Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Will U.S. Oil and Gas Manufacturers Be Included?

U.S. oil and gas companies have been increasing production in America with "high-tech" manufacturing and creating thousands of new U.S. jobs for years. 
President Obama last night at the SOTU speech:

"If you’re an American manufacturer, you should get a bigger tax cut. If you’re a high-tech manufacturer, we should double the tax deduction you get for making products here. And if you want to relocate in a community that was hit hard when a factory left town, you should get help financing a new plant, equipment, or training for new workers. 

My message is simple. It’s time to stop rewarding businesses that ship jobs overseas, and start rewarding companies that create jobs right here in America. Send me these tax reforms, and I’ll sign them right away."

By some classifications, the "petroleum and coal products" industry is considered to be part of U.S. manufacturing, e.g. see IndustryWeek's report on the 500 largest publicly held U.S. manufacturing companies, which includes Exxon Mobil, Chevron, Conoco Phillips, etc.

Questions:

1. Will Obama include U.S. oil companies in the group of American manufacturers that qualify for a "bigger tax cut?"

2. Will oil and gas companies using advanced technologies like hydraulic fracturing (and the "super-fracking" technologies that are under development) qualify as "high-tech manufacturers" and get a double tax deduction for "high-tech" domestic energy production?

3. Will some of the oil and gas companies get any credit for re-vitalizing some formerly depressed communities in North Dakota and rust-belt states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, and creating jobs in America (see chart above)?

4. Will oil and gas companies (and other American manufacturers supporting the oil and gas industries with steel pipes, drilling equipment and sand, etc.) that create jobs in America, get rewarded with help financing new plants, equipment, or training for new workers for future energy production and the manufactured products that support the industry?

Somehow I don't think Obama was thinking of oil and gas companies when he talked about "American manufacturing," and I don't think he gives any credit to thousands of American energy-related jobs that have already been created thanks to advanced "high-tech" fracking techniques that created the "shale revolution" (see chart above).

Update: Marko in the comments section asks "By saying that he wants to cut taxes in certain sectors to encourage or help them, doesn't Obama admit that higher taxes hurt business?"


47 Comments:

At 1/25/2012 10:05 AM, Blogger Paul said...

I didn't watch his nonsense last night, but I guarantee the answer is "no."

 
At 1/25/2012 10:07 AM, Blogger Jet Beagle said...

What a bunch of Obama socialist crap! The U.S. government can most help job creation in the U.S. by ... getting out of the way and letting the free market work.

Every time the government tries to "help" some industry or some disadvantaged group, it reduces the overall productivity and competitiveness of the U.S. And that's the real job killer in America.

 
At 1/25/2012 10:16 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

I am with you, Paul and JB on this one Mark. Obama is clearly in politician mode and has no interest in anything but getting reelected. The fact that the American voter will probably have to choose between a Socialist and National Socialist does not paint an optimistic picture of the future.

 
At 1/25/2012 10:19 AM, Blogger Duncan said...

Politicians love exemptions from the laws they make. So they can sprikle them down upon an adoring public like the gentle rain from heaven itself. No doubt certain unfavored businesses will be exempt from the exemptions

 
At 1/25/2012 10:20 AM, Blogger Che is dead said...

"The fact that the American voter will probably have to choose between a Socialist and National Socialist does not paint an optimistic picture of the future." -- Vag

Sorry, Vag, there will be only one Democrat on the ticket this time around.

 
At 1/25/2012 10:31 AM, Blogger Paul said...

Vange,

"The fact that the American voter will probably have to choose between a Socialist and National Socialist does not paint an optimistic picture of the future."

Newt, Romney, and Santorum would be pro-drilling, and would have enthusiastically allowed the Keystone pipeline to proceed. THere is a difference on a whole range of policy issues.

 
At 1/25/2012 10:36 AM, Blogger morganovich said...

what amazes me is tha obama gets away with calling for "an end to oil company subsidies" again and again.

there are no such things.

they pay mountains of taxes. XOM pays more taxes (in absolute $'s and as a % of revenue) than any other major us corporation.

there are NO explicit tax breaks and subsidies for them. they just use the same tax treatment on amortization, inventory, etc as everyone else. i'm allowed to use LIFO at a hedge fund, why shouldn't an oil co do it?

i really wish that at some point someone would ask him to name one of these subsidies. it would be a great slam at a debate and show him up to be the liar he is.

 
At 1/25/2012 10:45 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Sorry, Vag, there will be only one Democrat on the ticket this time around.

That takes care of the Socialist. But from what I see Newt and Santorum are both National Socialists while Mitt is not that different than Obama. Since you are not predicting a Ron Paul nomination you are agreeing with me whether you like to admit it or not.

 
At 1/25/2012 10:48 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Newt, Romney, and Santorum would be pro-drilling, and would have enthusiastically allowed the Keystone pipeline to proceed. THere is a difference on a whole range of policy issues.

Romney is a Socialist. He loves big government and created the plan on which Obamacare was based.

Newt and Santorum are big government National Socialists. They support the Patriot Act, warrantless searches, an executive not bound by the Constitution, and a partnership between business and government. Sorry but a fascist is not much better than a socialist.

 
At 1/25/2012 10:49 AM, Blogger Benjamin said...

I am beginning to wonder if the words "free enterprise" are meaningless in the American context.

