Morning Reads — February 26

You might be asking yourself, “why is Will writing the Morning Reads on a Friday??” It’s because I’m a good person and don’t you forget it.

My regular format will return on Monday. You’re getting end-of-the-week Will. We’ll see how this turns out.

Enjoy your weekend!

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John Konop
John Konop

GOP Debate: 1) The healthcare exchange demonstrated no one has a real plan. Politically, Trump told people what they want to hear people they will not die on the street, but no nuts and bolts. 2) Of the 5 candidates left, Cruz could never win a general, Kasich is by far would be the best candidate for a win. 3) The debate will not change the election, same old attack, Trump is not conservative enough and he is rough negotiator who is not PC. How is this attack new? Would this not of already been factored into the numbers? When… Read more »

John Konop
John Konop

Sorry about typos….

augusta52
augusta52

Good points John, especially on entitlements. Trump has no credibility when he says he will cut out “waste, fraud and abuse” to “save” Social Security. There are no bold voices (among the 5 on stage) on entitlements, like perhaps allowing younger workers to get out of the leaky system and set up their own private accounts. It is fashionable to attack EPA or pork barrel spending in attempts to balance the budget but neither makes up a substantial part of the federal budget. Cruz is too “Bible Belt” for much of the country.. It is pretty clear he has very… Read more »

John Konop
John Konop

A,

I do think a private fade out into an annuity type account is part of the puzzle. I also have proposed for years ending payroll taxes and replacing them with a VAT or NST. It would increase employment, and have more people than just workers paying for it. And because tourist from other countries would help pay and it would lower the net tax rate needed. That would create more stimulus money for consumers to spend and employers to hire ie jobs, jobs….

xdog
xdog

Happy Friday morning to you, Will.

Rubio a cannibal? I guess you mean that admiringly. He seemed kind of bratty to me. Not that he was wrong in his basic facts, and his choice of topics–Trump U, illegal workers, tax returns–was solid, but he went on and on. If he or anyone else had tried to take down Trump months ago maybe he wouldn’t have seemed so frantic.

ScottNAtlanta
ScottNAtlanta

Lets talk about your #7. Your biggest issue is a non issue. You also misidentify the term “fiscal cliff”…I’ll let Wikipedia deal with the definition https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_fiscal_cliff I love the term “entitlement reform” what you should say is cuts…because thats what “reforms” are (if they are not, feel free to prove me wrong). Also, replacing payroll taxes with a VAT would be a huge tax increase on those who spend the highest portion of their income (the poor). On the macro side, explain to everyone how a country that creates its own currency (out of thin air), and any money it… Read more »

John Konop
John Konop

Scott, 1) ………replacing payroll taxes with a VAT would be a huge tax increase on those who spend the highest portion of their income (the poor)………. Today you are paying 12.4 % of your wages on Social Security and 2.9 percent for Medicare. The tax rate would be way lower since it would charge everyone ie tourist from other countries and businesses/people on consumption. You realize the increase would be on people that make the most money ie consumption? Currently today you only pay the tax on the first 130kish nothing over it? Obviously would be less for anyone in… Read more »

Noway2016
Noway2016

Didn’t even watch it. I have debate fatigue. Thanks for the summary, John. Watching Fox this am to get their take. It seems Rubio had some good zingers…

Noway2016
Noway2016

Vincente Fox just got owned by Trump! “The wall just got 10 feet taller!” Hysterical….

Benevolus
Benevolus

Have you seen those ads Cruz has on TV here? It sounds like he really wants to kill some people!

Noway2016
Noway2016

Here, meaning Georgia? I have not. What are they like?

Benevolus
Benevolus

He starts out saying “If I am elected Commander in Chief”, then goes on to say he will KILL the terrorists, and if Islamic radicals plot against us they will be “signing their death warrant”. It’s very dramatic and harsh. He actually comes off looking like a lunatic to me. It sounds like something they would find after-the-fact on a Facebook post from some mass murderer. Except the production values are much better.

Noway2016
Noway2016

More red meat, B. I need an angioplasty!

FreeDuck
FreeDuck

Hah! Yeah I saw that twice last night. “We will kill the terrorists” he said with glee. I wonder if he remembers who was president when we killed Osama bin Laden?

Bart
Bart

My debate headline, ‘Pit Yorkies gang up to attack the big dog, bark bigger than bite’ Trump definitely took some hits last night, but he didn’t just rollover and let the 2 senators who have never created private sector jobs get to him. Kind of wild watching the Cuban/Canadian Tag Team lash out at the one guy on the stage who has created jobs, negotiated healthcare deals, paid gazillions in taxes and built a hugely successful company. But that is how politics works these days, insiders trying to protect their sacred turf from guys who have actual accomplishments beyond adding… Read more »

John Konop
John Konop

Bart, I agree, when Trump called them both out for never hiring anybody ever in the private sector that was a big hit. I give Carson and Kasich credit because they did well in the private sector. I have talked to a lot of Trump and Careon supporters, BTW, not hard to find where we live! The interesting point, I hear all the time is they do not care if they know the details. The supporters believe the current crowd had thier chance, and look how screwed up it is…..They are both smart enough to hire the right people that… Read more »

