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    Should I go to the Occupy Ithaca protest tomorrow?  And tell them that they already occupy Ithaca so they can’t occupy themselves?

    How are the Occupy protests any different than what we see every time there is a G20 meeting?

    Not good when a candidate’s wife becomes an issue, and when the candidate then has to defend what the wife said.  Anita Perry was correct, but still not good.

    So Obama knew about Fast and Furious before Holder?  Don’t think so.

    $86 billion in supposed Obamacare savings just went out the door.  Who coulda predicted.

    What else?

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    Rising Cain

    There has been a huge surge in Cain support in the last 24 hours. In one of the videos below Stephen Moore, author and member of the editorial board of the WSJ mentions Cain campaign contributions have surged dramatically.

    http://online.wsj.com/video/opinion-can-herman-cain-win/A8FB0CAD-3A70-4089-8512-1429007F4595.html

    http://am.blogs.cnn.com/2011/10/13/can-gop-candidate-herman-cains-9-9-9-work/

    Cain’s 9-9-9 ideas apparently came from this book by Arthur B. Laffer and Stephen Moore:

    http://www.amazon.com/Return-Prosperity-America-Economic-Superpower/dp/B005EP2EUK

    “The (powerful) anti-tax Club for Growth is rising to Herman Cain’s defense amid growing scrutiny of – and questions about – his “9-9-9″ economic plan:

    “Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 plan is both pro-growth and a good starting point on the way to a flat or fair tax,” said Club president Chris Chocola.”

    “The Club is neutral in the campaign, but this is the first time that Chocola has shored up the flank of a candidate under fire.”

    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1011/65967.html

    “Kevin Hassett, director of economic policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute, said the (Cain’s) plan would simplify the tax code and not sacrifice current tax revenue. “We’d have pretty high confidence that it could increase growth a lot,” he said.
    “This is a far more sophisticated plan than one might have expected, given that he is not a person that has been inside politics his whole life,” Hassett said. “The Cain plan is really solid. The only criticism one could make is it’s too bold or something like that.”


       
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      spartan in reply to Viator. | October 15, 2011 at 8:07 am

      In the CNN video, Moore said the 9-9-9 plan was not perfect but it was bold; with most of the problems resulting from the national sales tax. In a recent interview on FNC, Moore said he would love to get into the details of the 9-9-9 plan to see if it was viable. To date, Cain has not given any specifics about his plan. Without these specifics, I think there is nothing more than blind faith supporting this plan.


       
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      retire05 in reply to Viator. | October 15, 2011 at 11:44 am

      Anyone who is honest about Cain’s 9-9-9 plan would admit that it is just a take off of the Fair Tax. That is the real foundation behind 9-9-9. But there are some major problems with it, one being that the whole current tax code would have to be abolished, and that would require Congressional action. I don’t think Cain could get Congress to abolish a progressive tax system that has been in place for almost 100 years.

      Also, there is no way that Cain, as President, could bind a future Congress to what this Congress passes. What Congress gives, Congress can take away. If a Democrat held Congress wanted to impose a 20-20-20 in the future with a Democrat president, they could do it.

      The biggest flaw is the sales tax aspect of it. Sales taxes are imposed by states, counties and localities. How is Cain going to convince those entities to give up the one secure source of revenue they have and turn it over to the federal goverment to be redistributed as Congress sees fit? Right now, those sales taxes remain in the states, being used to cover state expenditures. If that money was dumped into the federal coffers, it would be spread out, depending on which state the Congress felt deserved it.

      There are other problems with the last 9% of the Cain plan. In some states, sales tax is not charged on certain items like groceries and medications. Being that those two items are the biggest items in a low income/senior budget, it would reduce their buying power by 9%. There is some talk of a “prebate” given to those people, but then, isn’t that just another wealth redistribution plan. And wouldn’t it require people, who currently do not file income tax due to living off Social Security, to do so in order to get their sale tax back? Add one more layer of red tape at the IRS. The EITC was designed to do the same thing and has now become rife with fraud. Why do we give people more from the IRS than they paid in? That makes April 15th payday for them.

      So you can’t convince states to give up their sales tax, and now you wind up with a cumlative sales tax upwards of 20%. That will reduce consumption of goods and services, and with the reduction of demand, will reduce the need for jobs that create those products.

      Cain has also said that the 9% sales tax would only apply to “new” goods. That means a 9% sales tax on a new car, but not on a used car. That will have unintended consequences; first, new car sales will plummet and the cost of used cars, generally purchased by lower income families, will skyrocket due to demand and not having to pay the 9% sale tax. Would that sales tax also apply to housing? If you purchase new house, you pay 9% sales tax on it, but if you buy a existing home, you don’t? How is that going to affect new home construction?

