Tax system could become less fair to average Georgian

Three years ago, then-House Speaker Glenn Richardson announced a plan to dramatically restructure state and local tax systems by shifting much of the burden from property and income taxes onto sales taxes.

Dubbed “The GREAT Plan” by the never-modest Richardson, the proposal showed no sign of forethought, study or careful consideration. It was a hastily thrown-together effort intended mainly to raise Richardson’s conservative profile, and eventually it fell into the oblivion it deserved.

It was a path that Richardson himself later followed as well.

Since then, however, the need for a rethinking of the state’s tax system has become even more glaring. For example, hundreds of special tax breaks and deals have been written into the code over the years, unfairly exempting some from a tax burden that ought to be shared more broadly.

So this week, Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle and House Speaker David Ralston announced a different and clearly more serious approach to the challenge.

Legislation introduced Tuesday would create an 11-member “Special Council on Tax Reform and Fairness for Georgians.” The council, which would include three economists, would be asked to study the state’s current tax system and submit recommendations for change by January, in time for the next legislative session.

From there, the process gets a little complicated.

The panel’s recommendations would be submitted to a special 12-member committee comprising House and Senate members. That committee would sift through the panel’s recommendations and craft them into a final bill. That legislation would then be submitted to the House and Senate for an up-or-down vote, with no amendments permitted.

That’s an unusual way of doing business at the state Capitol, but it’s hardly unknown. A similar commission was proposed earlier this year in Washington to recommend ways of addressing the federal deficit. (It failed after seven Republicans who co-sponsored the bill in the Senate turned around and voted against it.)

The philosophy in both cases is sound. Revamping an entire tax system is a delicate balancing act. You have to ensure that the new system generates enough revenue to run government, and you have to allocate the pain of taxation across a broad range of special interests, all of which want the burden placed on someone else.

Doing that in a relatively controlled committee setting is hard enough; once you open the proposal to amendment after amendment on the floor, the whole structure would crumble under the pressure.

However, other aspects of the Georgia tax-reform proposal are more troubling.

Early indications are that the panel is being created with a goal in mind: a reduced reliance on state income taxes, capital gains taxes and corporate taxes. Of course, that lost revenue would have to be made up through other sources, most likely a higher sales tax or a sales tax on services.

If that sounds familiar, it should. That was also the approach of Richardson’s ill-fated GREAT plan.

The makeup of the panel also suggests a mission of reducing or eliminating taxes paid by business and the more affluent while shifting that burden onto the sales tax, which hits working-class and middle-class Georgians harder.

In addition to the economists, panel members would include outgoing Gov. Sonny Perdue and former U.S. Sen. Zell Miller, who also served two terms as governor. Both men bring significant knowledge and expertise to the discussion. Ralston and Cagle also would name two members each.

The other two seats would be reserved for the Georgia Chamber of Commerce and a Georgia representative of the National Federation of Independent Business.

Business groups absolutely need a seat at the table in such a discussion. They not only have a lot at stake, they too have expertise to offer. It would be foolhardy to try to revamp a tax system without their input.

However, reserved seats for two business groups — a gesture not extended to any other interest group — does send a rather eloquent message of the panels’ priorities.

Georgia’s current tax system is already business-friendly and regressive, meaning it hits lower-income groups harder. Now, a government panel created to promote “fairness for Georgians” seems likely to compound that inequity.

103 comments Add your comment

I Report (-: You Whine )-: Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 19th, 2010
7:43 am

Did I not tell you? Here they are, just as I predicted, how we gonna pay fer all this, duh?

Talk to the hand, Bookman, it’s going to pull the lever on you and your kind come this November.

We’ll clean up this mess.

Outhouse GoKart

March 19th, 2010
7:48 am

“11-member “Special Council on Tax Reform and Fairness for Georgians.” The council, which would include three economists, would be asked to study the state’s current tax system and submit recommendations for change by January, in time for the next legislative session.”

Kinda like “A special blue ribbon commission made up of Ms Betty Childs and myself and we will get to the bottom deeds perpetrated against the nerds I MEAN Tri-lambs”.

