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Why the American Public Rejects the Bush Economic "Plan" (Part I)
AmericanEconomicAlert.org ^ | Wednesday, February 15, 2006 | William R. Hawkins

Posted on 02/16/2006 11:38:31 AM PST by Willie Green

For education and discussion only. Not for commercial use.

There was bad news for the White House and the Republican Party in the Associated Press-Ipsos poll on public attitudes conducted Feb. 6-8. By a 61-35 percent margin, respondents said that the country was on the "wrong track," and by 57-40 percent disapproved of the way President George W. Bush is running the country. Those surveyed also disapproved by a margin of 61-35 of how the Republican-controlled Congress was handling its duties, with a plurality of 47 percent saying things would be better if the Democrats were in charge. With Congressional elections only nine months away, the public could make that change if their dim view of the GOP persists.

Perhaps most perplexing to Republican leaders is that by 58-40 percent, those polled disapproved of how the Bush administration is handling the economy. A Gallup Poll conducted during this same time period also found a 56-40 percent disapproval score for economic policy.

The White House trumpets low unemployment (4.7 percent), rising real per capita after-tax income (up 7.9 percent since January 2001), booming housing construction, and low inflation. According to the 2006 Economic Report of the President, released Feb. 13, the future never looked brighter. How can people not be happy? Perhaps because the selective reciting of statistics in Washington does not pay the bills in Peoria.

Part of the problem with Bush administration stats is that they measure from the bottom of the 2001 recession rather than from the state of the economy before the recession. The recovery from the recession has actually been very slow, even though the recession was shallow. This is because the recession has masked some very negative structural changes in the economy which counter-cyclical policy – tax cuts, increases in government spending, and money creation by the Federal Reserve – is not designed to remedy.

Only 2,093,000 total jobs were added over the five years (2000-2004), a gain of only 1.58%, the weakest five-year increase on record. Only half of these net jobs were in the private sector, that part of the economy supposedly subject to the most stimulus in the Bush program (tax cuts and low interest rates). The other half came from increased government employment, not exactly where a conservative Republican administration would want it. Though the Labor Department hailed the creation of 193,000 payroll jobs in January, this was 40,000 less than most private sector economists had predicted and an indication that the economy is slowing.

Manufacturing has lost 2.9 million jobs, with losses slightly worse in durable than non-durable goods. There have been job losses in every major industry. A housing boom should boost durable goods production, except that too many of these items are now imported from overseas. And much of the construction work is done by illegal immigrants, who will work for much less than skilled American craftsmen.

There has also been a lost of 209,000 private-sector white-collar supervisory positions in line with the loss of blue collar workers. These well-paying jobs have been replaced by lower-paying service sector jobs in health care, social work, education, and restaurants. Unemployment is low because people have to work to eat, so they take whatever jobs are available. Even so, since Labor Dept. stats do not count people who have been out of work for more than six months, the kind of unemployment that affects how people and families actually live is still high. The Labor Department reports there are NOW over 5 million of these "discouraged workers" no longer counted as being in the labor force, but who still want a job. The editors of The Economist magazine of London, whose views on policy do not differ fundamentally from Bush's, have calculated that real unemployment in the United States is closer to 8 percent. Adults are not participating in the job market at 2000 levels (67.4 percent then versus 65.5 percent now), and total hours worked in 2005 were still less than in 2000. Additionally, the stagnation of wage and salary levels for most Americans does not indicate a tight labor market.

Another disturbing fact, which undoubtedly underlies the negative Bush poll numbers, is that households drew down their net savings last year. This has not happened since the Depression year of 1933 and indicates that the American people are trying to maintain their living standards without adequate income. The Bush approach of trying to boost "after tax income" by cutting taxes, rather than raising base income by creating better jobs, is a losing proposition.

In presenting the FY 2007 Budget to the Senate Finance Committee Feb. 7, Treasury Secretary John Snow argued for making the tax cuts enacted during President Bush's first term permanent, despite an estimated budget deficit for 2007 of $354.2 billion. Though he claimed that the economic recovery is strong and deep, he still said, "Tax increases carry an enormous risk of economic damage." This statement implies that the economy is not on a self-sustaining upward course, but is still dependent on heavy fiscal stimulus from the government.

