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Platform is rather nebulous in its language and ignores glaring gaps between actions and rhetoric

Much like their Republican colleagues, the Democratic National Party put out a policy called "Moving America Forward", on the eve of their convention in Charlotte, North Carolina. North Carolina is a hotly contested battleground state where Republican challenger Mitt Romney enjoys a slim 4-point lead over the President in current pulls.  Unlike the Republicans' platform, the DNP's platform does not list any specific authors -- but one can assume the President's staff and top members of Congress all had some input into the document.

I. What's This Platform Noise?

The Republican platform was quite interesting in the sense that it ping-ponged between calling for essential a moralistic federalist police state on issues such as internet pornography, and on the opposite extreme called for reducing the size of the federal government and promoting liberty on the net.

By contrast the DNP's platform, as I see it, is a bit different in a sense that much of its problematic material lies less in cognitively dissonant language, but rather in the inconsistencies that go unsaid.

But before we dig in, let us recap what a party platform is.

It is somewhat of a myth to say that America does not have or has never had viable third parties -- President Andrew Johnson, the man who succeeded President Abraham Lincoln -- was effectively a third-party president after publicly renouncing the Democratic Party while in office, while also refusing to join the Republican ranks.

But in all practicality, the nucleus of political power in America today is largely binary.  And today it takes millions of dollars to get elected to office.  2008 marked the first race in which the average "price" of a seat in the House of Representatives passed the $1M USD mark.  The candidate with more money won 9 out of 10 federal races.  Much of that funding comes from the national party, which in turn receives a mixture of money from small donors and hefty special interests.
 
Moving America Forward

Against that backdrop, consider that the RNP's and DNP's platforms are non-binding, yet they do carry substantial weight and pressure.  Candidates who buck the carefully laid out talking points in the platform risk losing funding, and by proxy losing a job opportunity.  Of course there may be some element of pandering to the platform -- so it's not impossible to fathom that either party might adopt a plank (passage) that they have no real intention of enforcing.

II. Preaching v. Practice

President Barack Obama is no stranger to public relations.  Elected on a whirlwind of promises of "reforming" the government, the President disappointed some believers in his message of "hope" when he (or his staff -- in this day and age, it's hard to say which) fell back on the same old pandering to special interests.

But the tech savvy POTUS has been doing his best to put on a glowing spin on his pro-freedom message, taking to Reddit and other outlets to connect with potential voters.

The platform is equal parts boasting about his accomplishments, albeit in vague terms, and making equally vague big-sounding promises.

For example on internet freedom it writes:

The Obama administration has led the world to recognize and defend Internet freedom—the freedom of expression, assembly, and association online for people everywhere—through coalitions of countries and by empowering individuals with innovative technologies. The administration has built partnerships to support an Internet that is secure and reliable and that is respectful of U.S. intellectual property, free flow of information, and privacy. To preserve the Internet as a platform for commerce, debate, learning, and innovation in the 21st century, we successfully negotiated international Internet policymaking principles, support the current multi-stakeholder approach to Internet governance, and oppose the extension of intergovernmental controls over the Internet.

But the Obama administration's track record on internet freedoms has been mixed.  

The President did help block the Orwellian "Stop Online Piracy Act" (SOPA) (H.R. 3261) in the House and "PROTECT IP Act" (PIPA) (S.968) in the Senate after being "reminded" of his "duties" by lobbyist friends. However, he turned around and squeaked through the international Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) [leaked 2010 draft; PDF] -- a treaty, in essence, with similar provisions that was notably not authorized by Congress.

The executive order to obey SOPA was passed last January.   SOPA's opponents have noticed that the President's Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been stepping up domain seizures in months since, in many cases abusing the rights of law-abiding citizens at the behest of big media.

In other words, "successfully negotiated international Internet policymaking principles" in reality means something like "brokered back-door treaties behind the back of Congress and the public, to stroke big media".

The truly problematic thing about ACTA is that it is unconstitutional -- Europe is treating it as a binding treaty.  And the U.S. Senate must approve all binding treaties according to the Constitution:  

He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur...

But Obama is calling it an "agreement" to escape having to obtain Senate approval -- a move that would risk highlighting the issue before a relatively ignorant public who believes (by and large) that the President is opposed to such Orwellian measures.

In short, the administration's true definition of freedom isn't so free.  Essentially it involves promoting freedom when it's convenient, but throwing it under the bus when well-heeled lobbyists wish otherwise.

