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Poll: Americans Back Democratic Positions On Jobs, Guns

Memo Pad Politics

Poll: Americans Back Democratic Positions On Jobs, Guns


According to a new Morning Joe/Marist poll, Americans overwhelmingly favor the Democratic approach to managing the economy and toughening gun laws.

The poll finds that 64 percent believe that creating jobs should be Congress and President Obama’s top priority, while just 33 percent agree with the Republican position that reducing the federal budget deficit is paramount.

Furthermore, when asked how they believe the deficit should be reduced, 42 percent agree with President Obama’s position that we should both cut spending and increase revenues, while 35 percent believe that we should primarily increase revenues, and just 17 percent agree with House Republicans that deficit reduction should come mostly through spending cuts.

Although Republicans have repeatedly asserted that new tax revenue should be off the table as a result of the fiscal cliff deal that raised taxes on family income above $450,000, the American public does not agree. Just 18 percent say that the January tax increase makes them less likely to support reducing the deficit by limiting tax deductions on high income, while 22 percent say it makes them more likely, while 56 percent say it makes no difference to their opinion.

Despite Americans’ sharp disapproval of the GOP’s policy proposals, President Obama only leads the GOP 44 to 40 percent on the question of who has a better approach to dealing with the deficit. This result helps to explain Democrats’ determination to tie Republicans to the specifics of Paul Ryan’s budget plan, which would drastically reduce spending while providing tax cuts to wealthy Americans.

The poll also found that Americans back stronger gun safety regulations. Although some pundits have speculated that the voters are losing interest in the issue as the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting recedes further from the headlines, the Morning Joe/Marist poll finds that support for new regulations is almost unchanged from Marist’s previous polls.

Legislation that would require background checks for private gun sales and gun shows is supported by 87 percent, while just 12 percent oppose it. Additionally, 59 percent support legislation that would ban the sale of assault weapons, with 37 percent opposing it.

Overall, 60 percent believe that gun laws should be more strict, while 33 percent say they should be kept as they are now, and 5 percent say they should be made more lenient. Notably, there is a huge partisan split on this question; 83 percent of Democrats support tougher regulations, compared to just 37 percent of Republicans. So as long as the House majority is held by Republicans from overwhelming Republican districts, passing any meaningful new gun laws through the lower chamber will be an uphill battle.

The full results of the poll can be seen here.

AP Photo/Charles Dharapak


Henry Decker

Henry Decker was formerly the Managing Editor of The National Memo. He is currently an Online Associate at MRCampaigns.

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  1. Canistercook April 3, 2013

    If they really want jobs I wonder why we have so many illegal workers here all earning a living?

    1. karinursula April 3, 2013

      Yes, doing jobs that the Americans don’t want.

      1. whodatbob April 3, 2013

        You stated the problem. Out of work Americans think they are too good for the meinal job. These unemployed Americans are not wlling to put on a tin beek and pick shit with the chickens. I’ve done that several times when between jobs.
        They would rather save their pride and bitch about all the illegals.

      2. Canistercook April 3, 2013

        Then perhaps they should be willing to do them instead of collecting welfare and unemployment.

        1. whodatbob April 3, 2013

          You just gave the million dollar answer!

          1. Canistercook April 4, 2013

            Unfortunately those that need to heed it are not listening!

  2. I understand about the guns. They should be very concerned, but a jobs plan?

    More bullshit like “Affordable Health Care”.

  3. Mike Smith April 3, 2013

    The out of touch are ones that want Obama to produce the jobs. I guess they are unmotivated to know the reason why jobs will be tough to find until 2015. The reason for such slow to no-growth are policies of this administration. It is anti-business, EPA has added $353 billion new regulations, HHS- 184 billion, FCC-142 billion, all incurring unnecessary costs thus slowing or destroying growth. EPA has 88,852 specific regulatory restrictions. Many of our most successful business trying to start now would not even get their doors open, ex: Home Depot.

    As most people know, one must look at the poll, #’s, questions, etc..
    The more this country is taxed the less for the private expansion, less jobs, more for the govt. to waste. The senate budget that took 4 years to come up with is full of taxes with 82 billion a year less for business investment which also adds up to 853,000 less jobs.
    Sadly, most of the people that read National Memo have no clue what is really happening in the economy.

    1. johninPCFL April 3, 2013

      That explains why every segment of the economy is growing but government and construction, huh? The tech sector is running at 4% unemployment, requiring the hiring of the chronically unemployed just to get the work done.
      Yes the EPA is now saying you pollute, you clean it up. That’s $353B in “be responsible and clean up your own shit”. I’m OK with that.

    2. montanabill April 3, 2013

      Well stated, Mike.

    3. Independent1 April 3, 2013

      Your comment: “the more this country is taxed the less for the private expansion, less jobs” Really doesn’t hold water. Bill clinton raised taxes in 1993 and more jobs were created in the next 8 years and the economy was the best in American history. Believing that raising taxes puts a crimp on business is total nonsense. And if you think America is overtaxed your also clueless. Tax revenues are at the lowest levels in 60 years as is non military/non entitlement spending. If you think America is over taxed, then the rest of the world must be super overtaxed because without question, given the enormous number of tax loopholes in our tax laws, America is by far the least taxed industrial nation on the planet. Here’s a list of the tax rates paid by folks in other nations in Europe and Wesern Asia: Keep in mind most all these nations have not only an income tax but a value added tax similar to Canada and generally no loopholes that allow millionaires to get away with zero taxes and most of them to average tax rates below 15% if they pay income taxes at all:

      Income Tax Rates
      Of Most European Countries
      And their Value Added Taxes

      Austria – 50% + 20%
      Bulgaria -10% + 20%
      Croatia – 40% + 25%
      Cyprus – 35% + 17%
      Czech Rep – 15% + 21%
      Denmark – 55.4% + 25%
      Estonia – 21% + 20%
      Finland – 53% + 24%
      France – 75% + 17.6%
      Germany – 45% + 19%
      Georgia – 12% + 19%
      Greece – 45% + 23%
      Hungary – 16% + 27%
      Ireland – 41% -+ 23%
      Italy – 45% + 21%
      Latvia – 23% + 21%
      Liechtenstein – 17.89% + 8%
      Luxembourg – 38.95% +15%
      Malta – 35% + 18%
      Netherlands – 52% + 21%
      Norway – 54.3% + 25%
      Poland – 32% + 23%
      Portugal – 46>5% + 23%
      Romania + 16% + 24%
      Russia – 13% + 18%
      Slovakia – 19% + 20%
      Slovenia – 41% + 20%
      Spain – 52% + 21%
      Sweden – 56.6% + 25%
      Switzerland – 45.5% + 8%
      Turkey 35% + 18%
      Ukraine – 17% + 20%
      United Kingdom – 45% + 20%
      U.S. – 39.6% + ?

    4. Mark McKennon April 3, 2013

      Well, then, Mike the parties that don’t want regulations and government supervision should take it upon themselves to behave and do the right thing. Then they won’t need supervision and regulations.
      From 2001 to 2008 banksters flouted, skirted or ignored regulations and ethics. Where did that get us? Matter of fact, the SEC was UNDERfunded and UNDERstaffed, so the UNDERregulated shenanigans (in collusion with government and others) built up a good head of steam and wound up nearly bankrupting the nation. Thanks for that. Oil behemoths didn’t want regulations. Result: BP gushing into the Gulf and numerous spills and incidents since. For years, coal power plants skirted and avoided regulatory rulings, refusing to abide by EPA standards, and fighting the fines for their non-compliant behavior. Result: filthy air in major cities and a big spike in asthma, heart disease, etc. Thanks for that.
      Now the Obama admin imposes regulations to help us and YOU COMPLAIN.
      Sure, I’d much prefer a smaller and less and far less intrusive and expensive government. I don’t care if it’s 100 people running the show. They should, however, be perfectly ethical and hyperefficient. You know, every one a clone of Commander Data from Star Trek, working 24/7 and incorruptible.
      Absent that — what people DEMAND IN RETURN are corporations that play by the rules and actually give a s*** about the society in which they operate. Otherwise, I don’t care if the EPA and the SEC and the FTC has 10 TIMES THE REGULATIONS. EAT IT. Since when does reducing regulations increase jobs? And if so, what is the true cost to society? Millions more ailing, an environment gone to shit, and corporations ripping off the public by the 100s of BILLIONS? NO THANK YOU.

