Comments


  • Ernie has made clear his point - corporations do not pay taxes people do. Why on earth would you want to tax employment or the entity that creates employment? Could someone, anyone answer that for me?

    That goes for both corporate income tax and FICA taxes paid both by the employer and the employee. FICA revenue goes into general revenue and is spent at the pleasure of our Congressmen for what ever purpose they want, so I don't see why it has to be a direct tax on employment. Take it out of income taxes, let these hidden taxes see the light of day.

    April 9, 2009 at 1 p.m.

  • Ok, so I decided to chop my response in two. First it gives readers a break and second, I'm fear the old "timeout" period remains irrespective of all the new so-called "improvements" here.

    As to the economic effect of the housing market on the curent crisis, there's no doubt that in the US at least, the housing market was a huge factor in the making of the current economic miasma. While many factors led to the housing bubble and its inevitable bursting, government intervention - badly - in that market place did indeed play a huge and detrimental role. Suffice it to say that the misnomer so freely bandied about in congress and government, "affordable housing", effectively means exactly the opposite.

    Federal policy did not make "affordable housing" available to responsible purchasers, it made quite *un*affordable housing available to practically ANY purchaser. And I see no need to provide evidence of that simple statement other than to ask the reader to look around.

    The CDS/CDO derivative's part in the soup of the mortgage mess is a question of whether the proverbial chicken or egg appeared first. Were CDSs and CDOs improvisations by the mortgage industry and Wall Street to further capitalize on an untenable market phenomenon or their nervous reaction to CYA when they began to realize that an untenable and illiquid government that claimed to back so many untenable mortgages was a house of straw about to be set ablaze?

    Either way the end result was pretty much the same; boom became bust. One glaring difference in this bust is that the banks, mortgagors and financiers - at least some of them - survived not so much because they'd put the monkey on someone else's back before the crash but rather because the government jumped in to take everyone's monkey and put it on that seemingly ever-available back of national debt. Because the government is in the singularly enviable position of having the ability to make, change and alter "the rules," it isn't bound by them - or at least fancies itself not to be.

    There are however some rules, natural rules, that can't be altered at the politicians' whim. One of those is that the bills *will* come due.

    Ernie

    April 9, 2009 at 10:28 a.m.

  • Apologizing in advance for the likely length here but, of late, I don't get a lot of chances to keep up on this site.

    Yes, Mike, I have been promoting the fact that corporations do not pay taxes for some time. For a similar amount of time I've been attempting to explain to you, in the simplest terms I can muster, why that fact is. At some point the phrase "pearls before swine" comes to mind.

    But for the new poster who asked, let me give it one more shot.

    Raising taxes on a company, whether it be corporation, conglomerate, partnership or Mom 'n Pop operation, is just raising another of that business's costs of production. It's basically no different than expecting the price of peaches to increase when Georgia has a late season frost or expecting to pay more for a loaf of bread after an increase in the price of wheat.

    As I recall, at one point you counter-argued that with a statement that it could then be argued that the company that paid its employees paid their taxes since all the taxes paid by the employee were paid with money the employee got from the company. A worthy shot across the bow perhaps but completely inapplicable. Employees' paychecks are money earned by the employee's efforts and they, in turn, have no "customer" to which to pass those costs.

    So I say again, increasing taxes on companies is simply a backhanded method of increasing taxes on individuals. And Max is dead right; anyone who proposes increasing taxes on businesses is putting jobs in jeopardy. Any time a company's expenses to produce a product or service rise beyond the point that the produced goods or service can remain competitive in the marketplace there are only two alternatives for the company; cut costs to regain a competitive position (i.e. cut jobs) or get out of the market place (i.e. cut ALL jobs).

    And once again I must take exception to your "a free market left unfettered won't work" assertion. Your conclusion must be based entirely on supposition and models, completely devoid of any empirical evidence. There have been no "unfettered free markets" existent in your or my lifetimes on which to base such a conclusion.

    Perhaps you're right in your hypothesis. I, on the other hand, would like to actually give a free market a shot and see if it'd work.