Obama says manufacturers should get financing---from taxpayers? That sounds like our agriculture sector, and once the subsidies start, they never stop---so Gingrich's reply in the GOP debate, in which he said stopping farm subsidies is just too hard.

Sooner or later, the solar panel makers are going to figure out they need to locate their plants in rural America and say they are harvesting sunlight. They then will get permanent subsidies from the GOP, rather than crude, one-offs from the Dumbocrats.

Or play the national security card---that works for generations also.

 
At 1/25/2012 10:51 AM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

what amazes me is tha obama gets away with calling for "an end to oil company subsidies" again and again.

Well, there are some. The biggest one of these is ethanol. Additionally, oil companies get tax breaks on developing oil fields and can write off some R&D expenses. There are also government contracts (which are hugely in the favor of the oil companies), plus they are given first priority on us foreign projects, like Iraqi oil.

You are right that they pay mountains of taxes and regulatory fees, but they do have subsidies as well.

 
At 1/25/2012 10:58 AM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

A politician is a politician, whether he has a D, R, L or I after his name. We'd like to believe that all our politicians are like Cincinnatus, who reluctantly comes to power, solves the problem(s), and then returns to private life. But he is nothing more than a legend. A myth. Just like the myth we've created around George Washington.

But I digress.

 
At 1/25/2012 11:05 AM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Che is Dead--

Are you hired by the GOP to pettifog on behalf of that party--a confederacy of grifters and poltroons--in various blogs?

Your commentary is relentlessly partisan, unlike Vange, who adheres to certain principles.

In many respects, Vange is right--we have a choice between a watered-down socialist (Obama) and the militarized national socialists, the GOP.

Try reading up on Ron Paul---he is a bright ray of hope for the GOP, and I would vote for him, except for his naive faith in the gold standard.

 
At 1/25/2012 11:23 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Well, there are some. The biggest one of these is ethanol.

Ethanol is not a subsidy for the oil companies. It actually adds to their cost of blending gasoline and produces a lower quality product.

Additionally, oil companies get tax breaks on developing oil fields and can write off some R&D expenses.

Costs should be written off.

There are also government contracts (which are hugely in the favor of the oil companies), plus they are given first priority on us foreign projects, like Iraqi oil.

Are they? I see that many of the leases in Iraq have gone to foreign companies.

You are right that they pay mountains of taxes and regulatory fees, but they do have subsidies as well.

As I wrote above, being able to write off costs is not a subsidy.

 
At 1/25/2012 11:27 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

A politician is a politician, whether he has a D, R, L or I after his name.

Individual character matters. I choose not to dismiss the variation in character by claiming that all politicians are the same.

We'd like to believe that all our politicians are like Cincinnatus, who reluctantly comes to power, solves the problem(s), and then returns to private life.

That would be nice.

But he is nothing more than a legend. A myth. Just like the myth we've created around George Washington.

Washington was a statist who should have been placed against the wall for his coup along with the rest of the Federalists. But I do not see how this matters to the discussion here. Not all candidates running for president are stupid, corrupt, and self serving. The process is geared to select the stupid, corrupt, and self serving. But it does not have to if voters are paying attention.

 
At 1/25/2012 11:27 AM, Blogger Paul said...

Vange,

"Romney is a Socialist. He loves big government and created the plan on which Obamacare was based."

Agreed. But that doesn't mean he isn't better than Obama on other issues. Newt is endoring the Chilean model for Social Security. Where do you think Obama stands on that?

 
At 1/25/2012 11:29 AM, Blogger Paul said...

"Try reading up on Ron Paul-"

I love it when people who fell in love with Obama in 2008 give voting advice.

 
At 1/25/2012 11:42 AM, Blogger Marko said...

By saying that he wants to cut taxes in certain sectors to encourage or help them, doesn't Obama admit that higher taxes hurt business?

 
At 1/25/2012 11:45 AM, Blogger Buddy R Pacifico said...

Jon Murphy states:

"There are also government contracts (which are hugely in the favor of the oil companies), plus they are given first priority on us foreign projects, like Iraqi oil."

Jon, please give an example of government contracts favorable to the oil companies, and evidence of priority on Iraqi oil projects.

 
At 1/25/2012 12:34 PM, Blogger Che is dead said...

"Are you hired by the GOP to pettifog on behalf of that party--a confederacy of grifters and poltroons--in various blogs?" -- "Benji"

First, I am a conservative, not a Republican. Having said that, nothing I could say would be as valuable to the GOP as the quality of the arguments coming from their opposition, in the form of comments form you and Vag.

 
At 1/25/2012 12:52 PM, Blogger Che is dead said...

