Wally Wonders Why No editor, no publisher, you get what you get

January 31, 2008

Why I am supporting Mitt Romney

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , — wally @ 5:40 am

The field has narrowed enough that it is no longer just a matter of who I think would perform well as president. Effectiveness and electability are rising on my list and purely ideological arguments are drifting down. I like the ideals and issue focus of both Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee. However, I feel that at this point Mitt Romney is much more electable against a Democrat opponent and therefore will be a more effective candidate than Mike Huckabee. This decision left me with 2 options, Mitt Romney & John McCain. Both would make good candidates in a race against Democrats, so the choice comes down to who would make a better president and that brings us back to issues. And in the next short paragraph I will dismiss John McCain as an option.

John McCain may be a Republican, but he is a liberal Republican and I see very little difference between he and the Democratic Party front runners. That very little difference is national defense. I’ll admit I like his stance on the Middle East, but how can he call himself strong on defense while he has been weak on borders? That don’t add up. Bottom line: If I wanted a liberal candidate who said they were strong on defense I would vote for Hillary. At least she is consistent.

Mitt Romney scores high on my Fred Thompson list of big issues and challenges facing our nation.

Issues & challenge

Tidbit about Mitt

The ongoing threat of Islamist terrorism Mitt Romney states his position very clearly when he says: Jihadism – violent, radical, fundamental Islam – is this century’s nightmare. It follows the same dark path as last century’s nightmares: fascism and Soviet communism. Many still fail to comprehend the extent of the threat posed by radical Islam, specifically by those extremists who promote violent Jihad against the United States and the universal values Americans espouse. Yet, the consequences of ignoring this threat – such as a radicalized Islamic actor possessing nuclear weapons – are simply unacceptable.
The unresolved economic threat of entitlements I think this great quote by conservative Governor Mitt Romney says all that need so be said. “Every legislator and politician knows this spending can’t be justified, so why do they do it? Because it gets politicians praised — and re-elected. There’s no courage involved in spending more money. Drawing a line on spending is hard and fraught with criticism. When I vetoed $458 million of excessive spending in the budget this spring, I knew that community newspapers across the Commonwealth would decry my elimination of local pet projects. And, I knew that the Legislature would over ride most of my vetoes. In fact, they over rode all of them, to a chorus of community acclaim. But someone has to say no.”
The need for lower taxes to ensure our nation remains economically competitive and innovative
  • OPPOSING ANY EFFORT TO RAISE OUR TAXES — Governor Romney was the first 2008 presidential candidate to
    sign the “Taxpayer Protection Pledge” — promising to oppose any effort to raise taxes.
  • LOWERING TAX RATES FOR EVERYONE — Governor Romney supports making investment income and savings
    interest tax-free for middle-class Americans.
  • ABOLISHING THE DEATH TAX — Governor Romney knows taxing the American people three times — when you earn
    a paycheck, invest it, and pass it on to your children — is unfair. That’s why he will work to abolish the death tax.
  • CUTTING SPENDING — Governor Romney’s management philosophy is grounded in common-sense: spend less
    and balance the budget so future generations of Americans are not saddled with the burden of our nation’s debt.
The need to secure our borders The number of illegal immigrants in the U.S. has exploded in the last decade from 3 million to over 12 million. The increasing tide of illegal immigration has eroded Americans’ faith in the rule of law, put great pressure on our health and education systems, and compromised our national security as our ability to secure our border is questioned around the world. This tide of illegal immigration has made a mockery of our legal immigration system and been fundamentally unfair to those legal immigrants who play by the rules as they wait patiently to pursue the American dream. Sanctuary cities, in particular, attract more illegal immigrants and increase the pressure on federal law enforcement and border control.
The need to support families and to protect our children from the harder edges of culture Governor Romney fought activist judges who imposed same-sex marriage on Massachusetts and testified before Congress in support of the Federal Marriage Amendment. Governor Mitt Romney sided with life in the fight to protect the unborn.
The need to remain engaged in the world while remaining true to America’s principles The American values that have been at the heart of our historic rise to world leadership are being challenged everyday. These include, among others, the institution of marriage, respect for life, and the protection of our children. To remain a superpower in the world we must continuously and vigorously reaffirm these key components that have led to America’s greatness as a country.

Mitt Romney has experience as a conservative governor of Massachusetts, one of the most liberal states in the nation; great experience for a president who will have to deal with a Democratic Party Congress. Mitt Romney is a fiscal conservative with extensive business experience; great for a nation who some say is in a slump. Mitt Romney is a social conservative; great to lead an ailing nation.

Lastly, our nation and the world need a leader, not just a qualified candidate. Mitt Romney has successful high level leadership experience both in private business and in public office.

I am supporting Mitt Romney because he is a qualified conservative leader. That’s it.

January 22, 2008

Statement from Sen. Fred Thompson

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , — wally @ 11:17 am

1/22/08 – Statement from Sen. Fred ThompsonMcLean, VA – Senator Fred Thompson today issued the following statement about his campaign for President:

“Today I have withdrawn my candidacy for President of the United States. I hope that my country and my party have benefited from our having made this effort. Jeri and I will always be grateful for the encouragement and friendship of so many wonderful people.”

