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Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 08:45 AM
ballot box
Democratic Values
How to start winning the red states.

By William Saletan
Posted Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2004, at 1:15 PM PT

Hey, Democrats!

One silver lining in last night's debacle is that for another 24 hours or so, you might be open to rethinking what your party stands for. So, while I have your attention, here's an idea.

Go back to being the party of responsibility.

I'm not talking about scolding people. I'm talking about rewarding them. Be the party that rewards ordinary people who do what they're supposed to do—and protects them from those who don't.

If you think this kind of moral talk is anathema, you're the sort of person Karl Rove wants to be running the Democratic Party. Get out, or get a new attitude. Nearly 60 million people came out to vote for George W. Bush yesterday because they think that he represents their values and that you don't. Prove them wrong and you'll be the majority party again.

How? Start by changing the way you talk about pocketbook issues. Remember Bill Clinton's commitment to help people who "work hard and play by the rules"? Your positions on taxes and labor would be assets instead of liabilities if you explained them in moral terms. The minimum wage rewards work. Repealing the estate tax helps rich people get richer without risk or effort. Lax corporate oversight allows big businesses to evade taxes, deceive small investors, and raid pension funds.

Yes, Republicans will accuse you of waging a class war. I can see you cringing already. Get off your knees and fight. It is a war, but it isn't a class war. It's a culture war, and if you talk about it that way, you'll win it.

Some of you are dismayed by the emergence of a huge voting bloc of churchgoers. Stop viewing this as a threat, and start viewing it as an opportunity. Socially conservative blue-collar workers don't believe in the free market. They believe in the work ethic. Bush wins their votes by equating the free market with the work ethic. Show them where the free market betrays the work ethic, and they'll vote for the party of the work ethic—you—against the party of the free market.

What's your strongest issue among these voters? Outsourcing. Why? Because it's the issue on which you talk most naturally about right and wrong. It's also the issue on which you're most comfortable appealing to nationalism. That's another lesson you need to learn. People are voting Republican because they think you're weak. And, let's face it, you are weak. You say you'll defend this country, but then you go on about consulting other governments, cultivating goodwill, and playing well with others. You make a world full of terrorists sound like kindergarten.

Democrats in the Roosevelt-Truman years didn't have this problem. They called tyrants by their name, and they didn't sound like they were faking it. A party that believes in right and wrong at home must be assertive about right and wrong abroad. You need a serious antiterrorist agenda. Otherwise, when you object to a war like Iraq, you sound like the peace party.

I'm not asking you to act like you care about this stuff. I'm asking you to care about it for real, and not just at election time. When a Republican president runs a TV ad accusing you of failing to protect us from wolves, you should be able to point out that he's the one who emptied our shotgun into a fox, leaving us helpless against the wolves. And you should sound credible saying it.

Once you eliminate the sincerity gap between you and the Republicans on national security, you can exploit the reverse sincerity gap between you and them on responsibility. Think about the values of our armed forces: shared risk, shared sacrifice, and reciprocal duty between officers and soldiers, regardless of race or class. Those are your values.

When leaders betray troops through bad planning and false pretenses for war, that should be your issue. When Republicans cut taxes for the rich while the nation is at war and the Treasury is empty, that should be your issue. When soldiers from poor families die while corporations skim from the war budget, that should be your issue. I've heard John Kerry talk about each of these issues separately, but each time, he sounded opportunistic. To be powerful, they must flow from a common message. That message is responsibility.

All the issues Democrats like to run on—education, the environment, the deficit, energy independence—would be vastly more powerful if united under a single theme. Clean up your mess. Take care of your children. Pay your debts. Stand on your own two feet. It all comes down to responsibility.

The Democrat who talks this way most naturally is John Edwards. (I know, I've got to stop advertising for him.) He's the one who frames every issue in terms of values. He's the one who argued during the presidential primaries that Republicans were favoring unearned wealth over work. He's the one who connected Republican tax policies to make the point. You don't have to teach him the language, because he learned it growing up in one of those red states.

So, there's your candidate, and there's your message. Now go and live it, so you won't have to fake it.

Amnorix
11-04-2004, 08:47 AM
I haven't read this yet, but will.

I'm considering my own post regarding a reorientation that the Democrats need to effectuate.

The simple reality is that since Newt Gingrinch and friends swept to power in '94 (other than the reelection of Clinton in 1996, in which he failed to take Congress back), the Democrats have won NOTHING worth talking about.

Democrats clearly aren't connecting with enough voters on national issues, and that neesd to change if they want to win back Congress and/or the WH.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 08:50 AM
Wow, even the conservative democrats don't get it.

Life is good for the right today.

KCTitus
11-04-2004, 08:51 AM
LOL...I got to the last paragraph and it all fell apart. Trial lawyers are not the solution.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 08:57 AM
Wow, even the conservative democrats don't get it.

Life is good for the right today.

I'm pleased Bush won; no doubt about it. I like Bush, but some of the critique the left levels against him is correct....but IMHO Bush was the better choice. Kerry was NOT a good candidate. Otherwise, he could have won....

However, I fighting for the soul of my party, and the future of my party.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 08:59 AM
LOL...I got to the last paragraph and it all fell apart. Trial lawyers are not the solution.

Edwards wouldn't be my first choice, or second for that matter.