    Ernie

    April 9, 2009 at 10:03 a.m.

  • @#$%&! This go-darned dratfangle keeps cutting out every time I try to write something additional. ! I wanted to say, "Max," that I will, of course, not use any names, or offer any way by which viewers and/or listeners might identify you. I merely want to use the example your comments respresent.

    Thanks!

    April 9, 2009 at 9:02 a.m.

  • "Max," I would like to use your remarks here in an up-coming script I've been asked to write for the American Lyceum, demonstrating as they do the strange witches' brew public opinion in this effectively benighted nation has come to be.

    You remind me of a remark a grandfather made when I was a kid, that about a local guy who had just graduated from college and full of himself. "Larry knows a hell of a lot," gramp said. "The trouble is that most of it's wrong."

    Go back and review the reasoning inherent in your remarks concerning how taxation of corporations proceeds. Begin, of course, by telling us here how it is that a dollar comes to be - the process. How does the treasury decide to print a dollar - on what basis?

    Then explain how the people who own the money can be taxed for it.

    Then, too, your assertion that corporations are owned by the stockholders is logical absurdity. That is akin to saying the people who buy stocks own the stock market. Come on, a guy who writes as well as you do MUST be able to think better than you seem to (stipulated that I realize it's not your fault - you have simply been convinced of so much that isn't true).

    And if you would be so kind, please paragraph (no offense meant - it's just that my tired old eyes can't stand the strain of having to separate all that without a break and I really want to read everything you've written.

    April 9, 2009 at 8:49 a.m.

  • In response to your response SPOCK hehe. Look the problem is we have the most convoluted schizophrenic maze of tax laws probably in the world. I think taxation in this country is a combination of revenue and policy control to dictate consumer behavior. And yes corporations do pay tax and you pay tax on what you earn in that corporation. There is double taxation and sometimes triple taxation. I would love to follow a dollar from birth to death and see what percent is taxed along the way, I am sure it would be frightening. I look to the day that congress legislates taxes into a point of phase canceling confusion and contradiction until the whole thing collapses like a house of cards. When things collpase such as the financial crisis we are experiencing its not always a bad thing. Sometimes things get so askew that we just need to start over. Re-tool.
    Look, you say that the tax on corporations is really just a consumer tax, since the corporate profits started out as consumer dollars. But that’s true of everyone’s profit, every dollar passes through many hands. What is a corporation, a corporation is a non-entity or more specifically is a special entity for the purposes of liability. Taxation is also in there as well. So who owns a corporation? Shareholders, who are people. This can be sole owner or a company that has millions of those owners. It is those owners of the corporation, and there are preferred stock and common stock, etc. so not all owners are equal, that own the company. They reap any profit benefit but also get hit when there is a loss. When you raise the corporate tax, you are simply raising the tax on the shareholders, not the corporation. When a company can no longer raise the price for a product because of market forces and their costs go up they simply do the other thing a company can do to stay profitable: reduce costs. And what is the number one cost for a company? Employees. So anyone advocating increasing the corporate tax rate is really putting jobs at risk-maybe even their own.
    To me, one of the strangest things about all this is that the many people who have 401ks, IRAs, and other retirement or pension accounts, who put some of their savings in the stock market don’t realize that they are part owners of all the traded companies that comprise your portfolio. So when they buy into the rhetoric of raising taxes on corporations they are actually raising taxes on their own investments.

    April 9, 2009 at 8:27 a.m.

  • Lively debate, what? "Clintus," is socialism doesn't work, we'd better hope the corporations don't find out - the stock market will crash, never to recover.

    To whomever it was who remarked concerning "Rollinstone's" ad hominem attacks I can only suggest that reading anything he writes here will tell you that he is an addict in that regard - just can't stop. That he happens to be right on something of what he says - derivatives and several things more the like - concerning the history of our ecomomy proves that he could do without the ad hominem - he's clearly got a good intellect.

    To whomever said "corporations don't pay taxes" is a myth, tell me - tell us all - how you make a corporation pay a tax he doesn't pass on to the wage-earner. "Splain dat one to me, Luci."

