Sunday, September 21, 2008

A look at what Obama and McCain's tax bill would do in 2009

So I wanted to continue a much needed discussion regarding McCain and Obama's economic policies as it started in my post a week ago on the 11th on a completely different topic of foreign affairs.

The economy is a central focus in everybody's minds. I was in NYC this past week with my girlfriend. The first night we were out there we were invited to a dinner party, one of the men who I met there was just coming home from his day at work as an accounting and investments attorney... and yeah we all had a drink or two. It became clear to me how much of the city will be effected by the drop of investor confidence. Finance is the bread and butter of the Big Apple, and the effect which current events on Wall Street and Main Street will have on the nation will last for years. Jobs are vaporizing. Confidence is slipping. We're not quite clear completely what either candidate's plan is yet completely, but details are starting to come in. 

Lets talk about a few things. What are the differences between Obama and McCain's tax bill?

John McCain continues to state that Barack Obama will raise your taxes, but who exactly is he referring to when he says, “your”? Well, according to US Census Bureau data and data from the Tax Plan Center, Yes. Your taxes are going up. If you're among the upper 3% of the working population making more than $227,000. Here is a chart from The Tax Policy Center that shows how the average tax bill could change depending on who is elected.

Source: The Tax Policy Center

IncomeAvg. tax bill Avg. tax bill
Over $2.9M-$269,364 +$701,885
$603K and up-$45,361+$115,974
Under $19K-$19-$567

Household Income Distribution
Source: US Census Bureau, 2006; income statistics for the year 2005
Bottom 10% Bottom 20% Bottom 25% Middle 33% Middle 20% Top 25% Top 20% Top 5% Top 1.5% Top 1%
$0 to $10,500 $0 to $18,500 $0 to $22,500 $30,000 to $62,500 $35,000 to $55,000 $77,500 and up $92,000 and up $167,000 and up $250,000 and up $350,000 and up

I posted this previously without an explanation and the numbers seemed to bring out an awfully confused reaction, so lets talk about it here.

(ed. found these next two charts today from the washington post which visualize the statistics quite clearly)

What do these charts tell us? They tell us that under Obama's plan, less than 5% of the population will be paying more taxes. The five percent that can afford to pay more to their country in a time of economic distress. They'll be paying twice as much back to the government than this top 5% of the salary bracket would be paying under McCain's plan.

We also can gather that middle-class Americans making under 66k annually will be seeing a much higher tax return under Obama's plan, watering the beds of  innovation and making it easier for the HUGE middle class of this country to be able to contribute to our economy and stimulate competition--without economic barriers.

No, Actually I'm not drinking any kool-aid. I'm an American just like you, who cares about the problems in this country just as you do. I want the candidate with a clear understanding of the sources of the problems that face not only our national security regarding foreign affairs, but also economic issues. 

We don't have all the answers from either of the candidates on how they are going to pay for either of their economic plans, but that among many other important issues are going to be coming up in the debates beginning this Friday. Until then, lets see what McCain has to say about the economy from his own lips...  

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Who's a "do nothing Senator"?

A few things strike me. I still hear Obama referred to as a "do-nothing-senator". You'd think people would look this information up before making a complete fool of themselves and try to bolster support for McCain by comparing Senate records.. Lets look at this, shall we?

I was looking at John McCain's Committee membership and see he is a member of only the Committee and subcommittees on Armed Services, Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation and he's a member of the Committee on Indian Affairs.

If John McCain is running for president...

Why isn't he a member of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs??

That's a pretty important Committee. Barack Obama is a member.

Why isn't McCain a member of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs?? Obama is.
(ed: I'm not making this up, I was TOTALLY blown away to see the disregard in John McCain's judgement in deciding it wasn't worth his time or efforts to join any of these committees during his TWENTY SIX years in senate...)

Why isn't McCain a member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, or the subcommittees on either European Affairs, African Affairs, East Asian Affairs or Pacific Affairs?

Guess who is?
Yep, Barack Obama.

(ed: Yes!! I too, feel the need to vomit out of my nose for even having to say any of this. I was STUNNED to find this out while comparing the two candidates... but it does not end there...)

McCain has sponsored 537 bills since 1993, a rate of 35.8 bills a year.
Obama has sponsored 136 bills since 2005, a rate of 45.3 bills a year.

McCain has co-sponsored 1232 bills since 1993, a rate of 82.13 bills a year.
Obama has co-sponsored 659 bills since 2005, a rate of 219 bills a year.

Barack Obama missed 301 of 1282 roll call votes (23%) since Jan 6, 2005
John McCain missed 733 of 4099 roll call votes (18%) since Feb 4, 1993

Both of these percentages are quite high, but a look at the missed votes by month for both candidates (McCain, Obama) clearly indicates that their presidential campaign has driven them both to miss more than a majority of votes since 2007. It is staggering to note that when you add up McCain's missed votes since Obama took a seat in the US Senate, McCain has missed 39.7% of roll call votes.