However, he does "get it" and he is a gifted politician--not Bill Clinton, but gifted. His trial lawyer background would hurt him, and he'd have to moderate some of his more leftist positions.

Hoover
11-04-2004, 09:00 AM
I think the dems would be better served if a guy like Evan Bayh was the nominee

KCTitus
11-04-2004, 09:05 AM
Edwards wouldn't be my first choice, or second for that matter.

However, he does "get it" and he is a gifted politician--not Bill Clinton, but gifted. His trial lawyer background would hurt him, and he'd have to moderate some of his more leftist positions.

I dont think he does...Edwards life's work before politics was the antithesis to personal responsibilty.

Brando
11-04-2004, 09:09 AM
Richardson/Obama that's the ticket I want to see in 08

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 09:19 AM
I'm pleased Bush won; no doubt about it. I like Bush, but some of the critique the left levels against him is correct....but IMHO Bush was the better choice. Kerry was NOT a good candidate. Otherwise, he could have won....

I agree, but that criticism means nothing to me since they would be even worse if they held the power.

However, I fighting for the soul of my party, and the future of my party.

And this is what I was talking about, you don't get why your party is losing. That is obvious from the prescribed "cure" you offer. What you have suggested might help a little, but in the end it still will mean your demise.

It's not the framing of the argument that is the sole problem, it is the argument itself.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 10:09 AM
I think the dems would be better served if a guy like Evan Bayh was the nominee

I could vote for him; depending on the alternative. :thumb:

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 10:13 AM
I dont think he does...Edwards life's work before politics was the antithesis to personal responsibilty.

Personally, I'm givin' him the benefit of the doubt....maybe he LEARNED from that experience.

We need tort reform, no doubt; but we also need corperations that exercise 'responsibility' too. Coercion, sadly, is sometimes needed to get corporations to do the 'right thing' and to behave with 'civic responsiblity.' I'd prefer an entirely "free market" system; however, regulations are necessary to rein in corporate excesses and greed.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 10:15 AM
...It's not the framing of the argument that is the sole problem, it is the argument itself.

I'm missing something, I guess; what "argument" am I making that is a 'problem' in your view? Seriously? :hmmm:

KCTitus
11-04-2004, 10:18 AM
Personally, I'm givin' him the benefit of the doubt....maybe he LEARNED from that experience.

We need tort reform, no doubt; but we also need corperations that exercise 'responsibility' too. Coercion, sadly, is sometimes needed to get corporations to do the 'right thing' and to behave with 'civic responsiblity.' I'd prefer an entirely "free market" system; however, regulations are necessary to rein in corporate excesses and greed.

Maybe...Im highly skeptical. We can disagree. ;)

Ive never advocated 'no regulation' on corporations, quite the contrary. I find much of the regulation to be onerous and sometimes downright unrealistic in many situations. Corporations are in the business of making money, they are not jobs programs.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 10:21 AM
I'm missing something, I guess; what "argument" am I making that is a 'problem' in your view? Seriously? :hmmm:


Let's take this portion of the article as an example -

Yes, Republicans will accuse you of waging a class war. I can see you cringing already. Get off your knees and fight. It is a war, but it isn't a class war. It's a culture war, and if you talk about it that way, you'll win it.

This is complete bullshit. No matter how you frame the argument, you are trying to say that it is moral to take more from those who have become successful in life, it is moral to punish those who succeed.

You can try and put a moral spin on your argument all you want, but it is a lie. Punishing the successful, simply because they are successful, is not moral, it is in fact the exact opposite.

It is your party's stances that hurt the party more than the way they frame them, because they are the anti-thesis of what America is all about.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 10:22 AM
...Ive never advocated 'no regulation' on corporations, quite the contrary. I find much of the regulation to be onerous and sometimes downright unrealistic in many situations. Corporations are in the business of making money, they are not jobs programs.

I agree regulation isn't always efficient or the best alternative.

However, society allows corporations to make money; corporations owe society the courtesy of behaving responsibly.

BIG_DADDY
11-04-2004, 10:24 AM
Democrats clearly aren't connecting with enough voters on national issues, and that neesd to change if they want to win back Congress and/or the WH.

1. Lower taxes don't raise them were sick of the excessive spending on both sides. I know this goes against everything the Dems stand for but cut spending dramatically and lower taxes eventually and you will get a lot of votes.

2. LEAVE OUR FREAKING GUNS ALONE, why don't the fvcking moron's that run the party get this one is beyond me.

3. Affirmative action is legal discrimination against whites you don't have a chance if you back this horseshit.

KCTitus
11-04-2004, 10:24 AM
I agree regulation isn't always efficient or the best alternative.

However, society allows corporations to make money; corporations owe society the courtesy of behaving responsibly.

I agree...however, something tells me that we'd disagree on what 'behaving responsibly' would entail.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 10:28 AM
...You can try and put a moral spin on your argument all you want, but it is a lie. Punishing the successful, simply because they are successful, is not moral, it is in fact the exact opposite.

It is your party's stances that hurt the party more than the way they frame them, because they are the anti-thesis of what America is all about.

First, let me say....I'm a very staunch supporter of Capitalism; and in an IDEAL world, the economy would be entirely "free market."

However, I don't think that reasonable regulatory policies, and reasonable tax codes are "punishing the successful." Defining reasonable of course, can be a difficult task. However, I hope you aren't saying that the government should NOT engage in policies that encourage corporations and business to behave responsibly--because some level of that is necessary IMHO.

