Michael Maiello's picture

    Obama Is Breaking The Law

    What I hate about war is that it makes good people do bad things.  Also, that people have their lives cut short for bad reasons, that money is wasted and that generally only the world's worst people are any better for all the sacrifices made.  But also that it makes good people do bad things.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    The Untaxed 51%

    Lately, we've been hearing from conservatives that 51% of Americans don't pay federal income taxes.  This is meant to put the kibosh on any attempts at raising taxes on wealthy individuals by painting everyone from the middle class on down as freeloaders.  We are already, the argument goes, letting the wealthy pay for the upkeep of the country, so the next sacrifice needs to come from working people.  I took this issue up in The Daily this week.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    The Truth About ConocoPhillips and Taxes

    ConocoPhillips CEO John Mulva thinks that denying tax breaks to his highly profitable global oil and gas company is "Un-American."  People have been really taken with his rhetoric on this one, but his words sent me to his company's 10K.  The truth about Conoco's taxes is buried in the footnotes and it's very revealing.  It's at the core my my column for The Daily today, but I want to get a bit more granular here.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Rape Apologists, Elite Apologists Or Something Else?

    It's very difficult to talk about (okay, I'll say it) outgoing IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn, if you want to say anything other than "let's let the justice system turn and accept the ultimate result," without swallowing your own foot.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Noodling About Newt

    I don't believe that Newt Gingrich's candidacy for the Presidency is real in the slightest.  Like Ron Paul or Sarah Palin, Newt makes a great deal of money selling books and himself as a speaker and lecturer, to conservative groups.  This candidacy is a way of using donor money to promote himself as a lecturer, author and pundit.  For Palin, it happened by accident.  But Newt's been an industry ever since he left office.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Raise The Capital Gains Tax

    Since the 1990s, both the Democrats and Republicans have agreed that capital gains taxes should be kept lower than income taxes in order to encourage investment and to support the economy.  It's really pure trickle down theory and further proof for the cynical that whenever the Democrats and Republicans agree on something, it's bad.  Setting capital gains and dividend taxes at the same level as income taxes is the subject of my column today in The Daily.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    "Fight Your Way Out"

    I'm extremely impressed that it was the President's decision for the Pentagon to use more than 2 helipcopters for the Bin Laden mission, in case something happened to one of the vehicles.  "I don’t want you to plan for an option that doesn’t allow you to fight your way out,” he said.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Disturbed About Libya

    As already noted here at Dag, a NATO air strike killed Gadhafi's son and narrowly missed the dictator and his wife.  The way I see it, this isn't the war we were sold.  Weren't we told quite explicitly that Ghadhafi wasn't being personally targeted?

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Comment Systems Down Across The Web!

    Talking Points Memo reports that its commenting system has crashed due to a failure at amazon.com.  The failure of Amazon's cloud problem has hobbled Web sites all over the place leaving articles and events uncommented upon.

    At the White House, there was much rejoicing.

    Michael Maiello's picture

    It Is Time For Obama To Release His Birth Certificate

    There's no question about it.  The people have the right, no the obligation, to see the President's birth certificate.  I don't even care if it says he was born in Kenya.  Because, says Donald Trump, if Obama releases his birth certificate, Trump will make his tax returns public.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Wall Street And The Debt

    Looks like John Boehner has been paying visits to Wall Street bankers lately, trying to figure out how close the Congress can bring the government to hitting the debt ceiling before they all freak out and sell America to China.  Or, more likely, freak out and stop donating money to Republican candidates for national office.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Cut And Run?

    Krugman today captures the fear that's been gnawing at me all weekend about Obama.  I get that he's in a rough spot and I get that losing the House had serious consequences for our side of the debate.  I get that the President might have to give up $38 billion in spending that he didn't want to give up.

    But does he have to act like he's enjoying it?

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Attack Of The Rich

    The deficit was caused by the financial crisis and the resulting recession, which will cost the U.S. $500 billion a year in tax revenues going forward.  Absent the recession, the "trillion dollar deficits" we're worried about now would be half trillion dollar deficits and we'd be talking about how to grow our way out of them.

    Absent the recession and absent two wars (one justified but mismanaged so as to still be ongoing even though it should have been a short military operation, one that didn't have to happen at all) those half trillion dollar deficits would be even smaller.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Paul Ryan Says You're Lazy

    Late last year, as The Daily was setting up for its launch, I wrote a few sample columns that never saw the light of day beyond the various product testers and decisionsmakers within News Corp.  This was my first one, about Paul Ryan, who just today came out with a plan to "fix" Medicare by killing the program and moving future retirees back into the private insurance market that was historically so bad for retirees that we needed Medicare to fix it.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Are You In?

    Barack Obama's re-election bid has launched and I guess that means the silly season is upon us.  We all have to band together to beat Michele Bachmann or some such nonsense.  So how are you all feeling about this, Daggers?  Too soon?  I know it's too soon for me.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Hating On Workers

    I took a chance with my column this week and wrote about something other than Libya.  I'm always more comfortable with social and financial topics anyway as I totally hate relying on my B.A. in Theatre with an emphasis in dramatic writing when people ask my what qualifies me to bicker with generals over combat strategy.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Nothing's Ever Simple In War

    Juan Cole's strongly worded "Open Letter To The Left" about Libya seemed designed to take down a very dangerous bit of information that's come out recently but hasn't gotten nearly enough attention in my opinion -- the Libyan rebels we're defending have real and substantial ties to Al-Qaeda.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    I Think We Have To Get Over Rwanda Guilt

    There, I said it.  It was not an easy thing to say.  Especially not after reading this from the Atlantic 10 years ago.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Lost Amidst All Of These Wars...

    ...are the still unresolved issues stemming from the financial crisis.  For example, the FDIC filed suit against three Washington Mutual executives last week seeking to recover $900 million that the government lost arranging for the bank's eventual sale to JPMorgan Chase.  I wrote about the suit and the absurd defense of the bankers in my column today.

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    Michael Maiello's picture

    Budget Hawking All Over Libya

    KGB wants to know why so many Keynesian, "the debt is not an issue" lefties have become budget hawks where the Libyan war is concerned.  I'm certainly guilty of this.  When it comes to the economy, I'm so Keynesian that Keynes would question my sanity.  I have advocated using the powers of the Federal Reserve to pay people's credit card bills.  I believe that Social Security benefits should be expanded, not cut.

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