Saturday, February 14, 2009

A Cautionary Note to Conservatives...







I've got to warn my fellow Conservatives that underestimating the Obama administration will doom, not only the GOP, but far more importantly, CONSERVATISM to the wilderness, perhaps for a pretty long time.
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Hear me out on this, please.

Right now, I think it's safe to say that Rahm Emanuel may be the most effective political force since Newt Gingrich, while Barack Obama, is perhaps the best communicator since Bill Clinton, perhaps even as effective as Ronald Reagan was.

The idea that "Obama wants to drive the economy into Depression" is as foolish a thought as are the 9-11 Truther conspiracies that "the Bush administration was behind the 9/11 attacks." Both are as crazy as the idea that "Obama wants to see the U.S. attacked again."

Not only are such ideas foolish, they do irreparable harm to the side the purveyors of such ideas claim to support. They isolate such people in the "lunatic fringe" margins and once uttered, such sentiments can often serve to make those who claim them, unable to be taken seriously.

Ask yourself this, "Was G W Bush a Conservative?"

The ONLY honest answer is, "Not on your life," so PERISH that thought.

G W Bush was, like his Dad (the man who railed AGAINST Reagan's "Voodoo economics"), every bit as Keynesian as Obama, Pelosi and Reid are now.

Scarier still, G W Bush wasn't nearly as effective a communicator and defender of those Keynesian ideals as is Obama.

Right now, a LOT of Americans are lauding Obama's forcing those companies that have taken bailout monies to rein in their corporate compensation (bank CEO's compensation for bailout recipients is now capped at $500K). There's little doubt that with the auto bailouts will come some real fuel changes (forced by government) and perhaps auto downsizing, along with them.

THAT (forcing a deal with businesses that take government monies) is NOT "socialism."

IF it IS, IF that's your definition of "socialism," then the corporations that sought out all that government money are the real culprits - THEY sold out Capitalism, NOT the current administration!

All prevailing evidence indicates that MORE Keynesian policies (more government spending, more bailouts, and more wrong-headed regulation) will not get us out of a crisis brought on by the Keynesian policies of Bush-Jr. - SIX LOOOOONG years of excessive government spending (the prescription drug boondoggle, the NCLB Act, more social spending even adjusted for inflation than LBJ) and ham-handed regulation (ie. Sarb-Ox, which has been so expensive that it was almost solely responsible for the "jobless recovery" of 2002 - 2003, as companies couldn't afford to add payroll due to the added Sarb-Ox compliance costs).

MORE of the same bad policies are never the cure for bad policies.

Saying that, I'm telling you, this crew is NOT a bunch of dopes set on ruining America or having us attacked again.

They've changed the WoT (even scrapping that terms for "the global conflict") ONLY around tha margins, but have ratcheted UP the rendition program, signed onto and kept up the NSA Surveillance programs and are re-focusing on Afghanistan and other hotspots. Very clever.

Economically, their economics team is FAR better than G W Bush's. There's absolutely no comparison. Larry Summers, Tim Geithner...not a "socialist" in the bunch...ALL of them are market-oriented economists and they're all sound policy wonks.

Even their current spending, the overwhelming bulk is targeted to infrastructure repair - creating lots of new private sector construction jobs down the road.

AGAIN, these guys have taken a very cautious, clever approach to this. AND they've fought off Nancy Pelosi's overreach on an number of issues.

Angry Liberalism CAN occasionally be en vogue because the MSM backs it up, but I can assure you "angry Conservatism" s never in fashion and there's NOTHING the liberal media likes more than to see grassroots Conservatives meltdown and engage in the very kind of ODS they themselves not long ago supported as BDS.

Trust me, they'll marginalize angry Conservatives in a heartbeat and the bulk of moderate apolitical America will go along with them, clucking, "Yeah those crazy Conservatives. You can't trust them at all."

Ironically enough, I see Conservative overreaction as MORE of a threat to Conservatism than the Keynesian policies now being CONTINUED....all Obama's done s far is to CONTINUE the G W Bush policies! Moreover, NOTHING done to date, can't be undone in dealing with the crisis these things intensify.

I suppose I'm more nuanced in my political views. I don't see it as "Republicans = GOOD, Democrats = BAD." Not at all.

The way I see it, the Blue Dog (Conservative) Democrats and the Conservative Republicans are BOTH GOOD, the left-leaning, Liberal Democrats (Chuck Schumer, Bill Nelson) are BAD, the far-Left Democratic loons (Barney Frank, Henry Waxman, Chris Dodd, John Conyers, etc) are WORSE...and the "Rockefeller Republicans" (those Liberal Republican elites like Arlen Specter, Sue Collins, Chris Shays) are the (to steal a phrase from the batshit crazy Keith Olbermann) "WORST PEOPLE in the WORLD."

