On the 1,515th Valentine's Day we are looking at a lot less love for working classes...

Obama is getting ready to put in his budget cut proposals and it looks like the folks who are going to be asked to hold their breaths and take the biggest cuts are those of us on the bottom.

This from the Associated Press:

Less than two months after signing tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans into law, President Barack Obama proposed a spending plan to Congress that cuts funding to programs that assist the working poor, help the needy heat their homes, and expand access to graduate-level education, undermining the kind of community-based organizations that helped Obama launch his political career in Chicago.

There's more...

And it begins again... this time in the Senate

 

“Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.”

- Mark Twain

As I settled in this afternoon awaiting a coming ice storm (the first of these just missed us last night) and curious about what's going on in Egypt where around 2 million people were demonstrating today for Hosni Mubarak's resignation (in a speech this afternoon he said he would not run for reelection and would be out of office by the Fall... as you might guess, this does not seem good enough for the demonstrators who want him out now) I wondered what was happening on C-Span 2.

I thought I'd watch the Senate debate the FAA Funding Bill and what do you think happened? Senate Republicans have attempted to repeal last year's sweeping health care law via an amendment to a FAA funding, proposed by the beloved Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) Not since the Earth's creation some 6000+ years ago, when men and dinosaurs peaceably shared the world, have I heard such idiocy.

There's more...

At this point, I think Obama has kissed Democrats goodbye…

As of this morning it seems that Obama is ready to deal with the Right... extend the Bush tax cuts for a couple of years in exchange for one year's extension of Unemployment funding. The tax cut deal is tentative. It hasn't gone through Congress yet (although McConnell is probably dribbling with laughter in his office), but it probably will.

When even Conservatives like Joe Scarborough sees and comments on the fact that Obama is moving directly to the Right... and will not increase job creation much, but will add at least a trillion new bucks to the deficit. And who is going to lend it to us? The Chinese? Are we going to listen to Obama's financial team that extending tax cuts are going to get us out of recession?

There's more...

Welcome to December… let’s watch Congress drag us further into misery.

We are starting December with a very heavy rain… it began around midnight last nite and was still raining five minutes ago when I brought the dogs in from their 10:30 AM walk. I expect it to keep raining most of the day. The low spots on our back lot are flooded already and I imagine groundwater rises are happening all over town. I’ll find out when I go out to the store a little later.

December begins the three or so weeks that Congress has remaining in the Lame Duck Session before all the overpaid and underaccomplishing elected officials head home for the holidays to brag about what they did or didn’t allow to get passed and beg for money. Perhaps they will leave after making at least one or two progressive legal advances get through before the Republicans take over the House and add to their seats in the Senate. Taxing the Wealthy would be one legal wonder. I don’t count on it as Obama seems, as usual, getting ready to cave. To me, the best thing would be for nothing to happen and the taxes go back in place for everyone.

I heard one Republican Congressman say on a TV interview that if the taxes go back to pre-Bush levels, the average tax increase for us poor middle-classers will be around $2,150.00.  This, of course, is not true… the average is thrown way off by the top 1% of the population whose millions-through-billions in income throw off the 99% that averages in the lower thousands. This is being done to scare the middle and lower class voters into supporting the Reps and Senators being paid off by the Murdochs of the world. I expect my taxes to go up a couple of hundred dollars at most… and the amount that would be taken from the wealthy 1% would bring in a huge amount of bucks… perhaps over a trillion dollars.

In reality, if the overall Bush tax cuts for EVERYONE are extended for a couple of years it will put us the same trillion-plus deeper into debt. And if you think that will improve our economy and increase jobs I have a great bridge to sell you.



Sometime after Tuesday we’ll be reevaluating our Government...

Sometime after Tuesday we’ll be reevaluating our Government and a new area of conflict will likely be established…

I am curious as to what the results of the Election 2010 will leave us with. It seems likely now that the Republicans will take control of the House, likely putting John Boehner (R-OH) into the Speaker’s chair. As to the Senate, the majority of pollsters have the Democrats keeping control by at least 1 seat… but there are odds that Harry Reid (D -NV) won’t be in one of them. This makes the Majority Leader position a “what if” situation… and it looks like Charles Schumer (D-NY) might get it.