Back when I was teaching economics at the University of Tennessee, the textbook used for the introductory sequence was the top-selling work of Campbell R. McConnell. McConnell was a follower of Abba Lerner, who had taken the Depression era doctrines of John Maynard Keynes to the extreme. Whereas Keynes believed in running deficits during a downturn to stimulate the economy, he also favored paying down debts when times were good, thus balancing accounts over the course of the business cycle. Lerner and McConnell believed deficits should be run all the time, without concern for any mounting debts. Indeed, they feared the accumulation of personal savings. They called their theory "functional finance," the function being to continually stimulate an economy they did not believe could ever run reliably on its own.

This outlook was popular among liberal-left academics (like those who ran my department and made the textbook decisions) because it fit their notion that capitalism was an inherently flawed system whose internal contradictions required government management to overcome. Their view now seems to have been adopted by the Bush administration.

Putative conservatives cannot acknowledge the liberal lineage of their ideas, so they invented the new school of "supply side" economics. But the only real difference is that while liberals favor creating deficits by boosting government spending on programs for their constituents, supply-siders want to create deficits by cutting taxes for their constituents. But it is the same political game – one based on a dismal view of the underlying economy.

Snow fell back on supply-side rhetoric, claiming "lower tax rates are good for the economy and a growing economy is good for Treasury receipts. Indeed, our rate of economic growth led to record levels of Treasury receipts in 2005." But a closer look at the composition of tax receipts disproves his claim. According to the administration's Office of Management and Budget, individual income tax receipts for 2005 were $77.3 billion less than in 2000. The increase in overall tax receipts from individuals came mainly from social security taxes, which were not cut. These fall mainly on middle and working class families, whereas income tax cuts help those in the upper income levels. Individual income tax collection is not expected to reach the 2000 level again until 2007.

Corporation income tax receipts have gone up, indicating where in the economy the real money is being made. Indeed, the Bush administration seems to think mainly in terms of how the corporate sector is doing. The new Economic Report, for example, downplays the negative household savings rate, arguing, "Personal saving is only one part of national saving. The personal saving rate does not include corporate saving in the form of retained earnings; but corporate saving adds to the wealth of corporate shareholders and supplies funds for investment."

Snow himself acknowledged the flaw in his supply-side reasoning (inadvertently) when he told Senators, "In 2011 we will again reach, as a percentage of GDP, the levels we've seen over the average of the last 40 years." Thus, it will not be until three years after Bush leaves office that fiscal behavior will get back to normal. And even then, Snow defines downward what is considered normal.

OMB projections for 2011 have tax receipts at 17.9 percent of GDP. Forty years ago was 1966. The average share of GDP collected in Federal taxes from 1966 to 2001 – the 36 years before the Bush tax cuts went into effect – was 18.3 percent. Almost all the cases where the tax share was significantly lower were during recessions, when tax receipts declined due to reduced economic activity and high unemployment. One suspects that Snow wanted to go back 40 years so as to be able to average in the period of "malaise" during 1973-1979, when the tax ratio averaged 17.9 percent. Tax receipts naturally jump when times are good and people are making money. The tax share of GDP averaged 18.5 percent during the vibrant 20 years from Presidents Reagan to Clinton. But during the 2002-2005 period, tax receipts as a share of GDP have averaged only 17.1 percent. This fact reflects the extreme nature of the Bush tax cuts, and the weakening tax base.

Government spending during this period has not been historically high as a percentage of GDP despite the Iraq and Afghan wars. Indeed, it has run slightly less than the average of the 1990s – 19.6 percent versus 20.7 percent during 1990-2000. What has caused the budget deficits has been the drop in tax revenues. Thus, in the Bush plan, budget deficits will continue out to 2011, and beyond. This is another source of dissavings in the economy, as budget deficits destroy capital, decrease investment, and prevent Americans from reaching their full potential as producers of wealth. The winners are those rival economies overseas where people do save, invest, and produce to wipe out American industries in cutthroat competition.

(Part II will follow next week.)


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial; Government
KEYWORDS: 109th; 2006agenda; assclown; balancedbudget; budgetdeficit; corporatism; deficitspending; globalism; nationaldebt; taxes; thebusheconomy; willielogic
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To: MNJohnnie
Willie, just screaming a lie over and over does NOT make it true.

I am a software engineer with over 30 years experience. I have kept current in software and electrical engineering. I am currently paid at 75% of what I was merely three years ago. My family is drawing from savings every month just to live. Don't tell either Willie or myself that we don't know what this is all about. The misguided economic policies of this administration are indeed impacting the earning capabilities of well educated people.

