The obsession continues
So I get a couple of McCain-mails yesterday. As most of you know, I'm on McCain's email list so I can keep track of what kind of propaganda he's putting out there. The last three weeks of mails have hardly mentioned McCain at all, and they seem to like it that way. Yesterday both emails were about Obama.
Seems they've put together a new ad poking fun at Obama's celebrity.
And the email reads like this:
We can all agree that Senator Barack Obama is one of the world's biggest celebrities and every celebrity needs a fan club filled with adoring fans and Senator Obama certainly has his fair share. You might even be tempted to join this fan club.
If you love Senator Barack Obama enough to join his fan club you'll love higher taxes, massive federal spending, government-run health care and higher gas prices. Despite Senator Obama's lack of experience and readiness to lead, he's still considered dreamy and deserves an amazing fan club - he just doesn't deserve to be our next president.
John McCain stands ready to lead our country as the next President of the United States. He has laid out a plan to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and strengthen our economy through lower taxes and job creation. He is prepared to serve as our next commander in chief.
Most of the email, like most of McCain's discourse over the last month, is just silly fluff. There are only two sentences containing factual assertions:
You'll love higher taxes, massive federal spending, government-run health care and higher gas prices.[McCain] has laid out a plan to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and strengthen our economy through lower taxes and job creation.
So let's address these in turn.
1. "Higher taxes." There's two things you need to be aware of here: First, one of the reasons Obama's plans appear to cost more in terms of taxation is that Obama's not afraid to pay for his proposals. Obama doesn't vote for gimmicky tax breaks or tax rebates that really just send us further into deficit spending, run up the debt, and deflate our own dollar. Taxation is nothing compared to how hard deflation is hitting the family pocketbook. We are decreasing our own net worth! It's dropped thirty percent in eight years. THIRTY PERCENT! How hard is this to understand? It doesn't matter how many green pieces of paper you ghhave if the paper's no longer worth anything!
I was reading this analysis on how Washington's been trading our long-term solvency in terms of short-term superficial gains. The likely impact of this kind of recklessness is truly frightening. And McCain wants to continue this strategy - he proposes an additional $650 bn in tax cuts, mostly benefitting industry and the top .1% of wage-earners, while continuing to spend and spend. It's time we have somebody that's willing to stand up and tell the truth: there are no free lunches. Not for any of us. Obama, with his lone stance against the summer gas-tax hiatus, has already made it clear he's willing to take the road less traveled and call it like it is.
Further, the other reason Obama's plans appear to tax more than McCain's plans, is that McCain hides many of his taxes. Take his energy plan, for example. McCain wants to start reining in CO2 output (a good objective, btw) by taxing industry for its emissions. McCain will tell you that this is not a tax. But we all know that if you tax the industry, the industry passes that tax on to its consumers. His "hidden" energy taxes alone are expected to increase the average household's energy costs up to 30% - in addition to the inevitable increases due to inflation and availability.
So, McCain's taxation allegation just doesn't hold water. Let's move on.
2. "Massive federal spending." Well, as I mentioned above, equally important as how much you "spend" is whether you're actually going to pay for it. Obama seems willing to write the checks, whereas McCain seems to prefer plastic.
In addition, the two big-ticket items of late have been the wars abroad and the Medicare Modernization Act.
Obama, as we know, wants to bring the war to an end as soon as is reasonably possible. This will save us two billion per week. The war to date has cost almost two TRILLION dollars. That's enough to provide healthcare and education for preschool children, to rebuild New Orleans, with plenty left over. an act whose cost is grossly inflated by terms developed by industry lobbyists. Then there's McCain, whose commitment to the war is unyielding, and who seems more than willing to consider further engagements elsewhere.
The problem with the MMA - the most expensive "entitlement" program in history - is that it was, in part, written by industry lobbyists, and some of the terms are greatly inflating a fair-market-value of the program. Obama has promised to repeal the terms favoring the industry and costing us billions. McCain refuses to commit one way or the other.
3. "Government-run health care." Republicans like to bring up "socialized" medicine because it strikes fear in the heart of the average American. But the truth is that every time someone crunches the numbers, the US comes in behind most industrialized nations when it comes to quality and effectiveness of our health care system. In fact, in the US the rate of unnecessary deaths due to improper care is higher than any other industrialized nation, and several developing nations. Think about that for a sec. So, McCain...Senator Obama wants to overhaul the system...and you're suggesting that's something to be ashamed of? I think not.
4. "Higher gas prices." McCain, honey, higher gas prices are guaranteed. To even hint that one could offer lower prices is either deception or delusion.
5. "McCain has laid out a plan to reduce our independence on foreign oil..." You'll notice McCain doesn't suggest that Obama doesn't have such a plan. That's because Obama does.
6. "...and strengthen our economy through lower taxes..." As I noted above, lowering taxes while increasing spending doesn't strengthen our economy; such a policy jeopardizes it.
7. "and job creation." Again you'll note McCain doesn't suggest Obama doesn't have a plan to create jobs, because Obama does.
I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm getting awfully tired of McCain's obamacentrism. I'm especially getting tired of an obamacentrism that only serves to mock and misrepresent Senator Obama. I find McCain's rhetoric cheap and immature, in addition to misleading and evasive. I was convinced that eventually McCain would return to talking about his own policies and ideas, but after a month of his continued attempts to deflect from his own ideas (he does have some ideas, right?) by attacking everything Obama says, does, is, and was, (and often even what Obama isn't and wasn't) I'm beginning to lose hope.