Tag Archives: taxes

Republicans Will Have to Swallow Tax Hikes

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As I’ve said previously, I hate tax increases, but I’ll settle if a 10:1 deal is reached.  Ten dollars of spending cuts, including welfare state cuts, for every one dollar raised in revenue.  It’s a rational deal.  If we can retake the Senate, and maintain our majority in the House; then perhaps we can discuss making other changes more palatable for the job creating and investing class.  However, in this brief time where I am open to such compromise, the chances of such a deal is unlikely.  But I’m still holding an optimistic grin.

Yes, Democrats will get what they want of we go off the cliff – and Republicans will be blamed for it. Joel Pollak at Breitbart described how Republicans were failing ‘negotiation 101.’  In his November 27 post, he wrote that Republicans need to focus on:

Framing the debate. The negotiations are now about the meaning of “revenue,” rather than about how to reduce runaway federal spending. President Obama says “revenue” and means increases in tax rates for the wealthy; when House Speaker John Boehner uses the same term, he means cutting loopholes and deductions while keeping rates the same. But both sides are talking about making the rich pay more to close the gap.

Aside from the fact that the wealthiest Americans bear a disproportionate share of the federal income tax burden–disproportionate even to their disproportionate wealth–and the fact that taxing the rich at a 100% rate would not solve the deficit and debt problem, there is a principle at stake here: that the government does not have an inherent claim to wealth and income that Americans have earned through their own labor and risk.

Arguably, the wealthy–like the rest of us–owe only for what provides the opportunity for all to earn and enjoy income in safety. Furthermore, too much of today’s public spending hurts the public–creating waste, reinforcing cronyism, and building dependency. But Republicans lost the chance to frame the debate around spending last year when they dropped the “Cut, Cap, and Balance” plan after obstruction from the Democratic Senate.

It’s true.  The job creating and investing class pay a disproportionate share of the taxes, but Mitt Romney lost.  President Obama campaigned heavily on raising taxes on the wealthy, and he won that argument on November 6.  This was due to Republicans not making the argument against such hikes.  Furthermore, there wasn’t even a single ad in the ’12 cycle that hit Obama on his hypocrisy surrounding the Bush tax cuts.  He extended them in December of 2010, which was a tacit agreement of Republican economic policies, regardless of the ‘hostage’ talk – which was pure drivel. I agree with Pollak that the government is taxing too much of Americans’ hard-earned money, and that it’s immoral for members to say that those monies are government property, but there was an election about this – and we lost.

In short, the reason why Republicans will be forced to raise taxes is due to the fact that we have poor leadership and bad messaging.

Media and culture. Democrats blocked “Cut, Cap, and Balance”–but the Tea Party was blamed for obstructionism. Obama destroyed a grand bargain by insisting on increased tax rates–but House Republicans suffered more media criticism when ratings agencies lowered the U.S. credit rating a few days later. Today, more Americans blame the GOP for the fiscal cliff impasse even though the sequester was Obama’s original proposal.

More is at work here than simple media bias. The Democrats have consciously pursued a media and cultural strategy to reinforce the idea that Republicans are the guardians of the rich–even though the wealthiest are actually a Democratic constituency. In the summer and early fall of 2011, for example, after the downgrade and with the economy creating net zero jobs, Occupy Wall Street began–and the Democrats latched on.

The movement failed, but Democrats salvaged the “99% vs. 1% meme,” setting a trap that Mitt Romney fell into with his comments about the “47 percent” last spring. Obama has also made the effect of spending cuts visceral for many Americans; Republicans have failed to describe the cost of debt in similar terms. That media and cultural edge allows Obama to rig the game in his favor. It’s time Republicans found an answer.

Here is the answer is simple.  It’s time to have a Reagan throwback.  Not necessarily on everything during the Reagan administration, but reconnecting with  middle class Americans.  Conservatives and Reaganites were a coalition of blue collar, middle class, ordinary, and right-of-center Americans – who took a liking to a lot of Republican policies.  For example, it explains the Arkansas bleeding of Democratic voters until Bill Clinton came into the picture.

Shifting away from Wall Street will also have a positive impact on our Hispanic outreach, since Latinos view Republicans as the party of the rich.  Yes, it’s an incorrect assumption, but it’s not to say that we can do better with the folks in the American middle class.  It’s time to challenge Democrats’ core constituency.  I’m not saying we should be anti-wealthy, or engage in class warfare, but we need to find candidates who are popular both on ‘main street’ and ‘Wall Street.’  Let’s face it.  Wall Street isn’t, and shouldn’t, come off scott-free from the ’08 financial meltdown.  On the other hand, they didn’t deserve Dodd-Frank either.

Coming back to the fiscal cliff, Republicans should insist on entitlement cuts.  After all, the president agrees with this position as well.  It’s also put him at odds with his fellow party members – forty-two of which signed on to a deal that called for zero cuts to the welfare state.  Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), in Napoleonic stature, has found her Waterloo by leading a coalition of cliff jumpers in the U.S. Senate.  To counter this, Republicans may have to take flak from the base by insisting that tax rates only rise for millionaires.  There is a winnable argument to be made that $250,000 isn’t rich when all of the mitigating elements are factored in, such as location, utilities, property taxes, state income taxes, sales tax etc.  For example, urban residents making this kind of money, and they should be congratulated on it, don’t feel rich once all the bills are paid – and they’re right.  The GOP has a winning narrative in this period between elections.

On the other hand, they can fight to keep the 2% cut in payroll taxes.  James C. Capretta wrote in National Review on November 27 that “this tax cut lowered the Social Security payroll tax from about 12 to 10 percent on all earned income (up to a limit of just over $100,000 annually). In January, if the cut is not extended, all 155 million American workers will see this two-percentage-point hike in their taxes. The Obama administration is ready to let it expire because it fears a long-term cut might create pressure for additional Social Security reform — which is precisely why the GOP should support keeping payroll taxes, as well as income taxes, as low as possible.”

Concerning entitlement reform, Capretta added that:

There should be no deal on long-term taxes without far-reaching reforms to health-entitlement programs. And what’s far-reaching? For starters, the entirety of Obamacare should be on the table for revision and retrenchment. The law sets in motion the largest entitlement expansion in a generation. It’s far better to scale the program back now before it gets started than to wait and hope it can be scaled back later.

Republican governors have substantial leverage in these negotiations because they can opt out of the Medicaid expansion in Obamacare, thanks to the Supreme Court. If 25 or so Republican governors refuse to put more people into an unreformed Medicaid program, it will put tremendous pressure on the Obama administration, which is desperate to see the Medicaid expansion occur during the president’s second term. The congressional GOP should use this leverage to move Medicaid toward fixed financing and maximum state flexibility.

Most importantly, if there are any cuts, they need to be immediate.  Conservatives stress this because in such fiscal deals during the Reagan and Bush 41 days, they were promised –  but never implemented.  While those on the left, like Matt Yglesias, think a grand bargain is impossible, and negotiations towards one is hurting the country.

Jennifer Stefano, PA State Director for Americans for Prosperity, stated in a news release on November 20 that she thinks:

 …it is funny people are criticizing the president for being abroad in Asia during this crisis. The President can be abroad in Asia and do exactly what he has been doing in the White House; which is absolutely nothing to prevent the economic calamity that will come on all Americans because of his fiscal policies..at the end of the day there are issues.  And on the issues there are things that are right and there are things that are wrong.  President Obama’s tax hikes are going to continue to crucify small businesses in this country… along with Obamacare, it is a crushing blow to the entrepreneurial spirit and as well as to the bottom line.

Matt Kibbe, President and CEO of FreedomWorks, aptly noted in Forbes on November 29 that such reforms to get our fiscal house in order will take more time, and that Congress should extend all the tax cuts for one more year.  This would provide a buffer from the cliff, and give representatives the necessary cushion to come up with a comprehensive long terms plan to tackle our debt and deficit.

This is why FreedomWorks has activated its grassroots members to call Congress with a two-part message. 1) Keep your promise on the sequester savings. 2) Pass a one-year extension of all current tax rates, so America has time to pass serious tax and entitlement reforms.

By the way, there is some good news hiding in all the dust of the “fiscal cliff” fracas. The coalition of committed fiscal conservatives in Congress has grown in the past two elections. Constitutional conservatives in the House held on to the historic gains of 2010, while the Senate just picked up three principled fiscal conservatives in Ted Cruz, Jeff Flake, and Deb Fischer to replace GOP establishment types Kay Bailey Hutchison, Jon Kyl, and Olympia Snowe.

