“Crazy Days? Straight Ahead!”

“Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
Those days of soda and pretzels and beer.”

Nat “King” Cole — Summer 1963

— and Romney and Ryan and Boehner and Newt —
and Trump and Palin and Bachman to boot ! ”

We are entering a mean season.

Citizens of New York’s 26th Congressional District elected Republican Christopher Lee to office in November of 2010 (only seven months ago) with an astounding 76% of the vote over his Democratic opponent. Then Representative Lee took off his shirt and trolled for trollops on Craig’s List, a career move with public revelation leading to panicked resignation. Thank goodness for Republicans that New York’s 26th is traditionally known as one of the safest G.O.P. strongholds in the entire country. But, wait! What do we see?

Thanks to Wisconsin’s Paul Ryan, “Murderer of Medicare”, last week’s special election in the 26th saw Democratic candidate Kathy Hochul engineer a stunning defeat over Republican Jane Corwin by an amazing 47% to 42%. Every poll taken indicates without question that the House-approved attempt to kill Medicare as we know it, enthusiastically endorsed by Ms. Corwin until the last minute, was the singular deciding factor in an historic and virtually immediate, quake-like voter swing resulting in Ms. Hochul’s election.

Ryan’s Path to Prosperity = Political Suicide.

And yet Jeff Denham and every other Republican representative of the House, along with 40 similarly configured, ideologically driven Republican Senators, appear locked in a mindless, lemming-like march off a cliff of horrifyingly ill-conceived conviction, powerless to defy their invisible puppet masters.

I just don’t get it.

Back in that lazy, crazy summer of 1963, the top rate for personal Federal Income Taxes for the fortunately blessed was 91%, now slashed over time to 35%. All in all, Federal taxes for 2011 are the lowest in sixty years — since the end of World War Two.

The rich have not only gotten richer in recent decades. Elected surrogates have been brilliantly successful in blaming “Big Government” for the prolonged economic execution of America’s Middle Class. Even more sinister is the ever accelerating abolishment of social programs by the score and abandonment of any affirmative recognition of hard-won, long-accepted, time-honored commitments to a prosperous collective future in a thriving, vibrant, national union.

I would hope our President will now display the same courage, confidence and conviction which won him unparalleled praise from even his harshest critics in the bin Laden finale by — taking on the takers. They have a lot to give back. Let’s boogie with these bullet points:

* Any retreat on maintaining and bolstering Medicare/Medicaid as we know it will be unforgivable.

* Federal taxes must be increased by a full 10% on all net personal income above $250,000.

* Capital Gains should be moved upward to 35%.

* Investment in social programs curtailed by or eliminated through “budget cuts” should be restored at the soonest and increased thereafter as circumstances allow, i.e., when the rich again start paying their full fair share.

* Let’s bring home our troops from Iraq, Afghanistan and all those other places where American ground presence has become, in this age of deadly drones, an expensive, outmoded, completely unnecessary anachronism.

* The Republican Party of 2011 has been hijacked by precocious pretenders funded by an oligarchical cabal seeking eventual repeal of the whole New Deal. Then they’ll get serious. This threat should be met with the responsive severity it deserves.

* Washington lobbying should be enormously curtailed, if not completely eliminated as a formal enterprise. Why not? In most civilized societies, prostitution is illegal. Let’s write that up NOW. Then it’s on to “Medicare for All.”

* A Constitutional Amendment should be initiated aimed at overturning the Supreme Court’s horrid decision in “Citizens United” granting corporations “person” status in matters of free speech. Right now, it’s open season with major money ever more bold to keep us controlled.

* Under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution, Federal legislation should be drafted and approved eliminating bidding between states offering competing, ever escalating tax breaks for corporations and other “divide and conquer” opportunities for the insatiable elite.

And let’s not be shy about sharing our concerns with others, particularly those beginning to realize that cries of “taking our country back” has been leaving out the last two words:

“To 1900!”

9 Responses to ““Crazy Days? Straight Ahead!””

  1. Ellen Says:

    Amen Peter. Amen. I couldn’t agree more. Well said.

  2. Charles Walker Says:

    Ah, Peter C, it all sounds so good until you look under the blanket of Dem-Lib talking points.

    1. If you talk to anyone in NY 26 they will tell you that Corwin would have had a hard time being elected if she ran unopposed and even so, Hochul ( a conservative Democrat who wanted to deport illegal aliens applying for driver’s licenses when she was Erie County Clerk) was elected not because of Ryan’s budget plan, but because nutball and perennial candidate Jack Davis took the pivotal 9% of the vote.

