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> Obama on wealth redistribution, another unscripted moment
Blackstone
post Oct 31 2008, 05:17 PM
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Here is an audio transcript of an interview that Barack Obama gave in 2001. He was talking about the civil rights movement, what it accomplished, and what it failed to accomplish. What he said it failed to accomplish - "tragically", in his view - was significant redistribution of wealth. There's one passage that I think deserves particular examination, which will be the subject of the debate questions:

QUOTE(Barack Obama)
Maybe Iím showing my bias here as a legislator as well as a law professor, but Iím not optimistic about bringing about major redistributive change through the courts. The institution just isnít structured that way. You just look at very rare examples during the desegregation era the court was willing to for example order changes that cost money to a local school district. The court was very uncomfortable with it. It was very hard to manage, it was hard to figure out. You start getting into all sorts of separation of powers issues in terms of the court monitoring or engaging in a process that essentially is administrative and takes a lot of time. The courtís just not very good at it and politically itís very hard to legitimize opinions from the court in that regard. So I think that although you can craft theoretical justifications for it legally. Any three of us sitting here could come up with a rationale for bringing about economic change through the courts.


1. Looking at the above passage, would you conclude that Senator Obama was taking a principled stand against judicially-imposed redistribution of wealth, or that he was merely objecting to the strategy on practical grounds?

2. Would those practical considerations likely change if he were in a position to nominate judges for the Supreme Court, and send those nominations to a filibuster-proof Democratic-controlled Senate?

3. Does this interview, and perhaps other revelations from his days in Chicago/Illinois politics, add to the feeling that there's a lot we really don't know about Senator Obama and his agenda?
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Amlord
post Oct 31 2008, 05:39 PM
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1. Looking at the above passage, would you conclude that Senator Obama was taking a principled stand against judicially-imposed redistribution of wealth, or that he was merely objecting to the strategy on practical grounds?

"The institution just isnít structured that way." He seems to dismiss the Supreme Court as the wrong agent. I think he realized that distribution occurs on the Legislative and Executive levels much more than the Court level.

Social Security--legislative pushed by the Executive.
Medicare -- ditto.
Medicaid -- ditto.

Means tested education grants will also occur this way as will socialized healthcare if we turn to the left in this election.

These, however, can all be viewed as "everyone contributes, everyone benefits" types of programs which are only mildly socialist. When you contribute to a program and gain no benefit, that's when you get into real socialism, sorry "redistribution".

2. Would those practical considerations likely change if he were in a position to nominate judges for the Supreme Court, and send those nominations to a filibuster-proof Democratic-controlled Senate?

Well, the Court is an institution of its Justices. A more left-leaning Court could become an institution that IS structured that way, as it has in some state Supreme Courts.

3. Does this interview, and perhaps other revelations from his days in Chicago/Illinois politics, add to the feeling that there's a lot we really don't know about Senator Obama and his agenda?

A comment I heard from Obama yesterday struck me.

He said we are five days from "fundamentally changing America". What's so wrong with it now? Sure it needs to be tweaked, but fundamentally changed? I hope not.

Also, what he said on the Daily Show yesterday gave me pause.

QUOTE
Jon Stewart: No, that's nice. Is there a sense that you have, you know, two years ago when you began this journey, the country was not necessarily in the shape it's in now. Is there a sense that you don't want this? (Obama laughs) you may look at the country and think, you know, when I thought I was going to get this it was a relatively new car. Now look at it!

Barack Obama: You know, I actually think this is the time to want to be president. If you went into public service thinking that you could have an impact, now is the time where you could have an impact. We tend to be a pretty conservative country. I don't mean conservative politically per se, but conservative in the sense that, you know, things are kind of going along pretty well and we don't want to mess with it too much. And then every once in a while you have these big challenges and big problems. It gives an opportunity for us to really move in a new direction. I think this is one of those moments on things like energy and health care and the economy and education where I think people recognize what we've been doing isn't working.

Jon Stewart: A serious moment.

Barack Obama: I think people will be more open to change.


I wonder what he will fundamentally change about this country and what opportunities to move us in a new direction he sees. He mentions some examples, but I think there is more there behind the scenes. He sees this as an opportunity to implement drastic changes. Couple this with Biden's statements that we won't agree with some of what Obama will do and it gives me pause.
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CruisingRam
post Oct 31 2008, 06:35 PM
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Amlord, after 28 years of failed conservative ideology, that was actually WORSE THAN THE TAX AND SPEND LIBERALS.

Lets be clear- I am NOT a proponent of tax and spend policies either.

But we NEED fundamental change in this country- over a variety of things- we have an out of control reverse socialism thing going on here, were we use far more money to prop up losing corporations, give massive goverment spending in a form of corporate welfare to the defense industry- and all the time, BORROWING the money- it wasn't even revenue that they obtained and then used to spend- they enriched CEO pockets, for no real benefit to the US, on a very, very high interest rate loan.

Now we are paying for the "deregulation" of the reagan-bush-bush-gingrich" ideology. 60 trillion dollars in outstanding, ready to default credit default swaps insurance "product"-

I don't see it as "redistribution" as "time for the rich to repay the loan"

I wish we could constitutionally tax just the ceos of major financial institution to repay what they have taken away from us.

I have not confirmed it, but I was watching some talking head talk about 239 billion dollars in CEO salaries for companies that are going under, bankrupt or needing bailout- and they WILL be paid before creditors and stockholders, and the loopholes under the "bailout" allows too many failed CEOs to collect that money.

I do think it unfortunate that we lump a doctors half =million a year salary into the same category as a Bear sterns con artist.

