When Tax Reform Isn’t-What Congress Giveth It Taketh Away-Podcast 676

They call it Tax Reform. A Jobs Bill. That’s what it must be, right? Journalists and commentators are playing the same old game. Argue a proposed piece of legislation on its merits. Time to reset the boundaries in When Tax Reform Isn’t-What Congress Giveth It Taketh Away-Podcast 676.

Freedom Of Choice

While listeners to The Bob Davis Podcasts always have the freedom to choose what they think is right, I want to introduce the concept of marginal improvement. Legislators on both sides of the political spectrum talk big about ‘reform’. Usually though they make what really are marginal changes. This is especially relevant when we’re talking about the tax code.

The Real Football Game Is Congress

Team Red moves the ball back to the Blue thirty yard line. It’s hailed as a great victory. Team Blue moves the ball back to the Red twenty yard line a few years later. These are what both sides call marginal improvements. Meanwhile, as economist Milton Friedman famously suggested, they keep getting elected by making the tax code more complicated.

Budget Neutrality Isn’t A Thing

Enter a legislative concept called Budget Neutrality. The idea every expenditure must be ‘paid for’ with tax increases, or budget cuts. You think Tax Reform means lower taxes. What they’re really doing is taking away tax deductions and loop holes, and increasing our overall tax. The sad part is, it’s not their money, it’s our money. In When Tax Reform Isn’t-What Congress Giveth It Taketh Away-Podcast 676.

What Is Real Reform?

If you want real reform. The end to this kind of corruption? Then the power of the federal government to tax our incomes and our property must be permanently eliminated. Should corporations be taxed at all? Do you have property rights if you pay property taxes? How does government pay for the wonderful things both sides wants it to provide? We talk about it in When Tax Reform Isn’t-What Congress Giveth It Taketh Away-Podcast 676.

Already Socialists

So called conservatives like to argue the merits of capitalism versus socialism. It seems like I’d be on pretty safe ground if I suggested the United States has been collectivist for decades. Our economic system is not so much capitalist as it is a controlled market economy. Our elected Kings and their privy courts control our behavior and our futures with regulation and a tax code so complex, were it to be proposed as a single law in its present form, it would cause a revolution.

(Editor’s Note: While the first actual income tax in the United States was levied during the Civil War, it was later repealed as ‘unconstitutional’. Several attempts were made to establish an income tax through the late 1800’s which were unsuccessful, until the 16th amendment, ratified in 1913.)

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When Tax Reform Isn’t-What Congress Giveth It Taketh Away-Podcast 676

Will 1968 Unrest Shockwaves Echo In 2018-Podcast 670

Every now and then it’s necessary to break it down. Why does a long time political observer and analyst find it more difficult to talk about politics these days? In Will 1968 Unrest Shockwaves Echo In 2018-Podcast 670.

Rhetorical Partisans

Some say the US hasn’t been this politically divided since 1968. At least in 1968 we were fighting about specific issues. It seems to me we’re fighting over a person in the present time frame.

Demanding Loyalty

Attack Trump. Defend Trump. At any cost. Ideas and principles aren’t important. Commentators are running for office, under the employ of some partisan organization, or supporting a person or point of view. Will 1968 Unrest Shockwaves Echo In 2018-Podcast 670.

Garbage In Garbage Out

Social media, the Internet and so called news sites spew a constant stream of invective, misinformation and outright lies. They are so busy predicting the future they put Tarot Card Readers and Astrologists to shame.

Read It and Weep

Denying our freedom to choose what we think about an issue based on facts, in the quest to demand loyalty is the height of folly. In Will 1968 Unrest Shockwaves Echo In 2018-Podcast 670. We end up shouting at each other; partisan mobs, not an informed electorate.

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Will 1968 Unrest Shockwaves Echo In 2018-Podcast 670

 

Trump’s Trojan Horse Democrat Embrace Confuses GOP-Podcast 662

A republican president who campaigned against profligate spending has made a deal with democrats in order to spend more. President Trump wants billions for disaster relief in the wake of two hurricanes. In Trump’s Trojan Horse Democrat Embrace Confuses GOP-Podcast 662.

Drowning In The Swamp

The Man who was going to drain the swamp has joined the swamp rats. Conventional rank and file republicans are at a loss to explain. Trump’s a political genius who knows how to work it, is one explanation. Trump’s a Trojan Horse. A closet democrat. He tricked us from the beginning, is another explanation.