Conservatives can't just swing for the fences against the Obama administration. We simply don't have the credibility to do that. Not after having spent the DECADE after Gingrich soiling the Conservative coalition he'd built.

A LOT of so-called Conservatives (G W, McCain, DeLay, Hastert) have screwed things up royally and delivered a bloated government and a sick economy.

We have to fix our own house before we can throw any rocks at Obama's, and while I don't think you're wrong about the disastrous outcome...even the CBO says the stimulus plan will have long term negative consequences; http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/feb/04/cbo-obama-stimulus-harmful-over-long-haul/

My caution goes to the tone and tenor of how Conservatives choose to make their arguments.

If your opponent has a hole in his boat, it's best just to let him sink, rather than excoriate him for deliberating sabotaging his own attempt in the race.

We DO indeed seem to be heading from hard times into much worse times, how much worse, remains to be seen, BUT we have to acknowledge that the Bush administration (uncomfortable as this is to admit) had a HUGE hand in moving the U.S. onto the disastrous Keynesian path it's now on.

G W bush bought into the same "Big Government Conservatism" that Rudy Guiliani thrived on for a few years. The problem is that it still balloons government and Bush went even further with his "compassionate Conservatism" and that line of thought led many Republicans to support some of the policies that led to the current subprime mortgage mess that triggered the global credit crisis.

Newt Gingrich had a GREAT article in yesterday's Washington Post about what Conservatives (in government) need to do to win back the day; http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/feb/11/where-does-the-conservative-movement-go-from-here/
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Confrontation IS often necessary, but condemnation rarely is.
There IS certainly hope that another economic failure primarily brought about and then intensified by Liberalism will return us to a new direction

AFTER Carter, came Reagan....after David Dinkins (and the skyrocketing murder rate in NYC...over 2,000/year) came Guiliani....and after Bill Clinton veered Left in his first two years, came Newt Gingrich.

The problem with modern Conservatism is that when it's been empowered it's treaded way too lightly - nibbling around the edges, instead of dismantling the programs that weigh the economy down like anchors.

I am, in fact, hopeful of some sweeping changed in 2010, but they won't mean ANYTHING unless they are truly Conservative changes. I hope we can find another Gingrich and not someone who'll settle for nibbling around the edges, and certainly NOT a DeLay or a Hastert who'd seek to "get along with the Keynesians."
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THANKS to Z for encouraging this post.

28 comments:

The Hunter said...

What are conservatives conserving?

Originally, 2+ centuries ago, liberals wanted more freedom for the people, versus conservatives, who sought to conserve the power of monarchies.

Today, liberals rush down the road to big government. President Ford said something to the effect that "A government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have."

Conservatives are moving in the same direction, just not as quickly.

I support the Constitution as it was written, and as it has been amended, incorporating the Bill of Rights against actions by governments of the states and the political subdivisions thereof, in addition to guaranteeing those rights against the federal government.

I believe that in our effort to have a government of the people, by the people, and for the people, we have elected politicians that are people, and thus human, and that with their human frailties, they have succumbed to the temptations of corruption. Consequently, I believe the government must be vigorously monitored and watched, and that it is the duty of a citizen in a democratic republic to do so.

These beliefs make me not a conservative, but a radical -- an extremist.

I do not seek to conserve the government we have; I seek revolution. The founders of this country, having fought a long, bloody civil war against their brothers from the British Isles, had the foresight and wisdom to write a Constitution that, if abided by, would guarantee that future revolutions could be peaceful and legal, and it is this kind of revolution I seek -- a return to lawful, Constitutional government.

I have not abandoned the Republican Party -- vast elements of the GOP have abandoned America. They have sold us out to enemies, both foreign and domestic. Banana Republicans, they are in bed with big business and foreign organized crime who, in turn, have close ties to the very terrorists who seek our destruction. The party of Honest Abe has been compromised, and America is in great danger.

The only change Obama has brought is which bunch of pigs is feeding at our trough, as Clinton's neo-libs gave way to W's neo-cons, Banana Republicans who have now yielded to the Obamanistas.

JMK said...

The GOP is an imperfect, perhaps even poor vehicle for Conservatism, Hunter.

The Democratic Party was the original home of social Conservatives, but they ceded that Party to the Left-wing kooks awhile back. That doesn't mean that Party can't be wrested back, but that'll be an uphill struggle.

One major problem with the GOP is that it’s run by a moneyed elite (its Rockefeller-wing) that is decidedly Keynesian (Big Government) and has been for a VERY long time.

Herbert Hoover was the FIRST U.S. President to institute “Progressive” policies in the U.S. government. “Progressivism” is the view that “there is a scientific solution, best delivered via government for EVERY problem facing mankind.