And with that in mind,
John McCain has sponsored 38 pieces of legislation this term.
Barack Obama has sponsored 129 pieces of legislation this term.

Call Obama a do-nothing Senator one more time, McCain. I love watching you try to keep a straight face while you try to detract the country from how you fall short miserably.

*my source for this data is and a calculator.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

You Tell Me - John McCain's top 5 accomplishments

Hello readers,

I want to leave this one up to you.

Tell me. what are John McCain's top 5 accomplishments?

I've heard SO much about his POW experiences, and heard an awful lot about what he thinks about his opponent, but I'm still left wondering, what has John McCain done, what is it in his wealth of experience that are clear indications that he is the one to take this country by the reigns?

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Cold Warrior, Sarah Palin

"NATO should extend membership to two former Soviet republics (Ukraine and Georgia), and any Russian invasion of a NATO state could lead to a conflict with the U.S.", Republican vice presidential candidate Gov. Sarah Palin told ABC News.

"We have got to show the support, in this case, for Georgia. The support that we can show is economic sanctions perhaps against Russia, if this is what it leads to," she said.

However, the United States and Russia "cannot repeat the Cold War," the Alaska governor said in her first interview since becoming Sen. John McCain's running mate.

Why, then Sarah Palin, are you attempting to grab the steering wheel of foreign relations and drive this nation into a head-on collision with your neighbor, Russia???

Contrary to your statement to ABC news today which will be airing on 20/20 tomorrow night, you don't realize something, Sarah Palin. For the past 20 years the United States has been easily getting away with demoralizing Russia politically, after the decline of the Soviet Union. Read history. Foresight helps resolve conflicts by not getting into them in the first place.

Things have changed, Sarah Palin. It is not wise of you to follow in McCain's shoes by taunting Russia with belligerent and irrelevant "tough talk".. "ECONOMIC SANCTIONS" on Russia? Are you out of your mind? Uhm... and how much of a bargaining chip is the US economy these days to a nation that is drowning in OIL, the worlds numero uno commodity?

Am I the only one to notice that McCain and Palin have been more vocal about foreign "relations" with Russia than our President has been? Why is that?

Sarah Palin's threats to Russia are reflections of insecurities in her own understanding of foreign politics. Before she continues threatening the world's underground superpower, I'd like to know her credentials for talking on such a subject with more responsibility than she has completely come to terms with yet.

I'd describe McCain and Palin not so much of mavericks as they are kamikazes

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Worlds largest combat aircrafts arrive in South America from Russia for training exercises.

blackjackWhile American media is busy wasting breath on lipstick, pitbulls, pigs and OJ Simpson...

Today in South America, two of Russia's supersonic Tupolev Tu-160 bombers landed for "training exercises" in Venezuela after the Bush administration and Mad Dog McCain have continued to repeat their brainless war threatening banter towards Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin.

The Tupolev TU 160, also known as Blackjack, was designed to strike strategic targets with nuclear and conventional weapons deep in continental theatres of operation.

Since we live in the United States of Amnesia, lets review some history, shall we?

* Early 1962 -- Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev, worried by the deployment of U.S. nuclear missiles in Turkey, asked his defence minister if it was time now "to put a hedgehog in Uncle Sam's pants" by sending Soviet nuclear missiles to Cuba.

* The operation, codenamed Anadyr, began shortly afterwards. Soviet ships transport 50,000 soldiers, as well as artillery, tanks and more than 40 medium-range nuclear-capable missiles to Cuba, 11,000 km (6,900 miles) from the Soviet Union.

* October 14, 1962 -- The Cuban missile crisis reached its climax after U.S. U-2 spy planes took the first clear pictures of missiles in Cuba. For a week, Moscow denied the deployment.

* October 22, 1962 -- U.S. President John Kennedy imposed a sea blockade of Cuba and put U.S. armed forces on heightened alert, ready to order a strike on Cuba. The Soviet Union pledged to retaliate with "the most powerful strike".

* October 26, 1962 -- tension started to subside after Moscow announced it is ready to remove its missiles from Cuba in return for U.S. guarantees it will never attack the island. A secret agreement with Moscow removed U.S. missiles from Turkey.

* April 1970 -- after testing Washington's nerves with showy appearances of nuclear submarines in the Gulf of Mexico and landings of Tupolev Tu-95 Bear bombers in Cuba, Moscow decided to boost its presence in the Caribbean in response to increased U.S. moves in the Baltic, Black, Japanese and Bering Seas.

* According to Soviet and Russian military archives, after 1970 the Soviet Navy made at least 29 voyages to Cuba, lasting an average of 40 days. One or two Soviet submarines accompanied these flotillas in half of all the missions.

