Wednesday, February 4, 2009


If you've been following the thread on my post about Obama's cabinet resignations over tax problems,check out this and this on today's Huffington Post.


JIm said...

Even if Daschle is ignorant of tax regs, ignorance is not a defense with the IRS, as was stated in Huffington. His ignorance on tax issues however, is quite plausable given the inane tax policies he supported over the years. It is interesting that he made his fortune advising lobbyists, but not actually being a registered lobbyist. Sounds like "What is the meaning of is?" Quite a few Democrats in the news seem to think that the rules apply to everyone but them. A short list of names follow: Frank, Dodd, Daschle, Geitner, Rangel, Jefferson.

TRADEBUM said...

the issue i have is that obama picks someone so against everything he stands for in the name of changing the way washington does business. daschle was paid $2mil to lobby on behalf of the healthcare industry and reason he lost reelection was that he and his wife, also the lobbyist, bought some 2mil dollar home in dc. to south dakotans, that was last straw.
to me, you drive around dc with car and driver for THREE years and don't think you should have to pay taxes. THIS hubris is what is wrong with our country. democrat or republican. they are all guilty. and ps: his corrupt brethen would have confirmed him despite all this. its the american public who has had just about enough.
and there are alot of others who are better qualified(no lobbying ties) to run HHS, like bring back donna shalala or that other healthcare expert from harvard who's name escapes me. HELLO? is right.
ENOUGH already. Someone needs to be reminded about what public service is supposed to mean. I am sick to death of public servants getting higher pay and free healthcare at my expense while i do without.

JIm said...

CIA Nominee Panetta
Could this be number five??

The former White House chief of staff's disclosure form also shows the delicate balance President Barack Obama is trying to strike -- trying to curb the influence of lobbyists in his administration, while relying on long-time Washington veterans who often help clients navigate the halls of power. Mr. Panetta's forms show that he performed government affairs consulting last year and also sat on the board of a public affairs firm that lobbies Congress. Like Mr. Daschle, who also worked for a firm with lobbying clients, Mr. Panetta doesn't violate Mr. Obama's ban on hiring registered lobbyists.

JIm said...

Obama's, Horns of a Dilemma

We can only hope that the "Stimulus (Pork) Bill that the house has presented was crafted by Pelosi and Company and had very little impute from Obama. Obama's choice is, does he please his left wing base and approve the non employment pork bill that fulfills pent up desires of the wacko left, or does he attempt to throw out the pork and go for tax cuts, mortgage reduction and work out of existing mortgages that the Republicans offer. If he pleases his wacko base, he risks alienating the US majority. If he goes for much of the Republican plan that has a higher chance of, actually, working he alienates his base. It should be an interesting couple of weeks.

Lally said...

'Cause lord knows, the rightwing Republicans that got us in this mess ain't "wacko"!

Butch in Waukegan said...

First, what TRADEBUM said.

Michael directs us to Dylan Loewe , who writes
. . . his [Daschle's] actions actually were excusable. The only thing more implausible than believing that a multi-millionaire with national ambitions would willfully try to defraud the IRS of $140,000 is believing that a man like that actually does his own taxes. Of course, he signs his name to them and is, as such, legally responsible for their content. But morally reprehensible? It was an error on his taxes, most likely committed by his CPA.

I am suspicious of "errors" when they're to the advantage of the one making the error. How many tax "errors" has Daschle made that cost him money? And to claim that because he is rich he really doesn't care about $140,000 is ludicrous. The few very wealthy people I've known are very clear where their money comes from and where it goes. There is abundant evidence that Daschle does too.

But what is really disturbing is the moral universe Loewe describes. According to him if you have enough money you escape moral culpability for your actions. So I guess Bush is not a war criminal because his lawyers told him torture is legal.

One set of legal and moral rules for the elite, another for the rest of us schlubs.

Butch in Waukegan said...

Pork, the real thing.

The average tax rate paid by the richest 400 Americans fell by a third to 17.2 percent through the first six years of the Bush Administration and their average income doubled to $263.3 million, new IRS data show. The 17.2 percent tax rate in 2006 was the lowest since the IRS began tracking the 400 largest taxpayers in 1992, although the richest 400 Americans paid more tax on an inflation-adjusted basis than any year since 2000.

The drop from 2001’s tax rate of 22.9 percent was due largely to ex-President George W. Bush’s push to cut tax rates on most capital gains to 15 percent in 2003.

Bloomberg via Laura Rozen via Harpers:

Remember a few years ago when Warren Buffet testified that he was in a lower tax bracket than his secretary? This is a big part of our current problems.

JIm said...

The root of the problem is mortgages and real estate, Mortgage problem has it roots in Carter, Clinton, Frank and Dodd. The encouragement of home ownership by people who could not make mortgage payments was a program of the Democrats. The Bush administration and Greenspan tried to get congress to stop it in 03 and 04. This has all been said before on this blog and backed up with historical footnotes and quotes. It is difficult for the Wacky Left to accept reality and history when it conflicts with dogma.

John M. Lally said...

The housing problem is more about house prices than about mortgages.

The medical care problem is more about prices of medical treatment (and drugs) than about insurance.

The minimum wage problem is more about the maximum wages.

The real problems lie in places where Congress will never look for them.

JIm said...

John M,
The housing bubble would never have happened without the easy money that congress encouraged. FNMAE and FREDDIC MAC were leverage 100:1 at congress's behest. According to the Democrats in congress, every one had the right to own a home and it was congress's duty to encourage profligate lending, which they did.