Don't feed me that line about finding a job that makes better use of my skills. I am an engineer with science, math, and electronics training and experience. These jobs are just plain disappearing.

I am not a banker or a real estate agent in my brain. There are NO appropriate uses of my training, skills, and cranial abilities except engineering. To suggest that we retrain is like telling Einstein that he should give up math and sell shoes.

51 posted on 02/16/2006 2:06:12 PM PST by GingisK
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To: kidd
Things seem to be looking up.

Unless, of course, you are an engineer.

52 posted on 02/16/2006 2:07:50 PM PST by GingisK
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To: Mase
So the lender gets to keep any increase in the value of the property? Can the people who pay the mortgage borrow against the equity? I think that would be a difficult thing to do if you didn't own the home.

Can you knock down a wall and add rooms without the bank's or the town's permission? Could you make the home smaller if you thought the heating bills were too high?

The average American household has 57% equity in their home. Are you saying that this wealth doesn't belong to them?

Have a major sickness in the family that causes the loss of the house due to forclosure. See what amount of that equity you get.

53 posted on 02/16/2006 2:08:33 PM PST by raybbr (ANWR is a barren, frozen wasteland - like the mind of a democrat!)
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To: nopardons; Toddsterpatriot

Straight out of the Kerry/Edwards talking points.


54 posted on 02/16/2006 2:09:59 PM PST by Petronski (I love Cyborg!)
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To: Willie Green
But yes, I'd say that, overall, this article compliments and is compatible with PJB's positions.

So then it's crap. Gotcha.

55 posted on 02/16/2006 2:13:26 PM PST by Petronski (I love Cyborg!)
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To: Willie Green

oh no....

those bastards...

we're doomed...

OMG They killed kenny...

worst economy since hoover....

did I miss anything?


56 posted on 02/16/2006 2:15:06 PM PST by MikefromOhio (Brokeback Mountain: The ONLY western where the Cowboys GET IT IN THE END!!!)
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To: MikeinIraq
did I miss anything?

No, I think you pretty much covered it all,
so you can go back to watching Oprah. Thanks!

57 posted on 02/16/2006 2:24:24 PM PST by Willie Green (Go Pat Go!!!)
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To: Willie Green

Oprah's still on TV?

I had no idea....

dammit!!!

/sarcasm


58 posted on 02/16/2006 2:26:52 PM PST by MikefromOhio (Brokeback Mountain: The ONLY western where the Cowboys GET IT IN THE END!!!)
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To: Willie Green
Willie,....thank's for the link....for the book,...."The Death of the West"

One of these days I'll get around to reading it....

It 'is' on my list....

Thank's again.....

59 posted on 02/16/2006 2:30:18 PM PST by maestro
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To: Willie Green

Oh brother .. here they go with their fake polls again.

This is getting tiresome. We know they over-sample democrats so they can get the results they want.

For months they said Bush was at 39% - but Rasmussen had Bush at 48% - that's a big difference. The difference was oversampling of democrats. The democrats are liars.


60 posted on 02/16/2006 2:38:14 PM PST by CyberAnt (Democrat Leadership: No program - no ideas - no clue.)
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To: raybbr
Can you knock down a wall and add rooms without the bank's or the town's permission?

Yes and probably not.

Could you make the home smaller if you thought the heating bills were too high?

As long as I'm paying the mortgage I can do anything I want to the house provided I get the permits. But how many people would spend money to reduce the value of their home just to cut energy costs? That's a ridiculous scenario.

Have a major sickness in the family that causes the loss of the house due to forclosure. See what amount of that equity you get.

What percent of all homes in this country are foreclosed on every year for this reason? It still doesn't counter the fact that the average household owns 57% equity in their home and home ownership is at an all time high.

Are there tax advantages to living in a home as opposed to renting? Does the lender or the homeowner realize those benefits?

61 posted on 02/16/2006 2:42:07 PM PST by Mase
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To: oceanview
Okay. Fess up, oceanview. You were the prototype for this SNL invention, right?


62 posted on 02/16/2006 2:43:41 PM PST by arasina (So there.)
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To: maestro
You're welcome, maestro.
Another good one that you might enjoy is Alan Tonelson’s The Race to the Bottom.
63 posted on 02/16/2006 2:45:51 PM PST by Willie Green (Go Pat Go!!!)
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To: GingisK

BTTT! Excellent response to the "let them eat cake" crowd around here.