"There are also government contracts (which are hugely in the favor of the oil companies), plus they are given first priority on us foreign projects, like Iraqi oil." -- Jon Murphy


Why, after all the assistance we've given to Iraq over the past five years, was the first major Iraqi oil deal signed with China and not with an American or even a western company? The answer is, in part, because three Democratic senators intervened in Iraqi domestic politics earlier this year to prevent Iraq from signing short-term agreements with Exxon Mobil, Shell, Total, Chevron, and BP ... The Iraqi government was poised to sign no-bid contracts with those firms this summer to help make immediate and needed improvements in Iraq's oil infrastructure. The result would have been significant foreign investment in Iraq, an expansion of Iraqi government revenues, and an increase in the global supply of oil ... Senators Chuck Schumer, John Kerry, and Claire McCaskill wrote a letter to Secretary of State Rice asking her "to persuade the GOI [Government of Iraq] to refrain from signing contracts with multinational oil companies until a hydrocarbon law is in effect in Iraq." ... the resulting media hooraw in Iraq led to the cancellation of the contracts, and helps to explain why Iraq is doing oil deals instead with China. -- FrontPageMag

Only the Democrats and their cronies are allowed to profit from U.S. involement in Iraq:

OSLO — Peter W. Galbraith, an influential former American ambassador, is a powerful voice on Iraq who helped shape the views of policy makers like Joseph R. Biden Jr. and John Kerry. In the summer of 2005, he was also an adviser to the Kurdish regional government as Iraq wrote its Constitution — tough and sensitive talks not least because of issues like how Iraq would divide its vast oil wealth. Now Mr. Galbraith, 58, son of the renowned economist John Kenneth Galbraith, stands to earn perhaps a hundred million or more dollars as a result of his closeness to the Kurds, his relations with a Norwegian oil company and constitutional provisions he helped the Kurds extract. As the scope of Mr. Galbraith’s financial interests in Kurdistan become clear, they have the potential to inflame some of Iraqis’ deepest fears, including conspiracy theories that the true reason for the American invasion of their country was to take its oil. -- New York Times

 
At 1/25/2012 2:10 PM, Blogger juandos said...

"What a bunch of Obama socialist crap!"...

Thankfully there is Cato...

The Cato Institute Responds to President Obama’s State-of-the-Union Address

Nine minute & forty second video...

Even the AP people are getting in on the act: FACT CHECK: Obama pushes plans that flopped before

President Barack Obama laid out an array of plans in his State of the Union speech as if his hands weren't so tied by political realities. There can be little more than wishful thinking behind his call to end oil industry subsidies - something he could not get through a Democratic Congress, much less today's divided Congress, much less in this election year...

 
At 1/25/2012 2:17 PM, Blogger sethstorm said...

Will business finally admit that they aren't ascended beings, thinking they're beyond the reach of government - and be willing partners?

This isn't the Dark Ages, but business sure wants to make anyone that is not a business a serf - and reduce freedom overall. One need only see their choice to forsake the First World and welcome the despotic and unfree Third.

 
At 1/25/2012 2:19 PM, Blogger sethstorm said...


he U.S. government can most help job creation in the U.S. by ... getting out of the way and letting the free market work.

While business sells out the US and attempts to undermine it.


Every time the government tries to "help" some industry or some disadvantaged group, it reduces the overall productivity and competitiveness of the U.S.

No, despite your invocation of the sports-related canard, it enhances the US at the cost of the world. That is far better than sacrificing our own.

 
At 1/25/2012 2:25 PM, Blogger sethstorm said...


Or play the national security card---that works for generations also.

It works because of it being the most effective argument against offshore outsourcing.

It is one of the few nuts that globalization will never crack.

 
At 1/25/2012 2:27 PM, Blogger morganovich said...

jon-

other than ethanol, not a single one of those subsidies is specific to oil and gas. any industry can write off r+d and on building a capital base and amortizing assets.

taking those away from oil and gas companies would be treating them worse than other companies, not taking away somehting special.

they are already the most taxed firms in the us.

i doubt you can find a single large us corporation that pays anyhting like the tax dollars or all in tax rate of XOM.

further, ethanol is NOT a net benefit to them.

keep in mind that without ethanol blending requirements, they'd be selling more gasoline. a gallon would be a gallon, not .85-.9 or a gallon.

the prime beneficiary of the ethanol requirement is the farm industry. the oil cos lose out from it on a net basis.

 
At 1/25/2012 4:38 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Agreed. But that doesn't mean he isn't better than Obama on other issues. Newt is endoring the Chilean model for Social Security. Where do you think Obama stands on that?

First of all, Newt is an idiot who says many things but has little depth. His idea of what the 'Chilean model for Social Security' should be may not be exactly what you and I expect. Given his record of looking after himself by using his office to help special interests I would expect him to set up a system that rewards the big banks while it screws individuals.

Second, there is nothing to turn into the 'Chilean model for Social Security'. There is no money in the SS trust funds and if you look at all of the unfunded liabilities you see more than $100 trillion in a $15 trillion economy.

Third, Newt has no plan to actually cut government spending. That means that he is not very different than Obama, Santorum, or Mitt. What I can't get over is how an intelligent person like you can let his emotions get the better of him and pretend that there is a substantial difference between the mainstream parties. I think that you need to actually step back a little and take the emotion out of it as you examine what the candidates and parties actually stand for.

 
At 1/25/2012 4:49 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

By saying that he wants to cut taxes in certain sectors to encourage or help them, doesn't Obama admit that higher taxes hurt business?

It is hard to figure out what he was really saying. I am guessing that it has something with taxing imports to prevent foreign firms, which are not taxed domestically for profit they make abroad, from having an advantage over American companies which are taxed on their worldwide income and have to pay tax where they earn their profits and still pay the 40% corporate tax rate at home.

 
At 1/25/2012 4:50 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

First, I am a conservative, not a Republican. Having said that, nothing I could say would be as valuable to the GOP as the quality of the arguments coming from their opposition, in the form of comments form you and Vag.

Conservatives don't support big government candidates who call for increased spending. I think that you are something else.

