Die Hard Liberals: Not Offended By Kerry Lifestyle?

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Discus: College Confidential Café: 2004 Archive: Die Hard Liberals: Not Offended By Kerry Lifestyle?
By Mom101 (Mom101) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 06:06 am: Edit

I was at a party last night where people were breathing a sigh of relief that the Kerrys had departed Nantucket. I was reminded that Theresa was a die hard Republican until recently. And about their extremely lavish lifestyle. 5 mansions in the priciest places on earth, servants galore, private planes and fleets of cars. This is of course Kerrys second wealthy wife. So I wonder why you redistribution of wealth liberals aren't offended by this gross excess?

By Onnihs (Onnihs) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 06:34 am: Edit

i guess i am a liberal, but i certainly don't believen the redistribution of wealth.

so die-heard liberals have adopted socialist economics?

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 06:39 am: Edit

Where have you been? Just read some of these threads.

By Thinkingoutloud (Thinkingoutloud) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 10:13 am: Edit

The sterotype liberals offer of republicans is that republicans are rich greedy "I got mine, the heck with you" type people who got their wealth by luck rather than work. Unfortunately for them, that sterotype applies to Sen. Kerry. The reality is that most republicans are hard working people who see the unfairness of having their income redistributed to those who do not work as hard. When I saw the picture of Sen. Kerry wind surfing, I thought (1) that looks like fun and (2) Sen. Kerry is an elite New Englander.

By Simba (Simba) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 10:20 am: Edit

what is your research topic?

By Matth (Matth) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 10:35 am: Edit

What difference does it make if he's wealthy? I'm a democrat, not a communist. What are you implying when you comment on the wealth of his wife? So she's wealthy, big deal. I notice that you didn't comment on the amazing amount of good that her money does through the Heinz Foundation. It seems to me that you are one of the individuals on these boards who is constantly harping on people being successful in life, etc. etc. So what's the problem you obviously have with John Kerry and Theresa Heinz? Sounds like you're a little jealous to me.

By Hhboyji (Hhboyji) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 10:50 am: Edit

People shouldn't be offended by Kerry's or Bush's life style. Forget the money, focus on what's important.
I agree with Matth. He's got money, his wife's got money. So what? I don't even care about Bush's life style either. The only reason I'm going to vote for Kerry is that
I believe Kerry will make better president than Bush. That's all.

By Lefthandofdog (Lefthandofdog) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 10:56 am: Edit

What's your research topic?

By Girlforever101 (Girlforever101) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 11:04 am: Edit

I totally agree with Matth, and Hhboyji.

By Pkpat2000 (Pkpat2000) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 11:04 am: Edit

I'm not a redistribution of wealth liberal. I believe that Kerry should be president because Bush did a bad job handling Iraq. Just because I support Kerry with extreme fervor doesn't make me a Communist or unloyal to my country.

By Megofou (Megofou) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 11:28 am: Edit

"The reality is that most republicans are hard working people who see the unfairness of having their income redistributed to those who do not work as hard."

Nickle and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich deals with this in an interesting way. Just because someone is poor as dirt does NOT mean they don't work as hard or harder than someone who has 6 BMWs, 3 mansions, and a whole slew of servants. Wealth isn't all about how hard you work.

By Simba (Simba) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 11:33 am: Edit

Lefthandofdog: On other thread Mom101 wrote I'll be here for a few more months for a research project Tubby, I'll keep you posted.

so I was just curious.

By Vancat (Vancat) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 11:38 am: Edit

she's probably analyzing the tin-foil-hat-effect of this board's liberals.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 11:47 am: Edit

I', mot offended at all by their lifestyle. I psoed the question because of the clear perception that exists son this board that it would be a Republican lifestyle. I do think it's a little more than a coincidence though that Kerry, who has no money of his own, married two very wealthy women. You know he's every man, I'm just surprised that just once he didn't fall for a welfare mother.

Simba. I am researching several aspects of elite colleges and admissions at them.

Megofou, by working hard to attain wealth I don't mean sloging away at a job. I mean working hard all of your life, first to get into a great college. Working hard there to get into a great grad school. Then really differentiating yourself there to get a great job. Then working harder and longer hours than everyone else there and so on. And yes, I know, everyone doesn't have the same access to this path but I've seen it done time and again by poor immegrants from inner cities.

I have all of my life been surrounded by people not willing to work as hard as I do and those that are. There is a clear correlation (among those that wanted to attain wealth) between those who did create wealth and how hard they worked in my experience.

By Iplayoboe (Iplayoboe) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 11:51 am: Edit

"redistribution of wealth liberals"
wtf is that.
redistribution of wealth implies Socialism, and it is quite clear that most of the liberals here are NOT socalists, they are Democrats or Libertarians. Please dont insult us in that manner, everybody who isnt a republican is NOT a Socialist.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 12:21 pm: Edit

Oplayoboe, you havn't read many threads if you have not seen clear socialist ideology many times over. I hardly think all Democrats are socialists. In fact, before finding this board, I really didn't have a clue how far left much of the country has moved. Though It's been really well covered in the media lately that the Democrats have largely lost their center and right.

By Pkpat2000 (Pkpat2000) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 12:27 pm: Edit

Mom101, democrats are socialists as much as conservatives are fascists. Some people are more extreme in their beliefs, but the reality is that someone who is too liberal or too conservative will definately be a bad leader.

By Jlq3d3 (Jlq3d3) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 01:05 pm: Edit

extreme conservatism is in no way fascism. Fascism is strong authoritarian central gov, which is how the liberals want the economy run. Some private ownership, with a lot of govt directive on where the income goes, what the wages and vacation time have to be, and who you hire.

By Bitz (Bitz) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 03:21 pm: Edit

Mom101: I think you need to consider the fact that the audience of this board is a group of kids in the 16-18 age range. In general, they tend to be smart, but still immature when it comes to political views. I'd have to include myself in that group (although as a registered Independent I seem to be able to deal more with the issues than the names on the ballot). As for the older politically active patrons of this site, I get the distinct feeling that they come here to stir up trouble. The parents and college alumni who have good intentions on this site are generally the ones handing out unbiased college info, not biased political info. When you combine the two groups, you just aren't going to find a lot of intelligent political commentary on this site.

I realize that a significant number of the "Democrats" on this site seem to be prefessing a belief in Socialism, but the "Republicans" seem to take similarly false views such as the view that patriotism is the property of the Republican party. Both of these views protray the sense that few CCers have any sense of America's complex political landscape.

None of the issues (the real issues) of this election are simple. Anyone who claims that they are is simply ignorant of politics writ large. I could give you a list of reasons why Bush has not made a great president and a similar list as to why Kerry would similarly fail to make a great president. In the end, I'll be voting for Kerry (not for the strict party-line reasons often brought up on this board) and hoping the he is replaced in four years by a socially liberal and fiscally conservative successor (again, not for reasons often brought up on this board).

One last note - This election was doomed from the outset to be a mudslinging war by the simple fact that our political system almost mandates running two candidates who are as opposite from each other as possible. As Bush is right of the mainstream Republicans, the Democrats were essentially forced into a man who is left of the mainstream Democrats. The fact of the matter is that what this country needs now is a moderate president who can actually serve to unite a polarized nation. Neither of the current candidates offers this and whoever eventually prevails, we're in for a bumpy four years.

By Lefthandofdog (Lefthandofdog) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 04:06 pm: Edit

Simba - I asked the same question because I was curious, too, and was hoping you wouldn't be ignored. In fact, the question opening this thread seemed so inflammatory that I thought maybe she was researching bullbaiting. I guess it's just a hobby.

By Matth (Matth) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 04:13 pm: Edit

Mom101, I'd hardly say that Kerry has 'no money of his own'. He grew up in a family that had several very wealthy relatives on his mother's side, part of the Forbes family. His father went to Yale and Harvard, worked for the State Department, and Kerry attended private boarding schools from an early age. Educated at Yale and then going on to law school, he certainly has never been a pauper. You make out like he went searching for rich wives when in fact, his first wife was the sister of one of his closest friends, and many years after his divorce, and John Heinz's death, he and Theresa met. Why be so mean-spirited about them falling in love? Is it so impossible? How many successful, rich, U.S. senators who are lawyers do you think have the opportunity to meet welfare mothers? You're being more immature than most of the kids here.

By Onnihs (Onnihs) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 04:45 pm: Edit

redistribution of wealth is not the american way.

it's not the Democrat's view on economic policy at all. the redistribution of wealth actually contradicts most of what the D party stands for.

i think the term "liberal" has encompassed all radical views that aren't republican, which is just totally and utterly wrong.

By Justwannahelp (Justwannahelp) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 04:57 pm: Edit

What would you have them do with their wealth? Being wealthy is not offensive, and I've never met a liberal, or any person, who has faulted anyone for being rich.

What IS offensive is a person getting rich through illegal and immoral means. Selling ketchup is not immoral.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 04:58 pm: Edit

Matth, Kerry's education was paid for by an aunt. His was the branch of a blue blood family with no cash. How wonderful that he. by happanstance, married into a lot of cash twice!

Bitz, congratulations for showing a maturity rare among your peers. When I read a lot of the 18 year old simple minded drivel I feel sorry for the adcoms who will be reading their essays. I hope you have good stats because your essay will stand out!

By Kluge (Kluge) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 09:32 pm: Edit

Mom101 and "thinkingoutloud" are just parroting the propaganda of the right - Limbaugh and Sowell are particularly egregious practitioners of this black art. What they do is ascribe extreme opinions to those who disagree with them, and then attack that false stereotype. It's a form of "straw man" argument, and a staple of the right wing propaganda program.

There's a reason why Republicans and Fox viewers are 50% more likely to believe things which are objectively false. Constant exposure to this type of "logic" damages the brain.

By Thinkingoutloud (Thinkingoutloud) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 10:22 pm: Edit

And you Kluge are engaging in typical liberal fashion. You can't defeat the arguments of conservates because your arguments are founded in subjective things such as emotion and personal preference, so you just make personal attacks on those with whom you disagree. Liberals have owned the "Old Media" such as the major networks, major newspapers and NPR and PRS, but can't stand it if a small news network does not buy into the liberal agenda. Your right, Fox News should not have dumb contributors such as Juan Williams, Mara Liason, Ceci Connelly, Alan Colmes, Geraldo, Gretta just to name a few. They are definately right wing extremists.

By Matth (Matth) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 10:28 pm: Edit

Mom101, very good avoidance of most of the points in my post. Oy vey.

By Megofou (Megofou) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 01:23 am: Edit

"I mean working hard all of your life, first to get into a great college. Working hard there to get into a great grad school. Then really differentiating yourself there to get a great job. Then working harder and longer hours than everyone else there and so on. And yes, I know, everyone doesn't have the same access to this path but I've seen it done time and again by poor immegrants from inner cities."

That's great for them and anyone else who can do such a thing. I know it's possible to go from nothing to something, but some people never have the chance. In the town I came from, there were several smart people I knew who got into good colleges and didn't have the money (even with loans) to go. One of my closest friends will have to attend a community college and work full time to pay for it. If she has enough energy to get awesome grades, she still won't have the money to pay for a decent grad school.

So yes, it's wonderful for those people who try like mad and make it. It's not so wonderful for those who give it their all and still don't quite reach.

My opinion on the whole money situation is a little different than most. I just can't understand how some people can afford to throw money around like it's nothing while others starve. Am I wealthy now? Um...no. Going in debt by being in school actually. Will I have money some day? After the education I'm about to get...I would hope so. I may change and become the type of person I loathe now...but if not (and I hope I don't), I'm never going to live a 'rich' lifestyle.

I don't think rich people should be MADE to give up their money. I think they should take a long hard look at people, forget the way things are usually done, and do something to help. That's what would happen in a perfect world. This isn't a perfect world. The attitude is...I did this that and the other and I made my own money. Screw you and your starving kids.

Something needs to be done about it. If people won't do it themselves...I hope the government does it for them.

Buuuut, I'm off topic now. As for the Kerry thing...Bush and Kerry both live so comfortably, it's not even an issue. The fact that they (Kerry and family) use their wealth the way they do makes me sad. Yeah. Same as any overly rich person. Still voting for him for several issues involving the actual office for which he's running.

By Scubasteve (Scubasteve) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 02:16 am: Edit


you reak sensless slander upon these boards.. rarely do you ever make a point worth consideration.

Listen to youself, you are more trivial than most of us kids.

Does it matter if Kerry is rich? What does that have to do with him being a democrat? Would you prefer the dem candidate to live in the ghetto?

I mean comon now..

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 10:35 am: Edit

Slander? What's your verbal SAT score?

Megofou, something is wrong with your picture of your friends who don't have access to good educations. A hard working, achieving student in this country has tremendous access to education. Especially if they are poor. There are some middle class kids who have to choose a State school because their parents aren't comfortable with their EFC or haven't saved the requisit amount of money.