  4. Dominick Vila April 3, 2013

    I guess I am one of the 64% who believe economic growth, focused on job creation, must be Washington’s top priority. Reducing the deficit, our tendency to borrow to pay for what we need and benefit from, and the subsequent accumulation of debt is very important and should not be ignored, but fiscal integrity means little when people are unemployed or underemployed.
    Unfortunately, after decades of neglecting our infrastructure and R&D, wasting trillions in crusades and sophisticated weapons we need like a hole in the head, giving subsidies to profitable companies, refusing to eliminate loopholes that never help the middle class or the poor, and letting Wall Street get away with financial murder, we now find ourselves in a real conundrum.
    Most of us know that the only option, at a time when the private sector is more interested in investing their substantial capital overseas to maximize profits than at home, the only alternative is public sector investment to stimulate the economy, encourage private sector investment, achieve economic stability and growth, and create jobs. The problem is that for many Americans, and many of our elected officials, investing is tantamount to spending and, therefore, it is something totally incompatible with their goals. The way forward must include educating the public on what ails our economy and what must be done to achieve economy stability and job creation. The last thing we need at this time is an Angela Merkel style austerity program.

    1. whodatbob April 3, 2013

      Every thing in your post is correct. But, how many of the unemployed would not participate because they earned a degree or two and these jobs are beneith their status in life.

      1. Dominick Vila April 4, 2013

        Investment in infrastruture entails a lot more than laying asphalt on a crumbling road. Our power grid needs to be replaced with a more efficient and reliable system, our ports and airports need to be modernized, more efficient and stronger levees must be built to protect low areas and to provide irrigation at a time when global warming threatens farm lands and the availability of potable water. There are plenty of opportunities for professionals such as engineers, architects, and others.
        Part of our problem is that many of our young are choosing liberal arts careers at a time when demand is focused mostly in technical fields and hard science, but that’s a topic for a different thread.

        1. whodatbob April 4, 2013

          Yes, but in times of unemployment throughout my professional career I worked as the carry out boy at a liquor store, gofor for a handyman, cut lawns, anything to keep busy. Most of the other laied off professionals in those times would not take those jobs because that was below their status. When all the professional positions are filled will the degreed people not selected be willing to take jobs as unskilled labor. Most will let their pride get in the way and pass.

          1. Burzghash April 4, 2013

            Considering the bigger issue right now is the fact that most employers are expecting unreasonably high skill levels (more so than what the job actually requires), for unreasonably low pay, I wouldn’t take those jobs either. I’d keep finding something which pays at least what the job is worth, which is getting harder and harder as the type of jobs the majority of Americans depend on (middle skill/middle pay) are rapidly disappearing in this recession.

          2. whodatbob April 4, 2013

            A job is worth what it pays. Simple supply and demand, Skill level is a commody if supply is low and demand is high price for skill level is high, if it other way around high supply low demand price is low. We are in a high supply, many out of work highly skilled workers, low demand, for skills of out unemployed workers.
            With coroprate America consolidating and sending skilled jobs off shore do not look for a turn around in this area for a long time.
            As low skill union jobs were sent off shore we cheered because it ment less expensive products for us to buy. Our jobs were safe we were educated, we had a sheepskin and advanced degrees. Wake up people we are being replaced by computers and educated workers who can replace us for ten cents on the dollar.
            In the past when each applicant had multipal offers he was able to get the most for his skills. In current market each opportunity has fifty to hundred + applicants the employer is able to get the most skills for the least pay.

          3. rustacus21 April 5, 2013

            … by replacing those freeloading conservatives (in next years MidTerms) means work will get done in Congress. People MUST realize this isn’t some TV reality show. This is real life & austerity is NO JOKE. Ask the Greeks, Spaniards, Irish, Italians, Brits, etc. Had they ALL listened to Germany & France – who, coincidentally, refused to be sucked in by Wall St. gamblers – they’d be in much better economic shape now. But U’r rite; the jobs have to be significant & aimed at the markets of “tomorrow”, if we hope to still lead in both tech & Democracy. Failure at any 1 of the 2 spells the type of doom conservatives are even at this moment, BETTING UPON!!! Help us Liberal/Progressives make liars out of them, save this nation & lock their A@$es out of government for another 40 years so the nation & world can have a chance to heal & get chance to live life above water. On solid ground, in fact…

          4. I went to china where they pay me triple what I make in the US. Plus, they actually respect people. I am glad to pay China income tax. At least it goes for something other than new atom bombs and jets.

          5. whodatbob April 4, 2013

            Why didn’t you stay?

          6. Barbara Morgan April 6, 2013

            Want to bet on that? If the pay is so great why do they house workers in work places that looks like a prison camp with fences around it with that the razor type of wire on the top of it and have armed guards in watch towers and on the grounds at all times. Why aren’t the Chinese workers allowed to go home at night instead of having to sleep in over crowded dorm style buildings on the work place? The taxes you paid while in China went straight to the Red Chinese Army because they control the Country and are partners with every American Company that has moved jobs to China and get somelike 50% or more ownership of these companies. So while you were working in China and being treated with real well and paid well, how many citizens of the Country were lying on dirt floors starving to death because the ones in Charge was selling the food raised to feed the Chinese to other Countries and spenting it on atomic bombs, naval ships and fighter jets. If things were so great there why didn’t you stay and help them make more money so they do their underhanded spying and disregarding the patent laws of other Countries and manufactoring goods that they are suppose to be paying tor the right to manufactor but don’t

        2. Another problem is our colleges are turning out “highly educated” idiots.

          I sure wish jobs were a priority instead of tax cuts for the wealthy, a failed health care concept, bailing out the banks, bailing out the mortgage companies, bailing out the states due to low tax revenue which is what the “stimulus” was used for, tax breaks for the oil companies, immigration rights, gun rights, marriage rights, dog licences and finally, JOBS!

      2. ralphkr April 4, 2013

        I know a number of people with masters who are unable to get a job BECAUSE of their advanced education. They apply for all sorts of jobs but managers with lower paying jobs to offer shall not hire them because managers know that the minute a job commensurate with their education opens that my friends shall immediately jump ship.

        1. whodatbob April 4, 2013

          I hear that all the time, may half the time it true the restof the time it is a save face excuese. After retireing from a fourty + year career in accounting and sitting around for a couple months I began looking for part time work, went to a temp agency told the people I was looking for entry level accounting work. I flunked the data entry test. I had never been a data entry clerk. Now accountants enter the data into computres. I was now out dated.

          1. ralphkr April 4, 2013

            I should have been more specific. The people I know with advanced degrees are much younger than me (and you too bob) in their late 30s and 40s and out of work because their companies were bought by vulture capitalists (such as Bain) and the company either sucked dry or shipped off shore. I know that a few of them have found work by starting their own business (usually nothing to do with their academic training).

      3. Barbara Morgan April 6, 2013

        More than you think, because most of the people employed now days are under employed and they would jump at the chance to get any kind of better paying legal job that they can.

        1. whodatbob April 6, 2013

          Yes, one of my children with an MBA & BS in Finance did a stint in the Army because jobs in his field were unavailable. He is out has been running a Hasmat crew for a year.

