Permacarn’s Weblog

A Permanent Blog Carnival

Obama VS McCain On Taxes

The current state of our economy is not one of enthusiastic confidence and unbridled investment. We’ve got significant debt as a nation that we’re all going to have to pay off for many years to come. But before we as a nation start paying it off, both presidential candidate’s tax proposals plan on adding to it for the next few years. John McCain the self proclaimed “economically conservative Republican” is speaking out against his opponent Obama on the tax front. But the two candidates’ tax proposals and their projected consequences viewed side by side show that for a Democrat, Obama’s plan appears to be the one thats more conservative.

In a recent authoratative analysis provided by The Tax Policy Center stated that “Senator Obama’s plan would add $3.3 trillion to the national debt (including additional interest costs), while Senator McCain’s plan would add $4.5 trillion.

The analysis also showed that under Senator Obama’s plan revenues would total 18.2 percent of GDP in 2013 compared to McCain’s plan where the revenue yield would be 17.8 percent. A difference of .4 percent doesn’t seem like much, but when we’re talking GDP, that’s huge.

And while John McCain is pandering to Middle America saying that he’s in touch with what everyday Americans are experiencing when he lives in the lap of luxury with his millionaire heiress wife and says things like the drawdown of troops in Iraq isn’t important and that economists don’t know what they’re talking about, he doesn’t tell Middle America that his tax plan is designed to significantly benefit those in the upper-most income brackets. He doesn’t tell you that Obama’s plan is more suited to people who don’t make a significant amount of money.

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June 13, 2008 Posted by | Elections, John McCain | , , , , | 3 Comments

Obama Wins!

Obama has clinched the nomination after receiving the necessary 2118 delegates becoming the first African American to be a presidential nominee. Now all there is to do is convince Clinton to concede. At her speech, which some expected to be a concession, she announced that at this time she is not going to make a decision. But that doesn’t change the math.

Man it feels good to be right.

June 3, 2008 Posted by | Elections | , | Leave a comment

Crap Videos

This video finally explains in a soft and fuzzy kinda way the malicious reason Clinton is still running.

I never thought I would see a video of Michelle Obama with Metallica playing in the background. But, there it is. True Republican BS.

May 22, 2008 Posted by | Elections | , , , | Leave a comment

Hillary Clinton Supporters And The Tale Of The Three Candy Bars

So if you watch CNN or any other news network for that matter and have been paying attention to the Democratic Primaries in any way you’ve probably heard pundits report that alot of Hillary Clinton supporters are saying that they wouldn’t vote for Barack Obama if he were the nominee. So I wanted to come up with a way to explain to those people why they should just chillax for a minute and change their eagerly and overly resentful attitude. I doubt it will have much of an effect but perhaps will give pause.

So you’re in a group of people who combined have just the right amount of money to buy a candy bar and you’ve got a choice between three kinds. There’s the one you really like thats got all the good stuff in it you like. Then there’s the one thats kinda similar to your favorite, a few ingredients are different but the basic formula is still there. Then there’s the one you’re allergic to. You ate one a while back and you had a severe reaction to it. So you vote for the one you really like. But there’s a split decision in the majority of the group between your second favorite that has a few different ingredients and the one you really don’t like. Your favorite candy bar is no longer a choice and you’re foced to recast your vote for the two remaining. One of your friends whom you most recently got into a tiff with is on the side that wants your second favorite and is trying to convince the group to go for that one. They really don’t want that third candy bar. So out of spite you forget your allergic reaction and vote for your least favorite. The group that wanted the bad candy bar won it with your vote and you were stuck with a candy bar that makes you sick.     

So here’s the breakdown. Hillary Clinton is your favorite candy bar. Barack Obama is the candy bar that has a few different ingredients but has the same basic formula. Politically, the two are similar except on a few issues like Health Care and foreign relations. John McCain is the third candy bar that you had an allergic reaction to. The metaphorical allergies of which I speak are the policies of a Republican administration. The last eight years have been a true test of our nation and of its leaders and it appears our leaders have failed our nation. A John McCain candy bar (administration) would no doubt bring on the same allergic reaction you experienced in the past.

The tiff spoken of in this parable that you had with your friend was the Democratic Primary. Its been hard on all of us as Democratic voters to see the candidate we love to be spoken of badly. But thats no reason to go voting for the completely opposite thing that you know is bad when it comes to politics or candy bars.