In my experience, people who "try like mad" usually reach a level they are satisfied with. The trouble is that many, many people believe that showing up on a job, working 8 hours and doing only what's required is trying like mad. The work ethic in this country today is pretty pathetic. So many on these boards are quick to say that they would never work CEO hours and 3 jobs like many immigrants would. And they're not kidding. There is a sense of entitlement that is hard to fathom IMO.

I see tons of middle class kids in my area who have had every advantage and blow it. They realize in senior year that there is a difference between colleges. All of those nerds who actually worked hard in high school while they were partying are unfairly taking the spots at all of the good colleges. One young man I know, a total slacker, keeps telling people he is so much smarter than his classmates who got into HYPS. And he expects to live the upper middle class lifestyle to which he's grown accustomed after recieving his degree, with a low GPA, from a mediocre college. Next he will complain that it's unfair he doesn't have access to good jobs because they all go to people who have connections like the nerds who got into HYPS.

As an employer it always flabbergasted me how much the average employee expected for a marginal performance and 40 hour work week. And the guy willing to work twice as hard and bend over backwards is disliked as the bosses pet. Or teacher's pet.

The perception that rich people take their money and dance a jig in the manse is jaded. Take a look around you. Note the names on the buildings of the colleges you go to. The names on the scholarship funds. Meet your classmates from disadvantaged backgrounds who went to Choate and other great schools on an Ichan and other scholarships. Think Rockefeller and yes, Heinz. Are there selfish rich people? Of course, there are selfish jerks at all income levels.

I thank my parents for raising me with an immigrant mentality--work your butt off and your dreams will come true. I was raised in a blue collar home and my husband was raised the son of a large company CEO. Yet we both came out with the same values--getting what we wanted would require a lot of work and that work had to start early in life. But at 18 the difference in our advantages (me no money, crummy public school, him money, best privates) were already minimal as we headed to ivy schools. By graduation they were even more minimal as we both did very well and had access to the same jobs.

My kids will get the same bump for being a legacy as URMs get for enduring lesser schools and less access, athletes get for working so hard and accomplishing and the poor and first generation kids get. But they will certainly not become successful or wealthy if they don't work hard. They will watch kids from all backgrounds pass them right by.

The wealthy around you who didn't inherit it have mostly worked harder than their peers to achieve what they did.

No playing field is completely level, but we are doing a pretty good job in this country making higher education available to all. Look to other countries to see that this is not the case most places.

By Megofou (Megofou) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 03:31 pm: Edit

"A hard working, achieving student in this country has tremendous access to education. Especially if they are poor. There are some middle class kids who have to choose a State school because their parents aren't comfortable with their EFC or haven't saved the requisit amount of money."

The friend who has to work full time doesn't come from a poor family. SHE is poor. Her parents don't want to help pay for school and won't cosign for large loans. She can't get government help because her parents made too much money. It happens.

"The trouble is that many, many people believe that showing up on a job, working 8 hours and doing only what's required is trying like mad."

Lucky for me, I'm not one of those people. I know what trying hard and working hard is. Did that pay for Yale? No. I'm working two jobs, possibly a third, as a full time student at OU. Will I be able to afford Yale for graduate school? Very doubtful, but I'll sure as hell try.

"The work ethic in this country today is pretty pathetic."

Agreed. Many of the girls I've met so far are here on their parents money. They have no desire to work during school and summers? Well...those are for trips to Italy. One of my favorite quotes so far from the girl next door: "You can't like...waste your whole youthful pretty years working." But hey...her daddy sends her whatever she asks.

"One young man I know, a total slacker, keeps telling people he is so much smarter than his classmates who got into HYPS."

This has nothing to do with the argument at hand, but ivy league doesn't mean a person is smarter than everyone at mediocre colleges.

As for the rich people whose names appear on buildings and in scholarships...that's great. Really. It does help certain people and it's enough for certain people. Scholarships are delightful, and while they are a great help to paying for college...they can't beat helping a person actually have a shot at paying for college themselves.

"No playing field is completely level, but we are doing a pretty good job in this country making higher education available to all."

That's debatable. Compared to some places...yes. But it could be and with the right movements in government, will be better.

Anyway...this is taking a turn I didn't intend. It'd be hard to explain my view on wealth without a serious non-internet disscussion. Or an essay. But at this point, I have school to worry about. Maybe someday I'll explain myself better.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 03:52 pm: Edit

It seems like the anger you feel for you and some friends is based on what I mentioned above, middle class and upper middle class students whose parents don't want to pay what they are deemed able to pay. There's a lot of that on this board. I honestly don't know what the true problem is. Are EFCs unreasonable or are these selfish parents not making education a priority?

By Megofou (Megofou) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 07:25 pm: Edit

My parents aren't ABLE to pay what they are deemed capable of paying. My dad just got married...now has two step-daughters to take care of and a wife that recently got injured and can't work. Mom? Works hard. Still can't afford to pay for two children attending college.

Middle class and upper middle class students get screwed in many cases. Their parents are supposed to be able to pay...and a lot of times can't. Even if my father hadn't gotten married, he couldn't afford Yale.

Some parents are selfish. I know the friend I'm talking about has disgustingly selfish parents. But yes...the EFCs are unreasonable in my opinion. Without my acedemic scholarships, I could hardly even afford to come here. And I am NOT going to a community college. I could learn more at a highschool.


I guess some people have the luck and some don't. The best I can do is try to make it better for my kids.

By Alongfortheride (Alongfortheride) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 08:04 pm: Edit

Megofour, you're going to be O.K. You know why? Because you care enough to work this out for yourself. I wish you didn't have to work so much outside stuff to fund your education. However, I had friends in college that did, and my husband did, and they are truly among the most outstanding people I know. If you keep on trying your best, you'll make it. So, I want to wish you the best of luck. Frankly, some of the points on this thread are not worth losing sleep over, so go have some fun on this holiday weekend, even if it's just an uninterupted frapuccino at the campus coffee house.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 08:12 pm: Edit

Megofou, did you literally turn down Yale because of money? If yes can I interview you for research I'm doing?

By Megofou (Megofou) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 09:15 pm: Edit

Mom - No. I didn't APPLY to Yale because of money. I decided to make it my goal for law school. With any luck, I'll have enough credit by then to take out a serious loan. I just turned 18 last month, so I'm working on it. *will not be much help to the research*

Along- Thanks. And now...I shall go do karaoke or something like a normal strange person. :-) Work doesn't start until next weekend anyway.

By Kluge (Kluge) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 10:59 pm: Edit

"The perception that rich people take their money and dance a jig in the manse is jaded."
"the perception"... "is jaded"?? Gee, Mom101, what was your SAT verbal? And just what the heck were you trying to say, anyway?

The egocentric whinyness of the financially successful who fail to recognize all the help they had along the way, and who excoriate everyone who doesn't have as much money as slackers, is more sad than amusing. The ability to ignore everything that is done for you, while blithely taking credit for every good thing that has happened in your life, must be a comforting illusion.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 11:37 pm: Edit

Gosh Kluge, finally I agree with you on something. There are so many people who ignore what is done for them and could be done for them if they were willing to take advantage of the opportunities available in today's meritocratic world. Even 25 years ago a poor girl like myself, no money or connections, had access to the ivy league (my verbal SAT was 760 to answer your question). Yes, wonderful people did things for me that I very much apprexciated. And I did a whole lot for myself. Everyone who is not successful is certainly not a slacker, but I have run into many, many slackers as an employee, an employer and in life in general. Most people are not willing to work as hard as those I know who are really successful.

People love to point to the book Nickel and Dimed. The Walmart type jobs and the people who work in them. Mostly those not college educated. We have a higher high school drop out rate in this Country today than we did 20 years ago. Why? Is it because of lack of opportunities? Certainly life circumstances make getting an education hard for some, but most? Look at posters like Shyboy who grew up in a ghetto, had children as a teenager and proceeded to go to UCLA and grad school at USC. Hard work and committment finds opportunities in this Country.

I am disgusted and frightened by the number of middle class and upper middle class kids I see with no work ethic. No idea what they will have to do to do well in life and no desire to take advantage of the opportunities readily available to them.

No one is an island Kluge, but we've worked like dogs in my household to achieve the things we wanted to. And I do take a lot of the credit for getting want I wanted out of life. I remind my kids often that their lives will be what their efforts make them.

By Megofou (Megofou) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 01:11 am: Edit

Side note. I pointed to Nickle and Dimed because it was required reading for the incoming freshman class. We had a floor discussion on it. It was on my mind.

*shifty eyes*

Not that that matters. But it was interesting to have...blah blah blah.


By Valpal (Valpal) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 02:43 am: Edit

One definition of "redistribution of wealth" is the concept of taxing the wealthy at a much higher percentage on the supposition that "they can afford it", and giving that money in the form of "tax breaks" to people who don't even pay a cent in federal income tax. The Democrats call that, "tax breaks for the poor". But tax breaks should by definition be given to tax payers. Otherwise, it's just another government handout, and in reality, a true instance of wealth redistribution.

By Marite (Marite) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 09:47 am: Edit

Income Redistribution, GOP-Style
The House takes money from the poor and spends it on the rich.
By Timothy Noah
Posted Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2002, at 2:48 PM PT

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 10:03 am: Edit

Interesting article Marite. Reading it I kept wondering where it was going. Was the gov't. paying for pool cleaning and luxury car washing and I had somehow missed it? But thn I got to it--business and induatrial loans, farm subsidies and mortgage insurance. All things to stimulate the economy. To help people who otherwise couldn't buy homes. Ah yes, handing money to the rich again. And yes, not to confuse the issue, but tax cuts for the wealthy are also a well known economic stimulus. Even an ultra right columnist in my favorite liberal rag admitted that under duress yesterday.

By Hayden (Hayden) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 10:14 am: Edit

Fascinating article. It's particularly interesting to note the numbers associated with people who earn more than 1.5mm, as opposed to the 200K number most people use. Thanks.

By Simba (Simba) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 10:24 am: Edit

The most affluent Americans actually collect slightly more from the welfare state than do the poorest Americans. [In 1991,] U.S. households with incomes over $100,000 received, on average, $5,690 worth of federal cash and in-kind benefits, while the corresponding figure for U.S. households with incomes under $10,000 was $5,560.

Neil Howe and Phillip Longman in a 1992 article for the Atlantic Monthly (their source was the Congressional Budget Office):

I made that assertion few days ago, and was challenged.

By Valpal (Valpal) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:55 am: Edit

Hummm...interesting Simba. Care to elaborate on that statistic? If you would, please define "welfare state" and what kinds of corresponding "benefits" were handed to the affluent? Food stamps? Aid to Mother's with Dependent Children? Medicaid? Monthly checks in the mail?

By Simba (Simba) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 12:27 pm: Edit

Just go to Marite's link or do your own research to prove that the above statement is wrong. I have stopped argueing with cynics anyway

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 12:47 pm: Edit

Simba, I think Valpal wants to know what the ridiculous definition that article uses, no doubt similar to the one which calls farm subsidies and helping people buy homes handouts to the Republicans. I thought all of you bleeding hearts wanted to save farmers from that awful foreign competition and that all Americans deserve homes.

By Simba (Simba) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 01:06 pm: Edit

Mom101: I am not going there.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 01:45 pm: Edit

Mom101, why are tax cuts and government subsidies for the wealthy economically stimulant, but tax cuts and government subsidies for the middle and lower classes aren't?

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 02:05 pm: Edit

Just look at the numbers, it is the wealthy that create jobs.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 02:07 pm: Edit

But Dstark, I believe in income tax cuts for all.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 02:12 pm: Edit

I spend my life looking at the numbers.
Which economic policy would you enact under this scenario?
Businesses are able to supply 100 televisions...
there is demand for 10 televisions...
Would you provide subsidies to the businesses so they can supply more televisions or...
supply subsidies to the consumers so they can afford more televisions; thereby, increasing demand?

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 02:16 pm: Edit

There is no doubt that tax cuts to the poor and middle class immediately result in more consumer spending. Especially on things like electronics. Most of which are not produced in this Country. The Walmarts and Costcos do benefit, though. But what we need is to spur the growth of solid middle class jobs with bemnefits. Those are what are created by letting those in the top tax brackets retain more cash. Keep in mind that many in the top tax brackets are small businesses filing through individuals.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 02:20 pm: Edit

I've got stats on this at home that I will post next week. I believe it was the San Jose Mercury News that talked about this extensively last week.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 02:22 pm: Edit

Mom101, did you see the story this week?
The number of people looking for work is going to increase 4% for twenty years once the baby bommers start retiring compared to a 50% increase in people looking for work in our generation.
Things might not be so dire in the job front in the future.

