Wednesday, January 30, 2008
Workouts will be greatly reduced until I can walk normally.
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It seems that Edwards is dropping out and someone asked me what I thought of Obama. Being a staunch third party guy, I hadn't thought much about him, other than he sounds like Edwards with a two week delay.
I thought I would look at Economy on his website and see if I could gather thoughts......
FIRST OFF!!!! Tax "Fairness" for the middle-class. He wants to reduce taxes, crazy! Taxes are our dues. It's how we get the services we often take for granted such as roads, fire departments, parks, clean water. If he wants to put more money in the pockets of people who are working he should create a LIVING WAGE!!! The US has one of the largest income inequalities in the world. Pay working people more! That will generate more spending, which creates more jobs, which provides more taxes for services.
If he wants to to make Tax Fairness then he needs to increases taxes to the rich and corporations. Amazingly not mentioned. The rich have benefited most from the infrastructure created as public goods. Wally world uses roads, airports, ports, and other public infrastructure than you or I.
The mortgage stuff sounds OK. A lot of his stuff on making tax filing easier and the Earned Income Tax Credit, reducing taxes to seniors, etc. Sounds OK. I still think that increasing incomes would go further and still allow the country to invest. Where are we going to get money for schools without taxes?
College credit? Just make education free!
Early childhood education. He is for expanding which is good. Best way to go? Universal Child Care! (Oh, and of course pay child care workers well!)
He talks about recruiting teachers. He should include paying them well, and paying school support staff well. Public school teaching still has a pay gap as it was once seen as a "woman's job" - now let's get real, and pay people what the true value of educating our next generation is worth! Hopefully he addresses pay gaps somewhere. Let me see....
Hmmmm, Trade Agreements... They have generally been bad for all the workers involved. He wants to share the benefits of globalization. The assumption here is that "growth" as it has been envisioned is helpful. But we've seen that the growth in the 90s led to more inequality and an increase in poverty.
Unless he's talking - and none of the liberal party types are talking about this - about sustained efforts to redistribute economic resources among the members of society, he will not have much impact on poverty. The ideology that "economic growth" is more important than workers and regular citizens being able to meet their basic needs leads us to policies that encourage companies to abandon communities to seek profits, and punishes workers who cross national boundaries to do the same.
He is sounding good on the need for job retraining. Hopefully he's also for full employment....
OK, support for businesses with health care. Why not just go for Universal Health Care?
Expand loans for small businesses, nice. Focusing on reducing his revenue to get things done - typical and not smart.
Oooh, cracking down on corporate tax havens! Nice, something there, way at the bottom though. Oh wait!!!! Check this out, WAY DOWN at the bottom of the page.
wait for it...
LIVING WAGE AND UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE!!!!
So his prioritization of his message turned me off before I would have gotten there if I wasn't working on this blog.
Let's see what he says...
"As president, Obama would further raise the minimum wage, index it to inflation and increase the Earned Income Tax Credit to make sure that full-time workers can earn a living wage that allows them to raise their families and pay for basic needs such as food, transportation, and housing -- things so many people take for granted."
Doesn't say how much. But indexing to inflation and increasing the Earned Income Tax Credit are excellent! That means that people advocating for a living wage next round need to aim for the stars! My vote - a 30 hour work week at $20 an hour, maybe $25.
His plan sounds complicated. England, Canada, Cuba, Sweden, Norway, France and many others have Universal Health Care, wonder if there is an easier way...
Let's see other good points, increasing after school programs, extending family medical leave, and flexible work schedules. Focusing on "middle class" as opposed to "working class" - well that gets votes I guess.
So I would say he's probably the best Democrat left in the race. Maybe I should see if the Kucinich platform is still up. Will I vote for him? Depends on what third party candidates get on the ballot. I believe in voting for my values and not just someone who has a chance at winning.
If you click on the pdf summary of his plan supporting striking workers, unions and fighting attacks on workers comes up. Too bad they are not primary to his messaging. All I've seen on his TV ads wouldn't lead me to see this.