Politically angry

Hillary Rodham Clinton has made me almost unspeakably furious with her comments today on the talking-head shows. How dare she set herself apart from so-called elites when she is inarguably an elite herself? How dare she continue to espouse actions like the gas tax moratorium despite what higher and higher budget deficits do to our economy? Where will the United States get financing for our deficits when the dollar collapses even further? To say nothing of how will our roads get fixed and how will we ever learn to live on less petroleum?

I’m no elite, but I’m educated, and I’ll be damned if I continue taking the bashing that is being laid out against people who have bothered to learn something about how the world works.

I’m so angry because the choice in November may well come down to someone I hate versus someone I can’t trust. What am I supposed to do then? What are we all supposed to do? Hell, what are we supposed to do in August when we finally settle on one Democratic candidate and we’re supposed to all be comrades in arms again? There might not be enough Valium in the world to make that happen.

The political discourse during this interminable presidential campaign has caused America yet more damage on top of the ruinous regime of George W. Bush. I don’t want to be ashamed of this country, but our leaders are leaving me no reasonable alternative.

(source: Clinton spurns economists on gas tax [article may get more revisions as the day goes on].)


About songdogmi

I'm a longhaired almost-hippie stuck in the inner suburbs of a major rust-belt metropolis who's thoughtful, creative, and kind of geeky. In exchange for a paycheck I run around in a cubicle maze most days. When I escape, I play music, hang out in coffee houses, dink around on the computer, take naps, and think I should be off in the woods somewhere. Every once in a while I get in my car and drive far, far away, though I've always come back so far.
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15 Responses to Politically angry

  1. Anonymous says:

    Clinton would pay for the “tax holiday” with a windfall profits tax on the oil companies. McCain has no proposal to pay for it so far as I know, and would simply drive the budget deficit even higher. The Yahoo/Reuters article cited did not cover this.

    Anono Primero

    • songdogmi says:

      I remember that, now. But then, cynical bastard that I am today, I think that her advocating a windfall profits tax might be just as much populist pandering as the tax holiday. The reason I hold back on the additional accusation is that the corporate tax structure is probably not built to handle the huge income that oil companies generate. I’m sure no one at the IRS or Congress ever expected one company to make over $10 billion dollars in three months.

      • ferndalealex says:

        And, what the gas companies don’t charge on the “gas tax” they’ll feed through to consmers for the windfall tax. Then, when the holiday’s over they’ll just tack the renewed gas tax onto the “untaxed” price & we’ll be further behind. It isn’t cynicism to expect corporations to do whatever they can to maximize profits.

      • songdogmi says:

        Absolutely. There will be lots of incentive to the oil companies to pass on costs; any business will do that. So then you need a law to limit gasoline prices to prevent them from going up too fast… and if anyone thinks the oil and gasoline market is a mess now, just add that layer of regulation and see what happens.

  2. rambear says:

    (clapping paws together) Well done, lad!

  3. zenicurean says:

    I’m obviously not a massive fan of Mrs Clinton, so when I read about this from Greg Mankiw’s blog today I can’t say I was surprised. She does this sort of thing, and I suppose there’s some popular demand for it.

    Although… I can’t help wondering if her inability to name a single economist who agrees with her was stunningly poor preparation, or if it was supposed to be some sort of strange appeal to the common man. She’s too methodical to make a simple mistake. And I mean, surely she has court economists at her beck and call, a bit like those illiterate kings of old who used to have court astrologers?

    • songdogmi says:

      I found myself thinking that after those comments, she’ll never find economists to serve on the Council of Economic Advisors, and she might end up having some rather awkward moments with Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke (whose term of office is offset so that she’ll have him around for a few years). So maybe she’s relying on… I don’t know, astrologers, perhaps.

      Dr. Mankiw also said (back on April 29) that he didn’t know of any prominent economists who favor the gas tax holiday, either. There might well be economists who do, but perhaps as a step toward cutting back all of govenment and taxation. If Clinton was actually some sort of libertarian, then a gas tax holiday might be a good first step down that path. But she’s no more a libertarian than … well, she definitely isn’t.

      I don’t think she made a mistake. I think she’s trying to appeal to the masses who want both tax relief and lower gasoline prices. And I can’t blame anyone for wanting such things, but no one really wants to pay the long-term costs of the short-term benefit.

      • ferndalealex says:

        Straw Grasping

        If we’re to look for a bright side…at least she’s acknowledging it needs to be paid for!

      • songdogmi says:

        Re: Straw Grasping

        That is one thing… McCain, so far, hasn’t proposed any counter-balance like the windfall profits tax yet.

      • zenicurean says:

        Apparently the gas tax holiday idea was originally proposed, but thankfully not thought up, by… John McCain. Funny that. It’s counter-intuitive, I suppose, I had slightly higher hopes for him.

      • songdogmi says:

        I saw an article last week about McCain’s economic advisor, the main point being that McCain is advocating a few economic policies now that run counter to his previous overall philosophy. The gas tax holidy is one of them.

        As to why a Democrat (Clinton) seems to advocate so many positions McCain does… I guess she’s aiming for the middle as far as voters go. Our middle is a bit further to the right than the middle of a lot of other nations.

  4. altivo says:

    As usual, the election will come down to a choice between a jerk and a total asshole. Remember, I predicted this months ago. When Clinton and Obama finish shredding each other, the chances of either winning the presidency will be less than nothing. So we’re in for four more years of Republican cronyism and “let them eat cake” economics. Not to mention McCain’s “hundred more years of Iraq” attitude. Welcome [back] to 1968, for those of us old enough to remember. Or maybe even 1972, but I don’t think the Republicans will have to stoop to dirty tricks this time out. The Dems have slit their own wrists early.

    Focus on the local campaigns. Control of Congress is going to be crucial under McCain. A return to a Republican majority (quite possible, alas) would be lethal to all of us.

    • songdogmi says:

      Focusing on local campaigns is how the political evangelicals grabbed enough power to have national influence starting in the 1980s, so it’s apparently a good strategy.

      I just wish both parties, but especially the Democrats, would realize how bad the 27-month presidential campaign is as a system. There is no way to not have widespread shredding. By rights, people should be walking away in disgust and boredom, which is why I’m slightly surprised by reports of high turnouts in Indiana and in Pennsylvania two weeks ago. Maybe I’m the only one who’s tired of this crap?

      • altivo says:

        The polarization is so strong that it still turns people out. But if you start questioning those voters in depth, almost all of them are single issue voters. They go to the polls over their one polarizing issue, whether it’s abortion, or Iraq, or whatever. Most Americans simply aren’t interested in day to day politics any more. They don’t think it has anything to do with them. They’re wrong, but it is going to be very difficult to overcome that after 50+ years of stupid bickering and deliberate attempts at polarization.

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