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Voodoo Poodoo

In 1981- National Debt – a bit more than $1 trillion.
In 1988- National Debt – a bit less than $4 trillion.

trickle downWhen campaigning against Ronald Reagan, George the Father rightly coined the phrase Voodoo Economics to define supply side economics. That reducing taxes (primarily for wealthy individuals and corporations) cause revenues, employment, savings and wages to rise is just so much Poodoo. Conservatives can juice up numbers to pretend differently, but one number they cannot fake; Reagan’s supply side economic plan more than tripled the national debt, causing us twenty years later paying twenty cents on every tax dollar to pay that dumb idea off. Cowboy George has just done the same again, twice!

Dear Rack

I just do not understand this NAFTA business. I can’t imagine why the United States would want to join Canada and Mexico in an organization so men could have sex with underage boys. What kind of countries are our neighbors anyway? It is so disgusting I don’t know why anyone would even talk about it. Even Rush Limbaugh is for it. Doesn’t he have a woman in his life to help with his urges?

Emily Litella, NY, NY

Economics 101

Jite’s HR 2009 – Any chief executive officer, or board member of any corporation who votes or directs in any way the movement of that corporation’s operations, entire or in part, to a foreign country, shall upon disposition of that vote or direction, immediately lose his or her American citizenship and be deported to the aforementioned country.

The core of the conservative economic debate is that the 270 million individuals of America know better than the government on what to spend their hard earned money on, which is:

12 packs,
$250 tennis shoes,
$350 NBA jackets,
900 numbers,
The American Spectator,
Big Macs,
Buns of Steel,
dime bags,
Enron stock,
extended warranties,
Frito Lay products,
gold chains,
golf carts,
leaf blowers,
nose rings,
NRA dues,
Power Apps,
red ties,
SKS semiautomatics,
rhino rounds,
time share condos,
The Weekly World News,
whole life policies
and Pez.

Do the Math

Never lose sight of the connection between supermarket tabloids, professional wrestling, evangelism and supply side economics.

To be elected in America, no matter from what party, the candidates have no choice but to year after year pledge to lower taxes further and further. We have become the nation of Ken and Barbie, looking good but very poor at the math.

All but one of the thirty odd gubernatorial races in 2002 had as the central issue billions of dollars in state deficits, with all candidates pledging to reduce taxes or at least not raise taxes. Then with the GOP in control of all branches of government, their first order of business was to make last year’s tax cuts for the wealthy permanent and do it all over again! With those tax breaks already benefiting mostly the wealthy will come reductions in capital gains taxes (giving breaks to the wealthy), removing taxes from stock dividends (giving breaks to the wealthy) and the elimination of the so called Death Tax (which gives breaks to only the wealthy.)

That last one, the Inheritance Tax, is the delineator of just how well the conservative propaganda of tax and spend big government has worked in clouding the minds of most Americans. As it stands, there are no inheritance taxes on $700,000 or less with that non-taxable figure rising to $2 million over the next few years. The conservative propaganda is to base it all on the poor American farmers losing their farms to the IRS. It’s a canard, for those few instances can be easily dealt with outside of eliminating estate taxes. The GOP will eliminate inheritance taxes, affecting the richest .1% of the population. And eliminate it to the cheers of people making $25,000 a year who on their parent’s death may get Mom’s wedding ring and Dad’s second hand Buick. What silly people we have become.

And all this borrowing and tax breaking Cowboy George is dishing out to the top of the stack are only going to make matters worse in every respective state. And remember, as taxes go down, they are redistributed within energy bills, water bills, phone bills and more unemployment. And most Americans joyfully run out to pull the levers for those sticking it to them the hardest. No sacrifice is too great to be able to buy 100 assault rifles a month and give nothing to the community at all. It is what America has become.

Taxation Without Representation!

“We can have democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can’t have both.” Louis Brandeis

I printed a one-page version of the Declaration of Independence to lay on the kitchen table in case anyone around here got it in their head to read rather than watch. The result of course was it was only touched by one set of human hands, my own. Rather than reading the backs of cereal boxes as I spooned up my breakfast, I read the thing a few times. Something surprised me. This document, calling for a war for independence consists of three initial paragraphs, a list of grievances directed at King George III, a closing paragraph and of course the infamous signatures. Contrary to what many would have you believe, taxes are mentioned only once, seventeenth in the list of 24 grievances. “For [a foreign power – England] imposing taxes on us without our consent.” Nothing at all about taxes being thievery or evil.

Class Incomes Defined

“Someone making from $300K to $750K a year. That does not make me rich. That does not make me middle class. In my opinion, that makes me lower middle class, when I see anyone above $750K that is upper middle class.” Fred Heineman (R – Clueless in N.C.)

