Day: April 4, 2010

Poll Shows Most Want To Tax Rich, But Not Cut Medicare And Social Security!

A Quinnipiac Poll shows that a vast majority of people, 60 percent, want to tax more those who make over $250,000, and 70 percent want to tax more those who make over $1 million. This includes both Democrats and Republicans stating such views.

But 80 percent do NOT want any tax increases on those making under $250,000, and most are vehemently opposed to any cuts in Social Security and Medicare.

Unfortunately, it is not sensible to think that such an attitude can work, as the irresponsible cuts in taxes since the Reagan Administration have helped to create the budget deficits we now face! The Republicans have been responsible for most of this budget shortfall, by tremendous increases in defense spending and war spending, particularly under George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan.

Sales and income tax increases will be necessary in the long run, no matter what people might feel or wish. And future reform of Social Security is unavoidable, as it was once modified in 1983 during the administration of Ronald Reagan.

And also, Medicare spending will have to be modified, to get rid of waste and fraud, a lot of it caused by corrupt hospital practices and doctors who overbill with reckless abandon!

What it comes down to is there is no “free ride”, and the American people will have to learn that you must pay for what you want, and that you cannot expect others to pay while you gain everything as if there are no limits!

This, unfortunately, is an age of greed and selfishness, a new Gilded Age, which has been with us for 30 years and must now be reckoned with! We will have to limit expectations that the American people have become accustomed to as entitlements without responsibility!

Justice John Paul Stevens’ Plans To Retire Already Causing Problems!

The first hints by Associate Justice John Paul Stevens that he will retire during Barack Obama’s first term has emerged through an interview with the NY Times.

He makes it clear that he will decide soon whether to retire this summer or in 2011.

Stevens has been on the Court for nearly 35 years, having been appointed by Gerald Ford in 1975.

Stevens has been a very significant justice, becoming more liberal as the years went by, and becoming the leader of the four liberals on the Court as other Justices, more famous and notable than him, left the Court.

Stevens will be 90 this month, and would pass Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes in age next February, so might very well decide to stay one more year to break the age record.

However, if he were to remain through July 2012, which now seems unlikely, he would break the longevity of service record of the person he replaced, Associate Justice William O. Douglas, who served more than 36 years.

Stevens is proof that some senior citizens never lose their edge intellectually and physically, as he is an amazing specimen, who has clearly impacted the Court and promoted limitations on executive power, and has been unafraid to clarify his differences with the Antonin Scalia wing of the Court.

But even as he contemplates retirement, the issue of who would replace him is causing waves in the Senate.

Democratic Senator Arlen Specter suggests that Stevens wait to 2011, hoping for more consensus. However, Republican Senator Jon Kyl hints at a filibuster for any nominee that President Obama might nominate!

Isn’t this great, that even before the Associate Justice announces his retirement, already the Republican party is ready to bottleneck his replacement, as they have done for many presidential appointments, which has led to recess appointments by the President when the Easter break began! 🙁

The problem is there cannot be a recess appointment to the Supreme Court, and lack of a Justice for a long time will impede the ability of the Court to do its work!

But apparently, the Republican party has no concern, but to continue to prevent any progress forward by the Obama Presidency! When will they finally act responsibly and stop the government from operating in the name of the American people? 🙁

The presumption is, if this obstructionism continues, that only the American people, in their hoped for wisdom, will punish the GOP by surprising everyone and NOT awarding major gains in Congress this year to the Republicans.

But precisely for that reason, it would be better from a logistical view, to have Stevens leave now, before a likely gain in seats in the Senate by the Republicans, which would make confirmation of a nominee in 2011 more difficult than even in 2010!