Talking With The Congressman About Poetry — Er, Tax Reform

Ever since I moved in 2003 from Barbara Lee's district in Oakland, CA to Tom Price's district in suburban Atlanta (Newt Gingrich's old district), I've sort of felt a stepped-up need to interface with my congressperson. In Oakland, I could pretty much rest easy in the knowledge that my congressperson would propose or vote for issues that I myself would support, were I in congress. No politician...

Fiscal NIMBYism

3/2 - see update at bottom* Pew Research is out with another poll, this time focused on budgetary and financial issues, given the upcoming sequester, and the results are depressingly predictable. The title alone gives away the findings almost completely: As Sequester Deadline Looms, Little Support for Cutting Most Programs (pdf). The key graph is here: This is the quandary American politics - no,...

Here Are The 'Six Studies' Romney Says Refute Tax Policy Center Study Of His Tax Plan

*** 10/16 - SEE UPDATE BELOW; ROMNEY FINALLY RELEASES DETAILS OF TAX PLAN*** Back at the beginning of August, the non-partisan Tax Policy Center issued a much-discussed study that was the first to try to run the numbers on Mitt Romney's tax plan. Specifically, they wanted to see whether Romney's claim to be able to leave the Bush tax cuts in place and then cut taxes by an additional 20% across...

On Mitt Romney's 47% Comments

What Ezra said. Romney's comments were so shocking - and disgusting - on their face, that it's tempting to simply point to them or mirror the video and assume that the reader/viewer will know without thinking what's wrong with them. Truthfully, most people probably will intuitively understand most or all of why Romney's comments were so vile. But merely using implied assumptions to carry the day...

Payroll Tax Holiday Aftermath

I just received, as I'm sure many of you did, an email from the White House crowing about the recent total victory over John "Dr. No" Boehner and the GOTea party house.I don't blame the President and his team at all for sending out these glad tidings. It WAS a shockingly complete rout of Boehner and his pro-1% flying monkeys. Congratulations all 'round. For real. Only...the email focused upon the...

US Businesses NOT Being Strangled By Regulation And Taxation, World Bank Says

That's the title of an article over at that noted socialist rag, Forbes Magazine (yes, FORBES!). I capitalized the "not" in the title, because if one only listens to GOP Presidential candidates or the conservative media and talk radio, the cognitive dissonance from reading that article's title might very well lead the reader to simply elide the "not." One of the few (but distinct) downsides to...

When (and HOW) Will Our Manufactured Debt-Ceiling Crisis End?

I will leave this poll up in the sidebar for new votes until the crisis is actually resolved - however (and whenever) it gets resolved. I stopped at seven answers (including the ever-popular "other"), but in truth, I could have just as easily constructed a poll with eleven or fifteen answers, all slightly different. Between the "Grand Bargain" floated by Obama, the McConnell deal (both the...

Does Hypocrisy Matter?

Over at Mother Jones, Kevin Drum writes a quick, irked post in which he takes the ever-odious Gregg Easterbrook to task for the admittedly annoying habit of always looking for perceived hypocrisy, even when it's not there or the charge of hypocrisy isn't relevant or accurate: The point of laws is to provide a level playing field, and no one is a hypocrite for following existing law even if they...

Expanded Thoughts On Why This Tax 'Deal' Is Bad Medicine

I usually tend towards the lengthy and expository on this blog, because although the blog community tends to be catholic in its tastes (birds of a feather often flocking together, I mean), I'm always aware that you never know who might be reading any given post, or what their level of understanding of background issues is. This week, however, I am in the midst of scrambling around trying to get...