Wisconsin Wins Battle...

>> Monday, March 14, 2011



...War Still To Be Decided

10 comments:

Mark March 14, 2011 at 12:53 PM  

We need to Bust ALL the unions, but especially public sector unions.

BenT - the unbeliever,  March 14, 2011 at 1:12 PM  

That's a nice little rhetorical flourish pretending that teachers, firefighters, policemen, meat inspectors, city and county road workers are all individually stealing from your pocket. And pretending like they don't pay the same taxes that every other citizen does, or that public sector unions are nefarious groups.

The truth is that Americans pay FAR more in subsidies and rebates to industries and corporations than public employees (if you don't count the military). But hey Exxon getting $500-million a year is how we improve our nation. Just like limiting the future earning potential of teachers?

Unions are as much of a part of our capitalistic system as the idea of supply and demand. It makes sense in a system where corporations have outsize power at the negotiating table for small players to band together to increase negotiating power.

BenT - the unbeliever,  March 14, 2011 at 1:21 PM  

What conservatives once thought of unions
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HsHXJr8tqP0

ELAshley March 14, 2011 at 4:28 PM  

You're deflecting the argument Ben, and to a large extent, preaching to the choir. If the idea of corruption betwixt public sector unions and "Bought 'n Paid-For" politicians isn't a concern to you, then we have nothing more to discuss.

I, personally, don't feel we should be subsidizing ANYTHING or anyone apart from the obviously and truly poor and down-trodden. 35% of the US population are recipients of welfare. Can we honestly say that America is doing well? Can it honestly be said that government is the best solution to the various and sundry ills facing this nations' future? What is so wrong with returning to the principle CLEARLY laid down in the 10th Amendment? Government has CLEARLY overstepped its bounds. If we do nothing to curb the gluttony on BOTH sides of the aisle, there soon won't be a country left worth calling America. Or do you prefer to allow our government to continue on the wasteful and destructive course it's on?

I DON'T CARE WHAT Conservatives used to think. What bearing does that have on anything happening today? Democrats used to think slavery was a good and honorable practice. They were forced to learn the error of their ways and slavery is now a thing of the past. That's a good thing.

It's time to stop pointing fingers backward and start looking forward to genuine "real-world" solutions. The UN, as a condition to bailing out Greece, demanded that that nation institute austerity measures; cutting back on union benefits, retirement ages, etc. How is it we can demand this of Greece but hold ourselves to a different standard?

The simple truth is, collective bargaining rights, within public sector unions, is a very very bad idea. Even FDR, the paragon of democratic/liberal thought, said as much...

"[a] strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to obstruct the operations of government until their demands are satisfied. Such action looking toward the paralysis of government by those who have sworn to support it is unthinkable and intolerable."

--taken from "FDR: Public-Sector Unions Must Not Be Allowed to Strike."

See also, from the New York Times:

F.D.R. Warned Us.

ELAshley March 14, 2011 at 4:44 PM  

Those "brave workers in Poland" were fighting against a communistic regime. If we continue down the path liberals and unions are pushing us, WE will live in a communistic society.

It's easy to dredge up seemingly unflattering lines of speech from one of a party's great heroes and cry 'gotcha!' But as I stated in my previous comment, the vaunted FDR himself warned against the tyranny Public-Sector Unions could bring to bear against our government. States don't have the luxury of printing money to make up the short-fall. Sadly, the federal government isn't compelled to balance it's own yearly budget, let alone provide one.

If we're going to fix our debt and save our economy, we're going to have to check our egos and ideologies at the door. If some commonsense is not interjected into this debate, this nation will quickly fade into the history books. And if you can't see that, whoever you are, nothing I've said here will sway you, and we might as well close up shop. If we continue down this path, we will cease to be the free nation we once held in high esteem.

BenT - the unbeliever,  March 15, 2011 at 1:08 AM  

If you're serious about our federal deficit then you support ending the Bush Tax Cuts. The extension of those tax cuts make up about 70% of our deficit for the next fiscal year. The next easiest way to cut the deficit is to end completely our military exercises in Afghanistan and Iraq. Those are the two biggest chunks of next year's federal deficit.

Now have any conservatives been talking up either of those options? ... No

Have they instead targeted things like community health centers, public employees, and education, NPR and the NEA? ... Yes

It's pretty clear that the conservative movement leaders are using the budget deficit (which they didn't care about in December when they held unemployment assistance hostage for the extension of the Bush Tax Cuts) are using the budget deficit as a rhetorical club to cut democratic programs.

Our federal budget is in a straight because of long-term strategies by the Republican Party. The party of cutting federal revenues with tax cuts and corporate loopholes and industry subsidies and giveaways while at the same time implementing massive new programs (Homeland Security, Medicare Part D, No Child Left Behind). Then when the bill comes due they point their fingers and say "Oh, those big spending Democrats." Democrats haven't enacted a new major policy or government expansion in 30 years.

So this sudden fixation on our federal budget sounds a little like crocodile tears. Your going to have to make some real concessions and confessions before I'd support conservative "fiscal discipline".

Something like returning to the tax rates under Reagan or Clinton, or perhaps means testing for Social Security and Medicare for those making over $1mill a year, or perhaps eliminating the home mortgage interest deduction, or at least disallow it for second homes, or maybe remove the loophole that lets hedge fund managers pay a 15% tax rate while I pay 23%. But conservatives can't support common sense ideas like these, because then they'd be called names by Grover Norquist.

Edwin Drood March 15, 2011 at 11:20 AM  

"If you're serious about our federal deficit then you support ending the Bush Tax Cuts."