Unlike the Republicans, the DNP does not appear intent on enforcing federal obscenity laws, which according to the most recent Supreme Court rulings on the topic should ban most forms of pornography.  Of course, the DNP also is making no effort to repeal these questionable laws, so it's not wholly part of the solution, either, when it comes to freeing Americans from the kind of moralistic censorship that federal law calls for (albeit, which is also currently goes unenforced.

In fact Democrats have been a key proponent in past moralistic "anti-obscenity" pushes such as Tipper Gore's famous effort to block Dead Kennedys musician Jello Biafra's Constitution right to free speech:


For that reason it's hard to take all of the Obama camp's proclamations of internet "freedom" and anti-censorship at face value considering the past actions of the administration and past actions of the party.

III. Taxation: DNP is Full of Nebulous Promises

Another section where nebulous language abounds is in the portion discussing taxation -- something that intimately affects the tech industry (see the $3B USD taxpayer-funded payout to General Electric Comp. (GE) on a year when the company turned a $14B USD profit) and exacerbates the problem of lobbyist special interests.  A recent University of Kansas School of Business study [PDF] found that $1 given to a federal politician was worth $243 USD of tax breaks, if you contributed over $1M USD.

The DNP states:

We see an America with greater economic security and opportunity, driven by education, energy, innovation and infrastructure, and a tax code that helps to create American jobs and bring down the debt in a balanced way. We believe in deficit reduction not by placing the burden on the middle class and the poor, but by cutting out programs we can't afford and asking the wealthiest to again contribute their fair share.

...we helped American families who are working multiple jobs and struggling to pay the bills save a little extra money through tax cuts, lower health care costs, and affordable student loans.

His Recovery Act represented the largest education investment since President Johnson, the largest infrastructure investment since President Eisenhower, the single largest clean energy investment ever, and the broadest tax cut in American history.

That's why President Obama and the Democratic Party have cut taxes on American workers and businesses and made sweeping reforms to the unemployment system to help get people back to work.

In other words, like the RNP, the DNP claims it's all about cutting taxes.  But the problem lies in the ambiguity (similar to that of the RNP platform).  The reality of the situation is that neither party supports a zero-exceptions flat tax.

Until that kind of policy takes hold, the race for the presidency will essentially be a spending game for corporate lobbyists to try to fund the winner, and in exchange receive favors in the tax code.

Was the Recovery Act the "single largest clean energy investment" (by the government) "ever"?  Absolutely.  But the question is whether the government should be funneling grant money to people who paid for their candidate to get elected.

As mentioned above, 9 out of 10 times in Congressional elections the candidate with more money wins.  And as long as tax exemptions, credits, grants, or any other form of tax breaks can be inserted into legislation -- as long as taxation is treated as an arbitrary nebulous sliding scale controlled by Congress and the White House -- invariably taxation will favor those with lobbying influence, when all is said and done.


The DNP adds in the twist of attacking the "wealthy", but to be real most of these people will simply do what Mitt Romney does if taxes are raised -- shelter their income off shores.  Meanwhile the DNP is perfectly happy to hand out grants and tax holidays to big wealth investors who they pretend to admonish (see Solyndra, EnerDel, General Electric, et al.) via inconsistent and arbitrary corporate taxation.

Obama bribery wide
President Obama is beating Romney in the special interest cash race.
[Image Source: Politically Incorrect]

In many ways the two parties' platforms, while differing on key moralistic issues, offer remarkable similarities when it comes to the economy.  Both parties support nebulous modifications to an already nebulous tax code that can and is actively exploited by special interests.

At the same time both parties promise (to quote the DNP) "tough spending cuts", but both sides are a bit vague as to exactly what is getting cut.  And both sides have essentially have non-verbally acknowledged that they will deficit spend if elected (though you won't find this in either platform).  Thus looking at the hard numbers both candidates share a similar hope for balancing the budget -- that wild GDP growth will raise tax revenue at current collection rates and allow the spend-thrift federal body to break-even.

The DNP platform arguably has more in common with the RNP platform than either side would be comfortable to admit.  Substitute a select few nebulous talking points and flip on a few moral issues and one side is essentially looking at the other's reflection in their mirror.

Ron Paul
Ron Paul argued last night that both parties are essentially full of the same hollow promises.
[Image Source: NBC]

Thus perhaps it's best to close with the words of Ron Paul on the Jay Leno Show last night, "Democracy isn't all that healthy in this country because if you're in a third party... you don't get in the debates... And if you ever come to the conclusion -- heaven forbid -- that the two parties aren't all that different, then what is left really?"