 
At 1/25/2012 4:56 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Only the Democrats and their cronies are allowed to profit from U.S. involement in Iraq:

OSLO — Peter W. Galbraith, an influential former American ambassador, is a powerful voice on Iraq who helped shape the views of policy makers like Joseph R. Biden Jr. and John Kerry. In the summer of 2005, he was also an adviser to the Kurdish regional government as Iraq wrote its Constitution — tough and sensitive talks not least because of issues like how Iraq would divide its vast oil wealth. Now Mr. Galbraith, 58, son of the renowned economist John Kenneth Galbraith, stands to earn perhaps a hundred million or more dollars as a result of his closeness to the Kurds, his relations with a Norwegian oil company and constitutional provisions he helped the Kurds extract. As the scope of Mr. Galbraith’s financial interests in Kurdistan become clear, they have the potential to inflame some of Iraqis’ deepest fears, including conspiracy theories that the true reason for the American invasion of their country was to take its oil. -- New York Times


Why the surprise? Galbraith knows the score in Washington and was supporting the neoconservatives when they were pushing for an Iraq invasion. He was an adviser to Paul Wolfowitz and was pushing that conman Chalabi as a viable voice for Iraq. As I wrote, there is no difference between the two sides. Both are corrupt and love power as they seek to spend more and make government bigger.

 
At 1/25/2012 4:58 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"Second, there is nothing to turn into the 'Chilean model for Social Security'. There is no money in the SS trust funds and if you look at all of the unfunded liabilities you see more than $100 trillion in a $15 trillion economy."

Newt advocates letting younger taxpayers voluntarily put some of their $ into private accounts. Could be phased in over time, albeit with some hefty transition costs.

"What I can't get over is how an intelligent person like you can let his emotions get the better of him and pretend that there is a substantial difference between the mainstream parties."

Except (generally speaking) on taxes, oil, abortion, defense, gun rights,Israel,Supreme Court appointees,tort reform,govt unions,etc. The GOP in general hasn't been very good on spending, but even Bush was better in this area than Obama. Conservative groups like the ACU, CAGW,NTU, and even Liberal groups like ADA flesh out voting records and show a marked contrast between the 2 parties and individuals in particular. You can read the voting guides and see an enormous ideological difference between, say, Jeff Flake and Barney Frank. On a state level, who could possibly not see the grand canyon of differences between Chris Christie and Jon Corzine? Are you aware of the reforms of Governors Jon Kasich and Scott Walker? It's really absurd for you to insist there's no difference.

 
At 1/25/2012 5:05 PM, Blogger juandos said...

"Will business finally admit that they aren't ascended beings, thinking they're beyond the reach of government - and be willing partners?"...

Will sethstorm finally admit he's spewing baloney?

Are his delusional episodes getting worse?

'beyond the reach of government'...

Ask Boeing about that?

 
At 1/25/2012 5:35 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Newt advocates letting younger taxpayers voluntarily put some of their $ into private accounts. Could be phased in over time, albeit with some hefty transition costs.

Conveniently, that is the same thing that Ron Paul has been calling for over the past decade or so. But Dr. Paul does not call for the creation of some government program that would check up on younger workers. He leaves it up to them to look after their own retirement needs by putting the money in plans of their own choosing that would grow tax free. There would be no need for hefty transaction costs.

Except (generally speaking) on taxes, oil, abortion, defense, gun rights,Israel,Supreme Court appointees,tort reform,govt unions,etc.

There has been little effective difference on any of these issues.

For example, on gun rights the National Associaation on Gun Rights is not impressed with Newt and mentions his "flexible" principles. He has worked with Democrats to support a number of gun control measures.

On the issue of abortion Newt calls for a judicial solution that could not be implemented. Compare this to Ron Paul who takes the decision on abortion out of the federal courts and leaves it up to the states where it belongs.

On the issue of the military there seems no difference between Obama and Newt/Santorum/Mitt. They would all continue stationing American troops all over the world, pay for the defense of Japan, South Korea, and Europe, and meddle in the Middle East. Only Ron Paul would bring back the troops and limit military spending to defense instead of nation building abroad, military aid, or the expansion of empire.

There is no difference between the Republicans and Democrats on Israel. All the candidates, except for Dr. Paul, would continue to provide aid both to Israel and its Arab enemies. And all except for Dr. Paul, would continue to demand that Israel ask for permission before it chose to act in its own interest.

And I don't know about the Supreme Court either. Newt was a supporter of the Harriet Miers nomination that so many conservatives opposed. It shows that he has no principles and is willing to be 'flexible' as long as he increases his own influence. That is not very different than the unprincipled Democrats that you criticize.


continued...

 
At 1/25/2012 5:42 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

The GOP in general hasn't been very good on spending, but even Bush was better in this area than Obama.

Bush was one of the worst spenders ever. Not only did he introduce the Medicare Part D program but he expanded funding for most government agencies and began a totally unnecessary war in Iraq.

Conservative groups like the ACU, CAGW,NTU, and even Liberal groups like ADA flesh out voting records and show a marked contrast between the 2 parties and individuals in particular.

Yes they do. But thy are biased in the way that they score members. And if you look at the specific record of people like Newt or Romney you will find individuals who have no principles. These people are just politicians who are out for power, just like Obama.

