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September 18, 2012

Why Romney is Right About "The 47%"

There he goes again. You know: Mitt Romney, a man whose devotion to his country is so great that he bravely took a bullet to distract our intrepid journalistic class from the Obama administration's serial inattention to national security and foreign policy issues:

SCARBOROUGH:... it's a fair critique...all you guys in the media were talking about Mitt Romney, you should have talked about the warnings with the embassy, etc., etc. And yes perhaps we should have. But you know who didn't allow us to do that?

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: Mitt Romney.

SCARBOROUGH: Mitt Romney. ... Romney got in the way of the media looking at the president...

This is a man so ruthless and powerful (yet strangely wimpy and indecisive) that he can do things no president before him has done. He can - singlehandedly, without convincing Congress! - prevent women from obtaining contraceptives. Using secret, time altering technology financed by his ill-gotten gains, he can take the country back to the days when barefoot Oppressed Womynfolk were chained to tiny pink EasyBake ovens and forced to bake cupcakes for The Unevolved, Penis-Having Half of Humynity:

It was bad enough when Mitt Romney only wanted to turn the clock back to the Stone Age when women were routinely impregnated against their will and forced to procreate for Teh Patriarchy. Yes, that was bad enough, but not as terrifying as the latest troubling revelation about this Deeply Scary Candidate.

Apparently, he can unilaterally overturn Supreme Court decisions, repeal acts of Congress, kill women, and cancel our insurance policies.

With his mind....

This is a man who regularly unleashes the Mighty Condor Grip of Death on hapless persuns of cholor. But no longer - the proverbial jig is up. In a searing expose of This Deeply Scary Candidate's utter contempt for the 99%, The Nation's David Corn lays bare this damning quote:

During a private fundraiser earlier this year, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney told a small group of wealthy contributors what he truly thinks of all the voters who support President Barack Obama. He dismissed these Americans as freeloaders who pay no taxes, who don't assume responsibility for their lives, and who think government should take care of them.

Romney can't deny that's exactly what he said, because it is self evidently self evident that people who believe income redistribution is a legitimate function of government are OBVIOUSLY freeloaders who don't want to assume responsibility for their lives. It's coded language that only racists and 1 percenters can detect. David Corn says so! Oh wait... that was Mr. Corn's helpful translation of a message only America-hating haters can hear. This is what Romney actually said. Pardon our confusion:

There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that's an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax.

This is a particularly horrible thing to say, because it completely contradicts the brilliant arguments made by the Obama administration for raising income taxes for the top income quintile (a whopping 90% of whom are married couple families) and cutting them for people who already pay no income tax (presumably on the theory that "nothing" is far too much)! The Obama administration's continual suggestions that income inequality is a problem gloss over the critically important reasons top earning households are literally stealing money from the 99% prospering:

1. 90% are married.
2. 76% are dual income couples (in other words, the median number of wage earners per household >= 2).
3. The majority are dual income households precisely because women are "allowed" to work.

Hmmm.... staying in school, getting and staying married, enlightened gender roles, women earning good salaries... clearly these developments are terribly unfair and must be stopped before they can kill someone with an alternative lifestyle. Let's face it: when only the husband works, the family will often be in a lower tax bracket. They might even qualify for federal income redistribution! But once wifey starts earning (particularly if she manages to crack that glass ceiling and achieve pay equity with men), her earnings are taxed at a higher rate than her husband's. By the very folks who are always yammering on about gender equity and fairness!

If it's wrong and inaccurate to claim that families in the lower income quintiles are dependent on negative income tax rates and income transfers - if they don't really need this money - then what is the argument for not taxing them at the same rates they paid under Bill Clinton?

Ezra Klein of the Washington Post’s Wonkblog posted a blog post this week titled “Democrats don’t want to go back to Clinton-era rates” which pointed out that middle income and low income taxpayers had a substantially higher burden under Clinton. Klein is right: returning to those Clinton era rates would substantially increase the taxes paid by most of the bottom 80% of income earners and substantially decrease the number of nonpayers of the federal income tax. As such, many of the advocates of a return to Clinton era rates inadvertently make an economic case for higher taxes on middle and lower income taxpayers.

wlf_clinton_bush.png

Obama - at least to hear him tell it - is a big fan of the Clinton-era tax rates. In fact, that's how he describes his own tax policies!

... keep in mind, we're talking about folks like me going back to the tax rates that existed under Bill Clinton. If you remember, that was when we created 23 million new jobs, we went from deficits to surplus, and folks at the top did well, too -- because when middle-class families have money in their pockets, they go out and buy that new car, or that new appliance, or that new computer for their kids, or they go out to a restaurant, or, heaven forbid, they take a vacation once in a while. And that money goes back into the economy, and businesses do well because they've got more customers.

If, as the president assures us, the Clinton-era tax rates were directly responsible for the economic bubble boom of the 1990s, then wouldn't we need to return to ALL the Clinton-era rates in order for his plan to work?

Including higher tax rates for the lower and middle classes?

