Posts Tagged ‘Taxes’

California GOP cries racism over popular Tea Party sign

April 23, 2009

At the tea party I attended, I saw little to no racist signs.  One loon in the corner that was yammering about Obama’s birth certificate aside, the protest mostly focused on demonizing the Democratic leadership.  I know that isn’t what the teabaggers wanted me to get out of it, but that is what it ultimately was.

Several days after the tea parties have ended, the California GOP is actually accusing tea baggers of racism.  Who saw that coming?  Anyway, the sad part about their cries is that the sign in question is simply not racist.  Apparently, their just not as used to playing the race card as the Democrats are.

This is it.

This is it.

Aside from being one of the only truly bipartisan signs, this is an odd message for any Republican to be delivering.  But that’s the point.  This sign was actually created by Ron Paul supporters.  The GOP in California wants to back as far away from this sign as possible.

If Israel didn’t have a Star of David on their flag, then maybe this sign could be considered racist.  But the first thought that went through my head upon seeing it was this:  We give money and weapons to Israel who end up killing a whole bunch of Palestinians.  That isn’t an opinion.  That’s fact. The last scuffle between the two ended with several hundred dead Palestinians and two dead Israelis.

You could make a similar sign using hands from Hezbollah and Hamas dumping cash into a funnel with a Palestinian flag on it and ending with dead Israelis.  That’s not racist.  It’s fact.   People have a right to be mad about shit like this.

The bottom line is that the word “racist” is thrown around far too much these days.  If the California GOP deems this sign “racist” then that stops all real discussion about the policies that the sign is critiquing.

RWP Rating: Bizarre

Full Story:  Concord Monitor

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Craziest Photos from Tax Day Tea Parties

April 15, 2009

Digg It!

Like the videos, I’ll keep adding more as I find them.  What the hell are they protesting?  It seems to be a smorgasbord of right wing ideas that have been rejected by the electorate.  Check out videos as well.

Special Thanks to HuffPo, Wonkette, PolioGazette, The Washington Independent, etc.

Let the Tea Party Revolution begin…Thomas Paine vs. Fox News

April 15, 2009
Here we GO.

Here we GO.

To kick things off we’ve got a few early goodies.  An opener to Sean Hannity’s show last night featured a geriatric Thomas Paine lamenting the new direction our country is going (or not going, depending on your particular brand of radical political ideology).

Here is the video.

Once again, Tea Party “logic” fails.  The fraud Paine tells a story of “no taxation without representation,” a staple of the mock movement that makes absolutely no sense in modern context.  Every protester on the streets today has 3 representatives in Congress voted to that office by their given districts.   There is representation.  Your side lost.  Get on with it.

Paine was a populist, make no mistake about it.  He was a French Revolution fan and a proponent of social programs that would help commoners with their day to day lives.

Paine was a deist and did not believe that any organized religion offered a sound explanation of life.  In The Age of Reason, Paine wrote:

I do not believe in the creed professed by the Jewish church, by the Roman church, by the Greek church, by the Turkish church, by the Protestant church, nor by any church that I know of.  My own mind is my own church.

Later in life, he was given honorary French citizenship.

Not exactly the type of guy you would expect to see given a voice on Fox News, eh?

  1. Believer in social programs to help bridge the gap between rich and poor.
  2. Non-Christian.
  3. Fan of European culture and politics.

Fox has blasted Obama from all three of these positions.  You’d think they’d rather bury Thomas Paine then dig up that godless European socialist.

Preparing for the Tea Party Revolution – What you can do

April 14, 2009

“Remember, Remember the Fifteenth of April.”

No, it just doesn’t quite work as well, which is ultimately the story of the Tea Party Revolution.   Smoke and mirrors and idiots that don’t quite know why they are mad will be taking to the streets in disappointing numbers to protest tomorrow.

The problem is that none of them know what the hell they are yelling about.  But let’s give them the benefit of the doubt for now and go into a little history.

You will not see this tomorrow.  You will see overweight white people.

You will not see this tomorrow. You will see overweight white people.

Why the Tea Party Revolution?

There isn’t really a good answer for this one.  The original Boston Tea Party occurred on December 16, 1773 in opposition to a 10% additional duty on tea imported into the United States.  Sam Adams, of delicious beer fame, organized a mass dumping of 342 chests of tea into the Boston Harbor.  The key motto during the Boston Tea Party was “No taxation without representation.”  Colonists were pissed that they did not have any representation in Britain and could not have an impact on legislation.

Fast forward to now.   The Republican party is damn close to irrelevancy and is becoming more and more fringe.  They lost seats in 2006, 2008, and will more than likely lose additional seats in 2010 if the latest polls from Gallup (left-leaning) and Rasmussen (right-leaning) are considered.

