They keep coming back, like the villains of a good zombie movie, chanting "more taxes, more taxes." Long ago, Congress passed the alternative minimum tax, or AMT—a simple flat rate to ensure that in an insanely complex tax code, no one escapes paying something. Now we need an alternative maximum tax as a simple, rough-and-ready way to limit the tax zombies´ economic damage. Call it the AMaxT. With Monday´s deadline for filing tax returns looming, let´s start a national conversation: How much is the most anyone should have to pay?
As he was ascending to the pinnacle of power in the Senate Republican conference almost exactly seven years ago, Mitch McConnell planted the seeds of a feud that could conceivably end his career this May. Democrats, capitalizing on the public’s weariness with the Iraq War and outrage at the GOP’s Abramoff-era corruption, had taken control of both houses of Congress. And McConnell had been unanimously elected minority leader. As they are today, Republicans were searching for a way to reconnect with the public. McConnell, for example, canceled an annual lobbyist-funded retreat at the tony Greenbrier resort in West Virginia in favor of
Pope Francis issued his first apostolic exhortation this week, and it has created quite a firestorm. A Google news search on ´Pope´ following the release of exhortation turned up all kinds of stories proclaiming that Pope Francis says Capitalism is ´evil´ from major news sources raning from the Chicago Tribune to ABC News to the Washington Post. Yahoo News ran AP writer Nicole Winfield´s article about the exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, (The Joy of the Gospel), with a headline that initially said something like ´Pope Blasts Capitalism, says rich should share the wealth.´ After 12 hours the headline changed to "Pope issues
Paul Ryan is ready to move beyond last year’s failed presidential campaign and the budget committee chairmanship that has defined him to embark on an ambitious new project: Steering Republicans away from the angry, nativist inclinations of the tea party movement and toward the more inclusive vision of his mentor, the late Jack Kemp. Since February, Ryan (R-Wis.) has been quietly visiting inner-city neighborhoods with another old Kemp ally, Bob Woodson, the 76-year-old civil rights activist and anti-poverty crusader, to talk to ex-convicts and recovering addicts about the means of their salvation. Ryan’s staff, meanwhile, has been trolling center-right think
In the recent government shutdown fight I found myself in polite (on my part at least!) disagreement with the elements of the right inclined to denounce the “Republican establishment.” No need to rehash all that again. But, I will say that in the wake of the Cuccinelli defeat, I think the critics of the establishment have the better side of the argument. If the folks running the party want the tea partiers to support their preferred candidates — when they’re the nominee, at least — it should work the other way around as well. It now appears that Cuccinelli, a
A campaign strategist for Republican Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli said that the national GOP abandoned the campaign in its final days. At the end of the race, Cuccinelli was closing in on Democrat Terry McAuliffe, who eked out a two-point victory on Tuesday despite exit polls that showed McAuliffe was up by seven points. According to the Washington Post, Chris La Civita said that financial support from national Republican sources dried up on October 1. “There are a lot of questions people are going to be asking and that is, was leaving Cuccinelli alone in the first week of October, a smart
Boyd Marcus, the chief of staff for Cantor until 2003—who later teamed with another GOP operative Ray Allen to found the firm Marcus Allen, which Cantor employed until earlier this year—joined the McAuliffe campaign after Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling, with whom Marcus campaigned, did not win the GOP nominee in Virginia. “I was looking at the candidates, and I saw Terry McAuliffe as the guy who will work with everybody to get things done,” Marcus told the Associated Press in August when he joined McAuliffe’s campaign. Cantor employed Marcus Allen until the day before Marcus left the firm to work
Leave it to Mark Levin to say exactly what many conservatives have believed but not said. The RINO wing of the GOP — and Karl Rove specifically — do not want a Ken Cuccinnelli victory in Virginia. In this corner we have believed this for some time. In its own way this reminds of the 1980 presidential race. The RINO in question than was one of Ronald Reagan’s GOP primary opponents — Illinois Congressman John Anderson. Anderson lost resoundingly to Reagan in the primaries, but as usual picked up a core of fans in the liberal media.
A veteran Washington adviser who has worked for four Presidents on both sides of the political aisle said that the stunning Government Accountability Report report that found President Barack Obama has not had a one-on-one meeting with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius since the passage of Obamacare over three years ago is an indictment of the entire White House operation and shows that the Obama administration has bordered on "malfeasance." "I have no doubt the White House is right, that Secretary Sebelius was in several group meetings with the president about health care," Gergen caveated, "but the whole
President Barack Obama’s Facebook page on Saturday posted a message honoring the dead from Pearl Harbor—accompanied by a picture of Obama descending the stairs next to the Pearl Harbor Memorial. The picture barely fits the name of the Arizona Memorial so it can frame Obama in the foreground. The post´s statement reads: Today, with solemn pride and reverence, let us remember those who fought and died at Pearl Harbor, acknowledge everyone who carried their legacy forward, and reaffirm our commitment to upholding the ideals for which they served. President Obama The Obama Administration´s current shipbuilding plan shrinks the size of
Just how much do many Hollywood liberals hate conservatives? In an interview with Playboy, Ben Affleck said, "When I watch a guy [on film] I know is a big Republican, part of me thinks, I probably wouldn’t like this person if I met him": PLAYBOY: You developed a political profile campaigning for presidential candidates Al Gore, John Kerry and Barack Obama. How did that come about? AFFLECK: I grew up in a house with a mother who was a teacher and a Freedom Rider—very left-wing Democrats living in a heterogeneous working-class neighborhood. I picked up a lot of those values there, and I
On his way to the podium at the memorial ceremony for former South African president Nelson Mandela, President Obama walked down the line of dignitaries, greeting other leaders there to pay their respects. Among the hands shaken: that of Cuban leader Raul Castro. Obama neither made a special effort to shake Castro’s hand nor to avoid him. A snub might have been awkward: In his speech, Obama praised Mandela’s “greatest gift” as “his recognition that we are all bound together in ways that can be invisible to the eye; that there is a oneness to humanity; that we achieve ourselves by
MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry opened her program over the weekend with a commentary about the Affordable Care Act’s colloquial moniker: “Obamacare.” She said that the word was originally created as a “derogatory term,” designed by white men as a way to delegitimize President Barack Obama and his achievement. However, she said that the term will soon be synonymous with all of Obama’s accomplishments and she urged her audience to use the term with pride. “I want to talk today about a controversial word. It’s a word that has been with us for years, and like it or not, it’s indelibly
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made a last minute decision not to participate in a memorial service for the late South African President Nelson Mandela, despite having notified the South African government that he would attend the event. The decision was made in light of the high transportation costs resulting from the short notice of the trip and the security required for the prime minister in Johannesburg. The Prime Minister’s Office found that the trip would have cost roughly 7 million shekels ($2.4 million) – 2.8 million shekels for chartering a private El Al plane and a further 3.2 million shekels for
President Obama, former president George W. Bush and their wives departed Washington Monday morning on Air Force One on their way to a memorial service in South Africa for Nelson Mandela. The president and first lady Michelle Obama are being accompanied by Mr. Bush, former first lady Laura Bush and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on the flight to Johannesburg. A four-hour memorial service will be held on Tuesday for South Africa’s first black president. Mr. Mandela, the anti-apartheid revolutionary, died on Thursday at age 95. Former President Bill Clinton and daughter Chelsea are traveling separately to South Africa. Former President