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The last 30 days or so were dominated by horse race coverage, RNC coverage, typewriter coverage, and (finally and thankfully) a growing awareness of the rapid deterioration of the already unstable situation in Iraq. But to my mind, the most memorable events of this last month didn't get the ink that those other issues did. The last 30 days provided us with two signature moments that really epitomize the unrelenting desire of the Republican Party to destroy the middle class of this country. First, in late August, the Bush Labor Department torched 60 years of overtime law to enact the biggest middle-class pay cut in American history. And now, in late September, the Republican Congress -- unsatisfied with merely slashing workers' pay -- has raised taxes on the poorest working Americans.*
Congressional negotiators beat back efforts yesterday to expand and preserve tax refunds for poor families, even as they added $13 billion in corporate tax breaks to a package of middle-class tax cuts that could come to a vote in the Senate today.
. . .
"I am continually astounded that some members of Congress don't understand how challenging it is to raise a family in today's economy," [Blanche] Lincoln protested. "While the cost of everything from milk to laundry detergent continues to rise, tax relief for low-income working families decreases."

These lucky duckies who Tom DeLay and Trent Lott -- two men who never saw a millionaire's loophole they didn't fight to preserve -- saw fit to confiscate wages from? They're the millions of Americans who work full-time for minimum wage. $5.15 an hour. They're the folks of whom Jesse Jackson once said,
They catch the early bus. They work every day. They raise other people's children. They work every day. They clean the streets. They work every day. They change the beds you slept in in these hotels last night and can't get a union contract. They work every day. They work in hospitals. I know they do. They wipe the bodies of those who are sick with fever and pain. They empty their bedpans. They clean out their commode. No job is beneath them, and yet when they get sick, they cannot lie in the bed they made up every day.

So after taking away overtime pay from the people who relied on it to pay for school supplies, the Republicans this week went for the kill. They took away the one piece of tax relief aimed at America's working poor. They raised taxes on the janitors, orderlies, and food workers who make the nation run. The Republican Party raised taxes on the hardest-working Americans, and they didn't bat an eyelash.

That's today's Republican Party in a nutshell, summed up by their own terrible deeds in one terrible month. That's why we fight.


*Because if George Bush has taught us anything, it's that canceling a tax cut is tantamount to hiking taxes.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 04:50 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Their shamelessness (none)
    is one more reason we need to kick them the hell out of Washington, D.C.  They are moral defectives.

    No man is justified in doing evil on the grounds of expediency.--Teddy Roosevelt

    by Leslie in CA on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 04:49:40 PM PDT

    •  The Rethug members of Congress... (none)
      don't seem to understand how difficult it is to put food on your family, unlike Dear Leader.

      No, the Sultan's demands are still not sufficiently rational; the only lasting peace is one based on reason and scientific principle -- Horatio Jackson

      by rgilly on Sun Sep 26, 2004 at 04:13:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It is astounding (none)
    how many of the people being harmed by this idiotic administration are voting for *.
    •  Astounding (none)
      Poor people don't vote in the same numbers as the rest of us. But there's an attempt to organize them this time around, at least in the swing.

      They better see at least some difference if Kerry is elected, or it may be the last time that they vote.

      •  Sorry guys but (none)
        The following is just me showing my exasperation with my fellow citizens.

        Regeristering new voters is great. The problem is how many will actually vote. I keep asking that question and of course there will be no definitive answer until Nov. 3. But people who have to be coaxed to register may not have the will to get to the polls.  

        I'm sure I'll get flamed for this, but sad to say that promoting liberal ideas with blogs and bulletin boards is just preaching to the choir.

        The US is not a progressive country and we haven't been able to convert the majority in all these years of trying.  Since Reagan (and more probably Nixon) we have become even more conservative.

        We say one thing when polled on our beliefs - insurance for all, helping the poor, etc. But when someone tells us that it will cause our taxes to go up or that we'll lose what they have, we start to fear the other guy, believe people deserve what they get and if you work hard you'll get ahead.

        Can't tell you how many times I've heard that insurance (medical care) is not a right, good housing is not a right, you're kids are your responsiblity and if you can't take care of them, too bad, you shouldn't have them if you can't afford them!

