01.25.2012 09:11 AM

Obama: the 99 per cent

He calls it the 98 per cent, but the message is the same: the rich should pay more.  Ironically, I spent part of this week interviewing Occupiers at the last Occupy encampment in Canada, in Harbourfront Park in St. John’s.  Their message, too, is all about the 99 per cent – that a minority control have a major share, while the majority are left with a minority of the wealth.

All of this is basically what my next book is about, and I hereby demand that the President give me royalties for stealing my ideas for the SOTU.  It’s why he’s going to win again, after all.

38 Comments

  1. Warren says:

    I’d love to see your muse, Stephen Harper, say that out loud. It would be his last official statement.

    • sharonapple88 says:

      Ditto your leader saying “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.”

      That line may have been adapted from sentiments in the Bible.

      “This is what the Lord has commanded: Gather of it, every man of you, as much as he can eat; you shall take an omer apiece, according to the number of persons who each of you has in his tent. And the people of Israel did so; they gathered some more, some less. But when they measured it with an omer, he that gathered much had nothing over, and he that gathered little had no lack; each gathered according to what he could eat.” (Ex. 16:16-18)

      “All that believed were together, and had all things in common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.” (Acts 2:44-45)

      I suppose we could even throw in the Parable of the Vineyard in there — a man paying all his workers the same wage even though some had worked there longer than others.

      Anyway, something to consider.

      • Warren says:

        Gord just came out against fairness. This gets better and better.

      • Patrick Deberg says:

        Sharon you are obviously not acquainted with the “Right Wing Jesus” a new and more muscular version of the Jesus with the lambs. The new Jesus takes steroids and pumps iron to be ready to drive the barbarians from the gates of heaven. He has no time for the weak and helpless any more he has a tendency to hang out with up by your bootstraps crowd. He’s working hard to bring down the apocalypse and rapture the good guys up to the new Jesus Commando heaven where they get to fire off a few magazines with no gun law freaks to get in the way. He was going to tie pigeons to four foot ropes to shoot at but he only has doves. Wait a minute, he doesn’t need doves any more! Line them up! The point I am making here is the Right wing Jesus isn’t for all humanity anymore. He’s Caucasian and he’s pissed and he’s not sharing. And when he raptures up all his right wing buddies I hear all of them are going to watch as our eyes boil out for all eternity and laugh at us. Gord You know what I’m talkin about !!

      • Ted H says:

        Now that we know that “fairness” is really a code word for Communism, I guess the SENIOR CITIZEN’S FAIRNESS ACT that was part of the Republican CONTRACT WITH AMERICA, when Newt Gingrich was House Speaker proves that Newt is really a Communist in disguise. No wonder the Republican Primary voters are ambivalent!

      • Jason King says:

        That’s an awful harsh thing to say about Florida State University Gord.

    • sharonapple88 says:

      Ditto your leader saying “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.”

      That line may have been adapted from sentiments in the Bible.

      “This is what the Lord has commanded: Gather of it, every man of you, as much as he can eat; you shall take an omer apiece, according to the number of persons who each of you has in his tent. And the people of Israel did so; they gathered some more, some less. But when they measured it with an omer, he that gathered much had nothing over, and he that gathered little had no lack; each gathered according to what he could eat.” (Ex. 16:16-18)

      “All that believed were together, and had all things in common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.” (Acts 2:44-45)

      I suppose we could even throw in the Parable of the Vineyard in there — a man paying all his workers the same wage even though some had worked there longer than others.

      Anyway, something to consider. People don’t go running from religion even though there are “socialist” themes in the text.

  2. Pat says:

    They pay higher tax rates? I thought Warren Buffet said that they paid lower rates, but more taxes. Of course they pay more in total dollars – right now someone who makes $1 million per year could pay less than 1% tax and still pay more into the system than I do – the thing is, he/she would still be clearing over 99% of their income.

    Gord – why should it be that the people who are least able to pay – the ones who don’t net millions per year – should be the ones to pay higher tax rates? How does that make sense at all?