KC Jones
11-04-2004, 10:34 AM
I think big points could be scored by democrats by adopting positions favoring competition and encouraging small businesses. Too much comes out of Washinton D.C. today to entrench large corporations market positions and reduce their need to compete.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 10:39 AM
1. Lower taxes don't raise them were sick of the excessive spending on both sides. I know this goes against everything the Dems stand for but cut spending dramatically and lower taxes eventually and you will get a lot of votes.

2. LEAVE OUR FREAKING GUNS ALONE, why don't the fvcking moron's that run the party get this one is beyond me.

3. Affirmative action is legal discrimination against whites you don't have a chance if you back this horseshit.

I agree with you, you are right.

However, in fairness.....Dems have a point when they say:

1. Americans WANT and DEMAND a certain level of "programs and services;" Taxes are how we pay for what Americans DEMAND of our politicians. The problem is we WANT more than we are willing to PAY for. Of course, Americans also disagree on the level and types of services the government should provide.

2. Gun ownership is fine. Arguing for NO reasonable regulation of guns is what most Democrats have a problem with--because in THEIR communities guns cause lots of problems. Why would anyone oppose REASONABLE restrictions on the right, so long as you can still have a gun if you are a decent and law-abiding citizen?

3. The time for affirmative action programs HAS passed; however, should we allow racist, sexist, and bigoted people to discriminate against people without fear of repurcussions? If you end the "concept" of affirmative action, HOW do you stop people from illegally discriminating against certain groups of people?

Compromise, of course, is needed in each of these areas. The problem is people on both sides are SO ENTRENCHED in their own position--in their own isistence that THEY are right, that reasonable compromise and consensus are difficult to reach. :banghead:

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 10:41 AM
First, let me say....I'm a very staunch supporter of Capitalism; and in an IDEAL world, the economy would be entirely "free market."

However, I don't think that reasonable regulatory policies, and reasonable tax codes are "punishing the successful." Defining reasonable of course, can be a difficult task. However, I hope you aren't saying that the government should NOT engage in policies that encourage corporations and business to behave responsibly--because some level of that is necessary IMHO.


Where did I say anything about corporations and business? I am talking about the people (yeah I know, it is supposed to be your party that thinks about them). I am talking about unfair taxation of the general populace.

Now if you are willing to say that you would support a flat tax, then we have something to work with. If not, and you think the progressive tax policy is the way to go, you have no moral basis for argument, even if you find a way to present it as such.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 10:50 AM
Where did I say anything about corporations and business? I am talking about the people (yeah I know, it is supposed to be your party that thinks about them). I am talking about unfair taxation of the general populace.

Now if you are willing to say that you would support a flat tax, then we have something to work with. If not, and you think the progressive tax policy is the way to go, you have no moral basis for argument, even if you find a way to present it as such.

I have no problem with a flat tax. I like the idea. I don't like a HARSH progressive tax, I WOULD find the flat tax as an acceptable alternative, depending on the specifics.

IMO, part of the specifics should include no real "loopholes" for ANYONE--including the mortgage deduction and other popular "write offs" under the current code.

The whole tax code needs to be revamped and simplified, no doubt. HOW to go about that is a difficult thing to reach consensus on, but it's something we need to do. Unfortunately, the wealthy and corporations BENEFIT from current loopholes (I KNOW they still pay the vast majority of taxes, yes) that they would fight to preserve.

Personally though, I'm in favor of considering a "flat tax," absolutely. :thumb:

Stinger
11-04-2004, 11:04 AM
I have been listening to airamerica for comedic value they were just talking about Hillary and Obama and they said and I quote:

"If middle America didn't vote for the handsome white, war hero. They are going to love the career white NY congress/business women and a black man."

:shake:

If this is the new attitude for the Democratic party you all will be in more trouble than you are now. They just don't get it.

IMO you need some new leadrship, and I expect a power struggle to rear its ugly head in the next year. Ted Kennedy and his faction vs a more moderate faction of the party. It will be intersting to see which they choose.

KC Jones
11-04-2004, 11:06 AM
Now if you are willing to say that you would support a flat tax, then we have something to work with. If not, and you think the progressive tax policy is the way to go, you have no moral basis for argument, even if you find a way to present it as such.

Why bother with a flat rate? Wouldn't a flat poll tax be the fairest possible tax?

The reason, is because it's not pragmatic. The average person couldn't afford to pay ~ $10K per member of their household. The flat rate simplifies the tax code and removes loopholes, so for that reason I'd be for it.

OTOH, a real pragmatist would take a look at tax models and the effect on the economy. The best model (theoretically) is a bell curve rate. Anyone at the bottom of the income ladder spends every dollar they earn just to survive. By not taxing people who make the most (or taxing them very little) you strongly encourage investment in the U.S. The worlds wealthiest would be pumping money into our system or moving here at a maddening rate to earn tax free income.

Just throwing some ideas out there.

Right now something like the bell curve exists to some extent through loopholes in a very complex tax code.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 11:13 AM
I have no problem with a flat tax. I like the idea. I don't like a HARSH progressive tax, I WOULD find the flat tax as an acceptable alternative, depending on the specifics.

IMO, part of the specifics should include no real "loopholes" for ANYONE--including the mortgage deduction and other popular "write offs" under the current code.