Tomorrow, when thousands of people wake up and take to the streets for the Tea Party Revolution, every single one of them has three representatives in Congress.  This is not the Boston Tea Party.  Every single one of the people tomorrow are represented by two democratically-elected Senators and a Representative.  If they are unhappy with the way things are going in their district/state, they can vote that person to the curb.  Hell, if it is the people’s will, then people like Ron Paul could have been elected to the presidency in 2008 and we could have cut all kinds of taxes.

But that isn’t what the people want.

The Tea Party Credo

If you sign up to attend one of the Tea Party events, you will be asked to print out two documents to share with people who see the protest.  One is an elected officials checklist (what does your Rep, Senator, etc. think about a variety of issues) and the other is 12 American Solutions for Jobs and Prosperity.

Because the checklist can vary (and it’s really easy for Republican representatives to say what they want when they don’t have any power to set the budget/agenda), let’s look at the “Solutions” handout.

Whosoever has the gold, shall make the rules.

Whosoever has the gold, shall make the rules.

12 American Solutions for Jobs and Prosperity

  1. Payroll Tax Stimulus. With a temporary new tax credit to offset 50% of the payroll tax, every small business would have more money, and all Americans would take home more of what they earn.
  2. Real Middle-Income Tax Relief. Reduce the marginal tax rate of 25% down to 15%, in effect establishing a flat-rate tax of 15% for close to 9 out of 10 American workers.
  3. Reduce the Business Tax Rate. Match Ireland’s rate of 12.5% to keep more jobs in America.
  4. Homeowner’s Assistance. Provide tax credit incentives to responsible home buyers so they can keep their homes.
  5. Control Spending So We Can Move to a Balanced Budget. This begins with eliminating Congressional earmarks and wasteful pork-barrel spending.
  6. No State Aid Without Protection From Fraud. Require state governments to adopt anti-fraud and anti-theft policies before giving them more money.
  7. More American Energy Now. Explore for more American oil and gas and invest in affordable energy for the future, including clean coal, ethanol, nuclear power and renewable fuels.
  8. Abolish Taxes on Capital Gains. Match China, Singapore and many other competitors. More investment in America means more jobs in America.
  9. Protect the Rights of American Workers. We must protect a worker’s right to decide by secret ballot whether to join a union, and a worker’s right to negotiate freely. Forced unionism will kill jobs at a time when we can’t afford to lose them.
  10. Replace Sarbanes-Oxley. This failed law is crippling entrepreneurial startups. Replace it with affordable rules that help create jobs, not destroy them.
  11. Abolish the Death Tax. Americans should work for their families, not for Washington.
  12. Invest in Energy and Transportation Infrastructure. This includes a new, expanded electric power grid and a 21st century air traffic control system that will reduce delays in air travel and save passengers, employees and airlines billions of dollars per year.

Besides being a Who’s Who of failed John McCain campaign economic tactics, this list should be ridiculed for its complete lack of rational thought.  Most of the steps reduce taxes, yet step five brazenly maintains that they want to balance the budget.  How the hell are you supposed to balance the budget when you cut all of these taxes?

Pork spending is a small fraction of the budget in Washington and seven out of the ten biggest piggies this year were Republicans.  Many of these ideas sound like they will help the average worker, but this proposal really helps billionaires.  With no capital gains taxes, billionaires will have a heyday on Wall Street.   So why are they trying to help the rich, when the middle class is seeing record unemployment?

Who funds the Tea Party Revolution

Even though Fox News will have you believe that the Tea Party Revolution is a spontaneous reaction from “The People,” it really was started by FreedomWorks, the conservative version of MoveOn.  Along with Dick Armey, FreedomWorks is organizing and funding many of the larger Tea Parties.  In other words, protesters are going to be paid tomorrow to protest.   It has nothing to do with outrage over the bailouts (which should cause protests), it has everything to do with a bunch of billionaires that don’t want to pay higher taxes under Obama.

Dick Armey wishes he still had power.

Dick Armey wishes he still had power.

The FreedomWorks web page is a joke.  Any rational person that peruses it will find more lies than an OJ Simpson trial.  Armey says that Obama is going to cap all executive pay…which isn’t true at all.  Obama is capping how much money can go to executives that receive money from tax payers.  Do you want your federal income tax money going to buy a 12th home for some asshole AIG executive?  If Microsoft wants to pay their executives millions a year then I have no problem with that.  They haven’t accepted any bailout money at all.  Obama is saying the exact same thing.  That doesn’t stop the BS from flowing from Fox News and CNBC with comedic consistency.

What you can do

  1. Find a Tea Party near you.  You can find them by visiting the FreedomWorks website or by visiting www.taxdayteaparty.com
  2. Go to the Tea Party and take pictures of signs.  Count the number of protesters.
  3. Interview people participating in the Tea Party.  Ask them if they have heard of FreedomWorks.  Ask them who organized the party and attempt to speak with the person in charge.  If you are able to, ask them if they are being compensated for their work.
  4. Write up your impressions of the protest.  Whether positive or negative, we will give you a voice on Real Weird Politics.  You can comment with a link to your blog, youtube videos, or photos.
  5. Real Weird Politics will have stories all day tomorrow with impressions from demonstrations around the country.