* Tu-95 strategic bombers and its Tu-142 anti-submarine version landed at local airfields and Moscow's Lourdes signals intelligence facility in Cuba was among the most significant eyeing the United States.

* After 1991 -- the overnight collapse of the Soviet Union and a severe economic crisis ended showy Soviet overseas missions and resulted in the closure of Lourdes, along with bases in some other Soviet allies.

* August 2007 -- President Vladimir Putin ordered Tu-95 and Tu-160 Blackjack strategic bombers to resume flights around the globe. The gesture was designed to show a more assertive role Russia intends to play in world politics.

* Almost simultaneously, Russia's navy starts long-distance sorties overseas.

* Oct 26, 2007 -- Putin, on a visit to Portugal, drew a parallel between U.S. plans to deploy a missile shield in Europe and the Cuban missile crisis in 1962.

* August 2008 -- the U.S. and Poland clinched a deal to deploy elements of Washington's missile shield in Moscow's Cold War ally. The agreement is overshadowed by Russia's brief armed conflict with close U.S. ally and NATO aspirant Georgia.

* Sept 8, 2008 -- Russia said it will send "Peter the Great", one of the world's largest nuclear-powered warships, to Venezuela for a joint naval exercise in the Caribbean, its first major maneuvers on the U.S. doorstep since the Cold War.

Monday, September 8, 2008

New Honda Insight concept released!!

Honda has released details on their upcoming replacement for the first mass-produced hybrid car ever, the Insight... To me it looks more like an even uglier Prius than the previous Insight.. I'm a little confused as to Honda's strategy there... Apparently the new insight will be four doors??? Hm. to me that's disappointing, but for the market which more or less rejected the insight, I can see their strategy..

Honda released details on the new CR-Z concept a few months back, which actually looks a lot more like a redesigned Insight than what they are calling the "2010 Insight". The CR-Z is expected to be a "3 door hatchback".

Unless I'm missing the fine print, Honda has yet to release any expected efficiency ratings for either car.. I'd expect the CRZ will be rated higher as it's a smaller vehicle, and expected to be a bit pricey.. not a bad looking car... if only the interior didn't look like a throwback to TRON

John McCain's best and smartest people in America


Promising a "very bipartisan approach" to how he'll run his administration, Sen. John McCain said in an interview broadcast Sunday that he would appoint Democrats to his Cabinet.

Sen. John McCain says he would put the "best" and "smartest people in America" in his Cabinet.

Speaking to CBS' "Face the Nation," the Republican presidential nominee vowed that he won't just have a single token Democrat in his Cabinet.

"It's going to be the best people in America, the smartest people in America," McCain said. "So many of these problems we face -- for example, energy independence -- what's partisan about that?"

Who MADE it a partisan issue and is now pretending they've been supporting it all along? Your party dragged Carter and Gore into the ground over caring about our dependence on foreign oil back when we could have done something to avoid the trouble we're now in.


Ok, so my question to you is was Sarah Palin the best and smartest person available to John McCain as a VP pick? 

Please, take a second to answer the poll question I just posted. 

Thursday, September 4, 2008

General Election is off...

Well the Republican National Convention is over, so you can lower the tarp from over your head, for now. Make sure to only touch the bottom side and dispose of it in a sealed receptacle promptly.

"Please, please my friends, my dear friends, please don't be diverted by the ground noise and the static"

Don't worry John, your campaign is as transparent as your inability to speak to anyone outside that same rootin tootin base that cheered only a little bit louder for Bush in 2004.

Palin was an effective speaker if a sock puppet can be an effective actor... We'll see how she deals with the media, which has barely scratched the surface of really looking at Sarah Polin's political life.

By the way John and Sarah, welcome to the scrutiny of American media. Despite an apparent wide case of amnesia among Republicans, Sarah Palin's family is not the first politician's family to get thrown into the ring this year. Get used to it.

I was shocked that the party crossed over a certain line by belittling the aspirations of millions of Americans who dedicate their life to cleaning up Washington's mess by volunteering in their cities and communities. I mean, Palin's words speak for themselves.. she doesn't consider the dedication of community organizers an "actual responsibility"?? Slight conflict of interest there Sarah... These are Americans who sacrifice time from their jobs, their families and friends to commit themselves to serving here at home, on our city streets and communities in need... not exactly the class of Americans you'd want to have demanding an apology from you as they are now.

Yeah, I guess Pitbulls aren't really well known for their good judgement.

So, what it comes down it is the question: Did the Republicans convince me at this year's convention that John McCain is well suited to lead this country in the right direction? No, not so much.

They did a great job at diverting from that incapability by focusing on every single thing BUT McCain's (lack of?) solutions, though.