I have been perusing the Republican presidential candidate's pitches and websites a little and it is a completely bonkers world that they live in. Herman Cain, the current leader in the latest poll that I found, has some really juicy and terrible things on his website talking about his plan for taxation and economic reform.
First off, he proposes a 9/9/9 plan, which will reduce income taxes and business taxes to 9% flat rate and will also introduce a sales tax of 9%. While I agree that shifting the tax burden to sales taxes rather than income taxes has some merits I must question the need to massively shift the tax burden away from businesses. Cain also plans to eliminate taxes completely on capital gains - which of course means that the wealthy might well have income tax rates as low as 1%. Essentially this is an undisguised attempt to shift the burden of paying for government spending almost entirely onto the shoulders of the poor by reducing the taxes of the rich by 50-90% and business by 75%. The hilarious thing is that even though the plan is pitched as a good thing for the average taxpayer it is, for 84% of the bottom half of the country, a tax hike instead.
There is also the obligatory pandering to Christianity, but Herman Cain is not one to sit on the sidelines, but rather he credits the success of the US entirely to its being the country favoured by God.
And to send a message to the rest of the world when Communism was on the rise in the 1950s, Congress added the words “under God” to our pledge of allegiance. They were not just words. It was a collective reaffirmation that we know the ultimate source of our greatness as a nation.
There are plenty of other things that made me sigh when Cain talks about healthcare, education or other such matters but in those arenas I think the waters are more muddy. He is wrong about everything (or at least everything he cared to put on the website) but it is much more difficult to pin down exactly where and how he is wrong.
The thing I wonder is whether or not having someone with such incredibly hardcore pro rich, pro religion policies is a good thing or a bad thing. First off, if these things help him not get elected then it is a good thing. If he does get elected and tries to implement them though... yikes. If you think Occupy Wall Street is a problem now, imagine what will happen when the rich pay 75% less into government coffers and the poor can expect no health care nor welfare to pay for it.
God thinks the USA should rule the world. Also, screw the poor. Vote Cain!
And yet this works.
Hilarious addendum: A Cain promo video showing how cool Cain's chief of staff is by smoking during the video.