We’re already ready with one delightful video from The Young Turks.  One protester at a Tea Party Revolution event started spouting off about how the Communists had infiltrated America in a plan hatched during the 1950s.  He wants you to take your kids out of college and stop paying your taxes.  A woman in the crowd thinks you should burn all your books.  Sounds like a great way to succeed!  Here is the video:

Have fun tomorrow!

Hookers from Moonlite Bunny Ranch testify for tax on prostitution

April 9, 2009

Nevada, the only state in the United States with legalized prostitution, is now considering adding a $5 tax to each sex act performed.  Surprisingly, the Moonlite Bunny Ranch, the most infamous brothel in the country, has come out in support of the new tax.

I'll take the one on the right.

I'll take the one on the right.

The Moonlite Bunny Ranch gained pop culture fame with the HBO series Cathouse.  Owner Dennis Hof, employee Madame Suzette, and hookers Airforce Amy, Brooke Taylor, and Chloe Daniels testified in favor of the tax.  Because of Nevada’s budget shortfall, the state is in need of new ways to generate Revenue.  Airforce Amy said, “If $5 per person can raise $2 million a year, I’m all for it.”

Since prostitution was legalized in Nevada in 1978, the state has never taxed it.  This seems like a pretty good way of making some revenue for the state.  You have to figure that a lot of the people that utilize Nevada’s unique laws are from out of state, so they aren’t even taking from the Nevada economy at large.  I find it a bit bizarre that hookers and owners of brothels would actively campaign for more taxation, but I suppose it helps with their public image.

Hell, they know how to get in the news and I doubt that an extra $5 is going to deter any of their potential clients.  Good call, Nevada.

RWP Rating: Bizarre

Full Story: Nevada Appeal

Seattle to vote on imposing bag fees on shoppers

April 2, 2009

Seattle voters will go to the polls in August and vote on a measure that will charge “bag fees” at all retail and grocery stores in order to encourage people to bring their own canvas bags.

American Chemistry Council filmaker believes plastic bags are the future.

American Chemistry Council filmmaker believes plastic bags are the future.

The bill would charge Seattleites $.20 for each plastic bag they take from a store.  Bag fees were actually supposed to be imposed earlier.  Last July, the City Council voted and approved an ordinance that would have gone into effect on January 1, 2009.  That’s when the evil plastic bag lobbyist increased pressure on the city.  The American Chemistry Council managed to convince the City Council to rethink the issue.  The city then decided that they would put pass the buck to the public.

These lobbying firms have the most hypocritical names.  On what planet do chemists encourage More plastic bag use?  It’d be like calling a Fast Food lobbying group “The Cardiology Council.”

RWP Rating: Unusual

Full Story: Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Rush Limbaugh runs away from New York state income tax obligations

March 30, 2009

Rush Limbaugh has had it with the state of New York.  After years of maintaining a a condo in New York and paying the state’s income taxes, he is looking for another place to vacation when hurricane season hits in Florida.

Oxycontin will make you rich.

Oxycontin will make you rich.

The multimillionaire is particularly perturbed by Governor David Paterson’s decision to raise the income tax in order to make up for next year’s deficit.  Rush doesn’t yet know which state he will run away to when the rains come.  High on his list of priorities is, you guessed it, low state income taxes.  Texas is looking good, as the state has no income tax, at least for now.

Here is a partial transcript from today’s show:

New York is the escape valve in case hurricanes are showing up in our area, because of the loss of electricity. So I’ll tell you what I’m going to do. I’m going to look for an alternative studio somewhere outside New York, perhaps Texas — another no-income-tax state — and I’m going to get the hell over there, when a hurricane starts coming our way, ’cause I told Mayor Bloomberg: I’ll be the first to lead the way. You know, this is just… I’ll sell my apartment. I’ll sell my condominium. I’m going to get out of there totally, ’cause this is just absurd, and it’s ridiculous — and it isn’t going to work. It’s punishing the achievers for the mistakes and the lack of discipline on the part of a bunch of corrupt politicians that have run that city and state into the ground for I don’t know how many years — and I, for one, am not going to take the blame for it.

They’re going to praise Paterson for driving me out, even though I am rarely there anyway. Or, instead of a slogan, like: “New York: It’s Never Enough,” the I love New York campaigns, “You May Love New York, But New York Doesn’t Like You.” That ought to be another slogan that Governor Paterson ought to employ.

What a fucking baby.

It’s pretty amusing that the man who says he speaks for middle America only really spends time on the beaches in Miami and in the urban jungle of downtown New York.  Any bets that Limbaugh chooses one of the three big cities in Texas to call home?  I don’t think you’ll see him shacking up with the tumbleweeds in Crawford.

RWP Rating: Normal