GOP DEBATE: Round One to Huntsman

Most chilling moment? The cheers that went up in the audience at the number of executions in Texas. What we heard was a demonstration of a deep, visceral, cultural, or spiritual, divide--not over whether capital punishment is right or wrong, but that killing anyone is something to cheer about.

Most depressing aspect? The lack of debate about climate change--a global crisis of epic proportions--and what should be done. Only Huntsman took that on, squarely, and well, striking his 'We cannot be the anti-science party' stance.

That the media questioners tagged this issue on as an afterthought during their "lightening round" was unconscionable.

Andrew Sullivan at Daily Dish says, "American conservatism is now actively contemptuous of any environmental protection. Green conservatism is dead in this country."

I don't agree; I'm not hopeless yet--but he sure was right about green conservatism up on that stage, with the exception of the Utah governor.

Most derailing moment? Rick Perry says developing new energy technologies is crippling our economy. Dems will have to battle to get out of the environment versus jobs framework. It isn't correct, but it's been set up strongly.

Perry, in his anti-environmental protection fanaticism, wants to lead the country in The Great Leap Backwards...

Most lunatic moment? Social security is a Ponzi scheme, says Perry. Ponzi defined: "a fraudulent investment operation." I don't think so.

Most snarly? Newt Gingrich trying to blame the press for pushing disagreements among the Republicans.

Most lost and confused? Michelle Bachmann seemed way off her game--no, her game is way off. Every answer seemed to involve a cafe she went to or a restaurant in which she talked to the American people. How quaint. Perry got flappy too, and seemed to deflate by the end.

Vague? Mitt Romney on exactly where those jobs are going to come from.

Most frightening? The prospect of ripping open most of Alaska and draining the Everglades for oil and minerals. Another cultural divide? Where was the talk of stewardship? But the Dems are going to have to do a better job on explaining how they're going to go about creating energy independence and security in this country, on a realistic timetable.

Most fun? Ron Paul. You gotta love him; he's a deep libertarian and stands by his convictions.

Most hypocritical? Rick Perry--anti-government, and Texas thrives on federal largess; look at defense and oil subsidies. And, p.s., interesting that he's all for a government program when it comes to vaccinating young women...

Hoisted by his own petard? President Obama's recent decision not to go forward with EPA on regulating ozone is heralded by all Republicans as proof that he, too, sees that regulation is killing the economy. He gave Rick Perry a huge gift there.

My vote, round one? Huntsman wins this one, hands down.


Anonymous said...

lots of us Texas folks are embarrased by Rick Perry and cannot believe that he is being taken seriously!

Madgew said...

Stopped watching after the executions clapping. Disgraceful and embarrassing for me as an American Citizen. No one stood out to me.

Elizabeth said...

I really just can't bear to pay any attention to any of them. I wish it was France and they all had to shut up until two months before the election. The main smell to me, for all of them, is bullshit.

The Architect said...

Social Security is actually worse than a Ponzi scheme, as Shikha Dalmia explains, here:


Read it and weep, or better yet, read it and wake up!


"Here are three reasons why:

One, a Ponzi scheme collects money from new investors and uses it to pay previous investors—minus a fee. But Social Security collects money from new investors, uses some of it to pay previous investors, and spends the surplus on programs for politically favored groups—minus the cost of supporting a massive bureaucracy. Over the years, trillions of dollars have been spent on these groups and bureaucrats.

Two, participation in Ponzi schemes is voluntary. Not so with Social Security. The government automatically withholds payroll taxes and “invests” them for you.

Three: When a Ponzi scheme can’t con new investors in sufficient numbers to pay the previous investors, it collapses. But when Social Security runs low on investors—also called poor working stiffs—it raises taxes."

Doug Hein said...

Thanks for the insightful analysis. I couldn't watch the debate. I was heartened to read in the Times and your post that Bachmann is fading into the background. Of course, if Palin enters the race everything will change. I agree with your observation that Obama not regulating ozone is a gift to anti-environmentalists (several good and angry letters about this in the Times today).