64 posted on 02/16/2006 3:11:52 PM PST by Borax Queen
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To: MNJohnnie; Alberta's Child; Willie Green

Obviously the American people see the reality of their lives more clearly than the globalism boosters on this board. Are you going to argue with the American people and tell them that they are stupid ?

Wouldn't a more intelligent response be to accept that once again, the man in the street sees things a lot more clearly than the so-called expert ?


65 posted on 02/16/2006 4:09:43 PM PST by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: Reagan Man

Reagan Man, this economy is great for people who live off of returns on investment and equity. Lousy for people who live off of paychecks.

"Personal saving is only one part of national saving. The personal saving rate does not include corporate saving in the form of retained earnings; but corporate saving adds to the wealth of corporate shareholders and supplies funds for investment."

So in other words we are seeing a massive transfer of wealth from people who live off of paychecks to people who benefit from cheap labor.


66 posted on 02/16/2006 4:11:35 PM PST by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: driftless
I can imagine that these are the kind of pessimists who if the Dow hits twelve thousand sometime this year, they'll say that it should have hit fifteen thousand. People "reject" the Bush economic policies because they're told it's awful by Big Media...who lie through their teeth.

If you live off of financial services and returns on investment then globalist cheap labor is just peachy. Problem is, most people live off of paychecks and cheap labor means lower paychecks for them. Your focus on the Dow is entirely on what benefits people who live off of returns on investment. People who live off of paychecks know that their circumstances are worse than 1998. Give the American people credit for having the common sense to know what their household economic circumstances are.

67 posted on 02/16/2006 4:16:02 PM PST by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: Mase
As long as I'm paying the mortgage I can do anything I want to the house provided I get the permits. But how many people would spend money to reduce the value of their home just to cut energy costs? That's a ridiculous scenario.

It may be but the fact that you have to get permission to do so means you don't "own" a home that's under a mortgaga.

It still doesn't counter the fact that the average household owns 57% equity in their home and home ownership is at an all time high.

You don't "own" the home outright if there is a mortgage. It doesn't matter who the profits a sale go to. You can't sell the house or do anything you want to it without the banks permission. I can do anything I want to my cars but not to my home. I must get approval either from the town or the bank. How can that be if I own it?

Equity is a meaningless number. It's a value that can't be realized without giving up the home. Even equity loans further consolidate the bank's ownwership of the property.

If the house burns to the ground or is destroyed by a tornado who gets the money? The bank does.

68 posted on 02/16/2006 4:21:19 PM PST by raybbr (ANWR is a barren, frozen wasteland - like the mind of a democrat!)
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To: driftless
...who if the Dow hits twelve thousand sometime this year...

Is that how you see America? As a Dow number?

69 posted on 02/16/2006 4:24:21 PM PST by raybbr (ANWR is a barren, frozen wasteland - like the mind of a democrat!)
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To: Sam the Sham
i>Wouldn't a more intelligent response be to accept that once again, the man in the street sees things a lot more clearly than the so-called expert?

Who is "the man in the street" here? William R. Hawkins? Pat Buchanan?

70 posted on 02/16/2006 4:54:17 PM PST by Alberta's Child (Leave a message with the rain . . . you can find me where the wind blows.)
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To: raybbr
It may be but the fact that you have to get permission to do so means you don't "own" a home that's under a mortgaga.

Do you mean that if I have a home without a mortgage I don't have to get permits from the city/county to remodel or expand? The bank doesn't care what I do to the house as long as I make my payments on time.

You can't sell the house or do anything you want to it without the banks permission. I can do anything I want to my cars but not to my home. I must get approval either from the town or the bank. How can that be if I own it?

I don't have any idea what you're talking about. I have to get the banks permission to sell my house? What? I've sold two houses in the last 10 years and I never asked for permission from my lender. Last year I gutted my current home, remodeled and even added additional square footage. My contractor had to pull all sorts of permits from the county. I never had to get permission of any kind from my mortgage company.

Equity is a meaningless number.

Is that why the fed counts it as an asset? If it's meaningless, why is it I can borrow money against it and use the interest paid as a tax deduction?

If the house burns to the ground or is destroyed by a tornado who gets the money?

I'm well insured so the bank would be paid the remaining amount outstanding and I'd get the rest. Other than my deductible, it wouldn't make a bit of difference, at this time, if it burned to the ground or was sold at market value.