As to Boehner, it is interesting that he is pushing candidates all over the place… the other day he supported Rich Iott, the Nazi Reenactor, in Ohio’s 9th District. TPM points out:

House Minority Leader John Boehner took on the conventional wisdom that it’s bad politics to associate with Nazi reenactors by campaigning recently with Ohio congressional candidate Rich Iott. That’s about the only public support Iott’s received from the GOP since his SS scandal broke.

Returning the favor, Iott, who’s running in Ohio’s 9th congressional district, now won’t say whether he’d support Boehner for Speaker.

Interesting. Does Iott know something we don’t? Roll Call, which first published Iott’s “iffy” stand on Boehner’s Speakership, doesn’t think it matters:

Boehner isn’t likely to have Iott’s vote either way, since Kaptur (Democratic Rep. Marcy Kaptur) appears to be safe on Tuesday. CQ Politics rates this 9th district race Safe Democratic.

In the now close Senate race in Nevada, the Baltimore Sun doesn’t think it will be over on Tuesday:

In Nevada, where Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid was battling “tea party” insurgent Sharron Angle, each side was bracing for a close finish that could extend the campaign — through lawsuits, a recount or both — well beyond Tuesday.

Looking at the Nevada Senate campaign, we’re seeing some really dirty playing on both sides. Perhaps you didn’t see this piece by Michael Kinsley in Politico a couple of days ago:

The Republicans have chosen to make a major issue out of the fact that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid lives in an apartment in the Ritz-Carlton condominiums in Washington DC. It is a one-bedroom apartment on the second floor. Reid also owns two properties in Nevada, his home state. But presumably his apartment in Washington is where he stays when he’s here. Reid’s opponent, Sharron Angle, and the National Republican Senatorial Committee have built a huge imaginary narrative on this fragile base in which Reid “lives large” in DC, partying with supermodels, while his constituents suffer.

In my Politico column on Tuesday, I raised the question of where Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell, who will become Majority Leader if the Republicans carry the day on November 2, lives when he’s in Washington. It turns out that he owns a three-bedroom house with a carriage house on Capitol Hill. Harry Reid’s apartment is worth $1,066,000 according to the real estate website zillow.com. Mitch McConnell’s house is worth $1,142,000. If Harry Reid is living large, Mitch McConnell is living larger. And the fact that Republicans apparently didn’t’ think about or didn’t bother to check out McConnell’s situation before piling on Reid shows how phony the whole “Harry Reid Lives at the Ritz” business really is.

The poll numbers go back and forth in Nevada each day (Angle has a 4 point lead this morning, but this will probably switch again this afternoon and go back the other way tomorrow. Adam Nagourney in the NY Times said this about Angle:
She has struggled to explain a number of past positions, including calling for the phasing out of Social Security, discussion of “second amendment remedies” to deal with an out of control Congress, and coming out against extension of unemployment benefits. Mr. Reid is highly unpopular in his home state and his strategy has been clear from the start: To present Ms. Angle as an unacceptable alternative even to someone that many voters don’t like. (Keep in mind: Nevada voters have the option of voting for “none of the above,” which can only help Mr. Reid.)

Hmmm. It doesn’t look good for Reid. Then I read Jon Ralston’s piece this morning in the Las Vegas Sun:

Atmospherics are terrible for Reid, but he will hold on

Harry Reid or Sharron Angle is dead, last in an occasional series:

It just feels as if Reid is going to lose.

There's more...

I’d like to take a moment to talk with all my friends around the country who haven’t decided if they will vote this year…

Quite frankly, there is not much of a choice here: if you don’t vote, you will condemn us to changes in our country that will be hard to live with and harder to overcome in the future.

