Romney needs to call Obama’s Bluffet….

 

We know that the Bluffet, sorry Buffet, rule is a motif for President’s class warfare, and more warning shots will be fired when Congress returns today from a two-week recess to a test vote on the rule, which would impose a minimum 30 percent tax rate on income over $1 million. The Bluffett tax targets wealthier Americans’ investments rather than salaries.

Today is the day when this issue of class warfare kicks off for November in earnest, now that we know it will be Romney for the GOP and Congress gets to have a say on the matter.

President Obama, who pays less tax than HIS secretary (he filed tax returns showing he paid an effective tax rate of 20.5 percent on income of about $800,000 in 2011) says the government needs the revenue from the Bluffett rule, estimated at $47 billion over 10 years, to cover “a broad range of goals.” He also says “This is not just about fairness.” Well, he got that right, it is very unfair, but not in the simplistic moralistic way he is peddling.

He says “This is also about growth. It’s about being able to make the investments we need to strengthen our economy and create jobs. And it’s about whether we as a country are willing to pay for those investments.” In other words, robbing Peter to pay Paul.

Fact is, do we really need government to do the investing, and where does the investment go? Into government black holes and deep pockets, rather than into businesses which create wealth. The Bluffet tax would not create wealth, it would merely enhance dependency. We would see a better rate of return on the $47 billion in business investment by the wealthy than we would from government. That is an awful lot of liquidity to take out of the markets, and I don’t see too many secretaries taking up the slack.

Of course, keeper of the Treasury keys Tim Geithner was out pushing the rule on Sunday, “Just because Republicans oppose this does not mean it’s not the right thing to do and not the right thing to push for,” he told NBC’s “Meet the Press” program. Double negatives aside, we can say that just because Democrats think it is the right thing to do doesn’t mean it even begins to make sense.

If we look at the paying side of this, we see the rich targeted for this end up paying more. Simple. But for what are they paying? Increased revenue means increased expenditure, and so the things for government to spend on expands to meet the expanded revenue. More programs, more dependency and less reward for effort. What does the payer get in return? They get little benefit, and the wealthier they are the less they need what they are paying for.

Which means the sole purpose of the Bluffet rule is twofold, increased state powers and redistribution of wealth. Conservatives who attack Romney or the rich for their wealth are playing with the same deck as Obama.

Obama says, “If you make more than $1 million every year, you should pay at least the same percentage of your income in taxes as middle-class families do… Most Americans support this idea. We just need some Republican politicians to get on board with where the country is.” Of course, Obama doesn’t have to worry too much about his investments, because after leaving office, which cannot come soon enough, he will make a ton of cash for the remainder of his days. He doesn’t have too much to worry about…The rest of us do.

Where is America’s Fighting Spirit? Ending the Malaise Presidency

These days it seems Captain America has been overpowered by MalaiseMan. President Obama is MalaiseMan. He told a fundraiser on Tuesday, October 25 that America is in decline, which is the central theme of his presidency. People are buying it too, which is what the Occupy Wall Street movement and Tea Party is a symptom of; they are two sides of a coin that says America is in decline.

More MalaiseMan than Captain America

This takes us back to the evening of July 15, 1979. Gas prices had skyrocketed, there were severe shortages and the endless economic decline seemed much longer than the lineups at gas stations. Carter preached, “In a nation that was proud of hard work, strong families, close-knit communities and our faith in God, too many of us now tend to worship self-indulgence and consumption. Human identity is no longer defined by what one does but by what one owns.”

We have heard similar malaise from President Obama. In fact, where Carter spent hours and days at Camp David in what Reagan biographer Steven Hayward tagged “the most remarkable exercise in presidential navel-gazing in American history” and delivered his message in minutes, President Obama decided in minutes and is spending days and hours preaching malaise.

It is being believed on the streets. The Hill newspaper reports that over two-thirds of voters say the United States is declining, and the next generation will be worse off, with 83 percent of voters worried about the future of the nation. Their results conclude that Americans don’t view the country’s current economic and political troubles as temporary; they see this decline as stretching out for years.

President Obama’s policies tap into the malaise, which is why he has managed an economy of decline, failing on jobs, the deficit, healthcare, home foreclosures and rising gas prices.

However, there are signs of improvement. Economic growth in America picked up in the last quarter, showing signs of some recovery as the nation’s total output of goods and services grew at an annual rate of 2.5 percent from July to September, almost double the 1.3 percent rate in the previous quarter.

This is because the economy has its own laws of gravity: what goes down will get back up again. The economy does this, not the government. We have become so risk averse we want the nanny state to kiss us better every time the economy hurts us. The President Obama re-election campaign is one of kissing everyone better, what is the Republican message?

Ronald Reagan defeated Carter by offering Americans a vision that was so optimistic it cancelled out Carter’s pessimism. The economy will improve, and a Republican needs to get the message across that America will return to full strength with a gleam of defiance in its eye, not a tear of pity. Which candidate can do this? Which candidate can bring on Captain America to defeat MalaiseMan?