FinnMcCool

March 19th, 2010
7:51 am

Of course they want to shift more burden to the middle and working classes: this is a Republican run “Old Boy Network” state. The fat cats will always keep each other in the clear.

I Report (-: You Whine )-: Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 19th, 2010
7:56 am

It’s not your money to lord over, McFool. If you want to be a fat cat and participate in wealth creation, no one is stopping you but yourself.

You have to do more than fill your diaper, just sayin…

Peadawg

March 19th, 2010
7:57 am

“a tax burden that ought to be shared more broadly.”

AMEN!!!

BTW, I’ll be in church this Sunday praying for this great nation if this health care bill passes. Lord help us all!!!

There You Go

March 19th, 2010
7:57 am

Maxine Asks:

Let me get this straight……we’re trying to pass a health care plan written by a committee whose chairman says he doesn’t understand it, passed by a Congress that hasn’t read it but exempts themselves from it, to be signed by a president that also is exempt from it and hasn’t read it and who smokes, with funding administered by a treasury chief who didn’t pay his taxes, all to be overseen by a surgeon general who is obese, and financed by a country that’s broke.

What the H%LL could possibly go wrong?

Peadawg

March 19th, 2010
7:58 am

“The fat cats will always keep each other in the clear.”

Especially when it comes to budget cuts in the USG. The administrators don’t want to take pay cuts…they would rather put it on the students and lower faculty/staff.

FinnMcCool

March 19th, 2010
8:00 am

Some interesting bits here:
What’s in the final bill: http://www.slate.com/id/2248030/

Ray

March 19th, 2010
8:00 am

The final nail in the educational coffin is near!

No better way to build the GOP base than keepin’ ‘em dumb as the red clay they’ll soon be eating.

jt

March 19th, 2010
8:01 am

Just send the panel via Greyhound to the progressive Utopian state of California to learn how not to do it, then on the way back, stop in Texas(no income tax) to find out how to do it.

No per diem.

Purina's Dawg Chow

March 19th, 2010
8:01 am

Don’t worry! They’re just fees.

Mirror, Mirror

March 19th, 2010
8:03 am

Talk to the hand, Bookman, it’s going to pull the lever on you and your kind come this November.

We’ll clean up this mess.

Gale

March 19th, 2010
8:05 am

I don’t know why you think anything will change in November, Whiner. Georgia seems determined to elect the same mind set every election.

Mick

March 19th, 2010
8:07 am

Since my favorite price to pay is free, its getting harder to find those deals. I can go to denny’s and disney for free on my b-day. I can fish or go to the beach relatively cheap. Someone needs to get the formula right and divide the load equally among all in the state, it is the only fair way to go.

Outhouse

Tramp stamp – I don’t think anyone defined it yesterday but it is the idea that if a female has a tatoo she most likely is “easy”.

Boss Hawg's Dawg

March 19th, 2010
8:11 am

Finally! Peonage shall be ours! Rejoice, brethren.

Paul

March 19th, 2010
8:15 am

As I’m not a resident of Georgia I’ll read the comments. Yes, Texas has no income tax, but with the way the state is growing, we’ll get to the point where other methods are necessary.

Mick- GHGK

My understanding is, the term refers to the rather large tattoos women have on their lower back.

Mick

March 19th, 2010
8:21 am

Paul – I’m anti tatoo on women, so I just include “any”. Skin is a miraculous tissue, I don’t get why anyone would want to ink it up? I’ll just read today also but florida is going through the same upheavals and our legislature has the combined brain power of a gnat…looks bleak.

FinnMcCool

March 19th, 2010
8:21 am

Feds: Brakes weren’t applied on crashed NY Prius
US regulators say data from crashed New York Prius show throttle open, brakes not applied
http://www.charter.net/news/read.php?rip_id=%3CD9EHAAHG0%40news.ap.org%3E&ps=1018&sc_cid=homepage_newsDCC_article1

I was thinking this might be a hoax.

Marine

March 19th, 2010
8:22 am

Paul, Panama City license plate or a Tramp Stamp.

The Days of our Fiefs

March 19th, 2010
8:23 am

Help wanted. Security personnel needed for several county owners. Job requires “elimination” of poachers, hunters, etc… Serious inquiries only. Former military contract experience a plus.