        Yes, it's short sighted, but there are enough people who think that way.

        Progresive ideas took hold for only a short period in our country's history - mainly from the turn of the century to the sixties. For the most part our philosophy has been you take care of yours and I'll take care of mine.

        Well I guess I've run my course for now. Night all and dream of a Kerry landslide. Maybe then my faith will be restored.

  •  stuff (none)
    We're currently conducting a double-blind experiement. First, we tested to see if a party that held power for a period of eight years that was marked by a certain prosperity, expanding employment, a record surplus, relative peace and virtually no American soldiers dying overseas could could lose an election. And the answer was YES! And now, we're testing again to see if the same party running against an administration whose four years in power has meant job loss, a record deficit and mounting American casualties in an unnecessary war can lose again. And the answer is YES!

    Anything else need be said?

    Posted by Marc Cooper

    •  fear (none)
      FDR said "we have nothing to fear but fear itself" during a depression while Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, and Franco made Bin Laden look like the "little guy" neocons said he was before 911.

      Now we have a fear monger in chief. Danger! 4 year old video of NY found in Pakistan! Danger! Cat Stevens on an airliner FLYING STRAIGHT AT AMERICA! Danger! Chatter!

      Al Quida is hiding under your bed. Vote for Bush or they will cut off your head.

      Keeping people too scared to think about wages, health care, retirement, and education is fundamental Republican strategy.

      •  Making them afraid (none)
        I heard it on NPR this morning.  A so-called "security mom": "Why does health care matter if you're in danger of being killed?  Who cares whether or not you have a job if you can't go because your building has been blown up by terrorists?"

        Will they ever realize that Bushco is creating a self-fulfilling prophecy for them?

  •  How can they do this? (none)
    How can they get away with this shit in an election year, no less?

    Oh, right, they own the fucking media.  This bill will be portrayed as a tax cut.  Black and white issues, remember?  Overall, it's a tax cut, and that's how the media will report it.

    "Bush says this tax cut is required to continue the economic improvement.  Kerry disagrees."  And that it.  No investigation.  No nuance.  A tax cutting Republican against a tax-and-spend Democrat.

    Bitch at any and every person that calls this bill a tax cut.  It's a tax shift.  Shifting the burden to the poor.  A reprehensible act.  

    God I hate the media, ignorant bitches.  I hate them more than the neo-cons.  The neo-cons are just doing what they have always planned to do.  The media is standing aside and letting them,  Fuck that, they're actually assisting them.

    Bah, I need a drink.  Or twenty.

  •  Why let them control the rhetoric? (none)
    Why do we always refer to Bush's TAX CUTS?  They are not tax cuts, they are TAX HIKES and they should always be referred to as such.  Every dollar cut in federal revenue will have to be paid back someday, and that can only be done by RAISING TAXES.

    If we constantly call them the BUSH TAX HIKES, which is what they are after all, the notion will work its way into the lexicon.

  •  Get Kerry Kerry Kerry!!!!! (none)
    Slam them John and be our hero - EMAIL THE KERRY CAMPAIGN NOW - they are listening!!!!

    If he gives a news conference about this tomorrow and makes it an issue on the Sunday shows it will be deadly to Bushco!

    DailyKos, my Anti-Drudge

    by joojooluv on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:11:43 PM PDT

    •  Here's the Problem (none)
      The Repubs innoculated themselves against this a couple months ago when the Senate Repubs put up a sham vote to raise the minimum wage when they knew Kerry was out campaigning and had enough of their members vote to end discussion that it would fall one vote short of going on for passage.  (Never mind the fact that it got 59 votes and didn't pass; it was to prevent a filibuster, and since everything in the Senate is vulnerable to a filibuster unless you have 60 votes, the fact that a simple majority were probably sincerly prepared to vote yes didn't matter, and was irrelevant to the rhetorical story that they wanted to tell--that Kerry was too busy campaigning to show up to work and supply the last needed vote to pass a minimum wage increase that would help low-income workers and thier families).  

      Now of course the Repubs had no intention of letting it pass; had Kerry returned in time for the vote, one of the Repubs who voted for it, like Specter, would have just dropped off the yes board and abstained or voted no.  But if Kerry pounces on this, it's the first thing the Repubs will come back at him with.

