Tuesday, 9/18/12, Public Square

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Filed under The Public Square

40 responses to “Tuesday, 9/18/12, Public Square

  1. 29 Companies That Paid Millions For Lobbying (And Didn’t Pay Taxes)

    (from the link): Thirty large U.S. corporations paid more money to Congressional lobbyists than they paid in taxes from 2008-2010, according to a new report from Public Campaign, a purportedly non-partisan corporate watchdog organization that seeks to reduce the influence of big companies in politics. The report names 30 profitable companies (only one of which paid federal corporate taxes during the period analyzed), with lobbying expenditures ranging from $710,000 to $84.4 million.

    The worst offender, according to the report, is General Electric.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/chrisbarth/2011/12/14/29-companies-that-paid-millions-for-lobbying-and-didnt-pay-taxes/

  2. Mitt has proven time and again that when he opens his mouth he doesn’t care who he offends. His ‘entitlement’ attitude shows clearly.

  3. (from the link): Indeed, the recession and its aftermath have left tens of millions of workers out of a job or underemployed, removing more households from payment of federal income taxes. Moreover, the Bush tax cuts – the signature Republican economic policy of the 2000s, which doubled the child tax credit, increased a number of other deductions and exemptions, and lowered marginal tax rates – erased millions of families’ federal income tax liabilities.

    It is also worth noting that though tens of millions of families do not pay federal income taxes, there are virtually no families that do not pay any taxes – between payroll taxes, sales taxes, state and local taxes, and on and on.

    Behind the ‘People Who Pay No Income Tax’
    http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/17/the-reasons-behind-the-people-who-pay-no-income-tax/?hp

  4. Thurston Howell Romney
    By DAVID BROOKS

    (from the link): This comment suggests a few things. First, it suggests that he really doesn’t know much about the country he inhabits. Who are these freeloaders? Is it the Iraq war veteran who goes to the V.A.? Is it the student getting a loan to go to college? Is it the retiree on Social Security or Medicare?

    It suggests that Romney doesn’t know much about the culture of America. Yes, the entitlement state has expanded, but America remains one of the hardest-working nations on earth. Americans work longer hours than just about anyone else. Americans believe in work more than almost any other people. Ninety-two percent say that hard work is the key to success, according to a 2009 Pew Research Survey.

    It says that Romney doesn’t know much about the political culture. Americans haven’t become childlike worshipers of big government. On the contrary, trust in government has declined. The number of people who think government spending promotes social mobility has fallen.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/18/opinion/brooks-thurston-howell-romney.html?_r=0

  5. rd liebst

    Consideration, if one makes the assumption that you are in fact smarter then the others then the course is clear. You can tell greater lies and assume that you can get away with lying since the others are not smart enough to see they are being lied to. Such is the idea of those advising Mitt Romney, the fact that he is being caught up in his own words and there is proof of his lies. Does not dismay or sway them.

    Since they think themselves that much smarter then the masses then it means nothing more then to tell a greater lie to cover the first. After all they are so much more intelligent and the masses are that much dumber and pliable. If you add to that the masses are becoming more disparate and desperation leans to needing an answer that does not always have to make sense or is actually workable.

    The king as long as the serfs are starving and cold can convince them to be more loyal to them with the promise if they are. Then the king will feed them and homes them one day if not now. Hope is a cheap thing, if nothing more real then a dream. That works for the President as well as Romney, while the President is making a real thought. Mitt Romney is making a pipe dream that everyone will be another koke brother or Millionaire.

    The President makes the promise that we all can make it through and if we work together then fewer will suffer.

  6. Example of tweets last night after the video of Romney speaking at a fundraiser, unaware he was being recorded, was brought to our attention:

    • One category is missing in this picture – the corporate mega churches.

      • rd liebst

        So true Indy, I finally got to meet Fox and my relatives cringed thinking I would go off on him. I did state that he was misusing the Bible and I prayed for him…. This was in the Spangles he owns and so he refrained for responding all mad and over the top. LOL I have not been invited to come to his church by either him or my relatives?

  7. You know – Republicans are the ones that think it is patriotic to hide your money overseas to avoid income taxes…..but yet these same people demonize 47% of Americans for not paying any income taxes.

    Hypocrisy or are they just plain liars?

  8. Of that 47% – how many are retired Tea Baggers who do not pay any income taxes but yet are the first ones to get their government entitled health care and their drugs?

  9. There is one thing about the 47% that I have brought up before on this blog – and those are the people who will not get married – on purpose – so they can qualify to get the tax credits – ie earned income credit.

    The last time I was doing tax return preparation – the maximum income one cearn was about $30,000/year – and the more kids you had, the bigger the tax credit.