The Days of our Fiefs

March 19th, 2010
8:27 am

Are used services taxable?

stands for decibels

March 19th, 2010
8:27 am

Brakes weren’t applied on crashed NY Prius

Next thing you’ll be telling me Balloon Boy was never in the balloon!

stands for decibels

March 19th, 2010
8:27 am

I guess I should address Jay’s topic, but I get bored typing “like Jay said.”

Peadawg

March 19th, 2010
8:29 am

Finn, you mean to tell me that someone who use a serious problem and try to manipulate the system? Whoda thunk it!

Normal

March 19th, 2010
8:29 am

FinnMcCool

March 19th, 2010
7:51 am

My input, too.

There You Go

March 19th, 2010
8:30 am

WHY is the USA BANKRUPT?

The Democrats claim the war in Iraq is costing us too much? Read this:

We have been hammered with the propaganda that it was the Iraq war and the war on terror that is bankrupting us.

I now find that to be RIDICULOUS.

I have included some URL’s for verification of some of the following facts…

1. $11 Billion to $22 billion is spent on welfare to illegal aliens each year by state governments.
Verify at:http://www.fairus.org/site/PageServer?pagename=iic_immigrationissuecenters7fd8

2. $2.2 Billion dollars a year is spent on food assistance programs such as food stamps, WIC, and free school lunches for illegal aliens.
Verify at:http://www.cis.org/articles/2004/fiscalexec.HTML

3. $2.5 Billion dollars a year is spent on Medicaid for illegal aliens.
Verify at:http://www.cis.org/articles/2004/fiscalexec.HTML

4. $12 Billion dollars a year is spent on primary and secondary school education for children here illegally and they cannot speak a word of English!

5. $17 Billion dollars a year is spent for education for the American-born children of illegal aliens, known as anchor babies.

6. $3 Million Dollars a DAY is spent to incarcerate illegal aliens.

7. 30% percent of all Federal Prison inmates are illegal aliens.

8. $90 Billion Dollars a year is spent on illegal aliens for Welfare & social services by the American taxpayers.

9. $200 Billion dollars a year in suppressed American wages are caused by the illegal aliens.

10. The illegal aliens in the United States have a crime rate that’s two and a half times that of white non-illegal aliens. In particular, their children are going to make a huge additional crime problem in the US .

11. During the year of 2005 there were 4 to 10 MILLION illegal aliens that crossed our Southern Border also, as many as 19,500 illegal aliens from Terrorist Countries. Millions of pounds of drugs, cocaine, meth, heroin and marijuana, crossed into the US from the Southern border.

12. The National policy Institute estimated that the total cost of mass deportation would be between $206 and $230 billion or an average cost of between $41 and $46 billion annually over a five year period.

13. In 2006, illegal aliens sent home $45 BILLION in remittances to their countries of origin.
Verify at:http://www.rense.com/general75/niht.htm

14.The Dark Side of Illegal Immigration: Nearly One million sex crimes Committed by Illegal Immigrants In The United States .
Verify at:http://www.drdsk.com/

The total cost is a whopping $ 338.3 BILLION DOLLARS a year! It is $338,300,000,000.00 which would be enough to stimulate the economy for the citizens of this country.

Are we THAT stupid? YES, for letting those in the U.S.Congress get away with letting this happen year after year!!!!!

stands for decibels

March 19th, 2010
8:33 am

I don’t know why you think anything will change in November, Whiner.

Because otherwise he has nothing to live for. Hope springs eternal. He told every liberal within cyber-earshot that they were going to “hate ‘08.” He was still trying to massage RCP polling info to prove that McCain/BibleSpice were going to pull off an upset victory in late October.

He dances in the end zone every time some state office flips (ignoring that both VA and NJ flipped Rep-to-Dem in Nov. 2001, and somehow Bush’s party survived in 2002.)

but you know all that, right?

FOX Comedy Network

March 19th, 2010
8:35 am

Darn! That Jon Stewart is tearing us up. He is one more funny dude. How does he manage to share the truth with America and make it funny at the same time. We can’t even get the truth part started and the best we do with “funny” is being made the butt of someone’s joke. Maybe we better change our name to FOX News and tell folks that we’re fair and balanced. They’ll buy it.