    As to Ryan’s proposal, you have to admit he has started a national conversation about a serious problem. Maybe that’s what he wanted to do. After all, the only lemmings here are the Dem-Libs who want to do noting until the whole system collapses from its unsustainable unfunded liabilities.

    As to our “lazy, crazy (and now hazy) summer of 1963 when you and I graduated from college and the tax rate for “the blessed” was 91%, you conveniently forget as do most Dem-libs that that was the era of deductions. Remember those? If someone in 1963 was lucky enough to have an income of 1 million, he could hire a good CPA ( no doubt a LeMoyne grad) who, by judicious use of the tax code, would reduce his effective tax rate down to no more than what it is now. BTW, remember back in ’63 the SSI tax bite was nothing like it is today.

    Also we shouldn’t forget that in 1963 LBJ became President. His plan to finance the war in Vietnam was to tap the SS trust fund and leave IOUs for the billions the Dems funneled out of it. Today those IOUs are essentially worthless.

    I agree that taxes must be increased. Certainly a 10% increase in the top level is sustainable. But the real problem is that almost 50% of wage earners pay no tax at all! If we had a 10-15% flat tax up to $100,000, 15-20% 100,001 to $250,000 and 25% above, we’d be rolling in dough in 5 years.

    All social programs should be re-examined for effectiveness. Creating a “helpful” society out of our current “entitlement” society makes a lot more sense than continuing the socialist mantra of just throwing money at problems.

    I agree on the troops. We should bring ’em all home and let Canada, Japan, Germany, France and Italy take over as the world’s policemen. Talk about the Keystone Cops!

    The Republican party is certainly the victim of nutjobs such as Palin, Bachmann and Paul. However, no one has ever had to “highjack” the Dem-libs. The whack-a-doodles have always been at the helm.

    Lobbying should be completely outlawed.

    As to eliminating the “person” status of corporations, be careful what you wish for. You might want to do a little more research into the history of that before convening a new constitutional convention: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corporate_personhood_debate

    As to your putative attempt to communize the Free Enterprise system by mis-applying the “Commerce Clause”, I’d give that some serious thought as well.

    Other than that, Peter C, all is well with your post!

  3. petercavanaugh Says:

    A few words of explanation seem appropriate.

    Charlie Walker and I have been friends for over half a century, having attended Le Moyne College (Class of ’63) in Syracuse, where we both had the distinct honor of receiving instruction in Philosophy and Theology from Father Daniel Berrigan, S.J. — YES—THAT FATHER BERRIGAN.

    Jesuits encourage wide parameters of thought, which is why Charlie and I still very much enjoy each others’ comments and company, particularly since our positions are often at substantial intellectual variance.

    Rather than attempt a thorough, point by point annihilation of Mr. Walker’s
    long winded commentary on this post, I thought it would be appropriate to merely share a public posting from our Le Moyne Alumni site, wherein I reference Father Berrigan’s recent 90th Birthday after which Charlie sees fit to chime in. I only suggest that my friend, Charlie, TRY TRY TRY to more faithfully adhere to Father’s original recommendation to him so many years ago.

    LE MOYNE ALUMNI FORUM

    From Peter Cavanaugh ’63—Father Daniel Berrigan turns 90 on Monday, May 9th. His address is listed as c/o — Westside Jesuit Community–220 West 98th Street–New York, NY 10025-5661. Father Berrigan gave me the only “F” I ever received at Le Moyne for turning in a report on a book I never read. Properly focused, we went on the have a fine relationship over the following three years (’61-’63). Father Berrigan remains the source of definitive personal inspiration to this day.
    May 4 at 9:04am

    From Charles Walker — ’63– ‎”Sweet Mother Dingbat!” 90? Do you think he’s still creating murals out of broken bottles? He did give me the best piece of advice I ever received; “Walker, get your head out of your ass!”

  4. Charles Walker Says:

    Neatly done, Peter. Has nothing to do with current reality, but neatly done nevertheless!

  5. Charles Walker Says:

    Peter…how come you didn’t post my last comment?

  6. petercavanaugh Says:

    It’s right above your comment about your last comment not getting posted.

  7. Charles Walker Says:

    No, this one:

    BTW,I took Berrigan’s advice and for the last 50 years I have been exceedingly brilliant thanks to him. It’s only in rare moments of irresistible impulse that I temporarily and insanely slide back into a “Conservative Mode”, sort of an “ass id” flashback, pardon my Freud.

  8. Charles Walker Says:

    BTW…when will you be posting the picture of Weiner’s weener?

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