the income pie, even a regressive tax system can look progressive.

R S:
I see your screenshot and I raise you a series of charts with more than two timepoints:
http://www.crgraphs.com/

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/05/2012 22:42:53 MDT Print View

Jeffrey,

I'm 46 so not sure if that is young or old. My body tells me it is old. LOL.

Just curious how you know how costly and burdensome the regulations are? Are you a business owner or have you been one in the past?

I certainly wouldn't discriminate and if you profiled my employees you would see this is true. It all comes down to do you do the job or not. I make no special exception and gladly pay. My mentor taught me to determine the profit margin I need and pay the rest to the employees in salary and benefits. My mentor is a multi million and his advice has served me well. Yeah one of those bad guys many talk about.

I don't buy your argue about equal pay, discrimination, etc. Over the past 10 years I have probably been in 500 US companies with revenue greater than 100 million. This includes many of the Fortune 100 companies. I see no evidence of companies paying minorities, women, etc less than co workers. I have personally interviewed several for position in my company and I can tell you that companies are not treating them differently. I will agree that in the past it was an issue, but not any more. Prior to starting my own business I worked for others and pay was equal and based on performance.

What purpose do unions play today? With all the government agency we have today and the regulation I don't see the value in unions today.

My competitors using poverty wages? What are you talking about? If I was farmer maybe, but in todays environment we are more concerned about hiring reliable people who can do the job.

History of unregulated markets is not pretty for workers? What are you talking about? Have you looked around to see all the people that are thriving in a free market? What regulated markets are doing well? Postal service?

As a business owner thank a union, law and government? Really. What am I thanking them for? Adding more cost to my organization? Adding more paperwork?

Unions and govt regulations were important in the early to mid 1900s, but what value do they add today. For the record I'm talking about govt regulation around employment. I'm an advocate that we need more govt regulation/separate of banking and investment activities. Understand the context of my comment.


brad

Dirk Rabdau
(dirk9827) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/05/2012 23:20:14 MDT Print View

No matter how you feel about the guy, you gotta hand it to President Bill Clinton. The man can flat-out work a room. That was a great speech.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/06/2012 10:37:42 MDT Print View

That's fine that you want to get of burdensome, ineffective regulations, Brad, I agree

But look at history - the Rs deregulate and reduce taxes for big companies and super-rich. How has it worked for you? I bet you pay 40% tax when you include employer SS. Super rich pay 15%. Some big companies pay 0%. Big banks and oil companies are making record profits.

The economy actually does better when Ds have more power. Middle class people with more money to spend at your business.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: taxes - Jeremy on 09/06/2012 11:33:09 MDT Print View

Jeremy,

Thanks for the comment, but I don't quite understand (and I'd really like to!). The thrust of the article, as I understand it, is that by lowering tax rates but closing loopholes, the wealthier folks - who use loopholes to get out of paying a lot of taxes - will end up paying more than they do with higher rates but lots of loopholes.

Or is it that since the reduction is percentage-based, lower income folks will get much less of a tax break in real dollars since their rate won't go down as much?

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Big hat ... no cattle on 09/06/2012 12:06:16 MDT Print View

"But look at history - the Rs deregulate and reduce taxes for big companies and super-rich. How has it worked for you? I bet you pay 40% tax when you include employer SS. Super rich pay 15%. Some big companies pay 0%. Big banks and oil companies are making record profits."

How are those super regulated companies working out? How much tax money has been pizzed off regulating and bailing out these companies after the government regulates them into financial problems. How much more cost to the consumer, that's you and me btw, has been added in the name of regulation. I'm in favor of some when it works, but it's just like the rest of the stuff the govt does, they have a real crappy track record.

Super rich pay 15% ? The dividend rate is 15%, yes? Corp tax rate is graduated 15% - 35%. Add it up and tell me how much they pay, typically. If it's an S-corp, they pay on the same scale as Brad's personal TR. WTH is super rich anyway? How many US citizens qualify? If we steal all their stuff, how many days of the US debt service would it cover?

Im guessing you've never been around banks or oil companies. God forbid a company show a profit. I love the term record profits btw. If I have two years of profit, one of them will be the record holder... anyway... Ranchers must be sticking it to the man with these high cattle prices too. My prime cuts cost me more than lobster. It's absurd. We all know ranchers have oil wells and don't need the cattle income anyway. Let them eat cake too.

I still don't get this mentality.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/06/2012 12:09:10 MDT Print View

Jerry,

Think you need to check your facts on deregulation:

Airline- signed by Carter
Gramm-Leach (repealed Glass Act)- signed by Clinton
Telecom- signed by Clinton
Motor carrier (ie trucking)- signed by Carter
Rail act- signed by Carter

Brad

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/06/2012 13:07:15 MDT Print View

True enough Brad

You forgot the "free trade" bills that Clinton signed. That precipitated the loss of jobs like Ross Perot warned of.

In Clinton's defense, there was a strong Republican congress pushing him

Regardless - deregulation gets made for the benefit of big companies, not you

and the Rs are saying and voting for more deregulation, and the Ds are saying and voting for less

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/06/2012 13:22:46 MDT Print View

Brad: No I don't own a business but I work for one and also interact with a variety of other business owners who talk about their travails with workers comp. etc. Geeze I was trying to offer a hand here.

As for the rest of your response, I think that you missed my premise. You answer with examples taken from today. I was trying to point out that throughout history it's taken government and legal action to bring about--enforce--many of the benefits that we take for granted today. Among hundreds of examples, last night Clinton mentioned how Eisenhower sent in troops to his home state, and the city of Little Rock, to enforce school desegregation. This is "big government" and some people hated it. Now of course that level of discrimination is universally viewed as appalling and unacceptable. But people had to be forced by law not to discriminate. Again, Lake Michigan used to catch on fire from pollution. Business left on its own would never have cleaned up it's environmental messes without laws requiring that they do so. I could go on but it was my mistake to enter into this discussion in the first place, not because of you but because we all seem to enjoy hitting the ping pong ball back over the net more than moving an argument along. Which is fine, but it's my half-hour lunch break and I need to read about Backpacking issues!

Edited by book on 09/06/2012 13:26:00 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Big hat ... no cattle on 09/06/2012 13:24:20 MDT Print View

"I still don't get this mentality."

It's called Cognitive Dissonance.

You just can't process information that's inconsistent with your beliefs.

The big banks failed after Glass-Steagal was undone. Fewer regulations - they took bigger risks to make more money - then the whole thing collapsed and some of them went bankrupt.

Re-instate Glass Steagal and we'll have many years without banks failing.

The super-rich should pay 40% tax like Brad. They wouldn't earn income without the services paid for by taxes. Now, they're getting those services without paying for them. Free-loading. Entitlement.

What is super rich? $1 million a year? Obama talked about increasing taxes on income above $250K - that's probably fair. It's only on income above $250K so you'de have to make much more than that to have a large effect.

Corporate tax rate is 35% but they have paid for so many loop-holes that no one pays that. GE, Exxon, and Mobil have paid no tax in some recent years. They may pay a little in some years?

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/06/2012 13:30:19 MDT Print View

I can't resist: big +1 on reinstating Glass-Steagall (sp?).! Come on! When you get lost in the woods the first thing that you do is retrace your steps to the trail. Then you continue. Glass-Steagall worked for 75 years. It was greedy wall streeters that saw to its--and many of their own--demise.

Edited by book on 09/06/2012 13:30:49 MDT.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: taxes on 09/06/2012 13:40:23 MDT Print View

Yet another very interesting blog post, with a few charts: http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/deficits-debts-democrats-vs-republicans-us-national-debt-graphs-year-president/

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: taxes on 09/06/2012 13:44:39 MDT Print View

Rick said "I have some unearned income. I paid regular income taxes on the money i invested and the income I get from that already taxed money gets a favorable rate. It's the same for anybody with rentals or a mutual fund or whatever."

The "already taxed" argument is bogus. Earned income was already taxed multiple times as it went through the economy. Unearned income is derived from businesses that use the services provided by the government so it's fair you pay for these services.

I too, occasionally have unearned income. Like I claimed $70K of capital gains one year, my only income, and paid 1/2% of income as federal tax. That was a bill that Obama pushed through by the way. That is totally bogus - I should be paying 30% or 40% like anyone else.

But there's an evil genious to this

Us middle income people occasionally get a small capital gain tax break like this. Then we are so thrilled that we think this is a good thing. But we get only a "few pennies". The "big bucks" are made by the super-rich.

They are taking advantage of our emotional greed and we are to lazy to analyze this carefully.

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
Doug's Charts on 09/06/2012 13:48:05 MDT Print View

one interesting part of the second chart is the huge spike in debt under FDR during the early 1940's necessitated obviously by WW2 which has been described as (incidentally vs intentionally) the greatest stimulus program in history.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/06/2012 13:49:00 MDT Print View

I will also big +1 Glass-Steagall.

Brad

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Taxes are low on 09/06/2012 13:53:11 MDT Print View

Nobody wants to believe this, so it probably is true. That's because none of us likes to pay taxes.

So many discussions of politics these days start from the assumption that we have high taxes on the wealthy. Not true.

Do a quick google search of marginal tax rates over the years. Look at lots of different sources. We are in a time of historically VERY low marginal tax rates. Capital gains rates are historically low too. Even corporate rates are low. We can come to different conclusions on policy but we should start with the understanding that we are living through an era of VERY low tax rates, especially on the wealthy, that have not been seen since before the depression.

Edited by alexdrewreed on 09/06/2012 14:23:10 MDT.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
$250M=super rich on 09/06/2012 13:53:44 MDT Print View

Jerry

"The super-rich should pay 40% tax like Brad. They wouldn't earn income without the services paid for by taxes. Now, they're getting those services without paying for them. Free-loading. Entitlement."

Would you then be in favor a dividend / cap gains tax of 40%? You know, super rich investment income.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: "Romney/Ryan 2012" on 09/06/2012 14:01:14 MDT Print View

Vanguard Mutual Fund sends me junk-mail articles like this https://personal.vanguard.com/us/insights/article/red-ink-092012 by David Wessel, economics editor of The Wall Street Journal.

His explanation of how we went from U.S. federal surplus to deficit is just like I've been saying. Vanguard, David Wessel, and the Wall Street Journal have to be more conservative than liberal:


"First, the economy did a lot worse than anybody expected; the housing bubble burst; we had the financial crisis; we had a big recession. That cut the income to the government and made them spend more on various benefits like unemployment.

Second, Congress cut taxes repeatedly, and so there was less revenue than we had anticipated at the beginning of the 2000s.