Fred Thompson would have made a stellar president and I’m sorry to see the best man for the job bowing out of the race. There are still other very qualified and capable GOP candidates still competing for the nomination. I’ll be waiting to see if Fred endorses one of them. His opinion will certainly be a big factor in choosing where I put my support. And who knows, perhaps come next fall there will be a ????? / Thompson ticket.

Today, I’m leaning towards Mitt Romney, or perhaps Mike Huckabee, but certainly not John McCain nor Ron Paul at this point. I’ve got a few issues I need to look into before making any firm decisions.

January 21, 2008

Fred Thompson: Tax Relief and New Economic Growth

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , — wally @ 3:19 pm

In spite of our leading a war on terror around the world and also in spite of what you sometimes read in the news, the US economy has been strong, is strong and will continue to be strong. That is if the right decisions are made and our congress lead by the socialist leaning Democratic Party allows them to be implemented.

Our economy has a solid foundation, but there are also areas of real concern. Our economy has seen the longest uninterrupted period of job growth on record – 52 months of job growth – but job creation has slowed recently. Consumer spending has been growing, but the housing market is declining. Business investment and exports are still rising, but the cost of imported oil has increased.

After careful consideration and discussion with Members of Congress, the President has concluded that action is needed to protect the health of the economy as a whole. The President’s advisers and many outside experts expect that our economy will continue to grow over the coming year, but at a slower rate than we have enjoyed for the past few years – and there is the risk of a downturn. A growth package can help ensure that consumption and investment is sufficient to protect the health of the broader economy.

White House Fact Sheet

Today’s news shows how the world economy is tied tightly to the US economy

LONDON — Stocks fell sharply worldwide Monday following declines on Wall Street last week amid investor pessimism over the U.S. government’s stimulus plan to prevent a recession.

“We’ve taken our lead from the Asian markets who have not been impressed by the U.S. There’s debate if there’s going to be a recession in the U.S. I don’t think there’s much chance of that though,” said Richard Hunter an analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown Stockbrokers Ltd. in London.

AP – Bellingham Herald: Stock markets plunge worldwide


And again from the same AP article, confirmation of the connection between our economy and the need for quick action by the Bush Administration and Congress.

“People are certainly nervous about a potential recession in the U.S. spilling over to the rest of the world,” said David Cohen, Director of Asian Economic Forecasting at Action Economics in Singapore.

“Maybe there’s still some wariness about politicians are able to come up with a compromise and act sufficiently quickly” on a stimulus package, Cohen said.

The word “compromise” is a mouthful for sure, when each day that a new Democrat is elected to Congress puts us just that much closer to a socialist, or perhaps communist state. How’d things fare for the USSR? How’s individual prosperity going in China? It don’t take a rocket scientist, nor a guy from Ferndale, to understand that you don’t grow an economy and create prosperity in a nation by handing more money over to the government.

Why do you think all economic stimulus packages seem to follow the same recipe: cut taxes, put money back into peoples hands. Why do some people keep electing Democrats who do the exact opposite of a stimulus package? Why don’t we make theses stimulus packages part of everyday government? Well gladly, President Bush is calling for parts of his package to become permanent.

Passing a new growth package is our most pressing economic priority. When that is done, Congress must turn to the most important economic priority for our country, and that’s making sure the tax relief that is now in place is not taken away. A source of uncertainty in our economy is that this tax relief is set to expire at the end of 2010.

Unless Congress acts, the American people will face massive tax increases in less than three years. The marriage penalty will make a comeback; the child tax credit will be cut in half; the death tax will come back to life; and tax rates will go up on regular income, capital gains, and dividends. This tax increase would put jobs and economic growth at risk, and Congress has a responsibility to keep that from happening. So it’s critical that Congress make this tax relief permanent. The White House

And funny enough, one Fred Thompson, who by the way is running for President, has been preaching this formula since long before our recent economic slowdown. So here is a look see at Fred Thompson’s plan, courtesy of Fred08.

The following elements of the Thompson Plan for Tax Relief and Economic Growth will spur economic growth and move the nation towards a fairer, simpler tax system on the way to Fred Thompson’s ultimate goal of fundamental tax reform.

Permanently Extend the 2001 and 2003 Tax Cuts. Tax relief enacted in 2001 and 2003 has proved critical to generating a strong economy that has experienced growth despite the war on terror, the collapse in the housing market, and other economic challenges over the last six years. Unless action is taken, every American taxpayer will see a massive tax increase after December 31, 2010. Allowing this tax hike will impose an enormous financial burden on American families, slow economic growth, cost America jobs, and make it more difficult to address the country’s long-term budget, economic, and security challenges. The Thompson plan ensures the following:

  • Reduced individual income tax rates, saving every tax-paying family a minimum of $600.
  • Preserving the $1000 child tax credit,which was doubled from $500 per child.
  • Protecting Marriage penalty relief.
  • Retaining Education tax incentives, including Coverdell Education Savings Accounts, 529 college savings plans, and deductions for higher education expenses.
  • Reduced tax rates on capital gains and qualified dividends.
  • Increased expensing of investment for small businesses.