FinnMcCool

March 19th, 2010
8:39 am

Fox talking about Stewarts 15-minute parody of Beck?

Hehehe

Normal

March 19th, 2010
8:41 am

Tramp Stamp=USDA Approved.

News from the Bowels of the Conservative Movement

March 19th, 2010
8:43 am

stands for decibels

March 19th, 2010
8:33 am

Are you writing another one of those “As the Stomach Churns” episodes? You know how that series moves me.

mike

March 19th, 2010
8:44 am

Bookman whining about Republican policy.

In related news, the sun rose today. Yawn.

Doggone/GA

March 19th, 2010
8:46 am

Mike whining about Jay’s opinion.

In related news, the sun rose today. Yawn

mike

March 19th, 2010
8:47 am

FOX Comedy Network –

Let me guess. You are one of the “intellectual” liberals who recognize Fox’s bias, yet mindlessly lap up the bias of MSNBC, the AJC, Newsweek, et al.

I find that the more that one hammers at only one side of the propaganda aisle, the more of a bleating consumer of propaganda from “my side” one is.

There You Go

March 19th, 2010
8:48 am

Jay, Why the “Your comment is awaiting moderation”? The truth hurt?

Scout

March 19th, 2010
8:49 am

Jay: Is this the best you can do this morning?

Uh, like the Federal system is fair to Georgians or any other American either ?

mike

March 19th, 2010
8:49 am

Doggone –

Yeah, that is super. The difference is that I am not paid to be interesting. Jay is.

That is why Jay’s blog has such narrow appeal and why the posts are always from the same friendless wonders like you who spend every waking moment here. LOL

AmVet

March 19th, 2010
8:49 am

Mike whining about Bookman. Who saw that coming?

The Chamber of Commerce gets a seat a the table regarding how to keep corporations from paying anything.

There was a time in this country when business paid their fair share. No more.

Leeches…

Purina's Dawg Chow

March 19th, 2010
8:49 am

I’ve got a good one! How about we charge a blog post fee! We could even exempt blogs that we deem to be exemptable and charge bigger fees for those that are considered offensive to us. What do you think. That Erick Erickson guy should definitely be exempt. He’s cute. I think he looks a lot like Oxendine. Maybe they’re from the same tribe.

FOX Comedy Network

March 19th, 2010
8:51 am

FOX Comedy Network –

Let me guess. You are one of the “intellectual” liberals who recognize Fox’s bias, yet mindlessly lap up the bias of MSNBC, the AJC, Newsweek, et al.

Now that’s some funny stuff. Mind if we use it. You lookin’ for a job by any chance.

md

March 19th, 2010
8:52 am

“Someone needs to get the formula right and divide the load equally among all in the state, it is the only fair way to go.”

Didn’t you get the memo – the constitution says something about some men are created and counted as a full body while others are created and counted as partial bodies while in theory it briefly mentions something about being equal – but that the word equal has 9,999,999….. different definitions.

Doggone/GA

March 19th, 2010
8:52 am

“hat is why Jay’s blog has such narrow appeal”

It seems to appeal to YOU a LOT. Are you saying you’re narrow? I wouldn’t argue with that.

md

March 19th, 2010
8:54 am

“You are one of the “intellectual” liberals who recognize Fox’s bias, yet mindlessly lap up the bias of MSNBC, the AJC, Newsweek, et al. ”

“Jon Stewart” and “truth” are the key clues.

mike

March 19th, 2010
8:57 am

Doggone/GA –

LOL. As usual, you just bleat out mindless comments without really thinking about what you are saying.

I post something here once every other day or so, usually to remind Jay of what a lame contributor he is to this once great paper. On the other hand, folks like you spend every waking second here because you have no personal life? Don’t believe me? Take a look at how many posts you made here just yesterday. Nothing else to do, lonelyheart?

And yes, Jay’s appeal is quite narrow. Do you not notice that it is the same 20 people here every day? The reason is that Jay’s brand of predictable and tiresome partisanship has a limited appeal.