By Alongfortheride (Alongfortheride) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 03:30 pm: Edit

>>>I am disgusted and frightened by the number of middle class and upper middle class kids I see with no work ethic. No idea what they will have to do to do well in life and no desire to take advantage of the opportunities readily available to them.>>>

>>>No one is an island Kluge, but we've worked like dogs in my household to achieve the things we wanted to. And I do take a lot of the credit for getting want I wanted out of life. I remind my kids often that their lives will be what their efforts make them.>>>

And if their lives don't meet your expectations, will you condemn them with a sweeping pronouncement like the one above? What if they choose occupations that don't pay six figure salaries? What if one says I want to be a social worker or a teacher? How then will you measure their success?

>>>Just look at the numbers, it is the wealthy that create jobs.>>>

Yes, and they're all overseas. Hence you unceasing defense of outsourcing.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 04:14 pm: Edit

I do have high expectations for my children Alongfortheride. In particular I fully expect them to take advantage of the opportunities available to them. Luckily, they are hard workers. I have 2 very different children, one an achiever in a conventional, academic way. The other, who is the harder worker of the two, who has tremendous learning disabilities and has worked harder than I've ever had to to achieve what he has. So my expectation is that each of my children take the gifts they have, combine them with doing their very best and accomplishing things that will make them fulfilled as adults.

I am not condemning anyone. I'm just saying that as a person having been involved with the world as a student, an employee, an employer and a volunteer in many schools, I've seen an unbelievable number of slackers. Haven't you?

There are many ways to define the success of teachers, social workers and those in every profession. Your assumption that money is the definition is of course not true. My mother was a very successful teacher, best judged by her former students who came to a memorial for her last week to tell how she had changed their lives. I sat there thinking, how can I ever live up to this?

I don't defend outsourcing as much as I point out that it is a fact of life in this Country today. I do, however, think it does make sense. The problem is that we're not creating jobs to take the place of those leaving. And we need to encourage private industry to do this with things like tax incentives.

By Hayden (Hayden) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 10:02 pm: Edit

I've always found it so interesting to hear people say that it's the wealthy who create jobs. Actually, it's the corporations that create the jobs. Unless you're a gardener or a housekeeper, most people are employed by companies, not by individuals. It is the companies, large and small, that determine the salaries and perks of the employees. It is supply of and demand for their product/service, together with how well they manage their expenses, expansion, etc. that results in the success or failure of the company. Obviously this is simplified, since it's not a textbook. But I think we need to avoid the even greater simplification that says that rich people make jobs. They don't. If every member of every senior management cut their pay packages in half tomorrow (which I am not advocating, just using as an example), the jobs created by their successful companies would not change one iota.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 10:25 pm: Edit

Hayden, where to start? I was stating fact, not my opinion. For starters, who do you think owns the huge number of companies of all sizes that are not publically traded?

By Thermodude (Thermodude) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 10:33 pm: Edit

Mom101, I agree with Hayden completely. Its NOT all of the wealthy who create jobs. Historically for the US, it has always been enterprising individuals such as Bill Gates, Robert Noyce, Steve Jobs, Rockefllar, John Jacob Astor...to name a few. Now, some of these men, such as Astor and Rockefellar, started out penniless and worked their way up, while others, such as Bill Gates were financially more secure.

Additionally, I want to point out that historically, the government has played large roles in the economy, and thus job creation. I think reading the biography of Alexander Hamilton or Vladamir Lenin will justify this.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 10:42 pm: Edit

I repeat, It is fact who creates jobs. So here's a question. For those of you who believe Bush cut taxes for the top 5% because they are his cronies and he patronizes the wealthy, how did you think he would get away with it? Wouldn't the other 95% be up in arms if there was no economic justification? Wouldn't he have known it would kill him politically? Why would any political animal risk his skin for 5% of the population?

By Thermodude (Thermodude) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 10:52 pm: Edit

Of course Bush believes that giving tax cuts to the top 5% (more the top 2%) will help the economy out. And of course, there are many who disagree with him. My own personal philosophy is that small businesses DESERVE those tax cuts. However, rich CEO's who didn't not even CREATE the company they work for and yet earn $600,000 a year and give themselves $10,000,000 bonuses even when there companies do POORLY do NOT deserve the tax cuts. Of course, I am willing to admit that economics is a vastly complicated subject, and I often find that it is further blurred by partisanship.

By Eyesclozedtight (Eyesclozedtight) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:03 pm: Edit

"Why would any political animal risk his skin for 5% of the population?"

because it's george f*cking bush. that's why. why anyone would still vote for him boggles my mind every time.

By Bitz (Bitz) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:17 pm: Edit

Pretty much everybody is oversimplifying things here. While that may be a good idea to some extent (as applied economics gets dicey), it clearly has brought this discussion to a standstill. I, for one, would like to see some discussion of the full picture.

The fact of the matter that Bush's policies have been far from Supply Side in nature. Fully half of the tax cuts thusfar implemented have, in fact, been Keynesian in nature. In a sense, this makes perfect sense. Supply side tactics are necessarily slower in action. Thus, the idea was to give an initial boost of consumption followed by the longer lasting pull of the supply oriented policies. In a perfectly theoretical world, Bush's tax plans were actually right on the money.

However, in reducing the scope of the discussion to merely tax policy, you neglect half of the fiscal landscape. You need to look at tax policy in conjunction with spending policies. Neither one stands alone.

My biggest gripe with the Bush administration isn't tax policy; it is a seeming disregard to the dangers that record deficits pose. Even with a conservative estimation of the damage, it is hard to imagine that our government will be able to reel in the deficit before the national debt reaches a level of at least $10 trillion. The scary truth is that we are probably looking at significantly more than that. As is stands, the combined costs of non-discretionary spending - items such as social security and interest payments on the debt - will match tax revenue soon after the turn of the decade. As that occurs, the government will be forced to make drastic cuts to fairly important programs or raise taxes to levels that will so thoroughly choke the U.S. economy as to drag us down into, at the very least, a steep recession.

It is true that the dual wars on terror and in Iraq have strained the federal budget, but our government should take such factors into account when crafting policy. As young kids we are taught that we cannot have everything at once, but this is exactly the path that Bush has set us down. It is the very same path that doomed Reagan's supply side policies.

I would very much like to see the U.S. adequately attempt a supply side policy, but a time of war is not the best situation in which to accomplish such a feat. The prudent course of action would have been to have dealt with the war and then, as funding was freed up from war sources, cut taxes.

I'm 18 now, about to enter Stanford as a matriculating freshman. I should be viewing my future with all available brightness, but I can't. Instead, I find myself considering what will become of my nation once the current spending finally catches up to us.

Now, for all those ardent Bush supporters who may argue that if I stand against spending I should stand against Kerry, I offer this. No matter how the presidential election concludes, it seems quite certain that Republicans will control both the House and the Senate. It then becomes a simple fact of politics that spending will increase only according to bi-partisan goals. Kerry can campaign on a platform of increased spending all he wants, it simply won't happen - and I am counting on just that. This is the politics of realism. Neither of the presidential candidates seems to hold the moral or ideological high ground, so I am certainly willing to make this an election about consequences and practicality.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:19 pm: Edit

Even W couldn't be that stupid, and I'm no fan. He really lost me and any other true economic conservative when he got down on the Kerry level, pandering to voters by promising things the Country can't possibly afford. Yes Thermodude, the issues are complex and it's become one big blur. But note that Kerry is talking a corporate tax cut. He, too, realizes that job growth in this Country means tax rebates to job creators. Period.

As for greedy CEOs, they are being well taken care of following the market crash. It's now in vogue to go after compensation packages. To be a Director of a public company is to know that your butt will be sued if you vote for unreasonable packages. But there is a hard balance to be struck. Great leaders are hard to come by. A good CEO can choose to be a consultant, a banker--a lot of things that don't come under public investor scrutiny. They are increasingly doing so, leaving a shortage of qualified CEOs. If they are good, create jobs and stakeholder value, they are worth a lot of money. Their salaries are public while those of other professionals with their skills are not and lots of professionals are making lots of money.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:24 pm: Edit

Gosh Bitz, I don't even want to begin talking about the future of things like social security on this forum. Most really want to believe it will all be OK. You are pretty unusual for an 18 year old to understand what you do. Welcome to the Valley. You are about to see the need for some serious supply side economics up close.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:37 pm: Edit

Mom101, Do you believe we have a free market economy?
Bitz, you are very bright.
There is a time for supply side economics, a time for demand side economics, and a time for a more neutral stance.
Mom101, you think that supply side economics is always the way to go.
It isn't .

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:46 pm: Edit

Not always Dstark, but I think it is desperately needed now. Sat in on some meetings at Harvard with economists Friday. I'm learning a lot.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:49 pm: Edit

From what you write, I don't think so.
Maybe you should read what the Noble Prize winning economists who support Kerry are saying.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:52 pm: Edit

Give me some links, I'd love to. Had the war and associated spending not been an issue these past years, we would have had more of a focus on what the economy needed to deal with the full force of free trade kicking in, the market crash and the dot com bust. Stimulus.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 12:02 am: Edit

For starters...
Which Harvard economists are pushing for making the tax cuts permanent?
I love Bush's new idea. After you pay taxes, you can put $30,000 into a tax free account and never pay taxes on any money earned from that $30,000 ever again.
Then, you can spend that tax free money anytime you want.
This is what I am going to do.
Out of the money I already allocated for savings, I am going to place $30,000 a year into these accounts. No new money, just money I was going to allocate for savings anyway.
Then in twenty years I am going to be making, what $50,000 a year, tax free every year.
Thank you Mr. Bush.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 12:02 am: Edit

Help me here Dstark and anyone else. Let's cut the heck out of middle class taxes and roll back tax cuts for the top bracket. We put some cash in people's pockets. Sure it feels good. But will it make a dent in creating a strong middle class again? They have a bit more cash but not better jobs or benefits? We won't make you pay much tax but you still need to replace those jobs in manufacturing and engineering with jobs at Walmart?

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 12:08 am: Edit

It will help the economy by creating more demand from consumers for products. Companies will benefit because they will sell more products and services to meet this rising demand.
Having said that, I actually am not sure about more middle class tax cuts.
If oil prices drop, we might not need anymore tax cuts.
It may be time to cut the deficit instead and not burden our kids.

By Eyesclozedtight (Eyesclozedtight) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 12:15 am: Edit

bitz, you have put into words my feelings exactly. thank you.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 12:22 am: Edit

Come on Dstark, that thinking worked when the products were still made in the USA. Those days long gone. Burden our kids? Way too late. But really, take Bush up on his offer. Everyone needs to really doubt social security as we know it today.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 12:25 am: Edit

I said products and services.
What you like supply side better? Then those that benefit can take the money and just invest it overseas?
I will take Bush up on his offer if he wins and follows through.
Those 10 Noble Prize winners are right.

By Kluge (Kluge) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 01:11 am: Edit

B. F. Skinner had a lot of therories about psychology. He tested them with rats. Some times the result of the experiments contradicted the results predicted by his theories. At first he blamed flaws in the experiments, or the rats themselves. After a while, he realized something significant.

The Rat is Always Right.

I've taken that as a personal motto.

Mom101, as I've repeatedly posted (and backed up with data) over the past 20 years the income tax paid by the wealthiest members of society has declined as a percentage of income, while the income tax percentage on the bottom 50% has stayed the same. All other taxes have increased as a percentage of income on the lower 75% of taxpayers.

So, by your theory, the number of good middle class jobs with benefits should have increased.
But the opposite has happened. Those jobs are disappearing. The percentage of crummy jobs with little or no benefits has risen.

Despite repeated and prolonged tax cuts for the rich.

So which is right? Your theory?

Or the Rat?

By Socalnick (Socalnick) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:22 am: Edit

"The percentage of crummy jobs with little or no benefits has risen."

Im not shure if you kno this but most of those crummy jobs that you are mentioning actually have really good benifits assuming they work full time. A person who works at a grocery store will get full health inshurence with little co pay (used to be none), while an enginner will have to pay for some of their health inshurence plus pay a much higher co pay. there are many college grads that hav chosen to work at those grocery stors because of the benifits.

By Enjoyingthis (Enjoyingthis) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:36 am: Edit

Just curious, Mom101-- how come it was okay for blue-collar-you to marry your CEO-family-husband, but it's a scandal for John Kerry to marry a woman above him on the scale of wealth? Hey, did you ever think maybe he married her because she's one hell of a woman? I think she's great and I always think better of men who do not hesitate to marry strong women.

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 09:45 am: Edit

Just curious, Mom101-- how come it was okay for blue-collar-you to marry your CEO-family-husband, but it's a scandal for John Kerry to marry a woman above him on the scale of wealth?

Men should always hold the power in a relationship.
Therefore it is ok for men to marry younger, even much more attractive women than they, and women can marry older much less attractive men, but the man should always be the one with the money/power
To marry a beautiful,intelligent, opinionated woman who has money?
That throws off the universe!

By Songman (Songman) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 09:48 am: Edit

MOM 101- you couldn't tell from the democratic convention that the democrats have lost their center. The whole convention avoided the tough issues: the far left issues that get all the press during the non- election years. At least the republicans touched on some of their tough issues (far right) not enough though. Both parties are playing games in my opinion. They must think we are all simpletons!