This new generation of legislative entrepreneurs is re-populating Washington with innovative energy. Expect these principled leaders to put real specifics on the table, craft thoughtful budget solutions, and carve pathways to needed tax and entitlement reforms next year – all things Senate Democrats haven’t seen fit to do for the past 3 years.

Fiscal conservatives are once again at the table, but we won’t bargain with ourselves against an arbitrary deadline. Your move, Harry Reid.

Extending the tax cuts for one more year – I’m for it! However, there’s a fat chance that will happen.  Reid, Pelosi, and liberal Democrats won’t back a deal with such extensions.  As I’ve said, politically, Republicans have little to stand on without getting blasted by the media, and the American people.  We need to stand our ground with the spending cuts for sure.  No compromise there, but concerning taxes – they’ll have to go up.  It’s time to face reality for now.  Come 2014, hopefully, we’ll have a comprehensive tax reduction and reform plan that is palatable to everyone, and we can return to a sense of fiscal sanity.

Obama’s Plan: Tax Now, Cut Later

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Obama has demonstrated zero flexibility on his insistence that higher tax rates for the wealthy kick in on January 1, 2013.

To those familiar with “progressive” modus operandi, it is not surprising that the White House and their “progressive” political allies envision Medicare and other “entitlement” savings happening ten to twenty years from now.

This is what “progressives” call a “balanced approach.”

The same “balanced approach” “progressives” used when they promised Ronald Reagan three dollars in future spending cuts for every dollar of tax increases.  The same “balanced approach” “progressives” used when they hood-winked George H. W. Bush into violating his “Read my lips, no new taxes” pledge with a similar two to one offer.

Reagan, Bush 41 and the American taxpayer have yet to see those promised spending cuts.

In the current “fiscal cliff” negotiations, Republicans who are willing to accept “revenue” increases as a part of a deal with “progressive” Democrats in exchange for promised spending cuts that will happen sometime in the future are stupid, in denial or both.  How many times do Republicans need to make this same mistake before they learn?

“Duh…as a kid I burned my finger every time I stuck it into the fire, but this time that won’t happen…duh…yup…uh huh…duh…ooooh…aaaah…look…something shiny…duh.”

By whatever means, no matter how much “new revenue” Republicans agree to provide, it will never be enough for “progressives”.  No matter how completely Republican squishes cave to “progressive” demands for more “revenue”, it will work against them in both the short and long term.

The economy will tank and Republican will be blamed by “progressives”, while being seen as unprincipled jellyfish willing to break promises made to their constituents in order to “deal” with those who have no interest in compromise.

The “progressive” motive is not to make a deal.  It is not to enact legislation that will stimulate private sector economic growth.  History instructs that lowering tax rates stimulates the private sector and increases economic growth while resulting in additional revenue to the IRS.  To “progressives” this is irrelevant.

They are far more concerned with what they call “fairness.”  To “progressives”, fairness means confiscating money through taxes from productive people who create wealth and redistributing it to the unproductive.

History shows that tax increases stifle economic growth, which leads to reduced revenue collection.  Budgetary imbalances grow worse and deficits continue to explode at an increasingly alarming rate.  By following this path, it is all but guaranteed that the American government will raise the debt ceiling again and experience another credit downgrade.   U.S. national debt will not go down and GDP growth will become virtually non-existent.

Eventually the federal government will need to find “other revenue” to fund its big spending operation.

With over twenty three million people unable to find work and almost fifty million living on the dole, government will try to invent ways to fund the “progressive” Party’s dependent class.

The retirement savings, IRAs and 401Ks of every American are in “progressive’s” sights.  Americans believe their 401ks and IRAs are private property, safe from government seizure.

These retirement savings are already heavily controlled by government regulation.  Given the track record of “progressives” it is no stretch to realize that trillions of dollars in private savings are threatened by “progressives” who see them as a way to finance the national debt their big government socialist programs have created.

When Social Security began it was a compulsory savings program administered by the federal government.  When someone retired, they would get back what they had paid in plus interest.  It only took until 1939 for a “progressive” Democratic Congress to begin using a pay-as-you-go financing method, meaning money currently being paid into the Social Security System is financing current beneficiaries.  At first it was worked.  In 1950 sixteen people were paying into the system for each person receiving benefits.  In the not so distant future there will be two people making payments for each check.

What happened to all the money millions of Americans have had stolen over the course of their lives from their paycheck by government mandate?  What will happen if the government seizes private savings?

If Republicans ever wish to be taken seriously, they must stand on principle.  For the future of the American Republic, backing down is not an option.

http://mjfellright.wordpress.com/2012/11/29/obamas-plan-tax-now-cut-later/

Warning: This show is addictive

How Falling Off The Fiscal Cliff Impacts You

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I’ll say it again, Democrats want to go off the fiscal cliff.  They’ll get their tax increases – $600 billion dollars worth– their revenue increases, and cuts to defense, which has been a goal of theirs for the past ten years.  Goodbye Bush tax cuts, Hello Obama tax hikes.  With the fledgling coalition of ‘cliff jumpers’ led by Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), let’s see how the impact will affect us who aren’t on Capitol Hill.

According to Paul Katzeff at Investors Business Daily, he wrote on November 16 that ending the Bush tax cuts will also be detrimental to the middle class.  Contrary to popular belief, the Bush tax cuts has beneficial mechanisms, like credits for lower income households and reductions to the marriage penalty, all of which help the middle class.  While conservatives know this, it’s hard to break the deafening noise of the liberal media.

Katzeff added:

The typical American family will be hit with an extra $3,222 in taxes, the [Tax] Foundation says. That’s based on a two-child family with median income of $74,563. The tax increase will amount to 4.32% of that family’s income. The Foundation’s analysis compares that family’s tax bill in 2011 — the latest year that an AMT patch existed — to what it would be in 2013, assuming all Bush and Obama tax cuts expire, the AMT remains unfixed and the 2% payroll tax cut also expires. The AMT keeps hitting more middle-income taxpayers because the standard deduction and certain itemized deductions such as state and local taxes do not reduce its bite. Also, its exemption does not grow automatically with inflation.

Families in high-individual-income states such as New Jersey would be hit hard by currently slated AMT changes. The AMT exemption level would revert to what it was 12 years ago: $45,000 for married joint filers vs. $74,450 in 2011. And credits such as the child tax credit would no longer be allowed to offset AMT liability.

But, contrary to political conventional wisdom, families in lower-income states, like Arkansas, would also take an outsized hit. That’s because three tax cuts that everyone will lose — the cut in the child tax credit, end of the 10% bracket and reduced standard deduction for married filers — are fixed increases that do not hinge on income. As a percentage of income, those increases will be biggest for lower-income families.

New Jersey is set to take the largest blow, with a looming tax increase on the typical family totaling $6,933.

As more Republicans flee Grover Norquist, Founder of Americans for Tax Reform, and his anti-tax pledge – it’s a forgone conclusion that revenue increases will occur IF there is a deal.  However, Republicans should ask themselves why swallow such a demand when it’s been over 1300 days since the Democratic Congress has passed a budget.  It’s not logical or moral for Republicans to cave to the soulless, rotten liberal cadre of robbers this easily during the negotiations.

The only acceptable outcome, which I would still be unhappy with, is a deal that calls for at least eight dollars in spending cuts for every new dollar in revenues.  The ten-to-one deal is even more “palatable.”  I hate tax increases – but the outcome of the election will make it hard for conservatives to hold their ground.  Yes, the Tea Party Caucus was re-elected, with the exception of a couple of members, and Obama was re-elected by the 47% who don’t pay taxes, so there isn’t a mandate – but the clock is ticking.

Concerning revenue, Republicans should push to raise the rates on those making $500,000 or more.  I’m not a fan of Warren Buffett at all – but his plan to increase the rates on the incomes of those people is reasonable for now.

  • First, he only calls for raising taxes on Americans earning more than $500,000 a year, not the $250,000 that President Obama is focused on. Families who earn $250,000 and live in major cities justifiably point out that this salary does not leave them feeling “rich.” So, raising the definition of rich would go a long way toward making these tax hikes more palatable.
  • Next, he calls for a minimum 30% tax on Americans making $1 million to $10 million or more, regardless of how this income is generated. One of the most egregious elements of the tax code is that some of America’s highest earners pay much lower tax rates than average earners, because they generate their income from capital gains or dividends or have figured out how to shelter it by taking advantage of various loopholes. This tax would ensure that most income is treated the same way.

Americans living in urban areas, with rent and other utilities, see their $250,000 income dwindle rapidly, and don’t feel rich.  They’re right.  As George Will aptly noted, a Chicago school superintendent with twenty years experience, who is married to a police captain with twenty years experience is almost rich within the tax increase parameters of the Obama administration.

