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I made the right choice.
The Civic was packed last night for 70 minutes-worth of get-down, blues-infused, guitar-driven, blues-rock boogie from the 4-decade-and-still-standing, L'il Ole' Band from Texas. Yes, Billy Gibbons voice is ready for the junkyard, but my-oh-my can the boomer guitarist still play that axe. Rousing renditions of "Gimme All Your Lovin", "La Grange", "Jesus Just Left Chicago", "My Head's In Mississippi" plus, plus....kept the crowd on their feet (including Mr and Mrs Reverend) for the majority of the show.
Personal favorite song: "Tube Snake Boogie".....'boogie-woogie all night long'...
Meanwhile.....in Colorado last night two guys had a debate. Transcript here. A detail-filled, mildly-wonkish, back and forth between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, primarily covering domestic economic policy. This morning's handicappers tell me Mitt won the debate,....but after reading the transcript.....the only way that is possible is if you dismiss Romney's evasiveness, less-than-truthful responses, and...naturally...his own special brand of flip-flopping.
On that last notion, Exhibit A:
Mr. Romney: "I'm not looking for a $5 trillion tax cut. What I've said is I won't put in place a tax cut that adds to the deficit. That's part one. So there's no economist that can say Mitt Romney's tax plan adds $5 trillion if I say I will not add to the deficit with my tax plan."
Mr. Obama: "Well, for 18 months he's been running on this tax plan. And now, five weeks before the election, he's saying that his big, bold idea is, "Never mind.""
Of course. Kind of reminds me of a Roseanadana-skit from SNL, or was it The Church Lady? Still a little foggy-headed this morning.
I warned in comments yesterday that Romney would say anything.....and last night he did just that.
Mitt Romney's tax reform plan all year has been to cut income tax rates by 20% across the board. According to the former governor, his tax-cutting plan will be revenue neutral.....meaning for every dollar lost in cutting tax rates, a dollar must be recouped by eliminating tax deductions.
Romney stubbornly stuck to his "revenue neutral" guns last night despite the fact that mathematically it is impossible to cut enough deductions to offset the...yes, $5 trillion in proposed tax cuts....without stripping tax deductions (mortgage, charity) from the middle and working class. Adding to Mitt's muddied math is the fact that he continued last night to refuse to specify what deductions he would eliminate.
Mitt's "never mind" moment....
"I think first of all, let me -- let me repeat -- let me repeat what I said. I'm not in favor of a $5 trillion tax cut. That's not my plan. My plan is not to put in place any tax cut that will add to the deficit. That's point one.
So you may keep referring to it as a $5 trillion tax cut, but that's not my plan."
Yes, governor....it has been your plan all year. A 20% income tax cut across the board removes $5 trillion over ten years from government revenues. BUT, Mitt's tax cuts won't add to the deficit and taxes on the middle class won't be raised? It's a silly mathematical cul-de-sac that makes absolutely no rational sense.
Challenged by Obama, Romney resorted to the voodoo....
"...what I do is I bring down the tax rates, lower deductions and exemptions, the same idea behind Bowles-Simpson, by the way, get the rates down, lower deductions and exemptions, to create more jobs, because there's nothing better for getting us to a balanced budget than having more people working, earning more money, paying more taxes. That's by far the most effective and efficient way to get this budget balanced."
Always the voodoo. For newbees.....voodoo economics is a conservative idea which states that when taxes are lowered, which starves government of revenue,....somehow.... government will then have more revenue from all the new jobs created by cutting taxes. So much new revenue from so many new jobs that the government will wind up with more revenue than the amount slashed in tax cuts.
Two big problems with the voodoo. It doesn't work.....and....it doesn't work.
Cutting taxes has never been proven to result in a higher number of jobs. Either take Bush Junior's double-dip, 2001 and 2003 massive tax cuts.....or Bill Clinton's tax increase....as your examples. Bush's cuts resulted in the lowest number of jobs created in any modern presidency....Clinton's tax increases resulted in the largest jobs spike in modern history.
Cutting taxes has never resulted in more revenue for the government than the amount lost in the tax cut in the first place. Not under Maximus Ronaldus. Not under Commander Codpiece. Never. Thus the voodoo. In spite of the fact that cutting taxes has never resulted in more revenue for the government than before taxes were cut......Romney, this year's GOP presidential candidate insists it will...this time.
From reading the transcript it seems as though President Obama was playing it safe last night. Too bad. Last night is when Obama should have gone in for the proverbial kill. The issue resonating the most right now with Americans is Mitt's "47%" comment...and yet, Obama did not raise it even once last night. Instead, Obama's performance last night was typical of his presidency.....reasoned cautiousness mixed with pragmatism.
I doubt if last night's debate will have changed anyone's mind.