    Tell us how people who are willing to spend the billions cited in today's Advocate article ("Companies reap lobbying rewards") to get "tax breaks" and fiscal-political power even U.S. states and foreign nations don't have can be taxed. While you're it, tell us how a corporation like that makes a profit.

    But before any of that, someone tell us all how a nation inflicted with an Operation MOCKINGBIRD media like ours can deliberate rationally on anything? How can anyone believe he lives in a democracy or republic when something like lobbying exists, a tax system like ours exists, and a media like ours goes on decades after decade either silent or actually promoting it all?

    I'm listening with bated breath - I talk too much anyway.

    April 9, 2009 at 7:58 a.m.

  • Mike said, "You still want to ignore the collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) compounded by the enormous amount of leverage applied by big hedge funds. CDOs are derivatives — synthetic financial instruments derived from another asset..(Toxic loans.) that is at the very heart of this problem in the United States and abroad."

    The heart of the problem is not CDO's the heart of the problem is subprime loans and credit default swaps that regulators failed to regulate. That was AIG's problem they got too levered in CDS's and when loans started defaulting they were caught with their pants down.

    Elliot Spizer, when he wasn't out soliciting prostitutes, was busy with his personal vendetta to oust Hank Greenberg from AIG. When Hank was there he manage the CDS's to prevent taking on too much risk. After he was forced to resign and Spitzer got his choice as AIG's CEO this risk management ceased to be practiced.

    This combined with the huge bubble in the low end valued real estate produced by the government and the Fed has created this tale of woe.

    April 9, 2009 at 7:22 a.m.

  • Mike,

    After looking at your blog post that started this string, I wondered what your take is on Obama's gaffe of BOWing to the King of Saudi Arabia? See youtube vid -http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LEUif1--r38&feature=player_embedded

    April 8, 2009 at 8:34 p.m.

  • Well scarlett, most people wanted them that way, if you are in a discussion, you do not have to scroll all the way down to see replies to your comment, there at the top. It makes for a better flow of discussions, IMO

    April 8, 2009 at 7 p.m.

  • When/will the Advocate fix the posting of comments so that you don't have to start at the bottom and work up in order to read them sequentially ??

    I know this is off topic but I hoped that if I put it in under enough blogs/stories I might get an answer.

    To the Advocate...NO I do not care for most of your new web page arrangements.

    April 8, 2009 at 6:55 p.m.

  • LOL...Only a true hypocrite would blame the policies of a president out of office TWENTY ONE YEARS and long dead on our current problems. Thanks for remaining solid, Mike.

    At issue is the sell out of Bush to Congress in order to wage his WAR, in exchange for signing off on any spending Congress wanted. Include that with 9/11, Congress' lack of oversight of fiscal policy and Bush's lack of backbone on his former "limited gov't works" and you have a broke country.

    Obama won. Give him his head and see if it works. I'm dubious that spending our way to prosperity is the way, but we're broke as hell finacially and morally anyway. Give him a couple of years and see if the mid terms give him a mandate to continue.

    But will the capitalism and the Bill of Rights survive? Dirty secret folks. We have been socialists for decades, and the Bill as been eroded constantly. Will thrive and prosper? Or sink and decline? The next few years will tell.

    April 8, 2009 at 6:36 p.m.

  • yeah the link posting worked!!!!!

    April 8, 2009 at 6:34 p.m.

  • oh yeah, still haven't got the link posting down yet, but anyway....

    http://www.nytimes.com/1990/10/03/bus...

    April 8, 2009 at 6:33 p.m.

  • All that being said, Bush 1 started criminal complaints against the S/L, now however, all the banks, insurance , auto companies not only get away with dealing with "toxic assets" but get a bailout and if approved, the said "toxic assets" removed from there books.

    April 8, 2009 at 6:21 p.m.

  • Gee Mike,

    Why weren't you in Washington instead of pontificating from Victoria Texas, after the fact.

    It seems to me, back in S/L fiasco that in fact, as you call them "toxic assets", where involved. If i remember correctly, a loan for a condo development in Port O'Connor led to the downfall of South Texas Savings and Loan.
    Again if I remember correctly, the developer borrowed about 400% of what the actual cost of the condos where.