As I’ve said, I hate raising taxes, but we cannot be the party that is blamed for going off the cliff.  Democrats have planted their flag on the side of willingly going off.  That’s perverse, and wrong.  Let’s be the party that said NO!  We’re the part of no.  We don’t want to cut defense by the hundreds of billions.  We don’t want $600 billion in tax increases for the American taxpayer.  We have an opportunity to blunt the trauma of falling off the cliff.

However, I also understand the political ramifications if we do have a deal – and history hasn’t been to kind to us.  John Fund wrote today in National Review that:

many old Washington hands recall that Republicans agreed on tax-increase-for-spending-cuts deals in 1982 under Ronald Reagan and in 1990 under George H. W. Bush. These deals politically damaged the party in the short run, and they also proved to be bad policy. The 1982 budget deal, which promised seven dollars in spending cuts for every three dollars in tax increases, was never honored. Congress agreed to less than 27 cents in spending cuts for every dollar of tax increases, and President Reagan came to bitterly regret his decision to approve the deal. Ed Meese, Reagan’s senior counselor at the time and later his attorney general, recalls that the 1982 deal ‘was the worst domestic-policy mistake of the Reagan administration.’

So, this time Republicans must insist the cuts be enacted immediately.  Furthermore, I like the idea Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) has concerning transparency if a deal is reached.  A week-long debate on any aspect of the bill, including amendments, edits, and revisions.  All will be televised on C-SPAN for the public to see –  if they don’t fall asleep first.

Yet, we cannot forget back when “Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner admitted [last February] in congressional testimony that the administration lacks a long-term plan to deal with the nation’s soaring $16 trillion debt. “We’re not coming before you today to say we have a definitive solution to that long-term problem,” he told House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan. ‘What we do know is, we don’t like yours.”  I’ll try to temper my cynicism, but being optimistic about government is difficult.

I hope for a deal, but, at the same time, will start cashing out my investments in the stock market in preparation for the day of reckoning.

Line in the Sand

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Barack Obama stopped in Burma, which he insisted as a “diplomatic courtesy” on calling Myanmar (perhaps pronouncing Pakistan Pahhhkeeeestaan no longer makes him cool enough for the UN), where he managed to repeatedly mispronounce the name of Aung San Suu Kyi, the Nobel winner who led the fight for a free, democratic Burma.  If that was not embarrassing enough for America, Obama also managed to botch the name of President Thein Sein, his official Burma host.

Were any corpse-men around to carry off members of the press?  Those members of the institutionalized “progressive” left who were mortified and humiliated by each faux pas?

You can bet NBC, ABC, CBS and CNN failed to report the botching…The New York Times too.

Had such a diplomatic faux pas been committed by a Conservative president the “mainstream media” would be screaming their outrage and leaping on the ridicule bandwagon.

http://www.whitehousedossier.com/2012/11/19/obama-repeatedly-mispronounces-aung-san-suu-kyi/

Of course the New York Times was too busy distorting the truth with Paul Krugman’s Op-Ed fairytale “The Twinkie Manifesto” to accurately report the failings of their dear, beloved leader.

Krugman’s mind, displaying clear symptoms of acute “progressive thinking” disorder, made a remarkable leap to the conclusion that Conservative orthodoxy believes the pathway to prosperity lies in demeaning workers and coddling the rich.

He dismissed the Simpson-Bowles Commission for accurately concluding that lower tax rates lead to lower deficits.  Overlooking historical evidence to the contrary, Krugman concluded the healthy American economy during the 1950s was a product of the 91 percent tax rate on top bracket income earners.  He fostered the preposterous notion that the high-tax rates of the decade that followed World War II were responsible for America’s economic growth.

The economic growth of the 1950s was due primarily to the fact that during World War II the rest of the industrialized world had been bombed into rubble, especially their manufacturing capacities.  While the rest of the world was recovering from that condition, America enjoyed a decade of prosperity because American industries had no serious competition.  The world bought American goods because nobody else made much of anything worth buying.  With such conditions leading to an American economic boom, the economy was able to sustain itself and grow despite the unnaturally high tax rates imposed on business; rates that had financed the titanic war effort.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/19/opinion/krugman-the-twinkie-manifesto.html?ref=opinion&_r=0

Krugman’s economic insanity was matched by that of Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, who said on Friday that Congress should remove legal limits on government borrowing and lift America’s debt limit to infinity.

During an interview on Bloomberg TV, when asked by “Political Capital” host Al Hunt Geithner if “we ought to just eliminate the debt ceiling,” Geithner replied: “Oh, absolutely.”

http://cnsnews.com/news/article/treasury-secretary-geithner-lift-debt-limit-infinity

So, according to Paul Krugman of The New York Times and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, America taxing businesses into oblivion and eliminating all restraints on spending will lead to economic prosperity.

The “progressive” insanity does not stop at America’s shores.

In Congress the Obama administration is on the ropes for having administration appointees change the CIA talking points regarding the 9/11 terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya.

According to Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), chairman of the House intelligence committee, “There was not an intelligence failure.  The intelligence community had it right, and they had it right early. What happened was it worked its way up through the system of the so-called talking points, which everyone refers to, and then it went up to what’s called a deputy’s committee…It went to the so-called deputy’s committee, that’s populated by appointees from the administration.  That’s where the narrative changed.  And so how that thing got back to (Susan) Rice, I think, is probably another question.”

Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.), the vice chair of the Senate intelligence committee, said that he had tried to discover who changed the talking points:

“At the hearing we had on Thursday and Friday, we had every leader of the intelligence community there, including folks from the State Department, the FBI — everybody there was asked, ‘Do you know who made these changes?’ And nobody knew. The only entity that reviewed the talking points that was not there was the White House.  So, you know, I don’t know whether — what they said yesterday is exactly right or not. But, what I do know is that every member of the intelligence community says that references to al Qaeda were removed by somebody, and they don’t know who. And references to attacks versus demonstrations were removed by somebody.”

http://cnsnews.com/news/article/house-intel-chair-appointees-administration-changed-rices-talking-points

While the Obama re-election campaign and White House operatives followed the Alinsky model that the ends justify the means and changed talking points to support the false narrative coming out of the Democratic National Convention that Al Qaeda had been smashed, the Middle East drifted into more dangerous territory.

Not only did Hamas resume launching hundreds of missiles and rockets into Israel, some of which were  Iranian made,but they were joined in that effort by Egypt.

In response, Israel readied forces to launch and ‘significantly expand’ an offensive if necessary.

On Sunday, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a stiff warning to Hamas.  He declared the Israeli army was prepared to widen its Gaza offensive significantly.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry reinforced Netanyahu’s statements by confirming that if rocket attacks persisted, a ground offensive into Gaza was likely.  Speaking to France 24, Ygal Palmor stated that “Our sole aim of this offensive is to make Hamas stop firing rockets. We have used air strikes but if that’s not enough then we may contemplate ground operations as well.”

http://www.france24.com/en/20121118-Israel-gaza-egypt-palestine-violence-peace

To round out the insanity of the left, the war on Christianity continues in America.

The City of Santa Monica is being sued over freedom of speech after choosing to end the city’s holiday tradition of displaying Nativity scenes.

Said Hunter Jameson, head of the nonprofit Santa Monica Nativity Scene Committee that is behind the law suit: “It’s a sad, sad commentary on the attitudes of the day that a nearly 60-year-old Christmas tradition is now having to hunt for a home, something like our savior had to hunt for a place to be born because the world was not interested.”

National atheist groups, responding to Catholic activism against women’s healthcare issues imposed by Obamacare, paid for newspaper ads and TV spots in their latest salvo in the war against Christianity in America.

Atheist tactics have shifted to an insistence that their views be given equal placement alongside holiday displays conveying the Christian message.  Previously, atheists had sought to enforce separation of church and state via the courts.

http://www.gopusa.com/news/2012/11/19/atheists-intimidate-santa-monica-into-eliminating-nativity/?subscriber=1

The alleged leader of the free world is so reliant on his teleprompter that in the midst of an historic diplomatic mission he does not know what he is saying.  The eager, obedient lap-dogs in the “progressive” Party Pravda have joined with so-called academics to re-write American history in favor of their radical, anti-American agenda.  As it is happening, the Obama administration is revising history to suit their political needs because they know a criminally negligent media which places taking sides before reporting the truth will not challenge them.  America is speeding towards bankruptcy while the world becomes more unsafe and “progressives” offer no viable answers.  Despite the 75 percent of America who celebrate Christmas, they are being forced by aggressive fringe minorities to confront demands for a secular, multicultural society.

