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Here's some encouraging evidence that this message has been been heard by Democrats.
SANDWICH, Ill. — On Wednesday morning, as his tinted black bus pulled into Randy Hultgren’s congressional district, President Obama told residents that Republicans like Hultgren must be willing to raise taxes to reduce the deficit.

A few hours and 90 miles away, Hultgren's own constituents had picked up the message, repeatedly hectoring the freshman congressman at a town hall meeting to raise taxes on the wealthy and corporations.

"We have clear information that . . . tax cuts, especially to the super rich, has not increased any more jobs," one man told him. "I want to know under what conditions you would be willing to consider increasing taxes, especially on those who can afford it?"

I just have one question for you tonight," said another. "Did you sign Grover Norquist’s pledge to never raise taxes?"—referring to the promise that has been signed by most congressional Republicans, including Hultgren.

"Don't you have the confidence in your own ability in Congress to make up your own mind? You need Grover Norquist to tell you?" the man continued.

It is a scene that has been repeated at town hall meetings across the country this August as Democrats make a concerted effort to use this month’s congressional recess to change a national narrative on taxes.

Okay, so the question is, is this a grassroots, bubbling up kind of thing, or have establishment Democrats really internalized public opinion on this issue? Maybe a little of both, and that's where the encouraging part comes in.

Democrats dubbed their efforts "Accountability August," targeting vulnerable Republicans through radio ads, billboards and phone banks in an effort to convince voters that the GOP wants to save tax breaks for millionaires and subsidies for oil companies at the expense of Medicare.

But a spokesman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee insisted that the town hall reaction has not been coordinated. "People are responding because they are outraged about the priorities," said Jesse Ferguson, DCCC spokesman. "The president and congressional leadership have made sure that those are well-known. But the response is stemming from constituents."

So they are paying attention. Now they need to act. The grassroots has done its part, sending the message. So now elected Democrats have to do theirs, and fight for real "shared sacrifice."

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 09:36 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

    •  Just remember… (4+ / 0-)

      …we can either take 50% away from the bottom 50% or we can take 2% away from the top 2% to achieve the same goals and in Bizzarogopland only the first option is "fair".

      Just remember no one who earned millions or billions of dollars ever did so without thousands of poorer people delivering their product or service to millions of poorer people buying it.

      Teh stoopidTM, it hurts. Buy smart, union-printed, USA-made, signs, stickers, swag for everyone:

      by DemSign on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:10:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Good job, rooster. The sun came up. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Major Tom, Southside, seabos84

    It's a little sad that you can't report this story without trying to take credit for it.

    Art is the handmaid of human good.

    by joe from Lowell on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 09:39:54 AM PDT

  •  We shouldn't even have "shared sacrifice" (23+ / 0-)

    What caused this situation? Unpaid for wars, tax cuts, and deregulation.

    The idea that we will keep the wars, tax cuts, and deregulation going and balance the budget on programs and people who did nothing to contribute to this is not shared sacrifice. It's punishing the innocent.

    If we had accountability we would deal with this situation by going after those who caused it. We would end the wars, tax cuts, and tax loopholes and have massive stimulus spending.

    Anything less than that is just another contribution to the class warfare against the middle/working class and the poor.

    •  Most of us got tax cuts. (0+ / 0-)

      If Obama and the Democrats were not willing to raise taxes on the middle and lower classes they would have been free to let the tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires expire.

      Democrats build better communities.

      by NCJim on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:14:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  At some point, these Democrats, if they're (19+ / 0-)

    really Democrats, are going to have to stand up in public and tell the truth. We need to straighten out our tax situation, and get the people who've benefitted the most from our society to pay their fair share.
    If Democrats won't do it, then they're not really Democrats in my opinion.

