Trickle Economics

Posted in 2008 Election, Politics on November 2nd, 2008

Trickle-down economics” and “trickle-down theory” are terms of political rhetoric that refer to the policy of providing tax cuts or other benefits to businesses and rich individuals, in the belief that this will indirectly benefit the broad population. Strangely it is believed that Will Rogers of western movie fame first coined the phrase during the Great Depression.

Money was all appropriated for the top in hopes that it would trickle down to the needy

— Will Rogers

First there was President Ronald Reagan with his supply-side economic which were labeled Reaganomics. This was the first example of the now classic, post-Keynesian Trickle-Down Economics.

President Ronald Reagan was a strong proponent of Trickle-Down economics, and it was he who brought the term to the notice of the general population.

He believed that reducing taxes on capital gains, corporate income, and higher individual incomes, along with the reduction or elimination of various excise taxes would increase gross domestic product (GD) and that this would benefit the poor.

Despite the clear economics benefits of Reagan’s Trickle-Down Economics, it is generally considered to have been a failed experiment in in macro-economics. While median family income grew and interest rates, inflation, and unemployment fell faster under Reagan than they did immediately before or after his presidency, the income gap between the wealthy and the poor grew and the perceived benefits to the lower income quintiles was far less than expected.

President Reagan forgot to take greed into account.

The wealthy used their new tax breaks and deregulation to increase their wealth greatly, but only caused a tiny fraction of that increase in wealth to trickle down to the average American family. Greed won out.

~*~

Senator Barack ObamaNow we presidential hopeful, Sen. Barack Obama, who wants to increase income taxes on capital gains, corporate income, and higher individual incomes, along with increasing the payroll taxes on both employers and employees in the upper economic quintiles.

He believes this is necessary to provide immediate relief to the poor and middle-class.

Some might choose to describe this as Trickle-Up Economics, others would choose to describe this as Socialism – an intermediate step between Capitalism and Communism. In point of fact – and without the weighted rhetoric of politics – it is Demand-Side Economics as espoused by 20th-century British economist John Maynard Keynes. Sen. Obama’s economic plan is a return to the economic theories of Pres. Jimmy Carter’s administration.

Sen. Obama’s Trickle-Up Economics or Demand-Side Economics is based on the theory that by directly increasing the capital available to the lower income quintiles greater demand will be generated for goods and services across all sectors of the economy. This is turn would generate greater supply and increase gross domestic product (GD) and that this in turn would benefit the poor even more.

Sen. Obama is forgetting to to take greed into account.

The wealthy will do what they can to protect their wealth. Increasing their costs through taxation will lead them to take measures to offset the depredations of their wealth though a variety of methods. None of those methods will benefit America’s poor or middle-class.

  1. Corporations will likely reduce or adjust domestic workforces by either increased automation or adjustments in full-time to part-time employee number
  2. Corporations will likely move as much of their business and production facilities overseas as they can manage. In this world of Globalism a dramatic increase in domestic production costs will inevitably lead to an equally dramatic increase in “off shoring” of jobs and production.
  3. Available capital in the lending markets will likely be reduced since increased income and capital gains taxes will make such business models less lucrative
  4. General investments – including 401Ks and pension funds – will taper down do to the increased capital gains taxes. Fund administrators would have a much harder time maximizing the growth of such investment portfolios in the wake of greater taxation.
  5. Corporations will likely increase the basic costs of most goods and services, both to offset their increased tax burdens and to take full advantage of the greater buying power of the poor and middle-class. Inflation never benefits the poor.

Once again, as it did under Pres. Reagan, greed will have one out.

Reagan was an idealist and Obama is an idealist. Both men failed to fully take into account the level of greed in people when they put together their economic policies. The difference between the two lies in the effects of their disparate plans.

Lowering The Bar

Posted in 2008 Election on October 31st, 2008

Sen. Barack Obama preaches “Hope” and “Change” to the multitudes. He stands as a savior of the unwashed masses and offers gifts and glory to them – if only they will grant him their votes. There is no denying that Sen. Obama is a brilliant orator and has the capability of capturing the dreams of many in the US – but what will he deliver on those promises?

From The Times of London (Times Online):

Barack Obamas senior advisers have drawn up plans to lower expectations for his presidency if he wins next weeks election, amid concerns that many of his euphoric supporters are harbouring unrealistic hopes of what he can achieve.

The sudden financial crisis and the prospect of a deep and painful recession have increased the urgency inside the Obama team to bring people down to earth, after a campaign in which his soaring rhetoric and promises of hope and change are now confronted with the reality of a stricken economy.

One senior adviser told The Times that the first few weeks of the transition, immediately after the election, were critical, so theres not a vast mood swing from exhilaration and euphoria to despair.

The aide said that Mr Obama himself was the first to realise that expectations risked being inflated.

Read the full Times Online Article

Sen. Obama has sown the wind with his populist approach and his inspiring but insubstantial political platform. Now it seems that he and his advisers are worried that he will reap the whirlwind of dashed hopes, despair, and the rage that will ensue from false hopes and broken promises.

H/T to The Reluctant Optimist

And Ashley Makes Three

Posted in Politics, Society on October 27th, 2008

We in America seem to have a very sad tradition. It is the tradition of falsely claiming to have been attacked for reasons based on Race, Religion, or Politics. We had Tawana Brawley, and then Safia Jilani. Now Ashley Todd makes three. Here are three young women who preyed upon longstanding fears and expectations of wrongdoing in order to either gain attention or to further their particular agendas:

Tawana Brawley claimed that six White law enforcement officers abducted and raped her, scrawled racial insults on her body, and smeared her with feces .

Those claims were declared a hoax by a grand jury.

 

Muslim student activist, Safia Jilani claimed that she was attacked in the bathroom at the Southwestern suburban college. The incident was declared a hate crime when local police found threatening and Islamaphobic graffiti written on the bathrooms mirrors and walls.

Local police later announced that an investigation determined the assault never occurred at all. It was a hoax.

 

Ashley Todd claimed that she was attacked by a Black man who robbed her and then – upon seeing her McCain-Palin bumpersticker – carved a “B” into her face while berating her.

She later admitted that this a hoax.

 

There have of course been others who have perpetrated such hoaxes. Three three are just ones who have in relatively recent times committed such atrocities and gained national media attention.

Show Some Respect

Posted in 2008 Election, Ethics & Morality on October 20th, 2008

To all my Conservative readers,

Barack Obama will suspend campaigning for a day and a half so that he can fly to Hawaii to be at the side of his gravely ill grandmother, a campaign aide said late Monday.

Madelyn Dunham, 86, was released from the hospital at the end of last week and returned to her home in Honolulu with a health condition the aide described only as “very serious.”

Please show some respect for his family as we would hope others would show to ours. Back off a bit unless his surrogates take the fight to us in his absence.

We are better than those who would use something like this against a candidate.

If you worship a God or Goddess or both, please add your prayers for Obama’s grandmother’s recovery or easy passing.

Thank you,

jonolan

P.S.: Thank you to Chamay0 for posting the notice, though she has less than favorable expectations from McCain and we Conservatives.

Wealth Spread

Posted in 2008 Election, Humor on October 19th, 2008

Coming soon to a collective food distribution center near you – unless we’re all very careful – Chef Obama’s new Wealth Spread.

Courtesy of The People’s Cube

I’m just guessing, but I don’t think that Joe The Plumber would ever put this on his toast. Then again, he and the rest of us might not be given a choice in the matter.