If ever there was a time for Conservatives to unite and draw a line in the sand against the encroachment of the institutionalized “progressive” left’s insanity, this is it.

http://mjfellright.wordpress.com/2012/11/20/line-in-the-sand/

Americans willing to pay higher taxes if spending cuts made

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A new Rasmussen Reports poll shows that a portion of respondents feel that higher taxes are acceptable, but only if real spending cuts are also made.

President Obama wants Congress to hike tax rates right now and have Congress discuss spending cuts at some later time. The reality being that the federal government will get more money to spend and will likely never make any deficit-reducing cuts. A pattern that has repeated for almost a century.

If the president and Congress agreed to a long-term plan to significantly reduce federal spending and the deficit, 42% of Likely U.S. Voters would be personally willing to pay “a bit more” in taxes to balance the budget if the spending cuts were not enough.

A telephone poll also showed that an equal 42% would not be willing to see tax increases even if there were assurances that real spending cuts had been made.

In 1982, President Reagan was offered a three-to-one ratio of spending cuts to tax increases by a Democratic Congress. While Reagan reluctantly agreed to one of the largest tax increases in history, shockingly, Congressional Democrats proceeded to not enact any spending cuts. Democrats got the tax hike they lobbied for while not living up to the spending cuts Reagan wanted.

Similar tactics were used in 1990 to get President Bush to agree to tax increases and the he got the same outcome – all taxes, no spending cuts.

So why should Americans or Republicans in the House and Senate fall for the same rhetoric? They shouldn’t, but likely will.

Democrats Want To Go Off The Fiscal Cliff

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During the president’s Nov. 14 news conference, he channeled the Sandy response as a “metaphor” for how the federal government should operate. “It’s been aggressive and strong and fast and robust and a lot of people have been helped because of it…that’s a pretty good metaphor for how I want federal government to operate generally, and I’m going to do everything I can to make sure it does,” said President Obama.  This is American liberalism.  The ignorance they have towards how government should operate still pervades their ranks today.  Government isn’t suppose to move fast, be aggressive, or be robust. It’s functions are few and defined, as stipulated by Madison – who championed the experiment of limited government that is the bedrock for our republic.

As such, we know the president wants to raise taxes on the job creating and investing class.  It’ll inhibit economic growth, and it’s effects on the overall economy will probably be de minimis at best.  All of his other policies have produced the same insipid results.  Why should this be any different, especially when the president feels that a 3% hike on people making $250,000 or more will have a serious impact on the federal debt and deficit.  George Will reiterated a good example on This Week highlighting the 250k illusion a while ago reiterating that a Chicago school superintendent of twenty years experience, who is married to a Chicago police captain of twenty years experience is almost rich in the eyes of the president.  Nevertheless, according to liberals, tax increases will save us from the fiscal cliff.

As we approach the fiscal cliff, the perverse characteristic that pervades this debate is that liberals want us to go off into the abyss.  If we do, they’ll get the tax increases, they’ll get the revenue, and they’ll get the defense cuts all liberals lust for with disconcerting enthusiasm.  David Brooks, who wasn’t acting like a squish for once, reiterated this view last week on the PBS NewsHour and NPR’s All Things Considered.  Furthermore, and most importantly, liberals and their entitlement programs – the last bastions of progressive legislative achievement – will remain intact.

 

My Prediction: Romney Wins Comfortably

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The day has arrived.  In about twenty-four hours, the stains of Barack Obama will be wiped clean and honor and dignity will be restored to The White House under President-elect Mitt Romney.  It hasn’t been an easy road.  Conservatives waged a brutal primary battle that left us with a scarred nominee – Romney – coming out of the gate to take on President Obama in the general.  However, he licked his wounds, redeployed his campaign assets, and was laser focused on Barack Obama’s miserable record of debt, deficits, and high unemployment.  As a result, he’s polling slightly ahead of the President on Election Eve, and I’m confident Governor Romney will be the next President of the United States.

Granted there were some bumps in the road.  The last week of August and the whole month of September were especially lackluster – but his resounding and decisive victory in the first, and most important, presidential debate altered the electoral map in a way liberals couldn’t imagine.  His surge in the polls with women decimated Obama’s double-digit lead amongst women, and Romney’s double-digit lead amongst independents will prove valuable in the generals, as well as the down ticket races in the House and Senate.  Right now, I have Gov. Romney winning the 2012 Election with 289 electoral votes to Obama’s 249.  Some pundits, like George Will, predict a 321 Electoral landslide for Mitt Romney, but I’m more reserved.

First, to even begin to contemplate such a mandate, Romney needs to win Pennsylvania – a state that hasn’t gone Republican since 1988.  While some polls show that the races is tied (Romney is shown trailing by 2-4 points on D+8 polls) – I’m just not ready to bet the mortgage on a state we have failed to lock up for almost a quarter century.  Granted, the 2011 county courthouse races were indicative that Democrats in the western part of the state – the bitter clingers who are mostly pro-life and pro-gun rights – were getting sick of liberal policies.  Republicans took Westmoreland County for the first time in fifty years.  Now, Republicans control 51 of the 67 counties in PA, with most of the inroads being in the western part of the state.  Republican media consultant Michael  Hudome wrote on The Daily Caller on Nov. 2 that “half of the NRA membership in the entire country is within a four-hour drive of Pittsburgh.”

Recent electoral results signal a Republican surge in the Commonwealth. Conservative Pat Toomey was elected to the Senate in 2010 despite the best efforts of the White House.

Republicans control 12 of Pennsylvania’s 18 congressional seats. In the crucial Philadelphia suburbs, Democrats were only able to offer token opposition to Congressmen Mike Fitzpatrick and Patrick Meehan this year. In those critical counties near Philly, Governor Romney is a perfect fit for Independent and Republican women. Polls suggest there is no gender gap.

This election, voter intensity favors Republicans. Senator Bob Casey (of the Potted Plant Party) has his hands full with a challenge from businessman Tom Smith. Recent polls show that race is a toss-up.Given all these factors, it’s no wonder Romney and his allies have started an air war. In fact, Republicans have spent enough money on ads in Pennsylvania in the past week to fund a solid, month-long ad campaign in the state.

Furthermore, “semi-defrocked” Republican strategist Mike Murphy recently tweeted that if Romney is trailing by two in the PA polls – he wins Ohio.

In the end, it’ll all be about turnout, but I’m cautiously pessimistic about the Keystone State.  I think Obama will eek out a win here.  However, I will bet that  Tom Smith, the Republican Senate candidate, will defeat incumbent Democrat Bob Casey, Jr.  He made up a deficit of almost twenty points in the polls, and flooded the state with ads to hammer at Casey.  It has worked.  The race is a virtual tie. With Casey’s nonexistent campaign and low enthusiasm from Democratic voters, I think Smith will win.

Now, concerning the Buckeye State, Obama is trying to over-perform in the auto/industrial areas of Toledo and Akron.  However, in an election where Democratic enthusiasm isn’t nearly as high as Republicans, it’ll be an uphill struggle.  Whereas Mitt Romney is taking a page from George W. Bush in ’04 centering on the southeast portion of the state – coal country – and the swing suburbs around Cincinnati.  As of now, the race is tied – but The American Spectator’s Robert Stacy McCain has been on the Romney campaign crawl and posted this on Election Eve.

[ Ali] Akbar [Republican operative] stayed up all night Saturday poring over Ohio early-voting totals, comparing them to previous elections, studying recent Buckeye State polls, and crunching the numbers before waking me up before 8 a.m. Sunday to declare, “We’ve got Ohio.” His analysis of the early-vote numbers and his interpretation of the latest Columbus Dispatch poll as bad news for Obama quickly inspired an online buzz among Republicans who have been worried sick over Ohio. Even at the mid-October apex of Romney’s surge, the Republican never led the Real Clear Politics average of polls in this crucial battleground state. Although Obama’s lead has never been large — as of Sunday, he led the RCP Ohio average by 2.8 points — it has been remarkably persistent, prompting much theorizing about the factors behind it. The economy in Ohio hasn’t been quite as hard-hit as some other states; unemployment is only 7 percent. Ads from the Obama campaign have hit Romney hard for his opposition to the GM and Chrysler bailout, a reasonably popular measure in Ohio, where auto manufacturing jobs are a vital part of the state’s economy.

However, it’s a false narrative considering that Mr. Romney’s plan would have also saved the auto industry, which was reaffirmed in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal by auto expert Edward Niedermeyer.  However, the trend with overall early voting doesn’t favor Obama.  Gallup stated that 15% of the electorate has already voted and they’re splitting 52%-46% in Romney’s favor.