Source: Democratic National Party



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By JasonMick (blog) on 9/5/2012 5:24:35 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
How is forcing them to pay or go to jail asking them? I don't understand how they can use that language. It's not like the tax hikes they want are going to be optional.
It's just weasel words to obfuscate the fact that both sides funnel tax breaks to whoever pays their way into office.

9 times out of 10, the Congressional candidate who gets more money wins.

The Democrats love to conjure up the image of the "evil rich" to rile up their base, but in reality their actions -- funneling SMBs and individual taxpayers wealth to corporate special interests -- is evident. The rhetoric is similar to how the Republicans throw in "right to life" to pander to their base, even though abortion is legal pretty much everywhere in the U.S. and has been for a long time (the Supreme Court long ago made the issue clear on that point). Both parties especially love to say how their plan will lead to huge gains for "small business owners".

They key is to keep the rhetoric on both sides of the aisle ambiguous enough to dupe the accepting masses into ignoring the fact that both parties have been busily funneling trillions in U.S. taxpayer money to special interests over the last couple decades.

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_zeoMD3KyiYM/TOH6gdPVisI/...

If you notice, since Ford/Nixon (Republicans) every single President has pushed spending as % of GDP higher, except for Clinton. Arguably Clinton/Ford/Nixon were the only Presidents in the last four decades to give a modest attempt at balancing the budget.

Neither side wants a flat tax, as it makes it oh so hard to funnel money to the people that pay for them to get elected.


By RufusM on 9/5/2012 5:38:46 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
9 times out of 10, the Congressional candidate who gets more money wins.


This statement (or ones like this) get tossed around a lot, but don't confuse this with cause and effect. It's nothing more than a correlation; not cause and effect. There's more to elections than just spending money.

DT won't let me post the link, but just Google "does money really buy elections".


By JasonMick (blog) on 9/5/2012 6:01:28 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
They also cannot run a platform successfully based on their last 4 years of performance. Because there's nothing really positive there that people would want to vote for. Certainly not economically. Who would vote for 4 more years of this if one was truly objective?
The paper being tossed around in recent commentary is this:

http://pricetheory.uchicago.edu/levitt/Papers/Levi...

While it offers some interesting observations I would raise two points:
1. It's outdated -- today the average cost of running for Congress has increased 6 times to where the average House seat "costs" over $1M USD per election.

http://www.opensecrets.org/bigpicture/index.php

2. Levitt arguably is too quick to dismiss the potential causation.

.........................................

From a rational, up-to-date perspective...

I agree, that in some types of races -- e.g. a region with either a hard-line Republican or hard-line Democrat voting base, money can be a non-factor.

But the fact is that the tipping point of minority vs. majority in the House and Senate is often decided by a few battleground states, counties, and you start to realize that even buying Levitt's claim -- 2x spending for 1 percent increase in polls -- and you start to see how out-fundraising the rival can put you in control of the federal government.

Plus, I would wager that % polling return has increased since 1994. Today it could easily be 5-10% -- enough to win in a battleground state.

You will see candidates in primaries losing races in which they spent more. But to get to be a front-runner in a primary race you have to already have worked your way to an expensive high-profile public office. e.g. Perry and Romney work governors, Obama was a Senator, Hillary Clinton was a Senator, etc.

And, again, those races are oft decided by campaign dollars, as shown by the 9 out of 10 figure.

Analysts are attempting to debunk a 2008 figure with 1994 information, when the whole point is that the correlation has risen dramatically since the 1990s.


By RufusM on 9/6/2012 2:53:58 PM , Rating: 2
All great points. For close races I can see that dollars are definitely a factor.

An underlying point is that the dollars involved are becoming exorbitant; averaging one million dollars per candidate for a House seat.


By TSS on 9/5/2012 6:14:13 PM , Rating: 1
Well money buys ads, ads raise awareness and awareness is what wins you elections.

Soooo... Yeah money buys elections. It can be limited, sure, through laws and regulations. But considering how open this election is about superpac's and donating money, as well as the amounts involved....

I'm pretty sure at this stage we can definitly say elections are bought. I'm not willing to say the person with the most money will win. But even if they didn't, their opponent used so much money as well that you might as well consider it bought anyway.