    ...and dropping a bar bell he points to the sky, saying "The sun's not yellow-it's CHICKEN!"

    by porchdog1961 on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 09:55:58 AM PDT

  •  Seriously, this polls overwhelmingly popular (12+ / 0-)

    It's about @#$%in time that popular Democratic ideas gain traction, since the repubs are constantly successful with unpopular ideas., e.g. extending the bush tax cuts for the wealthy.

    Umm, that's PRESIDENT Obama and SENATOR Franken, mr. o'reilly.

    by filby on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 09:57:17 AM PDT

  •  Don't Let Norquist Run Our Country (14+ / 0-)

    I think this would be a useful ongoing angle--and slogan..

  •  it is not increasing taxes (10+ / 0-)

    it is getting the rich to pay their fair share of taxes.  Big difference.

    •  Letting all the Bush cuts expire (8+ / 0-)

      along with the Obama cuts, would raise everyone's taxes, though by relatively small amounts.

      Indeed, because simply letting the cuts expire for the rich doesn't generate the needed revenue. Letting all the cuts expire does.

      The people seem to understand this, and understand that it's okay if their taxes go up. We were't over-taxed in the Clinton era.

      Now we need to cure politicians of their fear of raising taxes on ordinary people when those same people are practically begging them to do so.

      Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

      by Robobagpiper on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:08:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  people need to let go of the bush tax cuts (3+ / 0-)

        and focus on getting the rich to pay their fair share of taxes.  The increase from letting the bush tax cuts expire is no where near what the rich should pay, it should be closer to what they paid at the beginning of reagan's term, ~50%.  

        •  The Bush tax cuts go away with inaction (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Minnesota Deb

          Any additional tax increases on top earners requires a very friendly Congress.

          As such, the only thing needed to get revenues in line, by letting both the Bush tax cuts and the Obama payroll tax cut to expire is to stiffen the spines of Dems to make sure it actually happens this time.

          We can advocate for adding more brackets at higher tax rates to restore the pre-Reagan structure all we want, but the legislative threshold for actually achieving it is much higher.

          Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

          by Robobagpiper on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:18:54 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  good luck with that game with the bush tax cuts (0+ / 0-)

            by focusing directly on the rich not paying their fair share they have lost most of their leverage in trying to say it would place a burden on working families (even it only really adds less that $1000 to working families vs $100k+ for the rich)

            •  You're the one pushing the approach that (0+ / 0-)

              would require affirmative legislation, and you're telling me good luck? I think you overestimate your chances.

              The most likely reality is that DC remains tonedeaf and there are no revenue increases at all. But expiration is vastly more likely than getting a new bill with only taxes on top earners through a filibuster.

              Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

              by Robobagpiper on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:43:34 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  Raise taxes on ordinary people? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        That is not a winning platform! Raising taxes on millionaires is fine, but don't ask the average Joe to pay more! Yikes.

        •  Did you not read this poll? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Ordinary people are practically begging to have their taxes raised (for the median family it's equivalent to a family trip to McDonalds once a paycheck).

          Without letting all the taxes expire, we don't generate anywhere the needed revenue.

          Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

          by Robobagpiper on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:16:14 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  All tax cuts expire, that is. (0+ / 0-)

            Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

            by Robobagpiper on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:19:19 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Regardless of that poll, (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            dan667, Odysseus

            raising taxes on everyone is not a good political move. If we need more revenue, get it from Warren Buffett et al.

            Or eliminate loopholes that allow corporations like GE to pay nothing in taxes!

            •  Soaking the rich alone is not going to (0+ / 0-)

              create the needed revenue, as important as it is to do such.

              It's only politically unfeasible because politicians are fearful, and because people tell them it's unfeasible. Polls like this are precisely what's needed to demonstrate that the public has the back of anyone who does this. This is not to say that powerful rhetorical arguments would not need to be put forth to maintain that support, but the needed meme ("shared sacrifice") has already been promulgated in the name of the foolishness of austerity.

              Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

              by Robobagpiper on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:59:49 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  And do you really think Average Joe (0+ / 0-)

          was overtaxed under Clinton? Seriously?

          Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

          by Robobagpiper on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:16:39 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  This type of town hall grass roots activity (5+ / 0-)

    in GOP districts is exactly what needs to happen.  This is what we did to change the national opinion on the war in Iraq.  DC is paralyzed by the notion of even contemplating revenue increases and have bought into the GOP ideology of cutting taxes and cutting programs.  Trouble is, everyone who has looked at the numbers says you can't get to numerical balance (though that should not be an objective of government) if you do it through spending cuts alone.  In addition, there are grave consequences to the economy of such an approach.

    If we keep this up, we will change more than enough votes in GOP leaning districts to make it mathematically impossible for the GOP nominee to beat Obama and we will retake the House.  More importantly, progressives will have more leverage over conservadems to push for revenue increases in the next Congress and to avoid using tax cuts as a form of economic stimulus, and focus stimulus on infrastructure spending that has a better multiplier effect.

    Alternative rock with something to say:

    by khyber900 on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:08:38 AM PDT

  •  He MUST Focus On The Positive, Like ... HOPE! (0+ / 0-)

    that is what we need!


    IF we're all unity on HOPE,
    THEN there won't be divisiveness and we'll all HOPE!


    ha ha ha.

    the ONLY time this guy has been pushing anything hard has been when it is to sell us bottom 80%+++ 'ers out...

    (aside from the coppers they throw at our feet once in a while)

    At least when I was hearing the latest bush-cheney-lie-du-jour,  I hadn't voted FOR it!



    Yond Cassius has a lean and hungry look; He thinks too much: such men are dangerous

    by seabos84 on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:10:49 AM PDT

    •  Maybe you should (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Coilette, JBL55, allergywoman, SottoVoce

      work harder and get a new schtick.  Perhaps you missed the point of the diary, which addresses the voice of citizens and the response of all Democratic leaders.  I know that doesn't actually comply with your incessant meme -- which was tiresome 2 days after you started it.

      Vi er alle norske " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

      by gchaucer2 on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:17:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  "response of all Democratic leaders." is MORE (0+ / 0-)

        fucking lies - but

        if people like you knew that,

        then people like you wouldn't give them YOUR time and YOUR money and YOUR votes,

        and then they wouldn't be able to sell us out as "leaders"!

        of course, it is MY fault that a bunch of fucking sell outs are selling us out!

        ha ha ha!

        Punching the Dirty Fucking Hippies works pretty good, doesn't it?


        Yond Cassius has a lean and hungry look; He thinks too much: such men are dangerous

        by seabos84 on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:52:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  One word needs to be added (4+ / 0-)

    to the plea

    "Don't you have the confidence in your own ability in Congress to make up your own mind? You need Grover Norquist to tell you?" the man continued.


    Norquist is the inner circle friend of a convicted felon/lobbyist who was at the heart of a major corruption scandal.

    The point should also be made that Norquist is unelected, and represents no interests but his own.

    Hamdan v. Rumsfeld = the Constitution travels with the flag

    by sailmaker on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:11:08 AM PDT

  •  I think (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JBL55, allergywoman

    That the same public sentiment that made tax cuts popular is making this line catch fire.

    At one point people were getting squeezed due to the inequality of wealth, but since the dems were so beholden to the same interests and had moved to the center they did not understand how to explain this without getting their contributions cut.

    Then you had the grassroots, like people on here mentioning it but nobody else.

    Then people like Robert Reich and Krugman started writing about it and that caused it to percolate more thru the grassroots.

    Gradually as those guys columns were read and they appeared on shows more regular pundits started talking about it.

    Then the media started investigating it and the general public started to catch wind of it.

    BRAVO! The other side of the argument was heard and once the public heard both sides a LOT thought the facts supported that we had coddled the rich.

    The GOP made huge hay out of welfare queens and affirmative action and the politics of resentment thing. Now it's the democrats turn. Glad to see it happening.

