Monday, October 31, 2011

What Obama Accomplished in Libya

On October 20th, Barack Obama said that "he is "very proud" of the US role in the Libyan operation, calling it proof that working with allies can be effective."

But what, effectively, did we accomplish? On October 31st, the Daily Mail reported:

The black flag of Al Qaeda was hoisted in Libya yesterday as Nato formally ended its military campaign.

The standard fluttered from the roof of the courthouse in Benghazi, where the country’s new rulers have imposed sharia law since seizing power.

What did we accomplish? Our blind ambition to spread democracy and ruthlessly depose dictators has created a political vacuum in Libya that has granted a legitimate mandate for the most notorious anti-Western terrorist organization on the planet.

Ten years ago, George W. Bush declared war on Al Qaeda for their crimes against America and the Western World. He began a mission to seek out and destroy this vile terrorist organization at all costs.

In 2011, Barack Obama had a hand in giving them a nation. And he is proud of this accomplishment.

William Sullivan

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Will 9-9-9 Hurt the Middle Class?

There's a lot of mish-mashed conservative talk out there about Herman Cain’s proposed 9-9-9 tax plan being a tax-hike for the middle class.  The latest came from Rick Santorum in last night's debate, in which he suggested that cutting corporate and income taxes to a flat 9% while applying a federal sales tax of 9% would equate to a tax increase for 84% of Americans, as reported in a recent tax analysis.  Exacerbating this travesty, he suggests, is that Cain’s plan allows no deductions for poverty stricken families and the middle class.
In trying to discredit Herman Cain, Rick Santorum discredits himself- by regurgitating scare tactics and broad, untrue statements akin to Obama's promise in 2008 to "cut taxes from 95% of American families."  

First, let's do some basic math.  Utilizing the current marginal tax rates, a family earning $75,000 annually finds itself in the 25% tax bracket.  With the progressive application of federal income tax, this tax is actually ~15% of wages.  This is 3% less than Cain’s suggested 18% that would be paid in federal income tax on wages earned and sales tax on items purchased.  Sounds like Herman might be giving the middle class a raw deal, huh?  Well, consider the payroll taxes that wage earners currently pay, and this same family will see an additional 7.65% of their wages garnished for Social Security and Medicare, for a grand total of 22.65%.  Cain’s suggested plan replaces these costs in the simplistic 9-9-9 plan, and this 18% is 4.65% lower than this number.
If I know anything about which number is lower than the other number, Cain’s 18% is a reduction in federal taxes for middle-class Americans, not a tax-hike.     
Second, consider that high corporate taxes account for added consumer cost, as companies generally pass these levied corporate taxes on to consumers in the form of higher prices.**  By reducing corporate taxes, prices will naturally fall for competing companies in multiple areas of production.  You don't have to call it "cutting taxes for the middle class" if that doesn't agree with you.  Let's just call it, "a plan to let the middle class keep more of their hard-earned money."
Finally, it’s clear that Santorum didn’t think through his accusation that the plan “eliminates” deductions.  Cain’s website clearly states that deductions on both income and sales tax will be applied via “empowerment zones” to lessen the burden on those who might need such support.  Herman kindly reminded him of this on the stage, another well-placed nail in the coffin containing Santorum’s presidential ambition.
Herman Cain's 9-9-9 plan does have some questions surrounding it.  For example, the aboliton of current tax code would decimate the accounting industry, harming growth and GDP while costing American jobs.  Another concern I have is that retirees, who generally keep income low to avoid higher taxation of retirement accounts, might see increases in taxes paid, which could harm their retirement outlook.  But how are we to address these questions and find solutions if Herman Cain is constantly having to deflect untrue claims that 9-9-9 amounts to a huge tax-hike?
William Sullivan
** Argument supporting this economic reality can be found here.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Retro Debate- Herman Cain vs. Bill Clinton

Very interesting video, from 1994.