Given the Obama administration’s ‘War on Coal,’ I will hedge my bets that there will be a high turnout from these counties adjacent to the Appalachian Trail, but if Hamilton County swings Republican, we can all breath a sigh of relief.

In Wisconsin, I didn’t give this to Romney because it’s Paul Ryan’s home state, and therefore, a safe win.  As George Will aptly noted back in April:

 …in the 16 elections since World War II, 10 presidential candidates have failed to carry the home state of their vice presidential running mates. Gov. Earl Warren could not carry California for Tom Dewey in 1948; Sen. Estes Kefauver could not carry Tennessee for Adlai Stevenson in 1956; former senator Henry Cabot Lodge could not carry Massachusetts for Richard Nixon in 1960; Rep. Bill Miller could not carry New York for Barry Goldwater in 1964; Gov. Spiro Agnew could not carry Maryland for Nixon in 1968; Sargent Shriver could not carry Maryland for George McGovern in 1972; Rep. Geraldine Ferraro could not carry New York (or women, or even her congressional district) for Walter Mondale in 1984; Sen. Lloyd Bentsen could not carry Texas for Michael Dukakis in 1988; Jack Kemp could not carry New York for Bob Dole in 1996; Sen. John Edwards could not carry North Carolina for John Kerry in 2004.

No, it’s because no state has swung more to the right in the Midwest than Wisconsin.  They booted incumbent Democratic Senator Russ Feingold for Ron Johnson, elected Gov. Scott Walker, and took tow formerly Democratic congressional districts that covers most of the northern part of the state in 2010. Additionally, Republicans took control of both chambers of the state legislature as well.  Furthermore, Gov. Scott Walker became the only governor in American history to survive a recall attempt last June receiving more votes than he did in the 2010 gubernatorial race.  Wisconsin State Senate Republicans also faced a recall of their own on two separate occasions.  The first salvo being fired in August of 2011, where Republicans maintained the majority. The second occurred in 2012, where Democrats gained control, but turned out to be a useless exercise since the the general session will not begin until after November 2012, when the seats will be contested again.

While the race is tied, given the reaffirmation of Walker’s policies, the infrastructure Walker has built to successfully maintain his residency in the Governor’s Mansion, and the conservative swing of the state’s electorate – suffice to say that a Romney victory here is likely. Disrupting the pattern where Wisconsin has gone Democratic in nine of the last ten presidential races.

In Indiana, Romney is ahead – on average – by 9.5 points.  Safe state.

In North Carolina, Romney is up by 3.  Given that the State Democratic Party of NC was distracted by a sex scandal and was saddled with an unpopular Democratic Governor, Bev Purdue, Romney should win the state. And Republicans will take the Governor’s mansion for Pat McCrory – the Mayor of Charlotte.  When he’s elected, McCrory will be the third Republican in the past thirty-nine years.

In Florida, it looks as if “Romney has pretty much nailed [it] down,” according to Guy Benson.  Ed Morrissey at Hot Air added to this sentiment noting a poll from the Tampa Bay Times and Miami Herald showing Gov. Romney with a comfortable six point lead.

Florida continues to look good for Mitt Romney. The Republican holds a 6-point lead in the state essential to his hopes of defeating President Barack Obama, according to a new Tampa Bay Times/Bay News 9/Miami Herald poll.

The poll shows slight tightening, with Romney’s 51-45 lead down 1 percentage point from the Times’ statewide poll a month ago. …

Still, nearly every key indicator in theTimes’ pre-Election Day poll reveals Romney’s advantage in a state Obama won four years ago.

Florida voters trust Romney more to fix the economy and give him an edge, 50 percent to 48 percent, on who will look out more for the middle class — a stark turn from past months when Obama and his allies unleashed a barrage of TV ads portraying Romney as an out-of-touch corporate raider.

Romney even has a slight advantage on foreign policy, with 2 percent more voters saying they trust him over Obama, who has faced criticism over the fatal attack on a U.S. consulate in Libya.

The Herald has an interesting analysis, one that confounds the national media narrative.  Romney now gets more crossover votes than Obama, contra to the common assumption that independents are proto-Republicans and Romney has trouble with his base:

Romney’s strengths: independent voters and more crossover support from Democrats relative to the Republicans who back Obama, according to the survey conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research.

Real Clear Politics Average has Romney with a 1.5 point advantage over the president going into Election Day.

 

Virginia will be a squeaker, but given the coal counties to the far western parts of the state, especially around the town of Grundy, I think Mitt will have success.   Ed Morrissey, who along with Allahpundit and most of the full-time staff, have been doing an excellent job detailing the recent polls and debunking the liberal drivel.  He wrote that:

Mitt Romney still earns 50% support in Virginia just before Election Day.

The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Virginia Voters shows Romney with 50% of the vote to President Obama’s 48%. One percent (1%) likes another candidate, and another one percent (1%) is undecided.

This is unchanged from two weeks ago and the week before that when it was Romney 50%, Obama 47%.

This one’s tight enough to look at the internals, which are somewhat surprising given the closeness of the toplines.  Obama actually loses the overall gender gap by three points (-7 among men, +4 among women), but he’s also losing independents in Virginia by 21 points, 58/37.  In 2008, Obama had a +11 in the gender gap and won independents by one point, 49/48.  The D/R/I in this sample is D+2 at 38/36/25; in 2008 it was 39/33/27 but in 2009′s gubernatorial election it was 33/37/30.

Romney wins the economic argument by six points, 51/45 over Obama.  There’s a significant gender gap on this question as well, but it also favors Romney (+10 among men, +1 among women).  Romney has a 25-point lead among independents on this question, 58/33.  On the other hand, Obama does have a positive job-approval rating at 51/49, which is probably why the toplines look as close as they do.  I’d guess, though, that Virginia’s going to break significantly for Romney

Lastly, New Hampshire is a bet.  Obama is ahead of Romney by two points, but I will take a gamble, and say  that Romney will take the “Live Free or Die” state due to depressed turnout and a little luck.  It’s my wild card.  Either way, it doesn’t matter.  It’s for fun.

Right now, it’s all about turnout.  Republicans are more enthused to vote this cycle.The Huffington Post posted about Chuck Todd’s breakdown of  Republican voter enthusiasm.  Here’s what he said on Meet The Press on October 7, which was the Sunday after the first presidential debate.

CHUCK TODD: Well, it’s simply an enthusiasm gap. And we’re seeing it across the board. Look at here in this first one. 79% of Republicans call themselves extremely interested in this election. On a scale of one to ten, that means they said they’re a nine or a ten on interest in the election. 73% of Democrats.

Look at four years ago. It was a 13 point gap in favor of the Democrats. Let me go through some various voting groups. This is an important voting group. Seniors are an important voting group to Mitt Romney now. He leads them by about 10 points in our NBC Wall Street Journal poll. Look at this in engagement in the election. Four years ago was 81%, pretty higher. Even higher this time at 87%. And Romney’s doing better among seniors than McCain did.

Let me go to an important voting group for the president, young voters. Look at this engagement level: 52% now they call themselves, voters 18 to 34, call themselves extremely interested in this election. Four years ago it was 72%. That 20 gap. The president wins young voters by huge margins. He’s winning them by some 20-plus points. But if you don’t have this kind of enthusiasm, they’re not going to show up to the polls.

And then let me give you this last one here, because this is, I think, the most important one. And that’s Hispanics. The President’s winning Hispanics by 50 points. He hit the 70% mark. However, look at this in terms of interest in the election. 59% now, it was 77%. What does that mean? President got 65%, I believe, of Hispanics four years ago.

So even though he’s going to get more Hispanics, if less of them turn out, it’s a net zero. And yet, you look at Republican enthusiasm, up, senior enthusiasm, up. It’s a huge problem. And by the way, all of this, pre-debate.

Furthermore, liberals are citing polls based on 2008 turnout levels that oversample Democratic voters.  A D+13 poll isn’t an accurate gauge in this election.  We’ve had an unemployment rate above 8% for over forty consecutive months – with the rate being over 9% for twenty-six of those months.  We have $6 trillion in new debt, 23 million unemployed, and a litany of new regulations.  What has Obama shown for this investment in trickle down government?   

We have seen an anemic economic recovery, with our third quarter growth at an insipid 2%.  President Obama is the personification of the dependency agenda.  A pernicious crusade to establish a hyper-regulatory progressive state and break all institutions within our nation to the will of Washington.  More women have lost their jobs under the Obama administration, and with women more on the economic frontlines, they’ve seen that the president may not be the best choice for their checkbook.

