Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Last Debate

Just a few thoughts on the (thank God) last debate.

If Joe the plumber is going to give up on his dream of owning his own company because he doesn’t want to have to “pay higher taxes” on the $250,000 profit that the company he plans to buy makes, then there is something seriously wrong with his priorities. Many years ago, when I was injured and out of work for a while, a group of guys were discussing how much they hated paying income taxes. I embarrassed them by observing that I would be delighted to pay income tax, because it would mean that I had income to pay tax on.

This focus on lowering taxes is just plain sick. Do you think that a standing Army to “keep us free,” all of these schools, and roads and bridges and federal programs that we demand are free? They are paid for with taxes, or should be.

McCain is back to saying he can balance the budget in four years. Insane. He has been back and forth on this so many times in the past year it is creating whiplash. He cannot do it without shutting the government down in its entirety.

Neither of them has the courage to say that the deficit as a percentage of overall economy is nowhere the highest it’s ever been, nor that in a severe recession deficit spending is a necessary, even worthwhile thing to do.

Schieffer was a jerk with the way he phrased the question about the “ugly campaign” issue, trying to equate the issue between the candidates. Obama’s attacks have been on McCain’s policies and his present actions. McCain’s attacks have been about actions of 40 years ago, and have been attacks on character and patriotism. The difference is clear cut.

McCain immediately played the victim card, bringing up the remarks of John Lewis. What utter gall and bullshit. I’m delighted that Obama did not dignify that with a response. Obama gave McCain several chances to drop this ugly non-issue, but McCain continued to pound this dead horse deeper into the ground. Not one person outside of McCain’s base, who are all going to vote for him anyway, care one iota about this “issue.”

ACORN threatens to “destroy the fabric of democracy” does it? The real threat is McCain and his cronies using ACORN’s victimization by its employees as a lever to disenfranchise voters. ACORN paid people to register voters, paying them on the basis of number registered. As was inevitable, no few employees faked forms to get money without doing the work, a fact that ACORN duly noted when turning in the forms as required by law. There is no threat to democracy here. “Micky Mouse” is not going to turn up and try to vote illegally. The bogus registrations are for people who do not exist.

McCain’s party is using this “threat to the fabric of democracy” to challenge the registration of legitimate voters. I have, for instance, two middle names. Some databases cannot accommodate that, so in some places I am listed with one middle name and in others with two. On the voter rolls I am listed with two, so if McCain’s party can find a database where I am listed with one middle name they can challenge my registration and prevent me from voting for Barack Obama. (oops)

Who is the real "threat to the fabric of democracy” here?

McCain is still using the excuse that it is slandering Obama because Obama would not join him in the ten town hall meetings “as Kennedy and Goldwater agreed to do before that tragic event in Dallas.” Goldwater only said that it was an interesting idea, he never agreed to it. And McCain’s dishonorable conduct is his own responsibility, not the result of Obama’s decisions.

I’m not going to get into the health care plans. The both stink, but Obama’s stinks quite a lot less than McCain’s does. McCain accused Obama of favoring single payer health care. I only wish he did. Most of America wishes he did.

McCain became utterly incoherent on abortion. He will appoint to SCOTUS based only on qualification, with no litmus test. No litmus test is acceptable, but one of the qualifications is that the applicant favor overturning Roe v. Wade. So the opinion on Roe v. Wade is a qualification not a litmus test. The way McCain gets around problems is not by solving them, it’s by simply redefining terms.

And the sneering “fingerquoted” thing about the health of the woman when talking about the “pro-abortion” position. Pro-abortion? Fortunately, my wife was not in the room at the time, or I would have been dodging flying objects. They would not have been aimed at me, understand, but she is not that good of a shot.

McCain described the school voucher program in Washington. I think this guy is mental, because he favors this program and he described exactly why it is about as thoroughly un-American as it can possibly be. “…there's a certain number, I think it's a thousand and some and some 9,000 parents asked to be eligible for that.” So, 8000 parents were left to send their kids to crumbling, underfunded schools that you are ignoring.

