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View Diary: Conservative pundit explains why Republicans are screwed on taxes (137 comments)

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  •  Unfortunately, repeated humilation doesn't (7+ / 0-)

    work with Republicans.  As a congenital contrarian, I am rather skeptical of the current zeitgeist that Obama has all this political capital that the Repubs can't combat.  We've been here before.

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Tue Nov 13, 2012 at 07:13:19 AM PST

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    •  Not about political capital (16+ / 0-)

      It's a matter of who wants what.

      In 2010, Obama needed to still finish up a lot of legislation and a strategic arms treaty.  He wanted some kind of stimulus too.   So he bent on the tax cuts and got almost all of the rest before the end of December.

      In 2011, the real problem was the debt ceiling, but also the national conversation was 100% about austerity and so he was trying to accomplish a couple things beyond not having the country go into default

      1.  Be seen as a "serious" player in the deficit cutting game
      2.  Make the Rs break the "no tax" pledge.

      He failed at #2, mixed success at #1, but the attempt did allow him to pivot to a jobs message once the debt ceiling crap was over.   Also, quite frankly, he was done trying to legislate at that point.  He knew congress would no longer move an of his policy goals, which freed him up to stop being nice and conciliatory.

      In 2012 lame duck, the consequences of inaction are worse for the Rs than the Ds, especially if they get the blame for the inaction resulting in defense cuts and taxes raised for everybody.

      Obama seems to be setting the stage for the right frame on this, with his messaging.   But his hand is a lot stronger when, as we're starting to see, liberal groups, unions are pressuring him to not put things on the table.  The Senate has already taken SS off the table.  He can go in the negotiations "Sorry guys, I'd like to be all 2011-bipartisan and shit, but if Pelosi and Reed won't pass it, I guess we'll just have to go off thecliff".

      Meanwhile, remember, if the house Rs splinter on a deal Pelosi can accept, she only needs 25ish votes from the R caucus to pass something worthwile.   Such a splintering is more likely in 2013 than now, but it's not impossible now.

      •  Not sure what Obama & Dems "want" (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ichibon, sea note, phonegery, Eric Blair

        But I think that what Repubs really want is to slash entitlement programs, and the tax cuts were always a red herring they were going to "cave" on to get what they really wanted. Rich people rarely pay the full top rate with all the ways around them so it's more of a symbolic "loss" to them.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Tue Nov 13, 2012 at 08:32:36 AM PST

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        •  No one pays "the full top rate" (0+ / 0-)

          because it is the top MARGINAL rate; the highest margin.

          Everyone (almost) gets their exemption and standard deduction amount tax free, even you.

          I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

          by samddobermann on Tue Nov 13, 2012 at 04:23:47 PM PST

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      •  Thank you for the interesting comment (4+ / 0-)

        It is refreshing to read you thoughtful description how a different political landscape means different goals can be sought employing different political strategies.

      •  I agree with this, but did you forget the impact (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Womantrust, greblos, Eric Blair

        of OWS on the national conversation?  It may have eventually fizzled out, but was a huge factor in shifting the focus from austerity.

        •  I forgot to mention it in this post (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bythesea

          But no OWS is huge, it is a lot of how Obama got to run on a "raise taxes on the rich" platform in 2012, and is part of the ongoing pressure that can only strengthen his hand.

          What OWS is doing in the Hurricane Sandy aftermath can only help their goodwill and longer term influence.  OWS has a kind of soft power...it doesn't hold a candle to the weapon Teahadists have with the way they primary anyone who compromises even a little.  But soft power is still power, and it may prove more effective in the long run at getting policy done.

          •  But they are not getting credit (0+ / 0-)

            in the News.

            They need something to identify them like a outer vest* with an occupy symbol on it. That would at least show up in visuals.

            The media is just showing that as neighbor helping neighbors with out showing that it is a message.

            Like dayglo orange like highway safety workers wear — with black symbol of fist.

            I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

            by samddobermann on Tue Nov 13, 2012 at 04:34:24 PM PST

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        •  However even before they started (0+ / 0-)

          Obama and Geithner were fighting world wide against austerity — with little success in Europe.

          I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

          by samddobermann on Tue Nov 13, 2012 at 04:25:53 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  "Sorry guys, I'd like to be all 2011-bipartisan (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jm214

        and shit, but toooooooooooo late, ____uckers!

      •  Wow, greblos, you get it! I have (0+ / 0-)

        been in despair that no one seems to see that Obama did well in the lame duck 2010 session and the pivot in 2011 that had Obama taking advantage of his getting a Congress focused on deficit reduction.

        He just didn't realize how full on crazy they were.

        Problem: Moody's just said fix before 2013, not just defer or we will downgrade.  2nd: When does Boehner get reelected  — or not?

        Thought for the day. If Rs split in vote for speaker, could Dems unite and vote in Pelosi?

        I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

        by samddobermann on Tue Nov 13, 2012 at 04:19:41 PM PST

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        •  I don't think Moody's matters (0+ / 0-)

          The downgrade anyway after the debt ceiling, primarily due to R obstruction, was a nonevent -  interest rates are still insanely low for US govt debt.

          If I was Obama, I'd just ignore their posturing.  Our creditors will decide on their own whether the USA is a safe bet.  I don't think the rating agencies have as big an impact there as they may think.  

          Regarding the speaker, the constitution doesn't have anything to say beyond the House chooses it.  It could even be somebody not IN the house.  In practice I think that a successful attempt to nominate a minority party member to the Speaker would result in a constitutional crisis (instant court challenges etc).

          Here's what happens to individual reps who buck their party, per wikipedia:

          "It is expected that members of the House vote for their party's candidate. If they do not do so, they usually vote for someone else in their party or vote "present". Those who vote for the other party's candidate often face serious consequences, up to and including the loss of seniority. The last major instance where a representative voted for the other party's candidate was in 2000, when Democrat Jim Traficant of Ohio voted for Republican Dennis Hastert. In response, the Democrats stripped him of his seniority and he lost all of his committee posts."

    •  Must confess I worry the same thing... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      phonegery, Womantrust

      Too many past instances of giving away the store to start the negotiations.

      Please get a spine this time guys.....you have the whip hand....USE IT!

      Grand Bargains are great, but only if the end result is really something GRAND!!!

      Free markets would be a great idea, if markets were actually free.

      by dweb8231 on Tue Nov 13, 2012 at 08:55:36 AM PST

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