What is a Republican?

Truth is Republicans do not know what they are about. What are republicans for? What are they against? The so called conservative movement lost its way a long time ago. Trump is a symptom rather than a transformational leader. In Trump’s Trojan Horse Democrat Embrace Confuses GOP-Podcast 662.

Red Tie Socialism

The President’s budget calls for spending increases. The US is sending more troops to Afghanistan. Elements of the Tax Reform bill actually cap mortgage tex deductions, eliminate corporate tax deductions, seek to tax 401K and other tax deferred savings accounts. It all adds up to tax increases, not tax cuts. Moreover a republican president and congress that campaigned on repealing The Affordable Care Act, did not repeal it.

Permanent Slumber

When will republicans wake up to the fact that the Grand Old Party, the Party of Reagan, is just as interested in taxing and spending as their nemesis, the democratic party? Where is the great conservative movement we keep hearing about? Where are the people to do the hard political work of building a movement? They don’t exist. They deserve a wolf in sheep’s clothing and now they have it. In Trump’s Trojan Horse Democrat Embrace Confuses GOP-Podcast 662. (Editor’s Note: In listening to this podcast I just noticed I refer to the HBO Hit Series ‘WestWorld‘ as ‘West-WOOD’, which of course is the same of a radio network. Old habits die hard.)

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Trump’s Trojan Horse Democrat Embrace Confuses GOP-Podcast 662

 

Minnesota 2nd District Congressman Jason Lewis-Podcast 647

Minnesota 2nd District Congressman Jason Lewis joins Bob Davis during the Pan-O-Prog (Panorama Of Progress) parade in Lakeville Minnesota.

High Stakes

Coming back from the recess, republican majorities in the House and Senate have a lot on their plate. Stakes are high. The Senate has to take up the question of ObamaCare. The House prepares to move onto Tax Reform and a big bombshell when it comes to the budget. For the first time in a long time the house will tackle so called mandatory spending.

No Town Hall Meetings So Far

There’s pressure on Freshman Congressman Lewis because he’s been meeting with constituents and detectors one on one rather than hold so called Town Hall meetings. Lewis addresses this criticism during Minnesota 2nd District Congressman Jason Lewis-Podcast 647. Still, Lewis points to legislative progress in key areas of this podcast and says he still supports the president’s agenda, with qualifications.

Not A Debate

Subscribers sometimes wonder why I do not debate sitting legislators and executives when I interview them. Every now and then our conversations get heated, but I don’t feel it is the role of the podcaster or interviewer to ‘debate’. We ask the questions, you draw your own conclusions.

Fasten Your Seat Belts For This Parade

Minnesota 2nd District Congressman Jason Lewis-Podcast 647 is a slice of life, interviewing the congressman on a gorgeous summer evening in Mobile Podcast Command as we roll through the parade. We talk about his concerns and challenges as a first term congressman. Two talk radio guys can cover a lot of ground, so fasten your seat belts for this parade.

Devil’s In The Details

New Congressmen are inundated with detail when it comes to legislation pending, and bills they’ve voted on. Especially interesting and relevant to me is the higher level of detail in Congressman Lewis’ answers versus Jason Lewis the candidate.

2018 Depends On This Congress Acting

One point the congressman makes is very important. He feels strongly for republicans, of which he is one, that this congress has to act. Lewis is looking to actions candidates in the 2018 cycle can point to as essential to a successful ‘re-elect’. We’ll see. Thanks again to the congressman and the people of Lakeville, Minnesota

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Minnesota 2nd District Congressman Jason Lewis-Podcast 647

 

Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645

Are you a political junkie? Wake up in the middle of the night to check headlines? Scan social media in the bathroom? Watch the 24 hour cable news channels? Listen to talk radio on the weekend? Inbox full of political emails? We’ll talk about it in Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645.

Relevance

TV Stars and channels just want to keep their brands and their personalities foremost in your mind. Same with politicians. This is what people in the media call ‘Being Relevant’.

Inside Baseball

The problem is, the twenty four hour political chatter is less relevant every day. Those addicted to what we call politics these days are driving a conversation about tweets, traded insults, and stunts by people who seem more and more unhinged as each minute passes. In Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645.

Lies Conceal Truth

Politics and those who cover it are talking about each other more than they actually report on the news. The result? The actual political community continues to do whatever it wants, whenever it wants.

