Tax breaks? No, no, no! a thousand times, NO!

Yes, the economy is in trouble. Yes, new home sales are down. Yes, every financial institution is shedding workers faster than my Great Pyre sheds fur. Yes, we have structural, social, emotional, and serious economic problems facing us. All true, all sad, all present and in our face.

The worst possible response is the one our Fearless Leader, George W. Bush, presented. Unfortunately, his partner in crime, Nancy Pelosi, has already given George two gold stars:
first, any crime he committed in the past, or will commit in the future, gets a pass by congress; and,
second, she has already guaranteed that she will accept whatever proposal he recommends.

I guess Nancy Pelosi represents what constitutes leadership these days. I never realized that the Speaker of the House of Representatives was nothing more than a syncophantic, boot-licking, rubber-stamping, acquiescent, mindless, and ass-kissing lover of the president, even one as craven and illegitimate as this one.

Damn. Had I known that earlier, I would have signed and sent in my application for citizenship to Australia, Canada, Mexico, even Belgium. Little did I expect that a Democoratic Speaker would become the biggest supporter of our current administration.

Tax cuts ain’t gonna fix no economic problem like this. Let me restate this in English. There is NO FUCKING WAY that cutting taxes for business and giving a family of four $800 in tax credits will help.

That will simply make the structural problems worse, while making the leadership believe that they tried to fix it.

No, what we need is a goal, a revolution, and a plan to change how we live. Instead of pushing a junkie full of more junk, how about we take that money and make an impact elsewhere?

What if we spent $150,000,000,000 on this? Education, training, experimentation, and research on energy production and conservation. Instead of giving every tax payer $800, spending that money on energy programs, to increase efficiency, and create new sources would still stimulate the economy, but with a rational goal in mind.

How many Americans would get excited about that? How many would put their brains, energy, effort towards their, and their childrens’ futures? I suspect all of us would.

An energy program for the 21st Century would be a winner. It would change our perception of our country, our future, our problems.

Unfortunately, neither our GOP, nor our Democratic leadership has any interest in anything like that.


  1. BrianOKeeffe

    Tax cuts ??? You people have it all wrong, and should read the fine print. There ain’t no free lunch, and all that this Bush-Pelosi “economic stimulus package” is a election year flim-flam.

    Because all that these so-called “rebates” represent is an advance on your 2009 tax returns. Its like claiming an “extra” exemption on your 2008 tax return, but that in 2009 you’ll either get a smaller return or end up paying more tax money.

    That’s right, this is nothing more than a federal version of one of those sleazy payday advance outlets. And you will pay for it.

    See, e.g.:

    and H.R. 5140 @

  2. griff

    It seems we’ve misunderstood each other. I’m all for repealing the “free trade agreements” like NAFTA and imposing tariffs. That is Paul’s position as well.

  3. history guy

    Literacy rates have gone down in America since WWII. If you look at that same time period, federal oversight and overall spending have gone up consistently. The public systems with the highest per pupil spending have the lowest achievement. Try DC for example.

    I am a teacher and can’t find a single thing the federal government has done to improve schools in this country. Schools would improve if the federal government had no involvement in education.
    Finally , find where in the Constitution that the federal government was given any authority over education. It’s not there, its a local issue.

  4. JerryG

    Education a State Funding Issue?

    Sorry, I think not. Thomas Jefferson was a proponent of 4 basic principles that were key to the success and perpetuation of the new republic, one of which was the establishment of a publicly funded education system. Education (K-12) is just as much a national interest as defense, international diplomacy or border security. To suggest that the federal government should be out of the “education” business is completely irresponsible.

    Here in Florida, one of the lowest taxed States in the Nation (depending on how you measure it we’re either 41 or 45), we are about to choose if we should lower our property taxes – a majority of which will come from our State education budget. Since we’re already number 49 out of 50 of the States which spend the least per student, per capita what the hell, right? Can’t sink much lower than that!