  •  What To Do With Those Raised Taxes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    How about not raising taxes to reduce the deficit but rather to get this country's economy moving again by hiring people to rebuild the infrastructure? If Obama weren't such a Repugnican, he'd realize that.

    •  Political judo (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      It's a question of opportunity: the Republicans have spent months now wringing their hands about the deficit and getting the public to worry about the deficit, so it's a good avenue of attack against Norquism.  Breaking the Republicans of their "no new taxes" nonsense is a hard enough job without taking whatever advantage we can get.

    •  that is not even close to being enough (0+ / 0-)

      and you sound like You want Only the working to pay more taxes to lower the deficit?

      15% tax rates for Billionaires is ridiculously low -- most working people pay a higher tax rate than that and need to pay more.

      And taxing Investment Income at 50% -- actually causes those Wealthy to be forced to INVEST that money -- in order to pay less taxes.

      No more Hope and Change -- I lost Hope when I could no longer find a Good Paying Job -- and I don't want Change - as Cuts to Social Security, Medicaid or Education.

      by PAbluestater on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:23:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Dear Mr. Nordquist: about intimidating GOPers to (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    take anti-tax pledges, muse on the views of that wild-eyed leftist radical Edmund Burke:

    Certainly, gentlemen, it ought to be the happiness and glory of a representative to live in the strictest union, the closest correspondence, and the most unreserved communication with his constituents. Their wishes ought to have great weight with him; their opinion, high respect; their business, unremitted attention. It is his duty to sacrifice his repose, his pleasures, his satisfactions, to theirs; and above all, ever, and in all cases, to prefer their interest to his own. But his unbiassed opinion, his mature judgment, his enlightened conscience, he ought not to sacrifice to you, to any man, or to any set of men living. These he does not derive from your pleasure; no, nor from the law and the constitution. They are a trust from Providence, for the abuse of which he is deeply answerable. Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgment; and he betrays, instead of serving you, if he sacrifices it to your opinion.
  •  My brother the moderate Republican (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JBL55, PAbluestater, Odysseus

    feels that calling $250k per year rich is a mistake.  He would be in favor of letting all the Bush tax cuts expire and then reinstating tax cuts for those earning under $1 million per year.

    We arrived at that compromise after much negotiating back and forth.  I figure the two of us are a sample of what would be possible between the Democratic and Republican ideologies.

    •  Samething with me (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JBL55, PAbluestater, Dirtandiron, GMFORD

      I have a friend who is moderate Republican. And he thinks that tax increases on the rich are needed.

    •  $250k/year (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Odysseus, GMFORD

      IS rich. (and that's after-deductions, remember).

      I'm not sure we do our cause any favors by continuing to surrender to the right-wing regarding the use of language.

    •  $250,000/yr is rich. It's almost filthy rich but n (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jeopardydd, GMFORD

      quite. Your friend is delusional, and $1M is too much ground to give.

      •  Think about the purpose of tax cuts (0+ / 0-)

        in the current economy.  The best cuts are those that will pump more $$ back into the economy so those are the middle class.  

        But folks at $250k spend a lot of money too. They are the ones who buy a new car and have their kitchens remodeled, etc.  They dine out and go on vacation, go to plays and the ballet.

        Once you get over $1 million per year they already have everything and consumerism is too bourgeois for them.

        It's a valid point of view.

        •  Several bits of context missing from your (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:


          Most important: these folks absolutely do not spend 100% of the money they are not paying in taxes; they pay down debt or save at least some of it, which does little or nothing to stimulate anything except their compounded interest. Moreover, whatever purchases they do make are not in sufficient volume to be very stimulative.

          On the other hand, the roughly several tens of thousands of people earning between $250,000 and $1,000,000 per year would contribute roughly several hundreds of millions, or perhaps several billions of dollars in taxes if their tax cuts were allowed to expire. Considering that lots of the cuts to our social safety net (e.g. LIHEAP) are well within this range, one way or the other, I just don't think it's justifiable to not tax these people more.

