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September 18, 2012 - 9:08am

Today's Poll: Are 47 percent of the people in the U.S. takers, dependent on government?

posted by Howard B. Owens in polls.
Justin Burger
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Seriously? Those that voted yes need to stop drinking the Kool-Aid. While we are tossing around ridiculous thoughts and statements, how about chewing on this one...Do you live in the United States? Well, you are dependent on the government...from federal on down to local, they provide you police/fire/military protections, Roads/Infrastructure, Water/Sewers, Courts, etc etc etc...

Jeff Allen
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If you pay no income tax, and collect money from the same government that collects no tax from you in order to pay for food and living expenses, then you are dependent on that government. That being said there a a myriad of circumstances under which that occurs. Some have legitimate reasons beyond their control (the purpose it was meant for) and some fall under the category of generational recipients (what it was not meant for) but nonetheless all are dependent on the government for their survival. Now take those same people and convince them via the Presidential bully pulpit and an all too willing accomplice media that if they vote for anyone but the incumbent all those benefits will cease and they will find themselves living on the streets, then the politics of false fear have won the day. I love how the media is treating this as a "gotcha" moment for Romney. That somehow they infiltrated the behind closed doors secret meetings of rich people and what they say when they think the little people are not around. I am glad that Romney did not apologize for the comments, only conceded that he could have phrased it better, because bottom line is he told a hard truth.

Mark Brudz
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So why should only half the people in the nation pay for those services?

Don't give me the pay roll tax argument either, payroll taxes are for social security and medicare NOT federal income tax.

There is nothing that Romney said that isn't true and hasn't been said by all the pundits

'Drinking the Kool Aide" is believing that you are entitled to all these services that you mention with out paying for them

Tim Miller
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Oh - the irony of this claim by Romney when he has billionaires paying for ads to get him elected so that they pay lower taxes.

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What's the difference? If either Romney or Obama get elected in November there will still be a huge number of people sucking off the taxpayers, it's just a matter of whom. Believing either will change that is drinking the real Kool-Aid.

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No more ironic than people making $30K sending $10 and $25 to Obama so that someone else can pay their taxes, wouldn't you say?

Mark Brudz
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Mostly true Dave, it is just a question of who will garner more teat suckers.

Mark Brudz
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Removed Double Post

Dave Olsen
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For Instance: If Romney drops the Corporate Tax Rate as he is promising, what does anyone think the chances are that Xerox or the other companies who have done this will re-instate health coverage for their retirees over 65? All my life I've been told that I shouldn't expect to have my cake and eat it too, and I've also tried to not be envious, but it's getting a lot harder.

http://www.democratandchronicle.com/article/20120918/BUSINESS/309180017/...|h

Jeff Allen
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Tim, who do you suppose is paying for Obama's ads? Please don't tell me all the "grassroots" $5 and $10 donations from the working people. They are paid for by billionaires, SuperPac donors and bundlers who just happen to have different names than those contributing to Romney's campaign. And as in his first term, they will expect the same payback through contracts, subsidies, legislative favors, bailouts and crony capitalism if he is re-elected.

Lorie Longhany
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Just who is included in that 47%? Our elderly parents living on SS? Our disabled veterans and actual fighting men and women who are exempt through military differential pay? How about the single working parent whose income falls below the poverty level? Is it anyone receiving the EITC enacted by President Ronald Reagan? Is it the college student who is receiving a Pell grant? I guess it's all of the above since Romney lumped all the 47%.

And how many out there who voted yes can honestly say they haven't at one time or another received some kind of assistance? I am not in the 47%, but when my husband was serving in the Corp in the early 80's we fell way below the poverty level. WIC and Reagan's EITC fed and clothed my kids. Were we "takers"? Was my husband a "moocher" as he deployed in the North Atlantic on Cold War exercises?

You can't pick and chose here folks.

