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Opinion: Both Parties Prefer Fairy Tales to Truth on Economy

Opinion: Both Parties Prefer Fairy Tales to Truth on Economy | Politicality | Scoop.it

NOTE: This article, while balanced in its criticism of both major parties, is itself complicit in lie of omission that seems to suit both Republicans and Democrats. Comprehensive Immigration Reform rankles fear-based Republicans and makes risk-averse Democrats quake in their boots, but when we come together as a nation and achieve an immigration policy that meets the labor demands of a GROWING economy, the long-term fiscal challenges mentioned below will be helped tremendously by a booming GDP, and, having our ratio of workers-to-retirees increase instead of decrease — the ratio is decreasing over the next 15 years as the Baby Boomers retire. We need to adjust our policies so that our working-age population increases rapidly (immigration). We can't declare a baby-making holiday (as Russia has done) and wait 18 years. We don't have time for that. Social Security and Medicare will be in much better shape when we decide as a nation that our fear of demographic shift is less important than the long term fiscal solvency and economic growth of our nation. —Eric Byler


by SOLOMON KLEINSMITH, It's a Free Country

 

Ideology is a dangerous thing. For people who believe in an ideology deeply, plain to see facts don't hold a candle to fundamental tenets. You can see this in all forms of ideology, cultural, religious or political.

 

There are enough of these persistent myths that you could write a small library of books about them, but one of the most dangerous is this idea that tax cuts magically pay for themselves. Many on the right believe this fairy tale with a great deal of zeal. It would be amazing if it were true, and in perfect political propagandistic form... those that benefit from widespread belief in this myth repeat it over and over and over, knowing that there is a segment of the population that will eat it up.

 

But it doesn't hold up to scrutiny when you actually look back at how it has played out in the past. The latest illustration comes from a report from the Library of Congress' Congressional Research Service, which found very little to connect lower tax rates to higher economic growth:

 

"Advocates of lower tax rates argue that reduced rates would increase economic growth, increase saving and investment, and boost productivity (increase the economic pie)... There is not conclusive evidence, however, to substantiate a clear relationship between the 65-year steady reduction in the top tax rates and economic growth. Analysis of such data suggests the reduction in the top tax rates have had little association with saving, investment, or productivity growth. However, the top tax rate reductions appear to be associated with the increasing concentration of income at the top of the income distribution."


I had a fantastic conversation related to this a few days ago, with an entrepreneur who's startup I am likely to be doing some work with. As a business owner, he said he'd like to see lower taxes, but wasn't under the illusion that they magically paid for themselves by huge economic growth spikes following them. He went on to talk about how the tax cuts during the Reagan years were so successful because of how they solved the issue of a severe lack of investment capital - something that isn't even close to the case today.

 

In fact, the world market is awash in cheap cash that is looking for something to invest in. What is sorely needed are investments that have value, and unmet and growing demand. Cutting taxes on the wealthy solves none of this. What it would do, as the study mentioned above states, is put more capital into the hands of those who already have the most, and it in the mean time it make the debt and deficit issues that are facing the next few generations even more unfair, selfish and hard to tackle.

 

The Democrats have their own fairy tales. Most relevant to this conversation being the idea that we can have a skyrocketing retired population, keep Social Security and Medicare spending roughly as is and balance the budget without huge tax increases on the middle class like you see in the tax rates in Europe. Both sides want to have their cake and eat it too, and are going out of their way to make the only people who actually end up bearing the costs be future generations, most of whom aren't even born yet. [MORE]


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Business Advice from a 19th Century Paris Madam - Really? Madame Alexandra's Rules of Business - Jan Moran

Business Advice from a 19th Century Paris Madam - Really? Madame Alexandra's Rules of Business - Jan Moran | Politicality | Scoop.it
Part non-fiction, part fiction, Madame Alexandra’s Rules of Business: The Enduring Principles of Business Success dispenses ageless advice.

Via Jan Moran, Patricia Tallman
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Jan Moran's curator insight, March 26, 2014 6:40 PM

A clever little book that should be a business standard...