Bart
Bart

Most folks I talk to are settling on Trump, many as their second choice after the first bailed from the race. For those supporting No Show Rubio, I can’t see how he wins in November with his strict positions against women, lack of experience and inability to operate off script. I guess I’m old fashioned when it comes to showing up for work, something Marco has failed to do for at least the past year. He had a chance to gain experience as a senator but decided he would forgo that opportunity to run for president. Kind of like a… Read more »

gcp
gcp

Ok here we go: Trumpet. Loser. Childish name calling, unable to explain expensive tax plan, health care or balanced budget plan Rubio. Winner. Explained his immigration plan, only candidate to mention entitlements. Successfully punched and counterpunched Trumpet. Best line was when he told Trumpet w/o his inheritance he would be selling watches in Manhattan. Cruz. Good performance. Explained SCOTUS appointment process. Challenged Trumpet on democrat campaign contributions and Trumpet’s tax returns. Kasich. Fair. Nothing new. Once again told us father was a postman. Talked about his phantom, unseen balanced budget proposal. Wants “regime change”in N. Korea. Dana Bash was excellent.… Read more »

John Konop
John Konop

gcp, ………Cruz. Good performance. Explained SCOTUS appointment process. Challenged Trumpet on democrat campaign contributions and Trumpet’s tax returns……. You are a smart guy, what Cruz wants is to privatize Medicare and allow insurances to not treat pre-existing conditions. As you know the vast majority of Medicare people have pre-existing conditions, and this plan would basically be a death sentence if they got sick on a macro. BTW it seemed Rubio was supporting the idea as well, at least for the rest of us not on Medicare. The majority of Tea Party members do not support this! This will be show… Read more »

gcp
gcp

Rubio and Cruz want a Paul Ryan type Medicare plan, additionally Cruz has talked about raising eligibility age. Not sure if they want to make the plan mandatory for seniors or voluntary. Because of the large number of seniors insurers would have to cover pre-existing or risk going out of business. Most all seniors I know have pre-existing conditions. I like the idea because insurance companies would know seniors have a fixed amount of money to spend which would encourage insurance company efficiency. With our current Medicare system we don’t see much efficiency. For instance current Medicare policy will pay… Read more »

John Konop
John Konop

Gcp, On the drugs you have to also open up the ability to import drugs easier. You are right that negotiations only helps a portion of the problem. As far as insurance companies risking going out business for not covering pre- existing conditions that had been happening for years prior to the change…..I do this for living on the lending side, severity accounts drive bad debt. They way you make money is managing the most toxic write offs. In the insurance business that means any major care issues. You can show low face pricing per month if you do not… Read more »

gcp
gcp

Presumably drug importation would be included in any drug price negotiations. One problem with drug negotiations (per drug companies) is government would lose the rebates they currently receive under part D.

As for harming seniors by changing Medicare or SS, I like Rubio’s response.
“My mother is 87 years old. Why would I want to hurt her?”

John Konop
John Konop

……..As for harming seniors by changing Medicare or SS, I like Rubio’s response. “My mother is 87 years old. Why would I want to hurt her?”…… We have lots of unintended consequences from ill thought out policy from Washington ie Medicare Part D, No Child Left Behind, War on Drugs…….That is why I want to see details. Ironically years ago as you know I warned about No Child Left Behind, Medicare Part D……when I saw the details. Was I wrong about NCLB driving up cost, teach to the test and killing us with killing the skilled worker track? Was I… Read more »

gcp
gcp

Agree on NCLB and I would add “Race to the Top.” And yes Part D was a bad program although Republican supporters would call it a success because it came in under budget.

Charlie
Charlie

The highlight of the debate can be found right here:

http://www.LinesAroundStates.com

Or in a word: Bigly

xdog
xdog

Bigly–In a tumid, swelling, blustering manner; haughtily; violently.

He brawleth bigly.
From More’s Utopia.

Seems to fit.

xdog
xdog

Bloomberg has a story up about prison reform in the US with a special focus on Deal’s leadership in Georgia.
http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2016-02-26/republicans-upend-tough-on-crime-politics-in-primary-states

Doug Deal
Doug Deal

The fact that Kasich is trailing these three is a clear indication as to why the GOP is in deep trouble. I am a lifelong conservative Republican and I am beginning to despise the party. I am tired of the dumbed down nonsense. Senators are bad candidates and these are bad Senators. The GOP has tied to these guys as anti trump saviors, yet we need anti-candidates for them as well, it seems. If you think two junior Senators are going to pick apart Hillary on experience or anything else, good luck. Mathematically when the party marginalizes Kasich and Trump… Read more »

gcp
gcp

Christie supports Trumpet. Evidently Christie wants to be AG or could it be VP?

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/02/chris-christie-endorses-donald-trump-219861

ScottNAtlanta
ScottNAtlanta

My guess is that he offered to help Christie pay off his campaign debt

Noway2016
Noway2016

VP! There’s your ticket.