Sarah Christopher
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I can't say for sure, but I would say about 47% of the time the person in front of me at Tops or Walmart is using a benefits card....about 1/2 are elderly people that most likely need/deserve government assistance to survive.....I can't say as to why the other 1/2 receive services

kevin kretschmer
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Per Mr. Romney's own words at the fund-raiser where today's daily dose of media distraction from reality is being conjured up: “There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…... Forty-seven percent of Americans pay no income tax......."

Look at the shiny thingy! Isn't it pretty?

Jeff Allen
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Lorie, you missed the point by allowing the emotional argument to supercede the logical argument. All of those whom you mention are deserving recipients of assistance but they also make up a VERY small percentage of the 47%. The point that Romney was making is that the President and the left have successfully played on the fear of those recipients by dangling the benefits over their heads and falsely claiming that Republicans hate them and want to take their benefits away. They have in essence locked up their vote by virtue of extortion by perception. It is the swayable independent vote who may or may not look at the facts and not the fiction who he is talking about.
Lyndon Johnson understood the concept well and phrased it in a way that perhaps he had hoped would never get published.

Mark Brudz
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In context Laurie, his statements did not imply or suggest anything of the kind.

He is absolutely correct in his context and his math

46-47% will vote for President Obama no matter what
46-47% will vote for Governor Romney no matter waht

And the Battle is for the 5-6% who do not fall in that category.

That is all that he was saying, that is all the pundits were saying, and no matter how much partisan BS either way it doesn't change the fact that that is pretty much the truth

Shannon Laurer
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Let's look at it this way then Lorie, take that 47% and make it 100% for all you mentioned above, including those abusing the system, I would confidently say that the "abusers" would then make up more then 47% of that 100% ! That is what is making people upset and whom the "yes" votes are fed up with. If welfare was made up of only those that really and truly needed it, we would NOT even be having this discussion! Sadly the "abusers" outnumber those truly in need and it needs to change now!

Oh and at 42 years of age I can loudly state I have NEVER received a check from the goverment that I hadn't already paid to them in taxes!

Justin Burger
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The fact of the matter is that the 47% that Romney spoke about (remember, he's talking about the 47% of Americans who are set on voting for Obama) are not all non-tax paying government leeches. It's statistically improbable.

I'm not even going to argue about why or why not people should be "entitled", or why or why not they should all pay taxes.

In order for 47% to work, you would have to look past the fact that as of last year, only 45% didn't owe income tax ( http://money.cnn.com/2011/04/14/pf/taxes/who_pays_income_taxes/index.htm ). Even assuming that in the year since that article that the number grew from 45 to 47%, you need to some how deduce that ALL of the people who didn't pay, are Obama supporters. And since I personally know people who don't support Obama, but make low enough wages to pay little to no Income Tax, the 47% stat is defeated.

Lorie Longhany
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Jeff, Romney used arithmetic in his donor speech. I just added my personal story. Emotional only because it was personal but very factual.

Here's some more arithmetic -- From the Brookings Institute
61% of the people paying no Fed Income tax are low wage workers
22% are elderly
17% are students, people with disabilities and the unemployed.

Another analysis breakdown --

A separate TPC analysis categorized people who do not owe federal income tax in 2011 in a different way.* It found that of the filers who don’t owe federal income tax for 2011:
50 percent are in this category because their incomes are so low that they are less than the sum of the standard deduction and personal and dependent exemptions for which the household qualifies. As TPC Senior Fellow Roberton Williams has noted, “the basic structure of the income tax simply exempts subsistence levels of income from tax.”** Some 62 percent of the households who will owe no federal income tax in 2011 have incomes under $20,000.
Another 22 percent do not owe federal income tax because they are elderly people who benefit from tax provisions to aid senior citizens, such as the exemption of Social Security benefits from income tax for beneficiaries who have incomes below $25,000 for single filers and $32,000 for joint filers and the higher standard deduction for the elderly.
Another 15 percent (of the households who don’t owe federal income tax) don’t owe the tax because they are low-income working families with children who qualify for the child tax credit, the child and dependent care tax credit, and/or the earned income tax credit, and the credit(s) eliminate their income tax liability.***
http://www.cbpp.org/cms/index.cfm?fa=view&id=3505

C. M. Barons
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Mark Brudz
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That would be a nice retort if it dealt with what the Governor actually said and the point he was making.