The whole tax code needs to be revamped and simplified, no doubt. HOW to go about that is a difficult thing to reach consensus on, but it's something we need to do. Unfortunately, the wealthy and corporations BENEFIT from current loopholes (I KNOW they still pay the vast majority of taxes, yes) that they would fight to preserve.

Personally though, I'm in favor of considering a "flat tax," absolutely. :thumb:


Well then once again you find yourself in the minority of your party. If the democratic party would be open to such a proposal, they could then make a legitimate moral claim (on this issue).

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 11:17 AM
Why bother with a flat rate? Wouldn't a flat poll tax be the fairest possible tax?

The reason, is because it's not pragmatic. The average person couldn't afford to pay ~ $10K per member of their household. The flat rate simplifies the tax code and removes loopholes, so for that reason I'd be for it.

OTOH, a real pragmatist would take a look at tax models and the effect on the economy. The best model (theoretically) is a bell curve rate. Anyone at the bottom of the income ladder spends every dollar they earn just to survive. By not taxing people who make the most (or taxing them very little) you strongly encourage investment in the U.S. The worlds wealthiest would be pumping money into our system or moving here at a maddening rate to earn tax free income.

Just throwing some ideas out there.

Right now something like the bell curve exists to some extent through loopholes in a very complex tax code.


Actually, the flat tax is a second choice for me, I prefer a national sales tax. I simply used the flat tax as a test. SDC passed, I don't think most of his party would. Thus, they will continue to spiral downwards (so long as my party chooses people who can effectively comminucate why the otherside's "moral" argument is bunk).

BIG_DADDY
11-04-2004, 11:23 AM
I agree with you, you are right.

However, in fairness.....Dems have a point when they say:

1. Americans WANT and DEMAND a certain level of "programs and services;" Taxes are how we pay for what Americans DEMAND of our politicians. The problem is we WANT more than we are willing to PAY for. Of course, Americans also disagree on the level and types of services the government should provide.

2. Gun ownership is fine. Arguing for NO reasonable regulation of guns is what most Democrats have a problem with--because in THEIR communities guns cause lots of problems. Why would anyone oppose REASONABLE restrictions on the right, so long as you can still have a gun if you are a decent and law-abiding citizen?

3. The time for affirmative action programs HAS passed; however, should we allow racist, sexist, and bigoted people to discriminate against people without fear of repurcussions? If you end the "concept" of affirmative action, HOW do you stop people from illegally discriminating against certain groups of people?

Compromise, of course, is needed in each of these areas. The problem is people on both sides are SO ENTRENCHED in their own position--in their own isistence that THEY are right, that reasonable compromise and consensus are difficult to reach. :banghead:

1. Reasonable isn't a never ending increase in taxes and ways to tax the libbies are way over that line.

2. I hate almost any gun legislation. Outside of retards and people on probation or parole there should be no gun legislation.

3. It's really quite simple, admission to college should go to the most qualified person.

Hiring people is much different. I personally have taken a less qualified person before because our personalities matched and I felt I could count on them more. lil momma used to run operations in health clubs. One day I noticed she had an all male front desk which is unheard of so I asked what that was all about. She said she was sick of all the drama the girls brought to the table so she just hired men they were much easier to manage and you could count on them to be at their shift. I know another guy who would only hire ugly women for his front desk because the hot women always brought the drama and lawsuits. This is a much harder area to regulate and should really be left alone unless you’re hiring for government positions. You have the huevos to be in business for yourself you should be able to hire who you think will make your best team member.

Logical
11-04-2004, 11:43 AM
I have no problem with a flat tax. I like the idea. I don't like a HARSH progressive tax, I WOULD find the flat tax as an acceptable alternative, depending on the specifics.

IMO, part of the specifics should include no real "loopholes" for ANYONE--including the mortgage deduction and other popular "write offs" under the current code.

The whole tax code needs to be revamped and simplified, no doubt. HOW to go about that is a difficult thing to reach consensus on, but it's something we need to do. Unfortunately, the wealthy and corporations BENEFIT from current loopholes (I KNOW they still pay the vast majority of taxes, yes) that they would fight to preserve.

Personally though, I'm in favor of considering a "flat tax," absolutely. :thumb:

The largest and most profitable real estate market in the world depends on those mortgage deductions. Take them away and our real estate markets would collapse. In the US the only true savings is in home equity. Destroy that and you will bring this economy to its knees. There would be no reason to own over rent if not for the mortgage deduction. Big corporations who would still have investment tax loopholes would buy up all the property and we would all be at the mercy of them for paying for our housing.

That is one horrible idea you are proposing.

KC Jones
11-04-2004, 11:57 AM
If you're going to be a strict constitutionalist regarding the 2nd amendment we shouldn't prevent private individuals from owning any sort arms. If you can afford it you should be able to own a tank, artillery, mortars, thermonuclear weapons, etc.

Otherwise you're drawing a distinction between what kinds of arms are acceptible to own and what arms represent a signifigant danger to society at large such that private ownership should be restricted. If we're making that distinction it's only a question of where the line should be drawn, not whether the line should be drawn at all.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 12:00 PM
.... In the US the only true savings is in home equity. Destroy that and you will bring this economy to its knees.

I respectfully disagree; I think you are exaggerating a bit here.

"Home Equity" is fine. I understand your point...but if you allow THAT deduction, it becomes increasingly difficult to deny other "justifiable" deductions.