I would like to see taxes tailored to that entire industry and managers- they are responsible for a great many problems in this country, and they have suffered no sanctions at all- in fact, they have been handsomely rewarded.

It is NOT redistribution, it is justice, and it is about damn time the biggest parasites on our society are being taxed a reasonable amount, instead of being given a "justice' tax that lowers them to the welfare-brackets. It is NOT redistribution, it is time to make a payment or two on thier loan from the US taxpayer. mad.gif

As for Universal health care, I am hoping for a single payer universal insurance, so I can get out of that Ponzi scheme myself.

It is just good fiscal sense to get more for your money- so far, we spend the most, we get the least. I would rather we spend the least for the most, personally. Basic part of good business- you know, don't pay too much for too little. rolleyes.gif

Folks like Blackstone are siezing on any soundbit they can get- anything to "swiftboat" Obama.

The American voter has been gullible enough for it in the past, and I am sure, like in Alaska, were there is a fairly large amount of support for convicted on 7 felony counts Ted Stevens, there are people stupid and gullible enough to ACTUALLY BELIEVE the swiftboat liars back in 04.

But I think they have had thier nose rubbed in the incompetence and failure of conservative ideology for the last 28 years.

You hit someone hard enough in the face with a 2x4 of failed republican policies, soon they start to learn.

And the "redistribution of wealth" cry with the "OMG, he is communist" line that comes shortly afterword, well, it is a lie, of course.

The only thing that the new tax structure MAY bring is some form of justice, but not a "redistribution of wealth"

Heck, I would be satisfied with just forcing all banking executives that made the decision to sell or trade CDSs and the resultant losses, just make them pay them all back, with interest, with no limits on garnishments or bankruptcy protection- they get to keep nothing, not even the clothes on thier back if they are asked for.

The redistribution of wealth has been upward, not downward, for about 28 years. Time to push back a bit.
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aevans176
post Oct 31 2008, 07:34 PM
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QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Oct 31 2008, 12:35 PM) *
The redistribution of wealth has been upward, not downward, for about 28 years. Time to push back a bit.


Good job with the not using one factual piece of information in this post... the same ol' liberal "think with the heart" mentality that just might get the most unqualified President elected in American history.

The truth, CR, is that there have been years and years of Democratic congress, years of the Clinton Administration, years of bi-partisan legislation, etc. The very idea that you try to pin a recession and distribution of wealth on Reagan/Bush/Bush/Gingrich is probably the most ignorant idea I've ever seen.

You also make this ridiculous statement...
QUOTE
I do think it unfortunate that we lump a doctors half =million a year salary into the same category as a Bear sterns con artist.


I believe that it's absurd that Doctor's in the US make the money they do. Why do you believe they do? Well- because it's not a free market economy. There aren't alternatives, and the AMA dictates (in essence) the number of Doctors walking the streets.

In the real world the economy dictates how much executives make. The real world force behind wages is basically ... well... the real world.

In the United states, as this link shows (http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/wealth.html) the reality is that the last 25 years or so have had similar levels of wealth distribution. Are you saying that maybe Reagan sabotaged the American economy in the first couple years of his presidency? (rhetorical statement... don't reply)

While there is a large gap, it's basically been the same since the early 80's according to the graphs on the link.

People in the US truthfully get their information from the sound bites and sensationalist media. This is why Barack Obama is doing so well, other than him being black. (Funny enough... Tom Joyner has said on his radio show more than once "our candidate" specifically meaning the candidate of black people... and some black folks still believe that they're voting for him due to his political ideals!HA!)

This is 100% evident by this statement:
QUOTE
Now we are paying for the "deregulation" of the reagan-bush-bush-gingrich" ideology. 60 trillion dollars in outstanding, ready to default credit default swaps insurance "product"-


Seriously. Did the Bush and Reagan administrations cause this problem, or did bad business decisions? How many people made poor credit choices? How many Americans took mortgages when they shouldn't have, etc?

So... one question I should answer.
3. Does this interview, and perhaps other revelations from his days in Chicago/Illinois politics, add to the feeling that there's a lot we really don't know about Senator Obama and his agenda?

Let's be realistic. I've read as much as I can to try to like this guy. The reality is that he's one of the most liberal senators in the US. He's had a very short public service career with a short record that proves little. He's had very little foreign policy experience, and basically is an amateur.

Secondly, I'm really sick of the ignorant blame game in reference to "20 years of Republicans messing things up". How many times have we heard about the good things being pinned on the Clinton years, the Republicans being blamed for the state of the union, and the Democratic Congress never taking an ounce of blame? It's ridiculous. Seriously.

Finally, the economic situation in the US is largely home grown by Americans, not the government. We're a capitalist nation, so inherently the lion's share of blame can go to you, me, and everyone else. Poor decisions in the marketplace, in personal business, etc are the biggest- not the government- reason that we're in this pickle.

Democrats want us to believe that the gov't should've regulated this mess. Of course, many of them would like a UK-esque pseudo-socialism... and we see how well the UK is doing. Maybe some of you all want more true socialism. In either case, US capitalism is going to have ebbs and flows. We're on the down swing, which happens in our economy far less frequently and is far easier weathered than in other nations.
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CruisingRam
post Oct 31 2008, 07:43 PM
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Okay- reality check

S&L fiasco? 110% the fault of republicans- and deregulation fever- same thing we are having today, bigger scale

Bloated military spending budget ? Republican problem, again.

War with wrong country, and our outright destroying Americas image in the world? 110% republican blame.

The best Obama can hope for is a "push back".