71 posted on 02/16/2006 7:54:46 PM PST by Mase
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To: oceanview
almost every poll show american's opinion of the economy, is much lower then the president's personal approval rating, or his handling of war on terror issues, etc.

The average American is economically illiterate and has only his own personal state of wellbeing to use as a gauge. He couldn't tell you the President's "Plan" to save his life. If he's feeling good then the president is doing fine. If he feels strapped, then the president is failing, even if his strapped feeling is because of his own foolish financial mismanagement. He gets this concept of blame shifting from the MSM, who feed him what they want him to think.

72 posted on 02/16/2006 8:38:08 PM PST by hinckley buzzard
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To: Mase
Is that why the fed counts it as an asset? If it's meaningless, why is it I can borrow money against it and use the interest paid as a tax deduction?

Are you taxed on equity? No? That should tell you all you need to know about its value and worth to you as a tangible asset. The reason the fed uses it as an asset is because they want to boost their numbers to make the economy look better.

We disagree on home ownership under a mortgage. I do no own my home. Yes, there are advantages to having a mortgage but it is not outright ownership. Saying that more Americans "own" their homes than ever before is a numbers game.

73 posted on 02/17/2006 2:51:18 AM PST by raybbr (ANWR is a barren, frozen wasteland - like the mind of a democrat!)
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To: GingisK
Unless, of course, you are an engineer.

I am an engineer. I work for Westinghouse and we are severely short of engineers. We're looking to hire hundreds in the Pittsburgh and Hartford areas. Mechanical, Chemical and some Civil and Electrical. I get $1000 if a refer someone who is hired. If you're looking for work, let me know by private reply and I'll let you know what info needs to be sent and where.

74 posted on 02/17/2006 6:19:55 AM PST by kidd
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To: raybbr
Are you taxed on equity? No? That should tell you all you need to know about its value and worth to you as a tangible asset.

Our homes are regularly reassessed by the county taxing authority. When they do this, they value your home based on the new market value and your taxes are raised accordingly. Try again?

The reason the fed uses it as an asset is because they want to boost their numbers to make the economy look better.

I knew the tin foil would come out eventually. My house has doubled in value since I purchased it according to my Realtor. If I sell it tomorrow at twice the price I paid for it I get to keep the equity and the fed would have been correct. Right? The annual aggregate value of real estate has increased in this country every year since before WWII. I think it's pretty safe to say that the equity in a home is real and can be valued as an asset.

Yes, there are advantages to having a mortgage but it is not outright ownership.

Earlier, you said they did not own their home. Now you've had to qualify it by saying they do not own it outright. Nice back peddle.

Saying that more Americans "own" their homes than ever before is a numbers game

So those people would be better off renting? Admit it, those numbers show that the average American is doing damn well in this economy and that fact makes it much harder for you to sell your doom and gloom.

75 posted on 02/17/2006 6:40:57 AM PST by Mase
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To: oceanview

Nice try.

Net household worth is at an all time high. 15 trillion.

Manufacturing expands for the 32nd month in a row.

Consumer confidence is high.

And wage growth outpaces inflation.

Go sell your gloom somewhere else.


76 posted on 02/17/2006 7:05:38 AM PST by GeorgiaMike
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To: GeorgiaMike

you are wrong about wage growth. take out government workers, remove wage gains of those making $250K+, private sector middle class workers are falling behind. and pension snd medical are being cut too. and offshoring proceeds unabated.

the polls on the economy are what they are.


77 posted on 02/17/2006 9:35:19 AM PST by oceanview
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To: Hardastarboard

Sorry! I meant to turn off the sarcasm tag. < /sarcasm>


78 posted on 02/17/2006 9:54:37 AM PST by ConservativeBamaFan
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To: Willie Green
Why the American Public Rejects the Bush Economic "Plan" (Part I)

Come on, WG - you know the American Public isn't literate enough to know what an economic plan IS, let alone "reject" it.

They're getting enough ejicaishun in the skools to feel like they shud conserve nacheral reesorses and pertekt Bambi & Thumper, but they'll let the other guy do that - maybe those smart men in charge of the government will take care of it for them.

79 posted on 02/17/2006 10:59:32 AM PST by an amused spectator (Bush Runner! The Donkey is after you! Bush Runner! When he catches you, you're through!)
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To: an amused spectator; Sam the Sham
Come on, WG - you know the American Public isn't literate enough to know what an economic plan IS, let alone "reject" it.