          •  Debt is a problem at all levels. (0+ / 0-)

            That's one of the reasons the recovery is so difficult.  Americans at all levels are simply buried in debt.  They will use tax cuts and other incentives to pay down credit cards instead of buying new things.

            •  I still don't see that as a good argument against (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              taxing people who earn $250,000/year at pre-Bush/Obama-cut levels, especially considering that it doesn't really address the discrepancy between personal spending versus government use of the would-be tax dollars.

  •  NJ Star Ledger today ran a graphic (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JBL55, PAbluestater

    about the Super committee - 5 out of 6 Dems were listed as YES on tax increases.

    .....but that means on the whole its 5 to 7.

    FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:22:28 AM PDT

  •  No (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    raising taxes should not be done to reduce the deficit.  That is putting money back into the economy that we have just taken out.

    We need DEFICIT spending.  Adding money to the economy without taking money.

    Why is this hard?

    "Fighting for us, good. Winning, better. Talking about fighting? Not so good."--Atrios

    by andrewj54 on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:26:29 AM PDT

  •  That's only the beginning. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    People in the grassroots have only begun. They need to do a great deal more before we should expect a real effect in Congress. It is way too soon to say "The grassroots has done its part, sending the message. So now elected Democrats have to do theirs, and fight for real 'shared sacrifice.'"

    If we expect to change the views of Republican officials, those officials have to hear it from people other than Democrats in Congress. For example, watching CNBC the last week or so, it is interesting to hear business people now talking about the need to improve the job situation. And they are not talking about budget cuts.

    Coregonus clupeaformis/ adikameg/ the caribou of the sea

    by Whitefish on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:28:40 AM PDT

  •  Hultgren is my bagger rep (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    allergywoman, PAbluestater

    I can just about guarantee that the attendees at any town hall event that he throws would be mostly repugs and born-again teabaggers. If he got that kind of grilling from a crowd he's getting it from the people who helped get him that seat.

    Buyers remorse can be a harsh thing.

    Fuck you Hultgren, stick it up your teabagging ass!

    •  I didn't vote for him, and I was there. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rightiswrong, PAbluestater, Odysseus

      So was my husband. So were local Dems and members of the peace community.

      But you're right...I didn't recognize most of the people there. And they were mostly against his nonsensical talking points.

      "This is about the human heart, and if that sounds corny, so be it." -- Keith Olbermann

      by allergywoman on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:39:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks for being there (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I'm way too pissed to be anywhere near teabaggers these days. It just ain't safe. (for them) One of the worst things that can happen happened to me recently: Shortly after I moved into the 14th, the baggers took over. Being formerly associated with Operation: Turn Dupage Blue I was disappointed that we lost this district to teabaggers so easily in 2010. I was looking forward to supporting Kendall County Democrats and hoping for a turnaround out here like I saw in DuPage back in '08. So now I'm hoping that Walsh and Hultgren cancel each other out this time and clear the way for a Democrat to fill this seat once again.

  •  Efficacy of Tax Increases (0+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    Hidden by:

    If you raised taxes on people earning $1M+ to 100% of their income (+$350 B in revenue) and cut all discretionary and military spending (-$1300 B in spending) so that only entitlements remained ($2100 B), you would be $20B short of closing the budget deficit.  

    The economy would collapse at those tax rates rates, since there would be literally no incentive to work, and we would be completely vulnerable to attack, unable to help provide education funds, state aid, and have no national system of preventing crime.  Simply raising taxes is an empty talking point.  Let's talk turkey and stop acting like children.  We need to reform entitlement, we are on a terribly unsustainable path.

    •  RW talking points, HR. n/t (0+ / 0-)

      "This is about the human heart, and if that sounds corny, so be it." -- Keith Olbermann

      by allergywoman on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:39:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Its a sad day for Democrats.... (0+ / 0-)

        When numerical statements of fact are Right Wing talking points.  Seriously look at the budget and look at the rate of expenses for various programs before pontificating that I am a Right Wing nut.  Delusion only gets you so far.