May 21, 2008 Posted by | Elections | , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Chris Matthews Schools Kevin James

Usually I can’t stand the sound of Chris Matthews’ voice. After about three minutes it begins to sound like nails on a chalkboard. But seeing what he did to conservative commentator Kevin James on Hardball tonight brought a smile to my face and I was able to deal with the chalkboard for the rest of the evening and I will no doubt be replaying the clip over and over.

It all started when Kevin James came on and began saying that Obama’s suggestion that he would engage in diplomatic discussions with Iran was comparable to what Neville Chamberlain did prior to WWII. I expected alot more out of Kevin James. I know a lot of conservatives who just walk around repeating what they hear on Fox News or their favorite conservative radio talk show. Apparently Kevin James is just as ignorant. When asked what it was Chamberlain did that would provoke such a comparison, he merely repeated over and over “he was an appeaser.” Matthews didn’t necessarily disagree that Chamberlain was an appeaser, but he put James to task so that we could better understand just how engaging in discussions with Iran was like giving Hitler half of Czechoslovakia. Apparently James had absolutely no idea what Chamberlain did, and thank goodness Matthews was intelligent enough to call him out on it. But the three people were referring to different dates and presidents when it came to the attack on the USS Cole one year before 9/11. Factually, it occurred under the last two months of the Clinton administration in October of 2000. But when Kevin James states that 9/11 was a result of inaction on the part of the Clinton administration, the USS Cole argument is weak. The effort in response to the USS Cole would have ultimately fallen in the hands of the Bush administration.

So what exactly does this word that everyone’s been throwing around, appeasement, mean? In the instance that Bush used it, I would prefer to use the first two definitions. They’re warm and fuzzy like “bring to a state of peace” and “relieve.” But the third definition is a nasty one; “to yield to the billigerent demands of a nation in a cinciliatory effort, at the expense of justice or other principles.” Definitely the definition Bush and James were using.

It’s interesting to see how conservative bloggers are defending James. Take a look around at some conservative blogs. When you watch the video, its hard not to feel sorry for anyone trying to defend Kevin James. Oh, and be careful when you search for Kevin James, the guy who played Doug on The King of Queens shares the same name, but probably not the same ideology.

May 15, 2008 Posted by | Elections | , , , , | Leave a comment

Pat Buchanan

Pat Buchanan tonight said that the only reason Barack Obama is close to clinching the nomination of the Democratic party is because he’s black. “If Barack Obama were not African-American, John Edwards would have defeated him. Geraldine Ferraro, while taking a lot of heat, was right in what she said. She spoke the truth.” What is it about Obama being black that people feel has been so key to his success? Is it the fact that he’s received a huge majority of the black vote? Because black people have been voting for white people for years and to say that they would have all gone to someone else is not realistic. And who is ANYONE ANYWHERE EVER to say what or who someone would be if  their races were reversed? We should put Black Like Me on Pat Buchanan’s “to read” list.

Buchanan also rambled about how the media coverage has been unfair to West Virginians, “you’re sitting here calling them poor and uneducated or half-educated…” In fact, in comparison to the rest of the country, WV is last in everything good (literacy rates) and first in everything bad (poverty). It’s funny that Buchanan demands the “truth” be spoken with something as unknowable as who or where Barack Obama would be if he were white, but when it comes to the facts of the state of WV, he demands a level of courtesy that Clinton refuses to extend to states she lost to Obama. I recall her campaign saying things along the lines of “those states that Obama won are small and don’t matter. We’re looking at the big states that matter in the general election.” Maybe they should have run their campaign like they were in a primary and not a general election like Obama did. Sure he won small states that aren’t huge players in the general election, but Clinton’s argument that she won states vital to the Democrats in November and she should be the nominee because she did good in those states is weak and has been weakening since Indiana and North Carolina. But we’re reminded of the same point made before; this is not the general election. More and more people are beginning to see through the parallels that Clinton is trying to draw between what happened in the primaries to what will happen in November.

 

May 14, 2008 Posted by | Elections | , , , , , | 1 Comment

John Edwards Endorses Obama

CNN is reporting that John Edwards is set to endorse Barack Obama. It will be interesting to hear the reaction from the Clinton campaign. Recall James Carville’s likening Bill Richardson’s endorsement of Obama to Judas’s betrayal of Jesus. There are no holidays in coming days that would allow for a convenient metaphor, but then again Edwards doesn’t have the history with the Clintons that Richardson did so betrayal is not the word. Perhaps the Clinton’s will say it just makes sense. Despite having been defeated by Clinton in W.V. by a huge margin, Obama still has more pledged and superdelegates. Oh, and she still thinks that MI should be seated the way the votes came in even though Obama wasn’t on the ballot. Has anyone told her that she still wouldn’t win even if they were seated the way the votes came in?