Anyway you cut it I will say again

It was a true stement by Romney

47% will vote Obama no matter what
47% will vote Romney No matter what

and the 6% will decide the election, that was his context, that was the intent of his staement, and that is absolutely the truth

C. M. Barons
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http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/09/romney-secret-video-israeli-...

...More reality-challenging babble from GOP village idiot2.

C. M. Barons
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...A context embellished with about four tons of deranged garnish (BS).

Mark Brudz
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CM, village idiot would in my opinion more likely apply to the Utopic Day Dreams of Jill Stein

C. M. Barons
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Thanks, Mark, but GOP village idiot2 is the sequel to GOP village idiot1: George W. Bush. I'll take dreams over nightmares any day.

Lorie Longhany
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This is the transcript Mark

"47 percent of voters will chose Obama “no matter what” because they are people who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax.”
“My job is not to worry about those people,” Romney says in the video. “I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”

I am very active in Democratic politics. This is not an accurate description of the people I know who support the President. In fact most of the people I know pay a higher percentage of income taxes than Romney.

Mark Brudz
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I am sure that you would CM, but remember, one's dreams are another's nightmare, so it is all relavent.

And 5-6% of the voter's dreams will determine the election any way you cut it

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Mark Brudz
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Laurie, that transcript says nothing different than the entire debate this cycle.

It doesn't change what point he was trying to make,

Mark Brudz
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Somewhat typical response CM, who cares if Romney has his IRA in LEGAL according to the tax code Cayman Island accounts.

My IRA's are in tax sheltered accounts as well, would gladly trade the shelters for a FLAT tax though

Dave Olsen
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Look at it this way: "It is more blessed to give than to receive" So 53% of America has that going for us.

C. M. Barons
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Hypocrisy is not illegal; it's frowned upon.

Mark Brudz
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You had better check your IRA

C. M. Barons
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What IRA? Did you open one for me?

Mark Brudz
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Well that pretty much sums it up then doesn't it, CM.

C. M. Barons
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You'll have to explain that bit of vaguery. I've contributed to two pension plans, SSI and Medicare all my adult life. I have no interest in putting money into some investment bankers kitty, to be whimsically frittered away. I have no control over how my pension is invested, but I will not voluntarily participate in Wall Street hoodwinkery. Occupy!

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Lorie,
The military pay federal income tax on their base pay. They do not pay it on other payments such as for travel or housing. And under most circumstances, do not pay taxes on what is commonly called combat pay.

Mark Brudz
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" I've contributed to two pension plans, SSI and Medicare all my adult life"

Well so have I CM, so has everyone in this country with a job.

Does that mean that I am a Hypocrite because my wife has a 401(k) or that I take 5% of my income and place it into an IRA?

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The hypocrisy charge was leveled at Twit Wobbly. I haven't made any personal charges against you or anyone else on this site. If you CHOOSE to make any of this personal that is your privilege, but don't assert that I led the argument in that direction. YOU are the one who translated this argument into an analysis of MY personal finances. How you handle your personal finances is your business, HOWEVER you are NOT running for president AND challenging the ethics of 47% of America's voters.

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=526924570667528&set=a.22432194759...

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CM. He didn't challenge the ethics of the 47%, he simply stated that about 47% believe that government is responsible for caring for them, there is a huge difference.

And that is precisely the argument in this election, just how much should we look to government for our well being.

Because you bel;ive differently, does not make him a hippocrite, nor does it mean that those that believe as you are somehow unethical.