At 62, I can't be objective about Social Security. I've worked my whole adult life and want my money when I turn 66.

lostpastremembered said...

Homegrown green technologies are the only way out of the hole we are in... both for jobs and pollution.

Putting all of our energies into 20th century technology is so backward-thinking and ultimately self-destructive.

If those oil companies sitting on trillions of dollars would start investing in the future instead of sinking their gnarled old fingers into the past... our world would breath easier and our employment situation would improve dramatically. I mean, shouldn't every molten roof in NYC have solar panels???

scribbler50 said...

Most gratifying for me to read in your post? Your statement that Jon Huntsman won the debate. I wasn't able watch this side show but of all the people on stage last night promising to ruin this country, the one who frightens me least if elected is Huntsman. If for no other reason than his stance on science and the environment.

Also glad to hear that Michelle Bachmann was off her game, the sooner she and that ditz of a husband jitterbug down the road and into oblivion... the better for all of us. She's a national embarrassment. My only question beyond the obvious, "How could she have come this far?" is how desperate for money must Ed Rollins be?

Thanks for the rundown, Dominique, enjoyed reading it.

Priscilla said...

I thought to myself today, self, where could I go to read the most absurd comments about the GOP debate? Who will be the most skewed other than MSNBC? Right, Slow Love Life! That's the place. Not only do you manage to trivialize the debate, you mock the candidates. But I expected nothing less than stupidity from you and your fan base, all tree-hugging, butterfly catching anti-everything else crowd.

As for the crowd applause re capital punishment, it came after Brian Williams asked the question, before Perry even answered. Perry, rightfully so as Governor of a state that believes in the death penalty, stood up for execution. Take the case in Connecticut - where two thugs killed a wife and two children. Because Connecticut will not execute anyone, I am to pay MY tax dollars to support these two men in jail until they die? Heck no. They committed the most heinous crime in Connecticut ever, and I only wish it had happened in Texas so they could fry. Sometimes, people are NOT meant to be on this earth, no matter how much you seem to want to save every living soul.

As for the EPA and The President: do you realize that almost 40% of our energy comes from coal producing plants???? You shut down those plants and just watch your electric bill. And what will become of those people whose jobs you have snuffed out? Will you write a pretty story for them and tell them they will be fine?

You really need to get over yourself Dominique. It's most unbecoming to someone so professional as yourself to lower the standards of the most precious right we have as Americans - the right to vote and elect our politicians. You take away from those who find the process fascinating by injecting silly comments. This is serious. Obama has brought our country to its knees. We are about to cross into the darkest time America has known. And yet you seem to stand pat with him? I am speechless.

I expect a full review of the Presidents "Jobs" speech tonight and try and use phrases like "vague" "most frightening" and "lost and confused". If you don't, then be assured I will return tomorrow with another lengthy comment to keep you honest.

Doug Hein said...

Priscilla: Is it possible for you to respectfully disagree with Dominique without disparaging her character and points of view? It's difficult to listen to your ideas when they're presented in this mean-spirited way. And it's downright creepy to witness what seems close to bullying on a blog.

Priscilla said...

Doug: I respectfully say that Dominique is the bully. Others here have asked her many times to allow for a real discussion of the issues - coal plants and the EPA specifically but there doesn't seem to be much engaging here on this blog - mostly a monologue and commentary. Other blogs relish in the dialogue aspect where the host enjoys the opportunity to mix it up with the readers. Here, at SLL, it seems more the comments sit and very few get responded to.
I am willing to be respectful, if our host is as well but calling GOP candidates lost and confused seems far more mean spirited than MY words!

Anonymous said...

I agree 100 percent with Priscilla.

An Aesthete's Lament said...

I'm still shaking my head over this debate. And worse yet, those horrid candidates (excepting Huntsman).

Deborah A said...