In Republican news 15% of Republicans in W.V. voted for someone other than John McCain even though he is the Republican nominee and none of the other candidates are campaigning and have all endorsed McCain (except Ron Paul). Personally, I think this is much more interesting than Edwards’ endorsement.

May 14, 2008 Posted by | Elections | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Don’t Count Out The Female Vote In Indiana

According to CNN exit polls the Democratic vote by gender in Indiana was 56% female to 44% male. In a time when the white male vote is being debated, Hillary Clinton won Indiana by a narrow margin arguably due to the high female turnout that voted in her favor. The voting results for each candidate were mirrors in terms of gender with Clinton winning 51% of females and Obama winning 51% of males. More females voted than males and more females voted for Hillary Clinton.

Lest we forget there is still a Republican primary going on. Republican Indiana voters consistently threw more of their votes towards Ron Paul than Mitt Romney and at a time when people are worried about Democrats being bitter in November after a tough Primary Season and going Republican, signigicant portions of Republicans in every state have cast their votes towards candidates other than John McCain. Collectively, their votes don’t outmatch McCains overwhelming majority, but this should give more people pause when the fact is the Republican party already has their nominee and the other Republican candidates have already endorsed John McCain (except for maybe Ron Paul). Which way are those votes going to go come November?

 

May 6, 2008 Posted by | CNN, Elections | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

McCain and Clinton’s Summer Gas Tax Holiday

creepyAfter news was released that the proposed summer gas tax holiday would save consumers $28  in three months, McCain told a town-hall audience in Denver: “I want to give the American consumer a little bit of relief just for the summer. Maybe they’ll be able to buy an additional textbook for their children when they go back to school this fall.” That’s it? A Textbook? You’re putting up a fuss for something that’s going to allow me to buy a $28 textbook? That’s not even a tank of gas.

He also says that with the approval of a gas tax holiday that would likely remove $10 billion from roadway maintenance and upgrades “Americans will have a little extra something to put in their pocketbooks.” Who uses pocketbooks anymore? I don’t even know what a pocketbook is. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one. I know when I think of pocketbooks I think of my grandmothers change purse that she used to give me antique nickels out of. I don’t want nickels.

He also says that we should stop putting oil into the strategic petroleum reserves in order to alleviate prices. Good idea. Reduce the amount of oil we have in our “strategic” reserves. A “strategic” reserve that’s put in place to alleviate the devastation in the event of a national emergency should not be tapped to save people less than what their cell phone bill is each month especially under the current circumstances of high demand and low production. Cheaper gas, if it actually got cheaper, would increase demand for gas allowing drivers to consume it at a faster rate while production would remain the same (low) and as a result would raise prices shortly after the Holiday was over.  

Of the three candidates John McCain is the most out of touch. These statements as well as his other gaffes on Al-Qaeda in Iraq and his Freudian slip on how the war in Iraq was about oil, are telling of McCain’s sense of current events.  McCain said at a recently rally, where he announced his newest market based health insurance program, that millions of dollars can be saved with prevention. “Take a little time to eat better, make sure you walk for about 30 or so minutes a day and you won’t have to worry about these afflictions.” Seriously? If I eat better and walk for 30 minutes a day I don’t have to worry about cancer or diabetes or any other life threatening disease that would no doubt bankrupt me were I to require hospitalization?

At least Hillary Clinton is smart enough to never say anything that would even slightly reveal how little money the gas tax holiday would save people. She’s instead threatening oil companies with a “windfalls profit” tax, an expense that the slick oil companies are sure to incorporate into the cost of a gallon. But it looks good to the uneducated white folks for Hillary Clinton to be rattling the cages of oil companies. They’ve been eating up her antics as of late.

Obama’s already been through this. He ended up costing the state of Illinois several million dollars with his gas tax relief plan a few years ago and evidence shows it would be costly financially, strategically, and occupationally. For once, Clinton and McCain would have to cede to Obama’s experience on an issue. But don’t hold your breath waiting for them to let up.   

 

May 3, 2008 Posted by | Elections | , , , , | Leave a comment

Michael Moore on Larry King

michael mooreWearing one of his signature ball caps, (this one with a Java Joe’s Cafe logo) Michael Moore gave a somewhat revealing interview on CNN’s Larry King, though most people familiar with the movie director and his views would have been able to anticipate what was to be said and what topics would be discussed. Nonetheless, whether you love him or hate him you’d be hardpressed not to find something to talk about after watching.