I agree that if one spends time with the CC boards you can find posts that border on a socialistic attitude especially when finacial aid is discussed. No one has been able to explain to me why it is for e.g.( a real life case of someone I know) that a family with an income of $100,000 would not qualify for virtually any aid, yet their daughter had a child at 16, moved out to live with the boyfriend,(parents no longer claim on return)two years later qualifies for financial aid that she would not have qualified for if she had remained at home and followed the ususual path. Yes, I know, she has a hardship now and a low income and all that, but somehow to me this is a redistribution of wealth. The family who has a D or S that did not take this type of detour pays for the kid who did. This kind of stuff makes me

By Songman (Songman) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 09:57 am: Edit

Lefthandof dog- mom 1o1 asked : So I wonder why the redistribution of wealth liberals aren't offended by this gross excess?

You see this question as inflammatory? Then sorry you are in denial...A party cannot say one thing and do the opposite or live the oppposite. I do not believe also that the GOP is innocent in this regard. They are all scalawags as far as I am concerned. MOM 101 asked a legitimate question which is similar to asking why most of the senate voted school vouchers down and virtually all of the senate at the time sent their kids to PRIVATE SCHOOLS! C'mon if this is not hypocrisy then what is?

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:08 am: Edit

Kluge, we had a really robust economy before Bubba created the mess sthat people herte love to blame on Bush. What power, the guy takes office and instantly creates a deep recession! Yesterday in N. Carolina Kerry blamed Bush for outsourcing. Beautiful! It would take years to see the full benefit of tax cuts, hopefully we'll get to.

Enjoyingthis, I just note the coincidence that blue blood but non monied Kerry happened to marry 2 very wealthy women and date others. I was not as strategic. In my case the parents had the money, not the hubby. Darn! I even had to put the guy through grad school!!

But the good news Emerald is that it was worth it. He's both younger and much better looking than me.

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:11 am: Edit

MOM 101 asked a legitimate question which is similar to asking why most of the senate voted school vouchers down and virtually all of the senate at the time sent their kids to PRIVATE SCHOOLS!

I am a liberal and my oldest attended private schools. I do not believe in vouchers or charter schools as a way to improve education.
In my experience when private schools valued economic diversity in the school community, financial aid was readily available and very generous financial aid at that.
Vouchers would not cover a nth of what tuition is at private schools but the wealthy communities surrounding schools do a great deal to raise funds to support the school and all its students, but that is not what I want my tax dollars going for.
We need to support our public schools to a greater extent, not take money away from them for private schools, the private schools don't need the money!

By Songman (Songman) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:11 am: Edit

Kluge- Regarding jobs- You deny the fact that at the same time we changed in this country from a manufacturing economy to a service economy. Technology also accelerated this process tremendously. Eventually as capatalism takes hold in a country(and we have over 350 years at it now, the negative is that it matures no different than a product reaches a maturation stage whereby consumers no longer desire the product. We as a labor force priced oursleves out of the market,and because this is still a free global economy somewhat the wealthy took their business elsewhere to benefit from a lower labor cost and manufacturing cost. In the end we are all buying products that have come down in price in the last 15 years(except for american made products and services). The simple truth is that there is no way a person can manufacture here today and remain competitive unless they cater to the high end (huge profit margin) customer base. Despite what Kerry and his gang say. The argument I have with looking at IRS tax figures is that they quote marginal tax brackets, yet I can tell you that I work with the wealthy and they pay big time taxes on capital gains. Yes those rates were lowered starting in 1987 or so, but at the same time we had the largest growth in assets which resulted in more taxes being paid just at a lower rate. So while you may be correct that percentage of income has been lowered for the wealthy did you look at the top line tax revenue?

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:19 am: Edit

Mom101 and Songman, enough rhetoric. Show me the wealth and income numbers of the middle class for the last 24 years that show supply side economics worked for the middle class.
I am looking forward to seeing these numbers.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:28 am: Edit

Dstark, what has happened to the middle class has nothing to do with income tax rates. As songman, who's willing to take more time than I am, pointed out--it's about a shifting economy. Jobs that created a solid middle class have gone overseas and this is now also happening to people in much higher tax brackets. As you shop today read the lables and good luck finding any that say made in the USA. As I've pointed out again and again, this is not a Republican plot. Both parties have signed the trade agreements that gave us low cost goods and made us have to shift manufacturing and other jobs off shore to be globally competitive.

So can we start discussing how to really create a solid middle class again? Trust me, raising taxes on those earning over $200K might make people feel better for a few seconds, but it won't make a dent.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:32 am: Edit

Mom101, just show me the numbers. I said no bs rhetoric.
Show me the income and wealth numbers of the middle, upper, and lower classes for the last 24 years (when supply side economics started).
Show me the numbers and then analyze.
The numbers should reflect your thinking.
Looking forward to seeing the numbers.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:33 am: Edit

Songman, both parties are playing incredible games. In a meeting this AM, a brilliant young economist did a scathing review of the election season's promises. Unreal, and a total shame that W felt the need to jump on this bandwagon. And backtrack from his statement that the war on terror can't be won. We are, as a country, simpletons when this is what it takes to get elected.

By Alongfortheride (Alongfortheride) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:40 am: Edit

>>>Dstark, what has happened to the middle class has nothing to do with income tax rates.>>>

I don't know what world you live in, but obviously not mine.

By Lefthandofdog (Lefthandofdog) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:42 am: Edit

Songman - what I find inflammatory is the question "die hard liberals: not offended by Kerry lifestyle?" Go back and look at the posts in order and I think you'll see that.

Seems to me that's a question intended to polarize people and it reminds me of bearbaiting. "die hard liberals" - labelling people as incapable of holding nuanced positions and "not offended by Kerry lifestyle" - when you can't win an argument on the merits, resort to ad hominem attack or, in modern times, "lifestyle" attack.

As for me being "in denial" and your linking that thought to the actions of "a party" - look back to the beginning. Mom 101's post had to do with the "Kerry lifestyle" and I am not a political party.

Do you see what she's done? You're attacking me PERSONALLY. She has a gift, I'll give her that.

By Songman (Songman) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 11:12 am: Edit

Left hand- I just don't see it that way. To each his own I guess. I am tired of both parties and would love to see the two party system abolished, but it will probabaly never happen in my lifetime.

It does bother me that Kerry and Edwards have a plan for America (which I am reading diligently-available on .pdf on their website),yet how can they relate to middle class issues? Lest you think I am a fan of Bush and his cohorts you would be wrong! I am sick of the rhetoric, lies,and after election policies that are usually the opposite of what was said in the campaigns. Both parties have let me down in this regard.

You said MOM 101 said something about die hard liberals?....I pasted what she said from post:"that Theresa was a die hard Republican" ." So I wonder why you redistribution of wealth liberals aren't offended by this gross excess"?

She does mention redistribution of wealth liberals. Is it the term "liberal" that bothers you? Being from Massachusetts most people here readily admit that they are "Liberals" so the term is used often and I did not give it a second thought. Just like far right (which is not a philosophy that most republicans believe) is used by liberals all the time or they use hawks,neo cons,conservative and other labels

By Songman (Songman) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 11:15 am: Edit

Lefthand- Your are correct! I noticed MOM 101 titled her topic "Die hard leberals"-so I ask again it is the label "Die hard liberals" that bothers you? or is inflammatory?

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 12:51 pm: Edit

More Nobel Prize winners for Kerry. This time in the science field.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 01:21 pm: Edit

Lefthand of dog, if you read through the political posts on this board it is clear, to me anyway, that most people are not capable of "nuanced positions." It's all pretty much black or white. It was an honest question that I posed. How do people believe a guy who went to St. Paul's and Yale while they were still elitist, married wealthy women and lives a lifestyle enjoyed by the top .00000001%, understands the plight of the poor and middle class?

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 01:53 pm: Edit

Because that issue is just a sideshow.
Do you disagree with the arguments the Nobel Prize winners (both economists and scientists) state in supporting Kerry?
Which statements do you disagree with and why?
Where are all the Nobel prize winners for Bush?
Which Harvard economists support making the tax cuts permanent?
Where are the numbers about income and wealth that support the supply side position?
We have had 24 years of supply side. Where are the numbers?
I have a feeling I am going to have to wait until hell freezes over.

By Fundingfather (Fundingfather) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:20 pm: Edit

Regarding the Nobel Prize winners: One of their claims revolves around global warming - implying that Kerry would be better than Bush. This is interesting since, as a senator, Kerry (along with something like 97 other senators) espoused the same views about the Kyoto treaty that Bush used to ultimately nix it. His view, as also expressed by Bush, was that unless China, India and other developing countries were held to to the same standards, the US should not endorse the accord.

Given that their positions are so similar on the issue, I wonder how much credence that we should give to this group. How much of their endorsement is based on science versus politics?

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:22 pm: Edit

That is one claim.
You have got to be kidding.
What? Kerry and Bush have to disagree about everything in order for Kerry to differentiate himself and make him a better candidate?

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:29 pm: Edit

Dsstark, I agree with everything the scientists say except that Kerry is the answer. Bush is wrong about a lot of things IMO and not funding stem cell research is one of them. Yes, Kerry has promised to do so in his 2 tillion dollar fantasy. Maybe we'll get to see what he does though it's looking less likely. And if you read my posts, I've been screaming that we need to let foreign students in the sciences back into the Country. This is a huge problem! But because of 911 and outsourcing, Americans are anti immigration right now. What's Kerry, Mr. outsourcing foe, going to do there?

I have some numbers on what cutting taxes does to job growth that I'll post when I get home. No other numbers though.

As for science or politics, if you can find me the academic who is not liberal please let me know. I am surrounded.

By Fundingfather (Fundingfather) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:35 pm: Edit

OK, lets look at another of their assertions:

restricting immigration - there is more at hand here than just the scientific perspective; while this group calls for easier immigration of scientists and engineers, there are a whole lot of unemployed scientists and engineers right now that aren't too thrilled with having their jobs taken by an influx of cheap foreign labor. From a pure technical/scientific perspective (which is the only view that they are qualified to speak about) it may make sense to open the borders. However, from a jobs and human perspective there is another side of the story.

My point is that these guys may be brilliant from a scientific perspective, but political decisions can not be made purely for scientific reasons.

By Fundingfather (Fundingfather) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:40 pm: Edit

What? Kerry and Bush have to disagree about everything in order for Kerry to differentiate himself and make him a better candidate?

No, my point was that by them including it as one of their rationales for supporting Kerry it shows the group to be politically biased. The inference from their letter was that Kerry had a different and better view about global warming than Bush. They failed to mention that their views are almost identical. Hence, it looks like a typical political endorsement rather than a "scientific" one.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:42 pm: Edit

I don't want the cutting taxes numbers.
I want the income and wealth numbers during supply side economics (which includes huge tax cuts, anyway ).
If supply side economics has been so good for Americans, don't you think the income and wealth numbers would reflect this? In fact, the numbers would reflect this.
So, let's see those numbers.
The average American's income and wealth must have exploded over the last 24 years.
Can't wait to see these numbers. Maybe, you could ask one of your Republican economists for the numbers. They must have these numbers plastered all over their walls...they are so good.
On a side note, your friend from Berkeley who told you that 4 year grad rates have been dropping for 20, 30 years.
Any links to support those numbers?

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:44 pm: Edit

Fundingfather, Their views on global warming are not identical. You know that. Whether they agreed about Kyoto doesn't change this fact.

By Fundingfather (Fundingfather) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 02:47 pm: Edit

Supporting facts?

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 03:36 pm: Edit

If you type in google differences between Bush and Kerry on global warming you will get 19,000 responses.
You might find a few links that you find relevant.
Here are a couple:
Where is the link that says Kerry doesn't back Kyoto?
Does Bush even believe in global warming?

By Enjoyingthis (Enjoyingthis) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 03:48 pm: Edit

Mom101--you're totally out of line, calling Kerry "strategic" for dating women wealthier than he is. How on earth can you presume to know why he dated any certain woman? Who made you judge and jury of other people's relationships? Meanwhile, your smugness over what you seem to see as your own clever match is downright icky.

Emerald-- I'm with you on all you said.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 04:19 pm: Edit

Foundingfather, found links about Kerry and Kyoto.

By Fundingfather (Fundingfather) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 04:35 pm: Edit


WHEN SEN. JOHN Edwards addressed The Chronicle editorial board in February before the Democratic primaries, I asked him if he would ask the Senate to ratify the Kyoto global warming treaty. "Yes," the presidential candidate answered. Then, he added, he believed Sen. John Kerry shared his position. Wrong.

The next day, when presidential candidate Kerry talked to The Chronicle editorial board, he said that he would not ask the Senate to ratify Kyoto.
Now the Democratic Party has dropped support for Kyoto (a plank in the 2000 party platform) from the initial draft of the national platform for 2004.