    2. montanabill April 3, 2013

      Unfortunately Dominick, you have no real experience with the private sector. The only reason we invest substantial capital elsewhere is because that is where it will do the most good! That seems so obvious that it shouldn’t have to be noted. If you and the President and the Democrats want it invested in the U.S., change policy! Make it attractive once again to invest in American. Money does not follow altruism. It follows opportunity and profit. Always has. Always will. Government spending more money that it doesn’t have, cannot now, or ever, change the direction of the economy. Taking more money from the productive simply tells them that they are not wanted for any useful purpose other than to fund deficiency.

      At the end of the day (I hate that phrase), our only choice will be an austerity program, simply because we have refused to be even partially prudent for many years. Austerity, when it comes, and it must, will be our own fault.

      1. WhutHeSaid April 3, 2013

        While it’s true that Republican policies have ballooned the deficit, it’s also true that repeatedly poking ourselves in the eye with that sharp stick isn’t the solution. Huge tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans has never helped anyone except the wealthiest Americans. The GOP spend-fest of the last decade is now over, so we need to make sure we don’t repeat those mistakes.

        Austerity doesn’t help grow the economy, which is the only way that we are ever going to climb out of the hole that the Republicans (once again) have put us in. All of America is tired of hearing the TALK about fiscal responsibility from Republicans — they never back up the talk, and are hands-down the champions of runaway federal spending.

        We may need some belt-tightening, yes, but we also need to remember that America did just fine at the Clinton tax rates. There is no reason that we can’t start infrastructure projects, which will not only help with employment now but will help grow the economy and better position America to be more competitive in the future. We need to eliminate tax loopholes for the fat-cats and oil companies who have been making out like bandits for years.

        The term ‘productive’ is NOT synonymous with ‘greedy’. Bill Gates is productive. Charles and David Koch are greedy. Learn the difference.

        1. montanabill April 4, 2013

          That damn Geo. Bush must still be in power, because the deficits are still ballooning.

          Here’s the fact, Whut, it isn’t a matter of whether we are facing austerity, it is a question only of when. And the longer we put off ‘when’, the worse it will be. We have long passed the stage of ‘belt tightening’.

          I appreciate your liking Clinton’s tax rates. Did you also like his spending rate? How about we go back to both? My tax rate has already gone back, plus a good deal more. Ready for your tax rate to go back and spending to return to his levels?

          P.S. You wouldn’t know a loophole from a telephone pole. You are just repeating nonsense.

          1. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

            While it’s true that Bush did make a real mess, the fact is that the deficit is SHRINKING now under Obama. This verifiable fact causes much distress among revisionists and those with ulterior motives (the greedy deadbeats among us), but ordinary Americans who actually care about America can take heart.

            Your claim that we face austerity is misguided — we only need face austerity due to Republican intransigence. Austerity will not grow an economy — never has and never will. Some belt-tightening is wise, yes, but that is achievable without austerity.

            There are plenty of those what-you-call ‘telephone poles’ still available for those who like to squawk ‘austerity!’ like some deranged parrot. Among these are oil and gas subsidies for companies now making record-breaking profits, capital gains rates for hedge fund managers’ incomes, and various fat-cat deductions (like personal jets) that have been enjoyed for too long.

            For those who like austerity — I say give it to them. For those who don’t (the majority of Americans) we can work on growing the economy — the only thing that will ever work to dig out of this Republican-made mess.

            Your endless complaining about paying your taxes is certainly not in line with your wish for austerity. Do you have problems putting food on the table for your family yet? Many Americans have just that. I’ll take your howls of protest as a sign that you believe in austerity for others, but not for yourself. America isn’t a plutocracy — Sorry ’bout your luck.

          2. montanabill April 4, 2013

            I will grant you that the increased taxes did make a dent in the deficit. However, it is still large and, though it dropped because of the taxes, it is continuing to grow from that position. That is verifiable. What’s more, it hasn’t even begun to be hit by the entitlement programs. When China’s bubble bursts,(here is a place you can do a little homework) they will stop loaning to us and start demanding repayment. Further, though the news media is quiet about it, we are experiencing inflation. Simply compare the prices for fuel and food with those of last year or two years ago. China will not wait to be repaid with a deflated currency.

            Austerity, when it comes and it will, will affect every single one of us. Government workers will lose jobs. Pensions will be decimated. Government purchasing will drop directly hurting hundreds of companies. The loss of jobs by those sectors will impact every other business. The sooner we get with the job of cutting real spending and reducing government’s impact on business, the less the overall impact will be. If we keep whistling by the graveyard, ignoring warnings from Europe, and keep insisting we can fund every single entitlement program either without changing anything or maybe simply making tweaks, the larger the impact will be when austerity no longer becomes a choice.

            Do a little research to see just how much money government could really expect from closing ‘fat-cat’ deductions? You are probably looking at one Obama vacation.

          3. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

            I’ll ignore your ‘Obama vacation’ comment because I know that you know better than to fall in with the birther crowd. Those are the types of comments that destroy your credibility, and I was under the impression that you are smarter than that. BTW, you didn’t mention Obama’s self-imposed 5% salary reduction. Do you send 5% of your salary back to the US Treasury?

            Warnings from Europe is exactly the point. Austerity across the pond has led to more recession, civil unrest, and government instability — not economic growth. The US has done much better by taking a balanced approach. Austerity measures have NEVER grown an economy, and it’s growth that we need now. The problem is that when we do get into an economic boom our politicians lose all inclination towards fiscal responsibility. I’m blaming BOTH parties here, but history shows us that the GOP is far and away the worst offender, with GW Bush being the poster boy for runaway federal spending — second only to Ronald (raise taxes 11 times, support gun control) Reagan.

          4. montanabill April 5, 2013

            No I didn’t send 5% back. Last year I sent 33% back and this year it will be upwards of 40%. How about you? By the way, it costs me about $75,000/yr for every $50,000/yr job I create. The increase means I won’t be creating 15 jobs additional jobs this year.

            You are right about the problems caused by austerity. People who feel entitled don’t like it when the largess stops. However, prior to austerity they were spending far more than they were taking in. You know, like another country you are familiar with. They found they couldn’t spend their way to prosperity and more than you or I can. When you spend money you don’t have, eventually the bill comes due. Hence, austerity. The U.S. has no exemption card.

            I won’t and don’t leave Bush out because he could have vetoed the foolish spending by his Democrat Congress. The wars were costly but a fraction compared to Obama’s spending. Not only has Obama spent more than every President combined before him, he has put into place programs that will continue to significantly grow the deficit/debt. The chief culprit: Obamacare..

          5. WhutHeSaid April 5, 2013

            Now you know I’m not talking about paying your bills — I’m talking about VOLUNTARY returns of after-tax income. Obama has imposed a 5% voluntary pay reduction on himself. How much do you VOLUNTARILY contribute to the country whose public benefits you have so ungratefully snorted up over the years?

            I’m so very confused: You claim to want austerity, yet you cry and moan when you have to pay a little more and make do with a little less. Is your family hungry yet, like the families that you wish to force austerity upon?

            You can’t blame Bush’s spending on the Democrat Congress. Giving tax cuts to everyone as a mechanism to gin up political support and starting unfunded wars costing multiple trillions was all Bush — not Congress.

            The PPACA (Obamacare) is an effort to correct the runaway cost and inefficiency of the US health care system with the added goal of improving quality and availability of care for all Americans. The US is the only major civilized country that didn’t already have some type of universal health care system for it’s citizens, and it was high time that the US addressed the problem. The results remain to be seen, but judging by the Massachusetts experiment it looks promising. That doesn’t mean that the law can’t be adjusted over time to correct any flaws.

            I’m sure that you have in mind the following austerity program:

            – If you are MontanaBill — lower taxes and increased benefits.
            – If you are not MontanaBill, austerity.
            – If you are MontanaBill, premium health care funded by government tax loopholes.
            – If you are not MontanaBill, no health care — please die quickly when sick.

