Thursday, October 6, 2011

Bachmann Strikes Again

Speaking of Right Wing Crazies, Michelle Bachmann is back in the news, handing over more ammo to people like me, people who think that she has a little (OK, a lot) of trouble keeping the facts straight. Three weeks ago, she said the HPV vaccine, used to prevent cervical cancer, can cause mental retardation. This time.she seems to be having trouble keeping info about our ECONOMY straight. I'm going to repeat that, it might be vaugely important. The woman who wants to be in charge of the ECONOMY can't even get facts about it in the states right. She was in Sioux City, Iowa, it was like any other town hall. Talk about why she should be elected, make Obama one termer, take questions. She was asked about the Keystone Pipeline, a proposal that would create an oil pipeline between Alberta, Canada and Texas. She spoke in support of it and then made her mistake. She "heard" that North Dakota "is the only nation running a surplus, because they were using their resources." The first part makes me a little nervous, if only because that makes it seem like she doesn't even have a clue about the makeup of the country. But North Dakota was one of FOUR STATES to make a surplus. Her spokeswoman said that the point was that Ms. Bachmann views energy in terms of economics, while the President views it as environmental. My question is, why can't it be both? I believe green energy could create just as many jobs and oil does. Eventually, in fact, green jobs may outnumber oil. The problem with her latest statement is, she's repeating all these things that seem pretty easy to verify. So why doesn't she? Is she forgetful? Or is she, perhaps, in the same line as every other politician: the line of misinformation, of spinning? One can only wonder if she is the right choice for America.

Herman Cain

How many would have guessed that a former pizza business CEO with no political experience would be picking up steam in the primaries? But those are the strange times we live in, where everyone is so frustrated with the elected officials who don't do anything, they'll take anything. Including, judging from his past statements, a right winger with a couple of conspiracy theories. Starting with an interview he gave to the Wall Street Journal, in which he said the protests against Wall Street were organized to distract from Obama's failing's as a president. But then he took it a step farther and said that if you are poor, and you have no job, you have only yourself to blame. Not Wall Street, and not the big banks, because God knows that they were angels, with their subprime mortgages and extensive loaning to anyone with a pulse. Nope, it is all your fault. As a person with no job, I think I have the right to say: this guy is an idiot. First of all, it flies in the face of the truth: that because of the banks and Wall Street selling these risky loans and what not, we had a financial catastrophe. Said catastrophe caused millions of people to get laid off/fired. It also had to have increased the number of poor people out there. But Cain seems to think the catastrophe of the past is over. this jackass doesn't seem to realize that even though it happened three years ago, we are still feeling the effects now.

Meantime, his tax plan isn't that great either. Cain has been touting a nine percent flat income tax, nine percent national sales tax, and scrapping the rest of the code. Michael Linden of the  Center for American Progress ran the numbers. As it turns out, not only does the "9-9-9" tax hurt poor people more, it doesn't come anywhere near raising the same amount of revenues that the current tax code does. It would only raise 1.3 trillion dollars. Sounds like a lot, right? Turns out, that is only 9.2% of our Gross Domestic Product. We collected twice of that in 2007. So Herman Cain cut revenues in half. And even if we somehow cut spending to the "historic average", we would have deficits that are 11 percent of GDP, which is bigger than any since WW2. Hell, that's more than the past three years! The poor, who currently pay 2 percent in tax would see a jump to 18 percent (Nine percent on income, 9 percent on spending). Middle classers, what's left of them, can expect an increase from 14 to 18 percent. And the rich? Theirs would go from 28 to 11 percent. This is just one more example of the lack of reality on the Republican side. And, as Meg Ryan might say, "Instead of a brain, you have a cash register. Instead of a heart, a bottom line."