Many news stories in 1997 referred to Kerry's support of Kyoto, undeterred by the Massachusetts senator's vote with 94 other senators for a resolution that directed President Clinton to not agree to a global warming pact that exempted developing nations.

Based on at least one of your links, it sounds like Kerry is trying to play both sides of the fence (once again) by making people believe that he does support Kyoto.

Bush has also called for R&D into hydrogen fuel cells.

I will give you the fact that Kerry is calling for improved gas mileage (However, I wonder what his opinion is when campaigning in Michigan.). However, both sides screwed up - they missed a perfect opportunity for compromise: drilling in Anwar in exchange for improved mileage requirements.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 05:06 pm: Edit

Bush is also trying to play both sides of the fence.
But you are right Kerry isn't going to support Kyoto.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 05:59 pm: Edit

Dstark, thanks for being big enough to write the last post. Not enough of that here. I got a funny email from a well respected young participant on these boards today telling me to stop arguing with Simba and Kluge and giving me some history. It all does start to sound pretty silly.

Enjoyingthis, I simply expressed my opinion that Kerry marrying 2 very wealthy women was interesting to me. Given the low incidence of women as wealthy as these two in society, it is significant. Nothing more, nothing less. As for my own marriage, I suppose it is clever to have married someone I loved. Is that what you meant?

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 06:08 pm: Edit

Mom101, I am not an idealogue. I am interested in what works.
You are the idealogue.
That's why I can't wait to see the income and wealth numbers for the last 24 years.
I am sure that they are at the fingertips of all economists that support supply side economics.
I love economists that want tax cuts no matter what.
No matter who it affects.
No matter what happens to the deficit.
No matter how it affects the next generation.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 06:23 pm: Edit

Why do you beklieve supply side doesn't work? Is it because of the decline of the middle class?

I am not an economist, but the numbers I see on what creates job growth, which to me is the number one thing we need as a country, is enough for me to support Bush's tax cuts. Feel free to prove me wrong. I have no self interest here. As a student of education I will probably never make 6 figures again.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 06:56 pm: Edit

Mom101, between your husband and yourself when you include interest income, capital gains, maybe what he makes and everything else, You will still be up there.
You have a lot of friends who are economists right.
Just ask to see the numbers of the last 24 years.
You will see why people are pissed off.
Now it is true that cutting taxes can be beneficial and I have supported this policy many times, but when you have deficits like we do with the demographics we have, these tax cuts are a time bomb.
Here is one analogy.
If everyone would spend everything they make, and then borrow to the max, the economy in the short run would boom. BOOM!!!! BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!
Then at some point, the debt load would get to be too large and everyone couldn't do this anymore.
We couldn't handle the debt obligations.
We would implode and go lower than anyone ever thought possible. Kind of like the stock market bubble, but worse.
A depression would result in a worst case.
Anyway, my point is too much of anything is a bad thing, and that includes tax cuts, especially to people that don't necessarily need them.
The average tax cut from Bush for the top 1% of tax payers was $75,000 a year...more than the average family household.
The average adjusted income for the top 1% was around $1.7 million.
I'm sorry, with these deficits, and the coming demographics, I don't buy this tax cut.
Our federal government spends around 22% of the GDP (Somebody can correct me if I am a little off).
The government takes in more than 3% less, around 19%.
We are growing around 3% with 3% inflation.
We shouldn't be running deficits like that with our future demographics.
So we can cut government or increase taxes.
The supply siders say we will grow out of the deficits.
If you look at the last 24 years, almost all the growth goes to the top 25%.
The other 75% got bupkis.
So why should the 75% of the population think supply side economics is going to work for them after 24 years.
Why, after 24 years of supply side economics, do we have massive deficits?
What are we going to do when we age and become less productive as a country?
I don't support any more middle class tax cuts either as long as the economy is performing as it is.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 07:18 pm: Edit

Dstark, it's hard to disagree that individuals making $1.7 million need the extra 75K. I wish I had my files here, but a significant percentage of the top 5% of tax payers are actually companies. Why they don't just incorporate I don't know. But the number of jobs created by giving this group a break is significant. Exactly why, again, I'm not certain. I don't personally know a lot of economists. My focus on outsourcing has put me in contact with a lot. I will be asking sosme different questions.

No one in my household is employed and makes an "income" at this point. For many of the wealthy in this country, cap gains is the significant tax, not income tax. Interestingly, a recent poll in CA showed the majority do not want to increase capital gains taxes. Why? Baby boomers are inheriting homes from their parents that they bought 30 plus years ago. The gains are enormous.
People, not surprisingly, are only willing to vote for taxes that will not effect them. An article I was given by an economist this morning put forward the hypothesis that most people think taxes should kick in just above the level at which they would have to pay, other than the uber wealthy. Bill Gates and Warren Buffett believe in inheritence tax while those with $1 million think it should only effect those with over $2 million and those with $2 million believe it should kick in at $5 million. So interesting.....

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 08:16 pm: Edit

Covering Bush in N. Carolina today, the Boston anchor, looking very serious, intones: N. Carolina has lost 165,000 jobs in manufacturing since Bush took office, most in his first year......

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 09:09 pm: Edit

Mom101, you are right...people want the other guy to pay taxes.
One thing I should have added.
Yes, tax cuts and subsidies to the wealthy, and businesses can lead to jobs.
Tax cuts and subsidies to the poor and middle class also can lead to jobs.
If there is more demand for products and services, businesses are more likely to hire so they can capture this business.
Now if I am one of the 75% that didn't see the benefits of supply side economics (tax cuts and subsidies for the wealthy hoping it would trickle down), don't you think I might be more apt to support demand style economics? ( Tax cuts and subsidies directly to me, then I am supposed to spend the money giving companies more revenue and then they will hire).
You don't have to be employed to have an income.
Most of the really wealthy make their money in capital gains, dividends, interest, money from business ventures.
I agree that the baby boomers are going to want low inheritance taxes since they are the next generation to benefit from inheritance.
People in California wanting low capital gains taxes, especially for housing...yes.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:09 pm: Edit

Exactly, the really wealthy don't make their money from income. Many started out by doing so, but by the time you have real wealth, income from employment is not likely to be the source. This is why the focus on the income tax rate for those making over $200K/yr seems silly to me. Those of you who live in major CA cities and suburbs, NYC and Westchester, Fairfield County, Shaker Heights, Winnetka, Palm Beach and the like know that $200K hardly makes you rich. Anyone who has run a small business (I had 40 employees at one time and did this) and run it through your personal taxes knows that despite high six figures, you're not rich.

Dstark, I'd like to see more money in people's pockets. Think about what you're saying though. If we cut taxes by 5% for those making $60K, we know how the $3K is likely to be spent. Consumer products, lead by electronics, is first. These products are highly unlikely to be manufactured here. So what jobs are created? More part time, no benefit jobs at Walmart, Costco and Best Buy is the answer. If that. We may just suffer longer lines for a bit after tax refund day. Savings will not increase. No sustainable jobs will be created. Does this mean we shouldn't cut taxes for these folks? No. I am a firm believer that we need to do some feel good things to stop the ever increasing divide in the Country. And we should go ahead and raise the taxes of the perceived wealthy if that will end some antagonism as far as I'm concerned. I honestly believe those making $1.7M would rather pay the extra $75K than have their family be targets of the growing hate.

But the question remains--what shall we do to really heal the Country? When will we as a whole understand that the middle class is in decline and will continue to be unless we provide every incentive possible to grow solid jobs with benefits? Will we ever stop faulting the leaders du jour and admit that we signed a whole bunch of trade agreements that were great in theory if we provided our people the education to move to the next step in creation of industry? Does anyone really think Bush lost North Carolina 165,000 manufacturing jobs that Kerry can get them back? When are we going to get real?

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:18 pm: Edit

Mom101, The world is not going to fall apart if Kerry is elected.
We give presidents too much credit or blame for the economy.
The amount of workers coming into the future compared to the past is miniscule.
This is one reason social security is in trouble.
This is one reason kids who are getting educated today are going to be better off then we think.
In 20 years, these kids are going to be around 35 years old and sitting pretty unless we don't pay our bills.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:32 pm: Edit

Mom101, I am also not sure why you think the money from tax cuts is going to be spent on electronic and overseas products?
Some of the money might, but some might be spent on food, clothing, vacations, better medical care, books, tutors, sporting events, downpayments for cars, etc.
Some of the money businesses and wealthy people get is also spent or invested overseas.
I don't see why this is better than the former.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:33 pm: Edit

I agree that it doesn't much matter who the next President is. I disagree that kids being educated today will be sitting pretty. Global competition is going to kick their butts if we don't fix education in this country quickly. Sound bites from Kerry today: "These kids will be left behind (pun intended) because the present administration isn't funding educational mandates." Well golly John, the last one didn't either. I've sat on a few school boards over the last 15 years and this is a bad habit of both parties. Amazing that your administration will be the first in decades to find the money to do so! Third world countries are doing better. And further, it doesn't much matter what the feds do. Education comes down to what the States do. So the rhetoric is just that--rhetoric.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:43 pm: Edit

There is always rhetoric from both sides.
Are you pro-life?
Do you believe in the government supporting religious charities?
I know you believe in stem cell research.
Do you want to drill for oil in Alaska?
Who kind of people would you like to see appointed to the Supreme Court?

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 10:55 pm: Edit

I'm very liberal socially and of course support abortion rights. No to religious charities. Yes to stem cell research although I'm fine with it being in domain of private sector. Yes to gay marriage. Let's not depend on other countries for energy any longer than we have to. People who can think on Supreme Court. My brother and I were talking about this today. We were raised by a flaming liberal who had half the Democrat party in NY speak at her memorial last week. They had all just come from demonstrations--most in their 70's. Both of us social liberals, economic conservatives. He's married to a flamer, too.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 11:02 pm: Edit

So you are voting for Bush because of his economic policies?
Any other reasons?
I am socially liberal and economically conservative. I don't find Bush economically conservative and I hate his social policies.
I am willing to vote against my pocketbook.
Are you voting for Bush because of how his tax policies affect you?
I do know people that can't stand Bush, but are part of the top 2% income wise, and are voting their pocketbook.
Are you not worried about the Supreme Court?
Some of those justices are old.

By Enjoyingthis (Enjoyingthis) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 11:14 pm: Edit

Mom101-"As for my own marriage, I suppose it is clever to have married someone I loved. Is that what you meant?"

Obviously not, since you said nothing about love.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 11:19 pm: Edit

Who said I was voting for Bush? Would I rather see him then Kerry? Yes. If only to stop this two party stop and start nonsense. Will No Child Left Behind work? Certainly not if Kerry is elected. Tax cuts pay off? Again, no if Kerry is in. Voting with my pocketbook would mean looking only at capital gains and I have a feeling it will remain stable. Would another 5% make me blink? No. But I'll be out of the Country on voting day and haven't yet asked for an absentee ballott, my home being CA for now it doesn't much matter.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 11:23 pm: Edit

Mom101, I don't know how the issues you mentioned are more important than the issues I mentioned where you are closer to Kerry's idealogy. I guess I will just live and learn.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Tuesday, September 07, 2004 - 11:50 pm: Edit

Dstark, it's really quite simple. Abortion rights are a given and that's not going to change. Nut cases all over America will determine gay marriage, not the President. Stem cell research will be driven by industry. I support Republican economic policy and that is where a President will have a say. That said, we'll have a Republican congress anyway so it really doesn't matter. Again, just like to stop the stop and start more than anything.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 12:03 am: Edit

I think abortion rights aren't a given.
A future Supreme Court may have a say about abortion rights and gay marriage.
I support public financing of stem cell research.
Harvard gets $300 million a year from the government. I am willing to give this school a few more bucks along with others to do stem cell research.
I am very disappointed with Republican economic policy.
They are the borrow and spend party.
The stop to stop and start doesn't mean anything to me.
But you may be right about abortion rights, and gay marriage not being affected by whoever is president.

By Thermodude (Thermodude) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 12:17 am: Edit

Mom101, just curious, what is your stand on environmental policies? The Bush administration's environmental record is perhaps the worst in several administrations.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 12:18 am: Edit

I was thinking about it and should explain that I have disliked Kerry since the early 80s when I was a college student doing a term at Harvard and my roomate was an intern for him. In all fairness, I've never been up close and personal with Bush. But Kerry is a consumate political animal, determining his positions based on results of focus groups, then and now. Off Shoring? Lets pretend we can stop it if that's what voters want and I can win! It's what he did then and what he's doing now. Bush frankly has sunk to the same level. We can't win the war on terror (true IMO) one day and we can the next. Guiliani is the only politician I've ever seen truly stand his ground. Rudy for President!

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 12:25 am: Edit

There are only 2 things in life, as far as I can tell, that people will accuse you of doing anything for. Staying rich and staying thin. If you're rich you're voting against good values--a voting disorder. If you're thin you must have an eating disorder.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 01:05 am: Edit

Mom101, I hope you really end up talking to economists that think differently than you do.
Marite, I missed your link yesterday about how the government spends its money.
Mom101, instead of immediately thinking Marite's link is an attack at the rich, why don't you look at what the government is doing. Just look at it and think without getting so defensive. Should the government really be supporting some of these programs?