    The disclosure of a list of 100 savings institutions selected by the Bush Administration for priority prosecution shows that criminal investigations are under way in a number of high-profile savings and loan institutions.

    Among them are Silverado, Lincoln Savings and Loan of Irvine, Calif., whose former owner, Charles H. Keating Jr., has been jailed awaiting trial on state charges; Centrust Savings of Miami and Columbia Savings and Loan of Beverly Hills, Calif.

    Here is the list of the 100 priority investigations:

    American Diversified Savings Bank, Costa Mesa, Calif.; American Savings and Loan Association, Stockton, Calif.; Ameriway Savings Association, Houston; Beverly Hills Savings and Loan, Beverly Hills; Brookside Savings and Loan, Los Angeles; Caguas Central Federal Savings, Puerto Rico; Cal America, Walnut Creek, Calif.; Capital Savings, Arkansas; Capitol Federal Bank for Savings, Illinois;* Cardinal Savings, Newport, N.C.; Carver Savings and Loan, Escondido, Calif.; Cascade Savings, Everett, Wash.; CenTrust, Miami.

    Multiple investigation: Century City Savings and Loan, Los Angeles; Multibanc, Dallas; Sooner Federal Savings, Tulsa, Okla.

    Multiple investigation: Champion Savings, Houston; First State Savings, Texas; Victoria Savings, Texas.

    Charter Savings, Newport Beach, Calif.; Citizens Savings and Loan, Oregon; City Federal, Bedminster, N.J.; City Savings and Loan, Texas;* Colonial Savings, New Jersey; Columbia Federal, Connecticut; Columbia Savings and Loan, Beverly Hills, Calif.; Commodore Savings, Dallas; Commonwealth Savings and Loan, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.*

    Community Federal Savings and Loan, St. Louis; Community Savings and Loan, Fond du Lac, Wis.; Concordia Federal, Lansing, Ill.; Consolidated Savings, Irvine, Calif.; Continental Savings and Loan, Bellair, Tex.; Cooper River Federal, South Carolina;* Cornerstone Savings, Houston; Crossroads Savings and Loan, Tulsa.

    Multiple investigation: Deposit Trust Savings, Louisiana; People's Homestead Federal, Louisiana.

    Enterprise Federal, Louisiana; First Atlantic Savings, South Plainfield, N.J.; First California Savings.

    Multiple investigation: First Network Savings, Los Angeles; Viking Savings, California.

    First Savings of America, Illinois; First Savings Bank, Diamondville, Wyo.; First Savings Bank and Trust of Missouri; First Savings and Loan of Toledo, Ohio.

    And on and on, just a partial list By DAVID JOHNSTON, Special to The New York Times
    Published: Wednesday, October 3, 1990
    Almost 19 years ago, hmmmm

    April 8, 2009 at 6:13 p.m.

  • Rollingstone
    You still want to ignore the collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) compounded by the enormous amount of leverage applied by big hedge funds. CDOs are derivatives — synthetic financial instruments derived from another asset..(Toxic loans.) that is at the very heart of this problem in the United States and abroad.

    Wanting a homeownership society is probably a goal for any president, but that does not excuse the greed and corruption that was done by the Realtors, bankers and hedge fund managers.

    Government gets involved such as F.D.I.C, SEC, bankruptcy laws, and acts as a consumer protection agency. That’s good thing…We have laws against robbing banks but it still happens. Like I said the offices are understaffed and they do not know a thing about derivatives.

    The auto industry is yelling; fix health care cost and we will be profitable…They have too many variables that are going against them…(1)credit crunch(2)8.5 % unemployed will not be buying soon(3)Too many models(4)consumer spending is down..I know the government is not ,nor do they want to be in the auto industry.

    The Reagan, Bush, Clinton, and Bush II eras were bubbles waiting to burst…They never repaired the infrastructure, fixed education or health-care or switched to alternative fuels….Sure the Clinton administration and the GOP had balanced budgets and had surpluses but they never solved the real problems, because wages have become stagnant, health care cost have risen about 200% since 1994.