      This isn't, contrary to some of the naysayers around here at the time, Kerry's fault.  Had he shown up because of the unconfirmed threat of the vote, they would have postponed it, and used the threat again to keep him off the campaign trail in sitting in Washington DC.  So he had to go ahead and keep campaigning.  But that is one of the reasons it's so damn hard for a Senator to win a nomination or the presidency, because they are incredibly vulnerable to being screwed on procedural issues, easily misunderstood votes, the necessity of compromise, etc.

      It's unconcionable, but I have to hand it to the Repubs on a tactical level, they played this one well.  

  •  Thugs Are (4.00)
    Greedy and short-sighted. They are always looking for the short-term score and never for long term stability. When (not if) the worm turns there will be shit to pay. These are the kind of people the Russian peasants turned out of their homes in 1917 - and it was deserved.

    Winston, you're drunk!" "Madam, you are ugly - and in the morning I shall be sober."

    by dpc on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:13:39 PM PDT

    •  I'm glad you see that (none)
      If you watch the media closely its very clear they view evil tyrannies like  the russian Czars and the Shah of Iran as the legitimate tyrants of their people and even act as if their rule was "the good old days". Never seeming to understand why millions would rise up, risk life and livelihood and a future of uncertainty just for a shot at a fair society.

      "I trust God speaks through me. Without that, I couldn't do my job." - pRresident Bush | My other Drunken ravings

      by cdreid on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:43:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  So... (none)
      who exactly will be up against the wall when the "American Experiment" fails?

      If it is how you envision, it will be the petite bourgeoisie. The American Kulaks.

      We live in interesting times, no?

      No, the Sultan's demands are still not sufficiently rational; the only lasting peace is one based on reason and scientific principle -- Horatio Jackson

      by rgilly on Sun Sep 26, 2004 at 04:37:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Well, (none)
    i have to "clam down" now. i just emailed the Kerry campaign about it. Actually Edwards would be ideal to roast these GOP marshmellows.

    DailyKos, my Anti-Drudge

    by joojooluv on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:18:37 PM PDT

  •  Just another day in Amerika... (3.50)
    Under the rule of the Amerikan Taliban, The party of Baal and Mammon.

    Peace in a world free of Religion, Peace in a world where everyone gets Heaven... -- Toni Halliday

    by Wintermute on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:20:04 PM PDT

  •  Compassion + Conservatism (none)
    are mutually exclusive as a political platform.

    I voted for GWB in 2000 because of, among other things, "compassionate conservativism." It was such a radical idea that I felt it just might work. Well, I'm glad that experiement is over and Bush has proved, not that it didn't work, but that it is not possible.

    Some Catholics have challenged my assertion and suggested that many well meaning conservatives exhibit compassion and volunteer and give money to organizations, etc. That, to me, compounds the heartlessness: to think that the tens of millions of need should live at the whims of generosity of compassionate conservatives to address all their life needs is unbelievable. I ask them, are you telling me that you'll support all these people who need help 24/7/365? On a basic simple level, what happens then when you go on vacation? or when you fall on hard times?

    We all know about REpublican arch-conservative politicians and no one believes that Tom Delay, Trent Lott, John Ashcroft, Saxby Chambliss, Dick Cheney, George Bush, etc actually care about the needy: what I find amazing is that many compassionate conservatives "so-called," among the ranks of the regular people, willing delude themselves that their Republican leaders care. That's tantamount to abandonment of the poor and working class.

    Anyway, I hope we can get the word out about these compassionate conservative Tom Delays and Dick Cheneys and their warm, fuzzy and snuggly policies regarding the poor and working class.

    •  Well you know the funny thing is (none)
      that the EIYC was Jack Kemp's udea.  He was a positive guy.  He saw it as lowering the marginal rate on work for poor people.  Course if there's no welfare, then you don't need a carrot.
  •  What a two face! (none)
    Bush and his cronies are TWO FACED - pure and simple.