Third, the government spent more—a lot more. A couple wars, expansion of Medicare, the bank bailouts. And so, when you have less revenue coming in, you cut taxes, and you spend more than you had projected, you end up with a deficit.

If you have a deficit, you have to pay more interest, so the fourth leg was more interest payments."


Notice he didn't mention any programs that Obama put through like Obama-care - which (arguably?) is budget neutral.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: $250M=super rich on 09/06/2012 14:06:34 MDT Print View

"Would you then be in favor a dividend / cap gains tax of 40%? You know, super rich investment income."

Sure

40% tax on all income over $250K

What was the rate during Clinton? Maybe a little less. The economy did quite well then.

and $250,000 a year is not super-rich. Maybe $1,000,000 per year? But if you tax income above $250,000 a little higher, then someone that made $251,000 would only pay higher tax on the small amount over $250,000 so would be little effected. Super-rich would pay most of their income at higher rate.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: $250M=super rich on 09/06/2012 14:11:38 MDT Print View

So 40% federal and then another 5-10% for state taxes (not all states have a tax). That seems a little too high. But just my two cents.

brad

Rick Adams
(rickadams100) - M
40% on 09/06/2012 14:28:50 MDT Print View

In California, with a modest house, two kids going to college soon, and saving for retirement (we'll be means tested out of SS and maybe Medicare), 250 doesn't get it done. How about 20 ish% on all, first whatever excluded for all, and stop the class warfare. If the feds can't live within 20% cut some programs, or a little from all.
Raise or lower taxes on all instead of the constant pandering for votes on both sides.

The current attitude in this country is one of resentment of the wealthy. I don't resent them, I want to be them. The current discourse from the Dems is that to be well off you must have done it on the back of someone else.

I have met with my fed, state and local elected officials. May as well be talking to martians. To a man (or woman) the are shortsighted and do not even hear words that don't agree with there own. They will bankrupt us and our children.

Obama doesn't understand leadership well enough to grow the economy in a healthy way and raise taxes without demonizing those that disagree with him. He is not much of a leader, more like an agitator.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Cognitive common sense on 09/06/2012 14:51:32 MDT Print View

Jerry

40% tax on all income over $250K

I was thinking more like 10% and a post card size tax return. To show I have a heart, I will throw in a poverty exemption. No more federal this and that hidden taxes like fuel taxes that nobody thinks about. No more witholding. Everyone writes one big check a year so they can really see what the government is taking out of their pockets.

Or consumption tax suits me and it would be sneakier. The financial house will never be in order until the spending is checked. Good luck with that.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Cognitive common sense on 09/06/2012 15:01:34 MDT Print View

Brad - I agree - maybe 40% a little high

Fred - I agree - postage stamp return would be best - one check a year so you'de know how much you paid - except people would forget to save so automatic payment from each paycheck would be better but you would still see how much you were paying.

Consumption tax or sales tax? Those obscure what you're paying and are regressive

You would have to make the return bigger to include deduction for charitable contributions? What about recapture of depreciation? If someone's taking deprectiation now they should have to pay tax when they sell it. etc. So it can't be a postage stamp but it could be much simpler.

Why is it that neither Rs or Ds do anything about making laws simpler?

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: 40% on 09/06/2012 15:09:47 MDT Print View

"Raise or lower taxes on all instead of the constant pandering for votes on both sides"

In order to get elected you need political contributions. Until we publically finance elections and prohibit large contributions, pandering will continue.


"The current attitude in this country is one of resentment of the wealthy. I don't resent them, I want to be them. The current discourse from the Dems is that to be well off you must have done it on the back of someone else."

I just want super-rich to quit buying our government and screwing everything up. I don't resent them.


"Obama doesn't understand leadership well enough to grow the economy in a healthy way and raise taxes without demonizing those that disagree with him."

I think the demonizing is being done against Obama. Obama just wants the Bush tax cuts to end and wants the "Buffet Rule" that above $250,000 you pay %35.

I think your opinions are being influenced by the barage of propoganda by the right.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Taxes are low on 09/06/2012 15:47:05 MDT Print View

"Nobody wants to believe this, so it probably is true. That's because none of us likes to pay taxes.

So many discussions of politics these days start from the assumption that we have high taxes on the wealthy. Not true.

Do a quick google search of marginal tax rates over the years. Look at lots of different sources. We are in a time of historically VERY low marginal tax rates. Capital gains rates are historically low too. Even corporate rates are low. We can come to different conclusions on policy but we should start with the understanding that we are living through an era of VERY low tax rates, especially on the wealthy, that have not been seen since before the depression."


But unfortunately you can't just check the marginal rates. Too many loopholes and writeoffs that changed over time. So you have to take a much deeper look to get to the real rates.

Rick Adams
(rickadams100) - M
40% on 09/06/2012 15:47:49 MDT Print View

Jerry, despite the shared last name you have no idea where my beliefs come from. Just because someone has a different view than yours it does not make them a victim of right wing propaganda, no more than you are the victim of left wing propaganda.

Fred- your are right about the need for people to write a check to pay for our government. You really don't understand the burden of our government until you clean out the checking account for uncle sam. Automatic withholding simply numbs the masses. Sure it's harder for the average joe, that's the point. Many of my employees don't have any concept about real wages, simply take home pay.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Uproared on 09/06/2012 16:16:20 MDT Print View

Rick

A friend of mine told me 20 years ago. If Americans had to write a check for their taxes, all of them, the torches and pitchforks would come out of the closet.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: 40% on 09/06/2012 16:26:17 MDT Print View

Of course I'm being a little playful, Rick with the same last name : )

But if you really think that Obama is demonizing the Rs, you can not be thinking clearly.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Taxes are low on 09/06/2012 16:30:15 MDT Print View

"But unfortunately you can't just check the marginal rates. Too many loopholes and writeoffs that changed over time. So you have to take a much deeper look to get to the real rates."

Two rich people have revealed their tax rate - Romney between 13% and 15% - Obama was something like 15%.

I'm too lazy to look up recent articles that document how the top 5000 (?) familes pay about 15%.

Just logic it through - capital gains rate is 15% - super rich have all this accumulated wealth and will structure it to get income at 15% tax rate

Rick Adams
(rickadams100) - M
Pitchfork on 09/06/2012 17:30:03 MDT Print View

Fred....any time you want to break out the pitchforks and torches I'm in. Just don't tell Jerry, I don't want to have to fork him.

Jeremy B.
(requiem) - F - M

Locale: Northern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: taxes - Doug on 09/07/2012 02:43:43 MDT Print View

Doug,

Over the time period mentioned in the article, the top 1%'s share of total income rose from 8% to almost 20%. If their share of income instead remained constant, reducing the top tax rates would indeed make the tax system less progressive, and an increase in the 1%'s share of income tax paid would be quite a conundrum. (You'd then need to call in other explanations, like increased closing of loopholes, to account for it.)

However, when the top 1%'s share of the total income more than doubles, it easily counteracts the lowering of their tax rates. Thus, once can claim the top 1% are paying an even greater share of total income taxes even though their rates were lowered.

While I generally agree with the idea that punitive tax rates will act as a deterrent to income (and an incentive to seek out tax havens), I think the article's "surge in taxes paid by the rich" is nearly entirely the result of the rich getting a much larger slice of the income pie.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: taxes - Doug on 09/07/2012 08:18:48 MDT Print View

Thanks Jeremy, it's always the little bits of info left out in some of these articles - that would provide great (and more honest) context - that make it harder to discern something resembling the truth. I appreciate the added context.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: taxes - Doug on 09/07/2012 08:33:33 MDT Print View

So, the super-rich have a bigger share of income and wealth due to a bunch of reasons

One thing is that banks have been deregulated, there are huge profits (when they're not going broke), and huge bonuses that create new super-rich. This is because of changes in government policy that were bought with political contributions.

Or the wages of CEOs have gone up astronomically. I bet there are some changed government policies that have helped. Since corporations are chartered by the government - they get some advantages like limited liability - in return they could make it easier for stockholders to reign in CEO salaries...

And there are hundreds of other government policies that help the super-rich.

If you're saying that since they make twice as much as they used to, they should pay half the tax rate, that doesn't make any sense.

When you concentrate the income and wealth, there isn't a huge middle class to buy stuff and create a healthy economy.

And it's not "punitive" tax rate on rich people - it's just the same as everyone else rather than a special low rate that they bought from the government

And get rid of all those other government policies they bought to get richer

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: taxes - Doug on 09/07/2012 13:41:18 MDT Print View

Jeremy Bishop,

"Over the time period mentioned in the article, the top 1%'s share of total income rose from 8% to almost 20%"

Why the cute math? Isn't it enough to state the facts as they really exist? The real numbers should be good enough, no? No reason to round 17% to "almost 20%" now is there?

By the great amount of rounding we could just as easily call it 15%.

And unlike you, I will provide a source:
http://cbo.gov/sites/default/files/cbofiles/attachments/10-25-HouseholdIncome.pdf

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
No need to fork Jerry on 09/07/2012 14:46:15 MDT Print View

"Fred....any time you want to break out the pitchforks and torches I'm in. Just don't tell Jerry, I don't want to have to fork him."

Rick
Jerry is not a threat. He thinks the super rich make $250M and is distracted by "big oil". :-)
I worked for a guy that told me I should have more money than I could spend @ $50M a year with a stay at home mom and 2 kids in the metroplex. DEEE - lusional Didn't work there long.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: No need to fork Jerry on 09/07/2012 14:57:09 MDT Print View

I think you mean $250K

$250M has to be super-rich by anyone's measure

If you had $50M a year, I hope you could survive on that

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
ok on 09/07/2012 15:03:04 MDT Print View

We use the m at work for thousands. Habit

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: ok on 09/07/2012 15:06:03 MDT Print View

Me too Fred. M for thousands and MM for millions.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
mm on 09/07/2012 15:11:27 MDT Print View

Wonder what all the gazzillionares use for their gazzillions? Prolly an R

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: ok on 09/07/2012 15:13:25 MDT Print View

"M for thousands and MM for millions"

Is that a banking/financial convention?

Jeremy B.
(requiem) - F - M

Locale: Northern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: taxes - Doug on 09/07/2012 15:16:41 MDT Print View

Michael,

I think the proper income number to use when wargaming the effects of tax rates is pre-tax income, not after-tax. I assume that your 17% number is that in page 22, Fig. 3 of your pdf, and is therefore representing after-tax income.

I will try posting some examples later, along with sources for pre-tax income share. Hitting precise numbers doesn't matter for the point I was trying to make to hold; I was initially going to post a simple counter-example with somewhat arbitrarily-chosen numbers.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: ok on 09/07/2012 15:21:42 MDT Print View

"M for thousands and MM for millions"

"Is that a banking/financial convention?"