You can read the voting guides and see an enormous ideological difference between, say, Jeff Flake and Barney Frank. On a state level, who could possibly not see the grand canyon of differences between Chris Christie and Jon Corzine? Are you aware of the reforms of Governors Jon Kasich and Scott Walker? It's really absurd for you to insist there's no difference.

Look at Newt and Nancy pushing for carbon taxes and tell me that there is a big difference. Look at Obama and Santorum on Afghanistan or Iran and tell me that there is a difference. Look at the proposed budgets that will increase the debt and unfunded liabilities and tell me that there is a difference. Yes, there are the odd differences on some issues here or there. But when you look at substance there is nothing that would support that yours is anything more than a Coke/Pepsi type of comparison.

 
At 1/25/2012 7:50 PM, Blogger Tom said...

The US government could do us all a great favor by chopping itself in half.

 
At 1/25/2012 9:58 PM, Blogger Paul said...

Vange,



"Conveniently, that is the same thing that Ron Paul has been calling for over the past decade or so."

I have contempt for ROn Paul, but that aside he has zero chance of winning the nomination. Wouldn't Gingrich's reform be better than the current situation?

"For example, on gun rights the National Associaation on Gun Rights is not impressed with Newt and mentions his "flexible" principles."

You keep focusng on Newt rather than the obviously true generality that the GOP is better than Democrats on gun issues. Consult the NRA voting guide if you seriously dispute that. And since you keep focusing on him, Newt's lifetime record from the NRA is an A. Obama's is F. You don't see a big difference there?

"On the issue of abortion Newt calls for a judicial solution that could not be implemented."

K, I dunno about that, but Obama sponsored infanticide as a member of the Chicago Senate. See the "Infants Born Alive Protection Act"
and tell me again how there's no difference between Obama and Newt on this issue.

Your argument appears to be "Newt is not pure, therefore all Republicans are the same as Democrats." Do you not understand how nonsensical that is?

"Bush was one of the worst spenders ever."

I don't really disagree. I said he was better than Obama. That's indisputable.

"Yes they do. But thy are biased in the way that they score members."

Uh yeah, they are biased if they are a conservative or liberal group, that's the whole idea. But the voting records are based down the line on how individual COngressmen voted on key issues. Obama wasn't given the equivalent of an "F" on every conservative voting guide because he's a member of the Democrat party, but because he voted like the socialist he is.

"And if you look at the specific record of people like Newt or Romney you will find individuals who have no principles."

There are other Republicans besides Newt or Romney. But Newt's lifetime rating from the ACU is 90%. He held the line against Bill Clinton's big spending liberal instincts during the '90's.

"Look at Newt and Nancy pushing for carbon taxes and tell me that there is a big difference."

I give you specific examples of Governors making serious policy changes for the good, and you reply with a completely irrelevant comment about somethign stupid Newt did. Do you think that's convincing? Go look at Kasich and Walker's reforms vs' the Democrats and the unions and tell me again how there isn't a difference.

 
At 1/26/2012 8:39 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

I have contempt for ROn Paul, but that aside he has zero chance of winning the nomination. Wouldn't Gingrich's reform be better than the current situation?

Dr Paul is the only true conservative running for the office. He is the only one who has a proposed budget that would have cuts and would cut the size of government. Gingrich is not to be trusted because you don't know what you will get from him. He has no principles and is too eager to 'compromise' with Democrats when it suits him. He has voted with them on guns, has supported them on carbon taxes, health care, prescription drugs, etc. He is all ego and no character. As such, he can't be trusted and would be considered an even worse choice than Obama.

You keep focusng on Newt rather than the obviously true generality that the GOP is better than Democrats on gun issues. Consult the NRA voting guide if you seriously dispute that. And since you keep focusing on him, Newt's lifetime record from the NRA is an A. Obama's is F. You don't see a big difference there?

There is no evidence that the GOP is any better. Bush and the GOP controlled both houses for six years. They increased funding for non-defense by around 60%, introduced a very expensive new entitlement program and introduced thousands of new regulations that stifled American business. Conservatives may yap and whine about the EPA but they forget that it was created by Nixon and that its first administrator overruled the departments own scientific based conclusions to ban DDT for political purposes. The precedent was set under a Republican Administration.

And speaking of Nixon, he was the one who ensured the endless growth of government by allowing the Fed to kick the can down the road after the closing of the gold window. By severing the link between gold and the currency he ensured that the global financial system, which was based on the Bretton Woods System that he killed, would fail. We are seeing that now as gold has gone from $35 to $1,700 a troy ounce, and retirees on fixed income face a massive loss in purchasing power.

Both parties are corrupt, power hungry, and incompetent. When it comes to the loss of personal liberty, financial security, foreign policy, the growth of government, etc., there is little difference between them. In what way was Clinton worse than Bush I or Bush II?

 
At 1/26/2012 9:26 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

K, I dunno about that, but Obama sponsored infanticide as a member of the Chicago Senate. See the "Infants Born Alive Protection Act"
and tell me again how there's no difference between Obama and Newt on this issue.


There is no difference. Newt would try to appoint judges who would overthrow Roe v. Wade. Well, that did not work for Reagan, Bush I, or Bush II. Words do not matter, particularly when they come from a buffoon like Newt. What matters is action.

And on that front I still like the suggestion advanced by Dr. Paul. By passing a law that would remove the power of the federal government to overrule the states Roe v. Wade would no longer be applicable and the states could regulate abortion as they wished.

