Democrats & Liberals Archives

Gather Your Armies? No, Get Your History Straight

It’s one thing to appeal to historical figures for support. It’s quite another thing to actually get what those figures stood for correct. Liberal blogger Steve Benen points out that the man who Alabama congressional candidate Rick Barber has issue a call to war against taxes actually issued a call to the army to enforce one!

As Dave Weigel explained, Washington "presided over, and approved, the first tax levied by the federal government -- the 1791 whiskey tax. When the tax met resistance, he approved the assembling of militias to enforce the law and mobilization of agents to collect the revenue. So the Barber daydream of Washington angrily ordering a 'gathering of armies' to oppose a tax is... well, entertaining, I guess."

No Taxation Without Representation was what the original Tea Partiers said. The new tea partiers say the same thing, only they have a constitutionally mandated Congress charged to do exactly that. And they have managed in a not insignificant number of primaries to unseat longtime Republicans, so it's not like the system is completely unresponsive to them.

What they apparently want, though, is representation that reflect their wishes, their ideas. Can't blame them for that. Well, what I can blame them for is considering that no representation at all, when it's not representing them personally.

Last I checked, we elected our politicians by democratic means, which means more than just Tea Partisans have a voice in deciding who is elected. What Washington and his generation fought for, died for, was a government where the citizens were the check and balance on the government, rather than the Government imposed on the citizens by a powerful minority.

Part of that social contract that our elections represent is the notion that if somebody wins the election fairly, then that somebody is elected to represent that district, that state, or represent the country as President, and the losing side of that election, the minority has to accept that election as legitimate, no matter how much they dislike that particular candidate.

"Gather your armies." Good heavens man, what irony. Washington not only went out to enforce a tax, he went out to enforce the sovereignty of the elected government, and to put down an insurrection. And now he's being cast by some factually confused politician as being rabidly anti-tax, and willing to front an insurrection against the very government he helped found.

Let's count some more ironies. He says that taxes aren't progressive. Well, did anybody bother to tell him what that meant? Our income tax system divides people's income up into brackets. When your income reaches that bracket, the money that falls in that range, and no other money, is taxed at that bracket's percentage. A rich man pays the same on his lower brackets as the poor man does on the same ones. That's our system, and it's called progressive, because the tax rate on income goes up progressively.

Plus, our income taxes are at the lowest they've been in more than half a century. The average person pays less taxes now, owing to the man that Rick Barber would impeach. That tax cut was part of a stimulus package that he and other Republicans opposed. Republicans singled out that middle class tax cut as being bad policy, even while they defended the one more balanced towards the rich.

Tax cuts on small businesses were part and parcel of that stimulus, so Obama did a lot to ease the burden that Small Business owners faced over the last two years.

When people rose up in revolt over the government's policies in 1791, they at least had the common sense to rebel against policies that they lost money, rather than gained money by.

"Gather your armies."

What pretentious bull. Would Benjamin Franklin have approved of the religious fervor of the right, being a Deist who was famously a ladies man? Would he have approved of their disdain of science and reason?

And Sam Adam's history? a bit more complicated than the Tea Partisans would probably admit.

First of all, was it all about taxes and their burden on small busines? Not really.

News of the Tea Act set off a firestorm of protest in the colonies.[125] This was not a dispute about high taxes: the price of legally imported tea was actually reduced by the Tea Act. Protesters were instead concerned with a variety of other issues. The familiar "no taxation without representation" argument, along with the question of the extent of Parliament's authority in the colonies, remained prominent.[126] Some colonists worried that by buying the cheaper tea, they would be conceding that Parliament had the right to tax them.[127] The "power of the purse" conflict was still at issue: The tea tax revenues were to be used to pay the salaries of certain royal officials, making them independent of the people.[128] Colonial smugglers played a significant role in the protests, since the Tea Act made legally imported tea cheaper, which threatened to put smugglers of Dutch tea out of business.[129] Legitimate tea importers who had not been named as consignees by the East India Company were also threatened with financial ruin by the Tea Act,[130] and other merchants worried about the precedent of a government-created monopoly.[131]

No taxation without representation was less about taxes, and more about a government imposed on them from outside that they'd be paying taxes to. It was also about a rather uninspiring profit motive on some folk's part that came from the fact that previous colonial trade policy kept the tea that put gold in Britain's coffers coming made Tea smuggling from the Netherlands more profitable for many.

An additional issue was the position it put legitimate sellers of British Tea.

The issue of colonialism rears its head throughout, because if trade had been more liberal, if British law wasn't being shaped to suit a company there which was trying to profit from their political connection and Britains legal monopoly, if smuggling weren't so much more lucrative than legitimate trade in foreign tea, if colonists hadn't been left in an ambiguous position concerning what authority Parliament had over them, or it hadn't tried to treat them like folks they could exploit for gain, none of this controversy would have been important.

In the end, colonial exploitation was the issue of the Tea Party, not taxation in and of itself. Remember, the act actually made the tea coming in cheaper. Little nuances like these get lost on those who glean only the most superficial elements from the mythology of the American Revolution, in their quest to base their political authority on this most revered of foundations.

Some historical accounts have Sam Adams actually trying to hold the folks going out to Tea Party back, because the meeting wasn't over.

Furthermore, there is some irony with Tea Partiers of today identifying with Sam Adams, especially if their claim is that they support the Constitution more fervently than other folks in this country:

Shays's Rebellion contributed to the belief that the Articles of Confederation needed to be revised. In 1787, delegates to the Philadelphia Convention, instead of revising the Articles, created a new United States Constitution with a much stronger national government. When the Constitution was sent to the states for ratification, Adams expressed his displeasure. "I confess," he wrote to Richard Henry Lee in 1787, "as I enter the Building I stumble at the Threshold. I meet with a National Government, instead of a Federal Union of States."

Something to consider here, when folks talk about the original intent of the Constitution, in that not everybody originally intended it, and not everybody liked the way things shook out, power-structure wise. The framers were not a monolithic group, they were a diverse lot who had to compromise between each other on multiple fronts in order to hammer out the Constitution we see today. The Bill of Rights is part and parcel of the compromise that was made to get people like Thomas Jefferson and Samuel Adams on board.

Make no mistake: the Consitution strengthened national government, and the limits placed on it were the compromise necessary to get those who opposed the stronger national government to agree to it. Rather than the constitution being the product of pure, inspired idealism, it was often enough the product of pragmatic powerbrokering between different political forces in the country, between slave and free state, populous states and more sparsely populated, states large in area and states small in it. Industry and rural interests contended, and those who wanted national government to get stronger contended with those who vastly preferred more state government.

Ideologically speaking, Today's Tea Partiers, despite their professed, boasted superior love of the constitution, would take many sides which were the preferred positions of those who opposed the stronger government the Constitution created!

Indeed, this is part an parcel of why the Tea Party is such a disorganized, angry, fringe position attracting movement. It appeals to the discontents of today's more constitutionally grounded government, one which concentrate much more power nationally than many of them would prefer, they claim a lot of things are unconstitutional, but often enough, that's just their opinion, and there isn't much real jurisprudence to back them up. Since the Constitution vests the real power of legal interpretation in the judicial branch, this pretty much makes this a personal opinion. Yet they insist on this, and push this view on others

Or, put another way, they themselves push for judicial activism, for folks to move things away from settled law to their preferred political interpretation. For all they accuse Democrats of going beyond the law, the precedent on most legal matters leaves them pushing for new constitutional interpretation on a broad variety of fronts.

To paint Healthcare reform as unconstitutional, you need to get past settled law that has Medicare and other such programs unchallenged. To outlaw abortion, you need to overturn Roe v. Wade. To outlaw the income tax, you'd essentially have to repeal a constitutional amendment, or gut its power with a very questionable court decision. They expect people to look the other way as they try and make American government advocate for Christianity, though the constitution specifically forbids this.

Modern Republican and Tea Party Rhetoric on the constitution isn't preservationist, it's revisionist. Whether it's taking away your right to burn a flag in protest, opening up schools to official prayer, outlawing abortion, forcing a balanced budget or whatever else, the last thing Republicans and Tea Partisans are doing in practice is preserving the constitution as it was. They are dedicated to the cause of their political and judicial activism.

To them, its about changing America back to the way it was, the way they figure it was best. But how many people are personally familiar with the conditions of the times they idolize? Fewer and fewer are left alive who remember the days of the Great Depression, even as children. Fewer and fewer are alive who remember things as they were before antibiotics and vaccines took the bite out of infectious disease as a primary killer of Americans. Children in elementary school do not know a world without the internet. Young men and women in high school have no living memory of the Soviet Union. I was just a boy myself when communism was defeated.

Think about that. The Tea Party's main line of attack is to call Democrats socialists. But the youngest voters of today have no real communism to make them shudder at the mention of socialism. It doesn't help if you point to Europe and say look at their economic troubles, because plainly the Republicans didn't create a socialist system, and we still got into trouble.

The Tea Party picked one of the worst times in history to argue for an economy with less regulation, for lower taxes. Reality doesn't seem to phase them. The Dogmatism has freed itself from reality. Maybe you can get the adults of today to believe this stuff, but the kids have grown up in a world where their fresh eyes have seen the continuous failure of these policies As I grew up watching the junk bond market collapse and the Savings and Loan Industry crater, they will have grown up watching Enron implode into a mass of fraudulent accounting and the casino in Wall Street destroy America's economy.

It was these failures and more, not some ideological argument (Oh, those Republicans weren't conservative enough!) that lead to people dumping the Republican majority, and putting that guy Obama in charge at the White House, and if you really look at the polls, the problem people have isn't that he's doing too much, it's that he's not doing enough!

People want him to put the hurt on BP. They want him to interfere with Wall Streets' business. They want drugmakers to stop marketing drugs that make people sicker. They want to invest in low risk funds knowing they're low risk, not merely hoping. They want the oil slicks kept off their shores, the Armed Forces back from where Bush sent them.

In short, if somebody's figuratively being told "gather your armies", it's Obama and the Democrats, and the frustration is with their not having done that yet. Or, put another way, people's main concern out there beyond the Tea Party fringe is not that Republicans may be too much like the Liberals and Democrats, but that the Democrats and Liberals may be too much like the Republicans.

To get out of this situation, Democrats have to start acting like themselves, and Republicans have to figure out a whole new identity. Who do you think has the better chance of rising up to that challenge?

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at June 15, 2010 1:33 PM
Comments
Comment #302191

Stephen, What are your views on Pelosi spending $18,736.00 a month on her district office and her 757 to cart her butt home most weekends at taxpayers expence?

Posted by: MAG at June 15, 2010 3:54 PM
Comment #302192

Mag, I would suggest there are plenty of Republicans in Washington that do the same thing.

Posted by: bpw at June 15, 2010 4:33 PM
Comment #302193

Mr. Daugherty wrote; “Make no mistake: the Consitution strengthened national government, and the limits placed on it were the compromise necessary to get those who opposed the stronger national government to agree to it.”

Well duh…in order to get most of the states to agree the constitution was written with language that gives most of the power to the states with very limited and itemized powers to the federal government.

Those compromises Mr. Daugherty writes about were not to make a stronger, but rather, weaker national government. OH well…liberal/socialists never cease in their attempts to rewrite history.

I won’t bother with corrections of Mr. Daugherty’s history of the Boston Tea Party. But, there are plenty of errors and misleading claims in his rendition.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 15, 2010 5:04 PM
Comment #302194

Mag, I would suggest there are plenty of Republicans in Washington that do the same thing.

Posted by: bpw at June 15, 2010 04:33

bpw…you have peaked my interest. Could you name just 2 or 3 Reps who enjoy these perks since you say there are “plenty” of them?

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 15, 2010 5:06 PM
Comment #302195

bpw, Most congress men from my state use commercial airlines and that includes Democrats.

Posted by: MAG at June 15, 2010 5:24 PM
Comment #302196

By the way bpw if it is true that most congressmebn enjoy those same perks it’s about time we stopped supproting their rediculous life style.

Posted by: MAG at June 15, 2010 5:32 PM
Comment #302197

Fifty years ago our federal tax rate was the highest in the history of the 16th amendment.

1952-1953 - 22.2% 92% IRS
1954-1963 - 20% 91% IRS

To say that taxes today are less than they were 50 years ago isn’t saying much. Expecially if you consider the tax rates before then.

1913-1915 - 1% 7% IRS
1916 - 2% 15% IRS
1917 - 2% 67% IRS
1918 - 6% 77% IRS
1919-1920 - 4% 73% IRS
1921 - 4% 73% IRS
1922 - 4% 56% IRS
1923 - 3% 56% IRS
1924 - 1.5% 46% IRS
1925-1928 - 1.5% 25% IRS
1929 - 0.375% 24% IRS
1930-1931 - 1.125% 25% IRS
1932-1933 - 4% 63% IRS
1934-1935 - 4% 63% IRS
1936-1939 - 4% 79% IRS

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 7:03 PM
Comment #302199

Weary Willie,

Taxes are a more complex subject than income tax or your post, but one also has to note that in 1913 getting from one end of the country to the other was a long and arduous adventure, and medical treatment was nearly as likely to kill you as not being treated. Basic literacy rates were at around 93% compared with 99% today, (70% to 98% for blacks) with a much larger population. Apples and Oranges come to mind.

Stephen,

I don’t believe Sam Adams or John Adams tried to hold anyone back, while John disdained the rabble of the Sons of Liberty, he eagerly, if secretively, participated in stirring up mobs. John defended a loyalist in the Boston Massacre. John also was a “reluctant” candidate, as was the fashion of his time. He was actually quite eager to run for office. Honesty in politics wasn’t present, even then.

The use of Shay’s rebellion to strengthen the federal government was a distortion of facts created by Boston businessmen profiting from the tax that was taking revolutionary land grants from ex soldiers at a deep discount, who also were instrumental in funding Washington’s army to defeat it. The heavy handedness of the Bostonians led to a massive defeat of Massachusetts politicians in the next election.

Posted by: gergle at June 15, 2010 7:37 PM
Comment #302200


“To say that taxes today are less than they were 50 years ago isn’t saying much. Especially if you consider the tax rates before then.”

WW, would you trade the life style of today for the taxes of 1925?

The government is much larger today than 50 years ago.

We treat the poor and especially the elderly far better today.

We have a massive standing army that has become the police force of the world and cost a lot more than then.

The government today supports large parts of the private sector economy, the military industrial complex, oil, etc.

The government has invested in military, space, and medical research that has been of tremendous value to the private sector economy and consumers.

We did all of this with lower taxes than 50 years ago, I call that a bargain.

We had an eight year setback. It will take a while, but we will come out of our current problems unless we are stupid enough to hand the government back to those who did this to us, Clinton/Bush and the Republicans.

Posted by: jlw at June 15, 2010 7:52 PM
Comment #302201

Federal Income Tax of 1913…

it is not surprising that the income tax had only a minor role in the federal revenue system during its infancy. In its first year in operation, it was responsible for raising less than 10 percent of federal revenues. By contrast, the income tax accounted for 45 percent of federal revenues in 1950 and nearly 73 percent in 1985.

The 1913 version of the income tax did not even merit its own act; rather, it was adopted as part of the Underwood/Simmons Tariff Act of 1913.
It marked the beginning of a transformation from taxation based upon the need to consume to taxation based upon the ability to pay.
Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 7:53 PM
Comment #302202

jwl, your post basically says, if it wasn’t for government taxation we would still be livin with the conditions of those in 1925!

Why is the federal government the only entity considered productive these days? Do you really think that if the federal government stopped it’s social programs everyone would just drop dead?

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 7:58 PM
Comment #302203

Unions, once needed, have become a facade. Minimum wage is a law. 40 hour work week is a law. Child labor is outlawed. Unions are becoming obsolete in this country. The union’s hold on our government is parasitic. Would the workforce collapse if there were no unions?


Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 8:33 PM
Comment #302205

If the federal government were to disappear, would the citizens of Indiana stop and stare until they died?

I wouldn’t.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 8:37 PM
Comment #302206

Right on Weary…of course I know you are smart enough to know that no liberal/socialist will admit to the truth you’re writing.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 15, 2010 8:41 PM
Comment #302208

Royal Flush,
Don’t let them off the hook like that.
Your post excuses their thought pattern. I want them to defend their position.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 8:46 PM
Comment #302209

I just finished listening to Barry’s speech. Did that lift anyones spirits or instill confidence that someone is actually in charge who has any idea of what to do in the Gulf? Oh yes…let’s limit or stop drilling in the gulf, that’s the answer. Does Barry have the clout to demand that all drilling, by us and everyone else stop, or is this pygmy just referring to American companies?

Barry is an imposter president. He pretends that his words will fix things when in fact, he’s just spouting and shouting and calling for another commission.

I actually believed he would blame GW by name but even he, as mentally challenged as he is, knew that wouldn’t wash. So instead, he praised his flunkies for their rapid response. That is pure unadulterated bull crap. Even his own rah rah team on the networks are slamming Barry and his flunkies for this failure to respond quickly. Is there anyway we can just bribe this phony president to just resign?

His answer was totally expected, more government. We are awash in natural gas and he couldn’t even mention what a fantastic resource we already have.

Barry the Boob won’t gain any traction with this tired old liberal/socialist remedy. More taxes…let’s tax energy so we’ll have more of it. Ho Hum, where have we heard this stupidity voiced before.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 15, 2010 8:56 PM
Comment #302210

http://www.watchblog.com/democrats/archives/007100.html#302208

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 9:06 PM
Comment #302211


WW

I mentioned social programs, military, all the ways we help business.

How big will our military be in relation to other countries if we cut it by a third?

How much could we reduce taxes if the private sector paid us back for the technology we have developed that has helped them develop products? How much would cell phone usage cost, or would there even be cell phones. How about satellites and satellite TV and communications. How much does the home computer owe to the development of smaller computers to control space craft?

Many of the high tech things that we now take for granted may still be years in the future without government investments in research and development.

Apparently all you care about is how much better off you would be without social programs.

My solution for social programs is full employment at above poverty level wages and better education. Then, if people fail to be responsible and fall back into poverty, we can blame them, but not before.

Posted by: jlw at June 15, 2010 9:06 PM
Comment #302212

Texas Senator John Cornyn just released this email…

“The ruptured BP well has now spilled oil into the Gulf of Mexico for nearly 60 days, and residents of our southern coast are looking to BP officials and this Administration for answers. Unfortunately at a time when the full attention of our government should be devoted to the environmental and economic impacts of the spill, Democrats in the Senate used the disaster as an opportunity to push more reckless, deficit spending. In a broad piece of tax legislation before the Senate, Democrats inserted a provision to raise the tax on energy producers, from $0.08 to $0.41 per barrel of oil produced. Under the Democrats’ plan, the revenue generated would be double-counted; once, to offset the deficit spending included in the bill and second, to add funds to the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund, which is used to help pay for the clean-up of oil spills. Last week several of my colleagues joined me in highlighting this accounting gimmick, which is the exact type of unseemly game-playing which deservedly gives Washington a bad name these days. I have joined a number of my colleagues in offering an amendment that would ensure any money raised for the Trust Fund will be used as intended – and not to justify more out-of-control Washington spending.”

I can’t wait to read Mr. Remer’s explanation of why the senator is dead wrong.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 15, 2010 9:06 PM
Comment #302213

Q: How many will be lost in the loop?

A:

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 9:08 PM
Comment #302214

jlw wrote; “My solution for social programs is full employment at above poverty level wages and better education. Then, if people fail to be responsible and fall back into poverty, we can blame them, but not before.”