Well, as Sam said back in reply #65:

Obviously the American people see the reality of their lives more clearly than the globalism boosters on this board. Are you going to argue with the American people and tell them that they are stupid ?
People vote their pocketbooks.
And if Dubya's economic media hype doesn't coincide with their perception of reality, his credibility will continue to suffer.
80 posted on 02/17/2006 11:22:06 AM PST by Willie Green (Go Pat Go!!!)
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To: Willie Green
they always chant the same mantra no matter what the topic is

That's funny, I was kind of thinking the same about you!

81 posted on 02/17/2006 11:27:28 AM PST by PSYCHO-FREEP (M.S.M. CREED: "Truth has no substance until we give it permission!")
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To: Willie Green

Why the American Public Rejects the Bush Economic "Plan" (Part I)

Because he's p1ssing away OUR money?


82 posted on 02/17/2006 11:29:21 AM PST by WhiteGuy (Care)
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To: GingisK
How pompous of you to parallel yourself with Albert Einstein! LOL! I think that if you are as mentally gifted as you tell us you are, you would be able to understand the nature of the free enterprise system. Things frequently change. Those who diversify, grow and survive.

If you seriously think we are going to buy your "I'm a VICTIM of that big meanie Bush" mantra, and that you are incapable of changing your direction, then you are seriously in need mental counseling.

83 posted on 02/17/2006 11:35:58 AM PST by PSYCHO-FREEP (M.S.M. CREED: "Truth has no substance until we give it permission!")
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To: Willie Green
People vote their pocketbooks.

Right, but they're taking Creative Writing, Environmental Conservation and 5 study halls in high school - not mathematics, real English, 3 semesters of taxation planning, 3 semesters of retirement planning, and 3 semesters of Constitutional theory, etc., etc. So they know they've got a pocketbook, but most of them don't have a clue about how to protect it.

Finally, when they get out of school, they're instructed in political life by attack ads on the teevee, which present the Donks versus the Elephants as a Punch N Judy Show.

84 posted on 02/17/2006 12:54:21 PM PST by an amused spectator (Bush Runner! The Donkey is after you! Bush Runner! When he catches you, you're through!)
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To: oceanview

Give up...you are surrounded by boot lickers...


85 posted on 02/17/2006 12:56:29 PM PST by chasio649
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To: Mase
Our homes are regularly reassessed by the county taxing authority. When they do this, they value your home based on the new market value and your taxes are raised accordingly. Try again?

Your claim was that the fed counts equity as an asset. If that's true then why aren't there federal taxes like they tax corporations' assets?

Earlier, you said they did not own their home. Now you've had to qualify it by saying they do not own it outright. Nice back peddle.

I have always meant "outright ownwership". People who carry a mortgage do not own their homes outright. I am not sure what context you mean by own but I know that mortgaged homes are not "owned" by the people that carry the mortgage.

So those people would be better off renting? Admit it, those numbers show that the average American is doing damn well in this economy and that fact makes it much harder for you to sell your doom and gloom.

I am not selling doom and gloom. I am also not pollyannish.

86 posted on 02/17/2006 4:56:52 PM PST by raybbr (ANWR is a barren, frozen wasteland - like the mind of a democrat!)
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To: raybbr
Your claim was that the fed counts equity as an asset

That's right. Look at the fed funds report and you'll see that homeowner equity, at market value, is absolutely considered an asset.

Fed Funds Report: page 110 of 124

If that's true then why aren't there federal taxes like they tax corporations' assets?

We pay capital gains taxes on the equity if it's more than $250k for singles and $500k for married couples.

People who carry a mortgage do not own their homes outright.

Yup, can't argue with you there. Will you at least admit that there are many more advantages to buying a home than renting one?

87 posted on 02/17/2006 8:37:10 PM PST by Mase
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To: PSYCHO-FREEP; GingisK

Something you notice about the free traitors on this board is that they never have anything intelligent to say so they just throw around insults. Smug fools do that.

Psycho-freep, why are you so incapable of actuat thought ?


88 posted on 02/18/2006 6:51:36 AM PST by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: Mase
We pay capital gains taxes on the equity if it's more than $250k for singles and $500k for married couples.

I know this. My point is that corporations are taxed on assets yearly, not just if they sell them for a capital gain.

Will you at least admit that there are many more advantages to buying a home than renting one?