    •  ?? - what a cheesy argument (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brooke In Seattle, Odysseus

      raising taxes on the wealthy isn't the whole deal, it's part of the deal.

      the rest is raising taxes on the rest, cutting the military (LOTS), fixing health care costs, and putting people back to work.

      there goes your deficit.

      Here I am! I'm up here! Where are you? - the Red-eyed Vireo

      by mightymouse on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:00:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sounds like a coherent plan. (0+ / 0-)

        You should write it down and have it scored by the CBO.  You can not create a balanced budget (which ultimately, at some point in our history, we need to do or the credit rating will continue to go down) without changing the way that we deal with entitlement spending in this country.  I haven't heard any cohesive plans from the left, but I have heard a lot of rallying cries about NOT reforming.

        I am overwhelmed at how many self-proclaimed intelligent individuals on this board substitute the facts that I have presented with a strictly ideological battle cry.  Europe is burning before our eyes, and you want to push us closer to their system of governance.  Open your eyes and observe- you cannot be so dogmatic in your approach as to reject the notion of serious cuts when we spend $1,670,000,000,000 more than collect in revenue in a year.

        Submit a plan to the CBO that creates a long term balance to the economy- include as many taxes as you would like, and cut as much or as little as you would like.  If it scores out as being sustainable, I will tip my hat and agree that there might be another way, but absent such a plan, you are the child in the room stomping his feet because life isn't fair.  We used to have discussions in this country, now we get temper tantrums.

        I know you don't like what I say, but you haven't responded to any of my points.  You insist that there is a magic solution and that problems disappear with some whimsical snap of the fingers.  Please provide a tangible plan that scores out to be sustainable.  "Lots" isn't a number.

        •  Then stick to the facts. (0+ / 0-)

          Fact: We have had higher tax rates on the rich in the past.  Somehow, we survived.

          Fact: We spend more than any other country in the world on defense, and are close to half of all world spending.

          Fact: Medicare/Medicaid desperately needs to be overhauled.

          Fact: Social Security is not in danger, and does not contribute to the deficit.

          Your usage of "entitlements" is overbroad and unnecessary.  There is properly an allergic reaction to lumping Social Security in with all of the other bullshit that you mention.

          -7.75 -4.67

          "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."

          There are no Christians in foxholes.

          by Odysseus on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 01:19:43 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The Facts (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            1) Nominal tax rates are just that, nominal.  The tax code has never been more progressive than it is today in real terms.  The Laffer Curve is a very real phenomenon and can be observed in tax receipt vs. nominal tax rate numbers over the past 4 decades.  We desperately need to broaden the tax base, eliminate deductions, and restructure the way we deal with investment income.  You are taxed much less if you are already rich than if you are a high wage earner.  I agree that that is wrong, and there is a lot of middle ground if you back off of the cry for those who are high wage earners and refocus on investment income.

            2) We do spend more on defense than any other country, but what we currently spend is actually historically in line with what the US has spent as a share of GDP.

            3) Social Security is in some danger.  It is a different animal, and I will acknowledge that, but our population has not increased as significantly as the program had originally estimated, meaning that some reform is necessary to make sure that benefits can be seen in the long run.  With longer lifespans and an aging population, we need to discuss later retirement ages, real cuts to COLA, and some means testing.

            4) Medicare and Medicaid are leaking money.  We agree.  There needs to be a better way.  I am not an expert on how to fix them, but ideas need to come out beyond a primal scream from either side to save or eliminate in toto.

            •  Corporate Taxes (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              Also, a very simple one.  Make corporations pay taxes based on what they file as profits in earnings reports to stockholders, and don't allow them to manipulate the numbers for tax purposes when filing with the IRS/SEC.  If you admit one number, pay on it.  Common sense solution many people can agree on.