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Sun shines on #MoralMarch as massive crowd sings "We Shall Overcome"

The emergence of the sun from behind cloud cover for the first time on Feb. 8, 2014 was taken as a sign by many from the faith community, and inspired an emotional moment for most of the tens of thousands who attended the Moral March on Raleigh. The freedom song "We Shall Overcome" had just shifted into "we are not afraid" as the day's first sunlight pushed through the clouds.

VIDEO BY: Emily Frachtling, Rhett Rebold, Eric Byler, Annabel Park


Via Eric Byler, Coffee Party USA
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Monica S Mcfeeters's curator insight, February 22, 2014 10:51 AM

This is about the new restrictive voting policy in North Carolina and the Moral Monday push back from thousands of NC citizens there that has been occurring for months on Mondays. Money in politics is behind the push to find ways to take the voters out of the vote. We voters are the Wild Card that could undermine the influence of money in politics and policy shaping.


Restrictive voting mandates have been pushed in a growing numbers of states. One must ask how does shortening early voting and Sunday voting and other types of changes prevent voter fraud which really has not even been demonstrated  anyway? It just prevents many from voting.


The proven fraud only occurred in registration to any noticeable degree because people were paid by the numbers they registered. Mickey Mouse and the dead people they registered did not actually show up to vote. Had they have shown up I'm sure someone would have noticed. Some might add that deleting voters in Florida and counting chads may have been the last seriously potential voting fraud and having voters photo IDs really would not have prevented that. Others might say the MItt Romney's son owning the voting machines could have also posed more serious risk of voter fraud then recruiting lots of people to physically walk into voting booths and personally lie about who they are, so that they might wait in line over and over and do that multiple times on the same few days or weeks. Think about it...How much would you have to pay people to do that?

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Politics live: readers' edition - Monday 5 August - The Guardian

Politics live: readers' edition - Monday 5 August - The Guardian | Politicality | Scoop.it
The Guardian
Politics live: readers' edition - Monday 5 August
The Guardian
I'm not writing my usual Politics Live blog today, but, as an alternative, here's Politics Live: readers' edition.
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Attorney General Moves to Forefront of Virginia Conservative Resurgence - NYTimes.com

Attorney General Moves to Forefront of Virginia Conservative Resurgence - NYTimes.com | Politicality | Scoop.it
Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II has surprised even his most ardent supporters with several high-profile legal actions that have ignited political firestorms. (NYTImes: "Mr.
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Notorious for prefering to regulate vaginas instead of businesses.

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In 2008, Obama was optimistic on race. Today showed he’s changed.

In 2008, Obama was optimistic on race. Today showed he’s changed. | Politicality | Scoop.it
This was a speech by a president who believed his words could very easily tear the country apart.
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Court renews secret U.S. surveillance program

Court renews secret U.S. surveillance program | Politicality | Scoop.it
A top-secret court has renewed the authority of U.S. national security officials to collect telephone data as part of an anti-terror surveillance program that was exposed by intelligence leaker Edward Snowden.
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Detroit Bankruptcy: What Other Cities Are Teetering

Detroit Bankruptcy: What Other Cities Are Teetering | Politicality | Scoop.it
Municipal bankruptcy-protection filings --or Chapter 9 filings – have been relatively rare the past few year, despite warnings from a certain high profile analyst. (Dem Legacy- putting politics b4 wellbeing of future citizens.
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Attorney General Moves to Forefront of Virginia Conservative Resurgence - NYTimes.com

Attorney General Moves to Forefront of Virginia Conservative Resurgence - NYTimes.com | Politicality | Scoop.it
Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II has surprised even his most ardent supporters with several high-profile legal actions that have ignited political firestorms. (NYTImes: "Mr.
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John Davis's curator insight, August 5, 2013 10:07 AM

Notorious for prefering to regulate vaginas instead of businesses.