    I don’t hate the free market, I just don’t bow down to it, because I am from an era where the company store, provided health care ,401K matching funds, a bonus, and a yearly wage increase. I did not care what the CEO made because I was well compensated…That has changed with outsourcing, reduced benefits, and stagnant wages.

    The socialism label is just a scare tactic against government protection..I am sure the Health Care industry would love to operate without regulations, the FDA, or government auditors. It’s not going to happen nor do we want it to.

    I believe the government (we the people) can commingle with the private sector.

    A difference in ideology should not make us mortal enemies.

    April 8, 2009 at 5:45 p.m.

  • This fiasco we are currently in is very similar to the SNL fiasco during the 80's except now things are really screwed up. I will repeat the problem was and still is bad mortgages and the steps taken to reduce the risks of making these mortgages. All these bad mortgages were done at the behest of the federal government. Yes even Bush shares in this blame because he also encouraged affordable housing.

    When the government gets involved as they have, small problems become very big problems. You seem to think more regulation is the answer, I don't. Regulation did not stop the collapse of ENRON. The regulators got involved after the damage had been done just like with the Madoff scandal.

    The government interference in the car industry will I'm certain just make the final correction even worse. They are mandating what kind of cars to make that currently are not selling - what now? Making and selling cars is a complex business, way beyond the capabilities of the government, any government.

    And finally the free market that you disparage thrived during Reagan's administration and also Clinton's even with the bursting of the dot com bubble and the collapse of ENRON at the end of his term. There is really no good alternative to a free market. The people that live under socialism by and large hate it. The free market has its faults no one denies it, but so does government control, which is far worse and more corrupt.

    April 8, 2009 at 4:51 p.m.

  • Rollingstone
    You just can’t admit that the Ronald Reagan’s free market,( left unfettered) will not work ,so you only blame Fannie & Freddy…If that were true ,how many zombie banks ,do we have today? The administration won’t release the results of the recent bank stress test…Why?...I have seen documentary after documentary about this world crisis and your version is not supported…You can rid two birds with one stone by just blaming Fannie & Freddie..(1)You can blame on the government (2)You can blame it on Barney Frank, ChrisDodd, and Frank Rains…You ignore the greed of Wall Street and the need to rein them in.

    I do not call everyone that disagrees with me a right-winger..I did not call Roberttx or Spock and several others right-wingers and they disagreed with me…..IMO a right –winger is an ideologue that believes their ideology is the only answer…Hence right wing conservative.

    You are consistently anti-government, always pro-private sector and the the private sector can do no wrong in your eyes…That’s an ideologue, because most of the country does not feel that way.

    I always admit I don’t know the answer but I do have faith in this administration…Guess what ,I am not alone.

    April 8, 2009 at 3:19 p.m.

  • I called you a liberal, anyone that disagrees with you is a right winger, that's my "game, I guess."
    We had the SNL fiasco that was before the repeal of Glass-Steagal. Then we had the collapse of the dot.com bubble, that had nothing to do with banking.

    What got us into this current situation was the government getting into the home mortgage business. Private banks got into the sub-prime mortgage business in order to compete with the government subsidized Fannie and Freddie and at the government's insistence.

    They made money at it. Fannie and Freddie decided to also compete in this business all with the blessing and encouragement of Congress and the government. Since they were government back, this was like playing with the house's money, the rest is history. We are in this mess because of bad government policy. Blaming it on Wall Street is a cop out for those who are really responsible, they know who they are.

    I have always been a deficit and spending hawk even when the Republicans were in control - like I said before it's the spending. As Cheney said deficits don't matter, that is as long as you can find suckers to buy our debt at low interest rates and keep bank rolling us. Well I think the party's over. Obama has taken Cheney's advice to an extreme, I fear for our future.

    April 8, 2009 at 2:42 p.m.

