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Posts Tagged ‘Biden’

Vice President Biden said it very clearly – we “misread how bad the economy was”.  That’s the good thing about Joe Biden; he just tells you straight, just like it is.  He doesn’t try to finesse things or put the right political spin on things – he just blurts out the truth as best he knows it.  It’s kind of refreshing, isn’t it?  A day or so later. President Obama tried to correct Joe’s statement by saying “we had incomplete information”.  Apparently Paul Krugman wasn’t suffering from incomplete information, nor was Nouriel Roubini. Back in January, Nobel Prize winning economist Krugman criticized the Obama plan saying that we needed a stimulus package twice as big as the Obama plan. Meanwhile, Nouriel Roubini, the economist who predicted the worldwide economic meltdown, thereby earning the title of Dr. Doom and simultaneously qualifying for a Nobel Prize himself, also said that the Obama stimulus was insufficient.  So how is it that noted economists like Krugman and Roubini had enough information to come out and say that the Obama plan wouldn’t be enough?  How can the President of the United States have incomplete information? It seems that the truth lies more in Joe’s words – they just didn’t realize how bad things were – despite being told how bad things were by these preeminent economists.  In other words they chose not to listen to Krugman and Roubini. I wonder who they did listen to? Geithner? Bernanke? Summers? In any event, they got it wrong and the time has come to correct it.

Now of course the Republican Party has a different opinion.  The are more or less saying, “See, we told you a stimulus wouldn’t work”.  Their plan is to  just  remove all the rules, regulations, and taxes from businesses and restart a free for all economy with no rules – the sort of thing created by Clinton and Bush that created the worldwide meltdown.   Here’s an analogy: let’s suppose your house is on fire and the Obama Fire Department arrives with garden hoses. They spray water on the fire but it doesn’t go out.  Then the Republicans show up – not the Republican Fire Department (because they don’t have one), just a bunch of gawkers who hang around sniggering and making comments like, “See, we knew you can’t put out a fire with water!!  That’s why we don’t even try!  Say, why not try gasoline? That might work!”  The thing is this: we need firehoses, not garden hoses.  It’s a big fire.  Joe was right.  So was Krugman and Roubini. Obama needs to admit it.  They thought unemployment would peak at 8%.  It didn’t. We’ll probably break through to 10% unemployment within a month.  It could go a lot higher.  Meanwhile only 10% of the stimulus money has even been spent. Do I detect a certain lack of understanding here? The house is on Fire!! Break out the firehoses and put the fire out!!  Now!!

Meanwhile, perhaps the Republican “Fire Department” could just step back and keep out of the way. If you’re not part of the solution then you are part of the problem, and we don’t have the time or the luxury to start playing politics while our economy continues to go up in smoke.  I’m glad Joe Biden gets it. He needs to have a talk with President Obama – a Joe Biden kind of talk – and let him know, in no uncertain terms, that we don’t need finesse right now. We don’t need to calculate the exact cost of the remedy and then determine not to spend a penny more.  What we need is Stimulus Part II – and this time, let’s use the firehoses.

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Dear Barack,

I’ve noticed that you are now just about neck and neck with John McCain and I imagine that is sort of a scary thing for you. It is for me too. So, I thought I might share a couple of ideas with you on how you (we) can counter the Palin bump. That’s what it is you know – a bump. Ever since Sarah joined the ticket everybody is coming out to see Johnny; before that he was lucky to get three guys and a mule to attend one of his boring Town Hall meetings. But wait, Barack, there’s the clue!  See where I’m going yet?

OK.  You know how the other day your Vice Presidential candidate – what was his name again? Oh, yes.  Senator Biden, right. Well, Senator Biden was talking to a group of people and he made the (to me anyway) very intriguing comment that Hillary Clinton was not only qualified to be president or vice-president, but she was probably even MORE qualified that he was! Did you hear that? Yeah, it was on TV and everything. Well, I got to thinking about that and, you know, that may not be a bad idea.  Here’s what I would do: somewhere along the line, but not too far down the line, you have Senator Biden announce that he just can’t go on with this charade any more because he knows in his heart that he is not the right person to be VP. Then he says he is dropping out and says he hopes you will find someone better qualified than him. Follow me so far? OK.