      The 9% corporate tax is also problematic. Corporations pass the cost of taxes off to the consumer in the pricing of their product. Those taxes are listed in the “expenditures” column. Also Cain said that it would eliminated payroll taxes, currently called Social Security and Medicare taxes. It would then make SS/M/M nothing more that a total welfare program, with no revenue, and strictly covered by the general revenue coffers.

      I have read Dennis Prager’s Fair Tax book and it is just as convoluted as the system we have now. And that is where Cain is coming from.

        Hi Retire05,

        Read Neil Boortz’s FAIRTAX books. They deal with the issues that you present. One of these days I’ll get around to posting my white paper on the FAIRTAX on my blog as a permanent download feature, because it deals with most of the same issues you bring up talking about the 9-9-9 plan.

        – The prebate – (at least under the FAIRTAX) is designed to be paid to EVERY household regardless of income, to finance spending for new goods up to the poverty level as designated by HHS guidelines (X% of income on $11,400, I think) divided monthly. Thus, no one pays taxes at all on spending up to the poverty level (considered the minimum level necessary to take care of your family unit’s needs).

        – Imbedded taxes vs. explicit taxes – You have to put the embedded FAIRTAX on the same scale as ‘post total’ state sales taxes. Since the FAIRTAX is embedded, it’s actually treated as a smaller percentage than otherwise would appear of the total.

        – Taxes only on new goods – the concept here is that goods should only be taxed ONCE. Once the tax is paid, the good should be able to be transferred tax free between other interested parties. Does it change the current economics of purchasing decisions? YES. Is that consequence unintended? NO. It is entirely specifically thought out and intended, because items will retain their inherent value longer, rather than losing a piece of that inherent value to the tax code with every transfer. It promotes best economic use of material that currently exists.

        – Also, regarding taxing only new goods – if you get rid of the inherent tax burden (from imbedded income, corporate and other sales taxes currently imposed at EVERY transaction level) the actual sales tax is only 0.8% higher than the current total imbedded taxes, and is only collected ONCE at the first “end user” purchase. Yes, this applies to houses (they’re a good, like anything else). Apartment renters would pay the tax of the owner in terms of higher rents, but that occurs anyway now.

        – Re State taxes – Nothing in the FAIRTAX (or the 9-9-9 plan) that I’ve seen displaces state sales taxes. Those would still be added on to the total AFTER the Federal Sales Tax portion would be imposed (explicit vs. imbedded tax).

        The 9-9-9 plan is better than what we have now, but is still less elegant than the FAIRTAX proposal, because it can still be played with in terms of deductions, limitations and other accounting gimicks for dealing with “corporate” and “income” taxes. The FAIRTAX gets rid of all those games by only taxing “consumption,” which is what the income tax was supposed to be proxy-taxing when it was created in the first place.


     
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    jakee308 | October 14, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    In case anyone missed this; they are going to have a conference in Finland about creating a nuclear free zone in the Mideast.

    Sounds like a good idea right? Maybe this’ll get Iran to drop their weapons program that they claim they don’t have and don’t want. Right?

    Wrong. This is all about disarming Israel. I can guarantee that the first order of business will be requiring Israel to give up it’s nukes before anyone else does or before anyone else even promises to disarm. Maybe they’ll just start with demanding ‘inspections’. So they can count them I guess.

    That’s what this ploy is all about. They have no power over Iran or the other countries pursuing nuclear weaponry. No sanctions have worked so far to deter their pursuit of nuclear weapons. They do think they can bully Israel and thus this conference.

    Trouble is, Israel knows this and knows that one of the main reasons that Egypt, Syria, Turkey and maybe even a little bit Iran have only made noises about attacking Israel and have so far only used conventional, limited weaponry is that they surmise (correctly) that Israel would rather turn the ME into a solidified lake of radioactive glass than be exterminated.

    Sort of a poor man’s MAD policy.

    That doesn’t mean that the cheese eating surrender monkeys in Europe won’t give it a try.

      Never going to happen.

      The “Samson Option” is far too deeply ingrained into the defense subculture in Israel for them to ever agree to such a “nuclear free” region, and there’s no mechanism for imposing it upon Israel by any outside force without Israeli agreement.

      The UN can’t impose such a requirement: it would have to go through the Security Council, where a US veto would be sure to occur. Obama got burned badly by “Squatter Statehood,” he’s not going to touch a political issue that actually has the ability to destroy his presidential reelection chances like disarming Israel with Iran sitting just a few hundred miles away.

      Besides, the Likud party will NEVER stand for it to occur, and even should Labor or the Socialists come to power, Likud will still have enough horsepower to see that disarmament would never be implemented via it’s civil service individuals appointed to the defense industry.

      The cheese eating surrender monkeys, as you correctly refer to them, can hold conferences, talks and speeches all they want. They don’t have any real power over Israel, so there’s no stick, and no carrot is going to entice Israel to do something so foolish as to give up it’s strategic weapons advantage in the face of several dozen hostile countries within spitting distance of it’s borders.