    Florida Tax Facts:
    No State income tax
    Low excise taxes
    Low corporate taxes
    Low sales tax (county-by-county determined, still low)

  5. CheckerboardStrangler

    So the Johnson era’s Great Society has now been expanded to include the entire middle class…one gigantic welfare state, and it’s a BUSH ADMINISTRATION REPUBLICAN IDEA.

    Wow, how conservative of them…NOT.

  6. JoyfulC

    You need to take a deep breath, re-read what I posted, and see what I actually said.

    Why should we care about raising standards for the developing world? Off the top of my head I can think of a couple reasons: 1) reducing the potential for labour competition that we can’t possibly compete with without substantially lowering our own standards; and 2) to grow new markets which we, ourselves, can compete and sell in.

    You say look at what happened with the toys made in China recently because “they” ignored our regulations. That’s exactly my point: before a company can ship goods for sale in the US, we need a government that does more than simply put them on the honour system. We need our government to apply tariffs that would discourage companies from running over to manufacture in countries that don’t already have regulations comparable to our own, and a track record for enforcing them. Not only would this discourage companies who want to sell their products in the US from choosing to manufacture in countries that have no or insufficient regulation, it would also encourage countries that want to jump into the game to adopt regulations similar to our own.

    (And theoretically companies shouldn’t be too bothered by tariffs because few of them will face them if they’re conducting themselves responsibly and ethically — only those seeking slave-wage labour, no responsibility to consumers, and the ability to pollute the environment with impunity will face tariffs.)

    It’s odd because many “free market” idealists accuse me of being a protectionist — but as you point out, I’m not at all. (Actually you are.) I’m someone who sees the possibility of a global economy and a level playing field — only I’d like to see that playing field be raised for everyone else rather than lowered for us.

  7. peccavi

    Why is it that when anyone suggest tax breaks, a whole bunch people throw up their arms screaming “oh no the rich are getting a break, that’s not fair”. We need to jumpstart the economy, the more the interest rates decline, the more our currency becomes worthless. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad to be able to get a mortgage at a ridiculously low rate, but at what cost? Making the same amount of money but it’s worth less. I’m struggling to stay solidly in the middle-class, but the cost of foreign goods is rising, and while some of my customers are fairly affluent and recession proof, others are nervous and cautious and that slows my business down. In all the years I’ve been in commission sales and working with upper middle and upper-class clients, I see trickle down economics at work when the economy is going strong in taxes are reduced these people spend money. We need a fair tax system, we need to lower corporate tax rates. Living in Maryland, I see my energy costs dramatically increasing as our Democratic Governor Martin O’Malley has been adding every tax he can into the system, I fear this will be the same on a national level if either of the Democratic front-runners comes to office. Who will step up and be a third-party candidate? Tax reform and simplification called forth this stage in our economy, the Republicans at least have this right I hope I don’t have to vote for them, I don’t particularly like any of them either.

    Socially liberal, fiscally conservative… constitutionalist, libertarian…
    empower & encourage people to take care of themselves.
    the solution isn’t always to throw more $ at the proplem.

  8. ekaton

    And we are told that if we really care we will “vote” our way out of the mess we are in. So, please tell me, shall I vote for more Republican corruption or more Democratic corruption? The system is broken beyond the ability of the vote to repair it.

    It will soon become time to throw a few crates of tea into the Boston Harbor.

    — Kent Shaw

  9. ekaton

    I believe it is “keith” (keith, please correct me if I am in error) who occasionally posts on CHB who has much direct experience with the Canadian system, and has found it lacking in many ways. I believe the problems he relates could be corrected, however.

    The two health care systems often considered the best are those of France and Germany. I know nothing about them, so I guess its time to google them and see what comes up.

    — Kent Shaw

  10. griff

    Since when are we responsible for the rest of the world? I believe the document was entitled “The Constitution of the United States”, not “The Constitution of the World”.

    So you’re saying that we need to be brought down to third-world standards just to even up with the rest of the world?
    No thanks, you first.

    Besides, look what happened with the Chinese toys over the holidays. With the rapid dissemination of information these days, I believe the market is much better equipped to deal with rogue corporations than in previous years. And the government really didn’t have to do anything. The market took care of it. These companies ended up losing a lot of money in the prime buying season, not because of regulation, but because of the backlash from the public. The Chinese obviously ignored our regulations. So how would more regulation have helped that? I think that corporations would be much wiser to police themselves rather than incur the wrath of the buying public.

    I think that many people miss the point of Ron Paul’s position on many issues, including this one. A change like this would literally take years or decades. It is a re-learning process. I think he would also agree that you can’t really do away with regulation entirely; but when regulating bodies draw their employees from the very industry they are supposed to regulate, then you can’t really have a free market, and the regulating body is nothing more than a corrupt springboard for their buddies.

    The purpose of this campaign is to re-educate the American people on just what it means to be American. That the government’s job isn’t to take care of us from cradle to grave. We have been taught to look to the government for everything. We have become a nation of babies and whiners, looking for handouts at every turn.

    And what we got right now ain’t working, except for those that run the show.

  11. Flapsaddle

    At the risk of being thought rude, let me say something rude: Were you naive enough to expect any different performance from Ms. Pelosi? All that changed in November of 2006 was the feeding-order of the hogs at the trough. The swine remained swine.

    The so-called “choice” we have in our party system is really the fallacy of the false alternative. If I place before you a pile of fresh dog-droppings and a pile of fresh feline feces, what is the “choice” that you have?

    Most respectfully,

    T. J. Flapsaddle

  12. JoyfulC

    You’re entitled to think I’m simplistic and naive — I think you, and Ron Paul, are just plain wrong.

    Not only do we need to protect and defend our Middle Class, but we need to make it possible for Middle Classes to spring up around the world. To do that, we don’t need to back out of our trade agreements, but rather to go back in and redraft them, to close the loophole that allows big corporations to do an end-run around all that we’ve worked to achieve.

    The brutal truth that no one wants to utter is that perhaps labour is a bit over-priced in North America. Perhaps compensation for autoworkers did get a bit over the top. We need trade agreements that encourage _healthy_ competition.

    And although they don’t seem to have any internal mechanism for recognizing this, this in turn will be better in the longrun for big global corporations. Perhaps they won’t be able to shop for huge wage savings and zero environmental obligations, but it would encourage the growth of new healthy middle classes around the world. = new customer bases.

    The way things are going right now, the markets aren’t even doing what they need to do to sustain their own prosperity. Look how the Asian markets are dropping with fears of a recession in the US. When they kill the American middle class, they’ll have killed the Golden Goose. Sure, they can make goods more cheaply in other spots around the world — but let them try to sell them there for what they do here.

    We’ve listened to the “free market” ideologists, telling us what experts they are, all these years. And look where it’s gotten us. It’s time for some fresh ideas. Markets need regulation to balance the needs of people and the planet against their drive for profit. They’ve had every opportunity to demonstrate that they really can do the best job of regulating themselves, and they’ve failed miserably. In areas where businesses face the least regulation, they’ve made the biggest mash of things.

    I agree that enough is enough, and we only need as much federal government and regulation to be enough — but that’s more than we’ve got now, and more efficient. Not less!

  13. ekaton

    Kucinich is the best one out there, but he can’t get any press coverage because the warmongers own the presses and have decided he can’t participate in their little “debates” which are anything but a true debate. Whenthe press constantly pushes one or two candidates the sheep fall into line and ignore anyone else. If we really want “change” Kucinich is the one but he gets 4% of the primary votes in a state if he’s lucky.

    — Kent Shaw

  14. Cailleach

    Want to rescue the economy? Pull out of Iraq NOW, raise taxes on the top 10% of the wealthy, make corporations pay their fair share, re-build the infrastructure, and support sustainable energy and the jobs that would create.

    Don’t want to pay taxes? How else would you pay for a solid infrastructure (roads, bridges, power grid, communication grid, disaster response, health care we all can afford, etc., etc.)? With these services in the hands of private companies, there’s extra layers of profit built in. Extra profit = extra cost to consumers. Also extra gouging. Have you looked at the extra charges on your phone bill recently? There’s no such thing as a free lunch! And do you honestly think that small communities could assess themselves enough to pay for everything we all depend on? And wouldn’t that assessment be a tax? Government is fine as long as it’s open and honest. The war against government is a Neocon scam. GET REAL!

  15. Caine

    Good rant Rob, and I agree with what you said.

    My comment is regarding the intent of this “bailout”. Is it to really help the people, or is it really to help business? I have yet to see this administration do one, that is ONE, thing for the people. IMO, all they do is for business.

    I don’t see how giving the people money is going to help the people. I can see, however, how it will help business. Give the people money so they can spend it, so the businesses can continue their profits. Give those same businesses tax breaks, so that they can continue to profit. How is this going to help the people. In a month, everything will be back to where it is today, all “bailouts” used and gone and still at square one.

    This act will not create more jobs. It will only lead to more profits for the businesses. Does anyone think these businesses will hire more people? I sure don’t. They will do with the people they have and increase their corporate profits on top.

    All this will do is again raise our countries debt to other countries. How can that help the people? It can’t!

    This is all a ruse by this administration to make it look like it is being done to help the people, while all along it is directed at business!


  16. tropicaltaco

    Correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t Kucinich already calling for impeachment of the real evil doers and standing up to big business ? He will take us out of existing trade agreements. He is all about the constitution and ending the reign of big government and business over our lives. One of the few differences between Dennis and Dr. Paul is health care, I for one would like to try a single payer, not for profit, universal health care system. I get a lot of flack from right leaning friends who all say they know of a person from Canada or England that had to come to the states for treatment because health care in those countries is worthless. I saw Michael Moore’s Sicko, was that B.S ? If anyone besides these two gentle men win the presidency we better find a good place to make a stand and hold on tight.
    Can I get a show of hands of how many of you are still backing Dennis or Ron and if not, why not…

  17. Janice

    I agree with you too, Seal. This house of cards is teatering and about to fall – taking down the world financial markets with it. Prepare now, and hope for the best.

    Bush sure has created a legacy, hasn’t he..

  18. griff

    You misunderstand Paul’s position and the effect it would have on industry. Your argument is simplistic and naive. First of all, many of the policies he endorses would not happen overnight. He would still have to deal with the Congress and the Courts.

    The fact is, the way we are headed right now is toward a third-world service-based economy, like China and Mexico. The way to reverse that is to back out of these so-called trade agreements and stop subsidizing outsourcing.

    There are other ways to keep corporations in check, such as strengthening unions, which are all but impotent these days. Nevada, for example, is heavily unionized, and they enjoy a healthy economy and standard of living.

    Then there’s the market. The market can deal with rogue corporations much easier and faster than a sympathetic and corrupt government.

    The system we have right now, and that will continue under any other candidate, rewards corporations for abandoning this country and moving production overseas.

    The problems we face are today are complex and easily misunderstood, and Paul will be the first to say that the solutions won’t be easy, either. One thing that seperates Paul from the others is the fact that he has ideas for change. Not only that, but he will also admit that he doesn’t have all the answers, but he is willing to work toward agreeable solutions in a non-partisan way.

    One way to break the gridlock in Washington is to elect a President that truly wants to put America, and Americans, first. A President that will listen to all positions, and make thoughtful and careful decisions based on what is in the best interest of The People.

    So all I am saying is let’s look at the overall picture of what this country needs in the White House, and that is a President with a brain, and one that isn’t afraid to use it.

    We in this country have come to believe that the President is more powerful and important than he actually is. There are still two other branches of government that are supposedly equal in power. Ron Paul wants to return that balance to government.

    So really, the real question is this…Do we really want change in Washington? From the looks of the race so far, the only thing that will change are the names and the faces.

    The government that governs the least is the government that governs best. From what you are saying, you want more government. I just hope you’re happy with what you get.