            Sorry — it just isn’t going to work that way. Perhaps Antarctica is your most attractive option, where you can cultivate endless fields of successful businesses, with nary the need for government-supplied safety, infrastructure or consumers with the means to purchase your goods. Good luck.

          6. montanabill April 5, 2013

            My bill huh? Perhaps you would like to offer a reasonable explanation of why my bill for the same government everyone else gets, is orders of magnitude greater. Government didn’t give me any benefits that everyone didn’t get. In fact, for 50% of us, far less. In your mind, is that punishment for being ‘competitive’?

            Just a little correction. Bush’s tax cuts were providing increased revenue to the government until the spending hit.

            My austerity program:
            1. Reform the tax code to a simple one or two tiered flat tax and get rid of 90% of the IRS.
            2. Do a little combining of the 83 agencies now providing welfare benefits and make getting benefits dependent upon either being totally disabled or short term participation in job training programs that actually are designed to work. As hard as it may sound, quit supporting people who not only make bad decisions, but then expect someone else to bail them out.
            3. Create a balanced budget and make the employment cuts to get government back to a sustainable level commensurate with GDP.
            4. Dump Obamacare with its myriads of hidden taxes, 15,000+ pages of new regulations, new committees, departments, etc. It doesn’t and can’t do a single thing it was promoted to do. Create a reasonable replacement that a solid majority of Americans will approve of. Forget quality Universal Health Care. It is an urban myth, much like the Progressives’ and Socialists’ vision of Utopia.
            5. Remind everyone that SS and Medicare were designed to be ‘supplements’. Everyone was still to be primarily responsible for their own well being and those programs need to be returned to their roots.

          7. WhutHeSaid April 5, 2013

            Since you obviously feel strongly that your success is due to your extraordinary abilities and there is certainly no reason that anyone else cannot duplicate it (the implication being that those who are poor choose to be), let me propose this alternative course:

            Since you are not as wealthy as Bill Gates it must be because you choose to be less wealthy. I recommend that you correct this situation at once and become at least as wealthy as Bill Gates. In fact, since you are a (self-proclaimed) gift from God to the business world, there is no reason that you cannot achieve wealth equal to 10 or 20 Bill Gates. So let’s see: 20 times Bill Gates’ wealth would work out to around $1.4 trillion. Once you reach that point, you could obviously gift enough to the country you so love (I’m guessing here) to correct the current deficit and go a long way towards paying down the debt.

            This seems a reasonable plan that is correctly aligned with your theories about why people are or are not successful. You have your work cut out for you — please get busy.

          8. montanabill April 5, 2013

            No. You extrapolated that. I simply said that government didn’t and doesn’t provide me any advantage over anyone else. In fact, in most cases, less. Yet, government, and apparently you, believe that I should pay significantly more in taxes for those services than other citizens. By what logic or measure of fairness?

            The Bill Gates talk is a red herring.

          9. WhutHeSaid April 5, 2013

            No, Bill Gates isn’t a red herring. It’s your judgement of others extrapolated out to it’s logical conclusion. To some, you may be unfathomably wealthy. For those people you have scorn and contempt, presuming that they too can achieve anything that you’ve achieved and thus must merely be lazy slugs who wish to feed off the rest of society. This is almost never true, but it’s the argument used by every greedy deadbeat since money was first invented.

            To Bill Gates you are a insignificant pauper. If he had the same outlook as you he would say you are a lazy slug undeserving of any consideration. Despite his success, however, and to his credit, he understands that all people can’t necessarily achieve the same success or even a small portion of it. He too knows that much of success is just blind good luck. He also understands that it takes middle class consumers with purchasing power to allow the kind of success he has enjoyed. He understand why the wealthy among us should pay more than the poor among us.

            The logic that escapes you is this: You are called on to pay more because you can afford more. You can afford more because others have paid before you to build the society that enabled your success. If you don’t like this arrangement, give up all your goodies and live in a homeless shelter, then you too can qualify for assistance from this society. Either way, why don’t you just stop whining about paying your bills and instead start appreciating your supposed good fortune?

          10. montanabill April 7, 2013

            Without too much comment, I will note that I doubt Bill Gates thinks of himself as just product of ‘good luck’. He saw an opportunity and pursued it. What he understands, is the same as all people who have built fortunes understand. You can’t take it with you. You can’t even begin to spend it all on things you want, because you already have all that and still have your fortune. You know your family is covered for generations. So why not use your money to benefit others? Bill did not donate billions to the U.S. Treasury so government could decide who was worthy. He set up a charitable foundation, like others like him and before him have done.
            I pay my share to government, but it is an unfair share. What I do pay is my contribution to society, but as in Bill Gate’s case, it is not via government.

          11. WhutHeSaid April 7, 2013

            Let me first say that I have heard Bill Gates express his opinions on this subject in person. I’ve never claimed that he attributes all of his success to good luck. In fact, he credits much of his success to the opportunities made available to him by the generations of Americans who built America. The Gates foundation (and also your buddy Warren Buffett, who has donated over $1.5 billion to the Gates Foundation) supports a wide array of efforts to improve the lives of others, both internationally and right here in the US. Many of the efforts are EXACTLY the kinds of causes that enabled him to achieve success, including education.

            If you support charitable causes, I applaud you for this. I agree that we can’t take our wealth with us. This being the case, don’t ever mistake charitable contributions as the same thing as a real desire to help other people improve their lives along with the willingness to respect their personal decisions on how to achieve this whether or not they are successful. Tossing a few pennies at the homeless isn’t the same thing as a willingness to support a living wage. As I’ve said before — it’s a matter of personal character.

          12. montanabill April 8, 2013

            We all owe the previous generations for the country they have built. A key question being debated today is whether our generation is leaving a country with the same liberties and opportunities that were afforded us. Quite clearly, with liberties being usurped everyday and a growing, gigantic debt for them to pay, we are not.

            Apparently you agreed with my point that Gates (and Buffett) did not give extra money to the government for government to distribute. Their money is being used selectively not simply poured onto the general populace.

            I believe you have the wrong idea about a ‘living wage’. Governments cannot dictate a ‘living wage’. The Communists thought they could, but we can see how that turned out. A living wage is earned by workers who contribute to making their companies profitable. No profit, no living wage. The assurance of living wage is also earned by performing a skill or effort that not everyone can do or is willing to do. The more people that can do your job simply puts you into a bidding war you will not win.

          13. WhutHeSaid April 9, 2013

            Who do you think you’re fooling? You don’t care one whit about what is left to the future generations — it’s written all over you. That has to be the biggest, rottenest red herring ever deposited in this forum.

            What you care about is more shiny pennies in your pocket. I’d be surprised if you even cared very much about your own children let alone the children of other people, for whom you have obvious scorn and contempt. Man up to the fact that you are just plain greedy — it’s no secret to anyone.

          14. Guest April 6, 2013

            Wrong Social Security was never meant to be a supplement. IIt was meant to be a safety for the elderly so they wouldn’t have to be put in the poor house because they had no money to live on because wages were something like 25cent an hour it took every bit of that paycheck to feed, clothed, a place to live and medicare for families to live so help had no way to save money because they lived from paycheck to the day before the nexx payday since most didn’t make money enough to buy food

          15. montanabill April 6, 2013

            Check your history.

          16. Barbara Morgan April 6, 2013

            Nothing will satisy people like you and other Republicans until this country only has two classes, the have’s and the have nots. It has been shown that the rich do not create jobs small businessess do and they should be getting money that is suppose to be creating jobs not big oil companies, or big businesses that do not pay taxes on their billions made but still manage to get big tax refunds from the IRS each year. because of the Republican made tax loopholes they have.