Mika Joe and Donald

Even though we have all kinds of ‘news’ coverage, it seems like the function of our government is a mystery to most people. Relating new things to the audience becomes more and more difficult in a sea of nonsense. Television presenters who poke at public figures getting a taste of their own medicine is news? Featured in Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645.

Meanwhile We’re Bankrupt

Puerto Rico is bankrupt. Illinois, California and New York are next. Debt is at record levels. Both political parties promise more and more. Someone, somewhere, someday will have to pay for it.

People vote for personalities. When their ‘guy’ takes office, it is expected he or she will do what ‘the voters’ want. That is not what happens. Why? Political Junkies these days know it all. They can tell you why Trump is a sociopath or why Loretta Lynch should be in federal prison but they can’t tell you what a republican stands for or what a democrat is. Maybe it’s time to watch less and do more.

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Death Of The Political Junkie Rest in Peace-Podcast 645


 

Market Goes Down Blame The Media-Podcast 631

Sudden scandal engulfs Washington. A one day market drop is blamed on media ‘persecution’ of the president. Is this possible? Can the media cause a drop in the markets? In Market Goes Down Blame The Media-Podcast 631.

Russia Was A Dead Issue. Then Trump fired Comey

Not too long ago we were talking about ACA repeal, Tax Reform and Foreign Policy. The only people talking about Russians and Trump were the former Democratic Presidential Candidate and the new chair of the Democratic National Committee. Then, Trump fired the FBI director. That put Russia and Putin back on the front burner.

Trump’s Twitter Feed and Political Mistakes

Now, we’re talking about the latest White House debacle. Not congressional progress on key economic issues. Seemingly, without warning, the market is down! It has to be the media’s fault! Right? We’ll talk about it in Market Goes Down Blame The Media-Podcast 631.

Why Invest?

Investors put their money in markets in the hopes of taking advantage of future growth. With the election of a business man as president, some investors were willing to bet on the future. Health Insurance and Tax Reform. A stronger US Foreign Policy. Less regulation. Progress on the kinds of economic legislation that seeds growth. Or at least that’s the story.

Things Aren’t Getting Better

Truth is, the US economy has been holding in place for nearly ten years. While the markets have been fueled by central banks buying securities and low interest rates, main street has been struggling. The business man president who was supposed to fix main street has done nothing but make speeches, sign executive orders and complain about the media coverage he’s getting. Meanwhile, 1st quarter US Growth was a mind-blowing .7 percent.

The US President Is Not A King

Fact is, the US Presidency is not a dictatorship. US presidents are answerable to congress, the courts and the law, not to mention state and local governments. The presidency itself is mainly a political office. To be effective and memorable, a president’s agenda has to be backed up with legislation. That means the president has to work with congress to get it done.

Rhetoric Doesn’t Work

President Trump has a lot of ideas. He talks about them all the time. Talk is cheap. There’s no action on Tax Reform, ACA Repeal, the Budget, Regulation Reform and trade. Why? Not because of the media. We have a president who likes to talk. He doesn’t like to lead congress to take action. In Market Goes Down Blame The Media-Podcast 631.

Republicans Don’t Want To Talk About Politics Anymore

In January most republicans were on top of all the latest developments in Washington and their new president. They were especially prickly about criticism of Trump. Suddenly they have other things to do. Don’t want to talk about politics. Given the obvious missteps by the president it’s easy to forgive the desire to blame the media for all that is wrong. This time though, the blame lies directly at the president’s door.

Money Talks…Bullshit Walks

Traders want action. Not talk. Investors don’t make decisions on today’s news stories or rhetoric from the president. They’re looking out into the future and investing in future growth. The top political leader in the United States is President Trump. He sits astride a republican White House, Senate and House. Yet, he hasn’t been able to get anything done. Maybe that’s why the markets are down.

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Market Goes Down Blame The Media-Podcast 631

 

 

Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625

We hear a lot of words used to describe various political factions in the US. Most will say the US economic system is capitalist but is this just an illusion? Are we socialist? Have we been socialist for a long time? It seems to me, we have. In Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625.

Socialism Is Everywhere

Just because a country’s economic system is socialist, does not mean it’s a tyranny. Denmark and Canada aren’t dictatorships. Singapore is a Socialist Market Economy. Places where ‘the people’ own or control the means of production. Most socialist countries these days enjoy democratic political systems.