Flat tax, period should mean precisely that, IMHO. As Russ has suggested, I do think a national sales tax would be even more preferable....as long as some steps were taken to ease the burden on those in lower-socioeconomic groups.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 12:02 PM
I respectfully disagree; I think you are exaggerating a bit here.

"Home Equity" is fine. I understand your point...but if you allow THAT deduction, it becomes increasingly difficult to deny other "justifiable" deductions.

Flat tax, period should mean precisely that, IMHO. As Russ has suggested, I do think a national sales tax would be even more preferable....as long as some steps were taken to ease the burden on those in lower-socioeconomic groups.


Here you go getting all liberal again. What exactly are you proposing when you say this?

KCTitus
11-04-2004, 12:03 PM
If you're going to be a strict constitutionalist regarding the 2nd amendment we shouldn't prevent private individuals from owning any sort arms. If you can afford it you should be able to own a tank, artillery, mortars, thermonuclear weapons, etc.

Aside from the fact that when the 2nd ammendment was written, Nuclear weapons and tanks were not invented yet. Is there historical evidence of citizens owning cannons or battleships back when the 2nd ammendment was written? I'd be interested to know....I have my doubts, rather I think this is just taking it to an absurd extreme.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 12:03 PM
If you're going to be a strict constitutionalist regarding the 2nd amendment we shouldn't prevent private individuals from owning any sort arms. If you can afford it you should be able to own a tank, artillery, mortars, thermonuclear weapons, etc.

Otherwise you're drawing a distinction between what kinds of arms are acceptible to own and what arms represent a signifigant danger to society at large such that private ownership should be restricted. If we're making that distinction it's only a question of where the line should be drawn, not whether the line should be drawn at all.

US v. Miller allows the federal government and states to regulate private gun ownership. Period.

Specific regulations are subject to scrutiny if they are not deemed "reasonable," however state and federal government have the "authority" to regulate it. Politically speaking, they choose to tread very lightly in the area because of the historical tradition of guns in the country as well as the political fallout in many areas of supporting gun "regulation."

The fact is, they have the "right" to regulate it; they have simply been prudent in not pursuing that right vigorously.

KC Jones
11-04-2004, 12:08 PM
Aside from the fact that when the 2nd ammendment was written, Nuclear weapons and tanks were not invented yet. Is there historical evidence of citizens owning cannons or battleships back when the 2nd ammendment was written? I'd be interested to know....I have my doubts, rather I think this is just taking it to an absurd extreme.


Actually, there's plenty of evidence of private citizens owning cannons. Usually they were aboard ships. If you're going to restrict the 2nd amendments according to what was techinically available in 1776 vs today, then should you restrict newer gun technologies like armor piercing shells or automatic weapons? The point of the 2nd amendment was that the armed populace could overthrow a tyrant if need be. In todays world that'd be impossible without heavy equipment that could match what the government has in its possession.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 12:10 PM
Here you go getting all liberal again. What exactly are you proposing when you say this?

People who are truly poor, in spending money on the necessities of life....food, basic clothing, utilities and such.....COULD be (should be?) sparred the full burden of taxation for such things. It's why many states don't tax food or clothing.

I'm not saying they shouldn't pay anything, because they should. But those spending money on luxury items, expensive discretionary items, and anything ABOVE basic subsistence should shoulder a 'full tax.' I simply think that is a courtesy we, as a society can afford.

Why tax anyone for food? Make it up when they purchase a vehicle, or shop at a "boutique?" Poor folks would still pay a "tax" on their Chevy or their Walmart clothing purchase, but rich folks buying a Lexxus and Ralphe Lauren fashions would be paying more....to me that's "fair," that's reasonable.

KCTitus
11-04-2004, 12:12 PM
Actually, there's plenty of evidence of private citizens owning cannons. Usually they were aboard ships. If you're going to restrict the 2nd amendments according to what was techinically available in 1776 vs today, then should you restrict newer gun technologies like armor piercing shells or automatic weapons? The point of the 2nd amendment was that the armed populace could overthrow a tyrant if need be. In todays world that'd be impossible without heavy equipment that could match what the government has in its possession.

"technically available", "strict constitutionalist"...blah, blah, blah.

my point was arguing the absurd, is absurd.

If the anti gun agenda wasnt to ban guns entirely, this wouldnt be an issue. Since that's their aim, there's going to be a fight about the issue and it has nothing to do with nuclear weapons or tanks or what was 'tecnically available' in 1776.

Lightning Rod
11-04-2004, 12:13 PM
I think that one could either go with a national sales tax and eliminate all deductions or one could go with a national Flat tax with interest on your primary residence being Tax deductible, no property tax, with no sales tax on food or medicine. Along with either of these the fed and State governments would need to learn some fiscal responsibility.

KC Jones
11-04-2004, 12:20 PM
"technically available", "strict constitutionalist"...blah, blah, blah.

my point was arguing the absurd, is absurd.

If the anti gun agenda wasnt to ban guns entirely, this wouldnt be an issue. Since that's their aim, there's going to be a fight about the issue and it has nothing to do with nuclear weapons or tanks or what was 'tecnically available' in 1776.

Some people want to ban all guns.

Some people want to restrict what kind of guns everybody can own.

Some people want to restrict what kind of people can own guns.