            What entitlements are you talking about, the ones that Congress has given to theirselves or Social Security and Medicare that people have paid into for 40-50-60- years and the baby boomers have paid 2/3 more in SS taxes than the law said we had to since 1982 when Regan conviced us that the extra 2/3 % would be set aside just for us to make our retirement better and to keep the young workers behind us from having to pay so much to replace the money that we had paid in that paid for the Social Security drawn by the workers before us, who was having their retirement paid out of our regular SS payments.
            A course the other six years he was in office he moved the SS fund into the general fund along with our extra 2/3 % and stole the money to make his bottom line look better than it actually was. His thieft is the reason Bush Sr had the SS funds put back into its own fund and with the help of Tip O’Neil got a law passed that said SS funds could only be used to Social Security and nothing else. Of course that law didn’t stop his son from raiding the funds at twice if not more times and to use it as collerate for the money he borrowed from China to pay for his two unfinanced war. So now SS and medicare are being called entitlements because no President or members can use them as their personal banks to pay for their pork projects.,

          17. montanabill April 6, 2013

            Regretfully, Barbara, you are arguing from a position of propaganda and not one of knowledge. Small business creates most of the new jobs, but a very large percentage of all jobs belong to large companies. Most likely, if you have a job, the owner(s) of the business are wealthy. Wealthy people do not put money under their beds. They invest it, either in growing existing businesses or creating new ones. Without sufficient capital, a very high percentage of newly formed businesses will fail.

            You and I have paid into SS and Medicare. In my case, still and for over 60 years. However, when SS was created, it was targeted to a mortality of 68 years for men. Very few people lived more than a few years after retirement at 65 and many never made 65. Today, that mortality figure has moved upward significantly. If you kept track of your SS deposits, double them because of your employer contributions and add them up. You will see that you will have collected everything deposited within 5 to 7 years. Beyond that, you are living on welfare. However, the money you deposited was never meant for you. Your deposits paid for the retirees of those deposit years. That is why it is referred to as a Ponzi scheme.

            Before you blame Reagan for problems with SS, go research the history of SS to get the real story.

          18. Barbara Morgan April 7, 2013

            I don’t have a job now and when I did have a job it was not one that a rich person owned or had anything to do with. I know the history of SS and how come it was enacted, my dad was among the first people that paid into SS and never drew one cent of it, he died at the age of 61. My mother drew his social security after she reached 62 at a lower rate than he would have gotten it at 62. She was a housewife and mother her whole married life and would not have been able to live on the SS she drew if she hadn’t had 5 children that was able to give her extra money each month. Also I know about the Presidents starting with it Creator Roosevelt and Congress using SS as their personal piggy banks. But in Reagan case he did what he did on the advise of his financial adviser Alan Greenspan(Federal reserve chairman Greenspan) who told him “the money would not missed for thirty years and what would it matter then” and that is why I say Reagan stole the money because unlike other Presidents before him and after him he put the SS money and the extra SS money I and all other baby boomers were paying into the general funds and use the extra and regular SS payment to make it look like his trickle down policies were workinand never put an IOU in the SS fund box. That is why Bush Sr put Social Security funds back into their own account the last year of his Presidency and signed into law a law saying that the Social Security fund money could only be used for Social Security and nothing else. He suggested the bill to Tip O’Neill who got it passed in Congress. Not that the law stopped his son from taking money out twice that there is proof of and using the fund as collertal for the loans he got from China to pay for his two unfinaned wars. No I am not living on welfare because the extra 2/3 % percent with inerest I paid in to Social Security until I was laid off in 2004 for the second time,because of Republican economic policies, is paying for the SS money I paid into the fund,. I would be out in street or having to live with one my siblings because all my retirement savings were used to live on after unemploymentt benefits ran out in 2005 and I couldn’t find a job. I blame every President and Congress bur Reagan more than anyone else for the shape tha SS is in. If all the money taken from SS was replaced seniors now and for least century or more would not have to worry about not having money in order to live.

          19. montanabill April 7, 2013

            Pointing to Reagan is simply bias on your part. Tip O’Neal headed up a large Democrat majority that approved the changes to SS. The SS situation is akin to two kids with jam on their faces pointing to the other as the one who got into the jam jar. Presidents and Congress have been ‘raiding’ the jam jar for 30 years. Those ‘special obligations’ (IOU’s) are being currently being cashed in to supplement SS revenues and are projected to be completely gone by 2037. In the meantime, ‘cashing them in’ actually means the government is borrowing more money adding to the already unpayable debt.

            I’ve had family members who had to rely on Social Security as their only source of income. Like most of our parents, mine were products of the great depression, so my father, even though very poor, took great pains to insure that he (my mother died at age 41) would have funds other than SS for his retirement years. My wife’s father, in much the same circumstances but with better earning capability, did not plan for the future and left my mother-in-law totally dependent on his SS when he died at 67.

            Maybe people confuse ‘trickle-down’ with ‘manna from heaven’. Trickle down is accumulated by those who chose to work for living. Without it, there is no paycheck, even for working hard.

          20. Burzghash April 4, 2013

            The deficits are not ballooning. In fact, they are shrinking. They are currently in the black.

            Why don’t you know this? You’d think it’d be basic reading material if you intend to make statements about the deficit. Oh wait, it’s because you’re not interested in legitimate debate.

            Carry on.

          21. montanabill April 4, 2013

            Why don’t I know this? Because I can’t find a single fact to back up your claim. Try usdebtclock dot org

          22. rustacus21 April 5, 2013

            … sigh… & it would be so nice had the SCT NOT intervened & there’d been no conservatives in the WH during the 2001-2009 period, so lets not pretend that the crap left behind had no bearing, impact or cataclysmic aftermath 4 Prez. Obama. What was left behind following Prez. Clinton only needed to be built upon & could have been accomplished by a 15 year old High Schooler. Last in his class no less. 1st in her class would have been a plus… We need jobs now; programs to address the future energy mkt & needs of future generations. Like Prez. Clinton 4saw. Greed in the mkt created the tech bubble, if U remember. Being persecuted by the Starr inquisition did what it was designed to – distract & disable Clinton. Jobs THEN worked the Clinton miracle. Too busy trying to be liked, Prez. Obama has now cut off both feet, by ignoring the jobs imperative then & beginning his 2nd administration doing the very SAME THING! By ignoring conservatives, crafting a budget w/Congressional Dems & Independents & giving Republicans the ultimatum – take it or leave it DAMNIT!!! – we’ll make CERTAIN progress – even if & most especially – doing w/out conservatives. Conservatives HATE this man. No reason. Just hate. 4get them. History won’t wait on the Prez, whimpy Dems, ignorant voters or any 1 else. So I guess that leaves it up to we Liberal/Progressives…

          23. montanabill April 6, 2013

            How are you Liberal/Progressives doing in the countries controlled by Liberal/Progressives, or in cities or states governed by Liberal/Progressives? Proof is in the pudding. I don’t see any Liberal/Progressive pudding.

          24. WhutHeSaid April 6, 2013

            Yes you do. Your state (Montana) helps itself to an oversize portion of that liberal state ‘pudding’ every year by slurping up more federal tax dollars than they pay in. You are already well aware of this fact, so stop telling tall tales.

          25. montanabill April 7, 2013

            Not responsive. Names of prospering Liberal/Progressive run places, please.

          26. WhutHeSaid April 7, 2013

            It was perfectly responsive. You can exercise your ‘Google fingers’ if you want a list of progressive-run states that pay out more than they take in — in many cases FAR more than they take in. Likewise you can find the conservative TALKING states (like Montana) that pay lip service to fiscal responsibility and self sufficiency but snort up that liberal ‘pudding’ (aka tax dollars) like it was going out of style.

          27. montanabill April 8, 2013

            Not responsive. We are not discussing who gets what, the question is to name places totally run by liberal/progressives that are successful.

          28. WhutHeSaid April 8, 2013

            Again, it was perfectly responsive. I believe that you are trying to set up a straw-man argument — now you add the caveat ‘totally run by liberals/progressives’ as if that is ever likely in a democracy. Argue with your own straw man. The proof is in the pudding that YOUR state gorges itself with (tax dollars). Since money is your litmus test for both success and righteousness, the fact that your state draws from the tax revenue of such states as New York both answers your question and disproves your assertion.