Dear Priscilla,
I was not going to enter this fray at all, but I find your comment compelling enough for me to do so.
Not all Dominiques followers are "tree huggers" some of us just like her beautiful prose, pictures and lovely humourous stories.
I am a democrat, I embrace most of the parties philosophies. I do, however, have pause with the death penalty, in certain circumstances like the very incident you described I believe its warranted, that said, I would not cheer over it.
What I REALLY cannot understand is how you can say the Obama has brought this counrty to its knees.
He came into this job with the country $20 trillion in debt. When Clinton left office we had $10 trillion in the black. So Bush spent that $10 trillion plus another $10 trillion in his eight year reign. Wars are very expensive. Bush had the same unemployment problems we are having now, not to mention he instituted the tax cuts for big business, letting companies making trillions off the hook.
President Obama has made some very good decisions for this country.
Do bear in mind Priscilla, I too am speechless after watching the GOP candiates last nite, in fact I finally shut it off. I am very troubled at the responses.
I particulary took offense with Romneys statement about Massachusetts Health Care.
I know for a fact that he worked hard and diligently to push thru health care for all in Massachusetts. Then to hear Newt Gingrich call it a failure is just discusting. 88% of Mass residents are fully insured. This was a tremendous undertaking, and we do serve as a model for other states.
Its too bad that the valid points you make are riddled with hate. The same hate and mean spirit that I see in most fo the candiates that debated last nite.
I think you might have more to fear then President Obama, or Dominique writing her post today.

The Architect said...

Let's not attack each other, nor our gracious hostess.

Let's stick to the facts.

What is a "Ponzi scheme?" According to the WIKIPEDIA definition, "A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment operation that pays returns to separate investors, not from any actual profit earned by the organization, but from their own money or money paid by subsequent investors."

That is exactly how Social Security is supposed to work. It is supposed to be a Ponzi scheme!

Social Security exhibits all of the problems of Ponzi scheme operations, and if it were operated by private individuals rather than the government, it would be shut down and its proprietors imprisoned.

Social Security has survived as long as it has because of increasing productivity, and increasing incomes across the board. However, like all Ponzi schemes, it must eventually (to wuote the WIKIPEDIA again) "collapse under its own weight as the promoter starts having problems paying the promised returns . . ."

Social Security totally screwed the American worker. Rather than contributing to actual investments, which they actually owned and could actually bequeath to their heirs, the workers were forced to pay up to 12% of their gross income, off the top for a promised annuity, and no rights of ownership. And when you die, the investment that should have been yours, goes back to fund the corrupt bureaucrats who created the scam.

Those are the facts.

Priscilla said...

We'll all never agree. That's what's great about voting. You find someone who meets your feelings. What's right for me may not be for you Deborah, but that's okay. I'm very much of a Libertarian, an Independent. If it's any consolation, I haven't found a candidate who is right for me. I was just offended to the core that DB made a joke of the debate.

Democrats now own the economy. You've owned the House and the Senate. You've made choices that were passed to help our citizens. But now, those plans are not found to be effective. Blame Bush all you want, for wars, for the economy, but after three years under Obama and the economy is tanking, I say he, and he alone, takes the blame.

I will listen intently to his speech tonight and I hope you are right - that he comes up with something that picks us up. But am I willing to put our country into another $300billion debt? Am I willing to pay 55% of my income to taxes? I don't know about your personal finances, but I already give 42% of what I earn to the government. Asking more of me, as a wealthy citizen, might break me. I own a company that has stopped hiring. The mandates Obama has put on us has forced me to slow production. Obama's answer to all the nation's woes is more government and more restrictions and more rules. He plainly doesn't get how american business works. Shovel ready jobs to rebuild the roads will be great for the union employee, but will do nothing for anyone else. Obama is clueless. Clueless, Clueless!

Doug Hein said...

Much thanks to The Architect for reiterating that Dominique is the gracious hostess of a blog with the subtitle "A Conversation with Dominique Browning." The hostess gets to decide what's on the menu. I value the conversation and want to respect the person who makes it possible.

I read the stories about the murders in CT and have much conflict about the value of capital punishment related to such terrible crimes. I also have profound misgivings about Obama's presidency. But a conversation is about sharing ideas (and sometimes agreeing to disagree), not forcing our ideas on others. That's the part that troubles me.

Deborah A said...