By Solandri on 9/5/2012 6:34:12 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
If you notice, since Ford/Nixon (Republicans) every single President has pushed spending as % of GDP higher, except for Clinton.

Clinton's spending cuts have more to do with the Republicans sweeping into control of the House and Senate in 1994. They ran on a strong deficit-cutting agenda. Though to his credit, Clinton played along and didn't do anything asinine like veto the budget for having too many cuts (when it was still running a deficit).

And personally I think a chart of spending vs revenue is much more revealing than deficits or debt. Spending is what's under the control of the Congress and President. Revenue is partially a function of the health of the economy. Deficit = revenue - spending.
http://www.heritage.org/federalbudget/charts/2012/...

One of the surprises which pop out when you do this is that Bush Jr's average spending over 8 years was actually lower than Clinton's 8 years. The huge debt amassed under Bush was almost entirely due to revenue shortfalls (poor economy, 9/11, and his tax cuts). Paying for two wars didn't help, but they didn't spike spending above historical norms as some have theorized.


By Azethoth on 9/6/2012 4:14:54 PM , Rating: 3
"The huge debt amassed under Bush was almost entirely due to unfunded spending (2 wars, medicare D, and his tax cuts)."

There, I fixed it for you.


By knutjb on 9/6/2012 11:23:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
There, I fixed it for you.
Uh, no...
quote:
"The huge debt amassed under Bush was almost entirely due to unfunded spending (2 wars, medicare D, and his tax cuts)."


All of which, while too much, was less in 8 years then what Obama has blown in 4. Also, GB had a recession at the beginning of his term for which the Dems cried you own it and 9/11 was about a $3 trillion hit to the economy. But only sympathy for Obama because it was worse than expected? I want a competent LEADER, we don't have one at this time.

Tax cuts and debt is a false analogy. When tax rates have been cut REVENUES go up. Hearing the President tonight he views your money as what he thinks you should have after the government takes what it deems is enough to give it away so some bureaucrat can be your brothers keeper. Sucks to be his brother though.

Both wars cost less than than Obama's Reinvestment act. Do be careful to separate the entire military budget and the actual cost of the wars.


By nick2000 on 9/6/2012 11:50:48 PM , Rating: 2
tax cut=revenue cut... so.. No they don't go up.
This would only possibly work if taxes were so high that they impede the economy but the are pretty much at a 100 years low so you are wrong.


By knutjb on 9/9/2012 1:17:23 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
tax cut=revenue cut... so.. No they don't go up.
Prove it. When taxes have been raised revenues go up for a short period, then fall long term.
quote:
This would only possibly work if taxes were so high that they impede the economy but the are pretty much at a 100 years low so you are wrong.
For those who do pay taxes it is too high. Many of the deductions are set for cherry picked groups, not the averages that politicians spew. Those in power give their donors the advantage. Both sides have done so. I am for someone who will eliminate them all and lower the rates. Look up the Hauser curve at the Hoover Institute at Stanford University.


By nick2000 on 9/9/2012 10:09:28 AM , Rating: 2
Again, if that were true, we would have full employment right now which we don't. Again, taxes have never been this low for anybody. High taxes on high earners like we had in the fifties did not impede a growing economy. Low taxes always seem to be linked with depressions. I cannot tell whether they are both symptoms of a wrong economy or if there is a cause an effect relation but here you have it.

And, yes, people who pay taxes always want to pay less. In fact, they like to pay exactly as much as they like the society around them.

The question becomes: what society or country do you want and how much are you willing to pay for it? It seems an awful lot of high earners want somalia these days.


By knutjb on 9/9/2012 5:46:15 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
High taxes on high earners like we had in the fifties did not impede a growing economy.
Look at what happened when JFK dropped tax rates.
quote:
Low taxes always seem to be linked with depressions.
That is just false. The tax rates were very high before the depression of 1920, lowering them and cutting the Federal government in half led to the roaring twenties. The stock market crash was from overly easy money allowing people to leverage stock without much cash down, kind of like buying a house with zero down. Now where did I see that problem... The protectionist policies (Hoover) and new taxes and massive spending (FDR) which did bring down unemployment from +23% to 19% over a decade.

The idea that WWII ended the Great Depression is a fallacy. What ended the depression was when Truman ignored FDR hold overs and cut Federal spending in half. Taxes were high because people new that the huge debt from the 30's and WWII had to be paid off. Politicians started finding new ways to waste money and were becoming unhappy with the direction, hence JFK's cuts.