Without a doubt. My contention arises from economists claiming that equity as an asset is an indicator that the economy is better. I disagree. Mortgages are a debt, not an asset. The equity is an imaginary number that even appraisers will disagree on. How they can come up with a finite value on home equity is what I don't agree with. They don't know how much equity I have in my home. How can they possibly compute this and declare a value?

I disagree with using home "ownership" as a definitive indicator that the economy is booming. Most of those people are carrying debt that is called a mortgage. Also, consider that for the average home buyer he will pay more than 2X the cost of his home by mortgage's end. To me that is a net loss.

On the other hand, I would much rather have the home I live in than rent one or an apartment. It's a headache at times but the three acres of land and open space I have is a blessing compared to living in a hellhole like New Haven, CT which is the nearest city. Even the suburbs are getting overcrowded.

I grew up in the city of Chicago and the houses were about fifteen feet apart. We didn't complain. I don't think I could do it again, though.

89 posted on 02/18/2006 7:12:16 AM PST by raybbr (ANWR is a barren, frozen wasteland - like the mind of a democrat!)
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To: Pox

"To put any credence behind such poll number from those seditionists is insane, IMO."

Can you show us some reputable poll numbers that show something different?


90 posted on 02/18/2006 7:56:34 AM PST by antisocial (Texas SCV - Deo Vindice)
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To: WhiteGuy

"Because he's p1ssing away OUR money?"

I think Bush's economic plan is to see how much money he can spend in 8 years, and how much he can expand government.


91 posted on 02/18/2006 8:18:35 AM PST by antisocial (Texas SCV - Deo Vindice)
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To: oceanview

I'm going by the government's latest report.

Government workers don't make nearly as much as those in comprable positions in the private sector do, so your alleged influx of government jobs wouldn't explain why wealth is at an all time high. Indeed, if government jobs were a greater parter of the mix, wealth should actually go down.

You forget the other side of outsourcing: it controls inflation. If prices are higher, people don't buy, or they buy less. That's very bad for the economy.

We live in the information age now, when non-tangibles like ideas and service are valued commodities.

And how come we weren't wealthier forty years ago, when we were a manufacturing based economy, rather than the service based one we are today?


92 posted on 02/19/2006 11:45:25 AM PST by GeorgiaMike (n)
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To: GeorgiaMike

and if you took those wealth stats, and broke them down, you would find they were heavily generational. who has wealth in the US, real wealth, not debt. older americans do. now of course, that's a normal phenomena, because they have had more time to accumulate it. but if you look at the wealth held by senior citizen americans today, and look at how their children and grandchildren are making their way through the economy - you'd see it is going to be a tough ride for the younger people. pensions are becmong a thing of the past, so is retiree medical coverage, middle aged and young people paying into social security today will get little return on that investment. 40 year interest only mortgages are becoming the norm, and debt loads are generally higher for younger and middle aged people. all these factors will mean that young and middle aged persons today, will have much harder financial times in their retirements, then current seniors do.

the best bet that these younger and middle aged persons have at accumulating real wealth is - inheritance.

let's hope grandma and grandpa don't blow it all at the casinos and the nursing homes.


93 posted on 02/19/2006 11:53:56 AM PST by oceanview
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To: Willie Green
So the tax burden on Americans is now 17.1% of GDP,,,when in the previous 40 years it was 18.3 of GDP%? OH REALLY?

I guess whoever came up with those figures hasn't looked at the taxes on his/her phone bill, cable bill, gas bill, electric bill, water bill, cell phone bill, sewer bill, airline tickets, etc--not to mention the higher federal/state taxes on gasoline, higher real estate taxes, and higher state sales taxes. I guess that THOSE don't count.

Yep, we certainly are paying less taxes under President Bush and taxes need to go up! (rolling eyes--sarcasm/off)

94 posted on 02/19/2006 11:58:19 AM PST by stockstrader
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To: PSYCHO-FREEP
How pompous of you to parallel yourself with Albert Einstein!

I made no such comparison to myself and Einstein. I can assure you however, that most jobs "possibilities" that are thrown to us engineers are similar to the analogy I provided. Since you don't understand what we do, however, you don't understand the analogy. This is just like Bush, who presumes to represent me.

It is foolish of you to presume that tough engineering curriculum's and thirty years of experience and study constitute "menial" or "rote" labor. I dare say I could indeed burn your brain by exposing you to a sample of what I do for a living. I'm no Einstein, but I'm not a dim bulb either.

95 posted on 02/19/2006 4:12:46 PM PST by GingisK
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