  • Rollingstone
    As always, I won’t engage your game of ad hominem attacks.
    I know being in the minority is frustrating, but elections matter.
    I am not looking backward and I know Larry Summers, Timothy Geithner, and Robert Rubin (Clinton administration) had a lot to do with deregulating firms like AIG. I have stated that The Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999 did away with restrictions on the integration of banking, insurance and stock trading imposed by the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 and we have been having financial crisis’s every fifteen years or so since then….I am disappointed this administration has not invested the matter, and I have a feeling that it involves Goldman Sachs and Citi Bank..I believe in letting the cards fall on whoever is responsible and changing the rules once and for all, so we don’t have to keep having this crisis…

    You are completely wrong, this world financial crisis is not about GDP ten years from now, nor is it a left, right issue.
    I did not claim Madoff got by because lack of regulation…What I said was that Harry Markopolos, repeatedly warned the Securities and Exchange Commission that Bernard Madoff, was running a Ponzi scheme....I am not say Mr. Cox was crooked because I know the SEC is unstaffed and they do have the MIT accountants needed to catch those schemes.

    I did say a couple of months ago in a blog, that Bank of America was forced to take the money because of fear; consumers would not do business with any of the 15 largest banks that took the money….The context I was using in reply to Robertx was “beggars cannot be choosy.”
    Funny, right-wingers are now becoming deficit hawks, after an eight year absence.

    Again I am on record saying if the economy does not improve by November of this year, Obama and the democrats will pay a price….That’s how the system works, in fact the president said he will deserve getting voted out of office. What I am saying, by trial and error I believe this administration has the brain power,expertice,and experience to turn this economy around….You don’t agree ,you might be right but right now the majority of America is giving this president the benefit of the doubt according to all the polls I have seen.

    April 8, 2009 at 1:58 p.m.

  • regulators are a huge part of the problem. madoff probably did the same thing they do in o/g when dealing with regulators, buy them women, trips, gifts and scholarships for their kids.

    April 8, 2009 at 1:14 p.m.

  • Mike, you and the rest of your liberal cohorts want to return to the Clinton years. Well so do I in a way. During that time federal spending reached a low of 18.2% of the GNP. This was the lowest it has been in the last 30 years and probably longer. This year it will be about 28% of GNP, and BO's budget has it leveling out at about 23%. He assumes of course that his adventures in Pakistan don't turn into a quagmire along with some of his other forlorn hopes.

    You claim that Madoff got by because there was a lack of regulation. That is completely false. There was more than enough regulations in place, the problem is the regulators - they always seem to be the last to know.

    You say that the banks came hat in hand begging for a bailout. Some did but most didn't they were forced to take the money, so what you said in this regard is also false.

    And finally you seem confident that the government can repeal the law of supply and demand in many areas particularly health care - I wish us luck with that.

    April 8, 2009 at 11:58 a.m.

  • Compensating for the market is a business decision and the corporate have not been changed in years.

    I don’t have anything against the free market but I am not so blind, that I cannot see that greed and deregulation has put the idea that the free market can go unfettered to rest.

    You assume that I even know any pious liberal think tank….

    This is a world financial crisis that depends on imports/exports and a strong dollar to exist. The last two administrations have put in measures to divert a depression and deflation. I am optimistic that our country will start moving out of this recession by the end of the 4th quarter of this year. As always, the lagging high unemployment numbers won’t start to come down until the middle of next year…I will not be gloating, because we will not know what measures turned this economy around, but everyone will have their own spin.

    April 8, 2009 at 11:24 a.m.

  • Clintusmaximus
    Where do I start? …George W. Bush had a 36% approval, so the entire country was pretty much fed up with his incompetence…I guess you are in that elite 36%.

    Do I expect the loyal opposition to give President Barack Obama a free pass? Gosh I hope not, a dissenting view or even an alternative idea would be refreshing, instead of the babble coming from the GOP.

    I believe an adult with a 66% approval is man enough to admit their mistakes of the past, learn from them, and go in a different direction. Having a dialogue of understanding and mutual respect will go a lot further than “bring them on.”…IMO

    Why do I need to view a beheading video? I don’t need any special prop to know that snorting cocaine is bad for me.
    President Obama is meeting with the same heads of state that the President Bush met with, not the terrorist in the field. We do not torture; nor do we lower our standards to those that are using 9th century methods.