This is one of my favorite quotes from the Contract On America days when Representative Heineman finally cleared up this whole class thing. Make sure you understand that Fred takes a $50K a year police pension along with his $133K salary from Congress (including top notch free national health care and every other employee benefit known to man). I must thank Fred for making the Republican mindset so absolutely clear. And you know, just that fast, I no longer personally know one single member of the middle class.

Your Federal Tax Bill

“When crap becomes valuable, the poor will be born without a wholes.” Henry Miller

If we really want to stop those with the most money controlling our elected officials, all we have to do is each spend $4 a year to fund public campaign financing – which the Republicans will never let happen. The figures below were from around 1996, though these percentages vary from year to year, the hierarchy has not changed much since Ronald Reagan tripled the national debt:

Military Expenditures 25.8%
Interest on the debt 23.2%
Federal pensions 6.5%
Education and training 5.4%
Veterans Benefits 3.7%
Intelligence 2.8%
Transportation 2.5%
Food stamps 2.5%
Unemployment benefits 2.3%
AFDC 1.7%
Earned income tax credit 1.5%
HUD 1.4%
Foreign aid 1.3%
Space flight 1.2%
Nuclear weapons 1.2%
Tax collection .8%
Farm subsidies .7%
Pollution control .6%
Federal Law enforcement .6%
Conservation .5%
Disaster relief .3%
Parks .3%
Federal prisons .3%
Congress .2%
Public Broadcasting .02%
White House .02%
Misc. smaller items 10%

Social Security and Medicare are not listed as its pay-in/pay-out. But if considered taxes, they would be listed below the interest on the debt.

Republican Tax Lies

The United States’ overall average tax rate is 30%, less than any industrialized nation.

I just closed out on TURBO TAX on the computer. At the end comes up all sorts of IRS facts. The average federal tax rate for a family of four in the $60k range is 9.7% (for the average $35k income its much lower). Add 7% for social security, 3% for property taxes (though only 60% are home owners who pay that), another 4% for state taxes (though 13 states have no state taxes), add 3% for sales taxes (adjusted for what products are taxed), exaggerate and add another 4% for gas taxes, licenses, tolls, and permits and it’s about a 30% overall tax rate no matter how you look at it. The lowest tax rate in the industrialized world!!

Tom DeLay and thousands of Republicans like him scream day and night, even while they sleep, that our tax rate is over 50%. Listen to any AM talk show and you will hear caller after caller say they work until August or September just to pay taxes. All these people are liars. In fact, just on this issue alone, these people tell more lies in one day than Bill Clinton did in eight years.

The issue is the mainstay of Republican ideology. It is so politically charged, due to our universal personal selfishness (we do not like that term so we have renamed it rugged individualism), that neither the media nor politicians from any direction are able to jump off the wagon.

So why are all these Republicans looking us in the eye and lying about it? Well first off is that they can get away with it, for taxation and the laws about it are a very complicated matter, and this is not a nation of rocket scientists (rocket scientists immigrated from either Germany, Russia or Israel). And secondly those telling these lies are in the top 5% of income earners. So when they say we, they do not mean you.

Death and Taxes

If you make less than $75,000 a year and vote Republican, you are a moron.

The angst reverberates across the land; the yellow dog Democrats, the Marxist Liberals, the Environmentalist Whackos, the Nazi Feminists, the damn Socialists and the Goddamn Communists are in control of our government and the media to destroy democracy, capitalism and God by forcing us to suffer the greatest scourge mankind has ever known, The redistribution of wealth (read taxes). There is some truth to that for a redistribution of wealth is indeed going on, they just have it backwards and incorrectly named. The central problem in America today is the disparity of wealth, with the money being redistributed upwards rather than downwards. Real dollar wages have been dropping for a generation, the poor are poorer, and per capita there are more of them than anytime since the early ‘60’s (mostly women and children). The conservative answer to all that is simple: cut funding for their education, job training, health care, student loans, housing and food. The idea is to force the poor into sustainable jobs that exist only in bootstrap speeches, while moving the monetary responsibility of the jobless, the indigent, the old and infirm onto the backs of already stretched state, county, city budgets and extended family incomes.

Not to worry! Conservatives have the answer to that too! [This is hard to believe]. Eliminate the minimum wage so employers can pay them less, which will create more jobs that cannot sustain a single person yet alone a family. At the same time they push that odious crap, they work every angle to give the wealthy more tax breaks, more disposable income and to give employers totalitarian control over employees. What do they give back in return? [This is even harder to believe]. They give these people more prisons to house each other, more guns to kill each other, and more Jesus to get them into Heaven after they’ve either been shot or executed.