There were three short years of Clinton-democrat rule, and man, what a great time it was, a little breathing room.

But now, after 6 years of total rule, we have seen the destruction they have done to this country.

They have destroyed our military readiness on needless wars, drained our countries resources, destroyed our economy, split our nation, tortured, expanded executive powers far beyond any nightmare thought possible.

WE could go Europe-left as a nation, and it would take a decade just to move back to a sane center. mad.gif

I want my money back from AIG, Boeing, Haliburton, Lehman, JP Chase morgan, Enron, Exxon, etc etc etc- all that wasted money on corporate salaries and perks, paid for courtesy of the American taxpayer.

Once we get our loan to them, let's talk "redistribution".

This post has been edited by CruisingRam: Oct 31 2008, 07:46 PM
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Blackstone
post Nov 1 2008, 05:58 PM
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QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Oct 31 2008, 03:43 PM) *
Okay- reality check

S&L fiasco? 110% the fault of republicans- and deregulation fever- same thing we are having today, bigger scale

You mean like the repeal of Glass-Steagall, which passed with overwhelming bipartisan support, and which is still defended by the Democrat who signed it into law?

Yep, thanks for that reality check. You really showed us.

QUOTE
War with wrong country, and our outright destroying Americas image in the world? 110% republican blame.

You might want to ask the Dems' VP candidate about that, seeing as how he and many of his copartisans voted for it.

By the way, here's a little weekend video entertainment for you.

QUOTE
I want my money back from AIG, Boeing, Haliburton, Lehman, JP Chase morgan, Enron, Exxon, etc etc etc- all that wasted money on corporate salaries and perks, paid for courtesy of the American taxpayer.

Once we get our loan to them, let's talk "redistribution".

It's not the superwealthy who'll suffer from Obama's plans to forcibly redistribute wealth. It will be all the people working hard to get wealthy. Ultimately it will be the entire economy that suffers, as success is repeatedly punished. Too bad some people can't see past their own blind hatred in order to understand that.


QUOTE(aevans176 @ Oct 31 2008, 03:34 PM) *
So... one question I should answer.
3. Does this interview, and perhaps other revelations from his days in Chicago/Illinois politics, add to the feeling that there's a lot we really don't know about Senator Obama and his agenda?

Let's be realistic. I've read as much as I can to try to like this guy. The reality is that he's one of the most liberal senators in the US. He's had a very short public service career with a short record that proves little. He's had very little foreign policy experience, and basically is an amateur.

It goes beyond that even. He does have a fairly long record prior to coming to Washington, but the record is mostly obscured. And every little snippet we get of it is something jarring, and very much in contrast with his carefully crafted public image.

One fascinating thing about him is that at his nominating convention, not a single close associate from his Chicago days (well, other than his wife) was willing to stand up and be a character witness for him. Contrast that with 2004, when John Kerry had a whole phalanx of Vietnam vets he'd served with testifying as to his readiness to lead.

Are all of Obama's Chicago friends that disreputable that he's ashamed to have them show their faces?
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Bikerdad
post Nov 1 2008, 07:01 PM
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1. Looking at the above passage, would you conclude that Senator Obama was taking a principled stand against judicially-imposed redistribution of wealth, or that he was merely objecting to the strategy on practical grounds?
Practical grounds, but only in the sense that he doesn't think the courts can successfully manage such a mandate.

2. Would those practical considerations likely change if he were in a position to nominate judges for the Supreme Court, and send those nominations to a filibuster-proof Democratic-controlled Senate?
No. He'd simply feel much more confident that his unconstitutional schemes for wealth redistribution will be approved by SCOTUS.

3. Does this interview, and perhaps other revelations from his days in Chicago/Illinois politics, add to the feeling that there's a lot we really don't know about Senator Obama and his agenda? Not really. That this interview is only coming out now simply reinforces the certainty that the MSM has done their best to ignore and obscure his agenda. Those who have decided to take a critical look at it have been able to figure it out. Some are okay with it, some aren't.
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CruisingRam
post Nov 1 2008, 07:14 PM
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QUOTE(Bikerdad @ Nov 1 2008, 11:01 AM) *
1. Looking at the above passage, would you conclude that Senator Obama was taking a principled stand against judicially-imposed redistribution of wealth, or that he was merely objecting to the strategy on practical grounds?
Practical grounds, but only in the sense that he doesn't think the courts can successfully manage such a mandate.

2. Would those practical considerations likely change if he were in a position to nominate judges for the Supreme Court, and send those nominations to a filibuster-proof Democratic-controlled Senate?
No. He'd simply feel much more confident that his unconstitutional schemes for wealth redistribution will be approved by SCOTUS.

3. Does this interview, and perhaps other revelations from his days in Chicago/Illinois politics, add to the feeling that there's a lot we really don't know about Senator Obama and his agenda? Not really. That this interview is only coming out now simply reinforces the certainty that the MSM has done their best to ignore and obscure his agenda. Those who have decided to take a critical look at it have been able to figure it out. Some are okay with it, some aren't.


How do you figure it as a "redistribution of income" when it will take a generation just to get paid back from the bailouts of the banking industry alone BD? So far, the "redistribution" is clearly going one way- upward.

If we were to bankrupt every CEO in this country, it wouldn't come close to the amount of money we have already givent them.

How much of the 700 billion dollars that we are giving to the banking industry counts as 'redistribution of income"- for the rich though?
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Bikerdad
post Nov 1 2008, 07:52 PM
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QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 02:14 PM) *
How do you figure it as a "redistribution of income" when it will take a generation just to get paid back from the bailouts of the banking industry alone BD? So far, the "redistribution" is clearly going one way- upward.