Mitt Romney has IRA's some held off shore well here is a news flash
IRA Contributions are deductible (subject to conditions). When deducted, contributions are pre-tax, otherwise, they are post-tax. Distributions are taxed as ordinary income (except any non-deducted principal).

There is absolutely nothing Hypocritical about it except when used as means of class envy, which in my opinion is the root not only of all evil, but the root in any governments demise.

You can agree or disagree with me, with Romney with George Washington Carver.... Mitt Romney may or may not be a lot of things, but not a hypocrite, he makes no apology for earning his wealth, and he did earn his wealth, the inhertitance that he received from his father came long after he made it on his own, and 100% of it was donated to Sanford University.

Sure his parents paid for his college, well My parents paid for mine, sure his parents helped him buy his first house, well my parenst helped my wife and I with our first house as well.

You can post links to anto Romneyt campaigns all that you want, you can post to op eds that are anti Romney all that you want. It does not make him any more a Hypocriote as it does Barack Obama or anyone else.

If all you have is class envy, may I suggest that you retool

C. M. Barons
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I'm sorry you don't like Obama. I'm sorry that the GOP selected a dead opossum as its presidential candidate. Look at the bright side: there are at least 28 other options.

Constitution Virgil Goode Jr.
Green Jill Stein
Libertarian Gary Johnson
Reform Andre Nigel Barnett
America's Party Ted Hoefling
American Independent Edward C. Noonan
American Third Position Merlin Miller
Grassroots Jim Carlson
Boston Tea Party dissolved 2012
Citizens Lou Dobbs
Independence
Justice Party Rocky Anderson
Objectivist Tom Stevens
Peace And Freedom Roseanne Barr
Prohibition Party Jack Fellure
Socialism and Liberation Peta Lindsay
Socialist Equality Jerry White
Socialist Party USA Stewart Alexander
Socialist Workers Party James Harris
Federalist Party Joseph Felix Leonaitis
Independence
Independent Christian
Independent Republican
Independent Candidates Randall Terry,
Terry Jones, Joe Schriner, Randy Blythe, Robert
Burke

Mike's Party Michael J. Moloney
Freedom Socialist Stephen Durham
Modern Whig T. J. O’Hara
Priorities Party
AAIUP
Absolute Dictator Party Caesar Buonaparte
After Party
America's Third Party
Bullmoose Progressive Party Randal Trackwell
Caucasian Conscience Movement
Common Sense
Division
Eco-Green

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Is it so difficult for you to debate on merit rather than sarcasm and cute little scoffs at reality CM?

Your last post rest my case.

But in defense of your imagination, you wrote an excellent novel, both my wife and daugther loved it

C. M. Barons
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Thank you for the feedback. It is sincerely appreciated.

Dave Olsen
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Roseann Barr is running for President? That should be an interesting platform

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Howard B. Owens
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Mitt Romney says he misspoke. I think he meant to say that 47 percent will vote for Obama because they believe in taking money from one group of folks and giving it to another group of folks. Now whether you believe that such social engineering is good policy or bad, that's been the progressive platform since Teddy Roosevelt (a Republican) was president. Does anybody deny Obama is a progressive?

Mark, Romney earned his wealth?

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/greed-and-debt-the-true-story-...

If shysterism is earning, then I guess he did.

Six percent will not decide the election. Perhaps three percent. A good percentage of that vote in the middle will pick "none of the above" when it comes to Marack O'Romney. I'll be among them who choose not to waste my vote on either of these guys.

Mark Brudz
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Really Howard, A rolling Stone Article (Fair & Balanced?)

From http://articles.businessinsider.com/2011-12-14/politics/30515127_1_mitt-...

Between the firm's founding in 1983 and Romney's 1999 departure, Bain Capital became one of the top leveraged buyout firms in the country, acquiring more than 115 companies and averaging a spectacular 88% annual returns, according to a 2000 prospectus obtained by the LA Times.