  19. JoyfulC

    I can’t agree with Ron Paul’s solution at all. The solution isn’t to get rid of most of the federal government — that would only serve to save corporations a fortune in lobbying and bribes. Then they could go on their merry way with no pesky regulation to interfere with their profits — such as regulations to ensure that they pay fair wages, provide safe working conditions, produce safe products and ethical services, and behave responsibly towards the environment. Then they could operate here the same way they do in, say, China. Or Mexico. And we, on the other hand, would live the same way people do in, say, China. Or Mexico. Sound good?

    No. The solution is the wrestle the federal government away from industry and big business, kick it in the butt, and get it back to doing its job — which is making and enforcing regulation that protects and preserves the interests of the people.

    And sure Mr. Paul, and others, want to get rid of the despised IRS and income tax in favour of “consumption taxes.” That makes perfect sense. With corporations cutting more jobs here, and paying less when they do hire someone, the government has to go to a more predatory means of taking our money. I never liked the idea of income taxes, but one advantage they have is that it ensures that it’s in the government’s best interest to keep people gainfully employed. With consumption taxes, you only have to keep them eating.

    America’s strength lies in its Middle Class — but unfortunately, that very Middle Class is under attack, and our own federal government is doing more to assist the attackers than to defend us. We need leaders who can strengthen our federal government and get it back on track working for the people of the United States.

  20. ekaton

    Economic Stimulus Package: Borrow $140 billion, give it to the masses and call it a gift because they are too stupid to realize they will have to pay it back double with interest to Communist Red China. It won’t create jobs. People will pay bills and buy this year’s left over inventory of JUNK.

    — Kent Shaw

  21. SEAL

    No matter how much we rant and explain, nothing will prevent them from continuing their stupid course of action. Therefore, we will not have a ressesion. It will just go on until the whole thing collapses and we have a meltdown and full blown depression. I’m not educated about it enough to guess at how long it will take but it can’t be too much longer. Like I said someplace before. The smart thing to do is begin to prepare for it. Reduce your standard of living and get out of debt. You don’t have many more years to do that.

  22. BrianOKeeffe

    Great….a new “economic stimulus package” so the masses can remain in line at the local check cashing outlet, and so the hedge fund operators can maintain their fine wine cellars.

    Doesn’t the fact that we are now entering a recession demonstrate that Bush’s tax cuts didn’t prevent our economic woes in the face of the market place’s gobalization? Borrowing more and more money for the Bush-Pelosi “stimulus package” is crazy and merely stalls for short term political gains on what will surely come, a more severe economic downturn.

    While I am in fundamental agreement with the views expressed by Rob and Mikee59, perhaps, a hard recession would be a good thing for our country. Perhaps a recession would serve as the needed wake-up call that we need to end the credit-card mentality that has taken hold.

  23. LurkingFromTheLeft

    Oh Thank Dog

    …and praise cheeses!

    …the farm/house/car/groceries for the month have been saved –

    …but only a portion of ONE of them –

    …the only good thing is we’re under a year now!

    …sad thing is, his replacements aren’t much better –

    …we want Bill R!


  24. griff


    Where have you been? There is a revolution happening right now, but you and most others in the media refuse to acknowledge it.

    Ron Paul is the real deal. The candidate that everyone wants but noone will acknowledge. Dr. Paul stands for the kind of change that everyone is screaming for, but are too afraid to vote for.

    But are we truly ready for real and fundamental change? I don’t think so. We say we are, but we once again will be guided by the mainstream media and the polished plutocrats and we will again elect the absolute worst candidate.

    Besides, as Paul points out, our educational system was the finest in the world until the creation of the Department of Education. Paul is ridiculed for his wanting to dissolve the DOE. But superficially, this seems radical, but all he wants is to give the responsibility of educating our children back to the states and local governments, where people will become more involved in the decision-making.

    His arguments for many of his positions are similar. The Federal Government is incapable and irresponsible with the power that they have.

    So once and for all, let’s put our money where our mouths are (while it’s still worth something), put aside petty and inconsequential religious and social differences and get back to what turned this country from a rag-tag group of colonies into the greatest country on Earth…The Constitution of the United States.