Archive for September, 2012

Comparing the Platforms

Posted: September 5, 2012 in political

(Republican National Platform for 2012 vs. Democratic National Platform for 2012)

I have read through the platforms, as the parties posted them, and comment here on a few differences.

Italics are my comments. ML

1. Taxes

GOP

“To that end, we propose to: Extend the 2001 and 2003 tax relief
packages—commonly known as the Bush tax cuts—pending reform of the tax code, to keep tax rates from rising on income, interest, dividends, and capital gains;
Reform the tax code by reducing marginal tax rates by 20 percent across-the-board in a
revenue-neutral manner; Eliminate the taxes on interest, dividends, and capital gains altogether for lower and middle-income taxpayers; End the Death Tax; and
Repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax.”

Democrats

Cutting Waste, Reducing the Deficit, Asking All to Pay Their Fair Share

Under this section title are six paragraphs. Each one has at least one sentence about “tax cuts for the wealthy millionaires” and “everybody should pay their fair share”.

This is typical class warfare (in my opinion) and I am tired of hearing it. If you took EVERYTHING, (A FULL 100% OF IT) from those who make over $1 million it would not put a dent in the problem. If you really want FAIRNESS, reform the tax code and make it a flat tax. Just as an example say 7%. (I think that if you do away with ALL the freakin’ loopholes it could be less, but let’s use 7%) If I make $50K, 7 % would be $3500 and if you make $50 Million, 7% would be $3,500,000 and if you are only working part time and only make $5K, your tax would be $350. Now the democrats would yell, “That’s not FAIR, the lower income guy can’t afford $350”. But the TRUTH is, it doesn’t get any fairer than that. FAIRNESS is NOT what the democrats are after. ML

2. Spending

GOP

“We can preempt the debt explosion. Backed by a Republican Senate and House, our next President will propose immediate reductions in federal spending,
as a down payment on the much larger task of long-range fiscal control. We suggest a tripartite test for every federal activity.
First, is it within the constitutional scope of the federal government?
Second, is it effective and absolutely necessary?
And third, is it sufficiently important to justify borrowing, especially
foreign borrowing, to fund it?
Against those standards we will measure programs from international
population control to California’s federally subsidized high-speed train to nowhere, and terminate programs that don’t measure up.”

Democrats

The democrats call spending “investing”. I was going to count how many times they used the words invest, investment and investing in their platform, but I gave up when I hit 50 and wasn’t half way through yet. There are a couple of different ways of looking at spending and, to be fair, some economists think you can spend your way out of a recession. This is one of the fundamental differences between the parties. But I am of the belief that you don’t get out of a hole by continuing to dig. ML

3. Budget

GOP

“Republican Members of Congress have repeatedly tried to reform the budget process to make it more transparent and accountable, in particular by voting for a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution, following the lead of 33 States which have put that restraint into their own constitutions. We call for a Constitutional amendment requiring a super-majority for any tax increase with exceptions for only war and national emergencies, and imposing a cap limiting spending to the historical average percentage of GDP so that future Congresses cannot balance the budget by raising taxes.”

The “super majority” amendment falls short of a balanced budget amendment, which I think we need.  ML

Democrats

Despite the importance of this issue, the democrat platform has nothing on what they would do for a budget. If you do a search for the word “budget” most of the times that it turns up is as an attack on their description of a Republican budget.
The Democratically controlled Senate has not passed a budget in three years. Need I say more? ML

4. The Electoral College

GOP

“We oppose the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact or any other scheme to abolish or distort the procedures of the Electoral College. We recognize
that an unconstitutional effort to impose “national popular vote” would be a mortal threat to our federal system and a guarantee of corruption as every ballot box in every state would become a chance to steal the presidency.”

I disagree with this point. The president is running for the office of President of the US, not President of Ohio (or Florida or whatever state). For example, in 2008 my home state of NC voted 2,128,474 for McCain and 2,142,651 for Obama. That should have been counted, in my opinion, as over 2.1 million votes each instead of 15 electoral votes for Obama and none for McCain. There was a need for the Electoral College when it was established, but we are not so much a collection of individual states any longer, we are a nation. One vote should be one vote, whether one lives in New York, California, or Wyoming. If we do away with this antiquated system, we don’t have to hear the same old crap every year about “it’s going to come down to whoever wins (Ohio, Florida, insert state name here)”. ML

Democrats
Democrats don’t mention the Electoral College in their platform, but rest assured they don’t want to change the system either. Both parties have invested t0o much time and energy into learning to work the system and neither wants to change it.

Same problem from both parties in regard to candidates that are not from either of the two major parties. ML

5. Energy

GOP

‘Domestic Energy Independence:
An “All of the Above” Energy Policy’

Democrats—

“All-of-the-Above Energy Policy”

Both parties talk a good game in the energy department. Both mention energy independence, but democrats stop short of: 1) using more coal, 2) building more nuclear power plants, and, mainly, 3) drilling for more domestic oil. Don’t get me wrong, wind and solar, even geo-thermal and other alternative energies are great, let’s do all we can to use them, but they are not going to replace fossil fuels any time soon, so let’s be realistic. ML

These are just a few of the differences that a quick glance uncovered. You can go online and find the platforms for yourself, and I hope you do. In closing I would like to quote from the Democratic platform:

“This election is not simply a choice between two candidates or two political parties, but between two fundamentally different paths for our country and our families.”

I could not agree more.

Vaya Con Dios,
Michael Leffew

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