Here are some of Romney's most notable deals:

Staples: Bain Capital's first success was in 1986, when Romney agreed to a $650,000 investment in an office supply store, which eventually turned into an $18 billion company. When Bain sold its stake a few years later, it saw a nearly sevenfold return on its investment.

Accuride: Bain Capital's focus quickly shifted away from VC loans to leveraged buyouts, with the 1986 purchase of Firestone's wheel-making division. The firm renamed the company Accuride, revamped production, and restructured executive pay, according to the Boston Globe. Bain Capital sold the company to a mining conglomerate 18 months later, reaping $120 million from its $5 million investment.

Damon Corp.: Under Romney, one of Bain Capital's more questionable deals was the firm's 1989 purchase of Damon, a medical testing company that ended up pleading guilty to defrauding the government and paying a $119 million fine. Although he sat on the company's board, Romney was never implicated, and Bain tripled its investment returns before selling the company in 1993. Romney personally got $473,000 from the deal, according to the Boston Globe.

Experian: In a rare quick flip, Bain Capital partnered with another private equity firm to buy Experian, a consumer credit reporting company in 1996, selling two months later for a $200 million profit.

DDI Corp.: When Romney touts his private-sector job record, his opponents are quick to point out Bain Capital's 1997 acquisition of electronic circuit board manufacturer DDI Corp. According to Politico, Bain took the company public in 2000, reaping $36 million — but by 2003, DDI had filed for bankruptcy protection and laid off 2,100 workers.

Domino's Pizza: Bain Capital's largest acquisition under Romney's tenure was its $188.8 million buyout of Domino's in 1999. The firm eventually reaped a fivefold return, according to the LA Times.

By most accounts, Romney is largely credited as the brains — and discipline — behind these deals. And the 2012 candidate has clearly profited handsomely — according to recent disclosures, a significant chunk of Romney's portfolio is tied up in Bain investments, and he continues to receive millions from his retirement package.

Read more: http://articles.businessinsider.com/2011-12-14/politics/30515127_1_mitt-...

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Mark, your comment rather supports the accusation of shysterism.

Also, here's a round up of conservative reaction to Romney's statement.

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/09/romney-47-percent-rankles-con...

Mark Brudz
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Additionally, most of the claims in the Rolling Stone Story spawn from Newt Gingrich's campaign film

Here is what Fact Check had to say about that, the Fact Checkers at the Washington times have simular rebuttals

http://www.factcheck.org/2012/01/facts-strained-in-king-of-bain/

Mark Brudz
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No Howard, I do not agree a 78% success rate in any business is phenominal'

And you do realize that Talkingpoints Memo is a Liberal Biased site do you not

UPDATE: I just scanned over 172 titles on Talkingpointsmemo.com NOT ONE questioned either a statement or policy of Obama or anyother Democrat. However, 168 of the 172 titles criticized Romney, Ryan and other GOP candidates for Senate. NO ONE in a serious face can tell me that there is anything fair, trusted or gospel truth from that site.

Tim Miller
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Whether he was referencing the 47% that did not pay income taxes (which included people on SocSec) or the 47% who support President Obama is irrelevant.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-KwHcg0WdoQs/UFemiSYOc3I/AAAAAAAAGwo/rJnDY2XuO7...

If it was the 47% who do not pay income taxes, he was making a derogatory remark about folks who busted their asses their whole adult lives and are now collecting Social Security, and those who are on disability, and those who don't make enough to pay taxed. A pretty piss-poor way to treat people.

If it was the 47% who support the President, he's making some pretty wild and erroneous accusations (also derogatory in nature). With the exception of a few folks on SocSec, EVERY SINGLE OBAMA SUPPORTER I KNOW WORKS. Dependent? Hardly.

Either way, he's either calling a large group of people who have worked their whole lives slackers, or a large group of people who are working slackers. Ironic for a person whose only "work" for the past few years has been sitting on his ass or giving a few overpaid speeches...

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