Richard (“We are all Keynesians now”) Nixon and George Bush Sr. (who derided Reagan’s Supply Side policies as “Voodoo Economics”) were both ardent Keynesians, so it’s not surprising that aside from two Keynesian tax cuts, G W Bush instituted policies as Keynesian as his Dad’s and was far more comfortable cooperating with Pelosi-Reid than with the DeLay and Hastert Congresses – well over $2 TRILLION of the $5 TRILLION worth of debt that the Bush administration added, has been added over the past two years!

Conservatism is embodied in Reagan’s “Government is NOT the solution, government IS the problem.”

The REAL problem for Conservatives, is that aside from Reagan and Newt Gingrich, NO Conservatives have held sway over GOP policies over the past quarter century!

The Gingrich Congress was the FIRST Congress to cut the federal budget in over 100 years. That, along with slashing the Capital gains tax RATE to 15% created the booming late 1990s, with some of the lowest Misery Indexes in four decades AND all those budget SURPLUSES of the late ‘90s.

One problem is that too many Conservatives have been too quick to fall for “sounds good” over “does good.”

G W Bush won against two very weak Democrats (Gore and Kerry) in large measure because so many Conservatives were conned into voting for “the only candidate who’ll keep the Supreme Court from moving far-Left.”

Pat Buchanan was right that the GOP leadership, its moneyed interests have about as much regard for that Party’s Conservative base as they do boils on their buttocks.

Seane-Anna said...

Time to create a new party, then?

The Hunter said...

Well, Seane-Anna, that's how the Republican Party got started.

Still, though, the next logical step is to look at what a mess the country is in, and look for or create a new one.

And then we start looking for a new planet.

Senator McCain and Vice President Biden are on the payroll of the same Albanian organized crime faction. Many of the Bush Administration's neocons are connected to organized crime that traffics nuclear secrets, narcotics, arms, and other contraband. Obama is tied in with the Chicago mob which, in turn, is on the distribution end of the heroin that Osama bin Laden helps produce, and which Biden/McCain/Clinton's friends in the Balkans traffic throughout Europe and on to the new world.

No, I'll be damned if this planet, this country, or the GOP is going down without a fight. I say it's time for the co-opted crooks to find a new party. I think we need to put them some place where they'll have plenty of time to think about it, too -- like in a federal prison.

JMK said...

"Time to create a new party, then? (Seane-Anna)
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It may be, although I've always held out hope for a reclaimed Democratic Party....maybe neither Party of today can or should be saved.

Right now, my biggest fear isn't the stimulus fiasco - yes it's going through and yes, it'll probably be even worse than the CBO predicts (http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/feb/04/cbo-obama-stimulus-harmful-over-long-haul/) - it's that the GOP will find a way to screw up the gift that may very well be given to them in 2010 and beyond.

After running on the economy, the Obama administration is now trying to back-peddle and claim that "It might take four or five years to get this straightened out."

Bottom-line, if things go really bad later in 2009 (and they probably WILL) and then continue to worsen in 2010, that's ALL THEIRS.

They were voted in for a fix, not to dabble around for five or six years.

SHOULD the economy worsen over the next two years, the GOP will almost certainly make HUGE gains in BOTH Houses of Congress, perhaps Gingrichian gains.

BUT, that could be all for nought, IF the Rockefeller-wing of that Party is able to blunt the Conservative win, by exerting "Moderate" control....remember, these are the same guys who forced Bush Sr. (the VERY SAME guy who ran in the 1980 GOP Primaries calling Reagan's Supply Side policies - "Voodoo Economics") on Reagan as VP. Reagan wanted either Gerry Ford or Paul Laxalt of Nevada.

George Bush Sr., saw no reason to move away from the Keynesian policies of Carter, Nixon and LBJ...he actually believed we could "make them work."

The same folks were all too ready to reverse course on the Gingrich policies that had delivered the FIRST federal budget cuts in over 100 years and some of the best economies post-WW II, basically "one of the best U.S. economy ever."

The so-called "Moderate Republicans are NOT friends of the Conservative base Seane-Anna, never have been and never will be.

machinepolitick said...

Good post. You are absolutely correct. George Bush and 'Compassionate Conservatism' have a big hand in the current situation. There's simply someone else in charge calling himself by a different title. The actions are the same.
If the Republican Party was serious about making changes, they would stop pushing Ron Paul out the back door. We need to focus on shrinking government, not growing it for purposes we approve while raging against 'liberal' pork. It's all bad for America.
The Hunter is right. We need to return to the principles of the Founding Fathers and the Constitution.

JMK said...

"If the Republican Party was serious about making changes, they would stop pushing Ron Paul out the back door. We need to focus on shrinking government, not growing it for purposes we approve while raging against 'liberal' pork. It's all bad for America." (MP)
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It's funny MP< I liked Ron Paul a LOT better from a distance.