Your argument appears to be "Newt is not pure, therefore all Republicans are the same as Democrats." Do you not understand how nonsensical that is?

My argument is that if you look at the actual evidence you see no material difference between the two parties. Do you understand that for you to argue against my point you will need to show evidence that under a Republican administration with a Republican controlled Congress there was evidence of a reduction in government the repeal of useless legislation and an improvement on the fiscal front? I am more than willing to be convinced if you trot out the evidence. But I just don't see it.

Note that Dr. Paul, who is a fiscal conservative, often votes alone or with a handful of representatives on many bills. When Congress voted against the censure of Israel when the Republicans under Reagan voted for it. He has never voted for a budget that would increase the deficit even as Newt, Santorum, and the Republicans were voting for spending that exceeded the projected revenues. You might want to point to the Reagan deregulation of the energy, airline, and trucking industries but that was done by Carter. Again, if you want to convince me show me the evidence of ACTIONS taken by the Republicans that were substantially different than those of Democrats. Show me the trends in spending. Show me the trends in debt accumulation. Show me the inflation rate.

I suspect that you don't really want to look at the actual data because it will tell you exactly what I have been saying; that there is no material difference between the two parties. While one may be better on social freedom and the other better on economic freedom they are both pro-government and anti-liberty.

 
At 1/26/2012 9:39 AM, Blogger VangelV said...


I don't really disagree. I said he was better than Obama. That's indisputable.


Of course it is disputable. Obama is a socialist. You expect him to expand government and to decrease individual liberty. But Bush was supposed to be a Conservative. He ran on a platform of smaller government and a modest foreign policy that would avoid Clinton's nation building. But after he won he increased government at a faster rate than Clinton. Non-defense spending went up by 60%. The number of regulations exploded. A new entitlement program was pushed through. He began an unnecessary war against Iraq that has cost around 5,000 American lives, produced tens of thousands of American wounded, and killed several hundred thousand Iraqis. He introduced the Patriot Act and by doing so limited the very freedom that so many Americans fought and died to defend. He knew that the US housing market was in a bubble but was too scared to push for control over Fannie and Freddie. His administration fought against Dr. Paul's bill to remove the implicit guarantee from GSE debt and to audit the Fed's financials. He reappointed Greenspan and picked Bernanke to replace him.

Given what we know, I don't see how you can argue that it is "indisputable" that Obama is worse.

 
At 1/26/2012 9:53 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Uh yeah, they are biased if they are a conservative or liberal group, that's the whole idea. But the voting records are based down the line on how individual COngressmen voted on key issues. Obama wasn't given the equivalent of an "F" on every conservative voting guide because he's a member of the Democrat party, but because he voted like the socialist he is.

That is not exactly true. It would be if bills were voted on using a stand alone model. But it is easy for someone to vote against some measure that you support because it is attached to a number of measures that you oppose. In that case the voting record tells us nothing.

There are other Republicans besides Newt or Romney. But Newt's lifetime rating from the ACU is 90%. He held the line against Bill Clinton's big spending liberal instincts during the '90's.

No he didn't. Newt was so corrupt and unprincipled that even his own party turned against him. As I pointed out, he voted for gun control measures being pushed by Democrats. Not only that but he made money by pushing Bush and fellow Republicans to pass Medicare Part D. He was pushing Congress to vote for carbon taxes. How is that considered 'conservative'? And have you ever stopped to think that the ACU may not exactly be truly conservative on a number of issues? After all, in the past conservatives were elected to stop foreign wars, not stop them. They did not support foreign aid for Israel and Egypt. They did not support deficit spending. Gingrich consistently voted for budgets that would increase the deficit. He has consistently been pushing for more government involvement in many areas. His record is actually very clear and we do not need the biased filter of some liberal or conservative group to interpret it for us.

I give you specific examples of Governors making serious policy changes for the good, and you reply with a completely irrelevant comment about somethign stupid Newt did. Do you think that's convincing? Go look at Kasich and Walker's reforms vs' the Democrats and the unions and tell me again how there isn't a difference.

Governors are supposed to do good, particularly when the writing is on the wall and the decisions can't be kicked down the road. We are not talking about the local or state level here but the GOP and Democrats on the national stage. I am pointing out the actual record. No matter who is in the White House and who controls Congress what we have seen is a growth in government, more regulations, more spending, more debt, more unfunded liabilities, and less individual liberty. To me that record makes the case that there is very little difference in substance between the two parties. But if you are willing to look a the data and prove me otherwise I am willing to change my conclusions.

End of memo.

 
At 1/26/2012 1:25 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"Dr Paul is the only true conservative running for the office."

Oh, please. He's a conspiracy nut job and a buffoon who porks up his district so they'll overlook the fact he's been in office for several terms with almost no legislation to his name to show for it.

"Gingrich is not to be trusted because you don't know what you will get from him."

We got the Contract with America and a balance budget. How is he the same as Obama again?

"There is no evidence that the GOP is any better."

Here again you completely ignored my point about the NRA and went off on a tangent about some spending issues. I can only assume you keep doing this because you can't address the specifics I keep bringing up. Because you can't.

"There is no difference between the Republicans and Democrats on Israel."

Complete and utter garbage. I can only assume you haven't followed Obama's contempt for Netanyahu, and his outrageous demands to cease building in Jerusalem.

