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June 30, 2004

Comments

Moe Lane

Hey, what the heck did I do? :)

TM

Stop making sense...

Moe Lane

Sorry that you feel that way.

TM

I'm just jealous. Someday I hope to discuss Hillary calmly.

Moe Lane

Ah; never mind my earlier raised eyebrow. :) Anyway, I find that contemplating the alternatives to Senator Clinton helps. Your mileage may vary.

Ricky

Correction: "it is helpful, on occasion, to imagine for a moment that the leaders of the other side are not corrupt, crazed criminals....but it's okay to presume that they're racists and AWOL"

TM

Dems may want to position Kerry as the Anybody But Clinton alternative.

Pouncer

To me, the interesting bits are the pronouns. The antecedents of her phrase are "wealthy people" who have profited from recent "government" policies... She then says,

"WE" must take money away from "YOU" ...


Meaning that she is a member of the class of government, (which is true) but distinct from the class of "wealthy people". Given her book deal and earlier wealth building exercises, such as commodity trading, that's just -- interesting. Also, it suggests that "wealthy people" are not, and implicitly can never be, part of "the government". Suggesting to my skeptical mind that people in general, especially "common good" people, are not in her estimationg typically suited to govern.

I acknowlege I'm reading a lot into two pronouns.

Still, wouldn't it have been a different sentence if she had urged Democratic supporters:

"YOU should support Democratic Party efforts to shift the common burden of taxes -- so that WE who have benefitted more from the good times pay more of OUR share of the common fare. "

Or something like that. Peggy Noonan, I am not.

(Nor could I play her on televison...)

Of course, if she had ever acclimated to Arkansas, she might be able to use a more specific pronoun, "y'all" :

"Y'all oughta fix it so's all us rich bitches pay a fair share ..."

Uhm. Maybe not.


Jim Glass

Hey, how about acting 'for the common good' something like this way:

"All you wealthy folks, you don't *need* transfers from those poorer than you to top off your retirement incomes and and pick up all your non-catastrophic health care costs that you can well afford to pay for yourselves.

"So we will be taking these goodies away from you for the common good, to strengthen our future national fiscal situation. And also to set the valuable precedent that what we've always sold as "social insurance" really is *insurance* -- we meant it! No, Warren, you don't get to collect it from your Dairy Queen employees because you haven't experienced an insurable event.

"Which means we'll now be lowering taxes on your employees and the rest of the working class too. It's the progressive way!

"Yours with tough love,

"Hillary."

TM

Willie Sutton's timeless insight lives - just as tax cuts mostly target "the rich", future tax hikes will amost surely target "the rich" because that's where the money is.

This ,a href="http://www.cbo.gov/showdoc.cfm?index=5324&sequence=0">CBO chart of tax rates and tax burdens by income quintile makes the point. If (cherry-picking the tax data most helpful to me) we concentrate on income taxes, we see that the bottom 60% of households pay about 5% to 7% of the total Federal income tax. Any lilely tax increase will have to hit the top two quintliles, as per Willie Sutton, and it is the top quintile that pays around 75% to 80% of the income tax. My guess - an increase in Fed Income taxes can pretty much only target "the rich", for pretty much the same reasons that tax cuts "only" help them.

A similar argument can be made for the total tax burden. As James G points out, means testing Social Security and Medicare would also help balance the load - maybe Kerry should have a burst of honesty and say so. As if.

The Other John Hawkins

It's simple. Hillary thinks that it would be better for her to spend our money than for us to spend it.

Either she thinks that because she believes her spending decisions would make *us* happier - in which case she's arrogant and wrong - or because they'd make *her* happier - in which case she's just wicked and evil.

I'm perfectly willing to believe she's just arrogant and wrong. Lots of people are, and some of them even make ammends for it. Eventually.

Paul Zrimsek

This may be another case of actions taking a back seat to intentions in people's minds: they seem to be reacting not so much to the innocuous content of Clinton's statement as to the bossy pleasure she appears to take in making it.

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