Redistribution of income can go either way. Obama is talking about it going from the rich to the poor. The topic is Obama's plan for wealth redistribution. Progressive taxation (i.e. rich pay more than the poor) with increased social welfare (poor getting more than the rich) equals wealth redistribution.

QUOTE
If we were to bankrupt every CEO in this country, it wouldn't come close to the amount of money we have already givent them.
If we we're to bankrupt every CEO in this country, we would bankrupt the country. The corner 7-Eleven, owned by a franchisee? That has a CEO. Your barbershop? It has a CEO. Galloping Gerties Cafe? It has a CEO. Ditto for where you get your autoparts, your groceries, clothes, etc. Union's have CEOs, the ACLU has a CEO, etc. I'm only pointing this out in hopes that somebody else will understand the basic lesson. I have no such hope for you, as your pathological hatred for business provides you a shield of inpenetrable ignorance on economic matters.
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CruisingRam
post Nov 1 2008, 08:07 PM
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QUOTE(Bikerdad @ Nov 1 2008, 11:52 AM) *
QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 02:14 PM) *
How do you figure it as a "redistribution of income" when it will take a generation just to get paid back from the bailouts of the banking industry alone BD? So far, the "redistribution" is clearly going one way- upward.


Redistribution of income can go either way. Obama is talking about it going from the rich to the poor. The topic is Obama's plan for wealth redistribution. Progressive taxation (i.e. rich pay more than the poor) with increased social welfare (poor getting more than the rich) equals wealth redistribution.

QUOTE
If we were to bankrupt every CEO in this country, it wouldn't come close to the amount of money we have already givent them.
If we we're to bankrupt every CEO in this country, we would bankrupt the country. The corner 7-Eleven, owned by a franchisee? That has a CEO. Your barbershop? It has a CEO. Galloping Gerties Cafe? It has a CEO. Ditto for where you get your autoparts, your groceries, clothes, etc. Union's have CEOs, the ACLU has a CEO, etc. I'm only pointing this out in hopes that somebody else will understand the basic lesson. I have no such hope for you, as your pathological hatred for business provides you a shield of inpenetrable ignorance on economic matters.




I was specific, I believe, to failed industries needing bailouts.

I have nothing but respect for succesful, well managed companies. Some are badly managed, but too big to fail, and despite the beaurocracy and bad behaviors, small business can't compete from the shere size of the corporations.

What I have a "pathological hatred" for is rewarding, over and over again, with taxpayer money, CEOs that run thier companies into the ground, and recieve no sanctions for this- they are protected from lawsuits, and protected from any kind of negative reinforcement for thier behaviors.

The wealth has been redistributted so heavily upward, I don't consider a downward redistribution to be "redistribution" at all-but rather, a loan payment come due or a time for payback.

As long as a CEO is succesful, and isn't running the company into the ground, he should get paid all the market will bear. If his company is getting a bailout, he should have to pay 110% of all his life earnings until the debt has been satisfied.

This post has been edited by CruisingRam: Nov 1 2008, 08:08 PM
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Blackstone
post Nov 1 2008, 08:36 PM
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QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 03:07 PM) *
As long as a CEO is succesful, and isn't running the company into the ground, he should get paid all the market will bear. If his company is getting a bailout, he should have to pay 110% of all his life earnings until the debt has been satisfied.

That's all fine and dandy, but it has absolutely nothing to do with Obama's redistributionist agenda. It's not about failing CEO's. It's about punishing anyone who's successful. All this other stuff is completely beside the point.

As it is, he and his team keep defining "rich" downward. What makes you think this has anything to do with going after CEO's of failing businesses?
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barnaby2341
post Nov 1 2008, 08:57 PM
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QUOTE(Blackstone @ Nov 1 2008, 03:36 PM) *
QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 03:07 PM) *
As long as a CEO is succesful, and isn't running the company into the ground, he should get paid all the market will bear. If his company is getting a bailout, he should have to pay 110% of all his life earnings until the debt has been satisfied.

That's all fine and dandy, but it has absolutely nothing to do with Obama's redistributionist agenda. It's not about failing CEO's. It's about punishing anyone who's successful. All this other stuff is completely beside the point.

As it is, he and his team keep defining "rich" downward. What makes you think this has anything to do with going after CEO's of failing businesses?

It's just a simple math problem Blackstone. If the worker doesn't have enough money to buy anything, the business owner won't be selling anything and thus the worker and the business owner will be out of a job. Both the worker and the owner have a stake in the success of the business.

Besides, you do not make $250,000 anyway, so why do you even care? As a matter of fact, you're never going to make anywhere close to $250,000 a year. NEVER! So you won't have increased taxes and Obama's tax plan will make you more money than McCain's.
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CruisingRam
post Nov 1 2008, 10:16 PM
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QUOTE(barnaby2341 @ Nov 1 2008, 12:57 PM) *
QUOTE(Blackstone @ Nov 1 2008, 03:36 PM) *
QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 03:07 PM) *
As long as a CEO is succesful, and isn't running the company into the ground, he should get paid all the market will bear. If his company is getting a bailout, he should have to pay 110% of all his life earnings until the debt has been satisfied.

That's all fine and dandy, but it has absolutely nothing to do with Obama's redistributionist agenda. It's not about failing CEO's. It's about punishing anyone who's successful. All this other stuff is completely beside the point.

As it is, he and his team keep defining "rich" downward. What makes you think this has anything to do with going after CEO's of failing businesses?