Indeed.

Oh and Gazillion would be MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Romney/Ryan 2012 on 09/07/2012 16:39:01 MDT Print View

its a combination of roman numerals and algebra
M=1000

MM=M*M

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Re: Re: Taxes are low on 09/07/2012 17:39:44 MDT Print View

I wish you guys would talk a lot more in terms of nett income and its buying power. That is all that the vast majority of people everywhere in the world actually see. Personally I don't really care what my tax rate is, as long as we have enough to get by. Now, what constitutes 'super-wealthy' is a silly argument to me, as humans seem to live to their means. I don't have a huge house in an expensive area, I don't own a yacht, we hardly ever even go out for dinner. But our quality of life is very high in non-material measures. Maybe a little less greed all around and a lot more living simply is what is needed to turn the economy around, rather than focusing on "growing the economy" whatever that means. Growing an economy can mean selling off natural resources, outsourcing jobs, investing in automation to replace real people, or anything else that increases GDP without necessarily improving the lot of the average citizen.

Anthony Weston
(anthonyweston) - MLife

Locale: Southern CA
x on 09/07/2012 21:02:53 MDT Print View

The problem I have is the price of milk and eggs has doubled.
I used to buy pants from LL Bean for $39 and they still have the same pants but now they are $69 and my salary has not changed. But you don't hear about that. There was a guy from the gov in the Bronx and he told the crowd there was no inflation because an IPAD II costs the same as what an IPAD used to cost but it's more powerful. A man in the crowd stood up and said "But we can't eat IPAD's"

Who ever gets in I hope the sincerely find a way to fix things.

R S
(rps76) - F
R&R 2012 on 09/08/2012 07:04:24 MDT Print View

Ronnie

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
How much? on 09/08/2012 07:11:52 MDT Print View

If you can pay your bills, have enough left over for outside interests and beer, do you need any more?

Jonathan Jessop
(Jonathan_Jessop)
Re: R&R 2012 on 09/22/2012 20:42:28 MDT Print View

What exactly did Reagan repair? He tripled the national debt.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: R&R 2012 on 09/22/2012 20:52:36 MDT Print View

"What exactly did Reagan repair? He tripled the national debt."

Repairing our sense of exceptionalism doesn't come cheap.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Reagan repairs on 09/24/2012 11:57:56 MDT Print View

"What exactly did Reagan repair? He tripled the national debt."

Really? Who holds the checkbook and who had it then? Talk to some military guys that were in during the late seventies and it might give you a clue. I know some pretty hard core democrats that welcomed Reagan with open arms after enduring the guy before him.

Like my wife says, "why go to the trouble of learning any history? They say it's just gonna repeat itself anyway."

Can't argue with that kind of logic.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Reagan repairs on 09/26/2012 16:24:47 MDT Print View

I was just worried "Stench" would burn out before the Republican Convention and they'de nominate Jeb Bush or Christy or someone else

David Adair
(DavidAdair) - M

Locale: West Dakota
Romney on 09/26/2012 19:13:09 MDT Print View

Jerry- please consider the possibility that Romney is a nice man who is reasonably well qualified and interested in serving his country on behalf of his own family and the people of this country. Yes, in these days late night talk shows and 24 hour "news" it's going to be hard to grasp.

Dave T
(DaveT) - F
romney. on 09/26/2012 19:15:08 MDT Print View

well, perhaps the 53% of the country that aren't freeloaders.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney on 09/26/2012 20:46:56 MDT Print View

David - it's hard to know much about Romney. It seems like he'll do or say anything to get elected. He'll be liberal or far right. I wonder what a president Romney would be like.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Romney on 10/03/2012 21:40:45 MDT Print View

Romney wins debate round 1.

R K
(oiboyroi) - M

Locale: South West US
Re: Re: Re: Romney on 10/03/2012 21:46:15 MDT Print View

I don't think so but that's what they're saying on Fox news. Why wasn't Gary Johnson there?

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Re: Re: Romney on 10/03/2012 21:56:34 MDT Print View

That's what they are saying everywhere. CNN poll of likely voters who watched.


Romney -- 67%
Obama -- 24%

And that's after 59% thought Obama would go better


Can claim CNN is right of center.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Debate. on 10/03/2012 22:00:07 MDT Print View

CBS poll of undecided voters: 46% Romney, 22% BO, rest tie.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Debate. on 10/03/2012 22:03:02 MDT Print View

Another view from the left: Mathews was flipping out over Obama getting stomped.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mobileweb/2012/10/03/chris-matthews-obama-debate_n_1937950.html?utm_hp_ref=media

R K
(oiboyroi) - M

Locale: South West US
Re: Re: Debate. on 10/03/2012 22:21:30 MDT Print View

Point Conceded. I agree Mr. Romney did very well. I still dont agree with his policies though, no matter how well delivered they were.

Robert Perkins
(rp3957)

Locale: The Sierras
Romney/Obama on 10/03/2012 22:28:40 MDT Print View

Obama without a TelePrompTer= him looking like the bumbler that the media chooses to ignore! I also ran a timer for each response, and on average, Obama went over his 2 minute limit anywhere from 32 secs to 1:35 secs, mostly without being shut down by the moderator. He was repeating the same pablum he gets away with on shows like The View where he can repeat his lies without getting challenged.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Romney/Obama on 10/04/2012 00:01:56 MDT Print View

I'm afraid you're right, Romney looked better. Romney has had a lot of experience in recent times with debates.

I wonder if it will change anyone's mind. Interesting to see polls in the next few days.

Obama missed too many opportunities, like he should have pointed out the $716 billion is the amount health providers agreed they saved because they will have fewer un-insured people because of Obama-care - not money being taken from medicare people. He should have used the term "Romney-care".

Or that Romney changed his opinion on many issues so you don't really know what if anything he beleives - "etch-a-sketch"

Interesting that you sniveling cowards wouldn't speak up when Romney was crashing and burning a few days ago but now you're gloating because you think he has a chance.

I just hope you're wrong

Just trying to make joke calling you "sniveling cowards" : )

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Hmm on 10/04/2012 00:20:28 MDT Print View

Don't really get the humor.

And considering the fact that a debate just happened I'd say it is an appropriate time to discuss.

Edited by mpl_35 on 10/04/2012 00:24:14 MDT.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Hmm on 10/04/2012 06:48:36 MDT Print View

I watched the movie "Grown Ups" instead of the debate. It was a lot more entertaining and I didn't have to listen to a couple of liars spew more political rhetoric.

Brad

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Hmm on 10/04/2012 06:55:00 MDT Print View

"I watched the movie "Grown Ups" instead of the debate. It was a lot more entertaining and I didn't have to listen to a couple of liars spew more political rhetoric. "

How true! I watched the Orioles/TB game. I didn't need a poll to tell me who won. Much easier.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Hmm on 10/04/2012 06:57:20 MDT Print View

No broadcast TV in this house. The Redwood Curtain is closed. No bla, bla... Just fix something.

Robert Perkins
(rp3957)

Locale: The Sierras
Romney/Ryan on 10/04/2012 07:18:15 MDT Print View

It's not gloating, it is merely pointing out what is painfully obvious to those of us that don't get our news from PMSNBC, CNN, or the Huffington Post, that without a TelePrompTer, this guy is as big of a bumbler as Bush ever was. He gets a free 'pass' because he is a supposed 'hip' Democrat, so none of his policies that are sending us to economic ruin matter. When you got a station with the likes of Al Sharpton, and Mr. 'I have a thrill running up my leg whenever Obama speaks' Chris Matthews, you lose all sense of ANY credibility!

Edited by rp3957 on 10/05/2012 07:13:00 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Hmm on 10/04/2012 07:51:22 MDT Print View

"And considering the fact that a debate just happened I'd say it is an appropriate time to discuss"

There was a lot of traffic on this topic, but it seemed to die down as Romney faded away in polls, but after he comes back a little then there are a bunch of pro-Romney posts.

But whatever...

I'm just p...ed that Romney did better than Obama

But, if you and Romney were honest, you'de admit that the reason Romney doesn't like Obama-care is that it's a democratic party proposal and he thinks it's an issue he can win the presidency over.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Debating on 10/04/2012 08:08:29 MDT Print View

I'm not a big Romney fan but what little I saw, he did look like the knowing adult in the room. I am beginning to feel a little sorry for O. He cited an example of a hospital that was efficient and went on to suggest it should be the model/template for all, GOV'T mandated. Sometimes I think the guy does want things better, he just doesn't have a clue how to go about it. He has no practical experience, never ran a business, never held a "normal" job, and then was handed the most important job in the world and looks a fool. It's kinda hard not to feel a little sorry for the guy.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
O my on 10/04/2012 08:16:52 MDT Print View

@Jerry

"if you and Romney were honest, you'de admit that the reason Romney doesn't like Obama-care is that it's a democratic party proposal and he thinks it's an issue he can win the presidency over"

It's not a federal issue. Whether you think it's a good idea or not, it's not the role of the fed.

Robert Perkins
(rp3957)

Locale: The Sierras
Romney/Ryan on 10/04/2012 08:22:00 MDT Print View

I'll feel some empathy for O once he's out of office and not sending out country down the same path as Greece! Right now I think he is a dangerous, clueless leader.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 08:23:55 MDT Print View

Romney has never run a business. He has been a "vulture capitalist" that takes money out of businesses before bankrupting them. Or made investments in unhealthy businesses, like Staples, that eventually got better but Romney had nothing to do with running the business.

Ask Osama if Obama's a fool

Ask Kidafi - he got away with murder for years before Obama finally got justice

The economy's not great, but the stock market is at close to record levels so investors are voting that Obama's doing okay. It took 10 or 15 years to recover from the 1930 crash - but that was a worse recession. In the 1970s it took 10 years to recover but that wasn't as bad a recession.

I feel sorry for O - because the opposition's #1 priority is to make sure he's not re-elected and will try to block any progress. It's amazing O has accomplished anything.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: O my on 10/04/2012 08:27:47 MDT Print View

"It's not a federal issue. Whether you think it's a good idea or not, it's not the role of the fed."

The Supreme's ruled otherwise.

That's what they said about social security and medicare.

"Obama-care" is an idea that conservative groups, like the Heritage Foundation, came up with as an alternative to "medicare for all"

if you and Romney were honest, you'de admit that the reason Romney doesn't like Obama-care is that it's a democratic party proposal and he thinks it's an issue he can win the presidency over

Michael Duke
(mpd1690) - F
Re: Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 08:34:53 MDT Print View

"Romney has never run a business. He has been a "vulture capitalist" that takes money out of businesses before bankrupting them. Or made investments in unhealthy businesses, like Staples, that eventually got better but Romney had nothing to do with running the business."

