Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wednesday night rambling

This clip is interesting for two reasons.

First, the part 1:15 in, where Lauer is talking to one of Palin's daughters, and she says that yes, she missed a lot of school, and that "it's really hard". Gotta feel bad for the little ones, even if their mother is a power-hungry narcissist who doesn't realize that her 15 minutes are up.

Second, Bush's awkward silence starting around 1:39 where he jokes about looking forward to the lame duck session.

Bush sounded like a defeated man, not just yesterday, but today as well, with him actually admitting to various mistakes he has made during his presidency, something he was previously loathe to do.

Fox news' Shep Smith definitely has his moments. As does Chris Matthews.

And it looks like Alaskan GOP Senator convicted felon Ted Stevens is in trouble. The latest count, including thousands of absentee ballots, has him down by precisely three votes. Still more votes to count, but Alaska might not have let everyone down after all.

Finally, as the stock markets keep crashing on the heels of more bad economic news, and modifications to the Bailout plan, the fact that anyone even needs to ask why rich Americans voted Democratic this year is pretty depressing.

Here's a newsflash, Daniel Gross, taxes aren't everything. Sure, they are for the perennial tax-whiners. But smart rich people know better. A marginal tax rate of 36% is marginally better than a marginal tax rate of 39%. But what good is that if your stock portfolio has lost 50% of its value? For all the gnashing of teeth over Bush's tax cuts for the rich, the stock markets are lower now than they were eight years ago.

And this isn't just some historical aberration. Over the last few decades, rates of return on the stock market have been consistently higher during Democratic presidencies. If you invested $10,000 dollars in the S&P index in 1929, this is the difference:

(image from here)

Rather than obsessing over marginal differences in marginal tax rates, pundits and journalists need only to look at the above picture to understand why the rich voted for Obama despite his desire to raise their taxes.

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