Historically higher taxes bring in less revenue.
http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=us+tax+rate

So if were serious about our federal deficit they you WOULD NOT support ending the Bush Tax Cuts.

But thats totally off topic, I think you were trying to defend unions bribing positions for higher wages.

ELAshley March 18, 2011 at 6:18 PM  

"If you're serious about our federal deficit then you support ending the Bush Tax Cuts. The extension of those tax cuts make up about 70% of our deficit for the next fiscal year."

The fact that you believe this would solve anything beautifully illustrates how blind you are to the reality Drood and others (here and abroad) have stated. Take away the tax cuts and the economy will languish. Raising taxes only forces people to hoard... not spend. And without spending revenue is limited to what the government can take from a man's paycheck. [BTW, these tax cuts have been dubbed the Obama Tax Cuts by the Obama administration itself and its media butt-kissers].

Drood is right; historically, tax cuts increase tax revenue. That you can't, or will not see this, shows you aren't the least bit interested in a serious discussion. The only folks interested in having a serious discussion, according to you and yours, are those who accept your every talking point as gospel. Well sorry, that's not how open dialog works. This particular trope is fallacious at best.


"...end completely our military exercises in Afghanistan and Iraq."

I couldn't agree with you more. But why stop there? Let's pull our troops out of South Korea as well. Perhaps even Germany. Granted, there's no conflict going on in the Korea's or Germany, but the cost of running those operations is undoubtedly high. Let's pull all our troops out of other countries and focus on securing our own border.

Do all this and we're still screwed. Our government would find other things to spend all that money on... especially the Obama administrations. And you know this is true.

"[Conservatives have targeted] public employees..."

No, not public employees... only their unions. I find it curious that you've overlooked the words of FDR regarding Public-Sector Unions. You can't even consider undisputed liberal commonsense from one of the fathers of big government. Well, you're not going to listen to this guy either: from Limbaugh, today... "Are we finally gonna put our foot down and say, 'There's gonna have to be some reasonable and sensible action here on how public sector employees are paid,' or are the taxpayers of this country going to have as their first responsibility the lifestyle support of public sector union members?"

Well, are we? Is it the American people's first responsibility to support the lifestyles of public sector unions? If you want a legitimate seat at this table, you're going to have to address this question. Why do public-sector workers who, by definition work for the American taxpayers, deserve to earn on average near twice as much in wages and retirement benefits, as their private sector counterparts. If you can't answer this, please step away from the table.

ELAshley March 18, 2011 at 6:50 PM  

Continuing....

"It's pretty clear that the conservative movement leaders are using the budget deficit ...as a rhetorical club to cut democratic programs."

What's crystal clear, is that Pelosi's congress refused to even do their constitutional duty to provide a budget for this current fiscal year. They FAILED to do their duty... to protect their sacrosanct programs. What they did was this: knowing a defeat was immanent in November 2010, they calculated an abdication of their constitutional duty so they could decry, as you are doing here, Conservatives trying to whittle down the deficit. This makes Pelosi's democrats a pack of cowards. This so-called 'rhetorical club' is being wielded by you and every other deluded, self-righteous democrat. You have no courage to address real issues, choosing instead to beat every dead horse you can drag into the room. I'm not impressed. In fact, I'm beginning to be bored by your infantile arguments.

"Our federal budget is in a straight because of long-term strategies by the Republican Party."

You're insane. BOTH parties are equally culpable. Especially Pelosi's congress which she touted would be the most ethical and transparent congress in the history of congress. Right. Only a fool would believe it. Only a fool and liar would repeat it.

"Democrats haven't enacted a new major policy or government expansion in 30 years."

You can't possible be this dense... Can you?

"Your [sic] going to have to make some real concessions and confessions before I'd support conservative "fiscal discipline".

I'll make confessions and concessions when you do. I'll hearken back to my previous comment: "The only folks interested in having a serious discussion, according to you and yours, are those who accept your every talking point as gospel." You don't get to set the premise of the argument, Ben. You position is not the de facto moral center here. I'm not saying mine is either, but you're going to have get off your high horse if we're to have an honest debate.

"...tax rates under Reagan or Clinton..."

Reagan's top marginal tax rate for 82-86 was 50%, dropping to 38.5% in 87, and 28% in 88. Clinton stayed at 39.6% for 7 of his 8 years. The Bush tax cuts? 38.6% in 2001-02, and 35% from '02 to present. [link]

Should government have the right to take HALF of everything you earn? That's what it was under Reagan. You're crying now about taxes being too low? At 35%? You want the government taking HALF of what you earn. Well, if you feel so strongly about it, send the government 15% of your biweekly net. But who are you and every other democrat that you think I don't pay enough?

"...means testing for Social Security and Medicare..."

Excellent! We agree! But it doesn't solve the problem. It's just not enough.

ELAshley March 18, 2011 at 7:00 PM  

Continuing...

"perhaps eliminating the home mortgage interest deduction, or at least disallow it for second homes, or maybe remove the loophole that lets hedge fund managers pay a 15% tax rate while I pay 23%."

EXCELLENT! We agree, although I'm amenable to keeping the home mortgage interest deduction for first-home buyers, for a period of 5-7 years. But for the rest, I agree. Why should you pay a 23% tax rate? For that matter, why should ANYONE pay a 50% tax rate? Where is the equity in taking from a man 50% of every thing he earns?

"But conservatives can't support common sense ideas like these...."

You've not been listening.

Commonsense is not your forte. If it were you'd not cling to ideological tropes and misconceptions about the 'opposition.' Which is another thing wrong with America. We should not be 'opposed' to each other. We should BOTH have the same desire to see America strong and solvent. Sadly, we do NOT have the same desires for America.

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