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Why aren't we Democrats fighting the estate tax repeal harder?  It is completely unjust to destroy the estate tax.  Paris Hilton didn't earn that money.  Why the fuck do Democrats think they have an obligation to make like nicer for her?  In the meantime, people who have to pay medical bills can't declare bankruptcy as easily, largely because of mbna dems like Joe Biden.  

People complain that Haley Barbour of Mississippi is cutting the state budget on persciption meds, but they ignore that Democratic Governors of Tennessee are and Michigan are doing the same. Furthermore the estate tax repeal wouldn't pass without the complicity of Shumer, Biden, Lieberman and other dems.

It is stupid to allow the estate tax to die given our budget deficit that has been generated by the war.  The loss of this revenue will create at least  a trillion dollars in debt.  According to William Grieder

At this moment, Senate Democrats are preparing to take a dive on the issue they have righteously hammered for four years--repeal of the estate tax--and they intend to call this "victory." The Dems want to negotiate a "compromise" with Senate Republicans that will restore the inheritance tax while reducing the rate at which estates are taxed and exempting many more families who are rich but not extremely rich. Yet the outlines of what Democrats are pursuing looks like a monstrous giveaway. It would yield roughly $420 billion in tax relief for the very wealthiest families. Indeed, the bipartisan bargaining may wind up producing far greater revenue losses. When wobbly-kneed Democrats set out to negotiate with hard-nosed Republicans on taxes, the Republic is very likely the loser.

This cave-in would make a joke of Democrats' fervent demands for fiscal responsibility and balanced budgets. Forget all their rants about growing income inequality and shameful Republican tax cuts for the rich. The "reform" proposal circulating among Dems would surrender 55 percent of the estate-tax revenue that would otherwise be gained by the government. This windfall would go to something like 160,000 families and leave a huge hole in the federal tax base. Some victory.

The maneuvering illustrates, once again, the defeatist mentality of the party establishment. Always eager to avoid a fight on matters of conviction, the Dems' one inflexible principle is incumbent self-protection. Senate minority leader Harry Reid wants to get the estate-tax issue settled before next year's elections so the GOP can't use it to club two or three vulnerable Democrats as "tax and spend liberals." So Reid deputized Charles Schumer of New York to lead the negotiations with Senate Republicans. Schumer chairs the Democrats' Senate campaign committee and is thus the guy who makes nice to the wealthy contributors. They are the only people who pay this tax.

Oddly enough, though they are in the minority, Senate Democrats should have the high ground on this issue. If they unite to block any further action by Republicans, the original estate tax will automatically come back into full effect in 2011. Bush's massive tax-cutting bill in 2001 dramatized this long-established provision as the "death tax" and further confused the public about the impact repeal would have on government programs. Bush's too-cute concoction provided that the estate tax was to be slowly reduced but not repealed in full until 2010. To conceal the true long-term revenue losses--approaching $1 trillion--the legislation was then designed to expire in 2011. So essentially the repeal has to be enacted again to become permanent. The House Republicans have already done so.

What are the Dems thinking?  Who the hell do they serve anyway?  They appear serve no one but the children of the invester class.  Don't we have a republican party for that? Meanwhile they are perfectly willing to scare up more dead meat for the war, particularly if it comes from the ranks of the working class.   Pelosi's so-called time table to leave Iraq was really a call for more troops.

Originally posted to NoAlternative on Sat Jul 02, 2005 at 11:03 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Ummmmm (none)
    I think Clinton democrats serve the investor class.  I don't think Dean democrats do.  (Uh-oh - guess I'm a divider not a uniter today).

    However, I do think that this is where we become hypocritical and why a beltway Dem seems to be, shall we say, less inspiring to the voting base.  We like to make noise when we are pushing legislation that won't have an incredible effect on our lives but suddently go into a state of limpness when we have to push through something that might have a direct impact on us.

    Why did all those Senators back Bush's Iraq?  Because secretly they believed in Reagan's "trickle down" theory, especially if they're one of the ones doing the trickling.  Hey, why was Clinton in Kennebunkport last week again?