    If we are not going to try diplomacy, then we need to reinstitute the draft and pass a war tax to pay for the constant war. We could exempt the war veterans that have served and the current troops and their families.

    April 8, 2009 at 10:55 a.m.

  • MIke - "The part about passing the tax to its customer is just a business decision,"

    Have you ever ran a business? Its not a business decision its called compensating for the market. When the market changes you adjust your business accordingly to do anything otherwise would be silly. And you say free market capitalists like its a bad word? What exactly do you have against freedom? I can give you a list of places you could live with a more socialist lifestyle to your liking. I am sure you would be much happier there having their governments make decisions for you so you can live life blissfully free of the ravages of choice. You know for eons, economics has done its thing, like nature, regardless of the aristocratic, pious liberal think tanks you think so highly of. When a market is no longer "free" it will fail, everytime. We are just so blind in this country because we havent experienced hardships like some countries have through politically meddling until economic failure. But I assure you my friend its coming, just keep touting your praises for ole Barry Hussien and well talk again in 4 years so I can say "I told you so"

    April 8, 2009 at 10:36 a.m.

  • I don’t believe this whole G20 Summit is necessary at all. When I look at some of the topics and leaders, I see anti-protectionist measures, regulatory reform, tax-havens crack downs, IMF reform, stronger role for emerging economies, and new stimulus proposals. These are all things that should be dealt with by local governments not international organizations. Just because a bunch of corporate international bankers have skewed the world marketplace so much does not mean that everyone has to be a part of this international organization to survive. Haven't these people ever heard of teleconferencing? Isit still the 20th century?
    You know what angers me most is the way Obama and Brown has hugged these financial monsters when they should all have actually been kicked out to change the culture at banks and financial institutions and set a strong precedent for others. It’s even more amazing when those protesting in London are dubbed by the media and ministers as hard core anti-capitalists. Really, are these people capitalists or socialists? I guess they are neither. These are people who have lost their jobs and their homes and have seen their near and dear ones suffer. They are angry and helpless. If someone who has been wronged protests for justice then dub him as anti capitalist so as to deprive him of any public sympathy. American drive-by media has become increasingly disgusting and insensitive. What should have been a fight for justice and regulation is now protrayed as a fight between capitalists and anti capitalists to dilute any public opinion in favour of regulations and protect the blessed ones. Kudos to you Mr. Obama and the G20 nations. As always you have been brilliant in pulling off another sham.

    April 8, 2009 at 10:26 a.m.

  • Ernie
    You have been trying to peddle that “corporations don’t pay taxes” myth for years. That is just a line the free market capitalist use to reduce the tax rate.

    A corporation is just a business organization and it an entity separate from its owners. The incorporated company has a separate legal standing from its owners and its own tax rate. The part about passing the tax to its customer is just a business decision, much like vendor price changes, employee benefits, and dividend cuts.

    Roberttx
    While I agree that the government should not structure salaries of private industry ,I think in this case they should…..Wall Street,banks,AIG, and GMC came hat in hand to the government(we the people)but their leadership failed…Is the government (we the people) supposed to fork over the money without any restrictions?

    Spock
    I understand the point you are making but we did have a few people that shouted from the rooftops like the Madoff whistleblower and former Comptroller General David Walker but our greedy side tuned them out. Guilty, I liked my 1990s 401K portfolio and I did not pay any attention to those that were warning us.

    April 8, 2009 at 10:18 a.m.

  • Moaning and groaning, thats a laugh. While bush was ruining the country you all but wanted his head, and now were supposed to give Barry Hussien a pass? Grow up. Pundits and talking heads are exactly that, the fact that it bothers you so much obviously rings with some truth, and the fact that your not a little preturbed that this kid (and I say kid because experience wise, hes a kid politically) is overseas saying americans are arrogant and apologizing for us to a bunch of dictators and closet marxists? We are the only truly free country left, which is why everyone comes here. And to clarify, no one ever said we were at war with muslims, we are at war with muslim extremists, and next time you give any credence to that group and whine about torture I implore to watch a video of some of these savages sawing the head off a live hostage and then tell me of your compassion and need for dilpomacy. I agree, a dose of reality would do you a great deal of good sir

    April 8, 2009 at 9:13 a.m.