Granted, tonight will be a LONG night. So, make sure those coffee mugs are filled, Red Bulls are plentiful, and champagne fully stocked – because Republicans should be optimistic that Gov. Romney will soon be called ‘President Romney’ fairly soon.

 

 

Obama suggests adding another dept to government and raising taxes in second term

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Clearly, our federal government isn’t big enough. In a Monday morning interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”, President Obama suggested that a new Secretary of Business be created. Of course the new  Secretary will need a whole new government department of bureaucrats to go with his or her position.

“We should have one Secretary of Business, instead of nine different departments that are dealing with things like giving loans to SBA or helping companies with exports” the President said in the interview. Oddly, the federal government already has a Commerce Department and Secretary to go with it. Perhaps instead of consolidating some of the tasks from department under a new one, the President should be considering re-focusing the existing departments at a time when the government must shrink to match revenues.

The Commerce department’s mission as stated on its own front page is “to help make American businesses more innovative at home and more competitive abroad.” The divisions of the Commerce Department don’t look as though they are all focused on those goals. The current offices within the department include:

The Interior Department already handles Native American affairs making an office in Commerce unnecessary. If there are specific business concerns of Native American businesses, the office of Business Liaison should be tasked with understanding those details.

The Department of Justice and Health and Human Services both have civil rights divisions. Perhaps Commerce doesn’t need one too. It is curious that the Center for Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships is in Commerce – why not Health and Human Services?

It would appear that the government doesn’t need an additional highly-paid bureaucrat with many other taxpayer funded staff running around doing what the Commerce Department should be doing. Instead, an organizational leader would recognize the confusing set of offices in Commerce and re-focusing that department on the needs of American business here and abroad.

The President created a jobs council in his first term – a group he met with zero times in almost four years. Will the Secretary get the same treatment or will Obama use an unlikely second term to push his agenda of higher taxes while continuing to ignore the business community? In an interview after a campaign rally in New Hampshire, the President cleared up any confusion when he told the “Morning Joe” hosts that if voters elect him to a second term he will have a clear mandate for raising taxes as part of a deficit-reduction deal.

From a different perspective, if another department were created to focus on .. commerce, why would the Commerce Department need to continue to exist?

Some propose that the myriad offices within and without Commerce are necessary to help businesses navigate the whole of regulations that affect their businesses. Perhaps the real answer is to simplify those regulations to reduce the need for businesses to need such guidance.

What Makes Free Birth Control Expensive

Michelle Stansbury

Michelle Stansbury

Initially, when my local pharmacy informed me that the nine dollar co-pay on my birth control was now waived, I was surprised. When they went on to ask for my grocery card to give me gas points on the birth control I didn’t pay for, I was appalled. Free birth control and gas points sound picture-perfect, if you ignore the long term ripple effect.

Memorably, Milton Friedman said it best, “There is no such thing as a free lunch.”  If insurance companies are mandated to provide free services at the pharmacy or doctor’s office, they have to bill the recipient later through higher premiums to compensate for the added expense. Sky-high premiums are already expected to take effect for many starting next year; the plan my family and I are on will see a dismal increase of 27 percent.

If you aren’t already seeing a frustrating shade of blue, there are also twenty new tax hikes on families and small businesses scheduled in 2013 and onward courtesy of Obamacare.

Simply put, through increased insurance premiums and taxes, I’ll be paying for my birth control and for those around me several times over when I could have paid a measly nine dollars a month. My budget will tighten because our government and the Sandra Flukes of the world refuse to heed a basic life principal: Nothing is free; no matter how many times the government mandates otherwise.

Michelle Stansbury is a political consultant, paid speaker, and Fox Radio Political Commentator. You can follow her on Twitter: @MBStansbury and Subscribe on Facebook here.

I’m Barack Obama, and I’m Going to Deceive You in this Message

Do you think this title is harsh? Maybe. But is it true?

Absolutely.

If you watch his most recent ad, President Obama is using the same old lie: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/12/obama-mitt-romney-tax-rate_n_1962187.html (the video is near the bottom).

Why is this deception? Well, I’ve written about that before… many times.

President Obama is trying to convince Americans that Mitt Romney paid a lower tax rate than they did. This is profoundly incorrect, and the most important evidence to back my point, (taken from my previous post linked above) is the following table found in this IRS document which contains pertinent tax rate data:

 Click Image for Expanded View

These data show the number of income tax returns filed in their respective income ranges (the number is in thousands). For example, in 2009, there were 18,696,000 tax returns filed where the filer earned between $20,000 and $30,000. In the image, you will notice some data is circled. The large red oval encompases incomes that are < $50,000 yearly. The green oval encompasses incomes that are > $50,000 yearly. I’ve expanded upon this in the chart below.

Click Image for Expanded View

You will notice some key pieces of data highlighted on this chart. The chart also distributes the two taxpayer buckets circled in red and green the IRS chart: those making < $50,000 per year, and those making > $50,000 per year.  The explanations are as follows:

– Yellow highlight: This is showing the breakdown of incomes for the overall taxpayer buckets. Those making < $50,000 comprise 92,889,000 of the 140,495,000 total tax filers, which is around 66% of the total. Many  people focus on the “50% mark” – the income at which 50% of Americans make more and 50% of Americans make less. This is around $40,000 per year.

– Green highlight: This highlight shows the final income tax rate paid by each group. As you can see, those making < $50,000 paid an average income tax rate of -2.59%, and those making above $50,000 paid an average income tax rate of 13.54%. Each income bucket shows the respective rate paid by those within the bucket. For example, those making between $30,000 and $50,000 paid an income tax rate of about 2.9% while those making $200,000 to $500,000 paid an income tax rate of about 19.5%.

– Red highlight: This highlight shows the final tax rate paid after payroll taxes (Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, etc.) are factored in. You will notice that since these taxes are paid on the first $106,000 income, they affect those in the < $50,000 bucket more. For those in the upper income ranges, there is little change from their pre-payroll tax rate and after these taxes are applied. Regardless, when these taxes are factored in, those making < $50,000 (again, about 66% of the all Americans), paid a total tax rate of about 5.4%. You will notice that those making > $50,000 paid a total tax rate of about 18.7%. The true “middle income group,” those making between $30,000 – $50,000 yearly (the average American income falls in this range), paid a total tax rate of about 10.55%

All the data presented in this analysis is FINAL. All tax rates are final. This means that every rate is presented after loopholes, deductions, and write-offs.

Why is this all significant? Well, for starters, as stated,  President Obama tries to claim that Mitt Romney pays a lower tax rate than “you.” I have stated time and time again that this is simply deceiving. Mitt Romney paid around 14% of his income in taxes; 66% of Americans paid 5.94%. How can he be paying a lower tax rate than most Americans when most Americans pay a grand total of about 5.94% in federal taxes? Fact: he doesn’t. Mitt Romney paid a higher greater tax rate than most Americans. Period.

Additionally, I know there are many taxpayers out there that claim, “I make $40,000 and I paid a higher rate than Mitt Romney,” but, when looking at the whole picture, my answer to those people falls into one of two categories:

1. No you didn’t. Yes, while you have paid your taxes throughout the year, you had these taxes removed from your paycheck. And yes, it seemed like they were removing quite a bit (from my paycheck, around 27% is removed each time). What most people seem to forget is that lower income earners tend to receive large tax refunds (notice the large negative income tax rates for low-income earners above). These people often forget to factor refunds in, and these refunds reduce the FINAL RATE PAID significantly. Take a look at my tax return info and see how much I received in a refund. That refund reduced my tax rate quite a bit: http://loudmouthelephant.blogspot.com/2012/01/part-2-what-do-mitt-romneys-tax-returns.html

2.You’re a statistic anomaly. It’s that simple. IRS data, as seen above, shows that those making < $50,000 annually, the majority of Americans, do NOT pay a greater rate than 14%. If you are, for whatever reason you do, you’re a rare breed.

In summary, can someone please explain to me how Barack Obama’s claim of Mitt Romney paying greater tax rates than most Americans is true? The case does exist, but on such an insignificant level. The facts and data show that Obama’s claim is just plain false. This has been shown time and time again, but yet Team Obama keeps repeating the same lie. How can anyone be okay with this? Please share your thoughts below.

Barack Obama Continues to Lie About Taxes – Part 2

Part 1 can be seen here: http://www.conservativedailynews.com/2012/09/barack-obama-continues-to-lie-about-taxes-part-1

Let me start by saying that my grandmother used to tell me that if any part of anything I say is a lie, if there is anything that can be pulled out that isn’t true… then I’m lying. Keep that in mind. Deceit is deceit.

Well, what about hypocrisy?

The quick answer: There is no difference.