          29. montanabill April 8, 2013

            I’ll take that as ‘you can’t or won’t answer’ the real question.

          30. WhutHeSaid April 9, 2013

            I answered your question, now you answer mine:

            Why do all of the red states except Texas suck up so much federal revenue from the blue states if they are such models of success?

          31. ObozoMustGo April 8, 2013

            Morning Montana! Long time, no chat. Just saw this and figured that I would remind you that a leftist definition of success and a conservative definition of success are two very different things. This is why the left believes Detroit is a success. The ultimate goal is the conversion of a populace from prosperous into equally dependent citizens. Everone is equal and everyone depends on the government for the necessities of life. To the left, that’s success!

            And WhutHeSaid is a racist maggot. It’s all about skin color to him. He’s never answered my question about who I would vote for, a white liberal or a black conservative because for him to do so would prove his fantasy about people only dislike Obozo because he’s black.

            Have a great, Montana!

            “A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.” — George Bernard Shaw

          32. WhutHeSaid April 9, 2013

            I guess your idea of success is sucking the tax dollars from the blue states.

            Listen, no matter how many sheets you have hanging in your closet, no matter how many crosses you burn, your kind is headed for extinction. Bigots are a blight upon the world, and they are gasping their last breath. I’ll just sit here and enjoy your plaintive squeals of protest as you fade away into irrelevancy and eventually history.

          33. rustacus21 April 9, 2013

            Money & intimidation are suppressing the free expression of citizens ‘NATURAL’ inclination toward civil society – i.e., our Liberal/Progressive, Constitution civil society, that is. Otherwise, explain why the most popular Liberal/Progressive (Ed Schultz – MSNBC) on TV/radio was shut down? It wasn’t for lack of ‘PUDDING’ I’m sure…

          34. montanabill April 10, 2013

            MSNBC does what it wants to do. If liberal ‘PUDDING’ had supported the show, it would still be on.

          35. WhutHeSaid April 6, 2013

            They don’t hate Obama for no reason — they hate him because he’s black. It’s the biggest secret that nobody admits yet everybody knows.

          36. montanabill April 7, 2013

            So what you are saying is that if Obama wasn’t black, we would love his policies?

          37. WhutHeSaid April 7, 2013

            Maybe not exactly love, but the exaggerated opposition and pure hate is racist or at least bigoted in nature. Don’t bother to deny what everyone already knows.

      2. Dominick Vila April 4, 2013

        “The only reason we invest substantial capital elsewhere is because that is where it will do the most good! ”

        Believe it or not, I often agree with many of the points you make, but this one does not make any sense to me. Our commitment, as citizens, is to do everything we can to keep our country safe and to contribute to the well being of our society. The place where our investments would do the most good is right here, in the country where we live, where we raise our children, and where we plan to die.

        Our multi-nationals don’t invest oveerseas because of barriers put in place by our government and our insistence to protect our environment, they do it because labor cost considerations, favorable tax laws, lack of limited safety and environmental laws, ineffective tariffs in the USA, and to expand their market share in developing countries.

        I suppose we could overcome those “barriers” by accepting $1 an hour jobs, allowing private industry to destroy our environment, eliminate job safety regulations, and giving them a few more subsidies or loopholes, but is that who we want to become as individuals and as a society? Shouldn’t we look at what Germany, Scandinavian countries, Japan and other industrialized nations that, in spite of a high standard of living manage to be competitive instead of comparing ourselves with Third World countries and countries where citizens are nothing more than pawns in a high stake game?

        1. montanabill April 4, 2013

          As I said, capital is not altruistic. It goes where it can be used most effectively to make profit. Not unlike the creation of a company. A company is not created to create jobs. It is created to make profit. As long as it makes profit it will exist, with the likely side effect that jobs will be created. Many of the items you mentioned regarding barriers do, in fact, result in money flowing out of country. When our government taxes businesses higher than competing countries, when it creates way too many needless regulations or defines for them what labor should cost, those burdens create a reason for capital to look elsewhere. We all want capital stay here, to return here and to create business here. But trying to ignore the laws of nature and wishing, will not make it happen.

          1. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

            Capital isn’t altruistic, but people and governments by the people are. This has never stopped the US from becoming an attractive place to do business. We cannot put the proverbial genie back into the bottle and lower the living standard of Americans so that they compete with every third-world country, nor has it ever been necessary.

            Here’s an example: Infrastructure investment can both help grow the economy and increase American attractiveness to business. Wars like Iraq do not have the same ROI — yet you have pointed out in the past that you always support defense spending, never making the distinction between opportunistic war and actual defense. As a single country, we don’t need to spend as much on defense as the entire rest of the world — yet you support this. Sounds like you only like austerity for people of things you don’t like, while supporting spending like a drunken sailor for those you favor. I’m guessing that at least part of your income is defense related. Am I close?

          2. montanabill April 4, 2013

            I will grant you that people, at times, can be altruistic. Government by the people? Not much proof to back up that statement. The U.S. was and is still, to some degree, an attractive place to do business, simply because there is still some modicum of freedom, rapidly being consumed, however, by ever larger government. Americans who choose not become educated in skills necessary for the market will not have a choice on their standard of living. They are choosing to make themselves as marketable as people in third world countries. Government can decree that they be paid a certain wage, but only at the expense of business and capital choosing to move elsewhere. Why would business do this to good people? Because of two products being nearly equal, people will chose the lower priced. The proof has been on our store shelves for decades now. If you want to stay in business, you must be competitive. If that means moving work out of country, that is where it goes.

            I believe that being the top military power in the world has dividends. History, from earliest times, verifies this postulation. True, we have allowed politicians to get us into quagmires and then tie our military’s hands so that an absolute solution becomes impossible. Had Washington, Lincoln and Truman fought with same goals of a stalemate, there would be no USA.

            Early in my working years, I spent a few years in the aerospace business. Couldn’t stand the game, so I left for private enterprise far removed from government contracting. Occasionally, some government agency buys my product, but it is under the same terms as Joe off the street. No RFP responses, no GSA lists, no special pricing. So, you are not remotely close.

          3. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

            In fact, I have plenty of proof to back up the ‘government by the people’ statement. One needs to look no further than the 2012 rejection of more for the uber-wealthy and pain for everyone else.

            You have offered no proof that being the ‘top military power’ returns dividends. Further, there is a difference between being the ‘top’ power and spending 7 times more than the next ‘top’ power — especially when that other power is many times larger than you. It seems to me that too much military spending invites war-mongering and adventurism, and I’ve never seen your so-called ‘dividends’. I’ll gladly reconsider my view if you can convince me that Viet Nam or Iraq produced some wonderful benefits and not just expense, angst, injury and death.

            There is something about competition that you do not seem able to understand. Not everyone needs to compete with everyone else. US workers will never be able to compete with hourly workers in, say, Mexico or the Philippines — nor is that necessary. I do not have to worry about competing with welders or plumbers because I chose a different field, educated myself in that field, and made use of the considerable tools and opportunities uniquely available to me as an American. In fact, I’m happy if plumbers and welders make a living wage because that helps grow the economy thereby making my chosen profession even more lucrative.

            Also, you are wrong about customers always selecting the cheapest alternatives. Apple does quite well in places like China despite the fact that their products are far and away more expensive than most of their competitors. I personally purchase goods that I know are not the most inexpensive because I prefer a higher quality. Only when people are forced to choose between food for their family and consumer products does your theory hold true, which is EXACTLY why maintaining a living wage is important for the American economy. America has NEVER been the cheapest place for labor or business, but it’s the other qualities that made America excel — not the least of which has been the frequent government-funded research and development and infrastructure investment throughout our history.