I'm just trying to make the point that the precedent has been set to regulate weapons and there are some good reasons for it. I don't want to outlaw guns. I just want to have sensible policies. Hunters are the best conservationists in this country, and I would encourage people to take up hunting - complete with firearms. It's true people can illegally get a weapon really quickly, but I think having a background check and a waiting period isn't too horribly awful either.

If you think I'm being absurd by pointing out absudities that are possible in taking an absurd position, then uh... well that's you're opinion.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 12:23 PM
People who are truly poor, in spending money on the necessities of life....food, basic clothing, utilities and such.....COULD be (should be?) sparred the full burden of taxation for such things. It's why many states don't tax food or clothing.

I'm not saying they shouldn't pay anything, because they should. But those spending money on luxury items, expensive discretionary items, and anything ABOVE basic subsistence should shoulder a 'full tax.' I simply think that is a courtesy we, as a society can afford.

Why tax anyone for food? Make it up when they purchase a vehicle, or shop at a "boutique?" Poor folks would still pay a "tax" on their Chevy or their Walmart clothing purchase, but rich folks buying a Lexxus and Ralphe Lauren fashions would be paying more....to me that's "fair," that's reasonable.


Ooohhh, you are so close, yet so far......

As to the specific items that would be taxed, I have no idea, that can be worked out any number of ways.

What I am foggy on is if you are saying that only the poor should not be taxed for food and the like. If so, I must vehemently disagree. Any item that is taxed is to be done so for all people, and at the same rate (sticking to the flat tax principle here).

One of the problems we have today is that not everyone shares in the tax burden, which puts more pressure on those who do. Everyone needs to pull their own weight. And this is why a consumption tax will be better than the income tax, people will have all of their income up front and be able allocate the funds as need be, thus making it easier for the poor to pay taxes as they have the choice on which items/services they choose to pay taxes on.

KCTitus
11-04-2004, 12:27 PM
Some people want to ban all guns.

Some people want to restrict what kind of guns everybody can own.

Some people want to restrict what kind of people can own guns.

I'm just trying to make the point that the precedent has been set to regulate weapons and there are some good reasons for it. I don't want to outlaw guns. I just want to have sensible policies. Hunters are the best conservationists in this country, and I would encourage people to take up hunting - complete with firearms. It's true people can illegally get a weapon really quickly, but I think having a background check and a waiting period isn't too horribly awful either.

If you think I'm being absurd by pointing out absudities that are possible in taking an absurd position, then uh... well that's you're opinion.

Not some people, the activists want to ban all guns. Why is it that the areas with the strictest gun laws have the worst murder rates? Gun laws dont protect the innocent they protect the criminal.

I dont have a problem with sensible policies, but the 94 assault weapons ban was nothing more than a silly law that was a further step toward the final goal--it had nothing to do with the guns other than the way they looked. Incremental steps to make 'banning' acceptable.

BIG_DADDY
11-04-2004, 12:30 PM
Actually, there's plenty of evidence of private citizens owning cannons. Usually they were aboard ships. If you're going to restrict the 2nd amendments according to what was techinically available in 1776 vs today, then should you restrict newer gun technologies like armor piercing shells or automatic weapons? The point of the 2nd amendment was that the armed populace could overthrow a tyrant if need be. In todays world that'd be impossible without heavy equipment that could match what the government has in its possession.

Absolute BS. No firearm restrictions for anyone other than people on probabtion or parole. The military would be walking in to quicksand if they turned on the populace of this country if we have gun laws like this. Throw away your rights if you want but stay the fvck away from me and mine.

KC Jones
11-04-2004, 12:40 PM
Not some people, the activists want to ban all guns. Why is it that the areas with the strictest gun laws have the worst murder rates? Gun laws dont protect the innocent they protect the criminal.

I dont have a problem with sensible policies, but the 94 assault weapons ban was nothing more than a silly law that was a further step toward the final goal--it had nothing to do with the guns other than the way they looked. Incremental steps to make 'banning' acceptable.

yeah - you have to watch out for those incremental steps and the nutjobs that would steer it too far.

I can think of good reasons for banning or carefully regulating fully automatic and semi automatic weapons. I mean the only thing they are good for is killing a really big number of people really quickly. A handgun, shotgun, rifle, etc. is plenty for home defense or for hunting. The only reason their so widely available illegally is because they were legally available to begin with. I do think the weapons ban was poorly written and it needed to be reformed.

The War on Drugs has made it legal for the government to sieze property with no recourse. The Patriot Act has made it legal for the government to do a lot of rather nasty things. Where's the outrage of republicans about these diminishing rights? Oh that's right, just try to paint people that are concerned as whack jobs with extremist labels. Those sort of diminished rights and over reaches of government power will never be applied to law abidding citizens, right?

I know that the majority of people who support gun rights arent whackos and they have valid concerns. I know that there are whackos who want to take all guns away. I'm with you on that.

KCTitus
11-04-2004, 12:44 PM
The War on Drugs has made it legal for the government to sieze property with no recourse. The Patriot Act has made it legal for the government to do a lot of rather nasty things. Where's the outrage of republicans about these diminishing rights? Oh that's right, just try to paint people that are concerned as whack jobs with extremist labels. Those sort of diminished rights and over reaches of government power will never be applied to law abidding citizens, right?

I thought the courts had reversed those actions with regard to drug property seizures...the system in action as far as Im concerned since I didnt think that was altogether right in some cases.

