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October 21, 2008

Obama rally at Liberty Memorial

My wife and I attended the Barack Obama rally Saturday at the Liberty Memorial (10/19, A-1, “Obama takes on taxes, tough times in KC speech”). The event attracted a diverse and upbeat crowd.

Although many were unable to see Sen. Obama, most seemed elated to be part of such a historic gathering. The senator was poised and confident, and he connected easily with the audience.

But it was an act we witnessed between a father and son that spoke volumes about the commonalities we share and how far we have come as a people. An African-American gentleman standing in front of us expressed the wish for his son to see the man he thought was going to be our next president. The father dropped to his hands and knees, and as we steadied him, the son climbed on his back, peered over the crowd, then stepped down. His father stood and asked his son if he saw the senator.

I will never forget that father’s expression when his son nodded. It felt good to be an American.

Terry Sandell
Shawnee

Barack Obama was here Saturday. I am not a supporter but wanted to go in case I could ask him a question about his tax increase.

I was told by family members not to go because they didn’t want me to be destroyed by the media like Joe the Plumber.

Read that sentence again. For simply asking a question and getting Obama to admit his socialist agenda, the media is shredding Joe and not Obama. After all, it is not the question that was the problem — it was the answer. Is anyone afraid that would happen to you if you questioned John McCain?

This is what we have to look forward to, folks, in an Obama administration. And you want to tell me that he is the candidate who can bring people together? What a joke.

Christie Hampshire
Polo, Mo.

I attended the rally to hear Sen. Obama speak Saturday at the Liberty Memorial. I saw thousands of people of all ages, races, religious beliefs and sexual orientations come together for a common purpose.

Despite waiting in line for hours to get in, I saw a lot of smiling faces, laughter and excitement in the crowd. It was a peaceful event and a great day in America. I was very proud to be a part of it.

Karen Marcel
Overland Park

Comments

Engineer

devin
You obviously don't understand what I am talking about. Your entire post is irrelevant to my concerns. I am talking about Obama's stated intention to send treasury checks as a tax cut to the 40% that does not pay federal income taxes. Income level would be the only criterion. That idea has nothing to do with using tax revenues for the proper and constitutionally empowered works of the federal government. The apparently wide acceptance of this idea reveals and unpleasant and disturbing 'the world owes me a living" attitude on he part of many of our citizens.

kcstar_is_one_sided

devin -

I'm sure we all agree with your point about investment into new technologies with a progressive tax system. But we are not talking about that, we are talking about taking money from one group with the idea of giving to another.

devin

"I had no idea that people would approve of the confiscation of earners and achievers money to give it to others based simply on their income level. [...] Call it socialism or not, it surely isn't capitalism and it surely isn't the way this Country grew and prospered." -eng

Engineer, as I stated in a prior post, a progressive income tax [or confiscation as you call it] is a component of EVERY affluent society. Now I don't know about "giving" the money to others, but using the money of the affluent to invest in programs that benefit everybody (be they infrastructure, education, or direct assistance) is a tried and true philosophy that nearly everybody agrees with for the simple good reason that it works. Now you can call it confiscation if you want, but if you're unable to distinguish between taxation and theft, then I suppose you might also have trouble distinguishing between killing in a military engagement to defend your country, and killing a person on the street for their wallet. Would you call both acts "murder"? If not, why do you persist in calling taxation a form of "theft" or "confiscation?"

As for saying this isn't the way our country grew and prospered, I don't know how you can say that. Would you disagree that our country has grown and prospered TREMENDOUSLY since WWII? Progressive taxation and distribution of wealth into public works has been a major factor in our economy for that entire period. Without things like the Interstate Highway System, the Internet, satellite technology, and microchips, I have a hard time imagining our economy being as successful as it currently is, yet all these things came about through the government taxing the rich and putting the money into projects for the public. If government didn't lead the way in these initiatives, I don't think private enterprise could have done it; and as a result, I think America would be lagging and not nearly as successful as we are. A modern economy requires private enterprise and entrepreneurship, but ALSO wise government investment and oversight...and the only established way for government to raise adequate funds to perform these functions is progressive taxation.

Engineer

Jim
If you are trying to say that there are already a great deal of socialistic elements in government actions you of course are correct. In a modern society this is inescapable and even necessary. But someone paying their own medicine costs is not wealth redistribution. But Obama's policies worry me. For an insight into why I suggest you read Hayek's "The Road to Serfdom".

kcstar_is_one_sided

Actually Jim - you don't know what I believe. I have an issue a tax credit being given to people who pay no taxes.

As far as SS and Medicare, I am for paying back every penny with interest to everyone who puts money into the system, and then nothing more if that person makes enough a year such that they don't need SS or Medicare. If that person falls below a certain level, then I believe they should get SS and Medicare. We shouldn't kid ourselves, these systems are welfare and should be for those that need them. To continue to pay out "welfare" money to the rich who collect much more than they ever put into the system is one of the reasons the system is going down the tube.

Marctnts

"I'd say that was mostly due to a recession and a war, but your sentiments are noted."

I'd say that was due to an administration that didn't want to risk losing support for their initiatives by requiring the American public to pay for them while they went. People look a lot closer and think a lot harder when it immediately effects their pocketbooks.

