Perspective: Labels, taxes and hate

I recently had discussions about what exactly does conservative and liberal mean in a political sense.

We have varying interpretations, so as a political independent, I started to research the subject from various political viewpoints, right wing, left wing, democrat, republican and independent. My interest was based on what appears to be increasing hate speech on both sides and a widening of the political interpretations amid ridiculous labeling, like “You watch MSNBC, you’re a Communist” or “You believe the false news on Fox, then you’re a white supremacist Nazi lover.”

Too much polarization and hatred I told my friends. I don’t think either statement is correct.

Research shows John F. Kennedy, the nation’s first Catholic president, considered himself as a liberal and defined being a liberal…”someone who looks ahead and not behind, someone who welcomes new ideas without rigid reactions, someone who cares about the welfare of the people, their health, their housing, their schools, their jobs, their civil rights and their civil liberties…”

George Washington stated… “As Mankind becomes more liberal, they will be more apt to allow that all those who conduct themselves as worthy members of the community are equally entitled to the protections of civil government. I hope ever to see America among the foremost nations of justice and liberality.”

But, what about being a Conservative? A Republican Senator recently stated… “I believe being a conservative is measured and reliable. Conservative foreign policy is where you embrace your allies and recognize your enemies,” but also stated, “That’s a long way from where we are today.”

Google defines conservatism as any political philosophy that favors tradition (in the sense of various religious, cultural, or nationally defined beliefs and customs) in the face of external forces for change, and is critical of proposals for radical social change.

A person can have conservative ideas and liberal ideas regarding certain subjects. What does that make that person? Politically independent?

Personally, I lean towards conservative thinking when it comes to fiscal responsibility. I don’t like our government spending money that we have to borrow. So I’m wondering why my conservative friends are supporting a proposed tax reform that will reincorporate trickle-down economics by increasing the deficit. They talk about a tax break for the middle class (Oh, they will throw us a few bones), yet they really want to lower the corporate rate from 35 to 20%.


Because we are told that the US has the highest corporate tax in the world and that we are non-competitive. What they say is very misleading, to say the least. The effective US corporate tax rate is 18.7% due to the many varied deductions and write-offs in our current corporate tax code. This proposal seems to be just a trillion dollar tax break for the super wealthy, who own most of the corporate wealth in the U.S.

They will increase the public debt to cover this tax decrease for the wealthy by 1.7 trillion dollars. All Americans (mostly the middle class) will have to pay back… plus interest.

Call my liberal friends tax and spend Democrats. I’m wondering if we should call my conservative friends borrow and spend Republicans. In a booming economy like we have had for the last eight years, it is absolutely not necessary to borrow more money to stimulate the economy. The proponents say that will make our economy stronger and create more jobs.

We can’t fill the jobs now and Trump wants to cut legal immigration in half.

Doesn’t make sense to me.

Dan Barrett

5 Responses to Perspective: Labels, taxes and hate

  1. Conservative Millennial November 9, 2017 at 8:54 am #

    Dan, your posts usually lose credit for me because you tend to be so biased but I appreciated this post because it was fairly neutral and critiquing of both sides. I would disagree with the “Borrow and spend republicans” analogy. I believe those Republicans are what the popular term RINO is for. If we are talking about what the ideal Republican believes I think looking to someone like Rand Paul is the way to go. Cut government spending so much that even with the lower tax revenue we would be fine.

  2. B Gogel November 9, 2017 at 12:38 pm #

    Dan, This is better than your normal posts. However, the “so called” liberals of today are not classical liberals who emphasize liberty. They are mostly “so called” progressives who believe in big government and more government control of our lives.

    To better understand what conservatives believe, I recommend the following”

    “Liberty and Tyranny” by Mark Levin.

    “The Conservative Intellectual Movement in America” by George H. Nash.

    To better understand the differences between the “left” and “right” political outlooks, I recommend the following:

    “A Conflict of Visions” by Thomas Sowell.

    “The Righteous Mind, Why Good people at Divided by Politics and Religion” by Jonathan Haidt. (Note: Haidt is a Democratic Professor)

    To better understand concerns of conservatives, please read “The Intimidation Game” by Kimberly Strassel.

    I know that reading takes time, but it the only way to get a deeper understanding.