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Chris Matthews chides 'same-politics marriage' between NRA and RNC chiefs - Raw Story

Chris Matthews chides 'same-politics marriage' between NRA and RNC chiefs - Raw Story | Politicality | Scoop.it
Raw Story
Chris Matthews chides 'same-politics marriage' between NRA and RNC chiefs
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The National Rifle Association is now engaged in some same-politics marriage with the Republican National Committee.
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Wake up Mr PM, your silence is no longer an asset

Wake up Mr PM, your silence is no longer an asset | Politicality | Scoop.it
Sadly the very qualities that one found appealing in Dr Singh have returned to haunt him.
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Cecilia Muñoz’s Perseverance in Immigration Push

Cecilia Muñoz’s Perseverance in Immigration Push | Politicality | Scoop.it
Cecilia Muñoz, a longtime activist, was denounced after she joined the Obama administration and defended its deportation policy. But her loyalty appears to have paid off.
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Obama to tap veteran envoy for Afghan-Pakistan post - Boston Globe

Obama to tap veteran envoy for Afghan-Pakistan post - Boston Globe | Politicality | Scoop.it
The Nation Obama to tap veteran envoy for Afghan-Pakistan post Boston Globe After Holbrooke's death in December 2010, the job went to Marc Grossman, another career diplomat who devoted his tenure to efforts, ultimately fruitless, to negotiate a...
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Jeweler, Costco face off in NY over Tiffany rings

Politics: Jeweler, Costco face off in NY over Tiffany rings (Providence Journal): Share With Friends: | | Po... http://t.co/7xccaqcHuP
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From Estonia to Azerbaijan: American Strategy After Ukraine

From Estonia to Azerbaijan: American Strategy After Ukraine | Politicality | Scoop.it

Washington will maintain a balance of power in Central and Eastern Europe by creating an alliance structure.


By George Friedman


As I discussed last week, the fundamental problem that Ukraine poses for Russia, beyond a long-term geographical threat, is a crisis in internal legitimacy. Russian President Vladimir Putin has spent his time in power rebuilding the authority of the Russian state within Russia and the authority of Russia within the former Soviet Union. The events in Ukraine undermine the second strategy and potentially the first. If Putin cannot maintain at least Ukrainian neutrality, then the world's perception of him as a master strategist is shattered, and the legitimacy and authority he has built for the Russian state is, at best, shaken. 

Whatever the origins of the events in Ukraine, the United States is now engaged in a confrontation with Russia. The Russians believe that the United States was the prime mover behind regime change in Ukraine. At the very least, the Russians intend to reverse events in Ukraine. At most, the Russians have reached the conclusion that the United States intends to undermine Russia's power. They will resist. The United States has the option of declining confrontation, engaging inmeaningless sanctions against individuals and allowing events to take their course. Alternatively, the United States can choose to engage and confront the Russians. 

A failure to engage at this point would cause countries around Russia's periphery, from Estonia to Azerbaijan, to conclude that with the United States withdrawn and Europe fragmented, they must reach an accommodation with Russia. This will expand Russian power and open the door to Russian influence spreading on the European Peninsula itself. The United States has fought three wars (World War I, World War II and the Cold War) to prevent hegemonic domination of the region. Failure to engage would be a reversal of a century-old strategy.

The American dilemma is how to address the strategic context in a global setting in which it is less involved in the Middle East and is continuing to work toward a "pivot to Asia." Nor can the United States simply allow events to take their course. The United States needs a strategy that is economical and coherent militarily, politically and financially. It has two advantages. Some of the countries on Russia's periphery do not want to be dominated by her. Russia, in spite of some strengths, is inherently weak and does not require U.S. exertion on the order of the two World Wars, the Cold War or even the Middle East engagements of the past decade. 



Read more: From Estonia to Azerbaijan: American Strategy After Ukraine | Stratfor 


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Coffee Party USA's curator insight, March 25, 2014 9:01 AM

I find myself thinking as I try to understand what's happening in Ukraine and on the larger geopolitical stage that if it wasn't for fossil fuels, how much of this would matter?

 

Since parts of Europe are almost solely dependent on Russia for energy and, likewise, Russia is very dependent on energy exports for revenues, what would happen if Europe started a massive build of solar and wind farms instead of fracking or importing fossil fuels from elsewhere? Wouldn't that weaken Russia and be better for everyone except the Big Money in the fossil fuel industry?

 

And, couldn't going green be done faster and maybe even cheaper - certainly it would be cleaner - than more drilling, mining, and refining? Think about it. What would be better, trying to get Turkey to allow Azerbaijan, a fossil-fuel rich country, to build pipelines to Europe, or Europe building wind and solar farms? (Yes, I know you can't run cars on solar - or can you?)