You've got to hand it to Slick Willy.  First of all, I give him credit for honestly fielding and addressing the question.  At least Clinton tries to debate the numbers before crawling back into the bastion of party talking points, like "balanced approach," and "fair shares," which is more than we could ever expect of our current president.  Second, he sure knows how to work an audience.  When Clinton's argument confirms that HillaryCare would increase cost for businesses across America, what does he do?  He cracks a joke, poking fun at his notorious love of food, and suggests that the healthcare mandates would only add 2% to Cain's company's bottom line.  And that's no big deal, right?  Just pass it on to consumers, they'll pay it!

Sound familiar? If you have a Bank of America account, it should. A recent federal mandate levied by those lawyers in Washington (and unsurprisingly, spearheaded by Democrats) has negatively impacted BoA's profitability, so now we have to pay $5 a month to use our debit cards. Administrative costs have been passed on to consumers.  No big deal either, I guess. 

But once the laughter from Clinton's joke subsides, Cain explains that this "2%" figure, and his numbers in general, are all wrong.  The burden to the company would be much higher than Clinton estimates.  But shortly after, Clinton skates out of this moment with minimal damage by suggesting that if Cain would only send his numbers to the White House office, Slick Willy'd straighten him out.  Cain then went on to send over those numbers, and subsequently authored an op-ed on the subject for the Wall Street Journal, and is credited as a major factor in the collapse of support for HillaryCare. 

Personally, I'd relish an opportunity to see Herman Cain debate Barack Obama, and have become more excited at the prospect after seeing this exchange with Bill Clinton, who is, in my estimation, far more skilled in debate than our current teleprompter junkie in the Oval Office.  It would be an absolute evisceration of Obama's platform. One guy is a seasoned businessman and mathematician that understands real-world fiscal operation, and the other guy is a college professor and politician that understands the socialistic concepts that he read about in some books. One guy has created geniune wealth, while the other has only manipulated it to satisfy his radical ideology.

Every four years, we bicker about which representative we should select from among the putrid cesspool that is American politics.  I, for one, find Herman Cain to be a breath of fresh air, and miles from ordinary.
William Sullivan

Friday, October 7, 2011

Lawrence O’Donnell Plunges the Left to New Depths

The most disgraceful interview I have ever seen.  (Full video here.)

Herman Cain completely destroys Lawrence O'Donnell on every race-baiting issue thrown his way. And on the issue of Vietnam? Cain worked with the Department of the Navy on ballistic missile testing during that era as a mathematician. Cain explains that in the later years, when he would have been eligible to serve, he entered the lottery, and would have served had he been selected. 

Wait for it- O'Donnell suggests that he should have just joined rather than enter a lottery, and brings up John Kerry as a reference for bravery, for what Cain should have done! A leftist media darling Kerry may be, but loved by the military he is not- I guess that's what happens when you slather lies to incriminate your fellow soldiers and sensationalize your political platform after your service, and then take the national stage to say that the military is comprised of uneducated simpletons.

(Apparently, a military not without a sense of humor, though.  See below)

O'Donnell says he is offended for the soldiers that decided to go to war while Cain simply made himself available to go to war. Wondering what O’Donnell did during Vietnam? Curious? He was in college and got a deferment- and this is the platform he’s using to scold Cain for avoiding the war. Is that really any more righteous? You’ve got to think, is being a hypocrite is a positive trait for American progressives?

Better yet, poll the military: ask who they'd rather have as president and commander-in-chief. A lucid businessman who served our military as a ballistic missile tech for the Navy, or a rabble-rouser with no connection to the military whatsoever.  We all know the answer to this question, don't we?

What a stupid, irresponsible accusation, from a stupid, irresponsible man. I'd say he should be fired, but he currently has the lowest rated show on the major networks in his time slot, so maybe he'll just go away naturally. 

Nonetheless, Herman Cain continues to impress.

William Sullivan