Were Congress to propose a return to all the Clinton era rates, how would the president justify opposing tax hikes for the middle and lower classes? After all, the idea that these households "need" or "depend" on the federal government to help them is clearly not just deeply offensive, but factually inaccurate. Not to mention, deeply insulting and contemptuous.

Right? It would appear that once again, Herr Romney is going to be crucified in the media for agreeing with the president, who believes that the lower and middle classes both "need" and "depend upon" government - and furthermore, that they are entitled to assistance from the federal government. We're all in this together.

That is, after all, the foundational philosophy behind Obama's policies. The justification for these policies - that American households both need and depend on government in order to prosper - can't be clearly stated, less we wound their pride. But the truth is, if you truly believe that income redistribution is a legitimate exercise of government power, you're never going to vote for a man who opposes income redistribution. No argument - except one that changes your mind on the question - will persuade you to vote for a man who does not share your beliefs.

And apparently, acknowledging that incontrovertible truth is deeply, deeply insulting to the intelligence of progressives. Who knew?

Posted by Cassandra at September 18, 2012 07:36 AM

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Comments

It's no small admiration I have for those whose chosen lifestyle is liberal/progressive/Leftist. To make that choice and dedicate the rest of your life to defending the contradictory and irreconcilable is no small devotion. On the other hand, perhaps that's why they're so easily infuriated when someone points out the obvious – it's just so much more damned work.

Posted by: George Pal at September 18, 2012 11:57 AM

What I find particularly amusing about the progressive mindset is that they clearly don't believe in practicing what they preach.

I'm still waiting on the explanation for why Warren Buffet doesn't voluntarily pay higher taxes... or why John Foregainst Kerry parked his yacht in another state to avoid the property taxes that fund local government, the source of all that is good and holy. I keep wondering why all these rich progressives don't want to pay "their fair share" of the government they say America needs?

Meanwhile, it's wrong and bad for a man who DOESN'T believe in big government to avail himself of legal tax loopholes but moral and completely acceptable for Buffett, Kerry, and the many members of the Obama cabinet who are tax dodgers to behave in ways that are clearly inconsistent with their professed values?

For that matter, why is President Obama accepting a salary during the worst depression in American history? He's a millionaire. Clearly, he doesn't need the money.

*crickets*

Posted by: Cassandra at September 18, 2012 12:25 PM

I nearly laughed myself silly over Romney's other !!Huge Miscalculation!! on the Israel/Palestinian situation.

Apparently Romney believes the Palestinians are not interested in the two state solution. Which is a, !!Tremendous Lie!!

It would seem that stating commonly held beliefs is some sort of transgression these days.

I would note that the interview I heard, about the Palestinian thing included a spokesperson from the PA. The reporter actually asked the basic question, "well are you?" Homina, homina, homina.

Posted by: Allen at September 18, 2012 01:01 PM

Cassandra,

"they clearly don't believe in practicing what they preach"

And it's not hypocrisy that unmoves them. It's the sure knowledge that they are the 'elect' - receivers of some Gnostic revelation; but by that responsibility exempt from its tenets.

I'd note the progressives and the tolerant of the 18th century Enlightenment were called the Philosophes. It would befit our post-modern tolerant progressives their own identification. I'd suggest the Arrogantes.

Posted by: George Pal at September 18, 2012 01:06 PM

Get thee back to thine EZ Bake Oven, woman.

Thou art making sense. And it has to stop before Progressyves become extinct, thus endangering the delicate balance between the haves and have nots.

Shameful! How dare you suggest that by hard work, free markets and whatnot, that we can have it all!

Posted by: La Femme Crickita at September 18, 2012 02:38 PM

It would seem that stating commonly held beliefs is some sort of transgression these days.

Well, if those so-called "commonly held beliefs" are held by a bunch of ignorant, snake handling religious extremists living in the United States, so be it :p

Posted by: Jay Carney's Brain at September 18, 2012 03:15 PM

For that matter, why is President Obama accepting a salary during the worst depression in American history?

Come on, now. This is the first job he's actually had to work at in his entire life. How can you ask him to pass up his salary at his first real job?

Posted by: Grim at September 18, 2012 03:30 PM

Ha! Yes, I am bitterly clinging to my snakes. :)

Posted by: Allen at September 18, 2012 03:44 PM

Ha! Yes, I am bitterly clinging to my snakes. :)

I am bitterly clinging to the last, pathetic shreds of what used to be my self respect :p

Posted by: Jay Carney's Brain at September 18, 2012 05:59 PM

Holy F&^$*& S&^*, Batman! Romney told a bunch of donors that campaining for Julia!'s vote is a waste of effort? Alert the Press!!!!!

Posted by: The Smartest President Evah! at September 19, 2012 08:47 AM

"Holy F&^$*& S&^*, Batman! Romney told a bunch of donors that campaining for Julia!'s vote is a waste of effort?"

Vell, Rrrrromney knows dat Julia vas ah gurlfriend uf da Urkel fellow vell beforh he married da dominatrix. Uff da!

I sink I need a nap.

Posted by: Doktor Ruth at September 19, 2012 11:15 AM

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