It's just a simple math problem Blackstone. If the worker doesn't have enough money to buy anything, the business owner won't be selling anything and thus the worker and the business owner will be out of a job. Both the worker and the owner have a stake in the success of the business.

Besides, you do not make $250,000 anyway, so why do you even care? As a matter of fact, you're never going to make anywhere close to $250,000 a year. NEVER! So you won't have increased taxes and Obama's tax plan will make you more money than McCain's.



Actually Barnaby, I indeed hope my business can take off and make me 250k a year- net- and it isn't too long of a shot for just that to happen- my business is doing BETTER under adverse economical conditions rather than worse- I own mostly low to middle income housing complexes- though that is a bit of a "brag"- considering it is three buildings, and not that many units- but it does make me a fair amount of walking around cash- enough to re-invest in my motorcycle business.

This is where an Obama presidency and dem congress/house COULD help me out a bunch. If we get some sort of single payer or universal health care, my bike business would blow up, big time, just based on the work I turn away now, because I can't afford to pay for health care for my employees. And they can't afford to work without it- even though I offer higher actual pay.

I think "job lock" is the #1 hinderance to the backbone of growth in America- the small businessman, as defined as a business with under 100 employees.

Based on business I currently turn away- I can employ 5 full time, highly skilled workers, and 2 minimum wage "shop go-fers" (read:eager industrious teenager after school and summer job) - I can afford all the other costs of doing business, but my potential employees simply have to stay at jobs they hate that do not use thier talents to thier fullest simply to maintain health insurance (I can afford 401ks for my employees as well, just not health insurance, at 1200 a month a pop per employee) -

we are simply NOT using our work force efficiently by locking them into corporate jobs they hate just to keep thier families on health care.

Obama's corporate tax structure and personal income tax structure, as defined, won't even put a dent in my bottom line, in fact, I would shake his hand and give him a campaign contribution if I get to the point that I make 250k a year, net. thumbsup.gif

This post has been edited by CruisingRam: Nov 1 2008, 10:19 PM
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barnaby2341
post Nov 1 2008, 11:06 PM
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QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 05:16 PM) *
QUOTE(barnaby2341 @ Nov 1 2008, 12:57 PM) *
QUOTE(Blackstone @ Nov 1 2008, 03:36 PM) *
QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 03:07 PM) *
As long as a CEO is succesful, and isn't running the company into the ground, he should get paid all the market will bear. If his company is getting a bailout, he should have to pay 110% of all his life earnings until the debt has been satisfied.

That's all fine and dandy, but it has absolutely nothing to do with Obama's redistributionist agenda. It's not about failing CEO's. It's about punishing anyone who's successful. All this other stuff is completely beside the point.

As it is, he and his team keep defining "rich" downward. What makes you think this has anything to do with going after CEO's of failing businesses?

It's just a simple math problem Blackstone. If the worker doesn't have enough money to buy anything, the business owner won't be selling anything and thus the worker and the business owner will be out of a job. Both the worker and the owner have a stake in the success of the business.

Besides, you do not make $250,000 anyway, so why do you even care? As a matter of fact, you're never going to make anywhere close to $250,000 a year. NEVER! So you won't have increased taxes and Obama's tax plan will make you more money than McCain's.



Actually Barnaby, I indeed hope my business can take off and make me 250k a year- net- and it isn't too long of a shot for just that to happen- my business is doing BETTER under adverse economical conditions rather than worse- I own mostly low to middle income housing complexes- though that is a bit of a "brag"- considering it is three buildings, and not that many units- but it does make me a fair amount of walking around cash- enough to re-invest in my motorcycle business.

This is where an Obama presidency and dem congress/house COULD help me out a bunch. If we get some sort of single payer or universal health care, my bike business would blow up, big time, just based on the work I turn away now, because I can't afford to pay for health care for my employees. And they can't afford to work without it- even though I offer higher actual pay.

I think "job lock" is the #1 hinderance to the backbone of growth in America- the small businessman, as defined as a business with under 100 employees.

Based on business I currently turn away- I can employ 5 full time, highly skilled workers, and 2 minimum wage "shop go-fers" (read:eager industrious teenager after school and summer job) - I can afford all the other costs of doing business, but my potential employees simply have to stay at jobs they hate that do not use thier talents to thier fullest simply to maintain health insurance (I can afford 401ks for my employees as well, just not health insurance, at 1200 a month a pop per employee) -

we are simply NOT using our work force efficiently by locking them into corporate jobs they hate just to keep thier families on health care.

Obama's corporate tax structure and personal income tax structure, as defined, won't even put a dent in my bottom line, in fact, I would shake his hand and give him a campaign contribution if I get to the point that I make 250k a year, net. thumbsup.gif

CruisingRam, we are all well aware of your impressive resume. If there's one thing you do well on this board, it's talk about yourself. However, you were not being addressed, Blackstone was, but thank you anyway for another segment of "I Love Me Some Me." Also, keep in mind that you are hoping to make $250K, and in order to do so your business needs to "take off."

The American Dream is just that, a dream. Nighty, night. sleeping.gif
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CruisingRam
post Nov 1 2008, 11:49 PM
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QUOTE(barnaby2341 @ Nov 1 2008, 03:06 PM) *
QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 05:16 PM) *
QUOTE(barnaby2341 @ Nov 1 2008, 12:57 PM) *
QUOTE(Blackstone @ Nov 1 2008, 03:36 PM) *
QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 03:07 PM) *
As long as a CEO is succesful, and isn't running the company into the ground, he should get paid all the market will bear. If his company is getting a bailout, he should have to pay 110% of all his life earnings until the debt has been satisfied.