    I remember the HR Block teacher stating that every year the offices would take phone calls from people wanting to know what the maximum earning amount was for that year – because they did not want to go over.

    But – one sure way to not go over this is to not get married. That way – the one that has the lesser income (usually the woman) would claim earned income credit and the more kids you had – the more credit you would get – and that is the way these people get those huge tax refund checks.

    But my problem with this – my two kids chose to get married and then have their kids. Since they both work – they do not qualify for anything but the child tax credit – which helps, but they are still paying income taxes.

    I see this couples not marrying on purpose as ‘gaming the system’ – but how is this any different than the Republicans applauding their folks finding ways to avoid paying income taxes?

    It’s the same thing…….

    • Here is a link to Romney stating that paying more taxes than legally required would disqualify him as president.

      So – these 47% are simplying following the same tax code that Romney hires his accountants to use.

      So…tell me again Mitt……why are the 47% moochers and lazy but you are somehow this Patriotic Dude that thinks it is stupid to help your country?

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/29/mitt-romney-taxes_n_1716657.html

    • There’s one fact about the ‘Earned Income Credit’ most people ignore: ‘earned’ means you are working and earning a wage, and filing taxes. Without those steps you can’t avail yourself of that tax credit. Rich people, however, don’t need to earn a wage to realize tax credits for money they made on their investments. Yes, I’ve heard the arguments that taxes were already paid on that money and most people see through that tripe to the fact that taxes were paid only on the original investment, not the earnings. Yet the tax rates on those ‘earnings’ are much lower than the tax rates paid on wage-type ‘earnings.’

      Both called ‘earnings’:

      Money you earn by working.

      Money you earn by having money invested.

      • I would certainly rather have people working than not working – but it does bother me to know that my two kids made the choice to get married but yet they are penalized – when it is compared side by side – both scenarios are working people with kids. It’s the fact one couple is married that makes it different.

        But yet Republicans applaud when their rich folks can game the system – Hell, they even brag about it.

        As for the lower rate on the invested money – I’ve heard the argument that the tax rate was lowered intentionally to encourage people to invest money.

        Hmmm…..is that anything like those special Bush tax cuts that were sold on the promise they would create jobs???

        Where are the JOBS – Republicans???

      • ” I’ve heard the argument that the tax rate was lowered intentionally to encourage people to invest money.”

        First, you would need money left over after paying your own way.

  10. Mitt indicates it’s only OK for Mitten$ to deduct the cost of his dancing horse to lower his taxes but not OK for the working stiffs to use the child care tax credits to lower theirs. The people who actually WORK for their money have the same rights to use all the legal loopholes to lower their taxes (even if it means NO FEDERAL TAX LIABILITY) as Mitten$ does!

  11. Interesting reading about medical device corporations and the potential for disaster…

    http://features.blogs.fortune.cnn.com/2012/09/18/synthes-norian-criminal/?iid=HP_LN

  12. Here’s another bone I have to pick with Republicans –

    if these folks want women to be stay-at-home mothers – then make that possible for those couples to choose that option.

    AS things are today – the average job does not afford the luxury of the wife staying at home.

    I know several women who are workign jsut for the health care benefits. By the time they pay for day care – their paychecks are gone.

    So…..health care is a big factor in the lives of the working people. So…why do Republicans feel the need to keep health care away from as many people as they can?

    • This problem is further compounded by these same Republicans wanting to ban birth control ..

      Duh…..more babies born – the more money is needed for the family to survive…

      It’s a vicicous cycle…….. But the last thing we need to add to this problem are more babies – unwanted pregnancies that Republicans feel it is their government’s job to monitor so closely.

      Talk about Big Government….

  13. Listen to Mitten$ beat the drums of war when he doesn’t know he is being recorded. When he thinks he’s only speaking to the have and have mores who will increase their wealth by waging wars.

    ———————————————

    SECRET VIDEO: On Israel, Romney Trashes Two-State Solution

    (from the link): At the private fundraiser held May 17 where Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney candidly spoke about political strategy—noting that he saw half of the American electorate as freeloaders and “victims” who do not believe in personal responsibility—he discussed various foreign policy positions, sharing views that he does not express in public, including his belief that peace in the Middle East is not possible and a Palestinian state is not feasible.

    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/09/romney-secret-video-israeli-palestinian-middle-east-peace

    • David Corn from Mother Jones is out MSNBC quite a bit….. this is the guy that broke the story about the first video.

      He says there are more coming….

      • I read someplace that it was President Carter’s grandson who found the recordings that had been ‘out there’ since May.