He votes correctly ("Dr. NO") and he writes eloquently and elegantly in defense of individual LIBERTY.

His "Tom Perdue" (the chicken-guy) delivery, coupled with his affinity for some of the 9-11 Truther conspiracies hurt him bad.

There are now TWO "big government" camps within the GOP - the old guard "Rockefeller-wing" and now, the what can best be called "The Rudy-wing" - those who believe in the necessity of expanding the security apparatus of the state, mostly at the expense of the social apparatus of the state.

I think the latter holds more sway than the Rockefeller-wing does now. It certainly greatly influenced the Bush administration.

Libertarians are repulsed by the Rudy-wing, just as a lot of religious Conservatives are repulsed by the socially liberal Rockefeller-wing.

I interviewed the great Walter E Williams, back in 1992 and at that time, he'd just rebuffed the Libertarian Party's drafting him for a Presidential run.

One thing he said that day struck me, more than anything else, he noted, "If I were somehow elected President, there'd be riots in the streets, and I'm not talking about riots within the inner cities, there'd certainly be those, but the biggest would come from the middle class - all those people angry about no more government-subsidized small business loans, subsidized College loans, the loss of the home-mortgage deduction, subsidized art, and the host of other middle class handouts that we rarely consider."

I don't know what the answer is, but, I think Dr. Williams is right.

Seane-Anna said...

I don't think conservatives need to be cautious. We need to NOT be stupid, but that has little or nothing to do with being cautious.

Conservatives should NOT be afraid to get in-yo'-face if/when that's necessary. We shouldn't be so scared of appearing loony that we censor ourselves. Instead, we should grant ourselves the same freedom to unapologetically speak our minds as liberals grant themselves. Only when we state our beliefs forcefully and fearlessly will they and we be respected.

It's time we conservatives stop worrying about what the left thinks of us and start FIGHTING the left.

The Hunter said...

W's "compassionate conservatism" really ticks me off. The implication is that other "conservatives" are not compassionate.

The only thing W did that was different was learn the rule book of the liberals, in that he tried not to allow his opponents to define him.

Seane-Anna, those who really are "conservative" are polite and well-mannered. One can come in here to the "conservative" blogosphere and disagree, but as long as one is well-behaved, one is accepted. The demagogues, be they neo-libs or neo-cons, want the sound-byte -- TV is their medium, and these kind often make a statement, then filibuster their opponent for the remaining time scheduled for the encounter. I don't think you're advocating changing that part of it, but one needs to beware of the temptation to change and act like the other side (which neolibs and neocons are pretty much the same in my book). It's kind of like "enhanced interrogation" of accused terrorists -- we become the enemy.

Conservatism, in its true form, is inherently cautious, taking a look-before-you-leap approach.

By the way, it's not "the left" or "the right" -- we need to take a good, hard look at things, and divide it up between those with some degree of honesty, and those with none, like we have had in much of Washington for many years and continue to have now. Once we reinstate the rule of law in Washington, then we can debate politics.

Rachel said...

As much as I agree in certain aspects like W's big govt investment, the praise of Reagan is overreach. Remember the debt clock? Although that had been there forever, I remember how symbolic of the spending during the Reagan years. He sounded great because he cut back a lot of the social programs and gave heavy tax breaks on the wealthy. However he did spend up to 6% of the GDP making him the largest deficit spender of all time, with W actually coming up third after LBJ(at least by 2005). Part of that was the overwhelming Democrat control of Congress, but I would argue his defense spending as well as the War on Drugs, too.

As far as Medicare Part D, it seems that *everyone* had forgotten why it was brought up in the first place. It was a Democrat panacea to seniors, who are the most active voters. Either W succumbed to that or lose out senior votes for republicans as being seen as uncaring to the elderly. I support part D, but for fiscal conservatives, at least it was under Republican control. Now under Dem control, prepare for it to explode.

Also, don't forget that the W spending was a good chunk due to his own party's greed. W could have and should have been a voice of constraint, which would have done someting, but Congress is not made up of toddlers. They should have restrained themselves, thinking of their image in the long term. Right now, they are tainted, and all are punished. But to me I've found the conservative idea of fiscal constraint since Reagan contrary to what they claim.

Rachel said...

The Gingrich Congress was the FIRST Congress to cut the federal budget in over 100 years. That, along with slashing the Capital gains tax RATE to 15% created the booming late 1990s, with some of the lowest Misery Indexes in four decades AND all those budget SURPLUSES of the late ‘90s.

But don't forget, JMK, we had the dot-com boom - THAT as well as a realignment of world powers left us pretty much in the same political position as we were in 1946. Then the dot-com busted, 9/11 occured and the WOT. the Dot-com bust alone cost us 5 trillion in revenue; revenue that would have been paid to the govt. This is not a panacea towards W, just shows the economic upheaval we actually had since at least 2000. And don't forget we were (heck ARE) still in the midst of a credit bubble, so one could argue that out Great Realignment (as I prefer to call the credit crunch) came twofold.