By Abeppu (Abeppu) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 01:24 am: Edit

I haven't followed the whole of the thread, so ignore me if this has become off topic, but in addressing the question in the inital post, I really think that's the wrong take. If you're going to peg Kerry for being lavish, you shoot yourself in the foot...you've got to be rich just to be a contender. I think if you're going to get Kerry with that sort of reasoning, there's a better point to address -- that his economic plan, in attacking outsourcing is based on a centrist, elitist and unegalitarian philosophy, which really only stands in the way of globalism, and maintains the despotism between the US and the rest of the world. This, however, is trumped by the fact that Bush is worse. Kerry's constituency, and the whole of the "Anybody but Bush" camp knows how to pick the lesser of two evils...and the smarter too.

By Marite (Marite) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 01:51 am: Edit

Income Redistribution, GOP-Style
The House takes money from the poor and spends it on the rich.
By Timothy Noah
Posted Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2002, at 2:48 PM PT

This link came up when I googled income redistribution

I also had a chance to leaf through a book by Daniel Altman, Neoconomics, that seeks to explain Bush's economic philosophy. I should read it carefully before commenting. What I got so far is that Bush, influenced by Martin Fedlstein of Harvard, is seeking to redirect the American economy by promoting savings. I'm not sure how that gets reconciled with the project $3.29 trillion deficit. Gregory Mankiw has expressed concern of its size, as have other economists. Both candidates have made costly promises.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 02:04 am: Edit

Marite that is a great link.
I don't know how anybody who is against big government can support these Republican policies.
I would love to know what Milton Friedman thinks of Bush.

By Jlq3d3 (Jlq3d3) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 02:06 am: Edit

I am against the big gov of bush, but even more against the bigger gov of dems/kerry. Kerry has proposed over 2 trillion in new spending.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 02:25 am: Edit

Yes, but if the Republicans still control Congress, Kerry won't get his spending programs passed.
Plus, I find the spending shift from the poor to the rich disgusting.
Why is my tax money going to the rich?
People who need to eat, sure, for the disabled, of course, but mortgage insurance? Let people pay for their own mortgage insurance.

By Jlq3d3 (Jlq3d3) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 03:21 am: Edit

dstark, my ideal is tax cuts and spending cuts. Bush carried through with tax cuts, but the congress was barly a republican margin so spending could not be reigned in. There were many dem filibusters. The gop has a plan to cut the deficit in half within 5 years, while retaining the much needed capital gains, dividend, and income tax cuts for all. And it looks like the republicans will gain a few senate seats, so I am hoping this happens. If kerry is elected, spendig cuts will be impossible, and this deficit will baloon.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 06:38 am: Edit

Dstark, most people do pay their own mortgage insurance. Clearly this was a program helping first time home buyers. But don't get me started on all of the uncalled for places our tax dollars go.

Enjoyingthis, Oh. Then what a bitter, ugly, comment. Hopefully you, too, will someday find something or someone to make you happy.

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 07:10 am: Edit

\Not that anyone was asking, but this makes me far more distressed than any amount of money that either party spends on whine and cheese for their dinner parties.


Winner of the 2003 Pulitzer Prize For General Nonfiction National Book Critics Circle Award Winner

In her award-winning interrogation of the last century of American history, Samantha Power -- a former Balkan war correspondent and founding executive director of Harvard's Carr Center for Human Rights Policy -- asks the haunting question: Why do American leaders who vow "never again" repeatedly fail to stop genocide? Drawing upon exclusive interviews with Washington's top policy makers, access to newly declassified documents, and her own reporting from the modern killing fields, Power provides the answer in "A Problem from Hell" -- a groundbreaking work that tells the stories of the courageous Americans who risked their careers and lives in an effort to get the United States to act.


By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 09:17 am: Edit

Jlq3d3, for the first time in our lifetime, we had a Republican controlled Congress and a Republican president.
The GDP always talks a good fiscal game, but if you look at the last 24 years, they don't deliver.
I don't care what is said, I care what is done.
If Kerry is elected with a Republican Congress the deficit will balloon the same way it balooned under Clinton. Oh, I forgot, it didn't balloon under Clinton.
There is a lot to be said for the two parties splitting the government.
If we didn't spend so much money on the rich, the tax cuts would be more viable.
Bush and Jimmy Carter are the two worst presidents economically in our lifetimes.
The list of Nobel Prize winners includes people that wrote the text books about economics.
Maybe, you remember studying their work.
They are right about Bush.
Mom101, the fact that most people pay for their own mortgage insurance is irrelevant.

By Browninfall (Browninfall) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 10:01 am: Edit


If you are referring to tax cuts, your tax money isn't ging to the rich. It's their money. They earned it, not you.

By Bitz (Bitz) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 10:58 am: Edit

Jlq3d3, you need to reevaluate what has actually happened over the past four years. The problem has very little to do with a failure to "reign spending in". Spending levels have increased, not merely failed to drop. Furthermore, you are quick to praise the President for passing Congress and just as quick to blame Congressional Democrats for a failure to deal with the spending issue. The plain fact is that both the tax cuts and the spending increases have gone through a GOP majority congress. A united GOP certainly could have limited spending with or without Dem support.

Also, there seems to be a feeling among posters on this board that if tax cuts and spending cuts combine to form a proper policy, then just tax cuts should be an excellent start. This is simply false logic. Prudent fiscal policy demands that both be accomplished AT THE SAME TIME. This would be the only way to avoid what will otherwise become a crippling debt. Even if the Republicans could reduce the deficit by 50% over the next 5 years, we are still looking at a national debt near $10 trillion.

The most productive economic times this country have ever seen (in terms of GDP growth, limiting unemployment and inflation, and lower average deficits) have come under split Federal governments with a Democrat in the White House and Republicans on Capitol Hill. It seems that if we can't deal with true bipartisan cooperation, the next best thing is a bipartisan implementation of chacks and balances.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 11:07 am: Edit

Bitz, I can see why Stanford wants you.
You already know more about economics than most people your senior. You understand reality.
What is your major going to be?

By Enjoyingthis (Enjoyingthis) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 11:18 am: Edit

Mom101-- I have him. 30 years.

By Browninfall (Browninfall) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 11:34 am: Edit

Actually it's not false logic. If the economy needs a kick to get going, then tax cuts are one of the ways that economists recommend to jump start the economy. It was the right thing for Bush to do just as it was for President Kennedy back in the 1960s. Our economy is better off for it today because of the Bush tax cuts.

I like the fact that some Democrats are finally starting to buy into the idea that restraining government spending is a good thing. Historically the view of the Democratic Party ran contrary to that idea. Democrats argued that more government spending was better than less because it acted as a stimulus to the economy. Most Republicans, especially conservative ones, have been arguing for decades that too much government spending is actually a drag on the economy. Glad to see that some of you on the left are starting to see the light.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 11:35 am: Edit

Too bad those on the right, those who actually have the political power, haven't seen the light.

By Browninfall (Browninfall) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 12:00 pm: Edit

Dstark: Guess what, I agree with you. To me it's the biggest failing of the Bush Administration, and that's why there are so many conservatives who are not entirely happy with his Presidency.

What's especially ironic, though, is that there are so many people who argue on the one hand that the federal government needs to restrain its spending while complaining at the same time that President Bush isn't spending enough on education or welfare or cleaning up the environment, etc. Those people are called hypocrites.

It's actually quite amazing that the economy is doing as well as it is considering what we've gone through these past few years. President Bush takes office at a time when the economy is starting to tank and then our economy has to deal with the disastrous blow of 9/11. Add in the war in Afghanistan, Iraq, and assorted corporate scandals and you step back and go "pretty damn good job".

By Bakk (Bakk) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 12:05 pm: Edit

Bitz, not all spending is evil. Government spending can take the form of investments. Since you like to analyze the history of economic cycles, you might be interested to research the manner our government worked its way out of the Great Depression.

While it may have been beneficial to rei(g)n in spending, does Bush deserves attacks for having doubled the spending on education? And does the Clinton-Gore duo deserves kudos for having underspent on education during their 8 years reign? There is a huge difference between waste spending and productive spending. For instance, the cost of the huge military buildup of the Reagan years was dwarfed by the huge benefits of the end of the cold war.

One of the problems of the US -in politics and on Wall Street- stems from its focus on short-term policies and short-term results. The return on long-term investments is rarely computed correctly, and in politics usually credited to the wrong party or President.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 12:15 pm: Edit

Browninfall, I wouldn't necessarily call these people hypocrites.
You can be calling for less spending than the Bush administration supports and at the same time want that lesser amount of spending to occur in different areas than is currently happening.

By Bitz (Bitz) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 01:05 pm: Edit

Bakk, I realize that spending isn't necessarily a bad thing. The New Deal policies that brought this country out of the Depression were a prime example of how Keynesian thought could be quite productive. It (combined with WWII spending and the subsequent post-war boom) formed the backbone of an economic movement that would dominate almost half a century.

The major problem that I see is that politicians tend to believe that Keynesian and Supply Side theories are at complete odds all of the time. This simply isn't the case if you look further into the theories. Emphasizing that one is correct neglects the fact that supply and demand are linked. Each policy has its place.

Supply side economics was developed to deal with an issue of stagflation. In such a situation, the national economy is producing at or near full capacity, but demand (fueled by Keynesian policies) is outpacing growth in supply. This leads to a rapid rise in prices without a corresponding rise in real output. Thus, the proper solution is to spur growth in supply.

However, this is only one possibility for a recession. The other exists when a nation is not producing anywhere near full capacity. When recessions hit at such times, the problem is not a lack of supply, but a lack of demand. The major differentiating symptom of this type of recession is a lack of significant inflation. Such a lack is a signal that an increase in supply will do relatively little to help the situation because the nation has excess productive capacity that would be used if the demand were there.

Keynesian policies are not the cause of economic woes. Instead, it is a reluctance to see that one solution does not fit all problems. Keynesian policies are remarkably useful in spurring demand when it is lacking, but attempting to quash a "stagflation" recession with Keynesian logic is simply fueling the fires. The same works, in reverse, with Supply Side tactics.

Furthermore, Supply side policies are the best solution for non-recession policy as they provide the economic kick-in-the-pants to increase potential GDP, not merely realized GDP. In the long-run, a government should seek policies that expand such potential, thus providing private entities the opportunity to grow rather than simply providing the growth itself.

Thus, one must look at proper fiscal policy not as either Supply-Side of Keynesian, but rather as a compilation of the two, each used at the correct times.

Oh, and three more things.

1) For you tax cut junkies - A tax cut is not necessarily a supply-side measure. Keynesian tactics often call for tax cuts. They are simply of a different nature than those advocated by Supply-Siders. Bush's cuts have been approximately 50% Supply-Side oriented and 50% Keynesian and a good chunk of his early rhetoric was Keynesian in nature ("putting cash back in the pockets of Americas consumers", etc.)

2) Browninfall, I wasn't claiming that the false logic was that tax cuts were a viable way to spur the economy. Jlq3d3's post seemed to read as if he was happy that Bush went through with half of the plan. In such a case, it would be false logic that if A&B are good then A alone should be good. There are plenty of people who follow the idea that tax cuts coupled with spending cuts is the only way to go and a large number of those are upset with Bush's fiscal recklessness. Whether or not they end up voting for Bush, I'm sure they wish they could instead elect a more conservative candidate. If I misinterpreted Jlq3d3's intentions, I apologize.

3)Browninfall, I don't know if you were directing the comment "I like the fact that some Democrats are finally starting to buy into the idea that restraining government spending is a good thing." at me, but if you were, I guess I should point out that I am not really a Democrat. I am a registered Independent with some very eclectic political views. I'm a social liberal/economic conservative. I guess if I had to choose between the two major parties, however, I would be a Democrat because if is far moor difficult to change the social leanings of a party than the economic ones. This seems to stem from the fact that social views are influenced almost entirely by subjective means while economics is significantly more academic and thus influenced by logic (at least one would hope).

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 01:28 pm: Edit

Bitz, I read your posts and can't believe how much you know and how well you present yourself.

By Browninfall (Browninfall) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 01:54 pm: Edit

The Democrats have been the tax and spend party for decades. I look forward to observing the influence that your logic is going to have on Mr. Kerry, a proud tax and spender, if he gets elected. Good luck.

I don't think that most of the electorate is going to approach this year's election as you are. Though economic issues and social ones are important, who can better protect us from the Islamofascists who are bent on destroying us and the rest of the nonIslamic world is going to be on most people's minds when they enter the voting booth. It's why John Kerry spends most of his time talking about his days in Vietnam. He knows it, just as the President knows it.