  •  Ha ha! See? I told you my pals at the Hultgren (5+ / 0-)

    meeting had that part covered! :D

    We had a fantastic questioner who asked about the Warren Buffet request for higher taxes, too. Most people there were clued into this issue.

    And it was Northern Illinois Jobs with Justice that coordinated the signs, MoveOn that encouraged us to go, though I did see some members of the county Democratic Party there.

    Go us!

    "This is about the human heart, and if that sounds corny, so be it." -- Keith Olbermann

    by allergywoman on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:33:15 AM PDT

  •  You mean they think we are coordinating this? (0+ / 0-)

    Now that is funny!  The democratic base is most certainly not coordinating any effort to target GOP town halls.  From what I can tell, these are constituents who are fed up with the GOP lies.  Hell, I wouldn't be at all surprised if many of them are registered Republicans and/or Independents.

    "The real wealth of a nation consists of the contributions of its people and nature." -- Rianne Eisler

    by noofsh on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:57:18 AM PDT

  •  I've always wondered why the left (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brooke In Seattle, Odysseus

    doesn't demonize Norquist and Limbaugh, the way the right demonizes Soros. All those 2 clowns do is promote self interest at the expense of everyone else.

    Battleground Wisconsin: Fascism has come to America

    by jhecht on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 10:59:06 AM PDT

  •  Dems need to keep talking Buffet and question (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    "do the other Billionaires and Millionaires Want to Help the USA Prosper By Investing in Jobs like Warren Buffet --- or -- do those wealthy prefer the USA to stay in a Recession - and not help the people?"

    Need to Point Out that those Billionaires are Selfish Greedy A-holes -- they are only taxed at 15% or Less most people Do Not Know about the ridiculous low 15%.

    Put that question and info out there for All to hear.

    No more Hope and Change -- I lost Hope when I could no longer find a Good Paying Job -- and I don't want Change - as Cuts to Social Security, Medicaid or Education.

    by PAbluestater on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:14:03 AM PDT

  •  There are three ways to close a deficit... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    1. increase income
    2. reduce spending
    3. Some of both.

    Tea-publicans have been insisting that #2 is the ONLY way and dumb-ass Democrats have been going along with it.

    There are people who, instead of listening to what is being said to them, are already listening to what they are going to say themselves. - Albert Guinon

    by Candide08 on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:36:03 AM PDT

  •  Obama rallied the troops withhis bus tour (0+ / 0-)

    After each meeting on his bus tour small speech, question and answer session Obama appealed to the crowd to sen a message to DC and their representatives  to support his ideas a balanced approach: job creation, reveneue increase, and deficit reduction. It seems to be working.

  •  If dems had any political sense (0+ / 0-)

    they could boomerange the deficit issue on republicans.

    Not holding my breath.

    "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

    by Subterranean on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 11:48:58 AM PDT

  •  Here's more... (0+ / 0-)

    House Speaker John Boehner joined Cravaack and his fellow Minnesotan Rep. Erik Paulsen for a $10,000-a-person golf outing. (Lunch but no golf with the congressmen cost $1,000 a head.) Nearly 200 protesters showed up outside with signs accusing Republicans of protecting corporations over people, and a plane flew overhead with a banner that read, "Where's our piece of the pie? Jobs now."

  •  How about another framing... (0+ / 0-)

    Why is the working class is footing the bill for two wars and corporations are reaping the profits. It's time for ALL Americans to pitch in. Including "corporate persons".

    Those who are willing to sacrifice liberty for safety deserve neither. (Paraphrasing B. Franklin)

    by p a roberson on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 12:43:09 PM PDT

  •  about time Democrats and Progressives learned to (0+ / 0-)

    play on the same ballfield, and slam the opposition instead of blaming the Coach and eating our our own team.

    Keep these kind of stories coming and maybe we can go back to being part of the solution instead of part of the the problem.

    Unless we learn that eating our seed corn is not a survival mechanism we will be eaten alive.

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