The American Dilemma and How We Can Fix It

Posts tagged ‘Romney’

ON CULTS

When all else fails, my good liberal friends seem to have an unending arsenal of epithets and insults they want to thrust into what should be a serious debate about who has the capability of becoming the next President of the United States and leading us out of the morass we currently are experiencing.  The most recent arrow from the quiver is the word, “cult” in reference to Presidential nominee Romney.

When we use “cult” in common parlance, we generally are employing it in a pejorative way to a member of a particular religious group or the group itself.  This is actually one definition of the term as it is defined in “Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary – 2nd Edition.”  However, this is only the sixth definition of the term to be found.

One of my good friends recently went on about the “Cult of Mormonism.”  So I thought I would take a moment to put this in perspective.  Before embarking on this, I want to say that I do not know the entire theology of the LDS and I am not serving as an apologist for that religious body.  There is no need for me to do so as we do have the First Amendment to the Constitution which more than adequately addresses the issue.  (I’ve always found it interesting that my liberal friends hold the Constitution in great veneration – but only when it seems to speak positively to their objectives).

In Judaeo-Christian history, the ancient Egyptians viewed Moses and his band of Hebrews as a cult and did all they could to erase them from the face of the Earth.  Then, along came Jesus and the Jews and Romans viewed him and his followers as members of a cult and attempted the same solution.  Obviously, both of those efforts failed.

Christianity had no better luck attempting the same outcome when Mohammed came along.  The Crusades ultimately were an utter failure.  And then mainstream Christianity, having not learned any historical lessons, made the same attempt to eliminate the Mormons.  They were driven west and ultimately south which is the reason that Governor Romney’s father, George was born in Mexico.  They were attempting to survive religious persecution – their First Amendment rights and protections notwithstanding.

It should be apparent that given enough time, today’s “cult” can evolve into a respected mainstream religion.

Returning to Webster’s definition of “cult” let’s turn our attention to the second definition which is given:

“An instance of great veneration, of a person, ideal, or thing, especially as manifested by a body of admirers.”

I would argue that definition very accurately describes the attitude that the President enjoys among his supporters.  Yes, I realize that there are those holding overpaid government positions or who are charter members of the welfare wagon who feel threatened that a responsible economic policy might threaten their way of life.  I appreciate their concern.

To me they are making a rational selection in their choice for President – although it is a short term one as we simply cannot continue on this path for much longer before the whole system will collapse, making the banking crisis look like a Sunday school picnic.

It is not to them I speak as they haven’t ears or the desire to listen.  It is to those who are willing to look honestly at the history of the four years of the Obama White House and who ask themselves, did the President deliver on his election promises; did he cut the deficit in half as he promised; did he bring about the full employment he told us he would put in effect; did he improve the lot of minorities throughout this country as he said he would; did he do anything that he promised which was why we voted for him in the first place – hoping not just for a change but a change for the better?

If you can honestly answer yes to those questions then I can certainly understand why you would continue to support him in office.  I would also like the name of your local drug pusher so that I can get a supply of whatever you’re on.  I would like to live in a euphoric Never-Never Land too.

If not, I wonder if this qualifies you as a member of a cult.  The final meeting may be convened on November 6, 2012.

Advertisements

I DID THE MATH

And the answer is 92,690.  I checked my calculations several times and I am certain this is correct.

You may ask, “What was the question?”  So here it is:

“What is the grand total of all the numbered IRS forms which Mitt Romney and his wife Ann had to include in their 2011 Individual Income Tax Return in order to comply with the Internal Revenue Code for filing?”

Yes the Romneys, with the assistance of Price Waterhouse Coopers had to file fifteen separate forms, each bearing its special IRS identification number and if you add the numbers on the forms up you get 92,690.  (In addition there was an alphabet soup of other forms included).  The total number of pages for this return was 104.

I have to admit that my favorite was Form 8082.  It is entitled, “Notice of Inconsistent Treatment or Administrative Adjustment Request (AAR).”  What in the name of all that is holy does that even mean?  Was this form invented by a psychopath whose real goal in life is to confuse us with his mind games?

But back to our subject …

While this number of pages might not have been sufficient to call for the downing of one of the ancient redwoods in the Pacific Northwest, I suspect the axe fell on at least one small birch or elm to provide the sacrifice and the paper to complete the return.

If you choose to review the return you will find out something we already knew.  Mr. and Mrs. Romney are successful people – at least as far as we measure success by the amount of money a person earns.  They reported an Adjusted Gross Income of $20,908,000 for year 2011 and paid Federal Income Tax in the amount of $3,227,000 on that.

I can hear the groans from the left of the auditorium.  That is only 15.4% of their income paid in tax.  That doesn’t seem fair when the average taxpayer pays at a higher effective tax rate.  Much could be said in favor of that point of view.  A flat tax would make it “fair” in an absolute sense for each of us.  We would all pay the same rate.

However, the problem with that is that paying 15% of your income as a minimum wage earner has a far more dramatic effect on your ability to live than it does for a person who earns millions per year.  (And I think we would get a lot of flak from CPA firms like Price Waterhouse Coopers, not to mention all the folks at IRS who suddenly would be out of a job).

There is one other item in the Romneys’ return that I would like to point out to my readers.  They voluntarily donated $4,020,680 to charity.  Their $3 Million payment in tax was compulsory.  Their donation of $4 Million was voluntary.  If you consider both of these in toto as a “payment to American society” – the percentage of their income which they handed over to others represents 34.6% of their income.

One of the allegations leveled against candidate-presumptive Romney is that as a wealthy man he has no concern for the ordinary person.  The amount of his and his wife’s charitable donations suggest otherwise.

I did the math.  Feel free to check my figures.

Tag Cloud