By Fundingfather (Fundingfather) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 03:00 pm: Edit

Browninfall: Agree. There is too much natural impedance in the system for a President to drastically impact social or economic policies. However, the Commander in Chief role that a President plays is extremely powerful. To doubt this, just look at what the world order would look like now if, in 1991, there was a President Kerry rather than a President Bush (41). I shudder at the thought.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 03:57 pm: Edit

Social liberal, economic conservatives. For those of us who believe we have a heart and a brain, what other combination is there? The irony lies in how each of us believes we get to the manifistation of this social equity and economic strength for all. Yes, Bitz is head and shoulders above most of his peers in thought process. It does explain why Stanford accepted him. I did a fairly through study on a portion of last year's freshman class and they do a great job of finding Bitz and his true peers. But the thing that stumps me is that I'm not an economist. Nor is Bitz, Dstark or any other poster here as far as I can tell. Bitz is the most realistic in noting the complexity of the issues. Just when I think I have it figured out someone throws in something I don't know how to calculate.

So Dstark, should we not help first time home buyers? Is the best form of helping them paying their mortgage insurance? I don't know and I never hope to commit brain share to knowing. But I do know that I will never consider this helping the rich because simply, it isn't.

The two party BS has gotten to the point where it is just plain dumb to defend the rhetoric. Oh yes, farm subsidies are helping the rich Republicans! Kerry wants to make welfare mother's millionaires!!

It is just too damn bad that the Country is losing in global competition, the dollar is weak and our dominance is truly teetering while we wage a civil war.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 04:04 pm: Edit

Mom101, you don't know very much about me.
Your understanding of economics limits you.
If I knew what you knew, I wouldn't be going all over the boards expouting my theories like they were facts.
Did you catch Greenspan today?
Did you see what he said to Congressman Brown?
Tax cuts don't always pay for themselves.
Supply side economics doesn't always work.
Don't believe me.
That is why I mentioned the Nobel prize winning economists.
And maybe you will believe Greenspan.

By Jlq3d3 (Jlq3d3) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 04:40 pm: Edit

"The two party BS has gotten to the point where it is just plain dumb to defend the rhetoric. Oh yes, farm subsidies are helping the rich Republicans! Kerry wants to make welfare mother's millionaires!!"

You can complain about the parties, but the two party system is the best overall.

By Pkpat2000 (Pkpat2000) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 04:44 pm: Edit

Bitz is the man because he understands economics.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 04:48 pm: Edit

Mom101, I'm far more offended by your OP than I am by the Kerry's lifestyles. The issue isn't what wealth they have or don't have but the political policies they promote. (Btw, almost every small town breathes a sigh of relief when a president or candidate leaves town after vacationing...if you had to deal with the impact of all the security arrangements, you'd breathe a sigh of relief too.)

Flat out, Bush is practicing class warfare and then having the nerve to decry the same of anyone who calls him on it. The shift of the tax burden on to the middle class, more explictly to earned income--that earned by people working for a paycheck--from the extremely wealthy who live off of investment trusts is punitive in the extreme.
I realize that some would like to return to a bygone era where the nobility collected their rents while the serfs toiled on a subsistence level...implications for national strength aside, there is no justice there. Taxes,

Cry no tears for the wealthy. The top 1 percent take 21 percent of the income and control over 50 percent of the wealth; the top 5 percent control 70 percent of the wealth.

Bush's obsession with tax cuts is reminiscent of the old saw that everything looks like a nail if all you have is a hammer. Of course, Bush has a theological belief that taxes are evil; I'll side with Oliver Wendell Holmes who called taxes the price we pay for a civilized society.

Bush says "everyone" will get a tax break. The average break was $1,083. For the middle quintile, it was $227. For the 42 percent of tax payers who are not married and/or don't have children, it averaged $50.

For the top 1 percent, the average break was $20,762. For the top .2 percent (roughly $1M+ annuallly), the average break was $89,509.
50 million households get *no* break because they paid no federal taxes, had no children, and didn't have any dividends or capital gains to speak of.

8 million children didn't get any benefit from the $1,000/child tax credit because they're in the poorest families that don't pay taxes in the first place. This could have been corrected by raising the top rate from 35 percent to 35.3 percent but, in the words of Tom DeLay, "it ain't gonna happen."

42 percent of the tax cuts went to the top 1 percent. The average percentage of decrease of taxes was 15 percent for the top 1 percent, 7 percent for the remaining 99 percent.

So please don't snivel about "redistribute the wealth." You're making out just fine.

Browninfall, actually, it was Democrat Bill Clinton who swallowed hard on a lot of spending programs, resisting the more liberal elements in his own party, that resulted in the deficit reduction and subsequent surpluses. Bush's running up the deficit is criminal, given the inter-relationship between deficits, interest rates, and national power. Cry "tax-and-spend Democrats" all you want but the two biggest deficit run ups have been under Reagan/Bush I and now Bush II.

FundingFather continues to cling to the lifeboat, the lie that ties Iraq to terrorism. Afghanistan was necessary to strike at the Taliban. Meanwhile in Iraq, our actions our creating a generation of Islamists who see the US as an oppressive occupying force. By words and deeds, we're playing *exactly* into the hands of Osama bin Laden, who portrays the US in a battle of the US versus Islam. Read the surveys of the Iraqis: even those who welcomed the overthrow of Saddam Hussein want us out of there and out of there now. Bush hasn't a friggin' clue about terrorism or Iraq...nearly 900 US service personnel have died since that idiot cowboy pranced across the aircraft carrier deck proclaiming "Mission Accomplished." Bush has no understanding of Iraq; Colin Powell told him "If we break it, we own it" and all Bush had was visions of flowers being thrown by the grateful populace...what an idiot.

Follow the money: the US had more than 90 percent of the first Gulf War underwritten by the rest of the world; in Iraq now, more than 90 percent of the cost is being borne by us. Except for the Brits, it's the coalition of the bribed and the bullied and we've spent our moral bank account with which we've been able to lead much of the world, often against their immediate best interests, for the past five decades.

There were no WMD. So Bush changes to "WMD capability", in which case there are dozens of countries in the world that fit the bill. Hell, some WMD can be made in a single modest laboratory without any national support whatsoever.

No WMD, no link to terrorism, and immersion in a swamp for which there's no clear way out. A U.S. general the other day that the Iraqi insurgents hadn't won any engagement at platoon level or higher. What a horrible standard. We're producing insurgents faster than we're killing them. This is fast cycling to a war of body counts, just like Vietnam. Only I'll bet you a stack of $100 bills that there's no attempt to deal with Falloujah, Ramadi, or Sadr City until *after* the election...the pictures and the body count won't be pretty.

And then there's you, FundingFather. I leave and come back nine days later and find you the same parasite as when I left. Someone making no contribution besides being a figurative--or perhaps literal--arm of the GOP operations, spinning, spinning, spinning on a message board, as often as 17 messages per day in just one thread, while otherwise being a cipher. Yes, I mock you, little man. I mock you for having nothing better to do but make this your full-time contribution to your candidate's campaign. I mock you for being a parasitical cipher on this board, contributing nothing but using it for your own ends...the Republican notion of free enterprise, I guess.

By Browninfall (Browninfall) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 05:08 pm: Edit

The meltdown continues.

By Dstark (Dstark) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 05:37 pm: Edit

Thedad, I enjoyed reading your post.
I like reading nonfiction.

By Enjoyingthis (Enjoyingthis) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 05:40 pm: Edit

TheDad-- I'm with you on the subject of Bush! As is my whole family. What a relief that the sign our daughter's roommate had already put up in their lovely bay window by the time we arrived was for Kerry!

By Fundingfather (Fundingfather) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 07:01 pm: Edit

Thedad: I guess the trip wasn't too successful - you came back just as nasty as you left. I guess the double digit lead by Bush has you just a tad nervous. It's a good thing that you have ties with CC, because posts like yours have resulted in people being banned around here for regular folk.

No link to terrorism, huh? Well then why did your guy just yesterday say that the 1,000 soldiers who gave their lives did so in the fight against terrorism. Maybe you haven't had a chance to catch up the latest talking points. Of course, those were yesterday's talking points so who knows what today brings.

By Socalnick (Socalnick) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 07:52 pm: Edit

thedad I'd like to know where you are getting your information. It looks to me some of it is skewed.

By Eyesclozedtight (Eyesclozedtight) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 08:11 pm: Edit

nice comeback, fundingfather...

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 08:24 pm: Edit

This is too ugly to continue. Why bother when it gets reduced to personal attacks on people for simply expressing their beliefs? The anger is palpable. When someone is willing to write the above to a stranger, what else are they willing to do? I hope Bush/Kerry/next person dumb enough to want to lead this crazy country can do something about the divide, though I seriously doubt it. Meanwhile, my winter home in Mexico calls, they are happier there as the winner so far of NAFTA. Actually any country, even Isreal, would seem a bit happier right now.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 09:05 pm: Edit

Yes, Mom101, this is ugly. It gets ugly when people lie and mislead and then duck when facts are brought into play. It's ugly when people twist and blur issues such as Iraq and terrorism and try to hide behind the flag, indignantly suggesting that people aren't patriotic if they question the president, his actions, or his assumptions. It's ugly when people rest economic policy on the basis of privilege and self-entitlement. And frankly your OP suggesting that there was something wrong or hypocritical about the wealth of Kerry and his wife was pretty ugly too.

But you're right about the anger. I've spent most of my life as a moderate, bridging the gap between Dems and a fair number of Republicans. No more.
This is the worst president we've had in my lifetime with some of the sleaziest political manipulations I've ever seen and I'm not going to sit still for it.

As for FundingFather, my trip was very successful, thank you. But I don't need any daily talking points for my posts. But I'm also not a cybertroll, as you constantly ignore.

To my knowledge, I'm the poster with the second-longest history currently posting on these boards. I've made more than 20,000 posts, of which more than 98 percent are completely non-political. I don't claim to be the most helpful poster on the board...I'd direct those honors to people like Carolyn, Marite, and Northstarmom. But I've aided dozens of students and dozens of parents. You've done jack.

You cybertroll for the political topics and act like Karl Rove's instant response team. I've debated some good people on this board, like Xiggi, who ha so impressed me that I helped him with an internship. The contrast between the two of you should be instructive.

By Fundingfather (Fundingfather) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 09:16 pm: Edit

It gets ugly when people lie and mislead and then duck when facts are brought into play

Perhaps rather than the personal attacks, you could lend more to the honest political discourse by pointing out where my facts or opinions are wrong. If you peruse this thread, you will see that Dstark and I clearly don't agree on political issues, but at least we dealt with facts and he didn't resort to name calling. He learned something and so did I based on our exchange. Your pit bull attitude does very little to persuade me that you have an open mind about much of anything.

PS Can you point out where I or for that matter someone from the Republican party has challenged Kerry's patriotism? You and your Dem buddies get very confused about the difference between challenging one's record and challenging one's patriotism.

By Browninfall (Browninfall) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 09:44 pm: Edit


You've got to toughen up and stop being such a wimp. We on the right are used to the attacks. Quite frankly I think that it's made us stronger. You folks on the left can't take a hit at all. You've gone soft because Dan Rather et al kiss your fanny all the time. We're tough. We're used to getting smeared. Grow up, man. If W loses in November, we'll suck it up and take it like a man (hope that doesn't offend you sensitive types). You guys, on the other hand, are going to have a heart attack if Major Frank Burns loses.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 10:22 pm: Edit

SoCalNick, you can probably Google any number of articles that show roughly the same thing. I did a compilation and I'd have to back check to find the citation. Otoh, I've heard numbers that closely agree on many of the points several times from different sources.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 11:01 pm: Edit

I think we need to start a thred on the Anger in America today. There is no doubt in my mind that those who have the time, and take the trouble to opine about the tax cuts in the top 5% being responsible for so much division, are suffering in a way they did not expect to. Just listen to the hate and anger--there is a belief among many that not giving a tax break to the top 5% would have made the economy better! The deficit would have been much lower! Will we get a grip?

By Browninfall (Browninfall) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 11:41 pm: Edit

Mom101: Good luck with your son/daughter at St. Paul's. As I've said before, it's an amazing place. We're off to Deerfield in the morning. Son is excited, but we're a little tearful. He's our youngest. Isn't it incredible but even Republicans have a soft spot.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 12:17 am: Edit

Browninfall, thanks. Are the Republicans more in touch with their mature children's needs? I keep wondeing why I'm not weeping. Drop off day is Friday. My daughter has stopped reading, declaring that she wants to spend quality time with me. But I'm tearful, too. What lucky kids, off on the mot incredible of adventures!