That's all fine and dandy, but it has absolutely nothing to do with Obama's redistributionist agenda. It's not about failing CEO's. It's about punishing anyone who's successful. All this other stuff is completely beside the point.

As it is, he and his team keep defining "rich" downward. What makes you think this has anything to do with going after CEO's of failing businesses?

It's just a simple math problem Blackstone. If the worker doesn't have enough money to buy anything, the business owner won't be selling anything and thus the worker and the business owner will be out of a job. Both the worker and the owner have a stake in the success of the business.

Besides, you do not make $250,000 anyway, so why do you even care? As a matter of fact, you're never going to make anywhere close to $250,000 a year. NEVER! So you won't have increased taxes and Obama's tax plan will make you more money than McCain's.



Actually Barnaby, I indeed hope my business can take off and make me 250k a year- net- and it isn't too long of a shot for just that to happen- my business is doing BETTER under adverse economical conditions rather than worse- I own mostly low to middle income housing complexes- though that is a bit of a "brag"- considering it is three buildings, and not that many units- but it does make me a fair amount of walking around cash- enough to re-invest in my motorcycle business.

This is where an Obama presidency and dem congress/house COULD help me out a bunch. If we get some sort of single payer or universal health care, my bike business would blow up, big time, just based on the work I turn away now, because I can't afford to pay for health care for my employees. And they can't afford to work without it- even though I offer higher actual pay.

I think "job lock" is the #1 hinderance to the backbone of growth in America- the small businessman, as defined as a business with under 100 employees.

Based on business I currently turn away- I can employ 5 full time, highly skilled workers, and 2 minimum wage "shop go-fers" (read:eager industrious teenager after school and summer job) - I can afford all the other costs of doing business, but my potential employees simply have to stay at jobs they hate that do not use thier talents to thier fullest simply to maintain health insurance (I can afford 401ks for my employees as well, just not health insurance, at 1200 a month a pop per employee) -

we are simply NOT using our work force efficiently by locking them into corporate jobs they hate just to keep thier families on health care.

Obama's corporate tax structure and personal income tax structure, as defined, won't even put a dent in my bottom line, in fact, I would shake his hand and give him a campaign contribution if I get to the point that I make 250k a year, net. thumbsup.gif

CruisingRam, we are all well aware of your impressive resume. If there's one thing you do well on this board, it's talk about yourself. However, you were not being addressed, Blackstone was, but thank you anyway for another segment of "I Love Me Some Me." Also, keep in mind that you are hoping to make $250K, and in order to do so your business needs to "take off."

The American Dream is just that, a dream. Nighty, night. sleeping.gif


Sorry to have bored you with my "resume' rolleyes.gif - but I was pointing to the idea that the small increase in taxes for someone over 250k will NOT stifle business in anyway, in real world terms, vs far more important considerations in overhead for a business. Universal health care, for instance, would negate the need for workers comp insurance, or, at least mitigate it to the point that it is very, very affordable for adding an employee.

Wihtout "touting" my own resume'- can you agree that if you have a skilled labor type business (lets call it welding rolleyes.gif ) that you need to almost triple your per-hour charges to add another employee? Workers comp insurance is one of the big expenses, along with an increase in liability insurance and other payroll items, not to mention employee training and testing for licensure.

Right now, if you want to pay an employee 25 bucks an hour for welding for you, you need to charge about 100 dollars an hour, depending on other overhead issues- a big shop, with rising energy costs, really, about 125 bucks an hour to be 'worth it" to the smal business owner. That is the going rate where I am from- I have no idea what the going rate is in your area.

You take away the health care part of the equation, and all of a sudden, adding another employee becomes very, very cheap, and very good for your business.

Do you deny "job lock" is a real issue as well? I was also addressing blackstone via 'cross-dialogue" on points you made- do you not recognize that as well? hmmm.gif - or rather, adding to your points.

Business will NOT be nearly as harmed by an Obama so-called "wealth distribution" (at worst, a bad choice of terms) versus the McCain "no richy-rich left behind" continuation of GW policies.

That is why I used a personal anecdote- to highlight the "where am I being harmed" by Obama's so called "wealth redistribution".

You take away the reasons for job lock, and you get lots and lots of more people able to risk being a small business owner, rather than a wage slave.

How many people do YOU know that would "quit the dayjob" if they had the safety net of health insurance for thier families?

There is no way in hell my taxes are going to go up 1200 a month because of Obama's tax plan or universal health care- netting me (sorry, you too, didn't mean to brag on myself rolleyes.gif ) a actual increase in real world walkin' around money.

I also think that is why some corporations are starting to hype universal health care as well- they can't really afford it either.

Universal health care, a new tax structure, and what it means to your own personal bottom line can't really be seperated as issues.

Obama's economic plan, if he does get us some kind of universal health care, at least for kids even, is far better than anything the republicans have offered, well, ever.
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Paladin Elspeth
post Nov 2 2008, 01:43 AM
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I remember what Colin Powell said during his official endorsement of Barack Obama for President. When asked about redistribution of wealth, he said that taxes are redistribution of wealth. Can anyone contradict him?

Is there a way in what is supposed to be the most (add superlative adjective of your choice) country in the world for poverty to be drastically reduced without bankrupting those who are making it financially?

Is there a way to make sure that American citizens can have jobs, education and health care regardless of their socioeconomic classification?

I think this is what Barack Obama is trying to address. It's funny that the very mention of "socialism" gets some folks scared and other folks (like me) defensive. Are we to believe that a capitalist system that allows for such gluttonous wealth and such desperate poverty is the ideal? Would not a synthesis, borrowing from other systems where there isn't such disparity, be better than just saying to those who do not deserve living in deplorable circumstances, "That's the way it is--deal with it!"?