"Romney’s role with companies varied. With Staples, he sat on the company board for more than a decade. With many others, he left oversight and daily management to his associates appointed to company boards and executives running the businesses, said Wolpow. Executives of several companies bought by Bain said they had little or no interaction with Romney."

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-07-20/romney-as-job-creator-clashes-with-bain-record-of-job-cuts.html

Perhaps he has done some questionable things as a business leader, but to say that Bain Capital is not a business, and that he did not have any hand in running any business is false.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Run it like a business. on 10/04/2012 08:38:54 MDT Print View

Because global human interaction is just that simple.

...

Randian fetishization of the businessman at its finest.

Edited by xnomanx on 10/04/2012 08:49:27 MDT.

Michael Duke
(mpd1690) - F
Re: Re: O my on 10/04/2012 08:45:55 MDT Print View

A few things:

"Obama missed too many opportunities, like he should have pointed out the $716 billion is the amount health providers agreed they saved because they will have fewer un-insured people because of Obama-care - not money being taken from medicare people. He should have used the term "Romney-care"."

There are other options to save money besides using Obama-care. I will tie this point in later, but the Supreme Court ruled that the mandate was legal. That means that you can mandate people to have insurance, or fine them. If I am interpreting your point correctly, this is where the 716 billion in savings comes from. You can have any individual mandate without Obama-care.



""It's not a federal issue. Whether you think it's a good idea or not, it's not the role of the fed."

The Supreme's ruled otherwise."


The Supreme Court did not rule that health care is the role of the Federal Government. The SC ruled that the individual mandate was legal. Ruling something legal is much different than ruling it "the role of the fed". For example, it is not illegal for me to post this information, but that does not mean that I have to, or that it is my role to.

Michael Duke
(mpd1690) - F
Re: Run it like a business. on 10/04/2012 08:49:16 MDT Print View

"Because the sum of all human interactions in this world are just that simple."

This really depends on what each individual thinks the role of government should be.

(as disclosure, I am an undecided voter. I just want people to vote informed)

Edited by mpd1690 on 10/04/2012 08:52:03 MDT.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 08:53:34 MDT Print View

"He has been a "vulture capitalist" that takes money out of businesses before bankrupting them."

Venture Capital firms look for investments that will generate very large returns, often in the order of 35% or greater per annum, and most often for an equity stake should the company not perform. Any company that requires the services of a Venture Capital firm cannot get enough financing through conventional sources or are at the precipice of failure. That is, no longer a going concern. To say that Romney, having had invested into a company and then was forced to take over a company because of poor operating performance and then be forced to divest the company's assets indicates that he can't run a business is ludicrous and indicates that perhaps you are unaware of how the process works.

Shall we discuss Obama's investment into companies researching and developing alternative fuels? How is that track record and what is the difference between what Romney did and what Obama has done? The difference is that Romney's company made a positive return. Obama's didn't. And yet there were still no jobs created.

More importantly, pick your poison - Socialism or Capitalism. You can't have Capitalism when things are good and Socialism when things are bad.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Hmm on 10/04/2012 09:12:02 MDT Print View

I am with Brad, and Doug, and Ken.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: O my on 10/04/2012 09:18:58 MDT Print View

The $716 billion is not money taken from seniors - that's just a Republican, focus group tested issue that they think will convince people to vote for them

Romney initially said that he wanted to repeal Obama-care, but things like not allowing insurance companies to deny coverage based on pre-existing conditions are popular, so now Romney is in favor of this. And when he was governor, he argued that if you disallow pre-existing conditions, you have to mandate that everyone have insurance or it won't work economically - people will just wait to get insurance until they get sick.

But mandates are another focus group tested issue that Republicans think they can use, so Romney says this is a violation of the 10th amendment - another focus group tested argument that Republican's think they can use.

Romney will say anything to get elected. Who knows what would happen after he got elected.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 09:21:36 MDT Print View

"More importantly, pick your poison - Socialism or Capitalism. You can't have Capitalism when things are good and Socialism when things are bad."

Since when?
That strategy seems to work pretty well for big business and the banking industry in this country. Is our collective memory so short that we've already forgotten the bailouts? Forgotten that neither democrats nor republicans have yet to make any meaningful effort to press for the prosecution of anyone noteworthy in the whole fiasco?

But hey, no worries, we'll just go and rewrite the script to paint the homeowner who saddled themselves with an adjustable rate, interest only home loan and then lost their job as the villain in this comedy.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: O my on 10/04/2012 09:22:31 MDT Print View

"Romney will say anything to get elected. Who knows what would happen after he got elected."

Alternatively, Obama will say anything to get elected. Who knows what would happen after he got elected.

Except, of course, we know.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
but more importantly... on 10/04/2012 09:24:51 MDT Print View

The "I think a squirrel just ran up my leg" guy, had another meltdown after the debate.

@ Jerry I don't know where to start. Maybe turn off MSNBC for a while. I remember the Today Show trying to make T Boone Pickens look like a villain in October of '87. It would have made a good SNL skit.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: but more importantly... on 10/04/2012 09:29:22 MDT Print View

Good point about SNL, Fred

Maybe Tina Fey parody of Sarah Palin is more responsible for Obama winning than anything else : )

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
SNL on 10/04/2012 09:38:48 MDT Print View

Tina does a great Sarah.

"Maybe Tina Fey parody of Sarah Palin is more responsible for Obama winning than anything else : )"

The sad part is, it wouldn't suprise me.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: SNL on 10/04/2012 09:44:51 MDT Print View

Time for some timely SNL work to make sure Obama is re-elected

We found something to agree on : )

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 09:45:52 MDT Print View

"That strategy seems to work pretty well for big business and the banking industry in this country. Is our collective memory so short that we've already forgotten the bailouts?"

That strategy was a mess. The US touts itself as a Capitalist economy. What should have happened was that some of the banks should have failed. No bailout. Would people have lost their homes? Yes. Did they lose their homes after the bailout? Yes.

The fact that some banks were forced to take the bailout (i.e. Wells Fargo) was a forcefed attempt at a social program that wasn't required. Big business? You mean like those in the Auto Industry? Like Ford, that didn't even need nor want a bailout and were thankfully permitted to opt out. GM is in trouble again. Do they need another bailout? You paying?

Not to mention, a large number of companies that received bailouts are now bankrupt in spite of them.

The banks never forced anyone to sign up for variable rate mortgages and home equity loans (very funny, Sir). The banks did a great marketing job and the public fell for it - what, you mean I can get something for nothing? Sign me up! The economy works like a zero sum game. Free doesn't exist. Take some responsibility for your actions. If 'you' were silly enough to live beyond your means then I suggest more education is on the menu.

No new jobs but free phones under Obama. Thank goodness.

Ernie Elkins
(EarthDweller)

Locale: North Carolina
Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 09:54:52 MDT Print View

"I'm not a big Romney fan but what little I saw, he did look like the knowing adult in the room. I am beginning to feel a little sorry for O."

While I, too, am beginning to feel sorry for Obama, it's certainly not because he's out of his depth. Rather, it's because it must be immensely frustrating to debate a seemingly shameless liar who, essentially, claims to have magic wand that will somehow fix everything at no cost for anyone, anywhere. From where I sat, Obama was the "knowing adult," the one who made it clear that you can't have your cake and eat it too, that you can't do all of the things that Romney claims that he can do without either blowing up the deficit (as Republican presidents have pretty darn good track record of doing) or cutting programs that are essential to the health and prosperity of our nation.

David Lutz
(davidlutz)

Locale: Bay Area
"Romney/Ryan 2012" on 10/04/2012 09:58:18 MDT Print View

Romney just needs to convince a few percentage points of likely voters that he's a reasonable guy and he will win.

He went a long way towards accomplishing that last night.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 10:01:48 MDT Print View

"cutting programs that are essential to the health and prosperity of our nation"

Any chance you can list these?

R S
(rps76) - F
Re: Re: Re: Re: Romney on 10/04/2012 10:07:53 MDT Print View

@R K "I don't think so but that's what they're saying on Fox news."

Did you even watch it?

R S
(rps76) - F
Debate on 10/04/2012 10:09:50 MDT Print View

For ANYONE to think that Romney did not win that debate is absurd. And if you really do think Obama won, do the country a favor and don't vote this year. You're clueless.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Hidden humor? on 10/04/2012 10:10:53 MDT Print View

@ Ernie

"While I, too, am beginning to feel sorry for Obama, it's certainly not because he's out of his depth."

This is when i realized you were pulling my leg.

Michael Duke
(mpd1690) - F
Re: Re: Re: Re: O my on 10/04/2012 10:16:17 MDT Print View

Maybe I'm not understanding your original premise, but I never said anything about seniors. I am discussing people that will be covered by individual mandates. Was this not what you were discussing?

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Debate on 10/04/2012 10:17:19 MDT Print View

My bad.

Same $hit, different day.
Opening my mouth on this thread is what I get for not going surfing today.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Debate on 10/04/2012 10:36:06 MDT Print View

Craig - I am voting for you for President of BPL. Relax.

Lets discuss. It's fun.

BTW, I thought this was an interesting comment from Al Gore:

"Obama arrived in Denver at 2 p.m. today — just a few hours before the debate started. Romney did his debate prep in Denver. When you go to 5,000 feet, and you only have a few hours to adjust, I don't know..."

Ouch. Even Gore is admitting that Obama's debate was not ideal.

Ah well, a few more to go.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 10:57:31 MDT Print View

"The fact that some banks were forced to take the bailout (i.e. Wells Fargo) was a forcefed attempt at a social program that wasn't required. Big business? You mean like those in the Auto Industry? Like Ford, that didn't even need nor want a bailout and were thankfully permitted to opt out. GM is in trouble again. Do they need another bailout? You paying?..."

The bailouts were a good thing

Both Bush and Obama did them

The Republicans whose #1 priority was voting against anything Obama, voted for the bailouts

The banks quit lending because they didn't know who would go bankrupt next. The system totally froze up. It required government intervention to reassure businesses that the system would recover.

Ford just happened to get a major refinancing before the crisis so they didn't need credit. It was part luck. Although Ford seems to have been better run in a number of other ways too.

If GM had gone bankrupt (like Romney advocated in an editorial, that he now contradicts because that's what's required to get elected) and they laid everyone off, then all their suppliers would have gone bankrupt, and then Ford would have gone bankrupt. And the rest of the economy would have followed. We would have re-lived the 1930s. Who knows how that would all play out.

Now that the crisis is over it's easy to say they should have just let them fail.