What am I getting at? Well, as you saw in Part 1, Obama has been lying to the American people about the tax rates the average American pays. Part 2 focuses on how he acts hypocritically by calling out Mitt Romney and the wealthy for using “loopholes,” “write-offs,” and “deductions” to pay less in taxes while he himself uses these very tax law tools. Not only does Obama uses these instruments of tax avoidance himself, but he uses them at a higher rate than Mitt Romney. Yes, you read that correctly: Barack Obama is better than Mitt Romney at using “loopholes,” “write-offs,” and “deductions” to pay less in taxes. But don’t take my word; let’s look at Mitt Romney’s and Barack Obama’s tax returns. Since the dust hasn’t officially settled on Mitt Romney’s 2011 returns (he allegedly paid more in taxes than he had to), we will use his and Obama’s 2010 documents for this analysis.

Here is President Obama’s 2010 tax return: http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/rss_viewer/POTUS_taxes.pdf (If this sounds a little facetious from here on out, please forgive me; you have to understand the sheer joy a conservative feels when showing just how hypocritical the left truly is).

Start by focusing your attention on page 1, line 22 – Total Income: $1,795,694 (and oh yeah, Barack Obama is in the 1% the left love so much to hate).

Next, look at adjusted gross income (AGI), line 37 at the bottom of the page: $1,726,096. What’s that?! He reduced his income by 1.69x the average American yearly income. Don’t worry; there’s more.

Go to the second page, near the top. Line 40 – Itemized deductions: $373,289. Holy cow! You mean Obama has used the current tax code, just as Mitt Romney has, to reduce his taxable income?

Line 43 shows the “smoking gun” – Taxable income: $1,340,247. Ta-da! President Obama has reduced his taxable income from the original $1,795,694 to $1,340,247, or by 25.4%!!!

Now let’s take a look at Mitt Romney’s 2010 tax return, and I can make this quick: http://thorndike.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Romney1040-2010.pdf

Page 1, line 22 – Total Income: $21,661,334

Page 2 (it’s further in the document) Line 43, Taxable income: $17,120,067

To make sure we are comparing apples to apples, this means Mitt Romney reduced his taxable income by $4,541,267 or only 21%!!!

So when it comes to who is the biggest player of the US tax game… who reduces their income by more… who skirts the system by using these “loopholes,” “write-offs,” and “deductions” the most, not only is President Obama playing the same game… he plays it MORE. He plays it better. He does all this while deriding Mitt Romney and the wealthy… all while doing it with a straight face. If this isn’t a double standard, I don’t know what one is.

Finally a Democrat on the Right Side of Taxes

The Widow's mite of Biblical fame.

The Widow’s mite of Biblical fame.

Tim Kaine — known here as Gov. Flowmax after closing Virginia’s interstate rest stops — occasionally comes down on the right side of an issue. During the Fairfax Chamber of Commerce debate between Senate candidates Kaine and former Sen. George Allen, Kaine observed that he would be “open” to the idea of everyone paying some level of federal income tax.

Subsequent media and online coverage was dominated by the charge that Kaine wants to tax everyone. Republican websites instantly pounced on the tax statement in an effort to put Kaine on the defensive. This is typical of today’s politics where candidates and consultants go for short–term political advantage at the cost of long term damage to the country.

Readers of last week’s column know I think it’s a good idea for every adult to pay federal tax. Otherwise some enjoy Taxation Without Participation where those who don’t pay federal taxes are happy to vote for politicians who will increase the taxes of those who do.

There is no government free lunch, although it may seem like it as long as the Chinese allow Uncle Sam to run a tab. If everyone pays, then everyone is aware of the cost of government when taxes increase. Normally Democrats oppose this.

The whole idea of some individuals being exempt from responsibility is another of the modern “progressive” ideas that have done so much to damage the nation. “Forward” into oblivion one might say.

Contrast “progressive” tax policy with Biblical tithe policy. God — who one would think knows something about the human heart and fairness — did not exempt anyone from paying their obligation. Luke 21:1 – 4 relates the incident of the widow’s mite: And He looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the treasury, and He saw also a certain poor widow putting in two mites. So He said, “Truly I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all; for all these out of their abundance have put in offerings for God but she out of her poverty put in all the livelihood that she had.”

The widow’s poverty did not exempt her, in fact it served to glorify her. Yet modern man, who evidently has a more finely attuned sense of justice than God, doesn’t think everyone should contribute to the nation’s upkeep. What’s more, the widow paid the same percentage tithe as those in “their abundance.” Proving God doesn’t believe in “progressive” tax rates either, but that’s a topic for another column.

Kaine was also asked if he supports eliminating charitable and mortgage interest deductions. Kaine answered that he supports broadening the base and rather than enduring a political battle over each deduction, he supports setting an aggregate total.

What this innocuous phrase means is Kaine wants the federal government to decide what’s a reasonable amount for you to give to charity. I’m sure if Kaine has his way the federally–approved donation deduction will be somewhere between the widow’s mite that Joe Biden delivers by motorcade each December 25th and the 30 percent Mitt Romney has donated to charity in 2011.

If instituted, the fed’s final decision on what’s allowed will be closer to the 3 to 5 percent charitable average for the US. For Christians who give a 10 percent tithe, this means they will be paying taxes on at least half of the money they donate. Proving Leviathan tolerates the worship of God as long as you save some Mammon for it.

This is a curious policy for a Catholic like Kaine to support, but it’s not the only issue where the former governor has a secular take on his faith. When the subject came up Kaine didn’t come right out and say he supported “abortion.” After all, this wasn’t the Democrat National Convention where abortion is part of the party platform.

Kaine’s genuflection came when he declared support for a woman’s right to exercise “constitutional choices.” But certainly not the “constitutional choice” that allows a woman to carry a concealed weapon. Kaine’s bloodless euphemism is just his feeble attempt to conceal the ugly truth of abortion.

Kaine will tell you that as a Catholic he is personally opposed to abortion, but is not willing to impose his beliefs on others. This is a classic dodge that weaselly Southern Democrats have been using for over 200 years.

Before the Civil War Democrats claimed to be personally opposed to slavery, but unwilling to impose their beliefs on the planter aristocracy.

The outcome in the one case was involuntary servitude, in the other involuntary death. I fail to see any improvement in Democrat philosophy over the years.

It’s a real shame that Tim Kaine is not willing to extend his “open” to everyone paying taxes to being “open” to everyone being born.

Barack Obama Continues to Lie About Taxes – Part 1

I’ve written about this often: It seems that President Obama is taking the “throw it at the wall and see what sticks” approach to his campaign ads. This means that he is making claims, regardless of how false they are, and hoping they get enough viewership without the average American even checking on the validity of these claims themselves. Team Obama hopes that if repeated often enough, the electorate will simply believe these claims, without question, ultimately voting for a president based on lies and misinformation. For additional examples, see this post: http://loudmouthelephant.blogspot.com/2012/06/fill-in-blank-obama-campaign-is-based.html. In fact, I highlighted the “science” behind the President’s campaign strategy here: http://loudmouthelephant.blogspot.com/2012/06/obama-campaign-deceit-machine-rolls-on.html

In Obama’s newest campaign ad, he goes right after Mitt Romney and his tax rate. First,… why??? What in the world does this have to do with anything? Does Obama really think the American people are dumb enough to focus on Romney’s tax rate while ambassadors are getting mauled, 23,000,000 people are unemployed, and the national debt climbs to astronomical levels? I won’t answer that. Moving on and focusing on the facts that debunk Obama’s ad, let’s get some things straight:

– Mitt Romney has done NOTHING illegal. Nothing.

– Mitt Romney has paid every bit of taxes required of him.

– Mitt Romney has paid more in taxes in one year than an average American would pay in 448 years of work.

– Most importantly: Mitt Romney DID pay a higher tax rate than most Americans – I will address this specifically.

Let me see if I understand this: President Obama puts out the ad above and, in short, the ad uses creepy music and words like “probably” to make a claim about a guy who has done nothing wrong, all while lying about the tax rates of all Americans?

Okay, I will answer my own question: Yes, Obama truly does think Americans are that stupid. Allow me to elaborate.

First, with regards to the “Mitt Romney probably paid a lower tax rate than you” claim, did you notice the most important word? Of course, it’s “probably.” Why does Team Obama use that specific word? One simple phrase answers this question: “Plausible deniability.” Why didn’t Obama just say, “Mitt Romney paid a lower tax rate than you?” Answer: Because Obama knows this is absolute baloney. His campaign can twist their claim any way they want… IF and when the American people question it. Team Obama hopes and knows they won’t. Using the word “probably” is like an insurance policy. Just in case a fire storm does hit, the Obama campaign cannot get nailed for being entirely dishonest.