  •  And now this (none)
    from The American Street

    With the conference board reporting that the "recovery" is over Bush has set two new economic records. Both the weakest and the shortest recovery from a recession since records have been kept. Bet a dollar it doesn't make the Sunday talks. Takers?

    "If I pay a man enough money to buy my car, he'll buy my car." Henry Ford

    by johnmorris on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:25:18 PM PDT

    •  that's a bit of spin (none)
      Here's the press release on the Conference Board's website, which says
      The leading index fell again in August, the third consecutive decline, and the weakness in the last three months has become more widespread. However, these declines in the leading index have not been long enough nor deep enough to signal an end to the upward trend in the leading index underway since March 2003.

      While I realize bad economic news is bad for Shrub&Co., I refuse to buy into the idea that spreading bad news that's spun is a good way to help Kerry. Troll me if you must.

      •  I do not recall (none)
        ever trolling anybody. My understanding of the standards of the conference board was exactly what was reported by ACT and repeated on the american street. That the board has chosen to alter their opinion based on "3 of the 10 indicators", two of which have little to do with actual growth, is, of itself, spin. In my opinion the "recovery" we're talking about is largely fictional. The much touted employment increases have yet to match the growth in the work eligible population and weekly wages have continued to fall. I am not impressed, in the light of those statistics, with an increase in "the money supply".

        "If I pay a man enough money to buy my car, he'll buy my car." Henry Ford

        by johnmorris on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 08:11:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I still think it's spin (none)
          I'm not touting the recovery, it's been obvious from it's "beginning" that it was jobless and a joke to working-class people.

          But pronouncements like this aren't truley defensable. There's enough real meat out there on the economy that numbers like this, which are a small enough decline to adjust flat over time, seem like they set the argument up for failure.  Hitting on outsourcing, on the kinds of jobs this so-called recovery are creating, on tax loop holes, on the impact of the defecit, the problems with uncontrolled health-care costs are all legitimate.

          I would stand on a soap-box that supports itself, and I firmly believe that that soap-box should be able to withstand the scrutiny of fiscal conservatives, for I believe there are a lot of them out there looking for an alternative to the borrow-and-spend policies of the Bush Administration.

          •  Here's what I'm saying (none)
            Up until this report, the conference board has always reported that three consecutive months of downward movement were a trend. Had this report been issued in the Clinton administration, there would have been no caviat and the club for growth would have been shouting from the roof tops that the next depression was just around the corner. "Fiscal conservatives" have certainly been betrayed by the modern republican party. They do not, however, fall onto my side of the argument. I am a labor democrat, proud to espouse the redistribution of wealth both because I believe it to be a moral position and because it has proven, historically, to provide a healthier economy by every measure. I think using the generaly accepted definition of "zero or negative" growth, ie 3 consecutive months of declining indicators, is justified. I don't think we win arguments by attempting to appear reasonable to people who have proven themselves incapable of managing the day to day business of government.

            "If I pay a man enough money to buy my car, he'll buy my car." Henry Ford

            by johnmorris on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 09:33:32 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Look (none)
            I'm having a good time with this conversation and am not nearly as curmudgeonly as I sound but I have to get up early to help with my birthday party tomorrow so I'll check back around 6 or 7. Thanks for the chat:-)

            "If I pay a man enough money to buy my car, he'll buy my car." Henry Ford

            by johnmorris on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 09:38:04 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I was tired last night (none)
              and having trouble articulating my concern well; It's the headline "weakest recovery is also the shortest."

              First, it says "recovery over" loud and clear, and as much as I want Bush to be privitized, a real recession -- if we every really came out of the one we were in -- is harsh.

              Secondly, I think the headline-writer is spinning the economic terms, which are highly defined, into street talk,which morphs to what people want it to mean, so ACT is spinning its meaning into an argument that doesn't stand up unde scrutiny yet. I'm not sure where the AP story used to source the idea is in the  original post, but here's an AP story from Friday's Houston Chronicle:

              The index of leading U.S. economic indicators fell for a third consecutive month in August, the longest streak since early 2003.

              The decline, released Thursday by the New York-based Conference Board suggests slower growth amid rising oil prices.