See a pattern...

quote:
Again, if that were true, we would have full employment right now which we don't. Again, taxes have never been this low for anybody.
Be careful when quoting the lefts tax averages. Those assumptions marginalize those who pay far more than the average. With over 50% of the entire country in a negative tax bracket how skewed are those averages?

quote:
The question becomes: what society or country do you want and how much are you willing to pay for it? It seems an awful lot of high earners want somalia these days.
Somailia is the best analogy you can come up with? That is just dishonest. I don't want European Socialism. When the government tries to fix everything they end up making the problem worse. When private entities do a bad job I can go elsewhere. When government does its usual poor job where can I go? How many people were fired in the GSA or VA spending scandals? The guy who encouraged the GSA mess still gets a lucrative retirement at our expense.

Or another government failure, education. We have more than doubled spending per child K-12, inflation adjusted. Yet we still have an ineffective system. So why give them more money? People with money are not wanting Somalia, they are tired of the inexcusable waste and fraud.


By nick2000 on 9/9/2012 11:44:31 PM , Rating: 2
There is no question of average. Taxes are simply at an all time low and the middle class is footing the bill in lower income raises. In short high income skyrocketed and the rest stagnated. This started with Reagan.
Checkout this little chart: http://thedailybanter.com/2010/10/reagonomics-debu...

You could say that welfare (you know, for people who don't pay taxes) are a form of government subsidies so that the 1% can make even more money while keeping the poor from dying!


By knutjb on 9/10/2012 10:50:38 AM , Rating: 2
Great chart from the left comrade. What they don't tell you is the middle class during that period was shrinking,but the lower class didn't grow. Where did they go? Up.

I don't see that when the wealthy make more that it is welfare. Tax loopholes are the welfare which the middle and lower class has become junkies to their loopholes too. Eliminate all the loopholes. The tax code is setup progressively, so when the rich make more they pay more. If you look at revenues to the IRS when tax rates are low the revenues go up. Funny that what I heard Art Laffer saying this morning.

Also people move up and down in various brackets throughout their life. The latest craze is to go after capital gains. Most retired people live off capital gains, raise capital gains hurt the retired.

It is dangerous to pit poor against the rich and that is what the Dems are trying to do. The current attempts to do so will hurt all of us with stagnation at best. Life isn't fair and it can never be made so. The best we can do is allow those willing to work harder than others to succeed. I don't agree in supporting those who choose not to work hard, let alone work at all. That does not mean their should not be a safety net for the very bottom. Our problem is the size of the safety net, it's way too big.

When government expands its foot print in those areas it forces charitable organizations out. Charitable groups do the job far more efficiently than the government ever will. It is naive and foolish to think government can fix it with new and expanded programs.


By Ryrod on 9/7/2012 12:38:53 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
When tax rates have been cut REVENUES go up.

False. It didn't happen in '02, or '03. The only time that revenues go up is when we are taxing too much and cut those taxes. Look up the Laffer Curve if you don't believe me. Cutting taxes worked for Reagan a few times because they were high, but he wasn't dumb enough to believe that constantly cutting taxes would lead to increased revenue so he taxed when it was necessary.
Joe Walsh tried to tell people that cutting taxes was the best way to increase revenue and he was wrong.
quote:
Both wars cost less than than Obama's Reinvestment act. Do be careful to separate the entire military budget and the actual cost of the wars.

Wrong again, unless you are only counting the bullets and the bombs. We are already at 1.3trillion in congressional war appropriations alone. That doesn't even include the costs to come for fighting in Afghanistan or the amount of money that will be spent on soldiers that are wounded mentally or physically. Obama's reinvestment act only cost us around 800billion and over a third of that was tax cuts.


By Reclaimer77 on 9/7/2012 12:50:50 AM , Rating: 1
Why are you lying? The 4 year period after the Bush Tax cuts went into effect the IRS grossed all time high tax receipts. All time, as in highest ever in the country. Tax cuts ALWAYS stimulate the economy, which increase tax revenues.

quote:
Obama's reinvestment act only cost us around 800billion and over a third of that was tax cuts.


Yes except that was overnight. The cost of the wars were spread out over 10+ years.

When Bush left office he had a $430 billion deficit. Not great by any means, but lets compare that to Obama's FIRST year in office shall we? Hmmmm, the billions somehow turned into trillions!