        I’m glad they are now being brought to the attention of Americans. It’s always been obvious to me that Romney has no idea of who we average Americans are, how we live, what our concerns are… He has so little regard for the people who aren’t obscenely wealthy and he seems not to recognize or understand the contributions we working people make. We don’t matter to him and he makes that quite obvious!

        All he has to offer are tax cuts for the wealthy so it’s good that he recognizes he has nothing for all the rest of Americans! If you’re not earning enough to get one of his new tax cuts why in the world would you vote for him? If elected he would make everything worse than it is now for everyone who isn’t already wealthy.

      • I just watched James Carter IV on MSNBC with Chris Matthews. He is Jimmy Carter’s grandson.

        When I first heard this – I thought he was the one that filmed this fundraiser – but, then again, I wondered why a Republican bunch of rich fat cats would want Jimmy Carter’s grandson there.

        But – James Carter IV is an Opposition Researcher and he was the found that found this video on You-Tube. And it was James that tracked down the person that actually filmed it and talked them into letting him get it into the media – which is where David Corn of Mother Jones comes into the picture.

        Whew…

        But – you know what John Sununu yelled at Andrea Mitchell? The media needs to focus on how Jimmy Carter’s grandson got the video instead of asking Romney about his comments.

        Sununu – wasn’t he the guy that got fired from the White House because he was so confrontational with everybody?

        I swear – Andrea Mitchell simply asked qeustions and I thought Sununu was going to have a heart attack on live television. This man ended up just yelling back at everything Andrea said. But – Andrea Mitchell did not back down.

        Then when finished – Sununu sat there and had that same smirk that Romney has on his face when he thinks he has been ever so clever. And then Sununu made a face and just giggled…..

        Is that TEa Party tea something stronger? Seriously, it has got to be good ol’ fashioned moonshine to make these Republicans act like big assholes.

      • I’m hearing the Romney campaign believes that appealing to the republican base over independents is the better strategy (they presumably have lots of internal data to support this conclusion), and thus they think Romney’s comments will be an asset.

        I think that is a bunch of spin. It doesn’t seem likely Romney would have called that press conference last night if he thought bringing attention to the comments he made at the May fund raiser would have a positive impact on his candidacy.

        So, spin away. The campaign is in damage control mode and desperate to find anything positive out of a situation where Romney managed to potentially offend the elderly, veterans, students, Latinos and other demographic groups, most of whom do, in fact, pay some taxes and have earned their entitlements. They must also spin how someone who claims that as president he would represent all Americans, said: “My job is not to worry about those people.”

        Maybe those who were going to vote for Romney no matter what will touch the screen harder, or pull the lever with greater emphasis. And that will make their vote somehow better… 🙂

  14. When Republicans say, “You don’t like Romney because he’s rich,” we say “No, we don’t like him because he doesn’t acknowledge the advantages wealth affords him.” This piece in the New Yorker sums it up nicely:

    (from the link): Romney was the son of a governor and an auto executive who gave him a wealth of connections, a private education, college tuition, a stock portfolio that he lived on while in graduate school, help buying a first house. That he recognizes the value of none of these things is both dismaying and discouraging for anyone who thinks that he will be able to do much to actually encourage opportunity in America. He is clear enough about one difference money can make in life, when he tells those present, “Frankly, what I need you to do is to raise millions of dollars,” and talks about how many foreign customers his campaign consultants have had. But Romney did, in the video, talk about a disadvantage that he feels he has labored under: had his father “been born of Mexican parents, I’d have a better shot of winning this.”

    Read more http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/closeread/2012/09/mitts-forty-seven-per-cent-problem.html#ixzz26q8biqz8

  15. The 47%: Who They Are, Where They Live, How They Vote, and Why They Matter

    (from the link): Here’s another, slightly wonkier, way to think about the 47%. Divide the group into two halves. The first half is made tax-free by credits and exemptions, the vast majority of which go to senior citizens and children of the working poor. The half that you’re left with is so poor, they wouldn’t owe federal income taxes even if there were zero tax expenditures.

    There are some not-so-poor outliers, like the 7,000 millionaires who paid no federal income taxes in 2011. But for the most part, when you hear “The 47%” you should think “old retired folks and poor working families.”

    The 47% aren’t lucky ducks cheating the system. They’re mostly poor working families getting pilloried by the political party that wrote the rules they’re following. If the 47% are the monster here, then Republicans helped play the role of Dr. Frankenstein. “Non-payers” have grown in the last 30 years because of marginal tax rate cuts and credits like the EITC passed under Republican presidents and continued by both parties in Congress.