You can tell I had coffee this morning :)

JMK said...

"I don't think conservatives need to be cautious. We need to NOT be stupid, but that has little or nothing to do with being cautious...We shouldn't be so scared of appearing loony that we censor ourselves. Instead, we should grant ourselves the same freedom to unapologetically speak our minds as liberals grant themselves." (Seane-Anna)
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Here's where and why I disagree, Seane-Anna, (1) I DON'T admire the far-left's style at all (The Hunter is right about the "polite Right") and (2) we're making the WRONG presumption in assesssing that "in your face liberalism won the day."

McCain LOST the 2008 election.

Keynesian Republicans LOST the 2008 election.

For Conservatives to engage in ODS as gleefully as the lunatic left gorged on BDS is not only foolish, in my view, but a recipe for disaster.

CAUTION is always a good thing.

CAUTION is not self-censorship...it's thinking about the implications of what we're saying.

Claiming that "the Obama administration wants to drive the economy into Depression", OR that "the Obama administration wants the U.S. attacked again," are intemperate, ill-advised remarks that have no evidence behind them.

CAUTION dicates that we (1) first clean up our own house and sweep out the Keynesians among us, (2) revile and assail POLICIES and NOT the people behind them - gratuitous personal attacks do us no good and (3) have a solution before we criticize things we disagree with...and a solution, more detailed than "Don't do that." We must be able to say, "Don't do X, when Y and Z would both work better, at lower cost and while maintaining more individual liberty.

There's nothing with being confrontational, we just need to be more CAUTIOUSLY confrontational.

JMK said...

"W's "compassionate conservatism" really ticks me off. The implication is that other "conservatives" are not compassionate." (The Hunter)
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"Compassionate Conservativism" has turned out to be a gateway for more Keynesian (Rockefeller-wing) policies for the GOP.

It was a disaster.

G W's strategy worked brilliantly - those two Supply Side tax cuts (the Cap Gains Rate cut and the across-the-board income tax rate cut BOTH INCREASED revenues and masked a LOT of Keynesian (big government) spending over the next six years.

I forget off hand who wrote it, but I read an Op-Ed piece a month or so back entitled Dark Days for Liberty, that author couldn't be more right, in my view.

JMK said...

"But to me I've found the conservative idea of fiscal constraint since Reagan contrary to what they claim." (Rachel)
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Yes Rachel, during Reagan's first seven years, he did expend over $1.5 trillion on national defense, a staggering amount by any standard.

Although, that military build-up has to be looked at in the context of those Cold War times. "That defense buildup, along with the Volcker induced the Fed's tight money policies (which were needed to control inflation) were primarily responsible for the deficit," said William A. Niskanen, president of the libertarian Cato Institute and a member of Reagan's Council of Economic Advisers. "The Cold War is over. Tight money has brought inflation down. Both of these policies looked risky at the time but look good in retrospect," he said.

BUT, the idea, put out by the likes of Paul Krugman, that Reagan’s tax cuts “COST the U.S. much needed revenues,” seems bogus. In an early measure of his (The Economic Recovery Act (ERTA), Reagan cut all income tax rates by twenty-five percent, with a 5 percent cut coming that October, the next 10 percent in July 1982, and the final 10 percent in July 1983. The law also reduced the top income tax rate from 70 percent to 50 percent, indexed tax rates to offset the impact of inflation, and increased the tax exemption on estates and gifts.

There followed sixty straight months of economic growth, the longest uninterrupted period of expansion since the government began keeping such statistics in 1854. Nearly fifteen million new jobs were created - a total of eighteen million by the time Reagan left office. Just under $20 trillion worth of goods and services, measured in actual dollars, were produced from 1982 to 1987. To give some notion of how much that is, by the end of 1987 America was producing about seven and a one-half times more every year than it produced in John Kennedy's last year as president.

That expansion was felt everywhere, including the government's tax revenues. Total federal receipts in 1982 were $618 billion. Five years later, federal receipts were just over $1 trillion, an increase of $398 billion...an incredible 68% in increase in revenues!

Detractors claim that “IF those NEW profits and incomes were taxed at the old rates, we’d have had far more in revenues, thus those cost us those revenues.”

NONSENSE!

IF it hadn’t been for those cuts and the investments and spending and job creation they spurred, there wouldn’t have been those new revenues to tax.

Moreover, as people respond to incentives, when tax rates rise, higher income individuals, with more disposable income simply save/DEFER more of their income/compensation in tax-deferred vehicles.

The “If these new income streams had been taxed at the old rates” canard is an absurdist argument.