Well Priscilla, I got my answer, you are a business owner. You are coming in from that front. Are you sayng that you don't get tax write offs to off set that 42%??
President Obama cannot just take care of well off wealthy business owners, unfortunately there are many citizens that are poor or unemployed, who are in desperate situations.
I'm sorry to say Priscilla, but, right now, the very last person I would be concerned about is a wealthy business owner.
By the way we owned our own business for 35 years. We paid our taxes and contributed what we could to the poor and indigent. Its called taking care of the less fortunate.
People who don't think they should have to pay taxes based on their income are wrong. The 42% you are paying with big write offs I am sure, is certainly equal to someone making $25,000.00 a year and paying 25%.
Consider yourself fortunate, that you have a good business with a big income.
Just try for one minute saying " Ask not what my country can do for me, but, what can I do for my country. JFK

debu said...

I have to ask. Priscilla, you purposely sought out where you could "read the most absurd comments about the GOP debate?" I'm still shaking my head over that. Why? Why would you do that?

Deborah A said...

To Doug,
I think for you, anyone who is commenting with statements you don't want to hear is "forcing things on you". What is going on here is just what you all are saying we should be having. The tone is a little rough at times...thats the sign of the times. People are unhappy with the state of things right now. Bear in mind they were unhappy (VERY) when the voted President Obama into office. Looking for the perfect candidate, the one thats going to give you just what you want, is fruitless, everyone is going to have to give, thats also a sign of the times.

Priscilla said...

Deborah: this will be my last comment on this subject. The small business owner is the very core of our economy. Add mandates and restrictions to what I can and can not do, and I won't hire. By not hiring, I am hurting the small town I live in. The residents shop less at the local stores and it goes from there. As my income dwindles from a slower production, the less I have to donate to charities, to travel and thus bring money to a resort town, to work on my home (and hire locals for that work). I'm sad you don't understand this very basic premise rather insist that you don't want to care about me because I am wealthy. I made my own success, one invention at a time. I worked 24/7 for the first 10 years my company was in business. I hired, I paid a good wage, I paid for benefits, I had loyal and happy workers. I employed at one time nearly one out of every 10 residents of my town. I earned every red cent of my wealth because I was in an political environment that understood the business person. Discard the wealthy and you discard 99.9% of how things get paid for those less fortunate. The Republicans understand this. The Democrats want blood from the corporations. Good luck to you as you continue the sad saga of blaming the wealthy. I feel sorry for you.

Anonymous said...

Deborah A........is small business a bad thing now? I think you, more than Priscilla have done more to show disrespect to the American public, many of us who are small business owners.

As a small business owner I get nothing from from the Obama administration, but paper work.
I pay my meager taxes because my business is barely afloat - why?
Not mismanagement like the federal government, but because the economy is so bad I have very few clients.

Jon Huntsman has my vote, as of now! He knows all about small business, and you don't.

I pay 1146.00 per month for my own health insurance - my husband is on mandatory Medicare - did you read that - mandatory, if you don't take it on your 65th birthday,and you wish to join later, you pay a fine, and pay a higher rate for your Medicare...and people like you don't think things are broken in our government.

The buck stops with Obama now...George Bush had his turn.

You really need to watch these debates, better yet, head to New Hampshire and see all of these candidates face to face - it will change your mind. Believe me, I became a Hillary fan!

profA said...

I did watch the debate last night and wondered what had happened to the party of Nixon, Eisenhower, and even...Ronald Regan. Though I did wonder if he wasn't running again as Rick Santorum's shadow VP.
Rick needs to get a life.
I sat there with my jaw dropped most of the time, not from their positions, but from the fuzzy reasoning and back pedaling. Dr. Paul seemed the fuzziest of all, in his discussion of HPV vaccinations. I hate to think what might have happened if he had been running during the development and distribution of the Polio vaccine. Sheesh.
Perry seemed to be all about states rights and it made me wonder whether he could be president of a country in which the states often have to put aside differences to come together for the common good. It will be a huge philosophical leap for him. He'll have to learn to use his brain in an entirely different manner.
I wish Romney would own up to his centrist self, but I think he is scared that he'll look too much like Obama and will be pilloried by his party.
One has to keep a sense of humor here and so I started the day reading Gail Collins in the NYTimes. So I leave with this thought from Gail. "It is the genius of the Republican Party in recent decades that it continually selects candidates who make the ones who went before appear better."

