Cutting Through The Crap

Friday, March 19, 2010

File Under.... "Duh"


In comments on this blog, one of the more constant supporters of the teabaggers frequently admits to not really knowing much about politics. Turns out, it's a perfect match. To the surprise of no one who has ever read a sign those angry and uninformed so proudly wave, or has seen an interview of any of those frothy fumers, it's an obvious inference: for people full of rage and certitude, they sure don't know much. Here's an article with proof (you might have to click past an annoying "welcome page"). The author was an economist for Ronald Reagan:

In short, no matter how one slices the data, the Tea Party crowd appears to believe that federal taxes are very considerably higher than they actually are, whether referring to total taxes as a share of GDP or in terms of the taxes paid by a typical family.

Tea Partyers also seem to have a very distorted view of the direction of federal taxes. They were asked whether they are higher, lower or the same as when Barack Obama was inaugurated last year. More than two-thirds thought that taxes are higher today, and only 4% thought they were lower; the rest said they are the same.

As noted earlier, federal taxes are very considerably lower by every measure since Obama became president. And given the economic circumstances, it's hard to imagine that a tax increase would have been enacted last year. In fact, 40% of Obama's stimulus package involved tax cuts. These include the Making Work Pay Credit, which reduces federal taxes for all taxpayers with incomes below $75,000 by between $400 and $800...

...Whatever the future of the Tea Party movement in American politics, it's a bad idea for so many participants to operate on the basis of false notions about the burden of federal taxation. It only takes a little bit of time to look at one's tax return to see what one is actually paying the Treasury, calculate the percentage of one's income that goes to taxes, and compare it with what was paid last year and the year before. People may then discover that their anger is misplaced and channel it into areas where it is more likely to bring about positive change.


Yeah. Like that'll happen. Still, the article deserves a full read.

How truly sad it is that such a large part of the national conversation is being dominated by the ill-informed. How destructive. How dispiriting to know that the Republican ideal of controlling education in order to produce dumbed-down sheep is so effective. How easy it is, as we see every day, to stir up rabble with lies. Such a simple formula: ridicule education as "elitist;" remove science and all ability to judge facts from education, preferably in the name of god; make up stuff; get an entire media outlet to repeat constantly; stir vigorously; drink deeply.

Brilliant. Effective. And it's killing us.

[Addendum: Need more proof? Want to see people who have no idea what they're talking about? Here they are, in all their glory:]




10 comments:

Frank Drackman said...

Umm Sid, might wanta check your Namenda Suplier...
Its mostly your Commie side bitchin about how the middle class pays all the taxes...heck I paid 6 figures to Uncle Sam last year...
and tell me how that middle class tax cuts workin for ya next year when the Bush Tax Cuts expire...
I even put a nifty calculator on my blog where you can figure out how much more you'll pay...
OK, its a little tricky, ask your Caregiver to do it...

Frank

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure you know more than anyone, Sid. That's why I'm surprised you haven't explained to us morons how proud you are of the way your party has to weasel its way to passing the pres's most important policy when he had unbeatable majorities. I just don't understand it.

jd

Sid Schwab said...

An unbroken string of off-point trollage, jd. Keep 'em coming. You should walk around with "QED" on your forehead.

I guess I should take pity on you though; you probably can't help it. So I'll point out something obvious to most people: unlike Republicans, Democrats actually think for themselves and don't vote in lockstep like every R in Congress. And whereas not a single R believes in compromise nor understands what democracy requires, there are, sadly, a few Ds who are similarly misinformed. By comparison, a small fraction.

And I HAVE talked about the parliamentary procedures. Among other things, pointing out how often Rs used the same ones. Presented with facts like that, you, of course, had a brain freeze and went off-topic even faster than usual.

Anonymous said...

"pointing out how often Rs used the same ones."

You're ducking the question. Are you proud of the way your party is doing this? Is this how you think the country should be run?

Even Obama said big bills shouldn't pass on just one vote. Well, he said it back then.

And your point was that we're stupider than you, right? I'm just asking to see your elevated thinking on this. You didn't have to call me names.

jd

Sid Schwab said...

Sensitive, huh, jd? I responded with more info than you usually provide, and in the spirit of your snark regarding my intellect.

I'd prefer that they not have to use parliamentary tricks, even if (or maybe because) they're the same ones used by Rs. It's pretty much unprecedented, though, that there is NO opposition support for ANYTHING this president is for. It speaks ill of the Rs, and says much about their priorities: mainly, no matter the damage to or needs of the country, to prevent Obama from having ANY success. I don't think it's ever been this bad.