"And speaking of Nixon,,,"

You are the only one speaking of Nixon. My claim is on balance the GOP is better, and there are lots of very good individuals within the party. Your claim is basically "some Republicans except Ron Paul are imperfect, therefore they are all bad." Nuts.

"There is no difference. Newt would try to appoint judges who would overthrow Roe v. Wade."

Uh Huh. Newt's Right to Life lifetime rating is 98.6%. According to Obama himself, "Throughout my career, I’ve been a consistent and strong supporter of reproductive justice, and have consistently had a 100% pro-choice rating with Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice America.”

Now mention something irrelevant to the topic at hand rather than address these specifics. You do the same thing regarding Bush and spending. Bush's spending and debt never approached the levels of GDP Obama has reached, so instead you list some complaints that he wasn't perfect.

"It would be if bills were voted on using a stand alone model. But it is easy for someone to vote against some measure that you support because it is attached to a number of measures that you oppose. In that case the voting record tells us nothing. "

Nonsense. That may be true with an isolated vote here and there, but over time the trend is unmistakable and shows up in the overall scorecords. Democrats end up on the liberal side, and Republicans on the conservative side, broadly speaking.

"No he didn't. Newt was so corrupt and unprincipled that even his own party turned against him."

You are seriously disputing his 90% lifetime ACU rating?? Look it up.

"His record is actually very clear and we do not need the biased filter of some liberal or conservative group to interpret it for us."

Obviously, you do or you wouldn't keep repeating this "they're all the same nonsense."

"Governors are supposed to do good, particularly when the writing is on the wall and the decisions can't be kicked down the road."

Huh? That makes no sense. Take a look at the train wreck Governors Brown and Quinn are making of their already pretty boned states. They are folllowing a clearly different path than Christie, Kasich, and Walker.

"We are not talking about the local or state level here but the GOP and Democrats on the national stage. "

Oh.

I thought you said they are all the same. Now you're saying except for on the state and local levels, I guess. So if Governor Christie runs for President in 2016, he will somehow transform into a political zombie, indistinguishable from Barack Obama? I think you have read too many Ron Paul newsletters.

 
At 1/26/2012 3:43 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Oh, please. He's a conspiracy nut job and a buffoon who porks up his district so they'll overlook the fact he's been in office for several terms with almost no legislation to his name to show for it.

He has put forward a great deal of legislation that the leadership rejected. He wanted Congress to sever the implicit guarantee to the GSEs so that the housing bubble would not get out of hand. Both parties rejected it. He wanted to stop sending money to Egypt, Turkey, Israel, and other nations in the Middle East. Both parties rejected it and all the money was wasted.

And I heard the conspiracy nut claims when he warned the US that putting troops in Saudi Arabia would mean an attack against Americans abroad and at home. The 9/11 Commission concluded that he was right. I heard the conspiracy nut argument when he argued that the Patriot Act would lead to indefinite detention for American citizens and the ability of presidents to kill without trial. But that is exactly what we are seeing.

It is not Dr. Paul's fault that most Americans do not understand economics. It is not his fault that most in the media and Congress have no clue about how free market economies are supposed to work. Pointing out that the Fed and the big banks conspire to rob savers of purchasing power is not being a conspiracy nut. It is understanding how the system works. It was not Dr. Paul who was spinning conspiracy theories about links between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. He certainly warned the voters that Saddam was weak militarily and that he was in no position to hurt the US. It was the neoconservatives who you support that made up the lies about WMDs. Dr. Paul was right. He argued for using the Christian concept of a just war, not for bypassing the Constitution by power hungry liars.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48Gfzgxh3ZQ&feature=related

to be continued....

 
At 1/26/2012 6:50 PM, Blogger juandos said...

"But Bush was supposed to be a Conservative"...

Wrong again vangeIV...

Conservatives like myself let out a general groan of disgust when Bush labeled himself as a, "compassionate onservative"...

Hence Bush's inability to use the veto pen...

BTW just on sheer spending alone that even though Bush did a bang up job of wasting money, how does that compare in real dollars to FDR or LBJ?

Now that we have Obama, we're seeing a new high water mark being established right before our very eyes...

 
At 1/26/2012 8:16 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Continued...

We got the Contract with America and a balance budget. How is he the same as Obama again?

He was corrupt and unethical. Even his own party rejected him and he had to pay a fine for his misdeeds. As Ann Coulter wrote, Re-Elect Obama: Vote Newt!

Here again you completely ignored my point about the NRA and went off on a tangent about some spending issues. I can only assume you keep doing this because you can't address the specifics I keep bringing up. Because you can't.

What specifics? As I pointed out, Gingrich supported anti-gun legislation. He has no principles and goes with whatever trend is popular. He leads from behind just as Obama does.

And I have pointed out the specifics. When you look at the debt or federal spending you see no difference between the GOP and Democrats.

But as I said, show me the numbers and you can change my mind.

Complete and utter garbage. I can only assume you haven't followed Obama's contempt for Netanyahu, and his outrageous demands to cease building in Jerusalem.

Nonsense. It was your Congress and the Reagan administration that censured Israel for attacking Iraq's nuclear reactor. Ron Paul was one of a few who voted against the censure. Reagan did not like the action because Saddam was on the side of the US and was against Iran.