Gee jlw…have you been living in a cave? Unemployment at or below 5% is considered as close as we can get to full employment and we have achieved this percentage many times since the “war on poverty” began. I sure as hell didn’t read of or hear any liberal/socialists calling for an end to social programs then. What’s changed?

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 15, 2010 9:14 PM
Comment #302215

jwl,

If the federal government provided cures for diseases, inovations in communication, more productive farms, at the taxpayers expence then that technology is Public Domain technology and free to anyone who wants to use it.

The Supreme Court made a mistake when they assumed a corporation was a human being. Allowing a few to control the technology developed by the many was a mistake.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 9:14 PM
Comment #302216

Royal Flush,

You have in one post called President Obama a “pygmy”, a “phony” an “imposter”, “mentally challenged” and a “boob” in regards to the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster and energy policy. You called those responding to the disaster, i.e., US Coast Guard, flunkies and failures. Considering the forcefullness of your characterization, I must presume that you have some insight as to what should be done that hasn’t been done. How exactly would you solve the current BP spill in the Gulf? How exactly would you cap the well and clean up the oil? How exactly would you prevent another occurence?

You imply that you have some insight as to an effective energy independence policy for the US, citing abundant natural gas. So, what is that policy? Would natural gas substitute for oil? How would it differ from the Obama administration’s policies?


Posted by: Rich at June 15, 2010 9:42 PM
Comment #302217

Weary,

Who cured polio? Who developed antibiotics? Who developed many surgical techniques? Who built the roads you drive on? Who educated you and your family? Who provided the water and sewer that allows you to live in the burbs? It wasn’t Ford.

I’m guessing you believe this all happened in private companies. Guess again. Research it a little. While many private companies did the work, they were mostly funded by local and federal taxes. Medicine has largely advanced in war theaters. Guess who funded that?

It wasn’t Walmart, or Exxon. It wasn’t IBM or even HCA.

I believe industry and competition does lead to advances. Walmart has something to say about logistics. IBM has something to say about computing. HCA can say things about distribution of medical services, and various contractors have improved road and infrastructure construction.

But basic research is usually done by grants and large scale projects funded by taxes. Like MASH units and basic trauma surgery. Like Polio research and antibiotics research.

Taxes are low in banana republics. Few advance the sciences.

I do not want to see America become any more of a banana republic than it is. That is the consequence of your advocacy, however. Screaming taxes are too high is a common complaint of a middle class who’s wages are being depressed by the economic dominance of Wall Street, but is more a cry of frustration than understanding of the problems, which is why this political position will continue the problems rather than solve them.

I have no horse in the fictitious race between big government and unregulated capitalism. It’s a fools distracted obsession, in my opinion. Roy is closer to where the problem lies, a gaming of the economic system by corpocracy.

Posted by: gergle at June 15, 2010 9:43 PM
Comment #302218

Did Alexander G. Bell receive money from the federal government to develope the telephone? Did Thomas Edison ask the federal government for money to develope the light bulb? Nope!

But the federal government allowed the corporation to intrude everywhere electricity was used because the federal government promoted the use of electricity.

The government should hire the corporation to do a specific job, ie. wire rural areas for electricity. Then pay off the investors and hire another corp to run the grid for the long term.

“What if…,” asks Jane Anne Morris of Democracy Unlimited in Wisconsin, who may be the only corporate anthropologist at large in North America:

**corporations were required to have a clear purpose, to be fulfilled but not exceeded.

**corporations’ licenses to do business were revocable by the state legislature if they exceeded or did not fulfill their chartered purpose(s).

**the act of incorporation did not relieve corporate management or stockholders/owners of responsibility or liability for corporate acts.

**as a matter of course, corporation officers, directors, or agents could be held criminally liable for violating the law.

**corporation charters were granted for a specific period of time, like 20 or 30 years (instead of being granted “in perpetuity” as is now the practice.)

**corporations were prohibited from owning stock in other corporations in order to prevent them from extending their power inappropriately.

**corporations’ real estate holdings were limited to what was necessary to carry out their specific purpose(s).

**corporations were prohibited from making any political contributions, direct or indirect.” (Rachel’s Environment and Health Weekly, #488, April 4, 1996)

http://dieoff.org/page62.htm

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 9:49 PM
Comment #302220

MAG-
Well, she’s the Speaker of the House. That’s not an inactive office she has there. But that sum you quote is less than John Boehner’s catering bill, or Mark Kirk’s bill for polling his constituents.

The headline’s not flattering of Pelosi (it mentions a large bill for flowers), but a quick look through it will tell you what a talking point that jet and office is. Maintaing a big jet like that’s not cheap, but its a justifiable expense given her leadership position.

Weary Willie-
First, its effective rates for the average citizen. If you want to make a big deal out of what the rich pay, be my guest, but for most people, including those Tea Partisans, they’re effective tax rates are low.

The Progressive tax system ensures this, because it chops up income into separate brackets with separate rates. Only the top bracket gets the top rate, so everything else is lower than the top rate, and there’s a part of the income that’s not even taxed. That’s what your deductions are all about.

But of course, you couldn’t get people outraged about that by telling them the truth. You really would not be getting those top rates unless you were earning very high amounts, and because of the way the tax system works, you would still keep every dollar a person of lower income would keep in the same brackets.

Many of the people who first suggested all these tax cuts and flat taxes and the like are millionaires who would benefit greatly from the change. They don’t tell you this, they just stir you up with talk about how badly you’re taxed, making it to where you practically think the government’s shaking you by your ankles to see what falls out of your pockets.

Why is the federal government the only entity considered productive these days?

Funny that you think you heard that from me. It’s not that the Government’s more productive, it’s that the Government can dredge up the debt financing necessary to move us out of the economic doldrums so private business can get back to the job of sustaining the economy. We’re not socialists, and were not looking to permanently socialize the economy. If we had interest rates to cut, we’d cut them. If we had an investment sector to encourage, we’d encourage them. If we could encourage people to unload their savings and get more money into the economy, we would.

The trouble is, folks in Washington, principly the Republicans essentially strained every other means of pumping money into a money starved economy. Hence, deficit spending.

But you know what? It was never considered socialist before the days of the red scare for the government to help people out a little. It’s gotten to where even help in the face of a disaster or crisis is seen as a moral hazard to be avoided. It used to be that this was considered prudent policy. Political philosophies should respond to realities or be discarded.

Unions, once needed, have become a facade. Minimum wage is a law. 40 hour work week is a law. Child labor is outlawed. Unions are becoming obsolete in this country. The union’s hold on our government is parasitic. Would the workforce collapse if there were no unions?

Everything we’re talking about here is statutory. A while back, somebody in the Bush Administration allowed people to give their employees bogus management titles so they could avoid paying them overtime (overtime being part of how we enforce the forty hour work week)

I’m sorry to say, but the Republican view ong labor practices is just outrageously naive. You can talk about the obsolescence of Unions only because the unions got this country’s average citizen prosperous enough to forget how bad it used to be. Folks in management, though, are quickly reminding people why unions became necessary.

Self-satisfied hypotheticals, by the way, are no substitute for actual investigation into the way policies really work.

Royal Flush-

OH well…liberal/socialists never cease in their attempts to rewrite history.

And some folks on their right never cease in their efforts to convince others not to agree with them. What do you think you gain from this kind of dumb rhetoric?

Look, they took a weakly defined, decentralized government, where a supermajority of the states had to agree to every law, where all the states had all these things they could do at odds with each other, and it defined a bunch of those powers back to the national government. I can cite you the differences, the intensifications of authority, so I’m not rewriting history, I’m recounting it.

As for correcting my misapprehensions of the Boston Tea Party? Correct them. Show me my errors. This website isn’t for self-congratulation, its for debate. I put some facts on the table, you disagree with them. Fine. Evidence. Offer some evidence. Show that more than just sentiment backs your opinion. Come on, I do this all the time. I take advantage of where my opponents are wrong to communicate to people where I am right. I take the opportunity of explaining the problems with their arguments to offer up the alternative.

Personally, I would feel ashamed to take the tack you just did. I will take every opportunity to correct your facts, where I can actually find them enough of them to actually have something to correct.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 15, 2010 9:49 PM
Comment #302221

Stephen, I don’t think that Boehner has a catered event every month, the next highest congressional rental is half that. As far as needing her own private plane is BS. She can ride commercial cheaper. Or she can hitch a ride on a C 130 out of Edwards going to S.F. She don’t need to fleece the tax payers because she thinks she’s special.

Posted by: MAG at June 15, 2010 10:01 PM
Comment #302222

By the way Stephen congress needs to stop the rediculous spending. If they want donuts they can pay out of pocket like I do and if they want flowers pay out of pocket to. Hell Pelosi’s office rent is more then her yearly salary.

Posted by: MAG at June 15, 2010 10:21 PM
Comment #302223

MAG made the idiotic statement: “As far as needing her own private plane is BS.”

In this country we protect elected officials from the WINGNUTS that send 100’s or even thousands of threats, including death threats, to them. Nancy Pelosi is hated by the Right and the numbers of threats against her have been steadily climbing. Our democratic process REQUIRES that the people’s choice in elections be protected from such idiots who have the arrogance as to even think about offing the people’s elected choices.

I doubt you had a problem with Reagan having publicly funded private transportation to protect him from Left Wingnuts. Stop being duplicitous and make statements which do not pretend to be ignorant of the facts on the ground.

Better yet, get out there and convince your fellow RIGHT WINGNUTS to stop sending all those threats, and then perhaps the people wouldn’t feel compelled to protect their elected leaders.

And yes, MAG, the people elected her from her State, and the majority Party elected her Speaker. She is the people’s choice, by definition in a democratically elected government. Don’t like democratic elections? Leave.