Marctnts

Jim,

What I was pointing out is not just that the top 25% pay 86% in taxes, but that they pay this even though their income only represents 68% of the total. I guess I just don't see how this arrangement is "skewed towards the wealthy". It seems like they're already doing their part through progressive taxation to keep up a necessary velocity of money.

kcstar_is_one_sided

" I'd say you're out of step with your party on this. The GOP Congressional majority during the first 6 years of the Bush Administration never showed an interest in this principle."

I agree. I'd say that was mostly due to a recession and a war, but your sentiments are noted.

Marctnts

Means-testing requirements for Social Security or Medicare is a sure way to kill support for it. Right now, the system is supported because it's a defined benefit system, everyone pays and everyone gets a benefit based upon their contribution. That's why there's a cap on the tax at about $100k, because benefits are capped at an equivalent level.

So, I guess your support of means-testing is probably determined by your feeling about the system itself. If you want to kill it, support mean-testing, you'll eventually accomplish your goal.

Jim

Eng,

I find it odd that you and people like KC Star are denouncing any form of redistribution as pure socialism. Isn't it conservatives who have pushed for means-testing social programs like Medicare and Social Security? It seems like a dogmatic view like the one you espouse will undercut the case to be made for means-testing, because it will have to be made with redistribution as its central selling point.

John McCain, in one of the few proposals I agree with him on, proposes means-testing the Medicare prescription drug benefit. The argument is that people like Bill Gates Sr. and Warren Buffett don't need the taxpayers to underwrite their prescriptions. That makes perfect sense to me, but McCain is proposing a medicare system that spread the wealt from people like Buffett and Gates to seniors who can't afford it (or as KC Star would put it, weren't "hard working" enough before they retired).

Now that you've schooled me on this principle that redistribution of wealth is always bad and fundamentally un-American, I see now that the conservative idea of means-testing isn't conservative at all. It's just more socialism.

Jim

"Increasing the tax on those who either or lucky or who work hard, is going to just stop them from investing in the economy."

So is there a written requirement that the "lucky" or "hard working" (why do conservatives only think the rich work hard?) take their tax cut and put it to work in the economy? Because in troubled times like these, there's no reason why they wouldn't squirrel it away instead. Or maybe take a lavish vacation, which would have a limited "trickle down" impact.

You guys like to scream about class warfare, but you engage in it on a regular basis.

Jim

"I'm for tax cuts coupled with deep spending cuts. That is the only way to a more stable economy."

You mean PAYGO, what we used to do under Bill Clinton and haven't done at all under George W. Bush? I'd say you're out of step with your party on this. The GOP Congressional majority during the first 6 years of the Bush Administration never showed an interest in this principle.

solomon

kcstar,

Who are these "undeserving" you speak of?

solomon

Good evening Engineer,

What are your proposals that would counter Obamas? You say he hasn't outlined his plan, and I admit I haven't looked for it, what makes sense to you? Do you think things are fine now?

kcstar_is_one_sided

"Assuming he wins, a year from now Obama will still be mopping up the mess Bush left him. Nice try, though."

One more point. If Obama wins, he gets credit for everything on day one. That is a lesson I learned right from you Dems.

GCYL

“I'm for tax cuts coupled with deep spending cuts. That is the only way to a more stable economy.” - kcstar_is_one_sided

I fully agree with the deep spending cuts, however, I don’t mind slight changes in our current tax rates/laws as long as they’re geared towards “fairness” rather than “cuts”.

kcstar_is_one_sided

One of the major tenets of Socialism is the redistribution of wealth by the government. You may not see this as anything socialistic, but there are many in America who find that the hand out of money to those that don't deserve it, while seemingly compassionate, really just makes those people wards of the state.

Increasing the tax on those who either or lucky or who work hard, is going to just stop them from investing in the economy. And while you may think trickle down economics is a farce, it is true that investment by those with capital will create jobs. Creating jobs from the bottom up is a farce; people on the lower end of the spectrum do not have the capacity to create high paying jobs.

kcstar_is_one_sided

"I find it puzzling that many so-called conservatives who tout tax cuts all the time are suddenly screaming bloody murder about a guy who wants to...cut taxes. It's odd."

I guess I find it equally puzzling that so-called liberals who have been screaming about the national debt, now knowingly are going to add trillions to it with increases in spending.

I'm for tax cuts coupled with deep spending cuts. That is the only way to a more stable economy.

kcstar_is_one_sided

"Coming from someone who's excused the current lackluster economy by mentioning a Clinton "recession" eight freakin' years ago, this is pretty funny. Assuming he wins, a year from now Obama will still be mopping up the mess Bush left him. Nice try, though."

There you go again Jim. Please kindly provide the link to this, because I never said that.

Engineer

Jim
T had no idea that people would approve of the confiscation of earners and achievers money to give it to others based simply on their income level. The realization that many would sickens me. There is no authorization in the Constitution for such a use of taxes. Call it socialism or not, it surely isn't capitalism and it surely isn't the way this Country grew and prospered. Control production or confiscate the fruits of production, what's the difference? Just that, given government's ineptitude, there are apt to be lots more fruits in the second case. To me what is proposed is legalized theft and those who are being targeted will react accordingly. Were I in that category I would be in consultation with lawyers and accountants. I would be making plans to tailor my business to minimize the impact of this most unwise policy. I certainly would be putting any plans for expansion on hold.

 
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