The America that I live in says that all people are created equal, which implies that federal programs must treat all people equally. But you want to provide money to send 1000 kids to private schools and send another 8000 to public schools for which you will provide no funding whatever. What universe do you live in?

McCain wants to take soldiers from the battlefield and send them to our schools as teachers without any training or testing. Do they get to take a shower first, to wash the blood and battle dust off? What is that plan?

He returned to autism in the education portion. He never connected his focus on autism to Sarah Palin’s youngest child directly, but he did make that connection earlier in an indirect manner. Does he think the baby has autism? If he’s talking about autism and not about her baby, he should make that clear, because much of America seems to think that he thinks he’s talking about Palin’s baby.

And again the pundits are saying that McCain “won on points” whatever that means, and the polls are saying that Obama won by very large margins. Pat Buchanan continues to disagree with the polls, insisting that McCain won on points, on style, and that he convinced millions of voters. Um, Pat, the voters who he convinced were already voting for him. They were in bars all over the country chanting “Sarah, Sarah.”


  1. Anonymous10:42 PM

    neither candidate should even consider lowering taxes, given waht needs to be paid for (now and in the future). A political ploy, that's all I've ever considered it.

    I don;t think anyone can balance the budget without massive tax increases or massive spending cuts (or both). You also need transparency and honesty in accounting, and no subterfuges, like using the SS surplus for funding other things and putting IOUs in their place.

    Everyone wants lower taxes and higher entitlements /services... Sorry, can't have both. Somebody has to pay... pay now or pay later.

    I thought McBlame's blather about Lewis, Ayers, ACORN was all political BS, mis/dis-information, re-direction, smoke screen, whatever you want call it.

    I don't believe either one has a realistic solution for health care. They are talking about health insurance, which is not the same thing. I've read analysis which says McCains approach is not so bad. I think single payer is the ultimate end, but there a re a lot of obstacles in the way, not the least of which is doctors, lawyers, and indian chiefs. ok, I'm kidding about the last one, but still.. ther are many angles to this mess and a lot of history that led up to today, and the solutions are not going to be easy, quick or on one huge leap forward.

    I don;t think any judge worth his/her salt should predict in advance how they would rule on any case... if they did, I think that would be a disqualification. I think it's plain how both McCain and Obama feel about abortion, so they really don;t need to harp on that. What MCain said about not having a litmus test and then saying what qualifications he wants.. like calling water dihydrogen monoxide. Sheesh.. gimmee a break, who is he fooling? Well, yeah I know, some people would be.

    Was that thing on vouchers a complete smoke screen or what? I totally missed the point of what was trying to be said there. Was it in respose to a question? or another obfustication? or a question re-direct? I'm still shaking my head.

    Where did the soldiers cum-teachers come from? I must have missed that part.

    Sarah Palin's child has Down syndrom, not autism. And what has that got to do with the question that was asked?

    I don;t think that McCain "won".. he did not hurt Obama, Obama did not make any errors, so in that sense, McCain "lost". I don;t know that this will change any minds or not. McCain handled himself better than before perhaps, despite the stupidity & inanity of the points he made, but none of that makes me think he's my man.

    Obama's not perfect either. I have disagreements with some of his opinions, ideas and philosophies. I like Jayhawk's comment a while back, he'll hold his nose and vote for Obama. I know that Obama will carry California by a good margin, so it doean't really matter if I vote for either one. I will vote for someone, I always do.

  2. Agreed, health insurance and health care are NOT the same. And, no one mentions or even seems to know that much of what is called health "insurance" really is not, it is self funded by employers, only administered by the insurance companies, and thus is not subject to state insurance regulations, and unless they draft the legislation carefully, would not be regulated by either plan. I used to work for one of those "insurance" companies (which, in fairness, have some plans where the company actually is "at risk"). Note the "used to".