Then you say a lot of nice things about ol’ Joe and then you make the surprise announcement that Hillary is now your vice presidential nominee! Great idea, huh? In fact, just to have maximum effect, you could announce this whole thing that day before the vice presidential candidates debate! Boy, I’ll bet that would make Sarah drop her AK47. Think of it. Then it would be Hillary against Sarah and you against Johnny. It’s a sure win and by doing this just before the debate it will be too late for Johnny to try to copy you and dump Sarah! You’ll be almost guaranteed to win!

But wait. I have another idea.  Look, first of all, you have to stop beginning all your sentences with “Look”. See, it sort of implies that I’m not paying attention to you – but I am! Or, maybe it sort of implies that you are superior to me or something and you’re sort of ordering me around saying “Look!” Look at what? See what I mean? Just start your sentences in a regular sort of way without always saying, “Look”.  OK? Good. Now hold on. That’s not my idea. I just wanted to squeeze in a little speaking advice for you. Here’s idea number two:

Look, taxes are a big issue and you’re just not cashing in on the subject (please excuse the pun).  Johnny says you are going to raise taxes and I know you have a formula where the lower income people will actually have a tax decrease and the rich people will pay more taxes, but it’s too complicated for some people to understand (no, really. It is.)  And Johnny is having a field day with his distortions of your position and a lot of people fall for that, not realizing that Johnny is leading them straight into tax Hell.  So, I have a plan – a simplified plan – a plan that is so easy to understand that even a redneck idiot (I’m sorry, is it politically incorrect to call them idiots? Should I have said mentally challenged or something?) could figure it out in a split second, and it’s also pretty much guaranteed to win you the election all by itself! Interested? I thought so.  Read on…

My new tax plan is based upon a simple concept (this is just between you and me) called the median American income. In case you weren’t paying attention in the fifth grade when Mrs. O’Leary was explaining the difference between a median and an average, median means the halfway point.  In other words, if I tell you that the median American income is $50,000, that means half of the U.S. population makes more than that and half makes less. Pretty simple concept, right?  As it turns out the median American income is just about $50,000, maybe a little more, but not much. If you look at the number of people who make less than $100,000 you will find there’s way more than half the population in that crowd.  I don’t know the exact number, but I’m guessing it must be at least 75% of the total American population.

OK. Now, I have to take a moment to give credit to the inspiration for my idea. His name is Willie Sutton.  In case you haven’t heard of him, Willie was a notorious bank robber back in the 1920s and 1930s. While he was in jail (he spent a lot of time in jail) he was interviewed by a reporter who wrote that he asked Willie, “Why do you rob banks?” Willie famously replied, “Because that’s where the money is.”  Willie later denied he ever made that statement, which was a dumb thing to do because it’s really the only thing he’s famous for.

Anyway, if you start thinking along Willie’s line there and how it could apply to taxes you pretty quickly come to the conclusion that if you are the government and you need to raise money you should tax the rich “because that’s where the money is”. Makes sense right? Yeah, it’s actually obvious when you think about it. So, here’s the plan: you state a new, simplified tax policy if you are elected. The policy says that people who make less than $100,000 a year will pay NO INCOME TAX.  None. Zip. Nada. Zero. This would be about 75% of the population, as I already said. People who make more that $100,000 will pay a bunch more than they used to. In fact the tax rate will be determined by how much money the government needs but it’ll be a graduated rate. Maybe the people who make only $101,000 will pay a 30% tax while those who make over 50 million will pay a 50% tax, and those who make over a billion will pay  90% tax. No forms to fill out or anything – just do the calculation and send the money in. I’ll let you figure out the details.  I figure the government can easily rake in as much money this way as it does now, and hey, these rich people can afford it too, right?

But here’s the beauty of the idea: 75% of the people will be overjoyed and are guaranteed to vote for you!  They don’t pay any taxes at all under your plan!!!  On the other hand, 25% of the people will be mad as Hell, of course. But who cares? You win! And even better, John McCain can’t steal the idea like he stole your “Change” thing. Think about it. If he tried to take this and turn it around so only the poorest 25% of the people paid taxes the country would go bankrupt in about three days, because they don’t have any money! The Republicans can never do this!! They will hate it, but you will win by a landslide!

Well, Barack, there you have it: a couple of surefire ways to win the election. What do you think? Pretty good, huh?  No, no, no. Don’t thank me….. I’m just here to help.

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