And it's easy to say they should have done it differently. It seems like they were too easy on the banks. They made good all AIGs insurance policies to banks without making the banks take more of a hit. And afterwords, the Fed created money out of thin air and lent it to banks which loaned it to others at higher rate so they made huge profits which enabled them to recover - it's all a rigged game.

But, they did avert the crisis...

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 11:17:47 MDT Print View

"But, they did avert the crisis..."

I respectfully disagree. From my perspective, they provided a band aid solution funded by printing money supply but have not at all stopped the bleeding that continues today.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Debating on 10/04/2012 11:43:13 MDT Print View

" they provided a band aid solution funded by printing money supply but have not at all stopped the bleeding that continues today"

I agree - but we now have a chronic problem

The crisis - no bank would lend any money to anyone - is averted

Since the problem is not critical, political deadlock prevents any solution

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Banking on 10/04/2012 13:41:52 MDT Print View

@ Jerry

"The banks quit lending because they didn't know who would go bankrupt next. The system totally froze up. It required government intervention to reassure businesses that the system would recover."

J this is so far off base that I can't even begin to address it. Banks in mainstream America try to lend money to borrowers that are able to repay. This is how they make their money which in turn rewards the investors for risking their capital. Without getting into regulations, most of the tightening of credit was due to the fubared policies and oversight of congress and the lack of confidence in the economy.

The government didn't stabilize anything. It created the instability in the first place. The bailouts are BS and I think Bush will admit now that his part in the first one was a mistake. I'm involved in a highly regulated industry. Don't let that fool you...the regulations are costing us (that includes you) billions and do very little to safe the system. Looking for an industry that's inefficient, frequentally in trouble, is prone to scandal and corruption and seems to always be in the news? Find a highly regulated one.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Banking on 10/04/2012 13:55:26 MDT Print View

I knew we wouldn't agree for very long

Do you agree that removing Glass Stegal was a big part of the problem?

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Glass Steagall on 10/04/2012 15:07:30 MDT Print View

"Do you agree that removing Glass Stegal was a big part of the problem?"

Super duper short version:
Govt-insured banks and their deposits, was not a significant source of the problem. Consolidations were taking place before GS was repealed. So I guess the simple answer to your complex question is NO.

R K
(oiboyroi) - M

Locale: South West US
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Romney on 10/04/2012 15:13:42 MDT Print View

@ RS

Not only did I watch it but more importantly I listened carefully to what was being said. Mr. Romney certainly did look confident and well composed which, if that's how you're judging, then yea he won. If you're judging by content, consistency and understand of economics then Obama won by a long shot.

Mr. Romney stated he would not cut taxes for the top 1% earners, yet he has previously stated, many times, that he will cut taxes 20% across the board, including the top 1%. So which one is it? The tax policy center has analyzed his plan and stated that his will cost the average family more money, not less like he stated last night. He didn't mention any of the loopholes he would close either.

He said he's for the "pursuit of happiness for all" yet he firmly stand against g** marriage. Yea, that makes sense.

So why would I vote for someone who I don't know where they stand? I'm not willing to roll the dice like that. It just seems like he will say anything, regardless of truth, to get your vote. That's no way to "win" a debate.

From one clueless guy to another, RS, I won't vote if you don't. ;)

No one even seem to notice Gary wasn't in the debate.

R K
(oiboyroi) - M

Locale: South West US
Re: Debate on 10/04/2012 15:19:52 MDT Print View

"Virtually every time Mr. Romney spoke, he misrepresented the platform on which he and Paul Ryan are actually running."

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/04/opinion/an-unhelpful-presidential-debate.html

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Glass Steagall on 10/04/2012 15:31:14 MDT Print View

I understood a big problem to be that banks were (and still are) making large profits selling derivatives on mortgages.

So they need more mortgages.

The profit they make off the derivatives way exceeds the profit they make from the mortgages.

Therefore, there's no big motivation to make sure the mortgages are good - just get them done so they can package into derivatives

Then, Brooksley Born, the Commodity Futures Trading Commision head recognized there was a huge amount of derivative exposure that could cause bank meltdown and tried to regulate which was her responsibility, but the weazel Alan Greenspan, Rubin, Summers, and SEC chairman Levit conspired to shut her down, which they did, so she quit. Greenspan made his comment about the free market and knowledgeable investors. This was all under Clinton but the congress was Republican and exerted a lot of pressure.

Then they passed Gramm-Leach-Bliley which completely repealed Glass-Stegal which opened the door to more mischief - passed by Republicans and signed by Clinton.

Under Bush there was more deregulation.

Then, as Born had figured out, it happened and the banks melted down. Levit admitted Born was right and regretted conspiring against Born. Greenspan admitted he was wrong but has since reneged - the weazel.

I get most of my information from watching "Frontline" on the "Communist" PBS.

Glass Stegal seperates investment banks (that do derivatives) from savings banks (that do mortgages) so it avoids all this. This happened before, in the 1930s, which precipitated the law.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Romney on 10/04/2012 15:38:02 MDT Print View

"Mr. Romney stated he would not cut taxes for the top 1% earners, yet he has previously stated, many times, that he will cut taxes 20% across the board, including the top 1%."

There's an evil genious to that

For sure Obama planned on how to shoot down Romney 20% ($5 Trillion) tax cut plan.

But how could Obama respond when Romney said "I never proposed a $5 Trillion cut".

It takes "cojones" for Romney to say that - I'll give him that.

Like Goebel said - if you're going to say a lie, make it a big one, it will be so fantastic that people will have to believe you. I'm channeling FDR now...

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
ironic on 10/04/2012 15:46:00 MDT Print View

Isn't it ironic, that after getting whipped in the debate, the left cries foul? I loved the first accusations of Romney bullying the moderator and taking more time. When that didn't stand up as Obama used about 4.5 minutes more, they move on to saying all Romney did was lie. Also really like the claim that the elevation effected Obama. Thats a good one.

Its just one debate, man up left. you lost but you have a chance to redeem yourself.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: ironic on 10/04/2012 16:03:14 MDT Print View

"I'm afraid you're right, Romney looked better."

I wouldn't call it whipped though.

I was listening to MSNBC and other liberal places a little afterwords and my impression was that they all were depressed how badly Obama did.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Rope-a-dope on 10/04/2012 16:07:25 MDT Print View

In Obama's senate office, prominantly displayed, was the iconic photo of Ali looming over Foreman after knocking him out.

Ali's rope-a-dope was letting Foreman punch away until he got tired, then Ali knocked him out

Maybe that's the Obama-Romney debate

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
jerry on 10/04/2012 16:07:40 MDT Print View

Yep. You admitted it. And most sources immediately afterwars as well.

But the tune shifted quickly. Quite quickly the left commentators started making excuses. Time, Elevation, Lies!!!

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
rope a dope on 10/04/2012 16:09:45 MDT Print View

Well I consider Obama the dope... :)

But i figure obama will bounce back somewhat. But he can't run on his record so I gues he can only sling mud.

And nobody noticed Gary Johnson not there because he isn't a viable candidate. The left only wishes he was there so he could take away a bit of Romeny's base.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
GS on 10/04/2012 16:16:15 MDT Print View

Investment banks got into trouble by buying and holding AAA-rated Mortgage Backed Securities. Let that sink in.

And again the consolidation was already taking place. The firewall provided by GS between securities and insured deposits was not the issue.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
GS on 10/04/2012 16:19:25 MDT Print View

Packaged RE debt is sold all the time.

R K
(oiboyroi) - M

Locale: South West US
Re: ironic on 10/04/2012 16:46:23 MDT Print View

@Michael,

I admit the left is acting sore about it. Everyone had high hopes for the President. I know better than to trust any politician but if they're going to pull the wool over my eyes, at least make a good effort at it. Mr. Romney was just too obvious.

Another list of misrepresentations:
http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2012/10/04/958801/at-last-nights-debate-romney-told-27-myths-in-38-minutes/?mobile=nc

Edit: Gary's not viable? Crap argument. He's on the ballot, so why was he not allowed to debate? People might have liked what he has to say. I for one have noticed a lot more chatter about third parties since they're fed up with Dems and Reps. I don't support him personally, but he should have been allowed to debate. Options are always good.

Edited by oiboyroi on 10/04/2012 17:41:52 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: GS on 10/04/2012 16:53:39 MDT Print View

I think a big part of the problem was the large number of derivatives.

Highly leveraged - if the value of the mortgages go down a little, the derivatives lose all their value.

And people that bought derivatives didn't understand what they were buying.

And they split up the mortgages into several "tranches" some were supposed to be less risky, but then they all became worthless. I think this was some of your "AAA" investments.

It's all way too complicated and the bankers were making huge bonuses that motivated them to mis-represent the derivatives.

Somehow, from 1940 or whatever, after the great depression, to 2000, there were very few bank failures except when they deregulated Saving and Loans which caused a bunch of bankruptcies. At least in that case they criminally prosecuted a bunch of people.

But, there is an evil genious to deregulating banks, which causes bank failures, and then claim the problem was that they didn't deregulate enough.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Regulated on 10/04/2012 17:18:35 MDT Print View

Jerry

I don't know of anyone that wants the complete absence of regulation in securities and banking markets. We don't have to go back far to find unethical, illegal, greedy, asshats that should have been hung from the nearest tree, when left to their own policies. The problem is the complexity and cost of a system in place today that is absolutely worthless. The fact that people are asking for more of it, is a little revealing.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Regulated on 10/04/2012 17:30:21 MDT Print View

"The problem is the complexity and cost of a system in place today that is absolutely worthless."

Unfortunately, we have the best government money can buy so the regulations are pretty screwy. I think we've come to another agreement.

One thing would be to make political contributions (bribes) illegal, including third parties buying ads.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Romney/Ryan 2012 on 10/04/2012 18:03:10 MDT Print View

tthread

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: ironic on 10/04/2012 18:43:49 MDT Print View

Yeah. I'm going to go with thinkprogress. I notice they have a headline with Romney's breakdown but not Obama... Completely onesided - enough said.

There are plenty of places to go for misrepresentations for BOTH sides.

Gary is not viable? Do you disagree? This is far from the first time other candidates have been excluded. Where do you want to draw the line?

Why are you not crying for Jill Stein? Or is it just because you want the one other candidate to steal Republican votes and not the one that would take Dem votes?

R K
(oiboyroi) - M

Locale: South West US
Re: Re: Re: ironic on 10/04/2012 19:52:44 MDT Print View

Well of course its one sided, Michael, I'm not going to do your arguing for you. I agree there are both sides are misrepresenting. It just seems like Romney does it more often and blatantly. It's as if he thinks no one will notice. If you find an article about Obama misrepresenting at last nights debate, I will read it and consider it.

