I'm going to make a rare exception to my long standing "no politics and no sports" rule regarding subjects to talk about on this blog, because this issue must be discussed. Warning, major rant ahead!
In a recent CNN article, it described Obama's plan to "tax the wealthy". Now what does he define as the wealthy? Married couples who make over $250,000 per year or single individuals who make over $200,000 per year. He plans to increase the maximum income tax rate from the current 35% to 39.6%.
Since when does it make sense to increase taxes on the 'wealthy' - the very people that have worked hardest for their money and provide the jobs in this country? Where do you get off telling me that since I earn a good salary I should be punished???
While I'm certainly no expert on politics or economics, it doesn't take a genius to figure out that you stimulate the economy by lowering taxes, not raising them! By lowering taxes, you put more money into people's hands. When people have more money, they will spend that money. If people have less money, they obviously are going to spend less money. This means the economy will get worse, not better.
Also, since when is it right to 'redistribute wealth'? Why are we punishing the successful to help the failures in life? I work hard for my money. I went to college, I learned a trade, I got a good job, and I worked hard. I made money. I spend and invest my money wisely. I'm doing quite well. I am constantly reading books on many different subjects. So let me get this straight, a hard worker like me, should be punished by being forced to help all the unemployed ignorant idiots out there that seem to think that they are entitled to something because they are breathing?
This whole Democrat obsession with bigger government, punishing the wealthy, increasing taxes to fund more and more useless government programs has bugged me for a long time. This is one big reason I've always tended towards the Republican/Conservative side of the fence. I've been a registered independent my entire voting life. I voted against Bill Clinton both times he ran. I actually voted against George Bush in his first election and voted independent. In his last election, I was one of those 'idiots' (as many people seem to think of us) who actually voted for him. Do I agree with everything George Bush has ever done? No! I disagree with his idea of establishing a Constitutional Amendment to ban gay marriage. Of course that idea didn't have a snowball's chance in hell of succeeding so I basically ignored that. Should we have invaded Iraq? I don't know. That's a matter for much debate. Should we pull out of Iraq? I don't think we should. Regardless of whether we should have ever gotten into Iraq in the first place or not, we are in there now. If we left Iraq now, the entire Middle East would collapse into chaos.
People, when are you going to realize that the government screws up everything it touches? Do not depend on the government to support you. Get a job. Pick up a book and read it. Learn something. Go out and help yourself improve your situation. You need to be constantly learning, constantly exploring new things. Read at least one non-fiction book a month. Pick up books on random subjects you know nothing about but look interesting. Talk to and surround yourself with successful people. Don't surround yourself with losers. Social Security is a joke. Anyone who thinks that they are going to be supported through Social Security when they get old are living in a delusion. Universal Healthcare is a joke. Any attempt to do that will cause medical care costs to skyrocket and increase the amount of bureaucracy you have to deal with to ridiculous levels. Put at least 10% of your income every paycheck into a 401K or equivalent. Max out your contributions to a Roth IRA. Invest in mutual funds long term. Buy mutual funds that have a profitable 10-15 year track record and then don't touch them. Don't panic when the market goes down. The market goes down one day, and it goes up the next day. It's done that for the last 80 years since it's inception. In the long term, the stock market has always made money. If you invest in good mutual funds, you will make money. If the market goes down, be happy! That means you can buy more mutual funds for the same money! Then when the market goes back up, those mutual funds you got at a bargain will be worth a lot more!
So, now that you've read my rant, you probably think I'm going to vote for John McCain. The truth is, I don't know. While he is a Republican, I am very concerned about his age. He's at least as old, if not older than Ronald Reagan was when he entered the White House. In the times I've seen John McCain talk on TV, he almost seems to me to already be a 'dottering old fart'. Being President is no doubt a very stressful job. I question whether he has the health or even mental acuity to handle the job at his advanced age. I largely kept my mouth shut regarding the presidential election up until now because until we got down to the 'Final Two', it didn't really matter. Now that we have them, I'm not sure if I'll vote for McCain or maybe an indepedent candidate. A lot depends on who McCain's Vice Presidental candidate is.
Am I against Obama because he is black? Absolutely not. I've been fascinated to watch his campaigning for president. He's the first black man that I've ever seen who has a very good chance to be elected president. He's also the first black presidential candidate that I've ever seen that didn't strike me as a complete nutjob (like Al Shapton and Jesse Jackson do). I'm concerned, however that the amount of racism that still exists in this country will at minimum not allow him to get elected, or if he does get elected, some racist nutjob will try to assassinate him. Should that happen, that means his Vice Presidential candidate becomes President. We still don't know who that will be, though there's been a lot of talk about the possibility that Hilary Clinton will be that candidate. Dear God, I hope not! That woman scares the hell out of me. She will do and say anything to get elected, just like her husband did. I never liked Bill Clinton either, but I could never quite put my finger on why. There was just something slimy about him, and I feel the same way about his wife.
Now, if I do decide to vote for an independent, you may be saying "You are wasting your vote. The independents don't have a chance of winning." While that is probably true, I don't consider it a waste of a vote. The point of voting is to vote for who you think is the best person for the job based on their qualifications and policies. If everyone voted only for the big two despite not liking either one of them, that to ME is a wasted vote. Why are you voting for someone you don't like or don't agree with? Vote for someone who you think is the best person for the job. If enough people realized this, we might actually be able to end this ridiculous two party system we have. I've often wished there was a way to vote against a candidate. However, there is no real way to do that, other than to vote for someone else. If no candidate matches what you are looking for, then don't vote for anyone. I'd rather know that I didn't vote for anyone than know that I voted for a candidate I didn't like. I made my like/dislike of this person known by not voting for them.
I have to say that up until I read this article about Obama's plan to increase taxes, I was on the fence about him. This news story has pushed me over the edge though. I will never vote for him now, nor do I think anyone else should.