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Opening Arguments

Give us a break

Almost all political ads are misleading, so we tend to discount them over the long haul. But some are more irritating than others to those of a different political pesuasion, and this one is starting to bug the hell out of me. It's the one featuring Barney Smith, that "ordinary American" from Grant County who wowed the Democratic convention with his "Smith Barney" line. In it, he repeats the tired old talking point now being used by Democrats from Barack Obama to Mike Montageno: We have to stop giving tax breaks to those companies that move American jobs overseas and start giving them to companies that keep jobs here. Let's have a little reality check:

1. If this crowd ever gives a tax break to any business, the political world will have imploded, and we can all just go find our caves in Montana.

2. The "tax breaks" referred to are a provision of the IRS code that lets an American company defer corporate taxes on profits made overseas as long as they stay overseas. It has been around, believe it or not, since before the Bush administration, and It doesn't have a lot to do with why companies move overseas.

3. The real problem is that the United States has one of the highest corporate tax rates in the world, which gives companies a big incentive to find loopholes, such as, see. No. 2.

4. The Marion RCA plant Barney was displaced from was owned by a French conglomerate, so what the hell are you all talking about?

5. That plant made cathode ray tube TVs. You think we're going to start demanding those again anytime soon? Barack have a big plan for that?

Thank you for your indulgence. You may now go back to demonizing Joe the plumber so you can pretend Obama didn't say a thing about "spreading the wealth."


Mon, 10/20/2008 - 9:09am

Next thing you know, that &(*% socialist is going to start nationalizing the banks.

Leo Morris
Mon, 10/20/2008 - 9:40am

Many economists believe that the Great Depression was deepened and lengthened by tariffs and new taxes, both imposed under Hoover before the evil Roosevelt even took office. Might be a lesson there.