The first topic that Larry King asked about involved Mr. Moore’s recent endorsement of Barack Obama and why it is that he chose to endorse the candidate who’s taken some significant contributions from the health care industry, as opposed to endorsing a candidate with whom he expressed a forbidden desire for in one of his book’s chapter titles (but who has also taken some substantial contributions from the health care industry). He basically expressed a high level of disappointment with her since she voted for the war from the get go. He, as well as millions of other people, are choosing not to cast their vote the way of the Clintons (yes, Clintons plural) in part because of her voting record and in part to her antics of late. Mr. Moore held fast in the face of a question from a viewer who asked if he still insists on Senator Clinton apologizing for her vote authorizing the war despite the shaky evidence that was provided to senators in the early stages of the pre-emptive invasion. The viewer, and Mr. Moore, failed to include the fact that Senator Clinton opted not to read the evidence herself, but his reasoning was sound. A little over 30%, or 100 million people, in the build up to war were opposed (including Obama) to going. She did not exercise the judgment to vote against something so damaging, and as a result is paying for it politically and will continue to pay for it politically.

With Mr. Moore’s release of Sicko, which arguably breathed new life into the health care debate in American politics, a discussion of the industry and the candidates was inevitable. He expressed disappointment with both candidates in the Democratic party as neither, in his mind, would do much to address the real issue of giving the insurance companies too much decision making power in the process. But comparatively, Senator McCain’s plan which was recently announced was enought to bring Michael Moore to laughter. McCain’s plan is market based and would indirectly make health insurance less affordable for millions of people (as if there aren’t enough). Under his plan, Moore says, people would have the option of dropping their employer’s insurance plan and pick up the tab themselves. As an enticement the government would throw a tax deduction of $5,000 their way. But Mr. Moore brought up a good point. The average person paying for health insurance outside of the assistance of an employer is paying around $12,000. With the tax deduction under McCain’s plan, the average person would be paying aroudn $7,000; a little bit more than what alot of people already pay a year with their employers assistance. Laughable, indeed.

He didn’t stop there in his critique of John McCain. His most recent attempt to pander to the American people with a “gas tax holiday” is seen through Michael Moore’s eyes as a gimmick (one that Hillary Clinton is proud to call her own). Instead of speaking about how little an impact it would have on the people and the economy, Mr. Moore used the opportunity to address some more pressing matters, like the most recent voluntary rice regulations some large retailers are imposing on their customers in the US. This, he states, is an event which will be remembered as a turning point in our lives in terms where some of the biggest changes in the effects of fuel expenses, oil dependence and an unwilling American industry reluctant to convert to alternative fuels or high efficiency automobiles. Detroit and the auto industry no doubt have the ability to manufacture cars that can get rediculously high milage. But the important thing to remember, in Mr. Moore’s eyes as well as many other people’s, is that more than just gasoline and deisel is extracted from a barrell of oil. Fertilizers and plastics, two things that our country is dependent on, are already experiencing significant price increases and with the earths supplies dwindling to “less than eight years worth,” a figure Michael Moore used perhaps not loosely enough, prices are sure to maintain their current upward trends.

Larry King also asked about Michael Moore’s next documentary film release. The movie called We Were This Close, tells the story of the 2004 presidential election. Larry King didn’t allow for many plugs like he did with Janet Jackson, but we did learn that Michael Moore hopes to release the film in time to coincide with the Democratic National Convention when the Democratic presidential candidate is announced. This, he hopes, will serve to remind people of what is needed in order to change the face of politics at a time when Democrats may still be feeling the sting of a tough Democratic Primary race. But nothing, he says, will compare to the sting that 4 more years of Bush policies in the guise of a McCain administration would deliver.

Some other things we learned in the interview;

  • Michael Moore owns a gun (the one he got for free for opening a bank account in Bowling for Columbine) and he feels guilty for owning it. He expressed a desire to auction it off and donate the proceeds to a charitable organization, so keep your eye out for a Michael Moore charity auction all you NRA folks!
  • The first things he would do as president- 1) End the war. 2) Get government back in the hands of the people and out of the hands of corporations, and 3) Give every American free HBO. The quality of their programming is of such high quality that he feels it should be provided to all citizens free of charge. Apparently PBS is less entertaining than HBO (who knew?).  

April 30, 2008 Posted by | CNN | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment