The Washington Post reported on the independent analysis of Governor Romney’s proposed tax plan…
Mitt Romney’s plan to overhaul the tax code would produce cuts for the richest 5 percent of Americans — and bigger bills for everybody else, according to an independent analysis set for release Wednesday.
The study was conducted by researchers at the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, a joint project of the Brookings Institution and the Urban Institute, who seem to bend over backward to be fair to the Republican presidential candidate. To cover the cost of his plan — which would reduce tax rates by 20 percent, repeal the estate tax and eliminate taxes on investment income for middle-class taxpayers — the researchers assume that Romney would go after breaks for the richest taxpayers first.
The awesome Steve Benen at The Maddow Blog put together this lovely chart, as only he can do. It gives us a nice visual of who benefits from Romney’s plan and who pays for the new yachts and summer homes for the rich.
The chart breaks down the tax burdens starting at the bottom 20% of wage earners and ends with the 99 – 99.9 group. He left off the top .1% because it would be “off the charts”, so to speak. You may notice that everyone pays more in taxes right up until you get to the top 5% of the population. According to the analysis, those who make $3 million dollars a year would get a TAX CUT of $250,000.
The President didn’t waste any time in letting people know how he feels about Governor Romney’s plan.
We tried that whole giving massive tax breaks to the rich during the Bush administration, it helped bring us to the brink of a depression. Let’s not go there again, please!
Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles
Our “liberal media” at work!
The Republican Party is picking up where they left off in the last election and helping to define themselves as the party “of and for” corporations – especially big oil.
In 2008, they had “Drill, Baby, Drill” and all the money that came along with that. This election year, they’ve chosen the Keystone XL pipeline to show how they plant their lips on the ass of big oil.
Once again, they have the media on their side in this endeavor. Media Matters for America did a study of media coverage from August 1, 2011 to December 31, 2011 on the Keystone XL pipeline. The results aren’t a surprise to anyone who pays attention to reality. This chart tells the story pretty clearly.
The GOP has been tremendously successful at getting the media to play along with them since August of 2011 on this issue and the above chart shows us the results. The red bars show how “job creation potential” was mentioned in the coverage from major media outlets with the green bar representing the “environmental concerns.” If you’ve been following the topic recently, it is obvious that Republicans are trying to make this into their jobs program, or at least an attempt to show how the Obama administration is preventing job creation. Go read the whole article at Media Matters, it was very thorough.
When you drill down into the numbers (I couldn’t resist), it turns out that reality is much different than the propaganda that has been sold to the American people. In a different post, Media Matters has some interesting information that gets to the real job numbers associated with the pipeline. Here are some snippets that show a progression that begins with Fox News…
Fox Anchor Martha MacCallum: 20,000 Jobs Is “The Low-End Estimate.” [snip]
TransCanada Said In 2010 That Keystone XL Pipeline “Is Expected To Create Over … 13,000 New Jobs For American Workers.” [snip]
Wash. Post: Based On TransCanada’s Numbers, “The Number Of People Employed” Would Actually Be 6,500. A November 5 article in The Washington Post reported that TransCanada CEO Russ Girling “said Friday that the 13,000 figure was actually not a true job number, but actually accounted for ‘one person, one year.’” The Post added that “if the construction jobs lasted two years, the number of people employed in each of the two years would be 6,500.” [snip]
Cornell University Global Labor Institute: Based On TransCanada’s Numbers, “The Project Will Create No More Than 2,500-4,600 Temporary Direct Construction Jobs.” [snip]
Cornell University Global Labor Institute: “Based On The Figures Provided By TransCanada For The Canadian Section Of The Pipeline, The New Permanent US Pipeline Jobs In The US Number As Few As 50.” (emphasis mine)
The estimate by the independent group at Cornell University puts the number of temporary jobs at 2,500 – 4,600 and the number of permanent jobs at 50. Those jobs would certainly matter to the people lucky enough to get them, but it ain’t no 20,000 jobs for sure. And considering all the risks to the states that this pipeline would travel through, not worth it at all.
Republicans are either stupid or crazy, take your pick!
In November of 2011, the Republicans decided to embrace the issue in their negotiations for extending the payroll tax cut that President Obama was fighting for. The pipeline became their bargaining chip in those negotiations, even after being warned by the State Department that trying to force the issue would result in it being killed for sure. That didn’t seem to bother the GOP, from a State Department briefing on December 12, 2011…
The State Department has led a rigorous, thorough, and transparent process that must run its course to obtain the necessary information to make an informed decision on behalf of the national interest. Should Congress impose an arbitrary deadline for the permit decision, its actions would not only compromise the process, it would prohibit the Department from acting consistently with National Environmental Policy Act requirements by not allowing sufficient time for the development of this information. In the absence of properly completing the process, the Department would be unable to make a determination to issue a permit for this project. (emphasis mine)
But like the flat footed, clumsy party that they are, the GOP kept right on pushing it. So during the holidays, we were treated to the White House fighting for tax cuts for every American while the Republicans were blocking those tax cuts and supporting big oil. Coming off the BP oil spill in 2010, I’m not sure that is the group you want to wrap your arms around.
Just over a week ago on January 18, 2012, President Obama officially rejected the Keystone XL pipeline bid.
But the president said today in a statement that the congressionally imposed deadline did not provide adequate time for the State Department to finish a customary review of the pipeline’s route through six states.
“The rushed and arbitrary deadline insisted on by Congressional Republicans prevented a full assessment of the pipeline’s impact, especially the health and safety of the American people, as well as our environment,” Obama said.
“As a result, the secretary of state has recommended that the application be denied. And after reviewing the State Department’s report, I agree.”
What is so astounding to me is that they don’t seem to really want the pipeline to go through, they just want it as a campaign issue. Steve Benen summed it up very well…
I’d argue that this is the outcome Republicans wanted all along. The GOP didn’t really want the pipeline; they wanted the ability to whine about the absence of the pipeline. This wasn’t, in other words, about energy production; this was about creating an issue for the 2012 campaign.
Besides the stupidity of pitting tax cuts for all Americans against the interests of big oil, Republicans also touted those outrageous claims of how many jobs it would create. Going into an election year that everyone says will be all about jobs, you would think they might pick an issue that would actually create some jobs. But instead, they’ve inflated and exaggerated numbers that even the company building the pipeline doesn’t agree with.
I’m seeing a new slogan, “Lay Pipe, Baby, Lay Pipe.” Now get your minds out of the gutter.
Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles
I’m very encouraged by the energy being generated by the “Occupy” movements happening across the country. And even though it is made up of people with many different views on politics, I’m hopeful that it gets people involved and more people register to vote — because elections do matter. If you don’t think they matter, you must have been sleeping through President Bush’s 8 years in office. This movement has the potential to change the corporate hold on Washington and give voice to those who don’t have lobbyists, the 99% of us just trying to survive. Viva La Occupy!
Initially, the Occupy Wall Street movement was ignored by the corporate media. The networks and cable outfits figured that perhaps after a few days, the movement would simply go away. But it didn’t, and in fact, the movement gained more sympathy than scorn from various factions for different reasons.
It’s been almost humorous watching the media insist that OWS needs to “define” itself in order to “achieve” their (unstated) goals. They need to have a list of clear demands, news anchors on the six o’clock news bellowed. But once again, the corporate media misses the obvious mark. For one, “Occupy Wall Street” is a moniker that speaks for itself. No explanation is needed, if one reflects on the current turmoil that our nation is experiencing. In a Twitter-oriented society, it helps, not hinders, to label a movement with a general descriptive tag that is short and inclusive.
It is not a mystery that there is a general consensus that Wall Street’s gains have not alleviated the misery of those on Main Street. “The 99%”, which is a self-conferred name, has also provided a connective link to the general public. What could be so wrong about a movement that calls itself the overwhelming majority? After all, most folks know doggone well that they aren’t part of the 1%. So both the name of the movement as well as that of its participants have allowed a visceral kinship to ordinary Americans without even trying, something the media doesn’t quite yet comprehended. The OWS’s truth in labeling is its connective strength that could be key to its eventual success, however that success materializes.
Also, the recorded acts of police brutality perpetuated upon the young, peaceful protestors certainly helped foster public sympathy early in the movement’s plight. As YouTube provided visual footage of inexplicable police action against peaceful protestors, that pitiful sight allowed a large segment of the public to side with the defenseless. This has always been the case in prior successful movements. Americans who might have otherwise paid no attention realized that the young women being pepper sprayed could be their own daughter or granddaughter who showed up to protest their lack of finding a job after graduating from college. These events had an impact.
This is a must see, vintage smackdown of the “firebaggers.” Lawrence O’Donnell and Ezra Klein educate the foaming at the mouth “progressives” Jane Hamsher, Adam Green and some other firebagger wanna-be named
Mike Roger Hodge. Watch and enjoy!
H/T to grantinhouston!
What does Warren Buffet know anyway? I wish he would take some of his money and buy some advertising time and push that idea. The brainwashed masses and media are still operating under the commands of their “Brainwasher-in-chief” Ronald Reagan, who raised taxes 7 out of 8 years that he was in office. But the brainwashing was so damn good that even now, many Republicans faces go blank when you tell them that. They get a look of cognitive dissonance. “Does not compute”. Take it away, Warren, buddy.
Rich, white, men, that’s who is left. And let me take this opportunity to thank all those people who decided that staying home last November was going to send some message and make things so much better…you know, because sending those “messages” by staying home on your lazy, uncaring, selfish ass will do soooo much to help the people above.
Washington is consumed with budgets, current budgets, future budgets and phantom budgets that only exist in some people’s minds. Paul Ryan announced his budget proposal and you have to give him credit for being so brazen about screwing over seniors, the poor, women, children and students. He didn’t even try to temper it either, he basically comes right out and says it. Steve Benen at The Washington Monthly weighs in on it…(emphasis mine)
Today, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) unveils his plan for fiscal year 2012. He promised a truly radical approach to our entire system of government, and he wasn’t lying — Ryan’s budget is based on his radical “roadmap” and effectively rewrites the American social contract.
Medicare would be eliminated and replaced with a voucher system. Medicaid would be gutted and sent to the states as a block grant. The Affordable Care Act would be scrapped, tax rates on corporations and the wealthy would be slashed, and all told, Ryan’s plan intends to slash roughly $6 trillion from the federal budget over the next 10 years.
You get that? Corporations and the wealthy will have their taxes slashed, big piles of cash going into their pockets and coming out of yours. I can just hear the fat cats on Wall Street sitting back with a big ole’ cigars and a glass of bourbon toasting Paul Ryan, their waterboy. Paul Ryan is like the demon child of supply side economics, he believes it to his core. Facts do not interfere with his ideas, it is all faith, belief and clinging to a policy that we tried twice and are still suffering the consequences from.
Ezra Klein focuses on the proposed cuts in Medicaid. He has a chart that tells the story better than words…
Ryan’s op-ed introducing his budget lists Medicaid under “welfare reform,” reflecting the widespread belief that Medicaid is a program for the poor. That belief is wrong, or at least incomplete. A full two-thirds of Medicaid’s spending goes to seniors and people with disabilities — even though seniors and the disabled are only a quarter of Medicaid’s members. Sharply cutting Medicaid means sharply cutting their benefits, as that’s where the bulk of Medicaid’s money goes. This is not just about the free health care given to some hypothetical class of undeserving and unemployed Medicaid queens.
If you are a senior (or approaching that point) or a person with a disability – REPUBLICANS HATE YOU! If you are a rich, white, male with lots of money and opportunities and sipping bourbon and smoking cigars – REPUBLICANS LOVE YOU! If you are a child, woman or student trying to figure out a way to go to college – REPUBLICANS HATE YOU! If you are a corporation making record profits and bonuses – REPUBLICANS LOVE YOU!
VOTE DEMOCRATIC ACROSS THE BOARD – NEVER VOTE FOR ANOTHER REPUBLICAN AGAIN – THEY DON’T GIVE A SHIT ABOUT ANYONE BUT THE WEALTHY.
Look at the 10 rich, white men in this picture and tell me that they didn’t get together and say, “let’s screw everyone who isn’t like us. What do you say?”
They seem to be very pleased with themselves too. Steve Benen describes the visual very well…
Now, Jed is clearly right about the Q&A; it left a lot to be desired. But I struck by the image itself. What we saw was a House press conference held by 10 people who look remarkably similar to one another: 10 powerful, conservative, white men in dark suits, who make more money in a year than the vast majority of the American people.
And these 10 powerful, conservative, white men in dark suits all want the same thing: to approve a budget that imposes hardship on the elderly, the disabled, low-income families, and the middle class, while rewarding the wealthy and corporations with even more tax breaks.
It is, of course, the wealthy and corporations who’ll help these 10 powerful, conservative, white men in dark suits stay in power, so none of this comes as a surprise.
It seems that both the hard right and the hard left have determined that compromising is horrible, it’s giving in, it’s bowing to the other side, it’s just plain wrong damn it. No one has made it more clear than ole’ Boner himself. This exchange on 60 Minutes with Leslie Stahl shows it better than anything I’ve read. You have to give Boner credit for being totally honest that it’s the word, people, not the actions. Courtesy of Steve Benen…
Most notably, Lesley Stahl brought up the notion of a conservative Republican Speaker cooperating with a Democratic president. It led to this back and forth:
Boehner: We have to govern. That’s what we were elected to do.
Stahl: But governing means compromising.
Boehner: It means working together.
Stahl: It also means compromising.
Boehner: It means finding common ground.
Stahl: Okay, is that compromising?
Boehner: I made it clear I am not gonna compromise on my principles, nor am I gonna compromise…
Stahl: What are you saying?
Boehner: …the will of the American people.
Stahl: You’re saying, “I want common ground, but I’m not gonna compromise.” I don’t understand that. I really don’t.
Boehner: When you say the word “compromise,” a lot of Americans look up and go, “Uh-oh, they’re gonna sell me out.” And so finding common ground, I think, makes more sense.
When Stahl noted the tax deal, and the fact that Boehner had to make concessions when dealing with the White House, she said Boehner did, in fact, “compromise.” Boehner replied, “We found common ground.”
Stahl responded that Boehner seemed “afraid of the word.” The incoming Speaker replied, “I reject the word.”
Like I said, you have to give him credit for coming right out and saying it. Common ground good, compromise bad. Got it! It’s not just the crazy right wingers that feel this way, but those crazy left wingers too, except I don’t think these assholes are left wingers, they are populist, teabagger wanna be’s. A rare link to Firedoglake here, I hate giving them fuckers any traffic but this is a perfect example of what they’ve become over at that piece of shit blog. Character assassination and guilt by association on steroids. Who said Fox News was the only outlet for this crap. The firebagger brigade went over the cliff long ago.
The Huffington Post wasted no time in spinning the deal as a cave-in, portraying it as the GOP calling all the shots on the deal. Here is a piece from just one of the posts they have up slanting things as only they can do…(no link to that piece of shit blog)
Republicans control neither the House nor the Senate – and certainly not the White House. But they largely dictated the terms of President Barack Obama’s proposed tax-cut compromise, which disgruntled congressional Democrats want to discuss in closed meetings that are likely to be rowdy.
But of course, when many people who aren’t so angry and still have the capacity for rational thought looked at it, they came up with the reality of the deal which is that it was clearly a compromise that many argue favored the left more than the right. This graph shoes it pretty well…
Now I know many on the left have a rabid hatred for rich people so much that they are willing to say “fuck you” to the unemployed, to the working poor and to all those people who might actually get one of those jobs that will come out of this deal. They apparently would rather see a blood letting of rich people than help for people who really need it. That is why I can’t call these people progressives or liberals, they are opportunistic, populist fucks in my opinion.
Now I hate the idea of giving in at all to the Republicans, but I also live in reality, where the GOP now writes the bills, appropriates money and has forced a new reality where “compromise” is about the best we can do on the left, if and until we gain back the House of Representatives. And of course with the assholes like Hamsher and the gang, I’m sure that isn’t going to happen anytime soon. They seem intent on destroying the Democratic Party from within and that is why I think we need to purge them motherfuckers now. THEY ARE NOT THE BASE THEY KEEP CLAIMING TO BE!
Here is a transcript of a speech by Alan Grayson on the floor of the House of Rep’s. Even though Alan crossed the line a few times in his two years in the house, he was a breath of fresh air in the current political spectrum. I don’t think we’ve heard the last of him, though. Enjoy his opinion on tax cuts, H/T to Crooks and Liars…
Madam Speaker, we’ve heard endless braying from the Republicans, time after time, demanding an extension of tax cuts for the rich in this country. They tell us that somehow extending tax cuts for the rich will somehow create jobs. When we’ve had tax cuts for the rich for nine years and I haven’t noticed a lot of jobs being created in nine years.
They tell us it will boost the economy well I haven’t noticed that happening for nine years either. So you have to wonder why they persist in this mania, this obsession of theirs that we need to have tax cuts for the rich when the economy is flat on its back and unemployment is almost 10%. I think I have the answer. The answer turns out to be very simple.
They want tax cuts for the rich because they want a tax cut for themselves. What do I mean by that? Let’s take a look at the people who are really in charge, the ones who actually run the Republican party.
Let’s start with this gentleman here, the man with the cigar, Rush Limbaugh. Doesn’t he look happy? According according to Newsweek, he makes $58.7 million a year, and extending the tax cuts means he’ll have another $2.7 million. Mega dittos, Rush, and mega money. Let’s look at the next one.
Here’s Glenn Beck, according to Newsweek Glenn Beck makes $33 million a year as a pundit and extending the Bush Tax Cuts means a cool $1.5 million for Glenn bBeck’s ongoing imitation of Howard Beale from Network. Now let’s look at the next one.
Sean Hannity. Newsweek says that Sean Hannity, this man of the people makes $22 million a year from his act on Fox. And that means the Bush Tax cuts mean an extra $1 million. $1 million for Sean Hannity. Maybe he can afford some anger management classes. Let’s take a look at the next one.
Bill O’Reilly. He makes a modest $20 million a year from his gig on Fox. That means that the Bush tax cuts give him not quite seven figures, nearly $914,000 of extra cash. It’s easy to see why Bill O’Reilly wants to see the Bush tax cuts extended. And I have to say, he’s no pinhead when it comes to that.
And Now, Sarah Palin. Sarah Palin has made $14 million this year from cashing in on her fame. In fact, she’s done a better job of turning fame into cash than anyone in American history. $14 million. So she wants the Bush tax cuts extended so she can make an extra cool $638,000. As she was — as she would gesture (shoulder shrug.)
And now on to Newt Gingrich, the man who did such a great job of running America in the 1990’s, he wants a second chance in this decade. Newt if you do to us now what you did to us then, we’ll be in trouble. But Newt Gingrich makes $5 million a year from his punditry, he’ll get an extra quarter million dollars a year. An extra quarter million dollars a year from the Bush tax cuts being extended.
Now let’s go on to the big cheese. George W. Bush himself. The man who got us into two endless war. The man who brought us to the brink of national bankruptcy. The man who gave us $4 a gallon gasoline. George W. Bush makes a cull $4.2 million a year, according to Newsweek. That means that extending the bush tax cuts for George Bush means an extra $187,000 in his pockets every single year.
I have a better idea. Instead of placating these people and letting them spew out onto the airwaves their lies about the Bush tax cut ever revealing the fact that they stand to gain millions, millions of dollars each year from their selfish desire to take advantage of the rest of America, let’s do this. Let’s take that money and create jobs.
All that money that the Bush tax cuts are charging us that can create jobs for three million Americans a year. $30,000 job a fair wage for fair work, a dignified wage for dignified work and a way to — a dignified wage for dignified work and a way to help our economy, a better idea than putting money in the pockets of the rich. The problem is not that the poor have too much money, that’s not the problem at all, it’s that they need jobs. Thank you.