They estimate Gary to get 6% or more of the popular vote. That's a decent chunk of votes IMO. Electoral votes not so much but Romney isn't doing well there either.

I think if they are on the ballot, they should debate. I hadn't mentioned Jill Stein because I hadn't heard of her, honestly. Thanks for pointing her out.

EDIT: Good point Ken. I

Edited by oiboyroi on 10/04/2012 19:55:25 MDT.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Re: Re: ironic on 10/04/2012 21:54:12 MDT Print View

Ken's just bitter about MLIFE and can't shake it.

I don't need to do you to do my work because I (unlike you) have already read the breakdown on who bent the truth and how much. Also, I read the ones on the left of middle press like CBS, MSNBC, so as to get a different view. So of course I'm going to criticize you when you dig up a blatantly biased site. Go use FactCheck.org. They are nonpartisan and give a good view of BOTH sides lies.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: ironic on 10/04/2012 22:56:30 MDT Print View

2220

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: ironic on 10/04/2012 23:44:53 MDT Print View

factcheck.org - I agree, fairly objective:

■Obama accused Romney of proposing a $5 trillion tax cut. Not true. Romney proposes to offset his rate cuts and promises he won’t add to the deficit.

disagree with factcheck - Romney did propose $5 trillion tax cut - and also $5 trillion offsets - analysis says it will be difficult to come up with that but Romney just says trust me but no details

■Romney again promised to “not reduce the taxes paid by high-income Americans” and also to “lower taxes on middle-income families,” but didn’t say how he could possibly accomplish that without also increasing the deficit.
■Obama oversold his health care law, claiming that health care premiums have “gone up slower than any time in the last 50 years.” That’s true of health care spending, but not premiums. And the health care law had little to do with the slowdown in overall spending.

okay - good point - Obama should have said "costs" not "premiums" - and the president always gets blamed and given credit for stuff he has no effect over

■Romney claimed a new board established by the Affordable Care Act is “going to tell people ultimately what kind of treatments they can have.” Not true. The board only recommends cost-saving measures for Medicare, and is legally forbidden to ration care or reduce benefits.
■Obama said 5 million private-sector jobs had been created in the past 30 months. Perhaps so, but that counts jobs that the Bureau of Labor Statistics won’t add to the official monthly tallies until next year. For now, the official tally is a bit over 4.6 million.

4.6 million, 5 million, whatever... is that all they can come up with?

■Romney accused Obama of doubling the federal deficit. Not true. The annual deficit was already running at $1.2 trillion when Obama took office.
■Obama again said he’d raise taxes on upper-income persons only to the “rates that we had when Bill Clinton was president.” Actually, many high-income persons would pay more than they did then, because of new taxes in Obama’s health care law.

factcheck just agreed with Obama - plus the health care tax but Obama wasn't talking about that - I wonder how much that is

■Romney claimed that middle-income Americans have “seen their income come down by $4,300.” That’s too high. Census figures show the decline in median household income during Obama’s first three years was $2,492, even after adjusting for inflation.
■Obama again touted his “$4 trillion” deficit reduction plan, which includes $1 trillion from winding down wars that are coming to an end in any event.

Why shouldn't the deficit reduction include what's saved from winding down the wars - that's a big part of why we have a deficit

Seems like factcheck is bending over backwards trying to find Obama "lies"

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Wow on 10/05/2012 01:12:48 MDT Print View

Stop spinning. You pulled bullet points and ignored the larger breakdown. They explain several of the things you just don't like.

For example obamas 5 trillion tax cut allegation. Obamas side is extrapolating over 10 years. Romney's side and several think tanks disagree with the calculation.

I could elaborate but ill let people read on their own.



I will agree that Romney was more exposed for criticism though. Of course he would be because he actually said something other than meaningless blather like the other guy.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Wow on 10/05/2012 07:37:57 MDT Print View

"For example obamas 5 trillion tax cut allegation. Obamas side is extrapolating over 10 years. Romney's side and several think tanks disagree with the calculation."

factcheck agreed with 5 trillion - you're the one that identified factcheck as objective

factcheck just objected that Obama didn't mention that there were also 5 trillion of offsets

that's not lieing, and it's not even ommision - presumably Obama was going to debate the offsets which just isn't possible. Romney just denied that he ever proposed 5 trillion of tax cuts which factcheck said was a lie.


"I will agree that Romney was more exposed for criticism though."

Ah ha - we agree again - Romney is a liar - but you want to sugar coat it


"Of course he would be because he actually said something other than meaningless blather like the other guy."

Romney is much less specific. And he changes from day to day as he thinks will get him elected.

And come one, you can say it, "President Obama" : )


Actually, you have said some reasonable things on this thread, as opposed to the Republicans who define "truth" as whatever they think will get them elected. I don't know why you have blinded yourself to this. You're close to admitting it though...

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Wow on 10/05/2012 07:59:12 MDT Print View

No factcheck agreed that if you follow obamas math you can get to 5 trillion


Romney proposed about. 486 billion I think. By obamas fuzzy thinking he could have argued it was 20 trillion if he spread it over 40 years! Fact check explained this in detail below the simple bullet points. And Romney doesn't even agree with that number as his side feels revenues will increase.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Wow on 10/05/2012 08:25:32 MDT Print View

10 years seems to be a common period to project federal expenses - Rs, Ds, CBO,... do this

Romney said he's going to cut taxes 20%. It's a pretty straightforward calculation that in 10 years there'll be about $25 Trillion of taxes - 20% is $5 trillion - this is just a rough calculation

Arguing that this isn't calculated correctly is just distraction from the fact that Romney will say anything to get elected.

Romney says he has a secret plan to offset this with loophole elimination but won't tell us any details

That's like Nixon's secret plan to end the Vietnam war - just B.S. to get elected

I see it now - Romney will cut taxes 20%, have "a plan" to cut loopholes by the same amount but they'll never agree on it so the only thing that gets passed is the cuts.

Then they'll say "we're broke! we have to eliminate social security and medicare"

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Romney/Ryan on 10/05/2012 10:21:41 MDT Print View

For your viewing pleasure, and a bit of a laugh.

Not getting into the debates. Carry on!

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Lying? on 10/05/2012 10:33:14 MDT Print View

Jerry

I saw 5 minutes of the debate and you sound like Barrak Hussein himself. Romney said he has a general plan, an outline if you will, ex., to cut taxes and simplify some deductions, to simplify the tax code, to be ironed out by congress, jacked with and voted on. The appointed one states: He's being secret, he doesn't have a plan, he won't tell us how he's going to do it, what's he hiding, whats up his sleeve, we should be scared of the unknown, blah blah blah. Really? I was 4 minutes into it and I don't know how many times he repeated himself. Debate default failure. Sad too that a guy that has been on the job, in the hot seat for almost four years, is given a poor grade due to lack of prep time? His handicap is improving however.

You understand too, that a tax rate can be reduced and revenues to the fed can actually increase, yes? Like a business can reduce it's prices but ACTUALLY increase profits. Yes?
It can actually happen, it's been done before, and that kinda makes it not a lie. Once again, TURN OFF PMSNBC, and quit repeating the "squirrel is tingling my leg" guy or the "mad at the world" woman(?), Rachel Maddow. Do a truth check on that hussie for grins. :-)

Edited by BFThorp on 10/05/2012 10:38:11 MDT.

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
It can be different on 10/05/2012 12:19:13 MDT Print View

Wake up America.
A choice between two evils is no choice. Your country was founded on freedom foe all men. Not a plaything for the rich.
brothers and sisters

Edited by MikefaeDundee on 10/05/2012 12:23:00 MDT.

spelt the enigmatic
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
uck on 10/05/2012 13:08:40 MDT Print View

PMSNBC...woman(?), Rachel Maddow.

Have a ball arguing over who lied and how much, but that's just odious.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Really? on 10/05/2012 13:30:59 MDT Print View

" but that's just odious."

Seriously. Really? At least cut and paste the paragraph. BTW, I don't really think Mathews had a squirrel run up his leg. Be my guest to monitor some of the serious name calling. Lighten up on the jokes and I won't guess which side of the fence you're on.

spelt the enigmatic
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Really? on 10/05/2012 17:13:45 MDT Print View

Yes seriously, yes really. Why would I post the paragraph when a few words make your attitude towards insufficiently feminine women and insufficiently manly news coverage clear? I don't care what you call each other but those "jokes" are sexist and juvenile.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Lying? on 10/05/2012 17:59:57 MDT Print View

Fred

You watch Rachel Maddow? Isn't she great? I first listened to her on radio.

One way lowering taxes can raise revenues is to temporarily lower capital gains rates. People will quickly sell to take advantage of it and pay lower tax. So you'll get more revenue in the short term but you're poaching future tax revenue.

Better to quit all this B.S. and just tax all income the same and leave rates the same.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Tax be gone on 10/05/2012 18:31:05 MDT Print View

No C corp tax. That would be gooder. :)

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
MSNBC on 10/05/2012 18:35:27 MDT Print View

I was just watching this video of Republican leaders like all the ones running for president nomination, trashing Obama for having unemployment rate greater than 8%

Now I see why they're so p...ed tha the unemployment rate is 7.8%

I guess they'll start supporting Obama now

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
UE on 10/05/2012 19:00:13 MDT Print View

7.8 % using 8 - 10 % worth of exemptions.
Maddow rarely lets a fact get in the way.

Edited by BFThorp on 10/05/2012 20:40:40 MDT.

Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - M

Locale: Southeast
Re: Banking on 10/05/2012 20:49:45 MDT Print View

"J this is so far off base that I can't even begin to address it. Banks in mainstream America try to lend money to borrowers that are able to repay. This is how they make their money which in turn rewards the investors for risking their capital. Without getting into regulations, most of the tightening of credit was due to the fubared policies and oversight of congress and the lack of confidence in the economy."

This was not my experience in 2008-2009. Policy and congressional oversight did not cause the tightening of credit unfortunately. They work much too slow compared to market panic. Background: The mortgage company I work for is owned by Berkshire Hathaway, or Warren Buffett for those who don't follow business closely. Uncle Warren borrows money on the open market at X%, and then loans it to us so that we can create consumer loans at Y%.

In late 2008, when Lehman crashed, AIG, etc, Berkshire went to the market and tried to borrow $1 billion for my company, but had ZERO takers. Keep in mind Berkshire had nearly $40 BILLION in cash on their balance sheet and a AAA credit rating. Outside of the US Govt who can literally create money, is there another entity more credit worthy than Berkshire? Well, maybe General Electric. Wait a minute - they also tried to borrow in 2008 and couldn't. So, BRK loaned them $3 billion at 10% interest. 10% is a huge yield for that size of loan to a company like GE. Ultimately, BRK had to dip into their cash reserves so we could continue to lend. The moral of the story - markets were completely frozen and it happened nearly overnight.