For instance, Republican Senate candidates Linda McMahon in Connecticut, Rand Paul in Kentucky, John Raese in West Virginia, and Dino Rossi in Washington have all pledged to roll back or eliminate the minimum wage.

Sharron Angle in Nevada, Ken Buck in Colorado, and Pat Toomey in Pennsylvania have all talked about privatizing Social Security — or eliminating it altogether.

Twenty of this year’s Republican candidates for the Senate have been asked about climate change, and 19 of them have said that the science is wrong.

There's more...

It's time to get behind Byron Dorgan...

Dorgan (D - North Dakota) is the Senator who introduced legislation, S. 260, to shut down a tax loophole that rewards U.S. companies that move U.S. manufacturing  jobs overseas. The legislation would close the loophole that allows U.S. multinational companies to defer paying income taxes on profits they make from the U.S. sale of the products manufactured in foreign factories, until those profits are returned to the United States, if ever.  Manufacturers who remain in the United States receive no similar subsidy.

While passage of this law has obvious benefits for the U.S., it has been something Dorgan has been trying to get through for ten years.

    "You may not believe it, but when a U.S. company closes down a U.S. manufacturing plant fires its American workers and moves those good-paying jobs to China or other locations abroad, U.S. tax law actually rewards those companies with a large tax break called deferral. The tax code allows these firms to defer paying any U.S. income taxes on the earnings from those new foreign-manufactured products until those profits are returned, if ever, to this country. If a company making the same product decides to stay in this country, it is required to pay immediate U.S. taxes on the profits it earns here."


- Senator Byron Dorgan

Examples of products that used to be manufactured in America but now are being made in China or Mexico or other countries? How .about Nabisco Fig Newtons, which are now made by 50¢ per hour workers in Mexico. Or Huffy Bicycles, formerly made in Ohio, now made in China by 33¢ per hour workers. Or Etch-a-Sketch. Or La-Z-Boy furniture. Or Fruit of the Loom underwear. The list goes on and on.


And we support the outsourcing of products in two ways. When we go to Wal-Mart or K-Mart (companies that demand our products at the lowest prices) and purchase them we give tacit support to the throwing away of American jobs. But that isn't the only way we support major corporations who screw Americans out of their jobs...we give them tax breaks for doing it! These are called "Deferrals" and they are totally legal.

There's more...

The Economy Teeters on the Edge as Politicians Play... So what do the majority of Americans want?

A new poll shows that 53% of Americans support the  ending of tax cuts  for the Wealthy 1% while maintaining them for the  Middle Class.  John Boehner , however, comes out today saying it is not time to increase taxes on anyone (so I assume he's in that 1%... or is dominated by it.) At the same time, the US  poverty  rating has now increased by 43%... more of us are impoverished by this economy and the lack of jobs is seen as the major cause.

S0 let's look at that Wealthy 1%. As the major business investors (in terms of money, if not in the creation of new businesses), these folks have NOT created new jobs... at least not in the US. While China and the far east have gotten more employees (for pennies!) and Mexico has received new factories that used to be in Indiana and Illinois and Ohio, the Wealthy 1% have held onto their dough and have not used it to, as the trickle-downers maintain they would, "save America."

There's more...

Guns and Butter

We are spending $2 Billion a week in Afghanistan. If you want to see zeros, that's $2,000,000,000.00 a week. It also means $104 Billion a year.

Meanwhile, we can't afford to keep our education budgets in functional condition. We can't reduce our National Debt. We can't bring down our operating deficit. And we are spending a fortune on foreign servicing (read China) of our debt.

There's more...

War Fatigue

Obama and Company are gearing up for an explanation tour of our goals in the Middle East... that we are there to keep Al Qaeda out, to stop the Taliban from returning to Afghanistan, and to WIN (whatever that means).

Trying to build a Democratic state in a Medieval mess is just not working out. Keeping the corrupt Karzai government afloat is a form of creeping suicide for our troops, which we have expanded in Afghanistan as we have cut them in Iraq.

There's more...

Diaries

Advertise Blogads