Posted by: David R. Remer at June 15, 2010 10:30 PM
Comment #302225

DRR, Everyother elected official uses commercial transportation unless they are priviliged enough to OWN their own private jet and if they are priviliged enough to own their own plane they can I’m sure cover the cost of fuel without bilking the tax payers for every trip they make unless it is official business. Yes the people of Ca. elected her, even though her state is going broke she still has the audasity to bilk the tax payers of that state almost a quater million a year in office rental and other frivillous items. The only IDIOTIC statement is yours in your comment a few bodyguards are cheaper then a 757 don’t ya think and use less fuel.

Posted by: MAG at June 15, 2010 10:55 PM
Comment #302226

MAG-
You don’t think?
What do you actually know? Read the article. He’s paying more than Pelosi is paying for that jet just for the Congressional Quarterly and the analysis that comes with that.

As for talking about stopping ridiculous spending? I’ve heard that talk all my life. The people who talk that talk end up being the folks who can’t walk the walk, because right out of the gate they’ve demonized half the means of getting that Budget reconciled.

It’s frustrating to talk about taxes nowadays, because you can’t even suggest a moderate tax increase without being tarred and feathered as wanting to rob the American people blind.

It’s not a pleasant obligation, but if we don’t have the political will behind not spending that money, then it should come out of pocket so we at least are clear on the cost of the Government we choose to have.

Like I’ve said again and again, people will be a heck of a lot more conscious about spending increases when they feel the bite of the taxes required to pay for them. If you instead choose a dogmatic anti-tax position, but do not have the will or means to actually cut spending, which has proven true for Republicans in government, then you’ll just run higher deficits.

Republicans and Right Wingers need to realize that whether it’s something you like in the budget, or something you don’t, it still costs the same money. Defense doesn’t and didn’t pay for itself by virtue of the popularity it’s always had with Republicans. Defense spending is still spending, but please introduce me to the Republican willing to make cuts in the world’s largest defense budget.

And again: Nancy Pelosi is Speaker of the House, the third most powerful person in the country. if Obama and Biden go at the same time, she’s President. The Taxpayers would not be well served by requiring her to work out of a storefront.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 15, 2010 10:59 PM
Comment #302227

MAG-
Speaker of the House. That’s a major position in our government. She’s got a lot to do and many people to do it with. She’s not some backwoods politician without a committee assignment.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 15, 2010 11:06 PM
Comment #302229

Just got back from a trip to DC with a buddy of mine from school.

SD, Good Article, it’s very valuable for liberals to remind the conservatives how the rightist ideology conflicts with the intentions of the founders.

MAG, the Speaker of the House is 2nd in line to succeed the Presidency. The President and Vice President have traveled on government owned aircraft for decades (currently they use a VC-25 & a C-32) and in other government owned vehicles before then. After 9/11, the Sergeant at Arms of the United States decided that the Speaker of the House should not travel on commercial aircraft for security reasons so a plane was obtained for Speaker Hastert. Here is the statement from the Sergeant at Arms:

As the Sergeant at Arms, I have the responsibility to ensure the security of the members of the House of Representatives, to include the Speaker of the House. The Speaker requires additional precautions due to her responsibilities as the leader of the House and her Constitutional position as second in the line of succession to the presidency.

In a post 9/11 threat environment, it is reasonable and prudent to provide military aircraft to the Speaker for official travel between Washington and her district. The practice began with Speaker Hastert and I have recommended that it continue with Speaker Pelosi. The fact that Speaker Pelosi lives in California compelled me to request an aircraft that is capable of making non-stop flights for security purposes, unless such an aircraft is unavailable. This will ensure communications capabilities and also enhance security. I made the recommendation to use military aircraft based upon the need to provide necessary levels of security for ranking national leaders, such as the Speaker. I regret that an issue that is exclusively considered and decided in a security context has evolved into a political issue.

Wilson Livingood was first elected when Newt Gingrich and the GOP controlled Congress and had 33 years of experience in the United States Secret Service prior to becoming Sergeant at Arms.

Lastly, Pelosi does not use a C-32 (the military version of a 757). She uses a C-37A (the military version of a Gulfstream V), which is a much smaller plane. When weather conditions are favorable, she uses the smaller C-20B that was used by Fmr Spkr Hastert instead of the C-37A.

Posted by: Warped Reality at June 15, 2010 11:24 PM
Comment #302228

Stephen, Her state is going broke or haven’t you heard. IMO she should be one of the first people to show some type of restraint. That’s the problem Stephen, we let to much frivillous BS go on in congress, they need to be examples of fiscal responsibility instead of fiscal irresponsibility before they ask us to pay more in taxes. There is a difference between Defence spending and spending $3,000.00 on flowers just to make your office pretty. Like I said a few bodyguards are cheaper then a 757 and so are a few commercial plane tickets.

Posted by: MAG at June 15, 2010 11:24 PM
Comment #302230

Ok I’ll concede the plane, but not the other frivillous BS.

Posted by: MAG at June 15, 2010 11:28 PM
Comment #302231

I accidentally omitted the second paragraph from the Sergeant at Arms:

Statement of the House Sergeant at Arms

As the Sergeant at Arms, I have the responsibility to ensure the security of the members of the House of Representatives, to include the Speaker of the House. The Speaker requires additional precautions due to her responsibilities as the leader of the House and her Constitutional position as second in the line of succession to the presidency.

In a post 9/11 threat environment, it is reasonable and prudent to provide military aircraft to the Speaker for official travel between Washington and her district. The practice began with Speaker Hastert and I have recommended that it continue with Speaker Pelosi. The fact that Speaker Pelosi lives in California compelled me to request an aircraft that is capable of making non-stop flights for security purposes, unless such an aircraft is unavailable. This will ensure communications capabilities and also enhance security. I made the recommendation to use military aircraft based upon the need to provide necessary levels of security for ranking national leaders, such as the Speaker. I regret that an issue that is exclusively considered and decided in a security context has evolved into a political issue.

Source

Posted by: Warped Reality at June 15, 2010 11:30 PM
Comment #302232
It’s not a pleasant obligation, but if we don’t have the political will behind not spending that money, then it should come out of pocket so we at least are clear on the cost of the Government we choose to have.

The Democratics don’t have the political will to not spend that money.

Just because the Democratics don’t have the will to cut spending doesn’t mean WE don’t have the will.
I think your post is projecting your philosophy onto the lot of us, David.

so we at least are clear on the cost of the Government we choose to have

Again, I think this is presumsuous, because “we” are not included in your philosophy.

but please introduce me to the Republican willing to make cuts in the world’s largest defense budget.
Posted by Stephen Daugherty at June 15, 2010 10:59 PM

Allow me to introduce Ron Paul.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 15, 2010 11:31 PM
Comment #302234


Royal Flush, one out of three. Address the other two, poverty level and education.

Why do many people in the lower income brackets qualify for federal and state assistance?

How big would our economy be if everyone knew the value of money and acted accordingly?

How dependent is our economy on the fact that a majority of Americans act irresponsibly?

If the American consumers continue to act responsibly, watch their spending, pay down their debt, because of this recession, this recession will never end.

Without the irresponsible consumer our economy would not be nearly as large.

Imagine what it would be like if the national economic theme was built to last instead of new and improved or don’t worry, go shopping.

Planned obsolescence, what a great concept.

How long did Sen. Cornyn say it would take before the tea party candidates would be ready to graduate from conservative talk radio and Fox News, and move on to prime time?

Hey, hey, ho, ho, Social Security has got to go.

Hey, hey, hee, hee, Medicare is history.

Posted by: jlw at June 15, 2010 11:41 PM
Comment #302235


On Pelosi, servant of the people, $1,736 per month and a piper cub is good enough.

But, she is the Speaker of the House!

Ok, a small learjet with an extra strap on fuel tank, but the fan club goes economy.

$18,736 per month makes me wonder who is collecting the rent. Sounds like one of those deals Hastert was famous for.

Posted by: jlw at June 15, 2010 11:55 PM
Comment #302236

So let me get this straight, Pelosi moved from one office to another larger office in a newer Federal building with better security. Does the taxpayer pay the rent on her district office and then collect the same rent as the owner of the federal building her office is in? Or has this privatization thing of the conservative movement caused this to be a real problem? Perhaps she would not need the additional security were it not for the hateful name calling and verbal attacks on her by the far right talk radio conservatives and their followers.

Posted by: j2t2 at June 16, 2010 12:01 AM
Comment #302237

How many are stuck in the loop?

Let me know when you “Get Your History Straight”!

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 16, 2010 12:30 AM
Comment #302239
A while back, somebody in the Bush Administration allowed people to give their employees bogus management titles so they could avoid paying them overtime
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 15, 2010 09:49 PM


Prove it.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 16, 2010 12:47 AM
Comment #302242

WW, Ron Paul is the laughing stock of the economics community. His policy would make the Great Depression look like a Sunday tea party with oir doerves’, not to mention collapsing the entire global economy as well, sending 100’s of millions of people to their deaths through starvation and other basic necessity privations.

And this is your savior for the economy? A person who wants to take us back to the pre-industrial era of our economic history with the Gold Standard, which literally would destroy virtually all domestic American companies and small businesses for a decade and very likely decades to come? Get a grip, man. Or, at least and economics course or two for nightly reading.

Posted by: David R. Remer at June 16, 2010 1:05 AM
Comment #302243

MAG said: “Ok I’ll concede the plane, but not the other frivillous BS.”

Thank you. Now we can agree with each other on the other frivolous stuff. Security, however, is not frivolous for the people’s choice of leader of their House of Representatives.

Posted by: David R. Remer at June 16, 2010 1:10 AM
Comment #302244

Weary Willie-
Prove it? Proven.

The many other rules changes—principally those amending the three key duties tests—would dramatically increase the number of workers who would be classified as “professional,” “administrative,” or “executive” and thus remove millions of additional workers from overtime coverage.