    I’ll give another example: If I make $40,000/year and you make $1 million/year, but in every other way are equal (say I decided to work for a community group or something rather than run a business), and we each must pay 50% tax, you would still clear $500,000 while I would be totally unable to pay for food AND shelter. That is the problem. The people who are most able to pay, the people who would feel a tax increase the least in terms of day-to-day ability to live are the ones paying the lowest tax rates (in the US, at least).

    Also, to counteract the imminent trickle-down theory garbage I’m anticipating from you – the income for the rice, and the profit made by businesses are far outstripping the income of those lower on the totem pole. Galen Weston may be clearing millions per year, and his business’s profits may be growing per year, but his front-line employees are still making $10/hour (and wouldn’t even be making that much if it wasn’t being legislated).

    • sharonapple88 says:

      Buffet pays the highest marginal rate on income. He has large holdings that pay capital gains and or dividend taxes which are taxed at a lower rate. (as do his secretaries investments). Thus he pays at a higher income tax rate but not at an overall rate.

      No, it would be an overall lower rate. Warren Buffet pays himself a salary $100,000, a fraction of the $62 million he pulled in on 2010. From the information he released, his tax rate in 2010 was 11%.

      According to Polifact Buffet’s New York Times editorial pretty much stands up factually.

      • sharonapple88 says:

        Ops. You’re right. Higher income taxes, lower overall rate. 😛

        Still, wouldn’t it make sense to raise the taxes on capital gains?

        The income you earn is based on supply and demand. Of you choose a sector that has high suPply and low demand you will earn less. Are you saying an employer in that sector should be legislated to pay more?

        Sometimes the market is mad. Kim Kardashian made $65 million in 2010.

  3. Dave B says:

    Boehner wasn’t clapping. He looked downright pissed off.

  4. Dan says:

    He hit it out of the park last night.

  5. dave says:

    My fantasy is a coast to coast to coast review of what each one of us is contributing, and what each of us is taking out. I suspect that our system allows a few people to take out far more than the value of their contribution.
    A small prejudice I have: Once in a while I hear or read about people being rewarded for taking risks. To me, risks are taken by loggers, fishermen, oil patch workers, nurses, cabbies…I do not have the imagination to appreciate the level of risk taken by people who use other people’s money, nor do I see such people suffering when they mess up.
    I also do not have the imagination to appreciate the skills needed by political appointees, either in government, or in corporate business positions.

  6. Patrick Deberg says:

    This is the biggest red herring in the book!! The rate their taxed at doesn’t matter!! The citizen published an article in the paper last month that said one million companies paid no tax last year, some having paid no tax for ten years. If you reduce your payable amount it doesn’t matter what you pay. But these folks want us to subsidize their cars, clothes, meals, hockey tickets, gas. furniture, pens, paper, and more to numerous too mention. If you dump every breath you take into expenses you have no income! But their entitled to their entitlements………..

  7. Ted H says:

    Relative to all this, the right wing saint, Reagan raised the US deficit by 189%, Bush Senior raised it by 55%, Clinton by 37%, GW Bush by 115% and Barack Obama by 16%.

    Information from the US Treasury Dept. Proof once again that everything relating to economics that comes out of a right wing mouth is total B*S*, and probably accompanied by bad breath as well.

  8. frmr disgruntled Con now happy Lib says:

    If only we had a Prime Minister who could inspire like President Obama……y’know, someone you can really like, or at least attempt to……….

    If he continues out on the stump with speeches like this…..Newt/Mitt doesnt stand a chance…..Oh happy day!

  9. Tim says:

    Why didn’t your old boss Chretien or your current one McGuinty raise income tax rates then if it was such a good idea?

    • Pat says:

      Because they did a pretty good job of tackling the deficit without raising income taxes…

      • Tim says:

        No, they kept in one case the GST and the other brought in the HST. Which is what Obama really should do but doesn’t have to courage and fears being Mulronized.

      • Bill says:

        Chretien downloaded much of the deficit to the provinces and stole 50 billion from the EI Fund. Smoke and mirrors was the Chretien / Martin government. McGuinty hasn’t tackled anything, he’s pounded Ontario with tax after tax (or should I call them premiums) and he has let the unions run the show. The GTA needs to wake up kick this bum out during the next election.

  10. Joey Rapaport says:

    Agree with everything except that Obama will lose to Romney… if the idiot GOP voters select anyone but him, Obama wins in a landslide.

