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« Big Savings, Twice the Performance of a Palin and Half the Cost | Main | T. Wall Drops Out; Feingold Left With Opponents With Even Less Political Experience »

May 24, 2010

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antpoppa

I have no use for Rand Paul. He reminds me of Peter Sellers character, Chance the Gardner, from the movie Being There. It will be interesting to watch corporate money streamline the presentation of the Republican political choice. Forget leadership, forget representation. Go straight to controversy and entertainment. The corporate ‘FEEL GOOD’ talking heads will be available, and with today’s media technology, who knows?

antpoppa

Did a google search, I didn't realize the book was written by Jerzy Kosinsky. I think I'll rent the movie. It was poignant then, it may be more so now.


[With other poor black seniors, watching Chance on TV]
Louise: It's for sure a white man's world in America. Look here: I raised that boy since he was the size of a piss-ant. And I'll say right now, he never learned to read and write. No, sir. Had no brains at all. Was stuffed with rice pudding between th' ears. Shortchanged by the Lord, and dumb as a jackass. Look at him now! Yes, sir, all you've gotta be is white in America, to get whatever you want. Gobbledy-gook!

Ty O'Mara

I agree with the insightful post and the brilliant comment on it. It might be possible to get elected to the senate, in this dreary time, by railing against big government. I also, think that these 'days of dreariness' have shown us many flaws in our government and financial system. To vote for the outraged, anti-government candidate could be a huge disaster, if it were to happen nationwide. There is nothing exciting about the work to be done: digging out from this financial mess, improving and expanding the middle class, reducing spending at the same time. This is going to be hard work, if you think a teabagger republican who preys on the fears of the voters is really the answer--then vote that way, but first ask yourself, if you think they will work tirelessly on your behalf and take criticism for doing so. We certainly need to reform, but lets not become a nation of "Random Pall Bearers."

Also, this is Jim Bunning's old seat, so this entire political episode could just be an abberation.

Ex-alderman Steve

"There is nothing exciting about the work to be done: digging out from this financial mess, improving and expanding the middle class, reducing spending at the same time."

These may be contradictory objectives. Historically, the vast post-war expansion of the middle-class was accompanied by increased government spending in infrastructure, education, and the military (which serves as America's version of industrial policy.) Interestingly, the huge economic expansion of the fifties and sixties occurred in a time when marginal tax rates were much higher on upper income brackets. America didn't pay down its post-war debt so much as grew out of it, making sure that the folks who benefited most from the good economic times paid their share.

Even more interesting, the tax increases on the top income brackets that Bill Clinton pushed through in 1993 (which not one Republican voted for) allowed his Administration to wipe out the deficits by the turn of the century. (By contrast, you may recall that his predecessor George H. W. Bush's budget people saw "deficits as far as the eye can see...") We all know what that good conservative Republican George W. Bush and his fellow conservative Republicans in the House and Senate did to that surplus...

Given how income and wealth in America has become so concentrated in so few hands nowadays, perhaps all we need to do is raise marginal tax rates on the wealthy back to where they were when that wise old Socialist Dwight David Eisenhower was President...

patricko

"...perhaps all we need to do is raise marginal tax rates on the wealthy back to where they were when that wise old Socialist Dwight David Eisenhower was President..."

Yes, I am certain that 91% marginal rates is just what this economy needs. That will really jump start things.

antpoppa

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communitarianism

Bring on that European Style Socialism!
I’m always applauding those friends of mine who come home from Europe round-eyed with amazement talking about education opportunities, health care, lack of downsizing (due to strict employment laws and trade policy), rewarding work that leads to a healthy retirement, vacations and pension, the control of money and lobbyists in politics and the waste of the citizens money on mythical exceptionalism promoted by force of arms or clandestine means.


Five TALKING POINTS conservatives used to create HAITI.
( We are almost there, since I previously used this list. See 4. Trade.)

Tea Party Rules

1.(H)ave taxes so low that government must borrow from IMF to subsist.
2.(A)dopt private ownership of traditional government services, fire police,roads & security
3.(I)naugurate private ownership of all property, lakes, streams, water rights, mineral and airspace.
4.(T)rade shall have no tax or any restriction as to ecological safety or accountably of product.
5.(I)nsure that democratic political representation is not functional and subject to overthrow or recall.


There are 200,000 slots available in HAITI if you really want to live under these rules.

Ex-alderman Steve

"Yes, I am certain that 91% marginal rates is just what this economy needs. That will really jump start things."

As opposed to the kind of economic growth we had over the past ten years, where most of the productivity gains in the economy went to a tiny sliver of Americans? Austerity isn't going to do anything for the economy, either.

By the way, as I recall the fifties were considered "good times" economically speaking. American Capitalism adapted quite well to a 91% marginal rate on the rich back in the day.

If we have learned anything from the recent economic collapse, it is that economic reward is not necessarily linked to performance in this country. In many cases, the winners appear to have been sociopathic boobs who covered themselves with glue and then marched headlong into a raging money storm...

Ty O'Mara

I am all for growing our way out of the current economic condition, and spending as much as it takes. If it is possible--it should pay for itself in the end. I was going on the premise that this global slowdown would not support robust economic growth at this point in time. I would love to be wrong. Higher taxes seems to be inevitable to me, since fewer people have income and business profits are lackluster. This time doesn't remind me of the 50's or 60's. Honest question: If we spend and spend to get this economy moving and gaining momemtun and creating all sorts of jobs--will it just automatically happen as a result of the spending? Is it possible that things are just too screwed up to do enough good right now? Is there an economist in the house?

Ex-alderman Steve

"Honest question: If we spend and spend to get this economy moving and gaining momemtun and creating all sorts of jobs--will it just automatically happen as a result of the spending? Is it possible that things are just too screwed up to do enough good right now? Is there an economist in the house?"

I guess it depends on what we spend and spend and spend it on. If we borrow and borrow and spend and spend to pursue stupid policies involving the physical occupation of entire countries in the Middle East while creating bogus financial instruments that just create paper that we insist represent wealth, then yeah...we can probably count on there not being much economically to show for it other than whizzy Predator drone technology and a steadily degrading living standard for most of us.

On the other hand, were we to borrow and borrow and spend and spend on putting high-quality education (from pre-K to college) within reach of every American child, investing heavily in researching energy alternatives to fossil fuels, and investing in more efficient transportation, energy, and telecommunications infrastructure, then we've got a shot at building a wealth creation model we can all profit from. (And yes, we spend some of those profits on paying down the debt we incurred getting the economy creating real wealth again.)

Nothin', as they say, comes from nothin'...

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