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  1. #11
    Whisky Old & Women Young Speed Gavroche's Avatar
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    You are talking about the voters of the Democrats, I guess.
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  2. #12
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speed Gavroche View Post
    You are talking about the voters of the Democrats, I guess.
    Except, factually, we know a good chunk of these people are reliable Republican voters. It's one of several reasons that Romney's comments were very stupid.
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  3. #13
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    To start, these 47% who pay no federal income tax do pay federal payroll tax, if employed, as well as state and local taxes, including property, excise, use, and sales taxes. These taxes consume 12-20% of the income of the nation's poorest citizens. A large number of these people are elderly, who paid income tax all their working lives, and now live on substantially reduced incomes. Others are students who will be paying substantial federal income tax throughout their career, provided they can actually find work.

    Romney was right about one thing, though. Around 47% of the people probably won't vote for him, no matter what. A comparable amount might vote for him (or at least against Obama) no matter what. This means the entire campaign is focused on swaying the votes of less than 10% of the population. Good strategy, perhaps, but exposing it plainly in a public forum is not. Obama is right about one thing, too. When you are president, you have to work for everyone, even those who didn't vote for you.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  4. #14
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iwakar View Post
    I think Stewart covered it well last night in this clip -- Entitlement Society.
    That's a great bit, and it's pretty amazing how Fox News has pretty much reached the point of trying to persuade America that the earth is flat. Rather than defending Romney as misunderstood at that fund raiser, they are saying he's perfectly understood and telling the truth. The whole thing about 47% being mooching dependents is a Goebbels caliber lie. That's totally fair, so sue me if I Godwinned the discussion.
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  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    The whole thing about 47% being mooching dependents is a Goebbels caliber lie.
    What % would you say are?

  6. #16
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zarathustra View Post
    What % would you say are?
    I don't have figures for who those are, but to fit Romney's description (and perhaps more importantly the description that's been expounded by Fox News) they'd be people paying little to no taxes of any kind, for a an indefinite period, contributing virtually nothing in the process. I'm sure those people exist, and perhaps the hopelessly insane and inmates with life sentences are some easy examples. There have to be less extreme cases.

    A great chunk of people in the 47% that's being referred to here pay all kinds of taxes, have not always had and may not continue to always have the income tax exemption, and often are people who are eligible for such exemptions precisely because they are doing valuable things that need to made easier or be incentivized (parents, students, veterans, etc...).
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  7. #17
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    A good piece from one of my favorite op-ed writers:

    America's Growing Welfare State Is a Problem

    September 20, 2012
    By Robert Samuelson

    WASHINGTON -- It is a measure of Mitt Romney's inadequacies as a candidate that he has not been able to turn his latest gaffe -- his dismissive reference to the 47 percent of Americans who "are dependent upon government" -- into a teachable moment and a campaign advantage. The fact that roughly half of Americans receive some government payment to which they feel morally entitled is a big part of our budget problem. It's an inconvenient fact, but it's still a fact.

    Dealing with it ought to define the next president's mission. Somehow, he must question the status quo without insulting the roughly 150 million Americans who receive federal benefits. Who deserves support and why? How much and under what conditions? Unless we ask these questions and find grounds for trimming some benefits, the budget impasse will continue and risk dangerous outcomes: a future financial crisis; crushing tax increases; or draconian cuts in programs (defense, research, highways) that aren't payments to individuals.

    This is arithmetic, as Bill Clinton might say. In 2011, payments to individuals were 65 percent of federal spending, up from 26 percent in 1960. America has created a welfare state, whether or not Americans admit it.

    Actually, the share of people who receive federal benefits exceeds Romney's 47 percent. Based on its Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP), the Census Bureau estimates that in mid-2011 -- the latest available figures -- the number of people with benefits came to 149.8 million, or 49 percent of the population. But this figure is too low, because SIPP doesn't include several major programs (farm subsidies and college loans and grants). With these, the total probably exceeds 50 percent.

    The big programs are well-known. In 2011, Social Security had 49.6 million recipients and Medicare 45.6 million, most of them overlapping. There were 5.2 million Americans with unemployment compensation and 3.2 million with veterans' benefits. An estimated 107.2 million people received "means-tested" benefits available to those with low incomes. Medicaid had 80.5 million beneficiaries, food stamps 48.3 million and WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) 23.1 million. Among households with means-tested benefits, almost a third received three or more.

    President Obama hasn't controlled this spending or opened a debate about which benefits might -- in the national interest -- be curbed. His reluctance reflects conventional wisdom that questioning benefits is a political loser because it arouses the fears of millions of potential voters. But Obama's expediency leaves Romney an opening, albeit a high-risk one. He could seize the moral high ground by posing the hard questions necessary for a future that does not penalize economic growth or overburden today's young with taxes or debt.

    This is an opportunity that Romney seems unwilling or unable to take, his brief engagement with Medicare aside. After the video's release, he might have apologized for his clumsy language, while still urging voters to find a better balance between America's past promises and future prospects. But he seems to lack the rhetorical skills to convince people why a rigid defense of the welfare state - effectively, Obama's position -- threatens the welfare of today's young and tomorrow's children.

    Instead, Romney's 47 percent comment implies that anyone who receives a federal benefit is a deadbeat. We're talking about half the population! One test of presidential competence is the capacity to persuade people that what's good for the country is ultimately good for them, even if it involves short-term sacrifice. On the campaign trail, Romney is failing that test.

    Copyright 2012, Washington Post Writers Group
    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/art...te_115500.html

  8. #18
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    It seems to me like that has relatively little to do with what Romney and his pundit troopers are saying. Saying current social programs are problematically expensive does not translate into nearly half of Americans being parasites. One can seek to solve the first problem without ever suggesting the second problem is real.
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  9. #19
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    That was fundraising rhetoric aimed at raising money from wealthy, conservative donors.

    It was not sober phrasing that one would use in an objective analysis of the truth.

  10. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    Except, factually, we know a good chunk of these people are reliable Republican voters. It's one of several reasons that Romney's comments were very stupid.
    Yeah but no one is going to self-identify with or as part of the 47% its not like the 1% overclass.

    As a result those voters will carry on voting for the Republicans, probably be more motivated to do so than ever by this very remark, because they believe that when republicans talk like this they always mean "someone else".

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