    It would be one thing to ask poor working families to pay higher taxes if Republicans were trying to raise money to improve government services. Quite the opposite, Romney’s tax plan would, if passed, either reduce revenue or come out neutral by raising taxes on upper-middle class families. Meanwhile, his budget would gruesomely gut Medicaid and income-support programs below their projected 2020 levels.

    More, including graphs, maps, charts:
    http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2012/09/the-47-who-they-are-where-they-live-how-they-vote-and-why-they-matter/262506/

  16. prairie pond

    Did you guys see this “Text from Hillary?”

    OMG. I love these, and today’s is priceless.

    http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021365789

    • 🙂

      He asked.

      Romney made it clear he thinks it’s pointless to work with people who disagree with him. I guess if he doesn’t like Hillary’s advice he can continue with his —

      whine, whine, whine: He can’t get a break with these 47 percenters — the deck is stacked, liberals have rigged the system by throwing money at the moochers, and the moochers themselves are incapable of gratitude despite the fact that what he and his fellow right-wingers want to do is what’s good for them. A good, responsible republican is screwed from the word go because the damn liberal SOBs have the rabble wrapped around their elitist fingers. It’s just not fair!

      What could be a more Nixonian message of self-pity?

      http://nomoremister.blogspot.com/2012/09/richard-milhous-romney-jamelle-bouie.html

  17. WATCH: Full Secret Video of Private Romney Fundraiser
    Mitt Romney wanted the full tape. Here it is.

    (from the link): The campaign hastily convened a late-night press conference to address his controversial statements, and Romney stood by his “off the cuff” comments, while conceding that they were “not elegantly stated.” He claimed his comments where merely a “snippet” and not the “full response.” That was not true; his comments were shown in full. He added, “I hope the person who has the video would put out the full material.”

    Full video (two parts) and audio at the link. A full transcript will be published soon.

    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/09/watch-full-secret-video-private-romney-fundraiser

  18. 6176, I would like to hear anything you have to say on this. You always give such excellent insight into matters I struggle to understand.

    Pa. Supreme Court Bounces Voter ID Case Back to Trial Judge

    http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2012/09/18/pennsylvania-supreme-court-bounces-voter-id-case-back-to-trial-judge/

    • I blush, but here goes. Essentially, the PA Supremes bumped the case back to the trial judge for additional facts. If I was a tea leaf reader, the Supremes wanted to make a definitive ruling, but the ROA (Record on Appeal) was either devoid of facts or lacked sufficient facts found by the trial judge to support any ruling. As the PA Supremes seem to recognize the importance of the case, and know its decision will be going on appeal (if SCOTUS decides to accept), the court wants as solid a factual basis as possible to support its decision, reducing the chance for SCOTUS to do violence thereto.

  19. (from the link): By now, we all know about the not-so-secret video of Mitt Romney calling 47% of the country a bunch of losers, or how some Republicans are trying to spin this embarrassment as somehow being part of their message. So, what should we make of it?

    Remember the Washington Post story from a few months ago that we dismissed as not terribly significant about Romney’s bullying days in high school?

    We thought his casual “If I offended … ” apology was just a tone-deaf gaffe. The country’s attitude toward bullying is different now than it was when Romney was in school, and we just figured he didn’t get it. But who cares, right? That was so many years ago — the stuff of adolescence.

    How Romney really feels about Republicans
    http://www.cnn.com/2012/09/18/opinion/granderson-romney-video/index.html?hpt=po_c2

  20. Seems loose cannons like Romney are easily recognized.

    ————————-

    (from the link): “No one stands to gain more from peace with Israel than Palestinians and no one stands to lose more in the absence of peace than Palestinians,” Erekat told Reuters. “Only those who want to maintain the Israeli occupation will claim the Palestinians are not interested in peace.”

    Erekat slams Romney remark that Palestinians against peace
    http://www.jpost.com/USPresidentialrace/Article.aspx?id=285459

  21. Ah…that old age question…..did Jesus have a wife?

    But, there is another question, did Jesus have a female disciple?

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/49075679/ns/technology_and_science-the_new_york_times/

  22. I now wonder even more why Mitt’s oldest son is named “Taggart.”
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dagny_Taggart#Dagny_Taggart

    Seriously, I’ve encountered these people tossing off the “personal responsibility” line since the 80s. It is essentially a sacrament for the social-Darwinist LIbertarian types. Translation:” You be personally responsible — screw off! Now, I’m off the casino! Whee!”

    http://apolyton.net/showthread.php/85194-William-Bennett-Lost-8-Million-Gambling

    The second link is an old reference, but what is the business of leveraged-buyouts but a rigged game?