You are the only one speaking of Nixon. My claim is on balance the GOP is better, and there are lots of very good individuals within the party. Your claim is basically "some Republicans except Ron Paul are imperfect, therefore they are all bad." Nuts.

Reagan, Bush, Bush, and Nixon is what we have as examples. They all expanded government and acted pretty much as Democrats. I find it fascinating that voters elected Nixon to end the Vietnam War. They voted for Ike to end the Koran conflict. But today Republicans seem to have turned back on tradition and want to start more wars.

The 'on-balance' argument is lame because the lesser of two evils is still evil. Why not elect someone who is not evil instead?

 
At 1/26/2012 9:54 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Uh Huh. Newt's Right to Life lifetime rating is 98.6%. According to Obama himself, "Throughout my career, I’ve been a consistent and strong supporter of reproductive justice, and have consistently had a 100% pro-choice rating with Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice America.”

The point is that Newt has been impotent. He has never been able to do anything about the life to right argument and could not do anything because his strategy would not work even if he did not change his mind the moment he got into office. On the other hand, passing a law that would say that the federal courts could not meddle in state decisions on abortion would have a meaningful impact and would bring the debate where it belongs.

Now mention something irrelevant to the topic at hand rather than address these specifics. You do the same thing regarding Bush and spending. Bush's spending and debt never approached the levels of GDP Obama has reached, so instead you list some complaints that he wasn't perfect.

First of all, Obama came into office funding two major conflicts at a time when the economy was collapsing. While he is a fool you can't blame it all on him because the problem was created by the Federal Reserve and decades of meddling by Congress.

When it came to the economy, Dr. Paul identified the bubbles much earlier than the Fed and the politicians and sponsored legislation that would have ensured that there would have been no bubbles. The fact is that the GOP leadership rejected those efforts as the Democratic leadership did. Both parties could not see the extent of the problem and were content to kick the can down the road and look the other way. When the crisis finally came the ignorant idiots in Congress were shocked at the extent of the declines even though Dr. Paul told them exactly what would happen several years before the crisis hit.

The same is true now. The unfunded liabilities are a huge problem for the taxpayer. The only way to 'save' SS and Medicare for the next few years is to end the useless wars abroad and to pull back the troops. The savings could help maintain the programs until they could be ended and replaced with sustainable measures. The only way to save the currency from collapse is to cut spending immediately and to reduce taxes to reasonable levels.

The problem is that none of the likely candidates are proposing any real cuts. Even the hyped up Ryan plan would increase spending substantially and could not be considered a real cut.

 
At 1/26/2012 9:54 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Nonsense. That may be true with an isolated vote here and there, but over time the trend is unmistakable and shows up in the overall scorecords. Democrats end up on the liberal side, and Republicans on the conservative side, broadly speaking.

No, it does not show up. Both the scorecards from the left and the right are heavily biased by the people who are creating them. Nobody who supported giving money to Middle Eastern dictators could ever be considered Conservative in the original sense of the word. And truly Conservative organizations would not be rating Congressmen as conservative if they voted in support for foreign entanglements, foreign aid, and undeclared wars.

You are seriously disputing his 90% lifetime ACU rating?? Look it up.

No, I know that the ACU gave him a high rating. But I also know that he supported anti-gun legislation, Medicare Part D, foreign aid to Egypt, carbon taxes, the Patriot Act, and many other measures that could not be considered conservative. He also kept voting to increase the deficit, something that no real conservative would do. Since when are real conservatives in favour of huge deficits and big government?

Obviously, you do or you wouldn't keep repeating this "they're all the same nonsense."

They are the same. Both parties grow government and the deficits. Bush and the GOP controlled Congress increased the Department of Education budget by 60%. Don't you remember when Conservatives called for the elimination of the Department of Education?

Huh? That makes no sense. Take a look at the train wreck Governors Brown and Quinn are making of their already pretty boned states. They are folllowing a clearly different path than Christie, Kasich, and Walker.

Yes they are. But the GOP was in charge for six years and did the opposite. Like I wrote above, Bush introduced Medicare Part D, began two unfunded wars, increased the budget for the Department of Education (and a number of other departments) by 60%, and increased the number of regulations by a significant number.

And let us keep in mind that both Mitt and Newt supported the TARP bailouts. So did most Republican governors.

 
At 1/26/2012 9:57 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Conservatives like myself let out a general groan of disgust when Bush labeled himself as a, "compassionate onservative"...

Hence Bush's inability to use the veto pen...

BTW just on sheer spending alone that even though Bush did a bang up job of wasting money, how does that compare in real dollars to FDR or LBJ?


He is in the same ballpark. Let us note that the FDR experiment was a larger version of the Hoover experiment. But what does this have to do with the issue that we are discussing? We have seen that under GOP presidents and GOP Congress the spending goes up just as is it does under Democratic presidents and Democratic Congress. My argument that there is little material difference between the two parties still holds up quite well.

Now that we have Obama, we're seeing a new high water mark being established right before our very eyes...

Yes he is. But a big part of his spending is the military commitments made by Bush and the entitlement programs supported by both parties. I note again that both Mitt and Newt supported the TARP bailouts. Both are big on military spending and foreign wars. Neither has proposed any real cuts in spending. So if the choice comes down to Obama or one of them there is no real choice. A voter would be better off to register a protest and casting his vote for Gary Johnson.

 

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