Government and Non Profits Dominate State Economies

Americans think of themselves as capitalists. The thing is, the top three employers in my state are public institutions. Americans depend on social security, medicare, or medicaid ‘entitlements’. Home buyers get tax subsidies. We enjoy many tax deferred investment options. Farmers get subsidies. Public workers get pensions. All kinds of grants for education exist. Then there are the business subsidies and government contracts. Some popular business personalities receive billions in subsidies from the government. We’ll talk about it in Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625.

Both Parties Support Socialism

Democrats complain about light rail projects running through their backyards, but support government programs because ‘It’s the right thing to do’. Republicans complain about big government unless it’s the military, support for their businesses, home mortgage tax credit, social security and 401K programs.

The Right Thing To Do

It’s true that many of these programs date back to the depression in the 1930’s. Also true that creation of these programs came with the best intentions. Whether we like it or not, government is deeply involved in our lives. Of course, what the government giveth, the government takeaway. We’ll talk about it in Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625.

Classic Liberalism Is Forgotten

Republicans and Democrats argue the same side of the coin. Both are collectivists. Neither adhere to Classic Liberalism, a philosophy of limited government with the sole purpose of securing a maximum amount of individual liberty, property rights and free markets. While no political scientist would argue the US is Socialist maybe we should consider the possibility we are and have been for some time.

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Has United States Been Socialist For A Long Time? Podcast 625

 

 

 

 

 

 

Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal

In Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal, everything comes to an end. True in life. True in politics. Voters sent Republicans and Donald Trump to Washington in 2016. One of if not the most important issues was repealing Obama Care. On Friday, March 24th 2016 the president and the republican party made a colossal mistake and broke a major campaign promise to voters.

A Waterloo. A Donnybrook

An ill-conceived ‘repeal and replace’ bill never made it to the floor of the House for a vote. First the President blamed this donnybrook on the republican Freedom Caucus. Ultimately Trump blamed democrats. Blame anyone or anything. Never yourself. Now the president says he will court democrats. My reaction in Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

They’re not listening

The republican rank and file suddenly wonders what happened. Fed a steady stream of fairy tales from the right wing media they thought President Trump had one of the most effective and productive first 100 days in history. What happened? A new president who claimed the government should be run like a business was taught a very important lesson. The United States Federal government is most decidedly not a business. Find out why in Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

Rich Moderate Businessmen Rule

Members of Congress and the Senate have their own ideas about things. Members of Congress and the Senate do not work for the President. The president does not tell members what to do. Rather than lobby effectively, president bluster spent the days leading up to the vote blowing the horn of a semi tractor and bellowing to the press he was a team player. Except when he isn’t.

Is The GOP dying?

This podcaster made three predictions before the election. First, that New York Developer Donald Trump could win the presidency. Second, that an Obama Care repeal would not pass. Third, Trump would destroy the republican party. Two of those predictions have now come true. The third depends on what republican voters do now.

They’re Not Listening

Why don’t they do what we tell them, they cry. The fact is republican congressmen and senators cannot rely on any kind of support structure from the rank and file or grassroots republican rank and file. They don’t do what ‘you’ tell them to do because ‘you’ don’t do anything. A party founded on principle today has no principle and no rudder. What controls the republican party? Rich businessmen who support moderate religious republicans.

Suddenly Trump’s a Democrat?

Whether you’re talking about the US Congress or the ‘republican’ Minnesota legislature, you vote one way, and you get something completely different. Now you have a ‘republican-populist’ president ready to make common cause with the progressive democratic party because he’s miffed at the Freedom Caucus? Principle. There’s that nasty little word again. Let’s talk about it in Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

It’s A New Day When YOU Say

Find out what you need to do to actually make these politicians do what you want. It’s not pretty. It’s not fun saying it. The failure to repeal the ACA is a political mistake of titanic proportions. It will go down in history along side ‘Read My Lips’ and the Isolationist republicans before World War II. All things must pass. Maybe its time for a new day to dawn.

Time to look to ourselves rather than personalities. In Podcast 614-Trump and Republican Colossal Fail On ACA Repeal.

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Podcast 584-Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show-58

Podcast 584-Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show-58. With the Electoral Vote, Donald J. Trump is the official President Elect of the United States. He’ll be sworn in as the 45th President on Friday, January 20th, 2017. As terrible coverage of the election, post election and the events leading up to the inauguration continues, time to shift the conversation toward the challenges ahead. Podcast 584-Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show-58 my coverage of these challenges.