To understand this overall picture, I submit to you: When you’re putting out a claim to the country as a whole (the “probably paid more than ‘YOU’ part”), you’re implying that > 50% of people fall in to the category. You can’t claim “you” if it’s one in 100 people. So yes, when Obama claims, “Mitt Romney probably paid a lower tax rate than you,” he is implying Mitt Romney paid a lower tax rate than most people. Hmmm. I want take a brief step back to some internet propaganda I analyzed earlier this year. Back in March, I investigated the ridiculous claim of Mitt Romney’s versus a teacher’s tax rates.

What does the data show? It clearly says that yes, IRS data confirmed that “millionaires and billionaires” do not pay lower tax rates than the middle class. For those claiming “well, this doesn’t include payroll taxes…” You’re right. It doesn’t. But payroll taxes are a total of 7.65% of the first approximately $110,000 of earned income (BEFORE the payroll tax holiday). This means that for the average income, which is about $40,000, an American tax payer paid an income tax rate of 6.00% and a payroll tax rate of 7.65%. The conclusion: an average taxpayer pays about 13.65% in total federal taxes. Keep in mind this is the average. It’s a safe judgement to assume approximately 50% of Americans make more than and 50% of Americans make less than this average. Well, economics and math aside, if the majority of the country pays a tax rate of 13.65%, how can Mitt Romney pay a lower tax rate than most Americans when he pays around 14%? Keep in mind, these figures account for those Americans that DO pay taxes. When you factor those in that do not, all those Americans paying nothing significantly bring down the American average.

Now that the first Obama tax lie is debunked in theory, let’s talk about it in practice. Of course, as a good conservative economist, I wanted to look at some real IRS data to back my claim.

My analysis follows. First, be sure to look at the specific IRS tax data report I used for this analysis: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-soi/12inwinbulratesshare.pdf

Let’s take a look. First, and this is a quick side note… we constantly hear the claim, 47% of Americans pay no taxes. Well, the opening line of the IRS report says the following:

“Taxpayers filed 140.5 million individual income tax returns for Tax Year 2009. Of those, 81.9 million (or 58.3 percent) were classified as taxable returns. This represents the lowest percentage of taxable returns in more than 24 years. A taxable return is a return that has total income tax greater than $0.”

What?! That means, if we assume the US has about 310,000,000 people, that yes, about 54-55% didn’t even file tax returns (this is given as a range because the number could be different due to joint tax returns), but there is an even more important stat here: Only 81,900,000 of those paid taxes. So out of 310,000,000 people, only 26.4% had income tax to pay? How can this country be sustained when nearly 3 out of ever 4 people doesn’t even pay income tax? Perhaps the argument is, “73% of Americans pay no income tax, if you add payroll taxes (Social Security and Medicare taxes) in, 47% still pay nothing? Hmmm.

Anyway, the glaring charts that stand out in the IRS data are Figures B and B1. Take a look:

(Click on image to zoom in)

What do you notice? Ahhh yes… truth and fact. This shows the average tax rates of the 81.9 million who DID pay taxes. Yes, this means that the people who did not pay taxes have had their figures removed, no longer bringing down the average. So out of all remaining taxpayers, for example, the average American making $30,000 – $50,000 per year paid a final tax rate (again, notice total income tax), of 6.4%. This is a different income range “bucket” from the discussion above, but it does paint the same picture.

 Now lets look at ALL TAX FILERS- including those who actually did file a tax return and didn’t pay any tax (about 41.7% of all tax filers). Check it out:

(Click on image to zoom in)

So… what did we find? Factoring in ALL TAX FILERS, the average American making $30,000 – $50,000 per year (this chart shows ALL income earners), paid a final tax rate of 2.9%. This means that even if you added in the 7.65% payroll tax rate, the average final tax rate of someone earning between $30,000 – $50,000 is 10.55%.  Did you notice anything else? Yes, many people get more in a tax refund than they paid in total income tax. These people essentially receive tax payments from the government.

Why did I highlight the $30,000 – $50,000 income range? Well, though this data is slightly outdated, the average American earns about $40,000 each year (it’s safe to assume this hasn’t changed drastically since): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Personal_income_in_the_United_States. To me, that’s the standard. If you claim, “Mitt Romney probably paid a lower tax rate than you,” I respond with an question of, “what did the average income earner pay?”

In simple conclusion, as the bright-as-the-sun data have shown, since the average American did not pay anything close to the rate that Mitt Romney did, how can this claim by team Obama be anything but a lie? Every American needs to see this before they simply believe another Team Obama lie.

Part – 2, a summation of how President Obama vilifies Mitt Romney (and the wealthy in general) for using “loopholes,” “deductions,” and “write-offs” to reduce his taxable income while doing it more and to a greater extent, can be seen here: http://www.conservativedailynews.com/2012/10/barack-obama-continues-to-lie-about-taxes-part-2/

Taxation Without Participation

It's easy to vote for higher taxes when you're not paying.

It’s easy to vote for higher taxes when you’re not paying.

Michael Kinsley described a “gaffe” as anytime a politician is caught telling the truth. This is particularly accurate for Republicans and conservatives as is demonstrated by the reaction to Mitt Romney’s comment regarding Obama’s base.

The setting was unfortunate — a $50,000–a–plate fundraiser — but the message was accurate. As he discussed campaign strategy — not governing philosophy — Romney explained: “There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what…who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe that government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it… And the government should give it to them…

Our message of low taxes doesn’t connect…so my job is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them that they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives. What I have to do is convince the five to 10 percent in the center that are independents, that are thoughtful…”

Romney neglected to mention another solid portion of the Obama base: the welfare–industrial complex composed of government workers and associated special interest groups. The simple fact is the more people receiving government handouts, the more government employees you need to distribute the geetus.

The size of the two populations increases in lockstep as does the size of the Obama base. There is no exit strategy for the War on Poverty.

And this is nothing new, as Ann Coulter pointed out, “Democrats’ problem with welfare reform always was that if it worked, we would need fewer of these well-pensioned public employees, a fact repeatedly acknowledged by liberals themselves.”

Democrat “compassion” for the poor and underprivileged always comes with a healthy dose of self–interest. Just like any attack on Republicans while defending welfare programs is done with elections in mind. They know a reduction in dependency threatens to result in a reduction in Democrats.

Why do you think the Obama administration imitates Tupperware and throws food stamp parties to urge people to apply for handouts? Why did the number of able–bodied participants in the food stamp program double after Obama suspended the work requirement? Why do a record 8.8 million Americans collect disability checks? Why do federal unemployment checks continue for almost two years? And why is the Obama administration spending a record 15.4 percent of the Gross Domestic Product on direct cash payments to individuals?

The answer is simple: Obama’s building his base. That’s why Democrats at their national convention had no problem with an Orwellian video that proclaimed, “Government is the only thing that we all belong to.”

Realizing this 47 percent voting block constitutes a problem isn’t a targeting decision made inside the Romney campaign. It’s an issue with the potential to rend the social fabric of the nation. It is a serious enough problem to offer Democrats a trade.

Conservatives agree to abandon photo ID requirements for voting if in return Democrats agree any citizen who is dependent on the federal government for his livelihood is not eligible to vote. This important reform would not mean a permanent loss of voting privileges and the creation of lifelong second–class citizens. On the contrary, as soon as the dependent citizen re–establishes financial independence the individual regains his vote. Regaining his vote acts as an incentive for personal responsibility.

When 47 percent of the populace is dependent on government benefits the nation is fast approaching a tipping point. Once the number passes 50 percent, American society will no longer have a crucial element of shared sacrifice. Instead the dependency block gets to vote for their share of increased benefits and taxpayers make the sacrifice. Even Democrats should be able to recognize that situation is unfair and inequitable.

For example, are McDonald’s customers allowed to set the price of a Big Mac? Do employees of Government Motors vote to set their own salaries? Do football teams get to vote on how many points the opposing defense will surrender?

There already exists a precedent for temporarily relinquishing the vote. Judges, Congressmen and even members of the city council are not supposed to vote or rule on matters in which they have a financial interest.

Naturally government employees would retain voting privileges. As would Social Security recipients, simply because seniors have been told since the program’s inception the money is not welfare. It’s not true now and it was a lie in 1935, but I’m not prepared to penalize seniors because the government misled them.

This reform would leave us with an electorate that bears the responsibility of paying for the government it advocates. Without this reform the Obamatrons continue to benefit unfairly from Taxation Without Participation.

In November one might cynically term Obama’s 47 percent “pocketbook voters,” only the pocketbook they’ll be voting is yours.

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