  11. Philippe says:

    Obama’s messaging of “do-thing” congress obstructionism and societal inequality is resonating in the US, big-time. That’s what the campaign will be about, and the overwhelming majority of Americans agree with him that things are out-of-whack. He will also have a billion dollars to make that clear. If you’re a Republican sympathizer, I’m afraid to say the next 5 years will be miserable for you.

  12. ben burd says:

    Because the really rich only pay as much as the half rich and if you disagree there are very sharp financial planners putting portfolios together where people earning 600K are also claiming the GIS – that’s despicable

  13. Jan says:

    You’re obviously not paying attention to the Romney/Gingrich debate on taxation of the rich.

  14. Ted H says:

    Analysis of Daniel’s Speech from Factcheck.Org

    Daniels relied on outdated numbers in claiming that the federal government “borrows one of every three dollars it spends.” That was true last year, but this fiscal year, the government is borrowing $1 of every $3.71 spent, according to the Congressional Budget Office’s most recent projections.

    For fiscal year 2011, which ended Sept. 30, 2011, total outlays were $3.6 trillion, and the deficit was $1.3 trillion. That’s $1 borrowed for every $2.78 spent.

    But for fiscal year 2012, CBO projects total outlays will be $3.6 trillion and the deficit will be $973 billion. That brings the borrowing down to $1 for every $3.71 spent.

    Daniels also made the surprising claim that “the late Steve Jobs [of Apple]- what a fitting name he had – created more of them than all those stimulus dollars the president borrowed and blew.” Reporter Chris Isidore with CNN Moneytook an in-depth look at that dubious claim, finding that jobs at or for Apple pale in comparison to estimates for jobs created by the stimulus legislation. As is often the case with these claims, it’s tough to say how many jobs Steve Jobs gets credit for: Apple itself employs about 63,000 people, but then there are potentially 700,000 assembly workers putting together Apple gadgets at other companies, many of them overseas — plus jobs creating apps for iPhones.

    Under the stimulus, meanwhile, up to 3.6 million more persons were working than would have been the case without the law, at its peak in the third quarter of 2010. That’s according to the CBO. Daniels’ office discounted the CBO’s analysis and gave a vague accounting of employment attributed to Jobs.

    • Ted H says:

      Take special note of this: “there are potentially 700,000 assembly workers putting together Apple gadgets at other companies, many of them overseas”

      So the stimulus creates 3.6 million American jobs, while Steve Jobs creates around 700,000 overseas jobs and the GOP lauds the latter. My goodness, they sure have the interest of the American people at heart don’t they?

      • Ted H says:

        And just for good measure, how about this from WORKING ECONOMICS:

        “In issuing the Republican rebuttal to the State of the Union address, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels had the audacity to present himself as a fiscal conservative and lecture President Obama on economic policy. Daniels presenting himself as a fiscal conservative is farcical: The tax cuts he pushed through for President George W. Bush as director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) are responsible for roughly half of today’s structural budget deficit and half the public debt accumulated last decade. And as expensive as they were, those tax cuts failed to spur even mediocre job growth; Daniels and Bush presided over the weakest economic expansion since World War II, leaving Daniels with a dismal legacy as an economic policymaker.”

  15. JamesHalifax says:

    Those “occupy” folks would have had more traction if they didn’t appear to be cut from the same socialist cloth. In fact, the majority of them looked like unwashed transients with a taste for drugs, sexual assault, and all the gadgets made by those evil corporations they were complaining about. With all the marxist signs and the anti-Jewish contingent, they all looked like your typical NDP gathering. They all appeared to have plenty of time to complain about the folks WITH jobs, while showing absolutely no inclination of finding one themselves. That’s why they only caught the ear of pandering politicians, the CBC, and the Toronto Star. The rest of us were too busy working and paying taxes to listen to the professional moaners.
    Seriously, the Occupy movement was a farce, and those who were involved in it were just a bunch of marxist layabouts. I think the Liberals should re-activate the Occupy movement around 2015. Keep the NDP supporters in one place while working folks actually go out and vote. Liberals may have a shot then…….unless, they pick Bob Rae.

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