              "There is concern about weak consumption and the pace of wage and salary increases," said Ken Goldstein, an economist at the Conference Board, a private research group. "Consumers worry about their wages and salaries, which could limit spending."

              The 0.3 percent decline in the gauge of how the world's largest economy will perform over the next three to six months matches the July drop. Economists forecast a 0.2 percent decline in the leading index for August

              Oil prices reached a record in August and job growth slowed from earlier this year, restraining incomes, consumer confidence and the appetite to spend.

              And a 9/24 AP story from the Northwest (Miami?) Herald

              A closely watched gauge of future business activity fell in August for a third consecutive month, evidence that companies and consumers continue to navigate an uncertain economic climate.

              Meanwhile, more Americans filed new claims for unemployment last week after the hurricanes that hit Florida.

              The Conference Board said Thursday its Composite Index of Leading Economic Indicators fell 0.3 percent in August to 115.7, following a decline of 0.3 percent in July.

              Economists said the August report confirms a slackening in the recovery dating back to the spring. Three consecutive months of a decline in the index are considered to mean the economy is weakening.

              Then there's this editorial in the Boston Globe where Oliphant thrashes the economies performance, but he doesn't bother to mention these sliding numbers (given, it was likely written on the same day these numbers came out, but he's smart enough to know they were coming out and to have checked them).

              An economy, to a great extent, functions because people believe in it. Economists tell me that theirs is the study of human behavior. To spin these numbers into "recession" is irresponsible; it's the kind of thing that could trigger one.

              •  Me too (none)
                tired that is. I doubt we're that far apart. I didn't read it as saying a recession was upon us but that the "recovery", meaning an up trend in economic activity, was no longer in the picture. What recovery there was was pretty flat on its best day. Since Gerald Ford's "Whip Inflation Now" campaign I have been sceptical of the ability of either the media or our political leaders to have much effect on the psychological state of the economy. I get around some and I am in Dallas, Cheney's real home town, and I do not come across anybody who believes in the, recently touted, Bush Boom.

                "If I pay a man enough money to buy my car, he'll buy my car." Henry Ford

                by johnmorris on Sun Sep 26, 2004 at 06:42:57 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Oh ho, this is HUGE....a MUST READ (3.50)
    [from the Kerry blog...]


    Rumours of a link between the US first family and the Nazi war machine have circulated for decades. Now the Guardian can reveal how repercussions of events that culminated in action under the Trading with the Enemy Act are still being felt by today's president

    Ben Aris in Berlin and Duncan Campbell in Washington
    Saturday September 25, 2004

    George Bush's grandfather, the late US senator Prescott Bush, was a director and shareholder of companies that profited from their involvement with the financial backers of Nazi Germany.

    The Guardian has obtained confirmation from newly discovered files in the US National Archives that a firm of which Prescott Bush was a director was involved with the financial architects of Nazism.

    His business dealings, which continued until his company's assets were seized in 1942 under the Trading with the Enemy Act, has led more than 60 years later to a civil action for damages being brought in Germany against the Bush family by two former slave labourers at Auschwitz and to a hum of pre-election controversy.

    The evidence has also prompted one former US Nazi war crimes prosecutor to argue that the late senator's action should have been grounds for prosecution for giving aid and comfort to the enemy.,12271,1312540,00.html

    Rest of this long detailed article is at the above URL.

    Peace in a world free of Religion, Peace in a world where everyone gets Heaven... -- Toni Halliday

    by Wintermute on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:26:49 PM PDT

    •  The worst part of this (none)
      is that the company Bush Sr. Sr. (supersr?) was the Presidnet of (if in name only) is being sued by Auschwitz survivor's famiiies basically for back other words, our President's GRANDFATHER made his fortune in part by using concentration camp slave labor.  This is the fortune which the Bushs used to gain political prominence in the next 2 generations.  

      "That government of, by, and for the people shall not perish from the Earth."

      by TheGryphon on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:29:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Post this in a diary, please! (none)
  •  Yesterday's Andrew Sullivan Editorial (none)
    I was reading an editorial in the conservative New York Sun yesterday.  I believe it was from Andrew Sullivan.  I'm paraphrasing but he said something about Liberals voting against their moral interests in favor of their own personal interests. Sullivan's example was education.  