By Browninfall (Browninfall) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 12:27 am: Edit

I just finished playing ping pong with my son for the thousandth time in the last few days. I'm not weeping but his mother is. We've had youngest daughter start as a freshman at Brown last Wednesday and moved oldest daughter to Chicago over the weekend. Life is good....no it's not....we already miss them dearly.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 06:32 pm: Edit

FundingFather, Kerry is not attacked by name. But the stump speeches have common threads: criticizing Bush's action, criticizing US policy in Iraq, etc. is not supporting our troops...with all the implications of disloyalty that that implies. And then there's Bush's disingenuous statements honoring Kerry's service while refusing to distance himself from the odious Swift Boat Liars ads. As for honest poltical discourse, I've posted numerous citations which you've repeatedly ignored. In fact, in terms of putting up "hard" citations, numeric and otherwise, I've put up more of a target for discussion than anyone else in these threads...I understand why, it takes too much bloody time to do it. But without doing so, it becomes dueling generalities with the Bushies retreating to the simple-minded bleating about Iraq=terrorism, etc.

And then there's your presence here, an issue you constantly ignore. You found this site--probably by Googling--and contribute nothing here but your 24/7 responses regarding Bush and Kerry. This "Cafe" is meant for members of the CC community to discuss things that don't fit in the "regular" fora. You cybertrolling here is as icky as if you insinuated yourself into any other message board not devoted to politics--be it sports, literature, or religion--and intruded upon a discussion between long-time members of the group; indeed, it's as if you came up into a discussion in the church parking lot just to stick your two cents in and then stick around. You can be a parasitic cybertroll if you wish but I'm going to call you on it.

The difference between you and Mom101 is that while she may stop just short of saying "let them eat cake", engage is some ugly rhetorical framing, and make self-privileging posts that reek of entitlement, her participation on this board has *earned* her the right to be here.

Mom101, I guess it's easy to be complacent when you're the one raking in the goodies. Fwiw, my clientele is mostly from top 5/top 10 percent households and I do better when they do better. And yet I would give away half of my next year's income--tuition bills looming and all--to see Bush defeated.

Yes, I'm angry. I'm angry about the cost of blood, money, political capital, and national moral force being squandered in Iraq, a sideshow in the war on terrorism.

I'm angry about the class warfare practiced by this president, whose tax and spending policies outrage my sense of justice and outrage many who take the time to understand them. (Many just hear that everyone gets something and nod and figure it's okay. My city ranges from $3.5 million dollar homes to renters in mobile home parks. Average single-family home price is about $1.4 million. Bush got 21 percent of the vote here in 2000, I doubt he'll do that well this time. Many of your economic peers here see Bush as being as much of a disaster as I do.)

I'm angry about a president whose social polices cater to the would-be ayahtollahs of the Religious Right.

I'm angry about quasi-religious criteria being used for scientific and judicial appointments.

I'm angry about the stealth gutting of environmental and labor regulations to the consistent favor of business interests.

If this doesn't make sense to you, then instead of starting a thread about Anger, start one about Cluelessness. I'm sure you'll enjoy your winter in Mexico: a compliant and subservient labor force to cater to you without much in the annoying regulations...why, I bet you can teach them to tug their forelocks.

Enjoyingthis, yes, my D was relieved that her roommate was pro-Kerry as well.

Browinfall, smearing is the Republican's game and it isn't recent. From Lee Atwater to Karl Rove, you guys have refined it to an art. But we can take a punch and give it back. Enjoy the poll numbers while they last...this is Bush's highwater mark.

By Socalnick (Socalnick) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:46 pm: Edit

how come some people think that tax breaks for businesses for bad yet they critisize the president for the bad job market. the more businesses are taxed the less money they have to hire more workers and increase wages. many people are holding bush to a double standard when it comes to tax breaks and the econimy it seems like.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:47 pm: Edit

Thedad, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for defending my right to post here! You are doing a great job of policing this board and determing who has a right to be here. Why should clueless people (as definded by not agreeing with you)even be allowed to live in this Country? You should make that your next mission after you clean up this board.

Oh, and let them eat cake! Like all Republicans I just don't understand why everyone is not just eating cake! That's what we do here in the manse when not counting all the money W saved us and beating the servants (who are underpaid and get no benefits.

But I do worry about all of your admitted anger. That kind of anger leads to serious disease. Destress and stay well.

By Mezzomom (Mezzomom) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:12 am: Edit

Mom101: I don't necessarily agree with the tone of Thedad's posts, but I certainly understand the anger, because I share it. I started out as a young liberal who became more centrist with age, which I consider to be a fairly normal progression. I now find myself in the odd position of swinging back to the Left because of this president.

Discussion of economic theory and who creates jobs (or not) is all well and good, but the anger doesn't derive from those types of issues. The anger, in my case at least, is a direct result of the "moral certainty" of Bush and the resulting effect on foreign policy. The doctrine of pre-emptive war is short-sighted, dangerous, and without precedent in American history. The president seems destined to commit our troops to one incursion after another (if he is truly sincere about his war on terrorism), based on a moral vision which allows for little or no diplomacy. Moral issues aside, the pure economics of such a policy are already proving to be frightening. When Alan Greenspan is warning about the deficit, shouldn't somebody be listening?

I am angry as a direct result of the personal attacks I have had to endure in my little hometown because I do not believe the war in Iraq was an appropriate response to the 9/11 attacks. (I fully expect that I will now be attacked on this forum too.) It confounds me that our greatest national tragedy has become a rationale for considering (or implying) dissent to be unpatriotic, that the Bill of Rights should be abridged by some of the clauses of the PATRIOT Act, and that rule of law (whether civil or military) need not be closely observed when dealing with "them."

It angers me that the president uses his religious conviction as a selling point to the far right, yet seems unable to take such a simple action as specifically denouncing the attack ads of the Swift Boat folks; considered gay marriage an issue for each state (when he was governor and apparently just as "religious") but now wants a constitutional amendment prohibiting it; and surrounds himself with people like Karl Rove, who have a track record of engaging in dirty politics through the use of cut-outs (or should I say "through outsourcing"?)

Please don't worry about my health as you have Thedad's. I don't enjoy the anger, but I am working to exorcise it through political action. Worry instead for the historical, economic, and political legacy we are leaving for our children.

By Socalnick (Socalnick) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:22 am: Edit

"The doctrine of pre-emptive war is short-sighted, dangerous, and without precedent in American history"

If we had an idea that hitler was as bad as he was we probably would have went to war with germany earlier. Many physocoligst have compared hitler to sadam and there are many simmilarites.

Also although I dissagre with the presidents stance on abortion, many people fell just as strongly aginst it as some are for it. At least the president is going with what he beleives in athough he may not be right.

By Valpal (Valpal) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:28 am: Edit

Don't get me wrong, I have NO love for G.W. Bush, but I often wonder why there is no mandate for Kerry to denounce Michael Moore's blatant manipulation of the facts in F9/11, while demanding that Bush specifically condemn the Swift Boat propaganda. I find the double standard odious.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:30 am: Edit

Mezzomom, I enjoyed your post because after a summer in Northern California, NYC and Boston, I've not run into many of the 52% of American's who approve of Bush.

I'm no lover of many of his stands or his religious defense. I just have a hard time with the extreme anger and accusations of cluelessness. What scares me as far as what we are doing to the kids are the parents who express relief that the sign in their child's dorm room, thank god, expresses their views. My daughter gets dropped off at John Kerry's very liberal leaning high school tomorrow, and I couldn't be happier that she will get the exposure to views different than what she hears at home. How else to learn objectivity and tolerance?

By Patient (Patient) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 01:13 pm: Edit

I applaud Thedad's post and want him to know that his views are shared by many here. But then he probably already knows that. I had to post this in support of him, and other beloved posters such as Enjoyingthis and Garland, even though my own personal approach to these truly offensive posters (Noodleman has it right) is generally described as follows:

"Extinction is the withdrawal of all attention after a child (person) engages in an undesirable behavior. (It is a tough method to use at first and bystanders may be shocked if they aren't prepared.) Children (People) live for attention and they love exaggerated emotional responses. Attention is stimulation. Whether that attention is good or bad, it is stimulating and they like it. The idea behind Extinction is that you do not reinforce undesirable behavior by giving the child(person) a reward for their bad behaviors -- the reward being attention and an exaggerated emotional response."

By Mlee (Mlee) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 02:03 pm: Edit

Quote: "My daughter gets dropped off at John Kerry's very liberal leaning high school tomorrow, and I couldn't be happier that she will get the exposure to views different than what she hears at home. How else to learn objectivity and tolerance?"

It will be good if Mom101's daughter learns the objectivity and tolerance that she could not learn at home.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 02:36 pm: Edit

How original and witty!

By Xdad (Xdad) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 02:48 pm: Edit

This whole thread is quite scary. To an outsider, it seems that a large number of posters ought to check the dictionary for the definitions of objectivity and tolerance, and not trying to emulate T. Heinz's version of tolerance. For instance, with its veiled attempt at questioning one's parental abilities, the post by Mlee deserves nothing but contempt and derision. Shame on you!

Obviously, the same people who cheered -or jumped around the kitchen- while listening to Heinz speech at the DNC convention, probably applaud bullying and loudmouth tactics, as long as they fit the appropriate partisan ideology.

While I have not earned my stripes -and right to post in this forum, I have read enough posts on CC to unequivocably know that TheDad deserves my respect for his contributions.

However, in my opinion, few of the named bandwagon jumpers deserve the same credit and respect. And as they say where I come from " Empty barrels do make the most noise".

By Patient (Patient) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 03:00 pm: Edit

Mlee...you took the words right out of my mouth (computer).

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 03:31 pm: Edit

The irony is beyond words.

By Hayden (Hayden) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 06:52 pm: Edit

The fear we had that an evil doer had nuclear weapons and posed a direct threat to our country - wasn't that the same fear we had of the Soviet Union? We didn't preemptively go to war with the USSR, and somehow we survived.

Pre-emptive war is, and always has been, a moral wrong unless and until we believe the attack is imminent. The good guys are stuck with having the bad guys go for their guns first. It's what makes us the good guys.

If we truly believed in pre-emptive war, we would have already had nuclear war with the USSR, Libya, China, and how many others.

And now we, having suffered the loss of so many on 9/11, have lost 1,000 more. And we're no safer.

By Patient (Patient) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 07:51 pm: Edit

Xdad: I will tell you that your son Xiggi is a conservative whose knowledge and ability to engage in reasoned, dispassionate discourse surpass any of ours. If he learned at your knee, then you too surpass us.

In our house, there are three voting members: a Republican, a Democrat, and an independent who knows how to play both sides of the parental fence (kidding--who listens and reads and thinks and votes without a clear party affiliation). And two non-voters, one of whom is a stronger Democrat than the parent and one whose views are unknown at this point. Each of us as parents has voted for individuals of the other party on occasion. I listen to the people interviewed across the country on NPR, and I hear really thoughtful people supporting both candidates.

For some reason the discussions on quasi-anonymous message boards get much more heated than I think they would in person. It's unfortunate and it's why I don't read or participate in them except for once in a blue moon.

I hope your son is happy in college.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 08:02 pm: Edit

Xdad, didn't realize you were Xiggi's dad. Any parenting tips will be appreciated. He shares your fright at what appears here. He emailed me earlier in the week to say so. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree...

By Lizschup (Lizschup) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 11:03 pm: Edit

There are far more frightening things in the world than what appears on this thread. The War in Iraq comes to mind. A President of the United States who doesn't have a curious bone in his body and who doesn't read the newspaper- that's truly scary.

By Socalnick (Socalnick) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 02:18 am: Edit

i dont think it would be very efficent if the president got his news from the new york times

By Thermodude (Thermodude) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 04:20 pm: Edit

I know this post I am making is a little off topic now, but I was reading the earlier portions of the thread. I was bothered by Mom101's attitude towards those who did not make it into HYPS. Indeed, not all intelligent + hardworking students make it into HYPS. One of my good friends had a 1550 SAT, 800/800/760 for SAT II's, was president of honor society along with numerous other EC's, was rejected by Stanford while his friend who had a 1490 SAT and practically no EC's got into Stanford mainly because of his legacy. Another individual had a perfect 1600, perfect 800/800/800 for his SAT II's and was also rejected. Now, I understand why colleges consider legacy for admissions, as it is important for financial reasons. Additionally, I understand that in recent years, admissions into HYPS has become much more competative, so 1600's are sometimes rejected just because they aren't the best applicants. However, Mom101's attitude about the quality of applicants who are rejected by HPYS does bother me. I personally know several hardworkers who never "partied" in highschool and had 1500+ SAT's + good EC's that were rejected by top tier schools in the nation.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 07:44 pm: Edit

That's not at all what I said. Of course many qualified students don't get into many top colleges. The majority applying to HYP don't--very basic, well know fact.

By Shortcakefairy (Shortcakefairy) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 08:12 pm: Edit

All i have to say about Kerry is this:

If he ever forces me to drive a hybrid or other fuel-efficient car

he better give up his private jets.

UGH i can't stand him! and i HATE how teresa heinz kerry pretends to be all passionate about the environment, when she probably wastes more energy and contributes to more waste than most average Americans. TWO private planes, FIVE mansions...i mean COME ON!!!

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