So, given the obstructionism for its own sake, and given the undeniable need for reform, and given the incomprehensible refusal of some Ds to vote for it on the basis of abortion issues despite the fact that it changes nothing that's been in place already, I'm reluctantly okay with whatever they need to do. It's legal, it's been done before.

I think it's obvious from many posts here that I find both parties in Congress pretty wanting. It's also obvious that I'm a strong believer in the value of a robust opposition party. But when that party becomes as purely negative as the current Rs, devoid of any positive agenda, filled with birthers, creationists, global warming deniers, Christianists, textbook rewriters, proud liars, and unrepentant hypocrites, then I think the majority party must do what it has to do to get things done.

Given the venality of the current Congressional Rs, there's simply no choice. Imperfect as their bills might be, unimpressive as some D congresspeople are, it's undeniable they're actually trying to address serious problems with serious legislation. Until the Rs do the same, I say screw 'em. To put it as politely as possible.

Anonymous said...

I'm a senior who is a regular person who thinks all you "good old boys" should get your shit together instead of having this pissing contest and do what's best for your country instead of what's best for your sorry hides.....shame on all of you !

Sid Schwab said...

Not sure to whom that comment is directed, anonymous, but thanks for dropping by.

Anonymous said...

Now thanks for finally engaging (at least partially) rather than falling back to the "you sound like Fox" defense.

"...snark regarding my intellect."

Well, I apologize for not understanding that your post, which said:

"they sure don't know much"
"dominated by the ill-informed"
"dumbed-down sheep"

...etc. was not meant to say "you guys are stupid." Or maybe you meant "you guys are stupid and so am I." Anyhow, glad to have you clear up that we're as smart as you.

"Given the venality of the current Congressional Rs, there's simply no choice."

It's not those venal Republicans who are holding this up. There are plenty of dems who could have passed this fabulous bill a year ago. Unstoppable by venal Republicans. But.........no.

Only 35% or so of the country wants this to pass. That means that about a third of people who voted for Obama are against it. They voted for him knowing he wanted to do this. But they can see this is not the right bill.

"NO opposition support for ANYTHING this president is for"

The Republicans supported Obama in his Afghanistan policy (more so than his own party, in fact).

The truth is, the Republicans were locked out of the healthcare negotiations. Why support something they had no say in?

Now a lot of dems did support W in (I know you're not going to lie this) the Iraq war. Would you say that Hillary Clinton and John Kerry voted for the war because they thought it was a good idea, or out of a sense of comity (which you seem to want now). If the latter, did they really vote for the war when they knew it was a bad idea?

jd

Anonymous said...

Now thanks for finally engaging (at least partially) rather than falling back to the "you sound like Fox" defense.

"...snark regarding my intellect."

Well, I apologize for not understanding that your post, which said:

"they sure don't know much"
"dominated by the ill-informed"
"dumbed-down sheep"

...etc. was not meant to say "you guys are stupid." Or maybe you meant "you guys are stupid and so am I." Anyhow, glad to have you clear up that we're as smart as you.

"Given the venality of the current Congressional Rs, there's simply no choice."

It's not those venal Republicans who are holding this up. There are plenty of dems who could have passed this fabulous bill a year ago. Unstoppable by venal Republicans. But.........no.

Only 35% or so of the country wants this to pass. That means that about a third of people who voted for Obama are against it. They voted for him knowing he wanted to do this. But they can see this is not the right bill.

"NO opposition support for ANYTHING this president is for"

The Republicans supported Obama in his Afghanistan policy (more so than his own party, in fact).

The truth is, the Republicans were locked out of the healthcare negotiations. Why support something they had no say in?

Now a lot of dems did support W in (I know you're not going to like this) the Iraq war. Would you say that Hillary Clinton and John Kerry voted for the war because they thought it was a good idea, or out of a sense of comity (which you seem to want now). If the latter, did they really vote for the war when they knew it was a bad idea?

jd

Sid Schwab said...

The truth is, the Republicans were locked out of the healthcare negotiations. Why support something they had no say in?

Unmitigated bullshit. You sound just like Fox.

And, yeah, I do believe I know more than morons do. Not only that, it wasn't just I who said it. Sort of the, you know, point of the post.

Surprise! You ignore the facts in order to make falsehoods. Sort of like... Fox. Just like which, by the way, you sound.