Anonymous said...

I am completely confused and horrified by what I just read in the comments. I come to read this blog because I enjoy what Dominique has to say. Sometimes I don't care about the topic, sometimes I don't agree but I think of this blog much the same as an invitation into her home. I find blogging extremely personal in nature and can't imagine anyone I invite to my home saying the horrid things I read here. Why would you come here in the first place? Why would you continue? I just don't understand.

Anonymous said...

Buddy Roemer speaks in front of the Chinese Embassy: http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/BuddyR

It is truly worth taking the time to sit and listen.

William said...


Couldn't agree more - round one to Jon Hunstman.

Most unfortunate moment: Not ONE question about Afghanistan and only one reference to the war in passing by Ron Paul who wisely said it's time to end our engagement and bring the troops home.

It's almost certain that the next president will be a Republican - and it's almost certain that person will be Rick Perry or Mitt Romney.

Most hopeful moment: Rick Perry's moronic statement about Social Security that he kept repeating and repeating. He shot himself in the foot with his big Texas idiot mouth and hopefully that statement will get him out of the running for good.

Deborah A said...

Just finished watching the President, well there you go Priscilla, he certainly spoke right to you and all your concerns. I hope you can stop seeing him as "clueless".
Anonymous, you completely misread my comment, why, oh why ,would you think I was against "small business". Bear in mind "small business to one person means 8 to 10 employees, to another 5000 employees is a "small business"
The person whose husband had to go on medicare at 65, I don't get it, most people are happy to start on medicare. Its great coverage and at a reasonable cost. Perhaps your husband had insurance thru an employer that cost him nothing or was gold plated. Well if thats the case he will be happy he has medicare soon, because most employers are trying to get rid of those very expensive retirement costs. They don't want to pay them anymore and are working hard to get rid of them. Oh and yes, I know how much health insurance cost, so why are you against reasonable health care for all???? What did I miss here?
I think what I'm seeing here is alot of misplaced anger. The economy tanked and for many many reasons. Certainly way to complex to blame one person or one party,
President Obama gave a great speech, he laid the gauntlet down, if people will just focus on the next 14 months instead of the election in 2012 we all will benefit.
Oh and William, don't count us out yet, not by a longshot.

pamingram said...

here's a mantra to repeat: Pass the American Jobs Act NOW....pass it along to all your elected officials. psi

Dominique said...

PHEW! I'm stuck on Amtrak, because the tracks are so close to flooded that we're crawling, and I can't get online....and finally I get home to this fracas. But OK.

Thanks all for straightening out certain visitors' manners. I'm not going to give that lecture again.

I most certainly did not make a joke of the debate. Far from it. I watched avidly, and made a judgement that the most weighty candidate by far was Huntsman. I purposely did NOT joke about people's hair, or head-cocking, or glazed eyes, or any other such easy targets, because I took this seriously.

But was I impressed with everyone? Not in the slightest. I'm frightened by some of these candidates. They are thuggish. Some responses were brutal--round 'em up and send immigrants home. Fortunately Huntsman put a stop to that sort of discussion, and reminded us of a missing element: humanity.

On to the substance of the matter. Coal. Yes, fossil fuels provide a huge amount of our energy. No sane person is suggesting that it would be possible for us to stop using coal right away. But given the climate chaos that is right up ahead--and the employment crisis that is here--we must keep developing new energy technologies. And no sane business person is against energy efficiencies; those dollars saved go right to the bottom line.

EPA, mandated by NIXON to monitor air and water quality, has a job that it must, by law, do. EPA regulations have not crippled the economy, nor have they cost jobs. There isn't room to get into the guts of this here, but if you are truly interested in the facts, please go to Joe Romm's Climate Progress; there is lots of important and useful information there on this subject. But just take a look all around you, at manufacturing jobs that are coming on line in so many vibrant new energies.