    I’m sick of the RINO establishment Republicans dissing everybody but Romney. SICK OF IT!

      The RINOs are going to try to spread the damage around as much as possible, but not to fatally wound any of the other candidates. The more candidates are around, the more likely that Romney becomes the nominee by default, and the lower percentage Romney has to gain. If a couple of candidates drop out (which is likely to happen between now and the second or third primary states), The other candidates become stronger in terms of their support.

      My guess is that Huntsman, Santorum and Gingrich are likely to drop out before “Super Tuesday” in March, probably because they will run out of money. I think they’re still in it just to get matching funds to cover debt, and then they’ll drop.

      Bachmann, I think, will stay in at least past Super Tuesday, because I think she wants to be the next Speaker of the House, and making a good Presidential showing, and then electing another 30 or 40 TEA Partiers to the House will make that happen. But I would be surprised if she stays in past Super Tuesday if she doesn’t do well on that day.

      Paul will stay in it simply because he’s just too dang stubborn to quit, regardless of his standings. He’s used to running a campaign on a shoe-string and a piece of chewing gum.

      Romney, Perry, and now Cain I think are in it for the long haul, unless something drastic changes or one of them horribly bombs on Super Tuesday. That’s going to be the date that separates the wheat from the chaff, so to speak.


         
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        Anon Y. Mous in reply to Chuck Skinner. | October 15, 2011 at 12:00 am

        Gingrich is up to 3rd in some polls. Unless that trend reverses, I expect him to hang on until Super Tuesday.

          From the numbers I’ve been seeing, I think that might just be a bad sample or a slightly differently sliced group of the electorate. I’d need to look deeper than I have at the underlying structure and random selection of the poll to be sure, but my guess is that it’s unintentionally North-East heavy.

          It’s entirely possible that I’m wrong, but that just seems to be the way that polls with Gingrich advancing are reading.

          Sometimes even when not by design, you get a slightly skewed sample, and when you’re likely only asking 1000-1100 people at a shot, a small unintended skewing can make a huge difference. I like Gingrich (a Gingrich-Huckabee ticket was my first choice), but from what I’ve seen he’s not doing particularly well.

          My guess is that when he comes in 3rd, or maybe even 4th, in South Carolina after placing 5th or 6th in Iowa he’ll call it quits. The poor showing in Iowa will be campaign strategy, but a poor showing in South Carolina (where he’s making his big push as I understand it) will be fatal to Gingrich’s campaign. Unless he’s developed huge momentum by the time Florida holds it’s primary, I think that he’ll be toast.

          On the other side of the poll reporting, with Herman Cain’s recent meteoric rise, the media HAS to make one of the other ‘low level’ candidates look like he or she is gaining in order to say “well, the race is turning over, the presumed front-runners have lost their footing and once written off candidates are now in the lead” instead of having to report that “Cain’s streamlined message is resonating with the Republican base” and that he’s eating everybody else’s lunch.


             
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            JayDick in reply to Chuck Skinner. | October 15, 2011 at 10:34 am

            Good analysis, but it is noteworthy that Rasmussen’s latest poll has Gingrich at 10 percent. I think Rasmussen is far better than the others. He takes larger samples and includes only likely voters. I have heard experts say that the other aspects of his polls are also superior.

            I like Cain a lot, but I’m not crazy about the sales tax part of his 9-9-9 plan; it would also be easy for the Democrats to demagogue. As a person and as a campaigner, however, he would be a tough competitor to Obama.

            Despite lots of misgivings about Romney, I’ll vote for him if he’s the only candidate that will beat Obama. I’ll vote for any Republican against Obama.

    When did Eric Holder first know about Fast & Furious, aka Gunrunner? You decide after reading Holder’s April 2, 2009 remarks at a conference in Mexico, which was also attended by Janet Napolitano.

    http://www.justice.gov/ag/speeches/2009/ag-speech-090402.html

    “Last week, our administration launched a major new effort to break the backs of the cartels. My department is committing 100 new ATF personnel to the Southwest border in the next 100 days to supplement our ongoing Project Gunrunner, DEA is adding 16 new positions on the border, as well as mobile enforcement teams, and the FBI is creating a new intelligence group focusing on kidnapping and extortion. DHS is making similar commitments, as Secretary Napolitano will detail.

    But as today’s conference has emphasized, the problem of arms trafficking will not be stopped at the border alone. Rather, as our experts emphasized, this is a problem that must be met as part of a comprehensive attack against the cartels – an attack in depth, on both sides of the border, that focuses on the leadership and assets of the cartel. “


     
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    malclave | October 14, 2011 at 10:06 pm

    If the military starts tweeting with hashtags such as #OccupyIraq, #OccupyAfghanistan, #OccupySouthKorea, #OccupyKosovo, etc., will liberals like them more?


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