Pay more taxes

As much as a political junkie as I am, even I get plenty sick of all the political ads.  And with competitive Presidential, Senate, and Gubernatorial races we're seeing in NC this year, believe me, I'm seeing plenty of ads.  The one thing that is really bothering me is the endless Republican fear-mongering in virtually all their ads regardless of the race– The Democrats are going to raise your taxes!  The simple fact is that in any honest, objective sense, Americans are not paying enough taxes.  Taxes are the primary source of the government's income and our government is spending far more every year than taxes and other sources are bringing in.  We are living well above our means as a nation by basically borrowing huge amounts of money from other nations– mostly China.  Of course, we could cut our expenditures, but let's be honest, are we really going to see serious cuts.  Of course not.  Anybody who argues we just need to cut government waste to solve our problems is either a fool or a liar.  You cannot have government (or any large entity) without waste.  Can it be more efficient, sure.  Would that make more than a small dent in our account deficits, of course not.  So, until Republicans tell me just what all their politically feasible spending cuts are going to be, I'd appreciate it if they would stop all this “Lions, Tigers, and taxes, oh my!” un-seriousness.   

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Put a fork in McCain?

Meant to post this earlier this week, but, better late than never.  Anyway, Political Scientist Bryan Schaffner has a nice analysis over at Pollster.com suggesting that barring some truly unusual developments, it is pretty safe to say that McCain is done for based on current polls.  Basically, as we know, Obama's been polling great, and by October, these numbers typically don't move alot.  Anyway, here's Schaffner:

This is an obvious point, but If McCain is going to get back in this
race, he can do so in one of two ways: (1) he can win over undecideds
or (2) he can change the minds of those who are currently planning on
voting for Obama.

Let's look at the first point. I created the chart below using the
super-cool new flash tool that Pollster.com rolled out last week. This
chart shows the Pollster.com trend for undecided respondents. At the
end of August, the undecided trend was around 10%. By October 1st, that
number dropped to just above 5%.

Of course, it is highly unlikely that all of the undecideds will go for
McCain, so what about the second option–changing the minds of Obama
voters? It turns out that in recent elections, it has been fairly
difficult to change peoples' minds in October…

What is also striking is that even people who aren't firmly committed
to a candidate appear to end up voting for that candidate in November…

Despite the fact that McCain is only down by 5-7% nationally, time is
running out and a comeback seems like a tall order. In the new era of
partisan polarization, major October shifts in the presidential polls
are unlikely. There are few undecided voters left to persuade at this
point and in recent elections we've seen that few voters change their
minds once they have settled on a candidate.

The full post has lots of nice charts and graphs to illustrate the point.  Anyway, given this reality, it is not surprising that the McCain campaign is flailing desperately and going with the sleaze approach.

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