Changes in the primary duty test and the redefinition of “executive” will allow employers to deny overtime pay to workers who do very little supervision and a great deal of manual or routine work, including employees in factories and industrial plants. Employees who can only recommend—but not carry out—the “change of status” of the two employees that they “supervise” will be exempted as “executives” even if they manage nothing more substantial than a team or grouping of employees. In all, 1.4 million low-level, salaried supervisors will lose their overtime rights, along with 548,000 hourly supervisors, who could be switched to being paid on a salary basis and thus denied overtime protection.

More than 900,000 employees without a graduate degree or even a college degree will be designated “professional employees” and lose the right to overtime pay, even if their pay and status fall far below that of degreed employees. As many as 2.3 million team leaders with no supervisory authority will be exempted as “administrative employees” even if they are line or production employees.

Approximately 130,000 chefs and sous chefs who are not executive chefs will be exempted as “learned professionals” and “creative professionals.” Pre-kindergarten and nursery school teachers, no matter how low their pay, will be exempt under the new rule, even if their work does not require the exercise of discretion and judgment. We estimate that 30,000 nursery school teachers will lose the right to overtime pay.

Mortgage loan officers will be affected by the new financial services industry exemption and by the gutting of the protections for employees who are line workers, rather than policy or business operations staff. Ultimately, 160,000 mortgage loan officers will lose the right to overtime pay that they currently have today.

In addition, nearly 90,000 computer employees, funeral directors, and licensed embalmers will become exempt professionals and lose their right to overtime pay.

Furthermore, the DOL creates a new exemption that will deny overtime protection to otherwise nonexempt employees who earn $100,000 or more a year, as long as they regularly perform a single task that could be considered characteristic of an executive, administrative, or professional employee. This new provision will exempt an estimated 400,000 employees who currently are entitled to overtime pay.

Altogether, we estimate that nearly six million employees will lose their right to overtime pay on the basis of just 10 of the many changes the final rule makes in these critical regulations.

I practice what I preach. That was 2004, so no wondering whether it could have been a recent (an therefore Democratic) policy change. This was your guys, all the way.

As for Ron Paul? Well, when every Republican is like Ron Paul, at least in this single respect, then you can talk. Until then, we’re faced mostly with Republicans who cry “traitor” if anybody gets near the DOD to make spending cuts.

Royal Flush-
Obama has done much more to get our economy on track than years of Bush Administration talk about the economic benefits of cutting taxes ever did.

And yes, Bush will get blamed. That’s what happens when you screw things up on an epic scale. And really, it’s not as if Obama is being blamed for making the economy worse. The Economy’s gotten better under him. The disappointment is that he hasn’t done more faster, which is ironic consider that he would have done more, faster, if Republicans weren’t trying to pull a Hoover and be austere at a time where our economy doesn’t have the extra money to fill in the gaps.

Or put another way, Republicans have spent the last thirty years asking the average American to make up for the shortfalls of the system, accepting lower wages, less union representation, more uncertainty in their retirement and so on and so forth so that the Rich could enjoy a greater and greater share of the fruits of the economy. Now the plan is to once again try and get out of an economic and fiscal disaster on their backs, the problem being that they’ve already been hit smack dab in the face with this one.

The whole issue is that people don’t have enough money or leverage to adjust to the shortfall the Republicans want to induce.

Timing is everything, and the Republican’s policies put us in a very crappy position.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 16, 2010 1:36 AM
Comment #302245
Ron Paul is the laughing stock of the economics community.
His policy would make the Great Depression look like a Sunday tea party with oir doerves’, not to mention collapsing the entire global economy as well, sending 100’s of millions of people to their deaths through starvation and other basic necessity privations.
Prove it.
And this is your savior for the economy? A person who wants to take us back to the pre-industrial era of our economic history with the Gold Standard, which literally would destroy virtually all domestic American companies and small businesses for a decade and very likely decades to come?

That is your opinion, David R. Remer. Do you really think Ron Paul wants to “take us back to the pre-industrial era of our economic history”?

Get a grip, David! You don’t always have to be right. You don’t always have to argue. Get out of the loop.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 16, 2010 1:39 AM
Comment #302246

Stephen Daugherty, what has your government done about that?

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 16, 2010 2:05 AM
Comment #302247

Weary Willie-
Quite a bit, apparently.

One of the advantages of having an actual labor advocate as your Labor Secretary.

Here’s one example of going after those exemptions.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 16, 2010 2:26 AM
Comment #302248

Stephen Daugherty,

$25 million was set aside expressly to help the DOL combat employee misclassification.

Get Real, Stephen. Your posts should also reflect a position that represents some sort of coherent stratagy aimed at securing this country instead of spending money on a Karl Marx themed spending program called employee misclassification.

Face Facts, Stephen.
Quit denying your history to favor your utopian view of your utopian view! Your party did the same thing in the early 1800’s. Why can’t you see the failure. Must you repeat it?

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 16, 2010 2:54 AM
Comment #302250

I believe your party must repeat it, Stephen.

It must be repeated until the government is firmly in control of the resources and the people of this country.

Every third generation of this country’s history something has happened to steal the wealth and the soverenty from the average citizen of this country. It has been done by design. A citizen’s uprising is just a hiccup, and a spoon full of sugar cures it.

It’s a shame people who agree with me are chastized and mischaractorized, but they are becoming the majority, Stephen. Soon your position will be a minority position even more than it is now. Soon your party’s tactics will fail and your motive will be naked in front of all.

I feel it already is. But, I see things sooner than most.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 16, 2010 3:10 AM
Comment #302253

Weary Willie,

Ron Paul’s policy statements leads one to the conclusion that he will knowingly or unknowingly lead us into a a major depression and corporate led anarchy, were he ever elected.

I was a fan of Ron Paul during the last presidential election until I became familiar with his policies.

I worked in Ron Paul’s district a couple of years ago, and like the area. I also recognize, economically, it is completely dominated by the petrochemical industry. Dr. Paul may be a good gynecologist, but his understanding of economics is poor and fringe, his understanding of science is poor, and his understanding of governance is poor. His district is largely rural except for the small, company run chemical town where his office is located. A lot of people supported Ron Paul for his truth telling about the Iraq war, most were unaware of his looney toon other policies. Locally, his Iraq stance was not welcomed. His small government idea works well in captive chemical industry town. Even though Dow and others have properties surrounded by swamps, they have contaminated ground water outside their plants forgetting to inform locals. Most people’s pensions and livelihoods depend on the chemical plants and they will defend some egregious behavior on the part of the plants.

His abandonment of the Libertarian party speaks to his expedient approach to politics, as does his acquiescence to the chemical industry which fits well with his district’s politics.

Posted by: gergle at June 16, 2010 3:46 AM
Comment #302255

Weary Willie-

Karl Marx themed spending program called employee misclassification.

Karl Marx themed? You’re joking. This is what allows people who are worked beyond their normal hours to enjoy extra capitalist benefits in compensation.

That’s what allows people to have the time to live normal lives, while still making a living. And that is what actually keeps socialism and communism at bay. When capitalism can’t squeeze the life out of people, they don’t show up at the gates with torches and pitchforks.

The aim is to keep the outrages to a minimum, to put a check on the excessive power of big corporations and the wealthy so that people don’t feel the need to bust down the doors and drag the people out. We don’t have to deal with socialism because we have liberalism, which allows business a relative degree of freedom, and the average person a better degree of comfort.

As far as my view of history? It’s not utopian. In my view, people have struggled with their government and the upper class from day one. Whether it’s Andrew Jackson versus the Bank of the United States, or the industrialization of the country in the late 1800s, the Gilded age, the Great Depression or whatever else, history is rife with conflicts between the average person and those who run the economy.

But the good part is, we have a mechanism, however imperfect, however problematic on occasion, for evening the score, for making sure that people don’t get screwed in this economy.

But that’s the mechanism your people are constantly attacking in the utopian believe that somehow, the magic market fairy makes ponies. You guys said that rich people would turn around and make jobs when you handed them more money in tax cuts. What happened? They sent jobs offshore, the better to make even more money! Adam Smith could have told you, folks do work and invest for somebody else’s gain, they do it for their own.

Current conservative market philosophy has been proven naive again and again. No, the market did not ensure that Enron’s accounting would remain straight, or that the power companies would keep energy cheap and generation efficient. No, the market did not serve, minus rules, to protect borrowers from predatory lenders, or the economy from overenthusiastic, greedy speculators. And no, the specter of market disapproval did not keep BP from cutting corners and blowing a well as a result, deep frying the Gulf in crude. Nothing much has happened as promised, which is why people like me have the better case to make to the American people.

As for my motives? There are short piers available for long walks, if you are so inclined. My motive has always been the good of the country and its citizens. You can talk about the repetition, but the repetition of what? Your party, the one that keeps on trying to bring back the labor standards of the first half of the last century, when the Middle Class was a shadow of what it was, is the one that keeps us in some kind of loop. People like me want to move on adapt to the here and now in our government.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 16, 2010 9:09 AM
Comment #302258

Stephen, WW’s philosophy is that we live in order to work. Makes me kinda feel sorry for the guy?

“I’ve gotta lotta livin’, TO DO! Oh, Life’s a ball if only you know it. And it’s all just waiting for you. You’re alive, So come on and show it. We got a lot of livin’, Such a lot of livin’, Got a lot of livin’ to do!”

Bye Bye Birdie. The French have the right philosophy on this topic, as far as I am concerned. If you love your work, enjoy your work. That’s livin’ too! But, if work is not all fulfilling, then there is a whole lotta other livin’ to do, as well, if one will just reach out and live it. For most people who work in this world, work is a means toward the end of living. Not the other way around. No knows this better than the very wealthy who work, if they work, for the joy and satisfaction of it. For most of the non-wealthy, such joy and satisfaction is very difficult to come by with one’s employment. Work is the means to seeking that joy and satisfaction elsewhere, like a great book, movie, camping adventure, vacation to a far flung cultural center, or years of practice perfecting an avocation such as gardening, billiards, archery, gymnastics, dance, yoga, or Tae Kwan Doe.