What most people don't realize is that the Gov't bailed out thousands of US banks. Large and small. Imagine if 500 banks failed in a week's time and what the repercussions would be. And another 500. And another 500. Yeah, I'm glad we avoided that.


Ryan

Edited by ViolentGreen on 10/05/2012 21:03:00 MDT.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: MSNBC on 10/06/2012 12:36:41 MDT Print View

Big wake up call is coming the next two weeks. Corporate earnings projections are looking terrible. 80 out 103 (78%) of S&P 500 companies are already forecasting they are going to miss expectations. The highest negative outlook since 2006. China growth is slowing down, European crisis continues and companies have cut all the fat. This economy is not recovering and our administration doesn't have a clue. They are bragging about 7.8% unemployment, how they are going to stick it too the rich for a trillion in taxes and how they have to continue spending over a trillion a year more than we collect. I thought all this debt speeding was suppose to jumpstart the economy and grow the GDP. And let's continue ignoring the fiscal cliff approach at year end. Nobody want's to discuss on either side because we are in election season. We need to vote everyone out of office and turn the whole thing upside down. Voters have to take a stand.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/06/2012 13:06:35 MDT Print View

"Nobody want's to discuss on either side because we are in election season. We need to vote everyone out of office and turn the whole thing upside down. Voters have to take a stand."

I agree with your frustration

If you vote everyone out, well, there are some good people there, or at least some people that would like to be good. And if the congress people are all replaced with new people, the lobbyists may actually have more power because they're the ones that know how to get anything done.

Maybe the prescription is to prohibit political contributions (bribes) or at least make public the contributors.

Even if someone wants to do good, they know that if they p... off the political contributors, then there will be a huge force against them at the next election

Two years ago, after the election, they resolved that fiscal cliff, will probably be the same this time.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Credit on 10/06/2012 16:52:14 MDT Print View

"This was not my experience in 2008-2009. Policy and congressional oversight did not cause the tightening of credit unfortunately."

I wasn't implying that credit tightened because of direct policy, but rather the fallout of policies and oversight prior, which created the uncertainty in the market. The snowball was set in motion long before 2008. Healthy banks were handed money left and right to loan out after the writing was already on the wall.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/06/2012 17:30:37 MDT Print View

Maybe the prescription is to prohibit political contributions (bribes) or at least make public the contributors.

Jerry, I agree, 100%. Politicians should be beholden to all those they govern, not just their donors. This would make it easier for them to remember that.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/06/2012 17:45:18 MDT Print View

"how they are going to stick it too the rich for a trillion in taxes"

This is not so much an issue of closing the deficit, but it would help

It's an issue that all people should pay their fair share, not bribe the politicians to lower their taxes

A couple charts from wikipedia

The highest income people have been paying progressively less tax, especially since 1980:
highincome

And corporate taxes and excise taxes (estate and gift) have been going down, payroll going up. Payroll is only paid up to $108,000 so super rich pay almost zero as percent of their income:
fedreceipts

And effective corporate tax rate:
corpeff

Dirk Rabdau
(dirk9827) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Romney Energy Policy on 10/06/2012 22:49:06 MDT Print View

How do people feel about the Environmental positions of either candidate, especially in regards to public lands management? I read Romney's position papers with some interest, and his Energy policy leaves the door open to interpretation.

Specifically:

"Empower states to control onshore energy development
States will be empowered to control all forms of energy production on all lands within their borders, excluding only those that are specifically designated off-limits. Federal agencies will certify, but the states will lead."

By off-limits, that would pertain to wilderness areas and national parks and refuge areas, of course. But it leaves a large swath of lands (more than 500 million acres) under the purview of the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management subject and Fish and Wildlife Service at first blush, to the whims of states.

I am uncertain how his idea would be implemented. It would seem very difficult to have, on one hand, a federal system for managing lands superseded by policies of individual states.

This could create very contentious issues in several western states where the majority of public lands are located. The president nominates members of his cabinet, including the Department of the Interior.

Romney positions have evolved considerably since his term as governor of Massachusetts. His positions towards environmental stewardship has gravitated from a fairly environmentally friendly stance to one that closely mirrors Republican positions (pro-coal, eager to revamp clean water/clean air acts, supportive of fracking and generally not to eager to address emissions.)

Obviously, these issues, as backpackers, affect all of us (just as does the economy).

Dirk

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 07:52:42 MDT Print View

Jerry you and I can post charts all day long, but that is not my point.

The point is. I find it very troubling that the current administration is bragging about taxing the wealthy for a trillion dollars. Why doesn't this bother people? I'm of the opinion that the federal govt is not just entitled to whatever they want. I think they have a responsibility to be good stewards with everyones tax dollars. Sure we need tax law changes, but we also need to stop spending money we don't have.

Brad

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 09:07:14 MDT Print View

But the point of the charts is that the super wealthy and big corporations aren't paying their fair share.

It's not that we should punish people for being wealthy or that we're envious.

Listening to people talking about it, I hear "fair taxation", not "punishing those evil rich people" (unless you're listening to Republicans)


And we had a balanced budget during Clinton, then the Republicans with some support of the Democrats voted in all these programs creating a huge deficit, and now they say "we're broke! we have to cut every program that benefits the middle class!"

This is a strategy the've planned for a long time


Now if you want to look at social security and medicare and notice that it takes 50% of the federal budget and they're growing, maybe we need a reasoned discussion, like maybe we should not let them increase as a percent of federal budget. But that's not what the Republicans are doing, they've never liked these and wanted to eliminate them. And the Democrats won't talk about it for fear of angering recipients.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 09:34:55 MDT Print View

Who decides fair share? We are not talking about wealthy (defined as those making over 250k per year) paying a trillion more and giving the benefit to lower class, middle class or small businesses. We are talking about the federal government taking another trillion in tax dollars to SPEND!!! Seems that if the wealthy are not paying their fair share the rest are paying too much. BTW a lot of democrats disagree withe this tax hike because they understand the impact on the economy.

BTW this tax increase doesn't balance the budget, so the deficit will continue to raise. When are they going to talk about stopping the madness.

Brad

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 09:53:07 MDT Print View

I agree we have to stop deficit:

Get rid of the tax cuts that were never paid for - especially lower tax for capital gain

Stop the two wars. It worries me that liberals say we should spend these savings but since it was never paid for, it should go to deficit.

Pay for medicare part D for prescriptions - Obamacare has fixed this some, but we need to do more

Get the economy going again


Increasing capital gains tax will not have a negative effect on economy. There have been many periods without this that were economically healthy, like the 1990s. Corporations have large cash holdings but there's nothing to spend it on. It's not a shortage of capital that's the problem, it's demand.

Middle class tax cut would spur demand, but that's a short term kludge.

We have to bring back jobs to U.S. with sensible trade policy.

We need to get more trained people by subsidizing education more. People shouldn't have to borrow $50,000 to get a college education.

Democrats are talking about this some, but not much. Republicans are totally opposed.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 13:22:24 MDT Print View

Capital gains. Maybe/maybe not. Don't think anyone knows for sure and comparing 2012 economy to 1990's economy doesn't make a lot of sense. Things are just so drastically different. Could go either way in my opinion.

Totally disagree with subsidizing education. The problem with college education is people do not view it as an investment in their future career. Big disconnect with businesses and higher education. My oldest son started college this year. I remember sitting through the parent orientation and having an administrator talk about how important it was for the students to take a lot of different courses and explore. I could see all the parents staring at him like he was the biggest idiot in the room. All the parents are thinking about is the cost and student getting a job. Colleges are focused on selling education and financing it for you. They don't benefit by having you consider it an investment or helping you save money. I've said many times before cutout the BS classes and you could get a 4 yr degree in 3 yrs. This has two benefits: cuts the cost for everyone by 25% and opens more slots for others students. And it doesn't cost the taxpayer any more

Bringing jobs back to the US starts with the consumer and not the company. You can't complain about jobs going overseas and then run down to walmart and buy the cheapest good from China.

I like your approach to paying for things before spending (ie wars, capital gains, Part D). To bad Obama doesn't take your approach. He just overspends a trillion a year the last 4 years.

Brad

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 14:25:14 MDT Print View

I've worked at a number of companies that hired a bunch of engineers and physicists and technicians and... You pretty much have to have a PHD, BS, or 2 year degree to get hired. And people I've talked to recently say they're still looking for well trained people. We need more, educated people.

In 1970s, I had to borrow $3,000 to get BS which created all the high tech of the 1990s. Today it's more like $50,000. We should go back to what worked after WWII up to the 1970s, which produced all the economic progress.

I guess we'll have to agree to disagree.

"Too bad Obama doesn't take your approach"

I disagree

Obamacare is a partial fix to the Medicare part D deficit

We're not totally out of Iraq, but spending is much less and declining with time.

There's at least a plan to get out of Afganistan.

I wish we'de get out quicker but I'm not privy to inside information that might change my mind.

Obama has tried to get rid of the unpaid for tax cuts.

Obama has tried to push through some programs to help the economy.

It's unreasonable to expect Obama to fix everything in 4 years.

When the Republicans #1 priority is to get Obama un-elected and will do anything to make this so, it's hard to blame Obama for not getting bipartisan solutions.

It's funny, Romney said that if he gets elected, unlike Obama, he'll sit down with Republican and Democratic leaders and come up with bi-partisan solutions. That's funny, I remember Obama with Republican leaders. They came up with some solutions. When Boehner showed the agreement to "tea-party" people they refused to go along and the deal collapsed.

Republcians say the deal was killed because Democrats insisted on more taxes, but again, it's not that Obama didn't sit down with leaders and come up with bipartisan compromise.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 16:31:46 MDT Print View

I totally agree that the world has become too degree focused. Many, many jobs don't require advanced degrees, yet employers have come to expect it. A lot of people can't get jobs packing grocery shelves anymore without a 'degree' in something. How much of this is successful marketing on the part of institutions supplying these degrees?

I also agree that bi-partisan agreements seem remote when the major parties are so bent on discrediting eachother. If a party doesn't have control of both houses, it becomes a bit of a deadlock, and when they do control both houses, it becomes a juggernaut. Why not try a multi-partisan approach to government??

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 16:38:49 MDT Print View

"Why not try a multi-partisan approach to government??"

We barely have the attention span for two candidates......