The Polarizing Truth. Why Republicans should nominate a divider instead of a unifier.

Bookmark and Share    If you’re like many Americans, it’s too early to be thinking about the presidential contest next year. Even if you are aware of some of the candidates running, chances are you’re not glued to the set watching the early debates. Wednesday’s MSNBC sponsored GOP debate was interesting though. I managed to catch a few minutes of it and although I thought Romney was particularly sharp and Rick Perry made a very good case as a solid conservative, it was clear why the current field leaves something to be desired among many in the Republican Party. A former George W. Bush speechwriter said this past weekend that “I don’t think Republicans regard this as a strong field. So there is still talk of people getting in the race.” 

Let’s forget all the conventional reasons why there is a lack of excitement from the current cadre of presidential hopefuls. Romney has a problem effectively discussing the failings of Obama-care given his own health care bill in Massachusetts, add to that his 59 point economic plan…59 points? I’m worried there might be a test at the end! Governor Perry, although articulating many strong conservative principles, has the challenge of the latest critique of his Texas job creation efforts through government subsidies and ‘poaching’ from other states; there’s Bachman’s lack of executive experience and Ron Paul’s difficulty overcoming the fringe label among many voters. Gingrich, Huntsman, Santorum and Cain round out the field but lack funding and have thus far failed to light a spark among earlier likely primary voters. 

Despite the short-comings of the top-tier, they may all be able to put up an effective fight simply based on the current economy and the President’s own poor performance. Mishandling the economic crisis; the deepening of unemployment and under-employment; vast expanse of government beyond what it palatable for the average taxpayer; and out-of-control debt have all contributed to a general lack of enthusiasm for his re-election in recent polls. That said the GOP is very skilled at the art of snatching defeat out of the jaws of victory.

Only a candidate with the courage to polarize the electorate on the issues and present a stark contrast with the Democratic incumbent will win. We need someone to unapologetically pursue a new policy course focused on economic growth and individual liberty in order to win.

The first step is to challenge the conventional wisdom that our nominee needs to be a conciliator and a unifier instead of a polarizer by looking at the facts of history. There are plenty of successful Presidents who ran in the center and then governed from their partisan corner. Then there are a few who campaigned from a solid partisan position, specifically outlining an enemy, who won decisive victories.

President Reagan, President George W. Bush and President Clinton were highly partisan political leaders creating vehement opposition from the other side. Each had the polarizing effect of a wide gap between the support of members of their own party and the lack of support among voters in the other party as they entered the second year in office. See Poll Results

And each were winners of a second term because they appealed to the core of their own party and created enough momentum to show strong leadership on the issue of the day which won over the average voter who only pays attention at the end.

Obama, like his predecessors, has embraced the role of polarizer-in-chief as he knows that his success is dependent on his aggressive far-left agenda energizing the core of the Democratic base. As long as he offers some hope for a recovery and continues to redistribute your wealth he’s got a good shot at keeping the job.

That same zeal on the side of individual liberty and economic growth is the only way for a Republican challenger to have a chance of unseating this administration. Why is it that the Democrats are unafraid to be aggressive champions of their big government ideology while Republicans more often look for a middle ground thinking that they will appeal to everyone? Democrats like Obama and Clinton understood the value of the base and the importance of ‘dividing and conquering’ the electorate. Bush understood that as well when he stood for re-election in 2004 and certainly President Reagan understood the value when he used divisive terms like ‘welfare queens’ and ‘evil empire’.

Perhaps the best model to view for the upcoming election are the three Presidents who, in addition to causing divisiveness while in office, actually campaigned successfully by exploiting a major issue of the day and defining a clear position outlining the ‘enemy’.

Abraham Lincoln took a strong anti-slavery position and campaigned on stopping its expansion. His position was so strong the half the states threatened to secede if he won and then followed through. 1860 Campaign

Franklin Roosevelt ran a campaign pointing the finger at the ‘economic royalists’ and laid out a very effective populist campaign that defined the enemy as greedy businessmen and changed the country in a direction that set up the great expanse of government today. 1936 Speech

Ronald Reagan campaigned as a strong anti-communist defining the foreign enemy effectively and readying the nation to capitalize on their weak economic position. He also effectively defined the domestic enemy as government itself. 1980 Campaign

All of these men faced defining moments in American history, the Civil War, The Great Depression and the Cold War respectively. America is again confronted with a generational crisis that will have a resonating impact for decades to come.

The economic crisis today is beyond the dreadful employment numbers and slow growth. It encompasses the vast expanse of government that has put our nation perilously close to the tipping point of having more Americans taking from the government than paying to sustain it. If that happens and the Democrats feel secure knowing that entitlement benefit receivers outnumber working, taxpaying Americans, don’t expect a conciliatory or unifying tone from the other side.