    1. His logic dictates that I find my child's education more important than stopping a performance artist from burning the flag 3,000 miles away.  

    2. That I care more about my child's education than forcing everyone to recite the pledge, even the <.01% who refuse to for moral reasons.

    He's right.

    1. Sullivan assumes that every American shares conservative moral values.  It's easy to win arguments when the parametersof your argument aren't based in the truth.

    2. He presents a choice:

    A. Democrats should vote against for their personal interests to support their moral interests (which is assumed that they share).  

    B. Poor republicans should vote against their economic interests to support their moral interests.

    C. Rich republicans have a duty to vote for their economic and moral interests.

    Is anyone surprised that the only true winners are the rich republicans?

    •  The so-called conservatives have moral values? (none)
      Who knew.  

      "Reality" is the only word in the English language that should always be used in quotes.

      by LionelEHutz on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:36:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Repeat after me... (none)
      ...Andrew Sullivan is a selfish, greedy, bag o' crap.
    •  It all depends... (4.00)
      On how you define "moral interests".  And "personal interests".  Presumably he means economic interests by the latter.

      But this is a false dichotomy.  It is in our long term economic interests (and arguably medium and short term as well) to educate our children, to work for a cleaner environment, to promote fairness and opportunity for all.  It is not in our economic interest to reward greed above respect for the law, inherited wealth above work, etc. etc.

      Peace in a world free of Religion, Peace in a world where everyone gets Heaven... -- Toni Halliday

      by Wintermute on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:44:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Note that Don Nickles' (none)
    defense entirely ignores the point. He says that the EITC is riddled with fraud and abuse, so instead of even trying to help people, he implies, we should subsidize corporations.

    "I'm not saying that John Kerry has all the answers, but Bush has none, and he's cheating off of Dick Cheney's paper."-Bill Maher

    by theprogressivemiddle on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 05:31:05 PM PDT

  •  speaking of janitors and maids (none)
    Does anyone have any info on the hotel workers strike in San Francisco?  I googled and all I found was a story from a week ago.
  •  Government's Purpose is to Help People (none)
    They literally don't understand that.  The People can do more together than a person, but there has to be direction and purpose.  Government is there to do what a person cannot -- in most cases, to help people who need help, in any of a million small ways, from defending the country to standardizing food purity to keeping corporations from polluting and overcharging to negotiating with foreign countries to creating and maintaining a legal system to providing teachers to educate children to whatever.

    Best example that leaps to mind is Grover Norquist, who simply doesn't understand that taxation is your membership fee in the community, and it's scaled on ability to pay.  Taxes go to all the things that keep society functioning.  I don't think he's ever considered how stupid he'll look at the gates of Hell if he dies in a fire that couldn't be put out because the fire protection network is underfunded, or of botulism from food that couldn't be inspected because the regs weren't being enforced, or of a mugging that could've been prevented if we had more cops.

    Government is there for the sake of the powerless, not the powerful.  What gets me is why, these days, the powerful try to stifle it, when it is in their best interest to promote it.

    •  Powerful Stifle (none)

      The powerful stifle because they're too short-sighted and ignorant to consider two simple situations. First, that they could someday be powerless and forced to seek the aid of the government. Second, that someone who's currently powerless could ever do anything to benefit them. If they merely considered these two circumstances, it would become clear that its in their long-term best interests to allow government to do its best to help the less fortunate while leaving the more fortunate to help themselves.

      CNN - about as "trusted" as a compass in an active MRI machine.

      by RHunter on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 06:12:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  This used to be accepted orthodoxy (none)
      because the alternative (letting corporation rule society) had been tried to disastrous effect.  However, after LBJ, the collective consciousness of Americans had forgotten the lessons of the gilded age, and corporations were no longer seen as predatory entities on the public body.  Republicans have recast the debate with corporations as "the engine of economic and jobs growth" and government is now the problem, not the solution.

      To turn this around requires re-villification of our corporate overlords, and reminding people of the power of effective government to make their lives better (examples:  Rural electrification, Social security, voting rights, worker safety rights, ADA, Family/Medical leave act etc., all passed into law over the objections of "pro-business" republicans.)

      Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh and the greatness which does not bow before children. - Khalil Gibran

      by PBJ Diddy on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 06:14:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  debate 2000 (none)
    So C-span is reairing the first 2000 debate between Bush and Gore.  Gore got his ass handed to him.  How does Kerry beat such a charismatic debater?
    •  So many false promises (none)
      I wish we could require people to review the promises in the 2000 debates and compare them to the reality of 2004.
      And the irony of Bush accusing Gore of being prone to overspending and running up debt!
      •  So much has changed (none)
        And the irony of Bush accusing Gore of being prone to overspending and running up debt!

        Yes.  Things are so different now. 

        The thing that struck me was the way Gore somehow felt like he should take the high road by letting Bush's attacks on him go totally unanswered.  That was a very big mistake.  No more mister nice guy for us. 

        I think Bush understands this and that is why this time around his people are trying to get some sort of rules that will somehow make it impossible for Kerry to really fight back.  It is not going to happen, I just hope that does not mean that the debates are not going to  happen.

  •  Excuse me... (none)
    The Republican Party raised taxes on the hardest-working Americans, and they didn't bat an eyelash.

    The Democrats ROLLED OVER on this one.  Totally.  And honestly the prevailing sentiment on the comments boards and diaries that day was "well this wasn't such a bad thing, it would distract from the prevailing national security focus".  I personally thought that was a little insane, but that's just me.

    But now, as has been the case so many times over the last four years, we see that the "not so bad" thing our party helped pass is actually pretty fucking horrible.  I mean are we allowed to talk about this given that are own worthless party leadership aided and abetted its passage?

    George W. Bush: It's the Morning After in America

    by ChicagoDem on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 07:13:07 PM PDT

  •  Democrats and their bad PR (none)
    as we have noted repeatedly, the GOP does great PR. they stick to one point and hammer and hammer away. meanwhile, we talk about the environemnt, we talk about supreme court, we talk about tax cuts, poverty, higher education, multilateral foreign policy, prescription drugs, blah blah. is it any wonder why most Americans have no grasp of what makes Democrats different from Republicans?? in 2002, the GOP hammered at HOmeland Security and how Democrats opposed the dept due to the union bosses (yes, a pack of lies, but it worked). i have no idea why in 2004, Democrats have not hammered at the OT vote. instead, they'll talk about every single issue under the sun, instead of just putting the choices starkly to the American people. if you polled folks, i bet only 10% or less of Americans are even aware of the overtime provisions. kerry will mention it once in awhile, along with Edwards, but it's never ever hammered as a mantra as like the GOP did with HOmeland Security  (or with Kerry's "i voted for the $87 billion" remark). until we learn the art of succinct and consistent propaganda, the differences will always be muddled.
  •  ...why we fight, indeed. (4.00)
    I don't usually post, and this little diatribe is not in response to any comment in particular. But, since the thread pertains to working Americans, I feel compelled to relate a couple of my experiences today, canvasing in Kitsap County, WA: Bremerton to be exact.

    Home to a naval base, and a whole lot of housing projects.

    I've been working with NARAL on Women Vote Project, which not only has an aim to get low income women out to vote, but has a great follow-up aspect which provides them transportation to the polls, and even has a plan to get them involved in the political process as lobbyists in Olympia (our capitol).

    In a vast, low-income housing development, I registered 'April', a single mother just out of the US Navy. Her son Anthony was wrapped in a blanket on the pull out couch, which was the only item in the bare apartment, outside of a TV. April asked gingerly, "Have any of my neighbors done this?"


    I registered 'Stephanie' a young woman with a house full of nieces and nephews (probably 8 of them) in a one bedroom apartment: all colors, all ages. Not only did she sign up enthusiastically, but called over her finance to do the same. In the meantime, one of the nieces asked, "What's going on, I see all this STUFF on tv?".

    These are the working and working-poor Americans that Shrub and his cronies in the "have" club are trying to short-change and silence by their tax-code-cronyism.

    This must be stopped.

  •  Schwarzenegger vetoed minimum wage (none)
    Last week, Arnold vetoed a minimum wage increase passed by the California state legislature (AB 2832).