Last summer I predicted the final outcome of the 2016 election would center on the Great Lakes region of the United States. Ohio, Pennsyvania, Wisconsin, Michigan. The former industrial heartland has been plagued by bad economic and policy initiatives, excessive taxation, corruption and incompetent local governments. It’s not surprising people in these regions would have reached a point where they have had enough.

The new narrative is Donald Trump heralds a new kind of politics in America. Depending on the source, either a darker, jingoistic throwback to the 1950’s, a new kind of Populist-Conservative politics, or a new Centrism. Every politician wants to be thought of as a rail splitter, born in a log cabin. Both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump come from upper middle class backgrounds. Park Ridge, Illinois and the Jamaica neighborhood of Queens, in New York City are hardly breeding grounds for American Populists.

While the tone of the executive branch might change under Trump the fact is moderate, establishment Republicans and moderate Democrats are still in control of the United States Government. How do we expect this group of out-of-touch politicians to address the challenges we face?

Since 2008 the US has had stimulus, banking legislation, the adoption of The Affordable Health Care Act and a change in Foreign Policy. The result is nominal economic growth, with 63 percent of the eligible workforce sidelined. A foreign policy that was supposed to herald a new era of peace and cooperation, didn’t. Despite major changes in technology, trade and comparative advantage the new story line is Manufacturing’s Greatest Days lie ahead. Is this true? Another initiative of the new administration is to force spending of a trillion dollars on ‘infrastructure’. Will this work? Is this a conservative economic policy approach? With only 8 percent of the work force is employed in manufacturing and construction and most of the rest of us are employed in value added services, one wonders.

Whatever the new president wants to do, it will be processed through the US Congress, State Legislatures and the Courts. With plenty of Democrats in congress and state legislatures ready to put up a good fight, we’ll see how much the GOP and Trump can get done. We’ll also see if the policy they end up with will work to address major challenges of the future.

Massive changes are taking place in our society and the world as the Fourth Industrial Revolution takes hold. While it’s good for Trump supporters and Republicans to celebrate, and for Democrats to prepare their opposition, the question is whether any of the leaders in Washington really understand what is needed for the people of the United States to grow our economy, move forward and prevail in the new world. Sponsored by Brush Studio and X Government Cars.

Podcast 441

Shopping, Trump, Lies & Liquor. Welcome back from the big Thanksgiving weekend. The weeks starts with the National Retail Federation, AKA The Propaganda Ministry for the Big Box Retailers. If they’re not making up stories about how many people will shop the day after Thanksgiving, they’re blaming lackluster retail numbers on … wait for it … The Internet and specifically Amazon.com. This is the latest nonsense cooked up to convince lawmakers ‘something has to be done’, and that something is regulation of the Internet, so people will continue to shop at obsolete brick and mortar retailers located inside something called ‘The Mall’. Do we have data that shows the Internet is killing the Mall? Not really. Meanwhile ‘Black Friday’ is more and more an example of all that is wrong in America, and provides a great ‘look at the fat Americans fighting over flat screen TV’s’ story often seen in the foreign media. Maybe people aren’t shopping because they don’t believe the fairy tail about our growing economy, or because the new job only pays half what the old job pays, or because there’s a double digit health insurance premium. Yeah, right. We’re going to ‘spend the savings on two dollar gasoline’ at the mall. You know, like a tax cut. Meanwhile, Political Information Lag produced a lot of surprises at the Thanksgiving table as relatives discovered each other were rooting for Trump, or Bernie Sanders. Both candidates are outside the ‘establishment’ Republican and Democrat story line. Everyone HATES Washington and they HATE mainstream media charlatans who lie to them, while they work for candidates like Hillary Clinton. Once real people actually start voting, we’ll see whether anti-establishmentarianism is a ‘thing’, or not. Jeb! shouldn’t hold his breath tho. Meanwhile the City of Edina’s liquor store apparently can’t complete with ‘cut throat’ discount liquor stores (that actually have a responsibility to their stock holders to make money; how quaint.) Thus, the Mayor of Edina wants a liquor store tax, to make up the loss. “It’s a good business, and we’re going to stay in it”. Why are municipalities in the business of selling liquor? Bottom line, if government can’t even make money selling liquor apparently its incompetence knows no bounds. Sponsored by Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul and X Government Trucks.