Posted by: David R. Remer at June 16, 2010 9:41 AM
Comment #302261

Mr. Daugherty wrote; “Like I’ve said again and again, people will be a heck of a lot more conscious about spending increases when they feel the bite of the taxes required to pay for them.”

Finally a partially true and factual statement. Of course, what Mr. Daugherty fails to consider or perhaps even understand, is that nearly half of our adult population don’t pay any taxes. In fact, the liberal/socialists have found ways to give them tax refunds while paying no taxes.

So Mr. Daugherty, how will they feel the “bite of the taxes” required to keep them receiving all the pig fat?

Those Americans currently paying taxes are already very “conscious” about spending increases Mr. Daugherty and many of them belong to the TEA “Taxed Enough Already” party movement.

Mr. Daugherty, I hope those liberal/socialist politicians you perhaps admire run on the simple premise you advocate…

ELECT ME AND I WILL INCREASE YOUR TAXES NOW AND IN THE FUTURE, SO YOU UNDERSTAND WHY ALL THE GOODIES YOU DEMAND OF ME ARE BREAKING OUR COUNTRY

Mr. Daugherty frequently reminds us of his quest for knowledge and facts. From where have our huge deficits mostly come Mr. Daugherty? It is a fact that social security, medicare and medicaid are currently consuming a huge and increasing percentage of our GPD. And, the liberal/socialists have just added another potentially larger pig swill to our economy in the form of the Health Care legislation recently enacted.

Mr. Daugherty and his philisophical political comrades appear to believe that unlike SS, Medicare and Medicaid, the health care bill will be cost effective. Nonsense. In their own minds I just have to believe they know better but just don’t give a damn as it will keep them in power by virtue of spending my money.

Most folks with just some limited reading and understanding know that our Republic will be destroyed when the electorate understands they can demand more and more benefits from government while not paying for them out of their own pocket.

As Mr. Daugherty’s statement above demonstrates, liberal/socialists have a mental disorder.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 16, 2010 12:32 PM
Comment #302262

Quote from Barry Boop on TV last night…

“The one approach I will not accept is inaction,” Mr. Obama said from behind the presidential desk named Resolute with the traditional flags in the background. “The one answer I will not settle for is the idea that this challenge is somehow too big and too difficult to meet.” From the NY Times.

Isn’t this the strawman argument that Mr. Daugherty and Mr. Remer are so fond of disparaging?

Who exactly is calling for “inaction” and who is saying “this challenge is somehow to big and difficult to meet”?

The intelligent and informed listener understands that it is Barry Boop himself who is guilty of inaction and inability to meet the challenge.

Many, Many, Many things could have been done early on to help prevent much of the destruction now in evidence and yet to come. Offers of help poured in from many nations in material and resources and were denied or dismissed. Governors of affected states begged and pleaded for permission to take action they knew would protect their shores…also denied, dismissed or delayed.

I find it horribly humorous that Barry Boop has ordered all to stop referring to our military action in Iraq and Afghanastan as wars, but has no problem referring to a war-like approach in the oil spill.

Whenever a liberal/socialist speaks of going to war with poverty or illiteracy and now oil I grab my pocketbook as I know it is just a code-word for spending huge sums of my money. Barry Boop sees this catastrophe as an opportunity for him and his socialists friends to further their main goal, that of redistributing income and assets from me and other hard working Americans to those they favor to entrench their power and destroy capitalism.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 16, 2010 1:04 PM
Comment #302263

I forgot to add this statement from the NY Times this morning…

“Until now he has employed most of the tools of his office, imposing a deepwater drilling moratorium, traveling repeatedly to the region, firing an agency director and appointing a commission.”

Well isn’t that just a powerful, insighful, and responsibility laden statement. A tool of many presidents, appointing a commission is merely a defensive mechanism to get them off the hook, buy time when they don’t have a clue on how to proceed, and direct the heat and attention to someone else.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 16, 2010 1:14 PM
Comment #302265


WW said,

“But I see things sooner than most.”

Prove it!

Posted by: jlw at June 16, 2010 1:47 PM
Comment #302266

Royal Flush-

Finally a partially true and factual statement. Of course, what Mr. Daugherty fails to consider or perhaps even understand, is that nearly half of our adult population don’t pay any taxes. In fact, the liberal/socialists have found ways to give them tax refunds while paying no taxes.

Yeah, nothing except for FICA, Sales Taxes, taxes on vehicles- I’m not boring you with inconvenient facts here, am I? We’ll feel the bite, when the taxes go up.

But then people won’t be so quick to ask for more government, now will they? Under your current plan, if the folks in government can’t agree on spending cuts, you’re more than willing to deficit spend to avoid raised taxes.

Those Americans currently paying taxes are already very “conscious” about spending increases Mr. Daugherty and many of them belong to the TEA “Taxed Enough Already” party movement.

Conscious? The folks who didn’t even know that 95% of them got tax cuts? Who don’t even realize that their own taxes are rockbottom low, historically speaking, for this day and age? Pardon me, but when I use the word conscious, I mean aware of one’s surroundings. A tax protestor who doesn’t know their taxes are low, or have been lowered by the person they’re bashing isn’t a well informed citizen, they are a dupe.

What I can run on is responsibility. What you can run on is continued obliviousness to the heart of the fiscal problem. It’s not spending, it’s not taxes, it’s spending and taxes together.

Now rather than work out an agreement where moderate tax increases meet moderate spending increases halfway, when the economic time is right, you just want to continue with this one sided approach. You want to play all the political games and keep on pushing the style of fiscal governance that has failed every time the Republicans have tried it. Reagan and both Bushes tried things that way. Tell me, in their great and utterly devastating wisdom, did any of them leave office with a smaller deficit than when they came in?

Our plan is simple:

1)Get the economy back on track. If people aren’t working jobs, there isn’t income to pay income taxes.

2)Get the tax rates set at an appropriate level once the economy’s back in good shape. New spending requires new taxation, or the replacement of those dollars out of something else’s budget.

3)Get the Spending rates appropriate. Find the right programs to cut, the right savings to derive.

Beauty of this plan? It’s worked before. Unlike your plan, which is to starve the beast, a plan that’s never worked, and only endebted us further, this plan was successfully employed by Bill Clinton and the Republicans to restore fiscal balance.

But it requires a good economy, which right now we don’t have.

You can throw that pig slop you call rhetoric at me all you want to, but your claims have been discredited. It’s under your people that we’ve seen debt skyrocket, and the economy go south anyways, despite your promises.

You can call people idiots for not believing as you do, but when your policies never work, what room do you have to criticize them for their opinions?

Who exactly is calling for “inaction” and who is saying “this challenge is somehow to big and difficult to meet”?

You and your Republican friends, who are always talking about how it’s impossible to face the challenge of global warming without destroy the economy.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 16, 2010 2:16 PM
Comment #302267

I wrote; “Who exactly is calling for “inaction” and who is saying “this challenge is somehow to big and difficult to meet”?

Mr Daugherty responds with; “You and your Republican friends, who are always talking about how it’s impossible to face the challenge of global warming without destroy the economy.”

OH MY…he names me and my R friends as those Barry Boop refers to with regard to the oil spill and while he’s at it changes the subject to global warming. C’mon Daugherty…you can do better than that. Where are those “facts” and logic you so frequently mention?

Mr. Daugherty writes the following about a statement I made with regard to federal income taxes…”Yeah, nothing except for FICA, Sales Taxes, taxes on vehicles- I’m not boring you with inconvenient facts here, am I?”

Hmmm…somehow Daugherty manages in his statement to confuse his litany of taxes with federal income taxes. Well, for liberal/socialists I guess all taxes are good and for the same purpose. I luv his reference to Algore with the “inconvenient facts” comment. We all know that Algore has been discredited. One should be careful about whom they emulate.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 16, 2010 2:49 PM
Comment #302269

Royal Flush-
To paraphrase a song from my home state, Taxes Are Taxes. We pay them, all the same. We get them withheld from our check, same as everybody else.

As for the facts about what your people are saying?

Try Michele Bachmann, who badmouthed the BP escrow account that’s being set up as “redistribution of wealth”. Perhaps she doesn’t like the idea of BP not being in control of which claims are paid out- you know, the company that’s got every incentive to be a cheapskate?

Or Haley Barbour, who say, don’t make BP pay into an escrow fund, which is a means by which we ensure BP actually pays and can pay, because if we make them pay, they won’t be able to pay. I know, if Yogi Berra was able to get the AFLAC duck to stalk off in anger, Barbour would give it a stroke and drop it dead.

How about all these Republican Politicians (and shamefully a few Democrats) who have said that we need to get right back to drilling, despite the fact we don’t know what we need to know about the quality of the operations on the rigs?

When Republicans talk about doing Wall Street Reform, what’s their alternative? When they talk about Healthcare reform, what’s their alternative. We got a million problems, and their answer to most of them is, the government can’t be allowed to intervene.

That’s inaction.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 16, 2010 4:34 PM
Comment #302286

Royal Flush, for all your retort, Stephen D., remains absolutely correct about Republicans standing on their platform of inaction. Republicans have publicly stated that their aim is to insure that this President and Democrats do NOT succeed at anything they try to do. Of course, that means blocking all actions to act on behalf of the American people and for their benefit and general welfare.

Palin, Bachman, Boehner and more are defending BP these days, instead of advocating for the kinds of actions that will pay for restoration and reclamation of damaged livlihoods in our Southern states. That is a politically untenable position for Republicans to be taking as we approach these mid-term elections.

Obama took money from BP, and so did many Republicans. The difference between them is that Obama is holding BP to account for their actions and inactions, literally not carrying their water for them. While Republicans seem to be dutifully lackeying after BP and the oil industry.

Every president since Jimmy Carter has spoken to and attempted to deal with our growing dependence upon dirty and foreign oil. We now have a president who took oil money to get elected and now is working to make good on all those presidential attempts of his predecessors. And Republicans remain in defense of the status quo, and engaged in wet dreams of a stifled and ineffective Democratic majority, despite Democrats repeatedly demonstrating a capacity to deal with the challenges Americans face.

Obama got from BP what Congress never could have, and what Republicans would not even contemplate. Responsible action for the affected American people in our affected Gulf Coast states, including funding lost wages for unemployed oil workers during the moratorium on further deep will drilling. It was one helluva coup for Pres. Obama, which leaves Republicans on the wrong side of this issue and fence going into the 2010 elections. Just how many toes can Republicans shoot off their feet before they fall flat on their faces in November?

We may very well find out. I heard Palin say this week that we should be looking to foreign governments for advice and assistance in dealing with the oil mess. This from a woman who denounces our own government. In the McCarthy era, that would have been deemed the talk of an enemy of America. To prefer foreign government to our own, as a Republican, has to be good for at least two toes with one shot.

Posted by: David R. Remer at June 17, 2010 12:41 AM
Comment #302301

Senator Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat, summed up well this President’s misplaced priorities: “The climate bill isn’t going to stop the oil leak…The first thing you have to do is stop the oil leak.”

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 17, 2010 11:05 AM
Comment #302302

“Everyone expected the housing market to suffer at least a temporary hangover after the government’s $8,000 tax credit expired, but not necessarily this much. Preliminary data from around the country indicates that the housing market began swooning last month immediately after the credit was no longer available. In some places, sales dropped more than 20 percent from May 2009, when the worst of the financial crisis had subsided.” http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/17/business/economy/17slump.html?th&emc=th

Mr. Daugherty and Mr. Remer are quite fond of telling us that cutting taxes is not a good way to stimulate the economy. Well, in the case of the housing $8,000 tax credit it apparently worked quite well.

Of course, the liberal/socialists will insist that allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire is a good thing and will be good for the economy. OH WELL…consider the source and the undeniable fact that they suffer from a mental disorder.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 17, 2010 11:18 AM
Comment #302303

All we got from President Obama was a vague call for some sort of new energy policy. Plus a Gulf Coast Restoration Plan, an oil spill study commission, a reminder that the secretary of energy won a Nobel Prize in physics and 17 references to God, prayer, blessings or faith.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 17, 2010 11:30 AM
Comment #302305


David R, every president since Richard Nixon has said we must get off oil, especially foreign oil.

The Republicans are reaffirming their gig. Gather your armies and wage war against the enemy’s of BP and un americanism. We must stop this assault on our ruling class.

Posted by: jlw at June 17, 2010 12:48 PM
Comment #302307

Mr. Remer wrote; “We may very well find out. I heard Palin say this week that we should be looking to foreign governments for advice and assistance in dealing with the oil mess. This from a woman who denounces our own government. In the McCarthy era, that would have been deemed the talk of an enemy of America. To prefer foreign government to our own, as a Republican, has to be good for at least two toes with one shot.”

I am glad you used the clarifying words “as a Republican” with the outrageous statement. I recall numerous liberal/socialist lawmakers and judicial types suggesting we use foreign law in our judicial determinations so it is obvious why you left out the dems.

OH YES…Barry Boop and Mr. Remer apparently agree that letting the oil spew and contaminate is much better policy than enlisting the aid and resources of other governments willing to help.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 17, 2010 1:10 PM
Comment #302313

Royal Flush-
Bush handed over a trillion dollars to the rich. Economic crisis happens anyways. Why? Well, one part is you’re not handing money to people who spend it and put it back in circulation. You’re handing it to people who keep it more idle. Second, while there’s some stimulative effect, it’s not as great as handing people jobs, especially in times when people are lacking in jobs. You can’t hand a income tax cut to a person on unemployment.

We don’t dispute a tax cut can help, but history has shown both with the Bush Tax Cut and the Reagan Tax Cut that neither effectively lifted us out of the respective economic crunches we were in.

The Republican assumption, whether it is right or it is wrong is an elitist one: give money to the upper class if you want to see it do economic good. That Republicans criticized Obama’s middle class tax cut demonstrates this bias well.

Why don’t people make such a big deal of this? The essential message is that class reflects character, that when they talk about the people who really deserve to figure out for themselves how to spend their money, they’re talking the folks with high incomes, not you or me.

As for this Barry Boop thing, what are you, five years old? You think this really impresses people, what powerful contempt you show for Barack Obama? It was ugly when I saw people do this in High School, and it’s just sad from somebody who’s obviously not there any longer. I don’t have much love for schoolyard bullies, nor much respect for those who act like them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 17, 2010 3:49 PM
Comment #302314

Mr. Daugherty writes; “We don’t dispute a tax cut can help, but history has shown both with the Bush Tax Cut and the Reagan Tax Cut that neither effectively lifted us out of the respective economic crunches we were in.”

Glad you agree and perhaps you should get a history book not written by liberal/socialists. Your contention concerning the Reagan and Bush tax cuts have been refuted many times on this blog.

As for Barry Boop or (Boob)…c’mon…I won’t write what I really think of him out of respect for the office. My choice of words is mild compared to what liberal/socialists have called R presidents and conservatives. My God man…look at the name calling that continues regarding Sarah Palin and she isn’t even an office holder. Would you prefer that I use Barry’s muslim name?

My friend, you obviously never met a real schoolyard bully.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 17, 2010 4:07 PM
Comment #302317

Royal Flush-
So, let me get this straight. Reagan signs his tax cut bill in August 1981. Unemployment then is at 7.4 percent. When’s the next time Unemployment dips back below this number? May of 1984. Unemployment peaks in November and December of 1982 at 10.8, stays above 10.0 until June of 1983, almost two years after the bill is signed.

Bush’s economic growth depended largely on either a stock market or a housing bubble, each mainly supported by allowing the associated industries and the financial to lie like dogs about what money they were actually making, or going to make. It is that illusion, when punctured, which has lead to the smothering deflationary recession we’re still trying to crawl out of. So let’s not pat ourselves on the back about his policies.

Unemployment is down under Obama within the year. Economic growth is immediate and strong. You don’t need me, a “liberal/socialist” history book or anything else to find things like these out. Just go to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

I have friends. You’re not one of them. People who are my friends know my history. You don’t know it. I know how schoolyard bullies operate. I’m very familiar with the psychology from first hand experience. I’m familiar with the way they absolutely don’t care about keeping consistent with the facts. I’m familiar with the constant efforts at humiliating the target, frustrating the target.

The point is not to correct on a friendly basis. It’s not to critique constructively. The point is to dominate, out of a sense of entitlement to the alpha position in the pack.

This is, to me, what the party’s been reduced to, what it would inevitably be reduced to when it became a coalition concerned with putting liberals in their place, driving them out as a force in politics. The politics of personal domination, of power applied against people’s wishes, is always the same.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 17, 2010 5:49 PM
Comment #302318

Stephen, Unemployment down?????? 0.3% is nothing to be proud of. especially when those jobs created were temporary government jobs.

Posted by: MAG at June 17, 2010 6:20 PM
Comment #302319

ROyal Flush, your reply was denser than lead.

OF course folks on the left don’t have a problem with looking to other governments when that action will benefit America and Americans. They are not hypocritical about it, as PALIN IS! Dense, dense, dense.

As for Obama, you simply don’t have, (nor want) the facts. Obama has accepted aid and equipment from other nations, in total contradiction to assertions made by folks on the Right like yourself and Palin. In fact, in April, the Obama administration contacted ALL American embassies around the world with instructions to determine what resources those foreign nations may have to aid us in containing the BP oil.

As usual, Obama is several steps ahead of Republicans, making them look like fools by the time they even conceive of how Obama may have screwed up and make such claims public. Ignorance and arrogance are not the sole province of the Right, but, the act of asserting these as a strength and badge of honor, seems to be.

Posted by: David R. Remer at June 17, 2010 6:30 PM
Comment #302322

Mr. Daugherty defines a schoolyard bully by writing; “I know how schoolyard bullies operate. I’m very familiar with the psychology from first hand experience. I’m familiar with the way they absolutely don’t care about keeping consistent with the facts.”

Hmmm…when I read “schoolyard” I think of grade school. Beyond that I call it a campus. I just can’t believe that those in grade school become bullies by being inconsistent with the facts.

Barry Boop (Boob) is a Chicago trained bully by Mr. Daugherty’s definition, as he certainly is “inconsistent with the facts.” Does anyone remember all the different numbers of uninsured he went thru before settling on a final number.

Pardon me for refering to you as “friend”. As a Christian I usually refer to all God’s children as friend until they prove to be unworthy of that affectation. I prejudge no one despite our political differences.

Mr. Daugherty also wrote; “Unemployment is down under Obama within the year. Economic growth is immediate and strong.”

Whew…what a statement. Only a liberal/socialist could look at where the employment numbers come from (think Government jobs) and call it an accomplishment or improvement. The economic growth statement is just comical.

Does anyone doubt that liberalism is a mental disorder?

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 17, 2010 6:50 PM
Comment #302323

Mr. Remer wrote; “ROyal Flush, your reply was denser than lead.”

Sorry Mr. Remer…I was commenting on your portrayal of Sarah Palin. Apparently what you wrote was so convoluted and confused that even my great intellect couldn’t decipher it. Please try to write more clearly in the future so I can fully understand. I wish to discuss with clarity.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 17, 2010 7:06 PM
Comment #302337


O’Reily said BP doesn’t know how to stop the leak and obviously Obama doesn’t know how to stop the leak, Then he stunned Palin by asking her if she knew how to stop the leak. After a moment, she responded with the Republican attack line, the government should have called in the Dutch. O’Reily just hung his head.

Just answer the question Sarah, do you know how to stop the leak? Do the Dutch know how to stop the leak?

Unfortunately, everyone now knows how to stop the leak.

Posted by: jlw at June 18, 2010 1:58 AM
Comment #302380
WW said,
“But I see things sooner than most.”
Prove it!
Posted by: jlw at June 16, 2010 01:47 PM
History Unfolding

I am a student of history. Professionally, I have written 15 books on history that have been published in six languages, and I have studied history all my life. I have come to think there is something monumentally large afoot, and I do not believe it is simply a banking crisis, or a mortgage crisis, or a credit crisis. Yes these exist, but they are merely single facets on a very large gemstone that is only now coming into a sharper focus.

Something of historic proportions is happening. I can sense it because I know how it feels, smells, what it looks like, and how people react to it. Yes, a perfect storm may be brewing, but there is something happening within our country that has been evolving for about ten to fifteen years. The pace has dramatically quickened in the past two.

We demand and then codify into law the requirement that our banks make massive loans to people we know they can never pay back? Why?

We learned just days ago that the Federal Reserve, which has little or no real oversight by anyone, has “loaned” two trillion dollars (that is $2,000,000,000,000) over the past few months, but will not tell us to whom or why or disclose the terms. That is our money. Yours and mine. And that is three times the $700 billion we all argued about so strenuously just this past September. Who has this money? Why do they have it? Why are the terms unavailable to us? Who asked for it? Who authorized it? I thought this was a government of “we the people,” who loaned our powers to our elected leaders. Apparently not.

We have spent two or more decades intentionally de-industrializing our economy.. Why?

We have intentionally dumbed down our schools, ignored our history, and no longer teach our founding documents, why we are exceptional, and why we are worth preserving. Students by and large cannot write, think critically, read, or articulate. Parents are not revolting, teachers are not picketing, school boards continue to back mediocrity. Why?

We have now established the precedent of protesting every close election (violently in California over a proposition that is so controversial that it simply wants marriage to remain defined as between one man and one woman. Did you ever think such a thing possible just a decade ago?) We have corrupted our sacred political process by allowing unelected judges to write laws that radically change our way of life, and then mainstream Marxist groups like ACORN and others to turn our voting system into a banana republic. To what purpose?

Now our mortgage industry is collapsing, housing prices are in free fall, major industries are failing, our banking system is on the verge of collapse, social security is nearly bankrupt, as is Medicare and our entire government. Our education system is worse than a joke (I teach college and I know precisely what I am talking about) - the list is staggering in its length, breadth, and depth.. It is potentially 1929 x ten…And we are at war with an enemy we cannot even name for fear of offending people of the same religion, who, in turn, cannot wait to slit the throats of your children if they have the opportunity to do so.

And finally, we have elected a man that no one really knows anything about, who has never run so much as a Dairy Queen, let alone a town as big as Wasilla , Alaska .. All of his associations and alliances are with real radicals in their chosen fields of employment, and everything we learn about him, drip by drip, is unsettling if not downright scary (Surely you have heard him speak about his idea to create and fund a mandatory civilian defense force stronger than our military for use inside our borders? No? Oh, of course. The media would never play that for you over and over and then demand he answer it. Sarah Palin’s pregnant daughter and $150,000 wardrobe are more important.)

Mr. Obama’s winning platform can be boiled down to one word: Change. Why?

I have never been so afraid for my country and for my children as I am now.

This man campaigned on bringing people together, something he has never, ever done in his professional life. In my assessment, Obama will divide us along philosophical lines, push us apart, and then try to realign the pieces into a new and different power structure. Change is indeed coming. And when it comes, you will never see the same nation again.

And that is only the beginning..

As a serious student of history, I thought I would never come to experience what the ordinary, moral German must have felt in the mid-1930s In those times, the “savior” was a former smooth-talking rabble-rouser from the streets, about whom the average German knew next to nothing. What they should have known was that he was associated with groups that shouted, shoved, and pushed around people with whom they disagreed; he edged his way onto the political stage through great oratory. Conservative “losers” read it right now.

And there were the promises. Economic times were tough, people were losing jobs, and he was a great speaker. And he smiled and frowned and waved a lot. And people, even newspapers, were afraid to speak out for fear that his “brown shirts” would bully and beat them into submission. Which they did - regularly. And then, he was duly elected to office, while a full-throttled economic crisis bloomed at hand - the Great Depression. Slowly, but surely he seized the controls of government power, person by person, department by department, bureaucracy by bureaucracy. The children of German citizens were at first, encouraged to join a Youth Movement in his name where they were taught exactly what to think. Later, they were required to do so. No Jews of course,

How did he get people on his side? He did it by promising jobs to the jobless, money to the money-less, and rewards for the military-industrial complex. He did it by indoctrinating the children, advocating gun control, health care for all, better wages, better jobs, and promising to re-instill pride once again in the country, across Europe , and across the world.. He did it with a compliant media - did you know that? And he did this all in the name of justice and …… .. change. And the people surely got what they voted for.

If you think I am exaggerating, look it up. It’s all there in the history books.

So read your history books.. Many people of conscience objected in 1933 and were shouted down, called names, laughed at, and ridiculed. When Winston Churchill pointed out the obvious in the late 1930s while seated in the House of Lords in England (he was not yet Prime Minister), he was booed into his seat and called a crazy troublemaker. He was right, though. And the world came to regret that he was not listened to.

Do not forget that Germany was the most educated, the most cultured country in Europe . It was full of music, art, museums, hospitals, laboratories, and universities. And yet, in less than six years (a shorter time span than just two terms of the U. S. presidency) it was rounding up its own citizens, killing others, abrogating its laws, turning children against parents, and neighbors against neighbors.. All with the best of intentions, of course. The road to Hell is paved with them.

As a practical thinker, one not overly prone to emotional decisions, I have a choice: I can either believe what the objective pieces of evidence tell me (even if they make me cringe with disgust); I can believe what history is shouting to me from across the chasm of seven decades; or I can hope I am wrong by closing my eyes, having another latte, and ignoring what is transpiring around me..

I choose to believe the evidence. No doubt some people will scoff at me, others laugh, or think I am foolish, naive, or both. To some degree, perhaps I am. But I have never been afraid to look people in the eye and tell them exactly what I believe-and why I believe it.

I pray I am wrong. I do not think I am. Perhaps the only hope is our vote in the next elections.

David Kaiser
Jamestown , Rhode Island
United States

David Kaiser is a respected historian whose published works have covered a broad range of topics, from European Warfare to American League Baseball. Born in 1947, the son of a diplomat, Kaiser spent his childhood in three capital cities: Washington D.C. , Albany , New York , and Dakar , Senegal .. He attended Harvard University , graduating there in 1969 with a B.A in history. He then spent several years more at Harvard, gaining a PhD in history, which he obtained in 1976. He served in the Army Reserve from 1970 to 1976.

He is a professor in the Strategy and Policy Department of theUnited States Naval War College . He has previously taught at Carnegie Mellon, Williams College and Harvard University . Kaiser’s latest book, The Road to Dallas, about the Kennedy assassination, was just published by Harvard UniversityPress.


Posted by: Weary Willie at June 18, 2010 11:29 PM
Comment #302406

Weary Willie,

Please do not include fraudulent attributions in your comments.

It seems that you have republished a viral email. Like most of these emails, it is rife with inaccuracies.

Posted by: Warped Reality at June 19, 2010 9:44 AM
Comment #302417

Oops! My bad.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 19, 2010 12:51 PM
Comment #302480

Weary don’t feel to bad about this phony email. Over the years I have received many like this from conservative and libertarian friends that fail to snope out what they have received from friends.

It is a good way for misinformation to become half truths and half truths to become outright lies. Many “leaders” of the conservative movement resort to this kind of email to give credence to their ideology and to raise the fear level amongst movement followers. It is the lowest form of debate but remember without fear to keep the moveement faithful in line the failed ideology of conservatism would be exposed for what it is and the conservative movement leaders would be exposed for the fascist they are.

The tea baggers are faaling for it right now.

http://www.playboy.com/articles/rogues-of-k-street/index.html?page=1

Posted by: j2t2 at June 21, 2010 2:18 PM
Comment #302894

Royal Flush-
First, I spoke of the style of bullies. Second, Obama’s estimates (you CAN call him by his proper name, if you’re not aiming to sound like a schoolyard bully) may have changed, but Republicans have come across with the ludicrous proposition that everybody’s got healthcare, because people can go to the emergency room and take on indigent care. Never mind that such healthcare comes at everybody else’s expense, the kind of leaching from paying customers that Republicans normally bash.

If you’re going to call people friend, please have the decency to act somewhat friendly. God will know the difference, after all.

Mr. Daugherty also wrote; “Unemployment is down under Obama within the year. Economic growth is immediate and strong.”

Whew…what a statement. Only a liberal/socialist could look at where the employment numbers come from (think Government jobs) and call it an accomplishment or improvement. The economic growth statement is just comical.

Does anyone doubt that liberalism is a mental disorder?

See what I mean? Should I feel befriended by you when call me insane? What’s comical to me is that you think that a government job isn’t just as good as any other job. Well, you know what? The money spends the same, and what money you spend is not kept from going to private industry. Money actually circulates in an economy, and if a temporary government infusion can push the economy to a higher power setting, it’ll be worth the money. The problem is, you’re so busy trying to insist that the economy gets run your way, that you forget to make sure it runs the right way.

Weary Willie-
I am just plum out of sympathy for Republicans who think the Democrats are destroying the country. They’ve been doing real damage to this country in so many ways for so long, and now the fact that people have handed the government over to the other folks them have them in a panic.

I don’t remember us getting this crazy about the change from Clinton to Bush. The truth of the matter is, Democrats are used to not having it easy. The Republicans though have developed a sense of entitlement, and they get scared when things don’t go their way.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at June 30, 2010 9:03 PM
Comment #380578

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