    Now that Schwarzenegger is the poster boy for the GOP from his acting performance at the RNC, it might be a little harder to hide that big business owns him.

  •  What did they do to the janitors? (none)
    They took away the one piece of tax relief aimed at America's working poor.

    I have re-read your article over at least 3 times and scanned the comments and I still have no idea what piece of tax relief has been taken from America's working poor.

    •  In the previous "tax cuts" (none)
      some of the provisions applied to people earning around the minimum wage, (I don't have the exact numbers) meaning they would get refunds for witholding taxes above the withholding. These were stripped from the bill.

      "If I pay a man enough money to buy my car, he'll buy my car." Henry Ford

      by johnmorris on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 08:15:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Language Please . . . (none)
    A tax cut that coexists with a deficit is by definition not a tax cut.

    It is a tax shift from those who pay taxes now to those who pay taxes later.

    There is no free lunch, pay now, or pay later - that is the simple reality, and we on the left should never allow those on the right to get away with claiming they have cut taxes.

    Quite simply they have only raised the tax burden five years from now.

    And for what?

    If you can't create jobs with a $5 billion deficit, and 1.5% interest rates - you never will.

    They've had their chance, they have not led, they go.

    "Freedom is Everyday Low Prices" Graffiti 2003, Anonymous

    My newsgroup.

    by dbratl on Sat Sep 25, 2004 at 08:10:07 PM PDT

    New line for John:  "George Bush would like you to believe that I want to raise taxes.  The Kerry plan is to provide health care for millions of working Americans by canceling the Bush tax cut on the wealthiest 2 percent of wage earners.  The Bush plan is to run up record deficits, cut taxes for the wealthiest Americans, and raise taxes on the poorest Americans."
  •  I don't think we should cut taxes (none)
    for anyone. I agreed with Howard Dean's position. Let's get rid of all of the Bush tax cuts and go back to the rates we had in Clinton's last year. With the massive budget deficit these aren't really tax cuts.  They are simply tax deferments. My generation is going to have pay these taxes plus interest later on down the road.

    With the Clinton tax rates as our baseline, we should then RAISE taxes on the rich, close corporate loopholes that allow so many profitable Fortune 500 corporations to pay zero income tax, and implement John Kerry's health care plan to get more people insured and to bring down health care costs.  After that we could raise the EITC and boost the child tax credit.

    If we're gonna fund this damn war, the rich need to start paying their fair share. I know it would be political suicide for Kerry to say he's gonna raise taxes on the middle class, but at some point he may have to do it. The middle class only got a tax cut of a few hundred bucks anyway, and yet they lost so much due to Bush's weak economy and the skyrocketing costs of health care. I think people would accept higher taxes (and let's face it, taxes weren't very burdensome under Clinton) in return for less national debt, cheaper health care, and a better economy.

  •  Could Kerry quote Jackson (none)
    Without saying it's a Jackson quote in the debates? Or do you think the media would recognize it. The only reason I ask is because of the Jesse Jackson scandal, when was that last year or the year before? Think its still relevent?

    I work for minimum wage, every day, so that really touched me personally.

    He who lives in the present, has no knowledge of the past nor vision for the future.

    by DeanDemocrat on Sun Sep 26, 2004 at 01:15:46 AM PDT

  •  terrific post trapper (none)
    I love the frame of foregone wages and tax cuts as pay cuts and tax hikes -- sauce for the goose!

    I think these points can can be forged into a theme: Bush declares war on American workers and families, as in:

    "While Bush has shown complete incompetence in fighting the war in Iraq, he has been deadly effective in fighting a war against American workers and families. He has in fact raised their taxes. He has cut their pay. He has conspired with corporate polluters to poison their air and water. He has destabilized Medicare. And he has placed a burdensome debt on their children, that they will paying off long after he is off golfing with his wealthy friends.

    Iraq was the wrong war at the wrong time. Bush's war against American workers and families is the wrong war at any time. Tell George Bush it's time to stop making war on America."

    "Scrutinize the bill, it is you who must pay it...You must take over the leadership." - Brecht

    by pedestrian xing on Sun Sep 26, 2004 at 02:35:23 PM PDT

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