Current polling shows that the economy and jobs is and will likely continue to be the number one issue heading into the next Presidential election. With nearly one in ten Americans out of work and another nearly one in ten working at a job that is insufficient to sustain a modest family’s standard of living, we’re in serious trouble.

The Democratic solution – which unfortunately has been aided and abetted by some weak, compromising Republicans in Washington – is to spend more of your tax dollars through new ‘stimulus’ spending – err sorry, just saw the White House talking points – it’s now ‘jobs’ spending. We’ve seen the failure of increased government spending under the current administration as well as the last Republican administration.  Not only is this an economically ruinous course to take, but every dollar the government spends to ‘create jobs’ is not wealth created, it’s a dollar redistributed by coercion. Of course the American people are starting to ‘get it’ and the anger that is growing among taxpayers regarding the over-reach and failure of these policies is becoming palpable. Many Americans seem ready to fire the President but simply won’t replace him with someone who will be perceived to do more of the same.

It’s one reason that Governor Christie is talked about as a potential top contender. His brash style, aggressive decision making and willingness to take on tough fights has some Democrats in New Jersey speaking positively about his administration around the water cooler. There hasn’t been a more successful polarizing figure in recent New Jersey history than Governor Christie. He hasn’t taken on the role of chief conciliator with the teachers and public workers unions. He’s stepped up and taken on the role of chief agitator and walked away with several key victories for the taxpayers. Christie’s success is contrary to conventional wisdom about reconciling and being palatable to the other side. He’s a fighter pure and simple and is earning the respect of former foes because of his unapologetic style and aggressive pursuit of solving problems. He’s a straight talker who isn’t posturing for image and acceptance. Instead he’s going for the jugular of those forces that are bankrupting the state and destroying the economic future for the next generation.

If it’s working in a blue state like New Jersey, where Democrats outnumber Republicans by a nearly two-to-one margin, it can certainly work in swing states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, Ohio, Florida and New Hampshire where the registration numbers are much closer. Although a more moderate, conciliatory Republican may fare better in states like New Jersey, we’re likely to lose those states and do worse than expected in the swing states unless we energize the folks who are suffering the most with the current economy. The game plan in 2012 can’t be to earn the respect and admiration of the Democrats who will vote against us anyway. We need to be on the right side of history and champion the free market ideas that are the only way to create a robust and productive economy -and secure our future liberty.

 This is not the time to play nice with the side who has levied on us the highest tax and debt burden in our history. This is not the time to play nice with the leaders on the other side whose agenda is not economic growth and freedom but the destruction of the very core of our capitalist system. Big government and debt are the goals of the other side. It’s time to take a stand and choose sides.

 Of course Governor Christie has emphatically repeated that he is not going to be a candidate in 2012. Given his track record, I think it’s a safe bet to take him at his word. Without Governor Christie there is only one other Republican leader with the same style of tough talk and conservative record with the ability to deliver the message and energize the party as we haven’t seen since Ronald Reagan, former governor Sarah Palin. Her Iowa speech recently was an outright attack on the ‘crony capitalists’ who are turning profits with the aid of the taxpayers. She’s correctly stated that these are not champions of capitalism creating growth in the economy – instead they are parasites earning a living off of government bailouts and subsidies. Palin rightly attacks those businesses which have benefited from tax loopholes and redistributed wealth from taxpayers. She’s got a long history of success with her aggressive style challenging conventional wisdom and fighting entrenched government. She’s taken on the tough fights in her own party and won. Her leadership and decision making helped create a strong economy in Alaska. She’s rooted out corruption and stood firm in the face of criticism and every kind of vitriol thrown her way. She’s got executive and life experience necessary to be an effective commander-in-chief. Family values, patriotism and an unapologetic approach to supporting our military and putting the interest of America first in the world.

 The country needs leadership, and we’re overdue for a tough talking sheriff not afraid to act who will get to Washington and clean up the mess left by years of apologetic and weak Republicans and big government Democrats.

Palin is already a champion of the right policies that will restore a growth economy nationally creating sustainable employment and revenue. She’s got the courage, conviction and charisma necessary to polarize the electorate enough to win.

 The good news is that Americans are slowly waking up from the Obama-induced slumber that allowed government to explode overnight and not especially pleased with what they see.

 We cannot fear standing up and aggressively fighting those political elites that would ruin our economy and create the ‘shared scarcity’ that Congressman Paul Ryan warned of in a speech in Chicago a few months ago. We cannot fear stepping up to the plate with a contentious, strong willed, leader to articulate the position of the taxpayer who is on the hook for the debt and the future liability of a nation of dependents. Instead we should embrace the opportunity and select a nominee who will be unafraid to champion the free market…unafraid to put American interests first…unafraid to take the beating that will surely come from the political and media elite.

 Time to fight…are you ready?

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