Yes, Reagan failed to rein in the Tip O’Neill Congress, which spent $2 for every $1 of tax cuts and he himself engaged in a campaign of intense military spending that delivered HUGE dividends down the road, you really have to look at where America was when Reagan took office.

In FAR worse fiscal shape than we are now; double-digit inflation, high unemployment and a prime interest rate of 21.5 percent, the highest since the Civil War, along with the WORST annual Misery Index (22 in 1980) and the worst four year average (16.2 under Jimmy Carter).

That was Reagan’s start point...a MUCH deeper hole than is faced by the current administration and he turned it around almost immediately!

JMK said...

"But don't forget, JMK, we had the dot-com boom - THAT as well as a realignment of world powers left us pretty much in the same political position as we were in 1946." (Rachel)
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Yes, but how much of that dotcom bubble was spurred by a slashed Cap Gains rate (30% down to 20%) that incentivized investment AND changes in the IPO standards at the SEC?

The impact of some tax cuts are clear - Ireland cut its Corporate tax and went from economic basketcase to powerhouse virtually overnight, Reagan cut income and busines taxes and the U.S. economy grew to nearly 8X the size of the 1963 U.S. economy in just seven years! Tax revenues surged from slightly over $600 Billion in Carter's last year to over $1 TRILLION over that same period!

I really think those federal budget cuts AND that Capital Gains RATE cut did a LOT to incentivize investment and create an era of great growth and widespread prosperity.

Just my view on that.

WomanHonorThyself said...

There IS certainly hope that another economic failure primarily brought about and then intensified by Liberalism will return us to a new direction..We can certainly pray for this my friend!

Rachel said...

Yes, but how much of that dotcom bubble was spurred by a slashed Cap Gains rate (30% down to 20%) that incentivized investment AND changes in the IPO standards at the SEC?

hmmmm...didn't think about it that way. I guess one hand washes the other in good way. Dot-coms had cap gains cut to increase their business, and those fiscal incentives allow the expansion of dot-coms and other businesses.

Seane-Anna said...

JMK and Hunter, with all due respect, "the polite Right"? Please! The Right can't afford to be polite! I can't believe any conservative really thinks that will win us Brownie points with the Left. It won't. Instead,it's bringing a knife to a gun fight.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that the Left needs to be held to account, which rarely, if ever, happens. That's what made Bush Derangement Syndrome possible; liberals knew they could get away with it. They knew they wouldn't be held accountable for their hysteria, lies, and, yes, treason so they went full force. And now that their guy won they're all, "Let's be civil; let's be fair". BARF!!!!!!!!!

JMK and Hunter, the two of you can champion cautious conservatism,i.e, appeasement, and desperately hope that the alligator won't eat you. Me? I prefer to do things the Chicago way: they send one of ours to the hospital, we send one of theirs to the morgue.

Have a nice day.

JMK said...

Ratioanl thought is ALWAYS polite Seane-Anna.

The Left is only "the unhinged Left" because they act unhinged.

There are rational Leftists who fervently believe that free markets and individual Liberty benefit only those with the requisite skills and the self-motivated drive needed to thrive under such conditions. Those people argue that individualism and open markets (economic freedom) reward guile over the idealism of solidarity, competition over cooperation and cold reason over messy human emotion.

That CAN be politely debated.

To argue that "we ned to respond in kind" to the unhinged Left is to argue that "It's good to be unhinged."

I don't know what to say about that, except, "No, it's not."

In FACT, claiming that "We need to respond as aggressively and as unhinged as the far-Left," is appeasing the Left, as it's surrendering to the view that "Their scorched earth, personal attack-based strategy is legitimate and works best."

It does not.

For better or worse (I say for BETTER) we've been held to a different standard than the Left and will be, going forward, held to a different standard than the Left...the MSM sympathizes with them and reviles Conservatives.

Confronting the fallacies in Leftist arguments is the right way to go.

Making idiotic, "9-11 Truther-like" charges, like "Obama wants the United States attacked again," OR "The Obama administration WANTS to drive this economy into Depression, in order to establish some form of feudal socialism," embarrases Conservatism.

It's beneath us.

JMK said...

"...didn't think about it that way. I guess one hand washes the other in good way. Dot-coms had cap gains cut to increase their business, and those fiscal incentives allow the expansion of dot-coms and other businesses." (Rachel)
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Consider how bad the economy Reagan took over was - double digit unemployment and inflation rates (a whopping 22 Misery Index) and a prime rate of 21.5%!

Staggering numbers compared to the 7.5% unemployment rate, the -0.1% inflation rate (the 7.4 Misery Index) and a prime rate around 2%.

I'm certain that the Carter administration WANTED jobs creation and a much LOWER Misery Index, they just went about trying to accomplish those goals the wrong way.