Do you just enjoy rewriting history or something?


By Ryrod on 9/7/2012 3:04:24 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Yes except that was overnight. The cost of the wars were spread out over 10+ years.

Oh, I'm sorry. I completely forgot that if it's long term and done by a Republican then it's ok for it to cost the American public a lot more. And if you really want to play that game then we can say the stimulus only cost the public 840 billion over 2.5yrs and technically only 472-537billion because that's what was spent on entitlements, loans, and grants. So 215ish billion a yr vs 2.3trillion total over 10 years which comes out to 230billion a year. But it's ok because a Republican decided to invade Iraq, right?
quote:
The 4 year period after the Bush Tax cuts went into effect the IRS grossed all time high tax receipts. All time, as in highest ever in the country. Tax cuts ALWAYS stimulate the economy, which increase tax revenues.

Wow you are good at cherry picking facts. You are right that they had the all time highest but with the help of an increasing GDP and inflation. Hell, by those measures Obama will far exceed Bush with even lower taxes in a couple of years. So that must make Obama the most successful in increasing tax receipts while lowering taxes, right? A better indicator is how the tax receipts compare to GDP, and in that case Clinton wins at 20.6%. Not Bush.
No matter how you look at it, you keep cutting taxes and you'll hit a 0% tax rate. Can you tell me how that is going to increase tax revenues. Tax rates and receipts make a curve not a diagonal graph. I suggest you look up the Gaffer curve, since you seem to be confused

quote:
When Bush left office he had a $430 billion deficit. Not great by any means, but lets compare that to Obama's FIRST year in office shall we? Hmmmm, the billions somehow turned into trillions!

You're joking right? Are you forgetting about the bank bailouts that got tacked onto FY09, which Obama had little impact on besides adding the reinvestment act. So it's not as much of a gap as you are implying. So a better comparison would be FY09, which was Bush's budget minus 800 billion, and FY10 which was Obama's first budget. So 1.4trillion - 700bil = 700bil was Bush's last deficit vs the 1.3trillion of Obama's first budget - the 400bil loss in tax receipts = 900bil. So Obama didn't go on a spending spree as you suggest. Furthermore, deficits are always higher during recessions, that's just how it works.
quote:
Do you just enjoy rewriting history or something?

I love reading histories and biographies, but it seems like you're more suited to historical fiction yourself.


By knutjb on 9/9/2012 1:05:13 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Oh, I'm sorry. I completely forgot that if it's long term and done by a Republican then it's ok for it to cost the American public a lot more.
You're convoluting the issues. Either your for the war or against it and that is fine, but irrelevant. The war was approved by congress just as the stimulus, the difference is both parties voted for the war in big numbers. The stimulus was full tilt democrat.

The stimulus is still more expensive than the war. The over $800B is the CBOs recent assessment which grows to over $1.1T when interest and other issues are factored in. The reason it goes so high was the overly optimistic projected revenues from a recovery that never happened for the economy. Because the economy didn't produce jobs, hence income tax revenues, it will become more costly over the initial projections. No additional money coming in to pay it off extends the impact on the deficit.
quote:
Tax rates and receipts make a curve not a diagonal graph. I suggest you look up the Gaffer curve, since you seem to be confused
That is the Laffer curve, but look up the Hauser curve at the Hoover Institute at Standford University. In summary, the Hauser curve relates % of GDP to revenues received by the IRS. It floats around 18-19% regardless of tax rates. When tax rates go up there is a short spike in revenues, then they fall and then the economy weakens from less money available to invest. That is how it's been with a few exceptions. Taxes are emotional, when people feel they are over taxed or government isn't spending properly they will do what they can to pay less in taxes, even if that costs more money than just paying the increased taxes in the first place.
quote:
You're joking right? Are you forgetting about the bank bailouts that got tacked onto FY09, which Obama had little impact on besides adding the reinvestment act. So it's not as much of a gap as you are implying. So a better comparison would be FY09, which was Bush's budget minus 800 billion, and FY10 which was Obama's first budget. So 1.4trillion - 700bil = 700bil was Bush's last deficit vs the 1.3trillion of Obama's first budget - the 400bil loss in tax receipts = 900bil. So Obama didn't go on a spending spree as you suggest. Furthermore, deficits are always higher during recessions, that's just how it works.
What turnip truck did you fall off? The 1.4T was not the budget, that was the deficit ALONE. The FY09 budget you want to attribute solely to Bush is incorrect too. The Dems, Nancy Pelosi had complete control of Congress from 2006, only passed a budget that lasted to the end of Bush's term. So you are very wrong in that assertion. Yes, normally a budget is passed for a fiscal year, but that is not what they did. The reason Harry Reid won't bring a budget from the House up for a vote is to keep spending levels high. They have passed spending bills but not a budget. The last budget set percentages not dollar levels. So to prevent the conservatives from massive departmental budget cuts they did this. The other thing that passed was the bill that would massively cut $500B from the military and $500B in other spending. It was done to force both sides to agree to a budget. The only reason there is not a budget is Harry Reid has not allowed it to come to conference. Even if Reid did allow one to be passed, Obama has clearly stated he would veto it. A veto would work because of the majority of democrats in the senate, a veto could not been over-ridden.