It doesn't affect only the desperately poor. Ask anyone who thought s/he had good insurance, only to be denied claims when struck with a catastrophic illness. Ask the employee who has worked a job which s/he hated precisely for health benefits for the family only to have the company reduce those benefits or ship her/his job outside the country so the job could be done more cheaply.

There does need to be change, legislative change. Do our leaders only serve the rich and privileged, or are they actually there to serve all their constituents?

Laissez faire capitalism has brought us to where we are now. Unregulated business, without a thought for the consequences, has made bad investments and has enabled Americans to buy beyond their means. Coupled with job losses, it has been devastating for us. Something needs to be done differently.

This post has been edited by Paladin Elspeth: Nov 2 2008, 01:46 AM
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JohnfrmCleveland
post Nov 2 2008, 03:29 AM
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1. Looking at the above passage, would you conclude that Senator Obama was taking a principled stand against judicially-imposed redistribution of wealth, or that he was merely objecting to the strategy on practical grounds?

I listened to the whole 4 minutes. (The video, by the way, was put together by some guy who is trying to make Obama sound terrifying. Complete with spooky background music and highlighted, out-of-context snippets to make him sound like some kind of Commie.) Obama's talk was purley informational, and completely correct. He didn't even take a stand on what he thought should be done. He just said, correctly, that the courts are not the ones who should be, in effect, laying down unfunded mandates. For example, courts have the power to order school districts to desegregate by busing, but they can't legislate the funds to pay for it. So he was saying that kind of thing would be more practically addresses by Congress. He said you could justify the courts doing it. Brown was not an incorrect decision, and there are other examples where economic inequalities could be challenged in the courts - but the better way is through Congress, who can craft laws and provide funding.

The other prong of his talk was that economic inequalities are also better addressed through simple organization - using information and consumer power to try to address the inequalities. Free market stuff, really.

2. Would those practical considerations likely change if he were in a position to nominate judges for the Supreme Court, and send those nominations to a filibuster-proof Democratic-controlled Senate?

I think you have an incorrect reading of what he was saying, which makes the question off-base. You are obviously buying McCain's "redistribution of wealth" crapola, just like the maker of your linked video did. Obama never suggested that the courts should be used to redistribute wealth, or that redistribution was the right thing to do by any means. What he said, correctly, was that the courts have the power to effect some changes, but they avoid doing so because they are uncomfortable doing so. Making laws (including using tax money, thereby "redistributing the wealth") is the province of Congress. Interpreting the law is the province of the Courts.

3. Does this interview, and perhaps other revelations from his days in Chicago/Illinois politics, add to the feeling that there's a lot we really don't know about Senator Obama and his agenda?

It only adds to my feeling that many people are incapable of correctly interpreting a simple four-minute piece of audio.

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Bikerdad
post Nov 2 2008, 04:58 AM
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QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Nov 1 2008, 03:07 PM) *
I was specific, I believe, to failed industries needing bailouts.

No, you were not specific. First, you go after troubled banks. Banking is not a failed industry. Then, you expand your dragnet to "every CEO in this country." Not, "every bank CEO", nor "every CEO of a failed company". Given your frequent attacks on Big Oil, which is most certainly NOT a "failed industry", taking "every CEO in this country" to mean, well, exactly what you said seems perfectly reasonable. And, it comports with what you said. You may have meant something else, but that's your problem, not mine.

QUOTE
I have nothing but respect for succesful, well managed companies.
Really? ExxonMobil posts the highest profits of any company in history. You gonna show them some respect?

QUOTE
Some are badly managed, but too big to fail, and despite the beaurocracy and bad behaviors, small business can't compete from the shere size of the corporations.
The only corporations that are "too big to fail" are those who's product or services are absolutey critical to national defense AND represent a difficult resource to rebuild. Aside from Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and a few other defense companies, there aren't any such companies in this country. That includes the financial companies.

QUOTE
What I have a "pathological hatred" for is rewarding, over and over again, with taxpayer money, CEOs that run thier companies into the ground, and recieve no sanctions for this- they are protected from lawsuits, and protected from any kind of negative reinforcement for thier behaviors.
So sue. Seriously. Under the 14th Amendment, you deserve equal treatment. Sue for your $700 billion. I agree with you that we shouldn't be rewarding CEO's that run companies into the ground with taxpayer money. Perhaps if you directed some of your ire at the Friends of Obama who ran Freddie Mac {or was it Fannie Mae?} into the ground, the broad base of your pathological hatred would be more believable.

QUOTE
The wealth has been redistributted so heavily upward, I don't consider a downward redistribution to be "redistribution" at all-but rather, a loan payment come due or a time for payback.
I'm not sure how you can argue that a downward "redistribution" to folks who haven't paid meaningful taxes in decades amounts to a loan repayment....

QUOTE
As long as a CEO is succesful, and isn't running the company into the ground, he should get paid all the market will bear. If his company is getting a bailout, he should have to pay 110% of all his life earnings until the debt has been satisfied.
Well, that's a pretty good way to insure that nobody except incompetent losers will ever risk being CEOs. Nothing quite like having to repay more than you've made in your entire life because of failure, especially when the failure may not have been your fault...., or the result of simple incompetence. Who knew that in CR's world, failure is a crime against the state?