When Reagan slashed the income tax and business taxes, that made investment far more appealing, far more profitable to investors.

The result was that 20 MILLION new jobs surge and tax revenues bulging FROM $618 BILLION/Annually TO over $1 TRILLION by 1987.

It would seem the SAME dynamic was at work when the Gingrich Congress and Bill Clinton slashed the Capital Gains rate FROM 30% to 20% and Clinton's SEC loosened IPO rules and margin rates.

Well, we've had six years of Keynesian policies and the Keynesianism is about to get accelerated.

I'm open minded and optimisitic...let's see how well it works.

Maybe we won't have a Carter redux.


Detractors claim that “IF those NEW profits and incomes were taxed at the old rates, we’d have had far more in revenues, thus those cost us those revenues.”

NONSENSE!

IF it hadn’t been for those cuts and the investments and spending and job creation they spurred, there wouldn’t have been those new revenues to tax.

JMK said...

"We can certainly pray for this my friend!" (Angel)
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To paraphrase the current POTUS, "Yes we can!"

The Hunter said...

Seane-Anna, using your logic, we should battle street gangs by recruiting our own street gangs. Using your logic, we should battle terrorists by becoming terrorists. And so on.

The result: both sides lose, and the only the devil wins.

It is possible to fight to win, while still being a knight in shining armor. Indeed, no country's military has a better record of victories than America -- and, no country's military has a better record of treating even "enemy" populations humanely than America, the Indian wars, Vietnam, etc., notwithstanding. That is what sets us apart; that is what makes America worth fighting for. If we lose this quality about ourselves, we destroy that which makes America special, and we become an enemy ourselves.

Don't think we have done as well as we have without God's blessing; and don't think He won't withdraw that blessing should we choose to fight evil with evil.

It's a race to hell, and all you're advocating is that we play follow the leader, or, better yet, that we try to pass the other guy and get to hell first. What I'm saying is it's a stupid race, and I won't go there.

Cheers! :)

Seane-Anna said...

JMK and Hunter, I hear what you're saying but I don't think the two of you are hearing me.

I was in no way implying we on the Right should become unhinged. What I was trying to say is that we need to stop acting like Neville Chamberlain and start acting like Sir Winston Churchill.

Scared, weak, appeasers like Neville Chamberlain get no respect and deserve none. Strong, resolute, principled warriors like Sir Winston Churchill DEMAND respect and get it even from their enemies. And they also WIN.

We are in a war for our nation's soul, and I want to win. I don't want to be among the losers sitting in the corner whimpering, "Well, at least we were polite." NO! I want the other side sitting in the corner whimpering, "We're never gonna mess with THEM again!", that's why I say we need to do things the Chicago way. And that doesn't mean throwing rationality to the wind, JMK.

Churchill did things the Chicago way vis-a-vis Hitler, not because he was unhinged, but because THAT'S WHAT THE GRAVITY OF THE SITUATION DEMANDED. JMK and Hunter, you don't take an aspirin to fight cancer, but that's what I feel you two are essentially advocating.

"Polite conservatism" is a trap just like "compassionate conservatism". Both succeed only in making us conservatives emasculate ourselves. Hunter and JMK, I don't want to fight evil with evil; I want to fight fire with fire. I want to do in this ideological war what Churchill did in the shooting war. If that makes me unhinged, so be it.

The Hunter said...

Seane-Anna,

Okay, now I gotcha. Thanks for clarifying.

First of all, as I said way up in comment No. 1, I am a radical and an extremist, not a conservative. :)

Speaking, though, as part of the "Conservative" movement, we seem to have these faux-conservatives like Bush and McCain as our standard-bearers. Another one I liked was Trent Lott, after Bob Dole resigned the Senate to run for President in 1996. I don't know what Senator Lott's political agenda was -- he showed no leadership, when he spoke to the media the only thing he was able to do was get the Repubicans branded as racists. But, he seemed polite. Perhaps he is an example of what you rightfully decry.

Too many Republicrats. I long ago noticed that the Democrat party had been hijacked by a loose coalition of extremists. Now, though, I increasingly notice that the Republican party has been hijacked by a coalition of crooks and some extremists.

JMK said...

"I don't think the two of you are hearing me.

"I was in no way implying we on the Right should become unhinged. What I was trying to say is that we need to stop acting like Neville Chamberlain and start acting like Sir Winston Churchill.

"Scared, weak, appeasers like Neville Chamberlain get no respect and deserve none."
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No, I've heard ou well from the start and on this point, you couldn't be more wrong, Seane-Anna.

Reckless and irresponsible charges like, "Obama wants to drive the economy into Depression" are NOT "strong, resolute, principled" arguments in favor of Coservatism, they harm our side by undermining real, actual arguments.