            Military R&D is the only dividend that I know of that ever came from the massive defense spending we do in this country, and I must say that I don’t believe it’s worth the cost in lives or treasure. The US space program achieved the same kind of dividends as did the Intercontinental Railroad, the Interstate Highway System, and many other public projects. Defense is one thing; an obsession with bullying the world is quite another.

          4. montanabill April 5, 2013

            I thought that 10,000 years of recorded history would cover the ‘top military power’ question.

            I certainly don’t think Vietnam was necessary. My jury is still out on Iraq, although I think we made some pretty bad decisions toward the end. I think we didn’t finish the job in Korea and Afghanistan, and those places will continue to be troublesome for everyone. We tried being a low key military power after WW I. How did that work out?

            I think you are wrong about competition. It is nature’s natural selection process and we are not immune. Would U.S. workers rather compete with Mexico, etc., or be unemployed?

          5. WhutHeSaid April 5, 2013

            Ten thousand years of recorded history didn’t prevent you from missing the most salient point: Every ‘top power’ ultimately fell and was replaced by another power. Those who learned to survive by means other than violent force and war survived. Those who didn’t disappeared. Never was a Biblical passage more true than Matthew 26:52, which paraphrased says that those who live by the sword are destined to die by the sword.

            I agree that we should maintain an ability to defend ourselves, but the wars in Viet Nam and Iraq were not defense — they were misguided adventurism. 58,000 Americans never lived to see the questionable ‘dividends’ from Viet Nam, and the same is true for 4,400 Americans in Iraq. Many multiples of that were maimed for the rest of their lives. This doesn’t even include the 300,000+ civilians who died in Viet Nam or the 100,000+ civilians who died in Iraq.

            If I were king of the world, the one rule I would have about war is that anyone who advocates for it would be required to go fight it. Most politicians who are the biggest war-mongers evaded service for themselves when they were eligible to be conscripted — including Mitt Romney. Now that service is voluntary it is only slightly less equitable since it’s still primarily the poorest people who feel compelled to risk their lives due to a lack of less risky alternatives for earning a living.

            No, we are not immune to competition, but we don’t need to compete with everyone in every market. Since you claim to be God’s gift to business, you should know full well that you cannot create a company that produces every product and every service to compete in every market. You must choose products or services that you are good at and perhaps have some competitive edge due to location, special skills and resources, or just plain luck (being in the right place at the right time). Being an American provides many benefits that help you to be competitive in many areas, but not all.

          6. montanabill April 5, 2013

            You are right. Every top power ultimately fell. Why? Because they didn’t remain the top power. If we had kept and modernized our military after WW I, what are the chances Japan would have attacked us? Would Hitler have been more cautious? Could WW II have been averted?
            If the Chinese had feared that MacArthur would really come after them with any weapon at his disposal, would the Far East be a far different place with a united Korea and no Kim Jung whosit?
            Food for thought.

            We were lead to believe that we had been attacked by North Vietnam. It turned out to be a lie, but we all believed it at the time. It truly was a worthless action. Again, I am still undecided about Iraq. Saddam was clearly capable of just about anything. 100,000+ died during the war, the majority at the hands of their own countrymen. During Saddam’s time in power, nearly 1 million died at his direction, so we can ask, how many would have died during the same time period as the war, if we had not attacked? And if we had not intervened, would 100,000+ still be dead with Saddam still in power and still no hope of any kind of self-governing for the Iraqis?

          7. WhutHeSaid April 5, 2013

            Your response perfectly illustrates the flawed thinking that is behind much of the senseless carnage that humans have inflicted upon each other throughout history. A couple of points:

            Japan attacked the US precisely because they saw us as a threat to their ambitions, therefore, your point can be argued either way. After all, Japan did not attack Canadian territory even though Canada declared war against Germany in 1939. They attacked the US because of our perceived power and projection into their region of the world.

            Secondly, you apparently fail to recognize the hypocrisy of the US when justifying the invasion of other countries on humanitarian grounds. While you chose to cite 1 million deaths you say are attributed to Saddam Hussein, you fail to note the irony of a country that actively participated in the extermination of 10 million Native Americans simply because they wanted to take their possessions, or the fact that the US to this day still maintains concentration camps (aka reservations) for the descendents of those crimes. Crimes? Yes, CRIMES. No other country could do the same thing today without the US proclaiming it a crime against humanity that justified an invasion by US forces. Nor were these always declared enemies; sometimes they were allies of the US in the Revolutionary and other wars that were turned upon when the US became powerful enough that they felt they could do so with impunity.

            Remember also that the US was responsible for arming Saddam — how quickly we forget our adventures with Iran and our support of Saddam as an enemy of Iran. This goes double for arming the Taliban against the Soviets, and we see how that worked out — don’t we?

            There are countries in this world — like Switzerland — that make it a habit to stay out of wars unless there is absolute need, and they prosper nonetheless. I’m not saying that we have to be exactly like Switzerland, but there are tangible benefits to limiting the projection of violent force.

            Whether one believes that US military superiority is essential or not, one thing is certain: The US spends almost as much on defense and defense-related activities as the rest of the world combined. There is no reasonable justification for this other than wishing to be the bully of the world. History tells us what inevitably happens to the world’s bullies.

          8. WhutHeSaid April 5, 2013

            I replied to your post some time ago, but it appears that The National Memo removed it because it unceremoniously disappeared. If this happens with this post I will consider it cowardly censorship by The National Memo and will not post here again. Here is what I posted:

            Your response illuminates the flawed thinking behind the senseless mayhem that humans often inflict upon each other. A couple of points:

            Japan attacked the US because they perceived a threat towards their ambitions, so your point could be argued either way. After all, they didn’t attack Canada’s territory even though Canada declared war against Germany in 1939. They attacked the US precisely because of our perceived power and projection into their geographical area.

            When citing humanitarian concerns as a justification for military intervention, you fail to recognize the hypocrisy of a country that actively participated in the extermination of 10 million Native Americans simply because they wanted their possessions, or the fact that the US to this very day maintains operational remnants of the concentration camps built for the victims of these crimes. Crimes? Yes, CRIMES. No country in the world could do today what the US did to Native Americans without being called out for crimes against humanity justifying invasion by US forces. Nor were these acts committed only against declared enemies, rather, often times it was against allies who fought alongside the fledgling US in the Revolutionary and other wars, but were turned upon once the US grew powerful enough to do so with impunity. Don’t try the excuse that they weren’t considered crimes at the time — they were very often in direct violation of the United States’ own laws — to say nothing of the Native’s laws.

            How quickly we forget how we helped arm Saddam Hussein during our adventures with Iran. Likewise, we armed the Taliban against the Soviets — and look how well that’s worked out.

            There are countries in the world — like Switzerland — that make it a habit to avoid war unless absolutely necessary yet prosper nonetheless. I’m not saying that we need to be exactly like Switzerland, but there are tangible benefits to limiting one’s projection of violent force.

            I agree with the idea of maintaining our ability to defend ourselves, but Vietnam and Iraq were not defense — they were misguided military adventurism. We do not have the authority to act as the police of the world, using violence and death to force others to do things the way we see fit. People don’t like being bullied or killed, and you can guarantee that they will always do their level best to kill us right back — as we saw in Vietnam. North Vietnam was vastly over-matched by the US, yet we still lost the war.

            The US spends almost as much as the entire rest of the world on defense and defense-related activities, which can only be justified by a wish to be a bully to the entire world. History tells us what ultimately happens to all of the world’s bullies.

          9. montanabill April 7, 2013

            I think there is some pretty good evidence that Japan would not have attacked if our military hadn’t been so reduced.

            What happened to native Americans was, in many respects, criminal. But you really should equate apples to apples. At that time in history, virtually every major power was subjugating large groups of peoples worldwide. Colonialism was not viewed as that big of a sin. The violence in Africa, today, gets lip service, but very little done about it. And China has some very large populations captive, again facing nothing but lip service.