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 19:04:11 MDT Print View

Jerry I'm not sure we are disagreeing about education cost. I think it is outrageous and not required. I think we differ on the approach. You are suggesting the govt help offset the cost. I'm saying lower the cost. Lower the cost by eliminating all the extra courses that are not applicable to the degree and just focus on the requirements. This would easily reduce the cost by 1 yr or 25%. This saves the student and taxpayer. The college loses the revenue, but they can offset by admitting more students since it doesn't take as long.

We have had a shortage in technical resources for many years. Why do you think the H1B visas are so popular. I have used job postings for technical resources in the past and 100% of the responses are foreign candidates. I was shocked that I couldn't get anyone to apply that was a US Citizen. However the void surely hasn't been filled over the past 20 years and giving people assistance isn't going to help attract more candidates.

Yeah we can just disagree on the rest. I think both parties are screwed up.

Brad

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 19:05:56 MDT Print View

"I totally agree that the world has become too degree focused. Many, many jobs don't require advanced degrees, yet employers have come to expect it. A lot of people can't get jobs packing grocery shelves anymore without a 'degree' in something. How much of this is successful marketing on the part of institutions supplying these degrees? "

Bingo we have a winner. Lynn you are so right. Institutions have become great marketers and financiers over the last 20 years.

Brad

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 19:39:53 MDT Print View

I went to a school that has about the least humanities classes required of any school in the U.S. - Caltech. One of my humanitities classes was "the philosophy of mathematics".

Yet, I think it's a good thing for technical people to take classes besides just technical subjects whichs makes less than 4 years more difficult. There's more than just solving physics or engineering problems to running a business and living a life.

And a lot of students screw up a little, or change their major, and require the full 4 years. Or more.

But I agree, we should push back and try to reduce the costs of getting an education. Maybe more important is to coordinate with businesses that want to hire people to make sure we're training people in the right areas.

Sometimes businesses prefer H1B people because they'll work for less and complain less.

I agree, both parties are screwed up, yet we have to vote for one or the other. Maybe more important than voting is to call your congressmen and tell them what you want them to do.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 19:51:59 MDT Print View

"I agree, both parties are screwed up, yet we have to vote for one or the other."

And here, as I have before, I'll respectfully disagree. As long as we continue to believe this, nothing will ever change.

Brad Fisher
(wufpackfn)

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Re: MSNBC on 10/08/2012 20:18:35 MDT Print View

"But I agree, we should push back and try to reduce the costs of getting an education. Maybe more important is to coordinate with businesses that want to hire people to make sure we're training people in the right areas."

Right on. I find it odd that they don't partner well together.

"Sometimes businesses prefer H1B people because they'll work for less and complain less."

Not been my experience. The communication barriers far outweigh these benefits. Offshoring has a huge cost savings, but i few companies have a good experience.

You really think me calling my congressman is going to have any impact? Special interest groups have both parties tied up.

I think the only way to get their attention is to vote everyone out of office. Do that for a few elections and people will start listening.

Brad

James Castleberry
(Winterland76)
Question(s) for Brad and Jerry on 10/08/2012 21:29:54 MDT Print View

Do either of you care about NDAA or consider habeas corpus to be important? Puzzles me why no one is raising this as an election issue. Personally, I would want to vote for a candidate who supports habeas corpus, but I'm kinda weird.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Well on 10/08/2012 22:05:11 MDT Print View

I find it unbelievable that nobody is making a bigger fuss about our ambassador being murdered and drug through the streets.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Well on 10/08/2012 23:22:26 MDT Print View

and do you find it unbelievable, Michael, that no one isn't making a bigger fuss about "fast and furious", the fabricated 7.8% unemployment report, Obama's birth certificate, and "the Donald's" hair? : )

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Well on 10/08/2012 23:55:09 MDT Print View

I don't consider an attack on our nation a joking matter Jerry. And attacking an ambassador is just that.

So yeah, I take exception to drawing a comparison to hair and find one just a wee bit worse. By hey that's just me.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Well on 10/09/2012 08:00:53 MDT Print View

I don't consider attacking the president during a crisis to take political advantage a joking matter, like Romney did.

We should gather round, temporarily (even for just a day or two) and provide united front against enemies.

Like we did after 9/11.

In the first hours after a crisis, the facts are fluid. Rash actions can make things worse. I'm worried that Romney would act rashly just to show what a tough guy he is. I prefer Obama's cool, reasoned reaction.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Well on 10/09/2012 08:18:44 MDT Print View

I like how on that video, after the 47% comment, Romney said that it's hopeless to find a solution to Isreal/Palestine problem and we shouldn't worry about it.

Later, he determined that wasn't a good answer, so he says that an Isreal/Palestine solution is important to work on.

He will say or do anything to get elected.

It's impossible to know what he really thinks or will do.

Same with the 47% comment. When there was a lot of push-back, he said it was stated "inelegantly". When the criticisms continued, he changed it to "he was completely wrong".

I've never seen such a phony, plastic politician, which is saying something because politicians are so phony and plastic.

I can't believe anyone takes him seriously.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Well on 10/09/2012 08:23:06 MDT Print View

"I prefer Obama's cool, reasoned reaction."

Especially when HE killed Bin Laden.

He hasn't faced a true crisis yet and has not been tested.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well on 10/09/2012 09:11:16 MDT Print View

The other one he got was Kadafi

That guy got away with killing Americans for years. Many "tough guy" presidents let him be. Obama got justice.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Haha on 10/09/2012 09:25:14 MDT Print View

We were doing deals with Libya right up until the uprising. Just because Obama decided we could help one side a bit is hardly "getting" anybody.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well on 10/09/2012 09:26:36 MDT Print View

And obamas lack of response is our ambassadors death is weak. Romney should go after him. And for pulling the security for the guy.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Haha on 10/09/2012 09:28:32 MDT Print View

Ask Kadafi if "he's got"

Oh, you can't...

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well on 10/09/2012 09:31:12 MDT Print View

"And obamas lack of response is our ambassadors death is weak. Romney should go after him. And for pulling the security for the guy."

Do you mean that if Romney did more "tough guy talk" he'd be more likely to get elected?

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well on 10/09/2012 09:39:55 MDT Print View

"The other one he got was Kadafi"

No he didn't. Who 'got' him were the insurgents. He had no 'kill' order on this.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Well on 10/09/2012 10:01:42 MDT Print View

"No he didn't. Who 'got' him were the insurgents. He had no 'kill' order on this."

True enough

Obama supported insurgents that killed Kadafi

And what happened was not good, should have been tried in a court,...

It's better for the local people to "get him" than have the U.S. military do it

But regardless of all that, Kadafi is now gone, and it happened during Obama's watch, not during all the "tough guy's" watch

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Haha on 10/09/2012 12:04:22 MDT Print View

Obama doesn't get any credit for kadafi. We were just about to sell him military equipment right before the overthrow. Doesn't sound like he got him at all. Sounds like he was helping him.

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Got on 10/09/2012 12:24:46 MDT Print View

Why do folk feel the need to go around the world 'getting' folk?

Edited by MikefaeDundee on 10/09/2012 12:25:17 MDT.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Duh on 10/09/2012 12:49:13 MDT Print View

Cause they are wanting and planning to get us?

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Duh on 10/09/2012 13:22:05 MDT Print View

That should surely mean Wall Street is next.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Education on 10/09/2012 15:03:22 MDT Print View

"You are suggesting the govt help offset the cost. I'm saying lower the cost. Lower the cost by eliminating all the extra courses that are not applicable to the degree and just focus on the requirements. This would easily reduce the cost by 1 yr or 25%. This saves the student and taxpayer. The college loses the revenue, but they can offset by admitting more students since it doesn't take as long."

Or maybe a combination?

I got my education for free, though this is no longer the case in this country. But it was a three year degree, initially (to batchelor degree). The only courses I HAD to take were ones relevant to my degree. The life education came from other sources, and I don't see this as a university's role. I also took lots of other courses in the US, as part of my AA at a community college (again free, at least at the time). I don't feel those AA courses made me in any way a better person! In fact, I fond them pretty pathetic, but maybe that depends on the college in the US (you get what you pay for???).

Funny thing was, when I moved to NZ, the NZ university wouldn't recognise any of my US courses, even the non-fluffy ones. Said they didn't know what the courses covered, so couldn't cross-credit them.

Anyway, even now our government subsidises tertiary education, and we are not exactly a wealthy country. We also have a multi-partisan government, even though we are a very small country. At least that way I can vote for who I think will do the best job, without the vote 'counting for nothing'. Seems to me a contry the size of America has plenty of room for other parties to have a say. I find it pretty sad that between Obama and Romney the polls show they have 95% of the vote!

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Rich on 10/09/2012 15:16:22 MDT Print View

"But the point of the charts is that the super wealthy and big corporations aren't paying their fair share."

From the WSJ

In the 1980s, the top 5% averaged 22.6% of income and paid 28.5% of taxes.

In the 1990s, the top 5% averaged 25.3% of income and paid 34.3% of taxes

In the 2000s, the top 5% averaged 28.4% of the income and paid 40.3% of the taxes.


Again, what's fair?




"Get rid of the tax cuts that were never paid for"

This mentality drives me nuts. How do you PAY for a tax cut? This is the kind of thinking that put us in the mess we're in. If revenues decline (it doesn't always BTW), you cut spending. It's our money Jerry. They work for us. When did this concept become foreign to so many in this counrty.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Rich on 10/09/2012 16:26:33 MDT Print View

Fred, what's fair is for everyone to pay the same percentage of their income in taxes, and maybe give lower income people a break and pay less - a lot of the reason they get paid less has to do with past discrimination and if you give people a hand up, a lot of times they can be a lot more successful.

When you earn income, it depends on an infrastructure - military, police, an educated workforce to work at the factory that made that profit,... Taxes on that income pay for this. If you don't pay taxes you're a free-loader - lazy - entitled - etc.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Got on 10/09/2012 18:02:33 MDT Print View

"Why do folk feel the need to go around the world 'getting' folk?"

It's an American thing, Mike. When you lose your moral authority, the only way to persuade people to see things your way, AKA "kiss the ring" is to threaten to "get" them. Occasionally, we have to follow thru. It works. For a while. Then some uppity WOG comes along with a few old artillery shells and some garage door openers, and things start to unravel. To the tune of a trillion dollars up front, and 3 trillion down the road, if you can believe Stiglitz & co. I have the distinct impression that we are feeling a little less inclined to go around "getting" people these days. A few thousand dead and many more thousands maimed in body and soul will do that to a country given enough time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yg_rf2d894k

We're in the process of acquiring the national experience to write our own version of this timeless classic. Stay tuned and keep the faith, Mike. We'll get there eventually. Or die trying. :(