The GOP has finally beaten the ancient curse of death & taxes. They whip up the hate between the classes; keep the lowest in areas far rom where Republicans live, arm them to the hilt with enough technology to kill each other quickly and efficiently, make sure there is a liquor store and a hockshop selling guns on every corner, and tell them everything is fine because no one really dies, they all go to Heaven where everything is just hunky-dory. Where there are no taxes and everyone is issued a .44 God & Wesson to keep it that way.

Class Warfare

“It is erroneous thinking to say that a tax break for someone working from paycheck to paycheck is more important than it is to wealthy individuals.” William F. Buckley tells a whopper.

William F. Buckley’s whopper here expresses well the base mentality of conservatives; that a second Mercedes is just as important to a rich man as a tank of gas is to a poor working stiff to put in his ‘67 Buick to get to both his minimum wage jobs on time. Buckley and the rest of these conservative a wholes actually believe that, it is the nature of the Beast.

As this crap washes across America, it builds as conservatives take more and more control of not only the three branches of government but the media as well. So successful have they been in their propaganda that now even that guy in that ‘67 Buick with the two minimum wage jobs believes them.

A few months after the impeachment, the Republicans passed legislation to enable extremely wealthy individuals to each own as much as 35% of the entire media market. Imagine Murdoch, Robertson and Limbaugh divvying the whole shebang up between them. They’ll have all the guys in their ‘67 Buicks believing their bilge. I’ve never before experienced such a degree in blind acceptance of propaganda as I have over these last two decades. I am dumbfounded that my fellow Americans are so dumbfounded.

Great Men’s words on Unemployment

“A man who has no office to go to – I don’t care who he is – is a trial of which you can have no conception.” G.B. Shaw

Though poverty is an important factor in the breakup of the family, the fall to drug abuse, alcohol addiction and crime, it is unemployment which is the most serious factor regarding such concerns. As in both Russia and China (where free market economies have recently begun in various stages) unemployment is the most immediate outcome; with drugs, gangs, and crime coming as never before experienced. The connection between various factors regarding moral decline and unemployment can also be seen in statistics here in the United States.

“Not only our future economic soundness but the very soundness of our democratic institutions depends on the determination of our government to give employment to idle men.” FDR

The point is not that free market economies are bad, but too much of anything is not good for the soul, especially sitting back and allowing the odious Lassie Farts foul our society.

“You take my life when you do take the means whereby I live.” William Shakespeare

Our hard-core unemployed is not listed, but with official rates between 4% and 8%, the overall reality is about 10%, the historic result of a capitalist system. The trick is not as the Republicans would have you believe, dropping large smelly turds upon that segment of our society, but accepting it as the price that must be paid and then having the government deal with it in some effective manner.

“When we’re unemployed, we’re called lazy; when the whites are unemployed it’s called a depression.” Jesse Jackson

Facilitate the movement of people in and out of the unemployment pool so it does not become a way of life for the few, but a short-term process for the many. Which of course results in the cry of “COMMUNISM!”

Couple sustainable entitlements and daycare to education, training, counseling, and workfare. Which of course results in screams of MARXISM!

Use the tax code to hurt corporations who move their labor pool offshore. Which of course results in screams of “SOCIALISM.”

Move our criminal system regarding drugs from one that creates more hardened criminals and single mothers, to one of rehabilitation and community service. Which of course results in screeches of LIBERALS ARE SOFT ON CRIME!

“Unemployment insurance is a pre-paid vacation for freeloaders.” Ronald Reagan

With the dark tide now up around our eyebrows, nothing will be done about any of this other than putting more people in more jails until we surpass even the Soviet Gulag and the Third Reich in that respect.

Capital Gains

Republicans bring up eliminating the Capital Gains tax in the House most every year. The process has many names; supply side economics, trickle down, tinkle down, the yellow rain and voodoo economics to name a few. Its lead pundit spokesman is Robert Novak who never shuts up about it. And what would be the result of eliminating the capital gains tax? Where would all that extra money the wealthy get, go? Corporate takeovers, corporate lobbying, union busting, moving jobs offshore, moving capital offshore, downsizing, more reduction in wages, more unemployment, more homelessness, more loss of job security, meaner streets with more guns and billions more in public relations money to further the process. This is not conjecture, it’s history.

It’s the stuff of revolution and the cause of the rise of totalitarian communism. A human problem that has been with us for centuries; from feudalism to the mob of the French Revolution, from Dickens and the Industrial Revolution to the robber barons of 19th Century America, from the Great Depression to today’s Republican Congress. We in America now have the greatest disparity of wealth in the industrialized world, which the Republican Party does everything in their power to make worse. It’s the nature of the Beast.