            We lost to North Vietnam for political reasons, not military reasons. Much the same as we didn’t finish the job in Korea or Afghanistan.

            I don’t agree with your bully assessment. But I do agree we have no business being policeman to the world, or for that matter, subsidizer of nations. There is a bit of a paradox though. Unless other nations see a clear demonstration of our power once in awhile, nut jobs like Kim Jung uh-oh might start to believe their own propaganda about how strong they are. Bin Laden and radical muslims are a different story because they not centrally based, have no moral problems killing anyone or with suicide. It is where a strong CIA will have the most impact. But after Benghazi, I suspect a lot of them have less trust in their own government.

          10. WhutHeSaid April 7, 2013

            Let me start with your last point first:

            Osama Bin Laden and his fighters were, in fact, funded by and to some extent trained by the CIA, so a strong CIA (as it turned out) did have quite an impact. It wasn’t the intended impact, but this just illustrates that a weapon is also a danger to the hand that wields it. This has always been true, and similar scenarios have repeatedly played themselves out through recorded history.

            The reason for losing the war in Vietnam doesn’t matter. What matters is that we lost the war. 58,000 Americans and hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians never lived to voice their opinions on what was or was not achieved by this misadventure.

            What happened, and continues to happen in some respects, to the Native Americans was indeed criminal. Colonialism was somewhat controversial even then, but wholesale murder was also a part of this debacle. Only Nazi Germany performed mass exterminations on a scale that matched the colonization of the Americas. Once again, I point out that the Americans often violated their own laws in the process, including the use of biological warfare against civilians.

            We do not need to spend 42%+ of the total world military expense to defend ourselves or even provide a deterrent against the military adventures of others. There will always be crackpots like Kim Jong Un in the world, and unless we want start a war in every continent on Earth every decade or so, we need to deal with it as the situation warrants. North Korean saber-rattling is a time-honored tradition that often gets them what they want. If you like war so much, I believe that you should sell your business and go enlist. You have no business volunteering the country’s youth to die in order to fulfill some yearning to be perceived as the world’s tough guy, or worse yet, to obtain another country’s resources by violent force.

  5. As an outsider looking in I can tell you you’re a nation infected by fear to the point of being psychotic. Your guns can only go so far but the fear never leaves. Your neighbour becomes suddenly your enemy on a battlefield. It’s like you are conditioned for war not peace. You can buy AK47’s, UZIs and any weapon of desire just as easy as a new laptop. I see nothing wrong with protecting yourself however guns are terminal instruments. You cannot bring people back from the dead unless you’re Jesus.

    1. John Pigg April 3, 2013

      You seem to have many misconceptions about the US. If you watch and read to much news it can make you think that the US is a nation plagued by fear. But do not confuse media reporting with culture and fact. In general the US is a very safe place and violent crime is steadily decreasing, this trend is not true in all countries.

      I can understand your fear of firearms, but just because it is purchasable doesn’t mean that most Americans are buying AK-47’s. Gun ownership is steadily decreasing, and those who own assault weapons are few and far between. Don’t jump to stigmatize the whole country due to media over saturation of gun issues.

    2. RichardTater April 4, 2013

      Obama can bring them back from the dead, look how many of them voted for him.

      1. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

        If he can also bring back the brain dead, then perhaps there is still hope for you.

        1. RichardTater April 4, 2013

          If I was brain dead, I’d be an Obamao bootlicker.

          1. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

            ‘Tater’, eh? I’ll bet you have at least one Rush Limbaugh blow up doll in your trailer, so I can understand your frustration.

          2. RichardTater April 4, 2013

            Sure, Nimrod, I’ll work on the blow up doll as soon as I get done with your mother. You ever wonder why she looks like a glazed donut when she kisses you good night?

          3. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

            Calm down, Tater. If you’d rather get popped in the pooper by Rush than vote for Obama — that’s your right. Nobody cares what you do in the privacy of your own trailer. Besides your sister, that is.

          4. RichardTater April 4, 2013

            Keep licking Obamao’s azz, maybe he’ll invite you back for a three way with the SQOTUS, the first lady Sasquatch. BTW, your mother loves my trailer.

          5. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

            It seems to me that Obama’s been so busy kicking redneck bigot ass that he isn’t still long enough for any ass-lickings. Now I know that being a loser isn’t much fun for you, and it’s even tougher when your Rush doll continuously springs a new leak, but that’s no reason to be nasty. True, Obama is more successful than you, more popular than you, more intelligent than you, and can kick your ass all day long — but is this his fault? You should have tried harder, and perhaps you would be more successful and have more than 3 teeth.

          6. RichardTater April 4, 2013

            Does SEIU pay you in cash or are you still happy with the EBT cards?

          7. WhutHeSaid April 5, 2013

            My goodness, but you ARE quite frustrated, yes? Can I help it if nobody considers your beer-farting talents as qualifications for a job? No!

            In order to help spare your Rush doll from too much wear and tear tonight, allow me to impart these words of comfort to ease your suffering:

            Obama is your leader.
            He’ll be your leader for 4 more years.

            He’ll be black the WHOLE TIME!!


            Have a pleasant evening, Tater.

          8. RichardTater April 5, 2013

            My, you sure are slobbering a lot tonight. Obama is just another illegal immigrant, another third world bast*rd, he’ll be gone soon enough. Here’s hoping he goes like your buddy Chavez, rotting with cancer.

          9. RichardTater April 4, 2013

            Obama, is that you? You should be getting some sleep, you have an important security briefing in the morning! Oh, that’s right. You don’t attend them.

  6. LaRae Bailey April 3, 2013

    in this case I am sure glad the republicans hold the house… I believe the democrats with this gun control and UN treaty will vote themselves right out of office where they now belong. you do NOT vote for americans to give up constitutional rights and expect your paycheck to continue

    1. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

      Really? Republicans do it all the time. Attacks on women’s reproductive rights, minority voting rights, etc. I’m sorry — did I wake you up?

  7. adriancrutch April 3, 2013

    When people tire of buying U.S. Treasury debt. Then it’s over! THANKS NIXON!

  8. John Pigg April 3, 2013

    I find the Democrats and this administration disingenuous when they say they seem to be concerned about job creation. The reason I say this is because the Democrats seem more concerned about those on minimum wage than they do reversing the trend of sending manufacturing oversea’s. The Republicans have done a far better job of justifying job exportation due to supposed “over-regulation”.

    I agree with the administrations position on Deficit Reduction. Primarily because it is fiscally conservative, you can’t balance the books without increasing revenue.

    As for gun laws, most Americans can agree that there should be stricter background checks. But hoping that rural Republicans and Democrats will jump on board with banning assault weapons seems unrealistic. Its rather hard to discuss the article further without knowing who they surveyed.

    1. Albert Buchheit April 3, 2013

      Why should I be subject and have to pay for a background check when buying a gun or ammunition? I do not need a background check when I get on an airplane. How do we keep bad people off our airlines? We have a no fly list. Do the same with firearms and ammunition. Have a no buy list.If you are a convicted felon or have mental problems or other conditions that prohibit your ability to own a firearm you are put on a no buy list. This is the computer age and a list like this can be done efficiently and with less work than background checks performed on each transaction

      1. John Pigg April 3, 2013

        I would argue why shouldn’t you. I had my first handgun bought for me at 21. It wouldn’t not have bothered me to pay a small fee for a background check and wait for a short period.

        I also support your no buy list idea, but I do not think that a small fee and brief waiting period are that great of an inconvenience. Side note this would also serve your purposes to separate those who purchase their firearms legally and those that purchase them for crime. In my opinion it would strengthen gun owners arguments and position.

      2. WhutHeSaid April 4, 2013

        Um, pardon me for pointing this out, but the background check IS a ‘no buy list’. What else did you think it was?

  9. docb April 7, 2013

    Granted but repubs do not read or listen or care about what the people want or need! They can’t handle the truth!


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