  3. dan barrett November 9, 2017 at 12:44 pm #

    That’s OK CM, a lot of folks on the Republican side do not like my posts, because I am biased as I lean toward progressive understanding of social issues, and I am very sorry that we have an idiot President now, even though I voted against Hillary. My European friends still mention just how Americans can be so dumb. I know as a nation of 300 million, their are so many good politicians and statesmen from all political spectrums available to serve. I do like Rand Paul as I supported his dad, Ron, a few years ago. But today, I just don’t understand why todays proposal has to include borrowing 1.7 trillion dollars in a booming economy. Does one realize how much daily interest we are paying on the national debt now? Should be completely unnecessary to borrow more money to stimulate the economy. Booming economies don’t need stimulus. The proponents say that this tax cut for the wealthy will create trickle down benefits for the “working class” that will make our economy stronger and create more jobs and that we can pay back the borrowed funds with strong economic growth with everyone paying more taxes in the future. As a fiscal conservative, I just don’t believe them. We need to pay down the debt, not add to it, just so the politicians can say they gave us a tax cut. All political – not practical. Frustrating indeed.

    • B Gogel November 9, 2017 at 8:40 pm #

      Dan, I am an Independent.

      I AGREE that we need to pay down the debt The problem is “out of control” and wasteful government spending. I do not remember you complaining about the huge growth in the national debt under Obama. I apologize if you did.

      Please compare the level of federal government spending today versus 10 years ago. The growth is much higher than the rate of inflation. The federal government needs to become much smaller if we hope to get the national debt under control.

      I remember the tax cuts under John F Kennedy. Because of spurred economic growth, revenue to the federal government increased after the tax cuts. This also occurred under Reagan.

      Please read “Economics in One Lesson” for a better understanding of how an economy really works.


  4. dan barrett November 10, 2017 at 11:13 am #

    You are quite right Mr. B. Gogel, I did not complain about the huge growth of the national debt under President Obama because, at the time I was in Japan assisting the Commander US Naval Forces, Japan. But I do remember that I was very concerned about the stimulus package and prayed that his actions would work to stop the severe recession of 2008 which were costing the US economy 800,000 jobs a month. After thought, maybe it was necessary. It seemed to help, it did stopped the bleeding, but left us with a heavy burden to pay back. Today we have a chance as true Republican or Democrat fiscal conservatives to do what is right for the country. Tax reform is what the powers in congress should consider, but they don’t. They always degenerate to same oh, same oh, tax cuts mantra which sounds better politically. True reform would involve serious bi-partisan conferences to put country first, ahead of party. Seems like typical politicians are still running the show who are only interested in keeping their power. To hell with what is best for the country. I was hoping this congress which is controlled by one party at the moment to do something good for the country for a change (and take credit for it), like reduce the national debt, instead of lowering tax revenues and increase the national debt by borrowing, then crowing “Look, we gave everybody a tax cut”. This is the perfect time to do something good for the country. A booming economy, gives us a chance to reduce the public debt, not borrow more. Since WWII, the neither party seemingly put fiscal responsibility above party politics. Even though I liked President Reagan, everyone knows that Reaganomics didn’t work to grow the economy enough to offset tax cuts and that tax cuts aren’t the most effective way to create jobs. And talk of wasteful spending, we must yell each time it raises its ugly head, like today for instance. The first Lady stays behind in China to visit the Great Wall, while Trump flies off to Vietnam. She will use another US Government Aircraft to later fly to Alaska, then back to DC. Additional extra unnecessary costs to the taxpayer: $500,000. A drop in the bucket and they don’t give a damn. It’s not their money. It’s our money. Sorry, I can’t stand the massive waste and corruption in our federal government and I have seen a lot. The Trump people don’t seem to care about efficiencies at all. Take for instance, Treasury Secretary, Steve Mnuchin who was caught trying to use a US Government plane to take him and his wife on a honeymoon to several countries in Europe or Health and Human Services Secretary, Tom Price who “resigned” for waste of taxpayers’ dollars by needlessly using very expensive charter flights and for trading in stocks he benefited from that was effected by legislation he introduced while in Congress. Interior Secretary Zinke secretly flying of private executive private jets owned by a oil company that he is supposed to oversee (in violation of Interior Department regulations involving conflict of interests) and arranging lucrative no-bid contracts for his friends in his small Idaho home town where his son use to work. Zinke denies any wrongdoing, but he allowed the “Officials Not to Benefit” clause required in all contracts involving US Funds to be deleted. Sadly, just the tip of the iceberg. So many greedy politicians. The Trump administration corruption and lies continues unabated. We need good leaders, like Ron Paul…not weirdoes like Judge Roy Moore of Alabama, supported by white supremacist Steve Bannon who compares his affair with a 14 year old girl when he was 34 to Mary and Joseph, the parents of Jesus. What hypocrites. May God have mercy on us.