Permanently Repeal the Death Tax. Current law provides death tax relief, but only through 2010. The death tax is inherently unfair. Under the Thompson Plan, the death tax would be permanently repealed, thus protecting millions of American families, including small business owners and family farmers, from double taxation at rates ranging as high as 55 percent.

Repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax. The AMT is a separate tax system that was intended to ensure that a few high income Americans could not use deductions and credits to eliminate their tax liability. However, because the AMT is not indexed to inflation, it is penalizing Americans it was never intended to affect. While in the U.S. Senate, Fred Thompson authored legislation that would have repealed the AMT. Consistent with that earlier proposal, the Thompson plan will eliminate the AMT as part of broader tax and spending reform. Until comprehensive reform is feasible, the Thompson plan would index the exemption amounts annually so that millions of middle class families will not become subject to this tax.

Reduce the Corporate Tax Rate. The United States has one of the highest rates of tax on businesses of the industrialized nations, second only to Japan. Even Japan is currently considering reducing its corporate tax rate. Economic studies suggest that the U.S. Treasury is actually losing tax revenue by keeping the corporate tax rate so high. In order to increase the competitiveness of U.S. companies in the global marketplace, the Thompson plan would reduce the U.S. top corporate tax rate (including the corporate capital gains tax rate) from 35 percent to no more than 27 percent, which is the approximate average of the world’s leading economies–the nations of the Organization on Economic Cooperation and Development. This tax reduction will promote U.S. competitiveness, encourage companies to keep their operations (and jobs) in the U.S., and spur continued economic expansion and growth.

Permanently Extend Small Business Expensing. Small businesses create two-thirds of all new jobs in America, and employ nearly 59 million Americans — more than half of the nation’s private-sector workforce. Women own a quarter of all small businesses, minorities are nearing the 20% mark, and Hispanic Americans are opening their own businesses at a rate three times the national average. Current law allows small businesses to write-off purchases of equipment of up to $125,000 per year, rather than depreciating hose assets over time. Making expensing of equipment and other small business items permanent will encourage greater investment and growth.

Update and Simplify Depreciation Schedules. The current depreciation schedules are outdated and in many cases do not reflect the realistic useful life of an asset. This is particularly true for investments in high technology. For example, computers must be depreciated over three years, even though they become obsolete in half that time. The Thompson plan would simplify and update these schedules to allow American businesses to make the investments they need to compete and create more high-quality jobs.

Expand Taxpayer Choice. The Thompson plan would give Americans greater choice about how to pay their federal taxes. This plan is based on a proposal developed by the House of Representatives Republican Study Committee that would provide taxpayers the option of remaining under the current, complex tax code or opting for a simplified, flat tax code. The simplified tax code would contain two tax rates: 10% for joint filers on income of up to $100,000 ($50,000 for singles) and 25% on income above these amounts. The standard deduction would be more than doubled to $25,000 for joint filers and $12,500 for singles. The personal exemption amount would be increased to $3,500.

Therefore, a family of 4 would be exempt from income tax on the first $39,000 of income. The simplified tax code would contain no other tax credits or deductions. It would also retain the 15% tax rate on capital gains and dividends. This approach would dramatically simplify taxes for tens of millions of Americans. In addition, the larger standard deduction and personal exemption amounts will still provide significant tax relief to families with children. This proposal would serve as a stepping-stone to fundamental tax reform.

Go Fred!

January 20, 2008

Still a crap shoot?

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , — wally @ 8:01 am

thumbsup.jpgI’ve read an article claiming a fractured Republican campaign. I’ve read articles referring to it as a rift of sorts. I recently spoke with a person who referred to the Republican side of the campaign as a crap shoot while also saying the Democrats had a real candidate race going on. I wondered, is this a crap shoot on the Republican side? I responded with something like having a competition between a half dozen qualified Republican candidates is great “crap shoot” to be in as opposed to having to choose between two unqualified Democrats.

Looking at weekend headlines including this Fox News graphic, one might think that Mitt Romney has a big head, Hillary Clinton has a big mouth, and John McCain sometimes acts like a dork. Or one might think that Mitt Romney is a front runner, Hillary Clinton has secured an insurmountable lead and John McCain sometimes acts like a dork. Right now the media is driving the show. While some trends may look like they are forming, I think it is still to close to call the race on either side. With a 1000 points still to go, does it mean a hill of beans that Huckabee is 6 ahead of McCain or even that Romney is 54 points ahead of Thompson? I am still definitely behind Fred Thompson because I think him most qualified for the position, but I certainly relish the fact that our nation has so many qualified Republicans competing for Oval Office.

So sure, things make look fractured, or even appear to be a crap shoot, but eventually it will come down to one Republican vs. one Democrat. One qualified Republican vs. one unqualified Democrat. There will be no crap shoot.

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