Stop listening to the usual suspects and do some of your own research. The kool-aid is lethal.


By knutjb on 9/9/2012 1:24:14 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
False. It didn't happen in '02, or '03. The only time that revenues go up is when we are taxing too much and cut those taxes. Look up the Laffer Curve if you don't believe me.
9/11/01-- 3 trillion dollars fell out of the economy. Funny how so many conveniently forget how big of hit we took on that day and how long it took to recover from it.

The last time I saw Art Laffer on TV, a few weeks ago, he would say you have it all wrong. Again, look up the Hauser curve as I have pointed out elsewhere. He takes the Laffer curve and applies it to GDP and real revenues.


By Samus on 9/6/2012 12:21:21 AM , Rating: 2
Ron Paul has been the most consistant politician I've ever paid attention too. For over a decade he has consistantly stood behind what he says and it's very easy to see which direction he leans in and what direction he will lean in going forward. I don't agree with everything he stands for, but his honesty outweighs that.

I agree with enough of his vision to want him in office. But being America, the right person never gets the right job.


By StevoLincolnite on 9/6/2012 1:23:36 AM , Rating: 2
I agree.
Plus Ron Paul will also pull your Military from all around the world which will mean more soldiers to protect American soil and Billions of dollars saved.

Not only that... Why the hell does America need a massive Spy drone in Adelaide, South Australia? It's about 3,000 miles from any sort of threat.
Why do they need troops in the Northern Territory? Australia has never been invaded.

It's a waste of money in my opinion, better spent protecting your own borders.


By Reclaimer77 on 9/7/2012 12:55:06 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I agree. Plus Ron Paul will also pull your Military from all around the world which will mean more soldiers to protect American soil and Billions of dollars saved.


Yes and believe me, Ron Paul's special blend of isolationism and gullible stupidity would assure we would need those soldiers here...


By ScotterQX6700 on 9/6/2012 7:50:35 PM , Rating: 2
Much agreement here. Liberty.


By martyrant on 9/6/2012 8:29:16 AM , Rating: 2
While I don't really agree with the article much, for those who wish to know the real truth behind all this I recommend Ferdinand Lundberg's "The Rich and the Super Rich" or "America's Sixty Families" (no, he is not a conspiracy theorist, he was the first person to criticize William Hearst among many others, a genius writer [he will have you picking up a dictionary probably by page 2]). He also has a book called Cracks in the Constitution if you find this stuff interesting, you might find that one as well. The problem with people these days is that they try to align themselves with a party so we can bicker amongst ourselves. It's a clearly cut plan that has been in place for over a hundred years (if you read the books, you will see PROOF of this country having been ran the same way for over 100 years) and it works beautifully to keep people down. A lot of people don't distinguish between the "rich" and the "super rich" and that is something Ferdinand Lundberg does well--he picks at each, gives you examples of each, and even goes into great depth on their character as a businessman as well. What people don't realize is that millions of dollars is nothing these days--and billions aren't much either when dynasties are funneling trillions of dollars throughout the world markets.

I have since stopped talking politics with anyone who is dumb enough to still align themselves with a political party simply because they are part of the problem and not the solution. I have a moral set of values that I live by, and some of them are "democratic" and some are "republican" but neither party has anyone who represents anything worth voting for (Ron Paul had my vote until the massive amount of voter fraud in the primaries and MONEY gave it to Romney--yet I'm "registered" democrat). That just goes to show you your vote doesn't matter anyway--you vote for one guy, they create enough fraud to simply get who they want as a candidate. I think Emma Goldman said it best: "If voting changed anything, they would make it illegal."


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