Doggone/GA

March 19th, 2010
8:59 am

“I post something here once every other day or so, usually to remind Jay of what a lame contributor he is”

Nah, not really. You appear to belong to the “any attention is better than no attention” type. I figure you only post here to get SOME kind of attention.

“Do you not notice that it is the same 20 people here every day?”

Welcome to the club!

Tax that Hospital Bed Too

March 19th, 2010
9:02 am

No! I said we “fee” your pain. Not, we “feel” your pain.

Mirror, Mirror

March 19th, 2010
9:03 am

LOL. As usual, you just bleat out mindless comments without really thinking about what you are saying.

N-GA

March 19th, 2010
9:07 am

There You Go:

Simple Solution – A fine of $1 million for every illegal alien found working at a company.

The jobs will dry up and they will need to go home. BTW, there are several government-supplied mechanisms for employers to verify if someone is in the US legally. If it can be proven that the employer made every effort to determine if the person is here legally, then they would not be subject to the fine. This would include restaurants.

You have to make the penalty painful enough to deter the crime. Just sayin’……….

Normal

March 19th, 2010
9:08 am

Mike,
“And yes, Jay’s appeal is quite narrow. Do you not notice that it is the same 20 people here every day? The reason is that Jay’s brand of predictable and tiresome partisanship has a limited appeal.”

Including you? :)

Mick

March 19th, 2010
9:09 am

md

When it comes to definitions,I believe in the KISS philosohy.

Mallory

March 19th, 2010
9:09 am

Americans paid for Kucinich and BO to handle each others joystick on Air Force One. Any outrage from Bookman?

N-GA

March 19th, 2010
9:11 am

Mallory….The outrage is reserved for your pathetically puerile comment.

stands for decibels

March 19th, 2010
9:13 am

I post something here once every other day or so, usually to remind Jay of how much I wish I still had a job at this paper

Fixed mike’s typo.

Doggone/GA

March 19th, 2010
9:14 am

“The outrage is reserved for your pathetically puerile comment”

puerile AND juvenile

Mallory

March 19th, 2010
9:15 am

Dems are saying they will have to look into expanding the IRS to handle BO’s insurance mandates. 16,000 new agents are up for discussion. They will hunt us down and fine us if we don’t comply. Any outrage from Bookman?

FinnMcCool

March 19th, 2010
9:19 am

N-GA,
You’re going to fine a restaurant $1 million for each illegal? What about all those employed by individuals and families for odd jobs? What are you going to fine them? $100,000

I’m filling out the census today. I’m feeling a bit hispanic today….well…maybe not.

NowReally

March 19th, 2010
9:19 am

To change the tax system from being primarily generated by property and income taxes; to sales tax, will only make middle class people such as myself purchase on a need basis. I see myself conserving my spending habits even more than I have in this economy. If we move to this system, I see myself put in a situation where I would be paying a lot more than I do for income and property taxes. The sales tax is fairly low when I make grocery and clothing purchases; however, with this change I see the sales tax currently paid doubling or maybe triple to produce the level of revenue needed to run this state. And to see this every time I make a purchase, would definitely make me decrease my spending.

Also, If they try to fund education primarily on sales tax revenue, they will continue to need more SPLOST in addition to what we have at this time.

Outhouse GoKart

March 19th, 2010
9:20 am

My Sources tell me the Dems do not have the votes.

Outhouse GoKart

March 19th, 2010
9:20 am

I have tossed my census in the trash can. If the Federal A-holes want my info then a personal visit is in order.

Jay

March 19th, 2010
9:21 am

“There you go” asks:

“Jay, Why the “Your comment is awaiting moderation”? The truth hurt?”

TYG, your comment was freed shortly after you posted it. For reasons I cannot explain or defend, the word “ridiculous” automatically kicks a comment into moderation.

And Mike, the more than 2 million page views this blog received in ‘09 would seem to contradict your claim. Like any blog, we have a stable of regular commenters, but also an awful lot of folks who just come here to visit and read.

jconservative

March 19th, 2010
9:21 am

“We’ll clean up this mess.”

Who is “we”?

US history shows that when someone is elected to a government office they then try to govern. And governing always results in increasing the size of government and cost of government. The size and cost of government has not decreased since we started this experiment in 1789.