    •  I agree, but since kossacks are the deaniacs (none)
      why is there not a bigger stink being raised?

      Stop the war! Draft Bush voters!

      by NoAlternative on Sat Jul 02, 2005 at 11:41:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Just a thought (4.00)
      There are many Americans today who invest on the side of their normal jobs.  They are different from the big Republican investment banker types.  I suggest that we gear a message to those small investors who might be tempted to vote Republican (and probably did in November).  And frankly, who can blame the small investor?  Most are not greedy, selfish, evil people.  They're typical working folks who want to try and save up some money so that they can take that dream vacation they've always wanted, or have a spectacular wedding ceremony, or save up so that they can afford their dream house, or save up so that they can enjoy retirement.  With inflation these days, pensions and social security might not be enough. I say that we should use traditional Democratic messaging of standing up for the little guy to reach out to these voters (who are probably the remaining Republicans in our urban areas and make up a bulk of young Republican voters).  This is why I am hopeful for guys like Elliot Spitzer.  Mind you, I am completely AGAINST Dubya's idiotic plan for social security "reform" but lots of people are investing these days and if more continue and we lose these voters to the GOP, we're going to continue losing.  We need a message and a plan that appeals to these voters.  We should frame this ideal as the small investor, the little guy, the average American who needs to be protected from big corporations and other hucksters who may want to cheat him out of his hard earned cash.  
      •  I think your ideas (none)
        could be developed and would make for interesting policy.  If you would, perhaps you could form these thoughts into a diary and get some input from others on the forum.  I agree with you.  More and more people are going to need to invest - just to maintain a certain level of "inclusiveness" in the society.  The question is, how do you do this without breaking up social security and thereby turning it a into a "social risk" while at the same time, help individuals learn to make their own dollars grow?  Should there be a new, program, government backed but locally sponsored that people can learn to invest through?  I have some problems with this idea because some local programs are easily exploited and monies are often ill-managed.  

        I guess I want people to start taking an interest in their money but at the same time, I don't want anyone dipping into the guaranteed monies of social security.

        •  Thanks! (none)
          Well I'm not sure if we need government training programs to inform people of the riskiness of the market.  Of course, some people live fulltime off investing in the market.  It's not manual labor but it's not hard work.  I would say that we not say that investing will make you rich but instead say that we will be the ones who look out for your economic interests as well as quality of life.  Social Security is still a fall back.  If you lose all of your money in a bad stock investment or a bad real estate investment, you won't starve as a senior.  You'll still have food, shelter, healthcare (we hope), you just won't live as well as you had hoped.  In terms of policy, fighting white collar corporate crime is the strongest meme we have and is actually something where folks would beleive us.  I think the average Joe out there thinks of us Democrats as ready to support any black or hispanic street gang member and that makes him but he also thinks of a Democrat as someone willing to fry some crooked Wall Street executive.  But I will do a diary on this and other topics.
    •  we are uniters - we are uniting the underlings (none)
      against the overlords.  although...

      IF Dems stand for anything, THEN the thugs will call them names, THEN then middle will be scared, THEN we'll lose.  

      Of course, about all Dems have done in 25 years is lose, BUT, it ain't cuz the milquetoasts "leaders" only excel at staying in charge and living large, Dems lose cuz of protestors and cuz of men kissing men and cuz of naral and cuz of class warfare ... just ask the milqutoasts who are living large !!

      and in '06 and '08 we'll have some last minute "grassroots" campaigns, fired up in August, to raise hundreds of millions that the milquetoasts will blow trying not to lose.


      Grassroots Organizing Should Be for The Community, By The Community - NOT for "Leaders"

      by rmdewey on Sat Jul 02, 2005 at 11:53:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Because The Dems have decided (none)
    He who proposes ANY tax increase or opposes any tax cut first loses.

    From the Social sucurity Debate to the deficit this is the silly little truth.

    The reason I got involved with Dean was because he said the ENTIRE Bush taxcut should be repealed but it didn't take long before all the others said "except the middle class".


    by ctkeith on Sat Jul 02, 2005 at 11:48:06 AM PDT

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