Archive for ‘Taxes and Debt’

September 26, 2012

The Broken Mirror

Contributed by Shell Suber 

Our skyrocking national debt is America’s greatest threat. According to Pew, 7 of 10 surveyed would support a deficit reduction compromise that includes a combination of tax increases and spending reductions on major programs. Were Congress a true reflection of America, wouldn’t roughly 70% – or around 375 members – feel similarly?

I bet there aren’t a dozen members of Congress who would dare to hint at such a proposal and I know why. Ronald Reagan was right: Gerrymandering has ruined our Legislative branch.

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September 14, 2012

Gov. Romney, quit your campaign. Instead, apply for the job.

Contributed by Shell Suber 

Governor Romney, quit now. End your campaign today. You’re a smart guy. You can read a poll and you know when a political campaign over. At this point even a huge crisis (Eurozone / Middle East) probably will not change things by Election Day. This political campaign is over.

Just as well because – let’s be honest – you are not a professional politician like your opponent. You’ve been good enough to get this far but now you are up against a career professional – something you are not. You are a businessman. In fact, you are a legendary businessman. So stop running a political campaign and start applying for the job as Chief Executive of the US Government.

This isn’t a political campaign. It’s a job interview. Stop giving the same tired political stump speech over and over – changing a line here and there to fit that day’s news cycle. Change everything. You are one of the world’s most accomplished CEOs and you are addressing the shareholders of the largest company in the world. Convince them to hire you. Sell them on why they must hire you before it’s too late.

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July 16, 2012

Public funding for the arts is a luxury

Contributed by Shell Suber

The arts are an essential part of a healthy society. Those who believe this should always support them.

For many years we have even set aside public money to sustain and promote the arts and should be happy and thankful that we have the means to do so. But, funding the arts, as important as they are, is not a critical function of government – society, to be sure – but not government necessarily.

We all long for the salad days of low unemployment, plentiful, high paying jobs, a growing economy, and surpluses in our public coffers. But these are hard economic times and government must focus on critical needs and leave direct funding of the arts to citizens who can afford it. If you are such a person, I urge you to give to the arts.

Governor Haley is honoring her responsibility, we must honor ours.

July 11, 2012

Is Atlas going on strike?

Contributed by Shell Suber 

The working title of “Atlas Shrugged” was “The Strike.” The plot is based on an intriguing philosophical question in the imagination of novelist Ayn Rand: What if society’s true producers and entrepreneurs were to, by their own choice, just give up on America and leave – go on strike, as it were? What if they became fed-up with the jealousy and greed of an increasingly lazy electorate/government determined to punish over-achievers who, well, achieve too much? What if they got a better offer and just took off? What then?

Some consider “Atlas Shrugged” just another cautionary tale with a far-fetched premise intended to make a dramatic point about trends in society the author finds disturbing, similar to Orwell’s “1984.” But perhaps Rand’s implausible premise is not so implausible after all.

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March 14, 2011

The GOP assault on America

Contributed by Michael Gass

The GOP has begun their assault on America. On some issues, such as busting unions, it is a coordinated assault. Numerous states under GOP rule are trying to bust unions (see Indiana, Wisconsin, and Ohio). On other issues, the attacks aren’t as coordinated, but, the intent is clear. In Michigan, the attack on America has taken a very dangerous tact – give “emergency power” to the government so that the GOP can accomplish their agenda.

State officials estimate that dozens of local governments and school districts will soon be unable to pay their bills and the Treasury dept. is on record supporting a bill — passed by the House last week — which would recast Emergency Financial Managers as Emergency Managers and give them unprecedented new power to fire elected officials, dissolve labor contracts and reorganize or dissolve cities and school districts.”

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March 3, 2011

Sacrifice More, You Louts!

Contributed by Michael Gass

In The State newspaper, we get a hint at how the state legislature defines “sacrifice” in this article:

The proposal now is in a House subcommittee. If it makes it to the House floor for a vote, Republicans, who control that body, are expected to support it. They have made its passage a priority.

At issue here is the lowering of property taxes. However, far from lowering property taxes for struggling families, the change being debated will really only help one segment of South Carolina – the rich and corporations.

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February 21, 2011

How to save education in SC

Contributed by Michael Gass

Lower taxes. If we don’t regulate business, if we simply stay out of their business, the market will handle itself. That is what the Republican Party has pushed for decades. In South Carolina, the reality is that lower taxes means less revenue to pay for services. Instead of “handling itself”, letting corporations run amok has led to higher unemployment, higher rates for products and services while receiving less, and a system that has almost crashed the nation due to greed. And, it’s no different in South Carolina. South Carolina faces almost a billion dollar shortfall in this year’s budget.

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December 30, 2010

Derivatives explained in beer

Contributed by Shell Suber

Got this email from a friend. Not sure who wrote it or where it got started. Does anyone really know where these things come from?

Somehow, when you make analogies of the economy with drinking beer, it seems to make sense.

Understanding Derivatives – a Primer

Heidi is the proprietor of a bar in Detroit.

She realizes that virtually all of her customers are unemployed alcoholics and, as such, can no longer afford to patronize her bar.

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December 8, 2010

Is Obama on the Carter trajectory?

Contributed by Shell Suber

Opponents looking to challenge first-term presidents are acutely aware defeat is the likely outcome of their efforts. After all, since World War II, America has fired only two presidents after one term. (Ford, who was never elected President or Vice President, does not really count against that statistic.)

That being said, if you study the conditions needed to create that rare political “perfect storm” necessary to unseat a president, you have to conclude that 2012 is shaping up to be – potentially at least – just such a storm. For best results, compare Jimmy Carter’s one-and-done presidency to Barak Obama’s first two years. 

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November 12, 2010

When is a Tax Cut not a Tax Cut?

Contributed by Bob Edens

We have heard current the debate whether to keep the Bush tax cuts or let the Bush tax cuts expire. The problem, and most of us have fallen for this. These are not tax cuts! Let me repeat that… these are not tax cuts. Now let me explain.

By law all Americans depending upon their income are tax at particular tax bracket. That tax bracket has been set by law. The most recent was under President Bush, where the tax rates were lowered for all American. There was no discrimination. The rates were cut for everyone. This is now the law.

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