Jay

March 19th, 2010
9:21 am

And by the way, Mike, I appreciate your own contribution to those numbers. Y’all come back now, y’hear?

Outhouse GoKart

March 19th, 2010
9:22 am

If I understand correctly the Senate may well have to vote again on this HCare debacle before Barry-O gets his turn. Keep in mind I stated “if I understand correctly” which I could be mistaken.

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 19th, 2010
9:22 am

Look fair is fair, and I already pay far too much in taxes. Over half of Americans pay no real taxes. I worked hard for the money that I did not inhereit and my forefathers worked hard for the money I inherited so I should get to keep it. It has not been easy, why after the War of Northern Agression, the government took away our chattel and greatly increased our cost of doing business. Now Obama wants to take even more from me.

The reality is that the fairest thing would be to increase taxes on low income folks. They would still be able to eat and put a roof over their heads, provided that they gave up the fancy sneakers, designer clothes, i-pones (or whatever they are called) and whiskey or drugs.

My family has a long history with the coloured poor and you would not believe the money they waste on El-Jordan sneakers, i-pones, Sure-John hoodies, and getting high one way or another.

The other thing is that higher taxes on the low income folks would reinforce the need for two parent families which, in turn, would help alleviate the colured underclass that costs society so much. You would not believe the number of 18 to 20 year old girls that you see with two or three suckers (each with a different daddy) under their arms. These folks need to be taxed into reality, rather that left to roam wild under the current system and undermine broader society.

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

March 19th, 2010
9:22 am

Well, I take the view of what’s best for the whole state. Get rid of taxes on tobacco and beer. Sock it to the old geezers that don’t get taxed on their SS and pensions. If the feds can tax those things, we can too. And tax welfare and unemployment money. Those are the things that are rising every year. And turn the tax tables around. Tax people with incomes less than $10,000 at 6%. Tax people with incomes more than $500,000 at 1%. In no time flat we’ll see Trickle Down when the rich people start spending that money to make jobs. Instead of sending it to the state. And people that don’t make much money will work alot harder to get out of the high tax bracket.

That’s the Republican way and the Right way. Have a good day everybody.

Outhouse GoKart

March 19th, 2010
9:22 am

It has dic in it.

FinnMcCool

March 19th, 2010
9:23 am

We need to look at the junk food tax again. That stuff is about as bad for the body as smoking and ddrinking and those are taxed out the wazoo.

About 58% of the price of every bottle of liquor purchased is tax.

Mick

March 19th, 2010
9:25 am

Outhouse
**My Sources tell me the Dems do not have the votes**

Is it number 1 or number 2?

Rightwing Troll

March 19th, 2010
9:25 am

“We’ll clean up this mess.”

I should hope so since ya’ll created it.

DUH!………………..

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 19th, 2010
9:25 am

Mike -

I gotta call a spade a spade and come to Jay’s defense. While it truly feels as if we truly agree on little more than the spelling of his first name, he runs a fair blog. Way better than Tucker’s and certain fairt than the NYT and WaPo liberals. One thing about Jay, he can take as good as he gives.

That said, he is wrong on this topic.

Whacks Eloquent

March 19th, 2010
9:26 am

Finn, a junk food tax would put QT out of business! LOL

I like QT, them’s got good coffee!

Normal

March 19th, 2010
9:27 am

Normal

March 19th, 2010
9:27 am

nope, that’s not it…

FinnMcCool

March 19th, 2010
9:27 am

WyldBill wants to tax the poor because…..it will help them…it will make them better people.

In his eyes these people aren’t good enough. Maybe they don’t go to the same church as Wyld Bill? Maybe they don’t have the exact same work ethic as Wyld Bill?

Nah, they just aren’t good enough to breathe the same air as good ole’ Wyld Bill.

Normal

March 19th, 2010
9:29 am

Finn, play nice… :)

Rightwing Troll

March 19th, 2010
9:30 am

“And yes, Jay’s appeal is quite narrow. Do you not notice that it is the same 20 people here every day? The reason is that Jay’s brand of predictable and tiresome partisanship has a limited appeal.”