QUOTE(Paladin Elspeth)
I remember what Colin Powell said during his official endorsement of Barack Obama for President. When asked about redistribution of wealth, he said that taxes are redistribution of wealth. Can anyone contradict him?
I can. Taxes are not the redistribution of wealth. Taxation is pretty much a necessity of redistribution, but taxation doesn't equate to redistribution. What the government does with the taxes determines whether or not its redistribution, as well as whether the taxes are equally applied. Basically, the greater the disparity between "government services" received and taxes paid, the greater the redistribution. If Powell's understanding of redistribution is that limited, then he's merely demonstrated his economic ignorance.

QUOTE
Is there a way in what is supposed to be the most (add superlative adjective of your choice) country in the world for poverty to be drastically reduced without bankrupting those who are making it financially?
Well, given that we have already "drastically reduced" poverty, we already know the way. Of course, as long as we continue to redefine poverty upward, the reduction won't be seen.

QUOTE
Laissez faire capitalism has brought us to where we are now. Unregulated business, without a thought for the consequences, has made bad investments and has enabled Americans to buy beyond their means. Coupled with job losses, it has been devastating for us. Something needs to be done differently.
To blame this on laissez faire capitalism is gross philosophical slander! w00t.gif

Laissez-faire capitalism is a politico-economic system based on private ownership of the means of production and in which the powers of the state are limited to the protection of the individual's rights against the initiation of physical force. This protection applies to the initiation of physical force by other private individuals, by foreign governments, and, most importantly, by the individual's own government.
...
Government Intervention Actually Responsible for the Crisis
Beyond all this (a listing of the non-laissez faire government meddling in the economy) is the further fact that the actual responsibility for our financial crisis lies precisely with massive government intervention, above all the intervention of the Federal Reserve System in attempting to create capital out of thin air, in the belief that the mere creation of money and its being made available in the loan market is a substitute for capital created by producing and saving.
The Myth: Laissez Faire is Responsible for the Current Crisis


Frankly, I have to wonder why you appear to be calling for government to insure that people "don't buy beyond their means." The logic of such a call is truly terrifying, and about as antithetical to freedom as possible. "Buying beyond" one's means simply amounts to making future commitments without current resources. What limits on such commitments are you willing to embrace? What moral basis do you offer for such limits? How do you plan on enforcing such limits?

Both you and CruisingRam seem to be zeroing in on the "job lock" matter, and both seem to think that laissez faire is the reason for the health care problems. Yet its government regulation that created the current health care insurance system. Its government regulation that prevents you from getting "X" healthcare dollars from your employer and shopping for your insurance. Its government regulation that resulted in healthcare becoming part of one's compensation, rather than getting more $$ in your pocket. And more government regulation is what Obama is seeking. Laissez-faire is not the problem.
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Paladin Elspeth
post Nov 2 2008, 08:26 AM
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QUOTE(BD)
Frankly, I have to wonder why you appear to be calling for government to insure that people "don't buy beyond their means." The logic of such a call is truly terrifying, and about as antithetical to freedom as possible. "Buying beyond" one's means simply amounts to making future commitments without current resources. What limits on such commitments are you willing to embrace? What moral basis do you offer for such limits? How do you plan on enforcing such limits?

It was an observation. I would not presume to say how the government would ensure that people did not buy beyond their means. I just know that when private citizens and businesses overextend themselves, there are consequences. Some businesses survive and even thrive when people overspend, and while the short-term benefit is great, a populace that increasingly cannot meet its financial obligations is not great and ultimately poses problems for everyone.

John McCain's insistence on little to no oversight where Wall Street and the banks are concerned did not help the current crisis. Naturally, McCain cannot and should not be blamed by himself (there are plenty of other people who feel the less oversight, the better), but the term "laissez faire" means to leave something or somebody alone to do whatever they wish, and some timely guidance rather than letting the market correct itself might have made the bailout ultimately less expensive for all of us.

I'm sure you know more about economics than I do, but there are some pretty obvious causes and consequences that can be seen by even the (relatively) unschooled such as myself.

It isn't so much trying to enforce scruples or morality as it is bringing some pragmatism into the way business is conducted in this country. Somebody must have an idea on how to do that!

This post has been edited by Paladin Elspeth: Nov 2 2008, 08:34 AM
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turnea
post Nov 2 2008, 01:48 PM
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QUOTE(Bikerdad)
I can. Taxes are not the redistribution of wealth. Taxation is pretty much a necessity of redistribution, but taxation doesn't equate to redistribution. What the government does with the taxes determines whether or not its redistribution, as well as whether the taxes are equally applied. Basically, the greater the disparity between "government services" received and taxes paid, the greater the redistribution. If Powell's understanding of redistribution is that limited, then he's merely demonstrated his economic ignorance.

Actually Powell is 100% correct.

Taxes in fact do always lead to the redistribution of wealth. Services must be paid for and every soldier's (contractor's, congressperson's, law enforcement officier's) salary is some taxpayer's wealth.

Powell, as a soldier is likely well aware of that. People have been redistributing wealth to him for years.

Now if you want to try and place a monetary value on all these services, fine. But a blind average would not be an accurate method of determining who receives more services. Obviously those who avail themselves of these services get more bang for their (and someone else's) buck.

In practice taxes always redistribute.

In modern American taxes this is always even more direct. No serious political force in America opposes the progressive income tax.

No politician win any hope of national prominence is opposed to Medicare, Social Security, public education, SBA grants etc.

That's all redistribution, direct redistribution.

...and to say government regulation caused the crises.

Well, that's one school of thought but few serious economists subscribe to it.

Greenspan himself said this was a private sector failure.

This post has been edited by turnea: Nov 2 2008, 03:34 PM
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