Claiming that the Obama administration "Wants the U.S. attacked again" is as foolish a thought as are the 9-11 Truther conspiracies that "the Bush administration was behind the 9/11 attacks." Both are as crazy as the idea that "Obama wants to see the U.S. attacked again."

They force other, more principled and reasonable Conservatives o distance themselves from those who traffic in personal attack and outright hate.

Personal animus is NOT a strategy, it's a dead end.

Seane-Anna said...

Hunter, thanks for finally understanding me! The example you gave of Trent Lott, a polite Republican who, as you point out, succeeded only in getting his party branded racist, is a good example of politeness achieving nothing for our side. Thanks again for your understanding; it means a lot!

JMK, my friend, my friend! It looks like we will just have to agree to disagree on this one. I will say that I'm a little disappointed to see you so concerned with what liberals think of us. I can tell you, JMK, what they think of us. They HATE us! And nothing will change that.

JMK, the Left, like radical Islam, doesn't want co-existence; it wants conquest. Rational debate is NOT on its agenda. The Left is gunning for us and you're worried about whether or not we conservatives are nice to Obama?! You need to rearrange your priorities, my friend!

JMK, I've never advocated that we conservatives spread lies, gossip, innuendos, etc. about Obama. For instance, I would never say on my blog that Obama is a Muslim because that's just not true. He's not a Muslim and saying that he is would make me lose credibility.

If we conservatives are going to worry about anything it should be our credibility. We shouldn't spread falsehoods but we SHOULD feel as free to mock, ridicule, and/or satirize Obama as liberals felt to mock, ridicule, and/or satirize Bush. So long as the particular issue or quality Obama is being mocked, ridiculed, or satirized for is true, we should let him have it. But I know you don't agree. Sigh.

Like I said, we'll just have to agree to disagree. You keep bringing your knife to this gun fight and hope for the best. Me? I'm packing a Glock 9, an AR15, AND an Uzi!

JMK said...

"I will say that I'm a little disappointed to see you so concerned with what liberals think of us." (Seane-Anna)
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As I said I don't care what ANYONE thinks of US.

What I DO care about is being able to respect other Conservatives.

Only the worst kind of hypocrite would take offense at the widespread BDS (ie. referring to GW as "the Commander-in-Chimp" and "chimp-boy" etc.) and then engage in the same kind of thoughtless, brain-dead personal attacks.

I can't respect that.

IF perhaps there were some way to argue, "Look around! Those tactics WORKED...the Left won the elections of 2006 and 2008 buy using them," I'd have to reconsider.

Of course THAT'S NOT what happened in 2006, when Blue Dog (Conservative) Democrats ousted Republicans in places like Indiana, Kansas, South Carolina, etc. AND it DIDN'T happen in 2008 either!

In 2008 a very weak milqtoast "Rockefeller Republican (McCain) ran a losing campaign and lost in a year in which the apolitical majority of Amerians (about 60% of the nation are apolitical to their cores) blamed the GOP for the economic mess.

So, if, as I insist, the rabid-dog tactics of the radical Left didn't help in 2006 OR 2008, then it really isn't much of a strategy, is it?

And it certainly isn't worth emulating.

The MSM is appx 80% liberal....not "radically Left," but committed liberals, so BDS was "no big deal" and as a result, the 60% of Americans who are apolitical didn't really know, or care much about it.

The MSM WILL make sure that those folks know about ODS though....and that's "fair," those in the MSM have a right to their own views and to support positions they think are correct.

Without a a good chunk of that 60% of apolitical Americans, Conservatism is DONE. We NEED to appeal to those folks who couldn't care less about politics, policies, etc. - if we don't, Conservatism is DEAD.

In fact, a good signal will be 2010. IF, the economy gets significantly worse and the Democrats still maintain both Houses of Congress, I'd say that "war is over."

By 2012, they'll have cemented both Houses into permament Democratic majorities via re-districting and through "mobile vote scams (moving "homeless voters" around to various polling places) via ACORN, etc. and there may be no turning back by then.

No, I'm adamant that I will treat those few Conservatives who engage in reckless and irresponsible ODS the same way I did liberals who engaged in reckless and irresponsible BDS....I think both groups have to be marginalized.

Just my view on that.

JMK said...

"If we conservatives are going to worry about anything it should be our credibility. We shouldn't spread falsehoods but we SHOULD feel as free to mock, ridicule, and/or satirize Obama as liberals felt to mock, ridicule, and/or satirize Bush." (Seane-Anna)
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That's what I've said!

But claiming "Obama wants to drive the U.S. economy into Depression," OR "The Obama administration wants the U.S. to be attacked again," aren't examples of "satire and ridicule," they're the Conservative equivalent of comparing G W Bush to Hitler and the Bush administration to the Third Reich....THAT was BDS, just as surely as the former, IS ODS.

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