Yes and you and about 12 of those sheeple are “conservatives”, why do you (and your kind) spend your days here? To be the Bookman Blog referee and throw flags at those whom you deem partisan? (it has to be noted that the great bulk of your flags are thrown at liburals, you never seem to mind much when the nut sacks spout off half cocked…)

Mallory

March 19th, 2010
9:33 am

puerile AND juvenile.

If that’s your opinion, and it is. Why respond?

Doggone/GA

March 19th, 2010
9:35 am

“Why respond?”

Why not?

Paul

March 19th, 2010
9:36 am

Bloggers ridicule Fox news shows (actually, I think they ridicule the entertainers, but they never specify). A bit behind the times, here. Pres Obama just gave an extended interview to Fox News (a news show). The White House obviously thinks there’s an audience to be reached AND minds to be changed.

Pres Obama does a 15-minute interview, even cited by liberal journalists who put their professional ideals above their political ideals.

“As much credit as I give Obama for taking his healthcare message to Fox News and staying on point, I also praise Baier for being thoroughly prepared and hitting a very difficult tone of being appropriately aggressive without being hectoring or rude. It was a textbook encounter of how the press should engage the executive branch of government. Think of it as the antidote to NBC anchorman Brian Williams’ bow to Obama in his prime-time White House special last year.

” Speaking of transparency, I should acknowledge that I personally hope healthcare reform passes. A night in the ER at a Baltimore City hospital Monday made a believer out of me.

Still as a journalist and media critic, I salute Baier for putting the president to the test and respectfully challenging him on his contradictions and reversals — and the subsequent flaws in the legislation he hopes to see on his desk in a matter of days.”

http://weblogs.baltimoresun.com/entertainment/zontv/2010/03/bret_baier_barack_obama_interv.html

Paul

March 19th, 2010
9:36 am

Meant to post “OFF TOPIC” at the beginning of that.

jewcowboy

March 19th, 2010
9:41 am

One of the problems with the state of GA’s budget is that the recession has hit it hard due to reduced sales receipts as people tighten the belt on spending…how exactly does shifting more a tax burden onto sales taxes help this issue?

During the next economic downturn, wouldn’t the budget problem be exacerbated? I would understand if GA lawmakers held onto a budget surplus during a boom times for use during busts, but it does not seem to do that.

jefferson

March 19th, 2010
9:41 am

Incomes over 250k (what a bitch) will have to have a rate higher than the current 6%. The state needs to quit giving away the kitchen sink to foriegn companies that have plenty of money in tax breaks. In the end, the state will have to make the buck go further.

TaxPayer

March 19th, 2010
9:42 am

“We’ll clean up this mess.”

Yep. And the earth is gonna start rotating in the opposite direction tomorrow too.

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 19th, 2010
9:46 am

FinnMcCool
9:27 am

Do you really think that those people couldn’t use a little more responsibility and structure in their lives?

Let me tell you this, we used to have four or five coloureds employed full time at our country place. We hired one Salvadoran (and, yes, he is legal) and his work ethic along with the fact that he never showed up drunk in the middle of the night wanting to borrow led us to hire more of his kind so that our staff is all (legal) Salvadorans. Good people who believe in G-d, even if they are Catholic.

The ones we no long er hire, the coloured, are mired in a moral morass from which it is unlikely they will ever climb. They need to be treated as responsible adults and not as wards of the state befiore they can ever get self respect and turn their race around. We need to remove what President Bush liked to call the bigotry of low expectations and let these people earn self respect.

Paul

March 19th, 2010
9:48 am

TaxPayer

[[And the earth is gonna start rotating in the opposite direction tomorrow too.]]

That’s gonna make an even bigger mess. Didn’t ya see 2012?

Timeless Mick

March 19th, 2010
9:49 am

Is it a Rolling Stones musical interlude.

Wild Bulls… couldn’t drag me a waaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyyyyy.
Wild… Wild Bulls…

stands for decibels

March 19th, 2010
9:49 am

Jay, just tell me you didn’t laugh.

Headin’ upstairs for a bit.

Mick

March 19th, 2010
9:49 am

**even if they are Catholic.**

What have you got against the catholics? As for soft bigotry of low expectations, it must have been nice to be born on third base.