Ive never had anyone explain how I am impacted by the Patriot Act. I would like to be outraged, Ive just never been convinced that I should be.

KC Jones
11-04-2004, 12:49 PM
I thought the courts had reversed those actions with regard to drug property seizures...the system in action as far as Im concerned since I didnt think that was altogether right in some cases.

Ive never had anyone explain how I am impacted by the Patriot Act. I would like to be outraged, Ive just never been convinced that I should be.

I've got to get some work done - I've been on here way too much this week.

Tonight I'll try to post some links and some information about the Patriot Act and how portions of it are being abused outside the context of fighting terrorists.

KCTitus
11-04-2004, 12:50 PM
I've got to get some work done - I've been on here way too much this week.

Tonight I'll try to post some links and some information about the Patriot Act and how portions of it are being abused outside the context of fighting terrorists.

I'll try to look up the thread later tomorrow...

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 01:28 PM
Ooohhh, you are so close, yet so far......

As to the specific items that would be taxed, I have no idea, that can be worked out any number of ways.

What I am foggy on is if you are saying that only the poor should not be taxed for food and the like. If so, I must vehemently disagree. Any item that is taxed is to be done so for all people, and at the same rate (sticking to the flat tax principle here).

One of the problems we have today is that not everyone shares in the tax burden, which puts more pressure on those who do. Everyone needs to pull their own weight. And this is why a consumption tax will be better than the income tax, people will have all of their income up front and be able allocate the funds as need be, thus making it easier for the poor to pay taxes as they have the choice on which items/services they choose to pay taxes on.

Specifics would require debate, compromise, and consensus.

"Food and the like" would be tax exempt for everyone--eating out and things like patte', caviar, and other "luxury" items could be taxed as far as I'm concerned--but it's negotiable.

Consumption tax would be fine; I would hope we could agree on a lower "rate" or a "partial rebate" for poor families---say less than $15 for a family of four. Maybe even progressive partial rebates up to $30,000 per year. Not set in stone, but a starting point for the discussion....

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 01:37 PM
Specifics would require debate, compromise, and consensus.

"Food and the like" would be tax exempt for everyone--eating out and things like patte', caviar, and other "luxury" items could be taxed as far as I'm concerned--but it's negotiable.

Consumption tax would be fine; I would hope we could agree on a lower "rate" or a "partial rebate" for poor families---say less than $15 for a family of four. Maybe even progressive partial rebates up to $30,000 per year. Not set in stone, but a starting point for the discussion....


You were doing so good right up to that point, and then you kept typing insteading of just putting a period.

NO special treatment because of the class one happens to be in. This is non-negotiable to me. Everyone pays the same (low) rate. The reason I would favor a flat tax is because it treats the poor and rich equally. And equallity is what this country is supposed to be about, right? Infact, isn't that what the Democratic party says it is for? Unless you happen to be rich, then you are different and get treated as such.......

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 01:48 PM
You were doing so good right up to that point, and then you kept typing insteading of just putting a period.

NO special treatment because of the class one happens to be in. This is non-negotiable to me. Everyone pays the same (low) rate. The reason I would favor a flat tax is because it treats the poor and rich equally. And equallity is what this country is supposed to be about, right? Infact, isn't that what the Democratic party says it is for? Unless you happen to be rich, then you are different and get treated as such.......

I understand where you are coming from, and philosophically I'm okay with it. I guess it's simply a benevolence/charity/compassion sort of thing for me. I don't believe in progressive taxation; but I am troubled by regressive taxes that are disproportionately administered to the poor. JMHO, subject to negotiation and compromise.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 01:53 PM
I understand where you are coming from, and philosophically I'm okay with it. I guess it's simply a benevolence/charity/compassion sort of thing for me. I don't believe in progressive taxation really; but I am trouble by regressive taxes that are disproportionately administered to the poor. JMHO, subject to negotiation and compromise.


I believe in benevolence, charity, and compassion, I also believe that one must work hard to attain what you want in life. Sooner or later you are bound to catch a break along the way (often times created by your own hard work); I see no reason to discriminate against those who have already attained success in life.

EVERYONE pays their fair share, not just the successful.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 01:56 PM
I believe in benevolence, charity, and compassion, I also believe that one must work hard to attain what you want in life. Sooner or later you are bound to catch a break along the way (often times created by your own hard work); I see no reason to discriminate against those who have already attained success in life.

EVERYONE pays their fair share, not just the successful.

Fair share okay, fine; honestly, I agree.

Basic subsistence for people who have next to nothing though? Should those items be taxed at a rate comparable to the luxury and discretionary items of the "rest of society?" :hmmm:

My conscience says, "not really." :shrug:

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 02:00 PM
Fair share okay, fine; honestly, I agree.

Basic subsistence for people who have next to nothing though? Should those items be taxed at a rate comparable to the luxury and discretionary items of the "rest of society?" :hmmm:

My conscience says, "not really." :shrug:


You are discussing which items are to be taxed, that is negotiable. All I am saying is that whatever is taxed is done so for all classes, and at the same (low) rate.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 02:03 PM
You are discussing which items are to be taxed, that is negotiable. All I am saying is that whatever is taxed is done so for all classes, and at the same (low) rate.

Then we agree, more or less.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 02:07 PM
Then we agree, more or less.


More or less. Later on we can get together and hammer out the details to submit to our respective congressmen.

