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Thursday, August 04, 2011

Tax cuts and propaganda

From Riverdaughter, yesterday:
They’re telling you that tax hikes kill jobs. Oh, really? How come they didn’t kill jobs in the 90′s when Clinton was president? And we’re not talking about all tax hikes, just the ones on the rich.
This reminds me of something I heard on a liberal cable news show -- Maddow's, I think -- the other day. I didn't record the exact words, but they were along these lines: "Barack Obama deserves credit for enacting the largest middle class tax cut in history. That was the stimulus."


Well, I'm glad that someone else finally said it out loud: The stimulus was not a Keynesian job creation bill; rather, it was (to a large degree) a tax cut bill. So how can we say that Obama deserves credit? He simply proved that tax cuts don't work.

In 2008, Bush got his own "stimulus" package through -- a package that everyone now forgets. That too was a tax cut. The lesson: Tax cuts don't work.

Does Obama deserve credit for repeating Bush's mistake?

In recent times, there has been much debate as to whether Obama's sell-out of progressive principles stems from an innate conservatism or a blundering ineptitude. But in the end, is the question so very important? The result is what counts.

The more interesting question is whether a "good" Obama -- an Obama who more closely resembled the progressive that that Kos Kids thought they were voting for -- would have been able to accomplish anything worthwhile. Probably not.

The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our political superstars, but in ourselves, that we are propaganda's underlings.

Even a hypothesized "Obama the Good" might have gone the tax cut route, because tax cuts are easy to sell to Congress. The public has been incessantly brainwashed into believing that tax cuts create employment, even though there is no evidence for that notion. In 2008, we should have raised taxes on the wealthy and then use the money to create jobs. Obama the Bad (the actually existing Obama) did not do so. But even our imagined Obama the Good could not have accomplished that goal.

Politically, he would not have been able to get in front the cameras in order to tell the public: "I'm not going to lower taxes to restart the economy because tax cuts don't work. It would be irresponsible to raise taxes now. We're running such huge debts because we fought wars without paying for them."

What's killing us is not our leadership. It's the brainwashing.

Proof: Most Americans don't know that Obama enacted the largest middle-class tax cut in history. In fact, in a poll of tea party members...
Sixty-four percent believe that the president has increased taxes for most Americans, despite the fact that the vast majority of Americans got a tax cut under the Obama administration. Thirty-four percent of the general public says the president has raised taxes on most Americans.
A proposal: I'd like to see a Constitutional amendment stipulating that America cannot go to war unless a steeply progressive tax is imposed to pay for the costs. We'd have peace for generations.
Considering that the Constitution already requires Congress to declare war, which hasn't stopped any warlike activities since the end of WWII, what makes you think this would do anything? I think you have to get real; no troops overseas for any purpose whatsoever without paying for it. Think of the good that one would do.
The information is out there, if you search for it. But searching takes time and when you are working nine to ten hours a day including the commute then driving the children to and from places they need to be or doing house work you can't look for the truth. That's why most Americans rely on the print and broadcast media for their information and end up thinking Obama raised taxes.

Computer programmers have a saying, "Garbage in, garbage out" it applies to news media consumers too. When you have "journalists" at the cable news outlets and the "papers of record shoveling swill and tripe into our heads in lieu of real news how can anybody make a sane decision.

Granted, you have the thirty per-centers who think George W was a great president and joined the Tea Party that think the news media is a Liberal plot but that leaves seventy percent that will make the right decision given the facts.
You're right, it was Maddow, but she was not claiming that tax cuts are an effective way of stimulating the economy. (She has made the case at other times that unemployment assistance is probably the most effective means of stimulus.)

Rather, she was indirectly pointing to the hypocrisy of people who applaud certain politicians for advocating tax cuts while criticizing Obama over taxes.
Yes, but wasn't that tax cut due to the decrease in SS/Medicare withholdings? I'd hardly consider that a win for Americans.
Fun Fact:

In order to close the deficit gap, we must return to ALL the Clinton era tax rates. That includes those making less than 250K.

Dems are setting themselves up for a policy and political fail relying on the "tax the rich" framing.

*setting aside corporations, who I believe pay a REAL tax of around 18% when all is said and done, might be as high as 25%?
Its your country. This land is your land and all that. Dont blame your news media. Do something about it. Stand for office. Write a letter. Go on a demonstration. Dont watch the media that is lying to your fellows.

If not you then who?

When this is all over, people will look for someone to blame. I mean just after the economy collapses due to dumb ass fiscal cuts and an idiot desire to pay speculators and bond holders whatever they claim they are owed. So eventually the economy collapses, and then they reverse policy, while we all whistle "brother can you spare me a dime".

When that day comes, probably best not to be Mexican. Somehow it will be all their fault.

Commentors like Mr Mike really vitiate this blog's quality. Core Tea Party members abhor George Bush; Ron Paul fans began the initial Tea Party.

Israeli military-industrial complex Big Government whores like Bachmann and Rubio have little in common with the Ron Paul Tea Party core.

You must support the Right Wing Big Biz Capitalists who are responsible for the cheap labor wage-depleting invasion of the Mexicans.
Actually Ken I dont. I really dont support the "Big Biz Capitalists" in this country. I think they are whiners, cheats, unpatriotic, self interested, and not actually capitalists. Its not the owners of the companies doing the exploiting. Its the managers. And then they award themselves blocks of stock for nothing, stealing from the shareholders. Once again Nader is spot on, apart from the idea that splitting the opposition vote is a good thing.

But policy isnt even being organised for these people - the managerial capitalists. If it was, the stock market would not have suddenly taken a nose dive would it? No, policy is organised to benefit bond holders. Nothing like a good recession to drive down wages and push up bond values.

On the subject of the Mexicans, do you really compete in a wage segment with mexican workers? Do you work in agricultural labour provision? Or perhaps in textiles? Or light manufacturing? If not, I would suggest Mexicans havnt been driving down wages for you. Perhaps you should blame Indians in Bangalore or Canadians, but it aint Mexicans.

Commentors like Mr Mike really vitiate this blog's quality.

Gosh, Ken, why couldn't you say,
"Commenters like Mr Mike really stink up the joint."

But then your Word-A-Day desk calender would go to waste.
Vitiate, my ass. Mr. Mike is spot on, regarding the media and the every day people who work way too many hours and have no time to read up for themselves. No one here cares about your little defense of either Tea Partiers or the EVEN WORSE Paulbots, Hoop. Throw them on the heap with Bush and regular Republicans. In fact, use them as kindling to burn both. Just today I was thinking how venal Libertarians much worse than Republicans. You're certainly on the wrong site if you're looking to rehabilitate the Ron Paul cult. Your anti-Jew and anti-Mexican comments just frost the cake.
05.Feb.2001 "Consider these, for we have condemned them; / Leaders to no sure land, guides their bearings lost / Or in league with robbers have reversed ..."
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