TaxPayer

March 19th, 2010
9:51 am

Paul,

I think the Dems need to pass a law banning 2012 from all Red states. The last thing the conservatives need is something else to fear. :smile:

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 19th, 2010
9:52 am

Mick
9:49 am

I have nothing against catholics. Just most of ‘em aren’t into the bible. They tend to let the priests do that.

Normal

March 19th, 2010
9:55 am

Wyld,
“the bigotry of low expectations”

They why are they cutting education so badly. To have any kind of good expectation at all, you need a degree.

Besides, any person over forty with no education has no expectation at all. And they need help to live. It’s all “Pro Life”, man. they are, after all, living human beings.

N-GA

March 19th, 2010
10:02 am

Finn – I was just trying to make a point. If people want to solve the problem with illegal immigrants, then the punishment needs to be a deterrent.

Wild Bill – Catholics do have Bible Study classes. They choose the “real” bible instead of the one King James had written.[sarc]. BTW….you seem to have a real problem stereotyping people.

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 19th, 2010
10:02 am

Normal
9:55 am

Let me tell you this, people only need a solid fundamental education in reading and writing. From there they can go to trade school or an apprenticeship and make a good living. There is no child born in America who cannot make a great living if he plays by the rules and learns the basics. You can cut education costs because the teachers unions have screwed it up so badly if you want to return to teaching the basics.

md

March 19th, 2010
10:07 am

” The state needs to quit giving away the kitchen sink to foriegn companies that have plenty of money in tax breaks.”

Send them next door to SC or AL, yea, that’ll show them, take those jobs elsewhere – we don’t need no stinking jobs.

N-GA

March 19th, 2010
10:09 am

Paul,

I’m one of those posters who assails Fox regularly. They air a 24-hour editorial attacking anything they don’t like, specifically liberals and their views. They unapologetically air the comments of individuals who spew lies, misinformation, hatred and a lot of other stuff that most certainly falls within the definition of “propaganda” with the sole intent of influencing people with complete disregard for the truth. Their self-described “fair and balanced” reporting is no more true than the “compassionate conservative” tag the GOP hung around their collective necks when GWB was a candidate.

md

March 19th, 2010
10:11 am

“They why are they cutting education so badly. To have any kind of good expectation at all, you need a degree.”

May be to cut down on the protests. The entitlement group didn’t much concern themselves with the free education already provided, so seems a logical place to cut. Heaven forbid they try to reduce services somewhere else.

md

March 19th, 2010
10:15 am

“Besides, any person over forty with no education has no expectation at all.”

This is a free country with taxes already collected to provide “free” education – care to explain why there are folks over forty with no education?

I believe they call it – choice.

Dunwoody Mike

March 19th, 2010
10:37 am

md,

Where is this state is college free? I seem to see many students going to school full time, and working 2 jobs just to keep their heads above water. Sounds like they could use a free college education.
And before you mention the HOPE scholarship, it is very difficult, almost impossible, to maintain a 3.0 GPA while working 50-60 hours a week.

Chris

March 19th, 2010
11:01 am

Despite rhetoric to the contrary, the Republican Party has one mission and one mission only: Enrich the rich.

How?

1. Eliminate corporate income taxes.
2. Eliminate estate taxes.
3. Eliminate capital gains taxes.
4. Eliminate dividend taxes.
5. Eliminate consumer protections that stand in the way of profits.

If the tax burden has to be shifted to the poor and middle class, then so be it. If roads, trains, education and the rest has to be cut, then so be it. Republicans don’t really care about small government or balanced budgets—rhetoric on those issues are just misdirection. Enriching the rich is the ultimate goal.

Pay attention folks. It always comes back to the five items listed above. Always.

md

March 19th, 2010
11:38 am

“Where is this state is college free? I seem to see many students going to school full time, and working 2 jobs just to keep their heads above water. Sounds like they could use a free college education.
And before you mention the HOPE scholarship, it is very difficult, almost impossible, to maintain a 3.0 GPA while working 50-60 hours a week.”

First, college was never mentioned, and second, “difficult” isn’t the same as impossible.

How bad does one want it.