I want this change, bad.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 02:37 PM
More or less. Later on we can get together and hammer out the details to submit to our respective congressmen.

I want this change, bad.

Unfortunately I think the biggest opposition to such a change would come from corporate and wealthy interests that benefit from breaks in the current tax code....which would make it a very formidable task.

Logical
11-04-2004, 03:03 PM
People who are truly poor, in spending money on the necessities of life....food, basic clothing, utilities and such.....COULD be (should be?) sparred the full burden of taxation for such things. It's why many states don't tax food or clothing.

I'm not saying they shouldn't pay anything, because they should. But those spending money on luxury items, expensive discretionary items, and anything ABOVE basic subsistence should shoulder a 'full tax.' I simply think that is a courtesy we, as a society can afford.

Why tax anyone for food? Make it up when they purchase a vehicle, or shop at a "boutique?" Poor folks would still pay a "tax" on their Chevy or their Walmart clothing purchase, but rich folks buying a Lexxus and Ralphe Lauren fashions would be paying more....to me that's "fair," that's reasonable.

I see no reason for that to be true. They get their government subsidies. But if they buy a consumable they should be taxed just like everyone else, no exceptions.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 04:20 PM
Unfortunately I think the biggest opposition to such a change would come from corporate and wealthy interests that benefit from breaks in the current tax code....which would make it a very formidable task.


I disagree, the biggest opposition will come from the government itself.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 05:24 PM
I see no reason for that to be true. They get their government subsidies. But if they buy a consumable they should be taxed just like everyone else, no exceptions.

To each his own; I consider this reasonable philanthropy, but some will disagree. :thumb:

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 05:24 PM
I disagree, the biggest opposition will come from the government itself.

They'd be a close second in my view. :)

tk13
11-04-2004, 05:30 PM
I think the dems would be better served if a guy like Evan Bayh was the nominee
Woo... that's what I was going to say. I'd voted for him over Kerry/Bush in 0.005 seconds... that'd be the only way Indiana would turn into a blue state. Unfortunately I don't think he'll make a run in '08... I'm not quite sure how everybody percieves him but I imagine most Democrats would find him too conservative and I'd guess the Republicans would do a good job of trying to make him seem too liberal....

MadProphetMargin
11-04-2004, 05:45 PM
ballot box
Democratic Values
How to start winning the red states.




So, the gist of the article is that we can beat the republicans if we BECOME the republicans?

Why the hell would we do that? If I wanted the republican agenda, I'd vote republican.

MadProphetMargin
11-04-2004, 05:46 PM
You were doing so good right up to that point, and then you kept typing insteading of just putting a period.

NO special treatment because of the class one happens to be in. This is non-negotiable to me. Everyone pays the same (low) rate. The reason I would favor a flat tax is because it treats the poor and rich equally. And equallity is what this country is supposed to be about, right? Infact, isn't that what the Democratic party says it is for? Unless you happen to be rich, then you are different and get treated as such.......

But just to run the military alone, you'd bankrupt the working class.

You think someone making 20k/yr can afford to pay 15-20% (that's what it would take)?

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 05:52 PM
They'd be a close second in my view. :)


They have more to lose.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 05:59 PM
But just to run the military alone, you'd bankrupt the working class.

You think someone making 20k/yr can afford to pay 15-20% (that's what it would take)?


Are you talking 15-20% of their total income over the course of the year? Or 15-20% per purchase?


I am talking about a consumption tax, you get to decide how much you pay in taxes by deciding what you purchase. And the successful will still end up footing most of the bill in this system (I know that is important to the left). But everyone who benifits from living in this country, anyone who benifits from the roads, police, military protection, ect should pay taxes. Once they do I think you will see a dramatic change in the mentality of the nation, one for the better.

MadProphetMargin
11-04-2004, 06:02 PM
Are you talking 15-20% of their total income over the course of the year? Or 15-20% per purchase?


I am talking about a consumption tax, you get to decide how much you pay in taxes by deciding what you purchase. And the successful will still end up footing most of the bill in this system (I know that is important to the left). But everyone who benifits from living in this country, anyone who benifits from the roads, police, military protection, ect should pay taxes. Once they do I think you will see a dramatic change in the mentality of the nation, one for the better.

Shit. My bad. I was thinking flat tax.

MPM,
Isn't on the ball, today.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 06:12 PM
Shit. My bad. I was thinking flat tax.

MPM,
Isn't on the ball, today.



Still sufferring from the hangover caused by Tuesday night? :D

MadProphetMargin
11-04-2004, 06:25 PM
Still sufferring from the hangover caused by Tuesday night? :D

If you'll remember, I was one of the people who refused to rant on about how Kerry was going to win.

My odds were 5-4 Bush, which is close enough to how it ran.

It isn't the RESULT of the election that bothers me, but rather the defining issue that caused that result.

Raiderhader
11-04-2004, 06:36 PM
If you'll remember, I was one of the people who refused to rant on about how Kerry was going to win.

My odds were 5-4 Bush, which is close enough to how it ran.

It isn't the RESULT of the election that bothers me, but rather the defining issue that caused that result.


I was just being a smart ass.

Mr. Kotter
11-04-2004, 08:49 PM
So, the gist of the article is that we can beat the republicans if we BECOME the republicans?

Why the hell would we do that? If I wanted the republican agenda, I'd vote republican.

I read it differently than that, but whatever. :shrug: