Archive for the ‘Conservative Bullshit Debunked’ Category

As usual, we are coming up on a bunch of deadlines for the government.  We have the problem of not yet having a budget for this fiscal year.  We have the looming debt ceiling deadline.  We have the National Highway Fund about to run out of money.  And there are others.

The budget and the debt ceiling are the most critical of these deadlines.  Republicans are always trying to place restrictions on both, and another government shutdown is looming, as early as November 5.  That is when the Treasury Department says we won’t be able to pay our bills without raising the debt ceiling.

Unfortunately, this all comes together with an election year.  Maybe that will be a good thing since Republicans who are hoping to hold on to the Senate and gain the White House won’t be stupid enough to cause a shutdown or default on our loans.  But, with all of the crazies in their party, anything can happen.

Which also brings us to the current crop of Presidential hopefuls on the Republican side of the aisle.  I bring this up now, because it is time to prove to the American People that their economic plans for this country are based on fairy dust and voodoo.

First there is Jeb Bush who claims that his massive tax cuts for the wealthy will result in a 4% GDP growth rate forever.  Then there is Mike Huckabee who claims he will bring about a whopping 6% GDP growth.  We have Rand Paul with his massive tax cuts claiming the economy will grow significantly enough to balance the budget in five years.  And, Marco Rubio claims he will balance the budget in ten years.

You only need to look at recent history to prove these claims are bogus.  It began with the so-called “golden years” of Reaganomics.  Ronald Reagan promised massive tax cuts, especially for the wealthy, and promised that there would be so many jobs created, wealth would “trickle-down” to us poor working slobs.  It didn’t work.  He actually had to increase taxes later because of a massive recession.

George H. W. Bush tried the same economic plan to boost his Presidency.  He even promised “read my lips.  No new taxes.”  Oops!  He had to raise taxes again which led to his defeat to Bill Clinton.  Then we have George W. Bush who inherited a balanced budget.  There was even a surplus after Bill Clinton’s terms in office.

It didn’t take George W. to shrink that surplus and create a massive deficit.  He immediately cut taxes, again mostly on the wealthy, and spent like there was no tomorrow.  Even when he started two wars, he refused to raise taxes to pay for them.  As a result, the deficit ballooned.

See, the problem with tax cuts is that it starves the federal government of money.  The debt ceiling needs to be raised every year to keep up with the deficits and debt that these Republican Presidents laid on us.  It is impossible, mathematically, to cut revenues and increase spending.  Yet, Republicans always seem to find a way to raise Defense Spending.

Each of the plans proposed by the candidates I mentioned above will cut revenues between $5 Trillion and $10 Trillion in the next 10 years!  In the meantime, Congress has already passed a massive Defense Spending Bill that raises Defense budget significantly.  How do you pay for such a massive increase in Defense Spending if you plan to cut revenues?

Well, Carly Fiorina seems to have the answer.  She claims she will introduce a budget that is Zero Based!  That is a budget process that sometimes works for corporations, but it was tried once for the federal government and failed miserably.

If you are unaware of how a Zero Based Budget works, let me explain it simply.  At the start of each fiscal year, every department must put together a budget where all the money is spent.  You must also prove that you need every dollar you are asking to get.  This takes months of planning.  I know, I had to follow it during my time in the Coast Guard.  It was a nightmare.

The other drawback to Zero Based Budgets is that at the end of the fiscal year, departments often find themselves with a little extra money.  They then go on a spending spree because if you don’t use all of the money you asked for at the beginning of the year, you lose that money in the next fiscal year.

All of the Republican candidates talk about eliminating the Estate Tax.  They call this the “death penalty tax.”  You may think this is a good idea.  You don’t want to have to pay taxes on your parent’s estate.  But, you already don’t pay taxes on the estate unless it is worth more than $1 million.  There is an exemption up to $1 million on this tax.

So, the only people who will really gain by the elimination of the Estate Tax are the wealthy.  Surprise, surprise!  The elimination of this tax simply means that rich people will be able to pass on all of their wealth to their children without them having to pay any taxes on it.

I find it ironic that many Social Security recipients must pay federal and state income taxes on their Social Security income.  Yet, Republicans want the extremely wealthy to leave billions of dollars to children without having to pay a dime in taxes on it.  Remember, the main principle behind the Estate Tax was to keep America from getting its own aristocracy.  Republicans seem to want that aristocracy.

They desire to let certain young people gain millions or billions of dollars they did not earn, yet want to cut welfare, SNAP, Social Security, and Medicare.  The people who depend on that money just to survive are called “takers” by Republicans.  The rich brats who are gaining their wealth by doing nothing don’t seem to be classified as “takers” by the Republicans.  Why is that?

This really boils down to simple arithmetic.  You cannot cut revenues to the coffers of the federal government while expanding spending on things like defense and expect the deficit to go down!  It is impossible!  There are simply not enough “cuts” to other programs to offset this negative arithmetic.

Republicans claim they are the party of business.  If that is true, it is a wonder that any business survives in this country.  If businesses followed Republican policies, they would all go bankrupt!  Another fact.  There has been more economic growth in America under Bill Clinton and Barak Obama than any Republican President.  The worst recessions of the last half century and beginning of this century were all under Republican Presidents.

Democrats have a better record growing our economy probably because they understand that you cannot balance a budget if you cut revenues.  Republicans on the other hand don’t get simple arithmetic.  That is why they have been so bad for our economy for over 50 years!

The current crop of Republican candidates want you to follow the same disastrous policies of their predecessors.  It is simple.  Cut revenues.  Increase select spending.  Balloon the deficit.  They call that smart economics.  I call it stupid!


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Ever since the tragic shooting at a community college in Oregon last week, there have been lots of rousing commentary from both the left and the right about gun control.  The other day, John Boehner claimed that the Democrats were the ones standing in the way of gun control laws.  As usual, I find his logic somewhat staggering.

Dr. Ben Carson said that the class should have bummed rushed the shooter.  He says he would have told the class to attack the shooter.  “He may get me, but he can’t get everyone” was what he said.  Very brave words indeed.  Yet, somehow I believe that if Dr. Carson had been in the classroom, that would have been the last thing he would have thought.

Facing down a criminal, especially one with a gun is not something that most people have experience doing.  I have often commented that when I hear people tell me how they would shoot someone without thought, it is because they have never shot anyone before.  Shooting someone, or taking a life, are not easy things for most humans to do.

There seems to be a basic instinct that causes us to hesitate when confronted with such situations.  Even military professionals who are trained in using weapons with the intent to kill the target, sometimes find it difficult to actually pull the trigger at first.

In case you are wondering, that is a big part of PTSD.  Knowing you pulled the trigger and took a life can be very traumatizing, even if the decision was him or me.  Trained professionals will always choose “him,” but that doesn’t stop the thoughts that linger after the fact.

There is even a difference between combat shooting and close range shooting.  In most cases, combat shooting is from a distance.  The shooter may not even know if they actually killed anyone or not.  But, close range shooting is different.  You can actually see and smell the targeted person.  You actually see that person drop and die in front of you.

If it is difficult for trained professionals to actually shoot and kill someone, then live with the consequences, what makes you think that you can actually pull the trigger when necessary?  On top of that, what makes you think you will make the correct decision about pulling the trigger?  When should you shoot someone, and when should you not shoot someone.

This decision making came into play yesterday at a Home Depot in Michigan.  A 47 year old woman, with a concealed weapon permit, witnessed two men running from a Home Depot with security officers chasing them.  She assumed the two men were shoplifters.

This woman decided to take out her concealed 9mm handgun and opened fire in the direction of the two suspects.  She fired off several shots in the parking lot, which had several other people in it.  The police believe “one” of the bullets struck the SUV they were running to and flattened one of the tires.  The men still got away.

In this case, an armed woman made a decision that shooting two men she believed might be shoplifters was the right thing to do.  She did not take into consideration the other people in the parking lot.  She did not take into consideration the possibility that another vehicle may drive between her and the suspects.  Which leads us to the question of what was she thinking?

We are always told about how “good guys with guns will stop bad guys with guns.”  In this case, there was no mention that the two fleeing men had guns.  Nor, was there even evidence that the two men the woman witnessed were shoplifters at all.  She simply saw two men run away from security guards and started shooting.

Even assuming that these two men were shoplifters, did their crime warrant someone shooting them?  When should private citizens be allowed to take part in apprehending a criminal and when should they be allowed to shoot suspects?  Even police officers have very strict standards when they are supposed to use deadly force.  Shouldn’t this woman be held to the same standards?

What would she feel if one of her bullets had struck a child and killed him/her?  What if one of her bullets killed a mother or father?  What kind of response would the gun advocates give if she had killed an innocent person?  Would her apology be enough?  Would she be charged with manslaughter?

This is the perfect example that “good guys with guns” is not the answer.  It shows that people make very bad decisions.  Going to a target range and firing at targets is not the same thing as shooting at live people.  Simply having a “concealed weapon permit” does not equip you with the proper decision making as to when to shoot and when not to shoot.

Part of my training in the Coast Guard was with weapons.  I even had to pass a “shoot-don’t shoot” class and test.  If you accidently shot one person wrongly, you failed the test and had to retake the class and the test.  If law enforcement personnel and military personnel need such training, shouldn’t civilians who wish to carry a gun be mandated to get the same training?

How many more incidents like this one do we need to show that the theory of “good guys with guns” is not the answer to our gun problem?  Sometimes, as in cases like this one, they only add to the problem.  They place innocent people in jeopardy when it isn’t necessary.

These two suspects did not show any signs of carrying a weapon.  Yet this woman took it upon herself to prove how brave she was by opening fire in a public parking lot.  Disregarding everyone else’s safety.   Police are still considering if they should charge her with shooting up a Home Depot parking lot.  I say they should.

Reasonable gun control policies need to be enacted into law.  We need to have universal background checks so people cannot purchase a gun anywhere without having a background check conducted.  We need to institute proper education programs for people who wish to own a gun, even if they keep it in the home.  We need to institute more stringent education programs for people who wish to have a concealed weapon permit.

Without these small initiatives, we are simply arming people who have no understanding what a gun can do.  We are arming people who do not make good decisions about when to use their weapon.  In other words, we have more Home Depot Parking Lot shootings for no reason.  This time no one was injured.  Next time may be different.

This is a perfect example of gun nuts belief in vigilantism.  Sorry, but there is no room for vigilantism in society.  The only result will be innocent people being gunned down by “a good guy with a gun!”

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Ever since the terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya when four Americans were killed, the Republicans have held witch hunts to “find the conspiracy” that tried to cover it up.  There have been no less than six different committees holding hearings on the tragic incident.  None of those committees have shown anything that would cast doubt on anything.

Then, John Boehner set up a “Select Committee” to hold hearings to “get to the truth.”  He placed Trey Gowdy in charge of this Select Committee.  Gowdy has tried very hard to present himself as a hard-core prosecutor simply looking for the facts.

This Select Committee has been holding hearings for over a year.  At first, Gowdy said that all testimony would be considered “classified” and that the findings would reveal all.  Then, almost immediately, there were leaks.  These leaks were of the very selective kind.  They usually were taken out of context to prove that Secretary Clinton was behind the conspiracy.

The minority Democratic members of the committee complained about these leaks.  They complained that they were being selectively edited in order to place a bad light on Clinton.  They were mostly ignored by the media.  As a result, these leaks were held up as the “truth” by Republicans when in fact, they were anything but the “truth.”

We saw this act before.  Other committees selectively leaked information to the press.  That information, like the ones from the Select Committee were proven to be false and misleading.  But, the leaks keep coming.  At one point in this Select Committee process, someone on Gowdy’s staff leaked misleading information to the press.  Gowdy actually had the balls to blame Hillary Clinton for the leaks.

For the Republicans, everything was going along swimmingly.  Until last week, that is.  That was when the Majority Leader of the House, Kevin McCarthy, admitted on Sean Hannity’s show that the Select Committee was nothing more than a political witch hunt to “bring down Hillary Clinton.”

Now, many people already knew that was the intent of the Select Committee from the very beginning.  But, this was the first time a Republican Leader actually admitted that fact on national television.  Before this admission, former Clinton aide Cheryl Mills testified before the committee on Sept. 3.  Almost immediately Republicans began leaking snippets of Mills’ testimony and used her words to suggest that the independence of the State Department’s Accountability Review Board investigation into Benghazi had been compromised.  That was untrue as the full testimony of Ms. Mills indicates.

As a result of McCarthy flapping his gums in admission of the sole political nature of the Select Committee, Democrats on the committee have decided to release Mills’ full testimony “to begin the process of correcting the public record.”  In their statement, they said:

Our authority to take this action should be clear since you took similar unilateral action on June 22, 2015, when you publicly released a subset of Secretary Clinton’s emails—without any debate or vote by Committee Members.  Therefore, just as you unilaterally released these Committee documents, we plan to release Ms. Mills’ interview transcript.

We do not take this action lightly.  We have held off on taking such action for more than a year, but we will no longer sit and watch selective, out-of-context leaks continue to mischaracterize the testimony the Select Committee has received.

Of course a Gowdy spokesman argued that “Democrats have shown their nakedly political motivation, willingness to violate the letter and spirit of House Rules, and their desire to defend Secretary Clinton without regard to the integrity of the investigation.”

Now that was a mouthful.  First, it was McCarthy who said the Select Committee was “politically motivated.”  It has been Republicans who have “leaked information” to the press.  So, I must ask the question:  “What integrity of the investigation” is he referring to?  It is obvious that the Republican side of this “investigation” has had no integrity from the very beginning.

We were told from the beginning that this Select Committee was only interested in the facts.  We were told that Gowdy would ensure the “integrity” of the investigation and that all testimony would be handled as “classified.”  Well, I worked in the “classified” world.  This committee has violated every law pertaining to classified material.

As a result, we have been shown the true light about the Select Committee on Benghazi.  This long running Select Committee is a farce!  It is nothing more than a political game intended to bring down the person Republicans most fear in the 2016 election for President.

What makes this even more farcical, is that they have finally admitted it in public.  We have heard Republicans scream about “abuse of power” when the President issues an Executive Order they don’t like.  But, they have now shown us exactly what the therm “abuse of power” really means.  And they are the guilty party!

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The Republican Party is courting the Conservative Christian Cult like they were the answer to every problem that faces the world.  They court the “gun rights” groups like they will protect America from all the dangers of the world.  They argue against organizations like Planned Parenthood, who has saved millions of women’s lives, because they offer services that are hated by the Cult.

They are pumped up by Fox News which has been on an extremely divisive rant for years.  They are willing to side with wackos like Alex Jones when he says a military exercise is “just an excuse for the government to hunt down and detain conservatives.”  They argue for “religious liberties” and then say religions like Islam should be outlawed.

The 14 or so candidates left in the primaries for the Republican Nomination are all in step with these courtships.  They are all looking to move further right in order to get their votes and win the nomination.  They call it their “Southern Strategy.”

I have written several times that the Republican Party hasn’t come up with a new idea for the country in over 30 years.  That is proven every time a candidate talks about tax cuts.  When they talk about balancing the budget.  As a matter of fact, every time tax cuts and balancing the budget are brought up, the candidates show just how a-moral they really are.

This may take some time, but we really need to look at their strategies and their plans for destroying America.  Yes, I said their plans to destroy America.  Because that is exactly what they want to do.  They want to tear down our democracy and put up a theocracy, another name for dictatorship, in its place.

This country was founded on the basic principle that was stated in the Declaration of Independence that “all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights.  That among them are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

Those were very unusual words for their time.  Since the founding of our nation, those words were challenging to a struggling republic which turned into a democracy.  We suffered through the hatred of slavery.  We suffered through the pains of a Civil War in order to end slavery.  We suffered through the pains of segregation through the Jim Crow laws.  We found partial relief with the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act.

Since then, we have seen these acts diminish.  We have seen civil rights being denied to groups of people.  We have seen a rise in voter suppression laws to keep minorities, young people, and the elderly from voting.  We have seen hatred rise quickly and be justified by the far right-wing of conservatives.

We have heard the Republican Party become the one group that likes to tell you whom to be afraid of.  They like to say that all immigrants, Muslims, minorities, women, and gays are the real problem in our society.  They point out that immigration needs to be fixed, yet refuse to vote on any bill that comes up.  They even want to void the Fourteenth Amendment granting birthright citizenship.

They claim that “all Muslims aren’t terrorists, but all terrorists are Muslims.”  Which, of course, is nothing more than planting the seeds of hate towards Muslims.  One candidate even said a Muslim should not be allowed to be President.  Adding a “religious test” to the office that is banned by the Constitution he claims to love.

They have all proposed new tax cuts that naturally save the top 1% wage earners hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxes and placing more burden on everyone else.  They call this a “fair tax plan.”  They say that they want to “balance the budget” yet their tax plans all reduce revenue into the federal coffers.  Estimates from financial experts of all kinds say these tax plans will increase the federal deficit by some $10 Trillion over the next 10 years.

As a result, they know the only way to reduce spending is to eliminate the social safety net necessary for the poor, poor working class and the elderly.  But, even if they can eliminate these social safety nets, the deficit won’t be reduced because those savings will be earmarked for defense spending.

They want you to “support our troops,” especially when they send us to war.  Yet, they are continuously reducing the budget for the VA which is supposed to provide medical and mental health help when we return from those wars wounded.  They refuse to establish more VA Clinics to help relieve the overflow caused by the last two wars.  They simply want to throw our veterans to the trash heap once we served our purpose as cannon fodder for their ideological wars.

When a mass shooting occurs, they are very quick to point out that “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.”  They always find an excuse like the shooter was “mentally ill” or some other nonsense.  Then they point out the murder rates in places like Chicago, Detroit, New York, and other cities.  They always bring up the Second Amendment as justification for their unwillingness to do something.

It is true that we, the people, have a right to bear arms.  But that doesn’t mean we, the people, have the right to own a cache of weapons that mirror the Army’s.  It doesn’t mean that every person, with a history of criminal background, mental health, domestic violence, or a host of other problems should be allowed these same weapons.

It is ironic that we need to take a test to get a driver’s license yet gun nuts say we don’t need a safety test or background check in order to own a gun.  They claim that driving is a privilege but owning a gun is a “right.”  On the other hand, remember that you didn’t need a driver’s license” to ride a horse or drive a wagon.  Isn’t driving a car a natural outgrowth of those activities?  Or, since transportation is a necessity, shouldn’t that make it a “right” too?

They always talk about “religious liberties.”  Yet, they do not mean all religions have the right to “religious liberties.”  Only “their” religions have that right.  That is what is behind the comments about Islam and that Muslims should not be allowed to be President.

But, even more devilish, “religious liberty” as defined by these people really means that you can discriminate against whomever you wish.  There is no law in this country that you have to obey if can claim that it goes against your “religious beliefs.”  It is this same “religious liberty” argument that gave us slavery and Jim Crow laws.

The Party is always talking about deregulation.  They don’t want any laws that will limit a company’s ability to fleece the public.  These regulations were put in place after the “Great Depression” as a safeguard to protect our economy.  They worked well for decades.  Once the Republicans began chipping away at these regulations, the economy finally collapsed in 2008 once again.  Proving these regulations were necessary, and are still necessary.

The Republicans are against a minimum wage.  They are not just against raising the minimum wage, they are totally against even having one in place.  They believe that corporations should be “trusted” to place wages at a livable rate.  Yet, we see hundreds of corporations paying below poverty wages to millions of American workers.  And even when corporations like Wal-Mart raises their pay, they immediately follow with cuts in hours or positions.

We are constantly pounded with the “taker” myth of our people.  They tell us that 47% of Americans are simply “takers” who want free stuff from the government.  They are simply waiting to get their “welfare” check.  At the same time, they want to cut corporate taxes.  Yet, there are lots of companies like Wal-Mart, McDonalds, Burger King, Big Lots, and  host of others that are receiving “corporate welfare” from the government.

This is proven by the fact that these companies pay their employees so low that the employees must use parts of the social safety net just to survive.  These companies each total an average of $1.3 Billion per year in costs to the government for these programs.  They are simply allowed by Republicans to fleece the American Tax Payer in order to keep their profits high and the billions flowing into upper management’s pockets.

What does this all mean?  You have to decide for yourselves, but to me it means that the Republican Party is morally bankrupt!  It means that the American People mean nothing to them, except more profits for them and their financial backers.  It means that the Constitution means nothing to them.  That they would love for that troublesome document to find its way to the paper shredder.

It means we have a major political party that wants to destroy our country.  We have a major political party that wants to win elections based on fear, hate, suspicion, and nativism.  They talk about us being in a “Christian” country, yet denounce every principle of the “religion” they claim to follow in all of their proposed policies.

When reason loses to fanatics, we have a real problem.  When cooperation and compromise become four letter words, we have a real problem.  Sorry America, but we have a real problem.  This problem is not the fault of the Democrats, President Obama, or liberals, or the majority of the American People.  To use their own words, it is the fault of demonic players who have taken over the Republican Party.

Our country faces some real problems.  We still have too many people going to bed every night hungry.  We have problems in our education system.  We have problems with gun crimes.  We have problems with crime.  We have problems with civil rights.  We have employment problems.  We have wage inequality problems.  We have lots of problems.  Blaming someone else for these problems is not the answer.  Dividing our people is not the answer.  Hate is not the answer.

The only answer is for us to come together and work as a country to fix our problems.  That means we need to compromise with each other.  We need to listen to each other.  We need to understand that we are all in this together.  If not, the crazies will continue to win and we will continue to suffer.

That means true Republicans need to retake their party from the demonic players that have taken over.  They need to show they love this country as much as we do.  The country these Republicans want, is not the country I served and love.

Dr. Ben Carson said the other day that Hitler was possible in this country.  He and his fellow Republicans should know.  They are espousing the same hate garbage Hitler did to get to power.

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The Republican Party has been shilling the lie about Family Values and their desire to protect them for years.  Most sane people have seen through this lie for a long time.  All you have to do is look at the number of mass shootings in our country to see they don’t mean a word of it.

Our children are part of what we are supposed to protect in their “Family Values” rhetoric.  Since the Republicans are the main culprits who oppose reasonable gun control, it proves beyond reasonable doubt that Family Values means nothing to them at all.  They are simply lying to get the crazies votes.

It is time to call them out for not protecting “family values” like they say they are.  It is time to put a stop to all of this nonsense before we lose an entire generation of children. If it sounds like I am angry, you are right. I am angry.  This does not have to happen in our country.

Nor, does reasonable gun control mean we have taken guns away from citizens.  It simply means we can at least make an attempt to keep them out of the hands of people who should not be allowed to carry weapons.  It means we can finally show our children that their parents are actually adults interested in protecting them from the evil in the world.

And stop giving me those lame excuses about how “stuff happens” and the Second Amendment and your right to protect yourself and the murder rate in cities like Chicago.  That is all cover for not addressing the issues that need to be addressed that you don’t want addressed.  It is BULLSHIT!  None of those arguments have anything to do with these shootings.  And, don”t tell me that States have the answer, because States are at the heart of what is happening due to their lax gun laws!  In other words, the States are not the solution to the problem, the States ARE the problem.

For example, where do most of the guns that are used in murder in cities come from? Answer:  States that do not require proper background checks when purchased online or at gun shows!  Then transported to the cites. That is where they come from.

Also, have you notice that the vast majority of these mass killers all got their guns “legally?”  That alone should tell you something is wrong with how we allow guns to be purchased in this country.  Every time something like this happens, the gun nuts claim that the person who committed this act suffered from mental illness and it wasn’t the “gun’s” fault.  They then tell you that there is no need for universal background checks to try to keep these guns from falling into the hands of those with mental illness.

For once I agree with the gun nuts.  It isn’t the fault of the gun.  It is the fault of the gun nuts, the NRA, the gun manufacturers, and politicians who won’t stand up to these wackos.  The blood of every dead child, every murdered person, and every suicide that was the result of gun shot lies at their doorsteps!  They are the ones allowing these disturbed people to purchase guns to carry out their heinous crimes.  They are guilty of abetting the murder of our children and citizens!

We are going to hear the same old bullshit from the right-wing about gun “rights.”  But you will not hear about your right live freely without the worry of being shot by some nut allowed to purchase a gun legally.  Stop listening to them, and fight back.  Remember, the blood of our children are on their hands!

This time instead of “offering your prayers” to the victims, show a little backbone and stand up to the gun manufacturers, the NRA and the gun nuts and let us finally do something to stop the madness!  As you can see from the proliferation of these tragic events, your child could be next, or even the next mass shooter!  How will you be able to live with that if you are willing to do nothing?

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I haven’t said much over the so-called Select Committee on Benghazi simply because there hasn’t been much to say.  This hearing has been dragging on for about a year now, and nothing new has come out of it.  Until last night.  But first, let us do a little background.

The House Select Committee on Benghazi was set up by John Boehner to “get to the truth” of what happened that night when four Americans, including our Ambassador were killed.  Even though there have been at least a half-dozen of “investigations” that said there was no conspiracy and that no one has lied to Congress.  That wasn’t enough, because, well, Republicans wouldn’t have anything to talk about.

Trey Gowdy was named the head of the Committee and bragged that he’d be running a professional investigation that has no interest in partisan politics and is committed to learning the truth about the events that led to the deaths of four Americans.  But as we have seen, it leaks at every given opportunity, feeding often misleading information about Clinton’s emails to reporters.

Furthermore, he frequently asserts that he is concerned only with information that is relevant to the committee’s mandate.  All the while expanding the investigation to areas that, by his own admission are outside the committee’s purview and have little or nothing to do with the Benghazi attacks.  But, what the hell, an investigation is an investigation and who cares about the facts or little things like purview.

As you can see, the Republicans claim that this investigation has nothing to do about Hillary Clinton, or anything to do with politics.  It is simply an investigation into the “truth.”  Until last night, that is.

As part of his quest to become the next Speaker of the House, Kevin McCarthy showed up on Sean Hannity’s show on Fox News.  He was trying to show just what type of House he would be leading should he become the next Speaker.  That is when it got real interesting.  As one example of a Republican win in Congress he said:

“Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right?  But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today?”

So much for “getting to the truth.”  As you can see, the “truth” is that the select committee was solely designed to bring down the political career of Hillary Clinton!  I am not the one saying that either, even though I did say it earlier, this is coming from the person who wants to become Speaker of the House.

McCarthy went on to say that this is how “his” House would operate.  It would appear that the House of Representatives has lost sight of the fact that it is supposed to be “governing body” and not a propaganda machine of any political party.

The next time someone talks about Benghazi, maybe you should remind him that the current number 2 Republican in the House of Representatives, and the front-runner to be the next Speaker, announced on national TV that the whole Benghazi “investigation” is simply a political ploy.

I wonder how Trey Gowdy feels being thrown under the bus by someone who is trying to become his boss.  The real funny thing to me is that Hannity didn’t even notice the admission.  He even gave McCarthy applause for “his effort.”  There are no doubts anymore.  The longest running Select Committee is a farce.  Nothing more.

I sure hope Hillary is nice enough to send McCarty a “think you card” for his honesty.  Now she has the ammunition she to fight back.

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Donald Trump announced his “new” tax plan yesterday.  And, boy was it something!  I don’t know exactly what that something is, but it sure is something.  I will get back to The Donald’s plan in a bit.  But first….

Does anyone remember 2012?  In 2012 Mitt Romney faced off against President Barak Obama in an election for President.  During that election cycle, someone came up with an astounding announcement.  It was said that 47% of the American people did not pay any income taxes!  Wow!  The conservatives latched on to that figure like a pit bull latching onto a bone.

They argued that this simply proved that 47% of Americans are “takers.”  Mitt Romney fell in line and got caught with his infamous 47% remarks at a fundraiser.  That comment all but doomed his candidacy.  But, he wasn’t alone in his comments either.

Rush Limbaugh said, “The bottom 40 percent of American earners — the bottom 40 percent — on average, make a profit from the federal income tax. What I mean by that is, they get more money in tax credits than they would owe otherwise in taxes. For those people, the government sends them a payment: The earned income tax credit, the I-don’t-have-a-school-lunch tax credit, the defeat-the-Republicans tax credit, the support-unions-and-Democrats tax credit.”

Sean Hannity in all of his wisdom announced: “If half of Americans now don’t pay taxes, and the other half are the beneficiaries of the tax that the other half pay, at some point you say, OK, you got a full voting block and it seems like the Democratic Party … caters to that.”

Finally, Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade said: “97.11 percent of the taxes comes from 50 percent of the wage earners. There’s a lot of people not paying taxes. And also, about who pays taxes, only 2.7 percent of taxes come from the bottom 50 percent of wage earners. So of course they’re not — the burden’s not going to be on them. It’s going to be on the people that are paying most of it anyway.”

The rants went on, and on, and on.  According to these three wise men, about half of the American people are simply lazy, unproductive, and want “free stuff.”  Maybe that is why Romney lost so big to Obama.  Also remember, these are the same people who absolutely “hate paying taxes.”  So, rather than shouting for glee that 47% of Americans were able to “stick it to Big Government, they labeled them as “takers” from the rich.

But, we digress.  As I said, Donald Trump announced his tax plan if he is elected President.  Under that plan, surprise, surprise, that number of people who won’t pay taxes goes up!  That is right.  Under the proposal, individuals making less than $25,000 and married couples making less than $50,000 will not have to pay taxes. While 36 percent of American households do not pay income tax currently, that share would jump to 50 percent.

Isn’t it amazing how the number of people who supposedly don’t pay taxes went down from 2012 to today?  In 2012 that number was 47%.  Today, according to Donald that number is 36%.  But, after he is elected that number will go up again to 50%, even higher than they all cried about in 2012.

In his interview with 60 Minutes on Sunday night, Donald said he was going to give himself a tax increase.  Of course, he lied.  Under his plan the taxes for the top earners would drop from 36 percent to 25 percent. Trump would also entirely eliminate the estate tax — known in Republican parlance as the “death tax,” and elsewhere as a valuable check against wealth inequality.  The top rate on capital gains, meanwhile, would drop from 24 to 20 percent. And while Trump would cap some deductions favored by the wealthy, the not-at-all-liberal Wall Street Journal reported that the reductions in the marginal rates would likely make up for the deduction caps.

In addition, it has been estimated by a conservative think tank that his tax plan would result in the national debt going up more than 75%!  Trump said his plan wouldn’t increase the debt.  But Tax Foundation says the debt would increase by $12 Trillion over the next decade.

On top of all of that, Jeb Bush, not to be outdone, said today that he is “flattered” that Trump stole his tax plan.  Which I believe should tell you everything you need to know about Bush’s tax plan all by itself.  So far, I haven’t heard anything from Limbaugh, Hannity, or Kilmeade about this new “tax plan” from Trump.  You must understand that all three love Donald Trump.  So, I don’t suppose you will hear much.  Especially since they seem to be getting the better deal again.

See, according to the Tax Foundation, the income of the top 1% will increase 21.8 percent as compared to income increase of 1.4 percent of the lowest earners.  In case you are wondering just how conservative Tax Foundation is, they get millions of dollars from the Koch Brothers.  So they presented another set of calculations based on favorable assumptions of economic growth that it said would be driven by Trump’s policies. Under that scenario, the national debt would climb by just $10.2 trillion over the next 10 years.

In case you are wondering, the total federal debt is currently $13.08 trillion.  If Republicans are elected and apply Trump’s tax plan to us, they will virtually double the current national debt.  How is that for balancing the budget?

All of this sleight of hand has a purpose.  It is intended to sound like we the normal people will get a tax break.  We the normal people should be thrilled.  But, in the end, it all boils down to one thing.  More money in the pockets of the top 1 percent.

It seems to me that the real Republican Plan is to bankrupt our country so the top 1 percent can see an  increase in their income.  This is just another example of the collapse of moral fiber in the Republican Party.  They have gone from vilifying those nasty “takers” in 2012, to championing a front-runner who will create even more “takers” who won’t pay any income taxes.

Do you think that it is possible to find a party at any other moment in American history that’s this completely incoherent and contradictory?  Whether it’s Ted Cruz wanting to repeal Obamacare while signing up for a policy because it’s a better value for his family; or whether it’s the crusade against Planned Parenthood, an organization that saves millions more lives than abortions performed; or whether the GOP’s top libertarian, Rand Paul, filibustering the use of drones then saying he’d use drones to kill liquor store thieves.  There simply is no precedent in our history to show just how off-the-rails the Republican Party has fallen.

Yet, they want us to let them “govern” our great country!

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