Now, as to the comment about capital punishment. Please note that my shock was not based on whether or not one agrees with capital punishment. It was based on a shout of bloodlust that went up when the question was asked: killing someone, whether you agree that it is the right thing to do or not, is simply not something anyone should be cheering about. Those cheers were beyond my psychological ken.

As is the rapid, angry tone you adopt, Priscilla. It is all too reminiscent of other comments filed under other names. And that bears some investigating.

Dominique said...

And Architect, I'm sorry, but I'm too attached to Social Security to see how it is a Ponzi Scheme--that's nefarious and criminal. SS is a social contract. We get money out, more people put money in, it gets funded on down the line, no one is being tricked. And, of course, the impulse behind it, to take care of the old, who are no longer earning incomes...well, I don't know a single person who has turned down their Soc Sec check. And I sure don't intend to, having contributed to the max my entire working life. And I can't say I would have done better with my money....

By the way, the first comment from the Texan, I want to note, because I entirely agree that so many Texans I know are horrified that this is the way their state is represented.

And one last comment: I recommend you all read HOT by Mark Hertsgaard, about what's coming up in the next fifty years, and what is already being done by way of adaptation and mitigation of climate chaos. Many completely level-headed business and political leaders, of right and left stripes, in cities across the country, are doing some amazing things to prepare--particularly in Seattle, Chicago, and New York. Inspiring. And terrifying.

No matter what people are saying up on that GOP contender stage--the business community, from the Waltons to many small business owners, get it, and are preparing.

Elizabeth said...

Wow. I've had some trolls and brouhahas on my blog before, but none to rival this! Thank you, Dominique for your level-headedness despite the scary sentiments and opinions expressed here. I notice, not without irony, that it's really all about the money, no? Protecting one's money, shoring up one's individual interests, etc. -- all in the name of liberty, freedom and scarily of all, justice. I read an interesting and quite shocking article by a Republican staffer of more than thirty years and highly recommend it, particularly to the vitriolic people who have commented here. The link is: http://www.truth-out.org/goodbye-all-reflections-gop-operative-who-left-cult/1314907779

It's long but very, very interesting and a welcome respite from the usual drivel one finds --

pamingram said...

thank you dominique for your calming influence and to elizabeth as well...thanks for posting the link to that article....it is long, but truly worth our time. psi

Deborah A said...

Thank you Dominique, thank you for calling Architect out on the carpet concerning Social Security.
his comment bothered me, I just wanted to watch the Presidents Jobs plan more then writng another comment.
Architect ought to ask his/ her parents and aunts and uncles how they would feel if they lost their Social Security benefit.
Millions of elderly Americans are living on a fixed income of just Social Security. Many have a small pension to enhance Social Security,but are still living in near poverty. If not for their Social Security check where would they be.
Maybe Architect is too young to remember the "poor farms" that were prevalent after the depression. Ask people in there eighties to tell you about them.
Dominique is so right about Social Security. Many of my friends are just starting to think about retiring, or have retired. They have huge pensions, an excellent benefit package, most have 2 or 3 homes mortgage free...they are financially very comfortable. Yes, some of them have already started their Social Security checks...they have put in to the system and most will be getting in back trifold.
I think comes under the catagory of a little knowledge can be very dangerous.

Doug Hein said...

It struck me in reading people's posts that we come from very different economic backgrounds, and it's easy for average income folks (like myself) to demonize people with more resources. But everyone has the right to express how things are for them in their lives and how they're affected by the economy. It does feel like ideas are being forced on me when a writer implies there's something wrong with me as a person if I don't agree with them. And the sad part is that it's difficult to be open to their ideas after this kind of interaction. Thanks to Dominique for continuing to respond to her readers with clarity and fairness. It must not be easy.

Deborah A said...