 

Why doesn't Europe just keep going greener and tell Russia - and us and the fossil fuel industry - to put the oil, coal, and natural gas where the sun doesn't shine?

 

Green energy is abundant and available to every single country and person on the planet. Ask yourself what's really best for us and in our long term interests; dirtier and more expensive fossil fuels nations are ready to go to war over, or renewable energy, and doesn't going green take on of Putin's strongest trump cards, the issue of energy, off the table and thereby weaken Russia?


(The views expressed above are my own and do not reflect any official position or views of Coffee Party USA. Greg R., Curator, Coffee Party News.)

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Kentucky Political Staple: Barbs and Barbecue - New York Times

Kentucky Political Staple: Barbs and Barbecue - New York Times | Politicality | Scoop.it
New York Times Kentucky Political Staple: Barbs and Barbecue New York Times But it was the feast of political insults that drew hundreds to a shed nearby, where Senator Mitch McConnell and challengers on his left and right participated in a...
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Politics 2014: Nobody's sayin' nuthin' about runnin' - UPI.com

Politics 2014: Nobody's sayin' nuthin' about runnin' - UPI.com | Politicality | Scoop.it
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Politics 2014: Nobody's sayin' nuthin' about runnin'
UPI.com
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's social schedule last week added more fuel to the political flames about her future and possible designs on the White House.
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Detroit Bankruptcy: What Other Cities Are Teetering

Detroit Bankruptcy: What Other Cities Are Teetering | Politicality | Scoop.it
Municipal bankruptcy-protection filings --or Chapter 9 filings – have been relatively rare the past few year, despite warnings from a certain high profile analyst. (Dem Legacy- putting politics b4 wellbeing of future citizens.
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Court renews secret U.S. surveillance program

Court renews secret U.S. surveillance program | Politicality | Scoop.it
A top-secret court has renewed the authority of U.S. national security officials to collect telephone data as part of an anti-terror surveillance program that was exposed by intelligence leaker Edward Snowden.
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In 2008, Obama was optimistic on race. Today showed he’s changed.

In 2008, Obama was optimistic on race. Today showed he’s changed. | Politicality | Scoop.it
This was a speech by a president who believed his words could very easily tear the country apart.
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Obama: ‘Trayvon Martin could have been me’

Obama: ‘Trayvon Martin could have been me’ | Politicality | Scoop.it
President Obama discussed the George Zimmerman acquittal in the killing of teenager Trayvon Martin during a surprise appearance at the White House briefing on Friday. (Awesome.
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LUCKY: School Closes For A 'Sun Day'

LUCKY: School Closes For A 'Sun Day' | Politicality | Scoop.it
SEATTLE — In a sun-deprived part of Washington state, the promise of nice spring weather prompted a small private school to give students a day off to enjoy the sunshine.
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Bavaria nepotism scandal: 79 MPs named - The Local - m.thelocal.de

Bavaria nepotism scandal: 79 MPs named - The Local - m.thelocal.de | Politicality | Scoop.it
what causes a scandal in germany is called one-upping the system in lebanon #nepotism #bavaria http://t.co/Shcv8HXnyQ via @TheLocalGermany
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snopes.com: Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, POW

snopes.com: Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, POW | Politicality | Scoop.it
A U.S. soldier named Bowe Bergdahl has been held prisoner since being captured by the Taliban in 2009?
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Politics is a fishy business: Pakistani lawmaker holds political rally at sea - Fox News

Politics is a fishy business: Pakistani lawmaker holds political rally at sea - Fox News | Politicality | Scoop.it
Politics is a fishy business: Pakistani lawmaker holds political rally at sea
Fox News
Backers of independent political candidate Haji Usman Ghani took to the water Friday on a flotilla of fishing boats.
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Border Wars, Rand Paul: Five Stories You'll Care About in Politics Next Week - ABC News

Border Wars, Rand Paul: Five Stories You'll Care About in Politics Next Week - ABC News | Politicality | Scoop.it
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Border Wars, Rand Paul: Five Stories You'll Care About in Politics Next Week
ABC News
Tuesday is Election Day in South Carolina's First Congressional District, with Mark Sanford's political comeback on the line.
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