  • Ernie. Help me here. If corporations pay zero taxes, where does the millions of dollars worth of taxes the city of Victoria and our school districts receive from the area petrochemical plants>

    April 8, 2009 at 6:58 a.m.

  • Corporations do not pay taxes. Ever. Period.

    People pay taxes. People who work and have an income pay personal taxes. Individuals who buy the goods on WalMart's shelves pay sales taxes. The people who buy the goods corporations produce pay corporate taxes. The people who utilize the services corporations provide pay corporate taxes. In order of appearance the above are extorted, collected and, the last two examples, hidden.

    It is as fundamental an economic reality as there being 100 cents in a dollar.

    If the governments that collect taxes were completely open they would simply extort 50% of every worker's income from the source before the worker even received his check, let alone cashed what's left, and be done with it. That would, of course, receive loud, long and vociferous opposition. It's much more intricate and detailed to take the same 50% in small incremental steps but it allows the same reality to continue practically unabated.

    Ernie

    April 7, 2009 at 10:37 p.m.

  • the more obama and giethner 'talk', i'm wondering if ireland's 13% coporate flat tax rate starts looking better and better to us companies.

    the gov't has zero business setting salaries in private industry, bail out money or not

    April 7, 2009 at 10:02 p.m.

  • I know this is going to sound offensive, but I really don't mean to put down any of the first three people who have commented on this blog. I would love one of these days to be able to talk to a few people who know these men, maybe even a spouse or ex-spouse, and see where their hearts are really at.

    April 7, 2009 at 9:30 p.m.

  • Mike, it astonished me that the public is willing to be persuaded by anything U.S. television and its incredible pundits, analysts, and the rest say. These characters on varous television networks are wrong so often - does no one ever go back and check what they report and say otherwise? - that giving any credit to anything they say is symptomatic of altered mental state (usually known as propaganda). This has been going on for more than half a century, and still the public listens. Just amazing!

    Where were all the people know giving us all the advice about the recession BEFORE the economic collapse, the bailout, and all the rest?

    I've always thought the people who paid good money for and read the check-out lane tabloids were benighted. Now its the entire public.

    April 7, 2009 at 9:09 p.m.

  • Spock
    I agree with your, consider the source statement, but Sean Hannity’s quote is rational to many on the right….I have seen variations of his words in this forum, Fox News and right-wing guests on CNN…They genuinely think a mea culpa on foreign soil is a sign of weakness and resentment of the United States of America..They call it “blame America first.”

    I did give another example, Newt Gingrich…I don’t agree with Newt’s politics but I always thought he was a great philosopher; when it came to free market ideas….That electromatic pulse idea was way out in left field, because he never mentioned the consequence of failure …The North Korean missile test was a failure (that was predictable) but if we would have used Newt’s idea, our failure would have been the one the world would still be talking about.

    April 7, 2009 at 9:30 a.m.

  • I could (as many here will attest) go on an on, but I'll satisfy myself by noting that the use of Sean Hannity's name - to say nothing of quotes - in a conversation concerning anything purporting to be rational is little short of offensive.

    To imply that anyone in the conversation might actually (and soberly) consider anything that moron says is to imply the listener is likewise an idiot. Good grief!

    April 7, 2009 at 8:34 a.m.

  • I hear you Pilot, but unfortunately after the Y2K scare; companies were made to believe the software engineers from India, who work long hours, little pay, and no benefits are indispensable.

    As you well know, Microsoft, Intuit and others are using the Indian Call Centers for all our consumer tech problems…A reason we might want to keep Pakistan from bombing India.

    I heard of CAT scan images being read overnight in India, and the results being on the desk of an American doctor, when he arrives at his office the next day.

    BTW I don't like the new format...

    April 6, 2009 at 5:18 p.m.