Monday, July 10, 2017

Categories of Trumpettes

And now for a completely unscientific analysis.

In my experience I have found that there are two main categories of Trumpettes.

Category #1 — The Greedy. These are people who make a lot of money. They work hard and either through talent or luck have managed to place themselves in a position of wealth. These folks don’t like paying taxes and they don’t like it even more than the rest of us don’t like it because they think their money is going to help people too lazy to work for themselves.

They think they should pay a smaller share of taxes even though they benefit from government activity far more than people of more modest means. If nothing else they have more to lose. When I talk to these people I can’t help thinking of the Phil Ochs song “The Ringing of Revolution.”

“In a building of gold, with riches untold,
lived the families on which the country was founded.
And the merchants of style, with their vain velvet smiles,
were there, for they also were hounded.
And the soft middle class crowded in to the last,
for the building was fully surrounded.
And the noise outside was the ringing of revolution.”

Category #2 — The Spiteful. These are your uneducated white working and lower middle class folks who struggle to pay the mortgage, put food on the table and meet unexpected bills yet they have enough money to buy guns, cigarettes and cases of beer on a regular basis.

They claim to be highly religious but if they ever met the real Yeshua bar Yosef they would be horrified at both his appearance and his ideas.

They think Christianity is under attack by the universities and educated people in the cities and suburbs. To a certain extent they’re right about this but they don’t understand why that’s the case. They don’t understand that hostility to religion is a backlash from Christians trying to impose their religious beliefs on everyone else whether it’s abortion restrictions or raising massive stone tablets of the 10 Commandments on public grounds.

These people look around and think they see blacks, Hispanics, immigrants and basically everyone but them being helped by handouts from the government using their hard earned tax dollars. These people will vote for anyone who will put THOSE PEOPLE in their place even if it means hurting themselves.

Like I said, this is an entirely unscientific analysis based upon my own observations and probably significantly colored by my own prejudices. But I don’t apologize for that. People in these two categories are never going to see the farce and danger the rest of the world sees. One group is blinded by their greed and the other by their hate.

Sunday, July 02, 2017

The Obama Economy

It never cease to amaze me when people talk about how horrible the economy was under Obama. The latest criticism had to do with the fact that the number of people within 125% of the poverty line increased under the Obama presidency while real income declined.

They manage this slight of hand by comparing the numbers from 2007, BEFORE the great recession to the numbers near the end of the Obama presidency in 2015 while ignoring everything that happened in between.

If you think the economic meltdown under Bush had nothing to do with those numbers then you need to have your head examined.

The percentage of people below 125% of the poverty level in 2007 was 17.0%. Thanks to the 2008 Great Recession the number ballooned to 19.8% in 2011 and then dropped to 17.9% by 2015. Looks to me like Bush was the problem and Obama was the solution.

Now let's look at real income. The real median household income in the US in 2007 was $57,423. Again, thanks to the Great Recession it dropped to $52,666 in 2012 but by 2015 it was back up to $56,516. So again, the problem was Bush and the solution was Obama. Rather than bad mouthing the man based upon no facts, maybe next time people should check where the real problem was.

When Obama took office the stock market was at 9,000, unemployment was at 10%, the economy was SHRINKING and the deficit was over $1 trillion. When he left office the stock market was over 19,000 (Nov 2016), unemployment was down to 4.7%, the economy was growing and the deficit had been reduced to around $570 billion.

All of this while avoiding a double-dip recession.