Dear Doug,
I think you misconstrued, like others my take on "the very wealthy"...I have nothing against wealthy people, even more power to them, if they earned it.
I simply said that I wouldn't be apt to worry about them as much as lets say someone in severe financial difficulty.
After this interchange of comments I'm beginning to think that either I am not making myself clear, or people are not reading them, including jumping to wrong conclusions. I do find it hard to follow the line of some comments too. Sometimes I can't really figure out what they are saying or for that matter where they are coming from.
I would like to extend my sincere condolences on the recent passing of father. I, too, lost my father recently, after a long fight with cancer. I know the feeling you have in the pit of your stomach that comes up out of nowhere...such intense grief.
I will try to be a better commenter in the future, making things clearer then I have been.

The Architect said...

Whether or not people need their Social Security benefits, the program is a Ponzi scheme. There were plenty of people who invested every cent they had in Bernie Madoff's Ponzi scheme, and they needed the returns he was paying them just as badly as some folks need their Social Security checks. But when Madoff's Ponzi scheme collapsed, they lost everything. Everything. And many people who are counting on Social Security today will likely end up with nothing, too. If any other retirement plan had 18 trillion dollars in unfunded liabilities, had taken 3 trillion dollars out of its reserves in order to fund a variety of entirely unrelated projects, and had no plan to pay out its obligations other than collecting more money from new investors, it would be shut down immediately, and its managers thrown into prison for a long, long time. The Social Security system is a fraud perpetrated on the working class. If there is going to be anything there at all for your grandchildren, your children, or even you, if you are younger than 55 years old, the system needs major, drastic reform, and now.

The Architect said...

And, dear Dominique, the fact that you are "too attached to Social Security to see how it is a Ponzi scheme" does not transform it into something else. Yes it works - the way all Ponzi schemes work, for a time. As you say: "We get money out, more people put money in, it gets funded on down the line, no one is being tricked." But it only works as long as there are more people to put more money in, and as soon as you run out of new investors, the whole thing collapses. In fact, you have been tricked. The taxman has taken 12% of the first 50 to 100 thousand dollars of your income for years, spent it on whatever pet programs he wanted, and has no way of paying off his obligation to you without taxing an ever increasing number of people -- who just aren't there. As late as 1965, there were 6 taxpayers per beneficiary, now there are only 3. 3 taxpayers can't carry a beneficiary for 30 years, and when the number drops down to 2 or 1, the whole thing just ends.

Anonymous said...

This type of comment is more then an opinion. Its just plain destructive, and inflamatory, similiar "to the world is going to end tommorrow"! Perhaps if you did not compare it to "a ponzi" scheme or Bernie Madoff for crying out loud you would at least come across as balanced.

mytwocentsworth said...

A teeny note to THE ARCHITECT, because I just can't resist ...... You are entirely correct! Hooray for your saying so.

Doug Hein said...

Dear Deborah,

Thanks for your reply to my post. I was actually talking more about my own reactions to wealth (and to Priscilla's post) and not directly what you wrote, but this posting of comments does get complicated and I understand your reply. I think you were quite specific when you talked about this issue and did it in a constructive way. I've never been a business owner, and I realized from your comment, even if wealthy, that they have their side, too. But I've worked in social services my whole life and like you worry less about their lot.

I so appreciate your condolences regarding my Dad's death and please accept mine for the loss of your father. I'm grateful to have had a him for so long (almost 90 at his death) but still have to reckon with the loss. I'm trying to learn how to live without him.



Dominique said...

Architect and Others, here's an interesting group of comments on the question of Ponzi schemes: http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2011/09/09/is-social-security-a-ponzi-scheme

Good arguments.

Doug, I had no idea your father had passed away; I just have missed a reference in a comment? I'm so sorry for that. All my condolences to you, I'm very touched at your comment about learning to live without him...and to Deborah A as well. It must be an intense grief...reminding all of us to enjoy one another while we are together here. Thank you for that. d

Deborah A said...

Just did what Dominique advised, read the NY Times article. THANK YOU, THANK YOU and lastly THANK YOU!!! What was even better are the comments...all well written and coming from thought process that I admire and agree with. Its so refreshing to hear truly well thought arguments and comments. Its inspired me to start picking up the NY Times again.