American Elephants

So you say you want to raise taxes? by The Elephant's Child
August 15, 2007, 4:50 am
Filed under: Domestic Policy, Economy, News, Politics | Tags: , , , ,

The late Walter Wriston, former CEO of Citibank remarked in The Twilight of Sovereignty,

“Capital will go where it is wanted and stay where it is well treated. It will flee from manipulation or onerous regulation of its value or use and no government can restrain it for long.”

A message that should perhaps be engraved on small plaques and distributed to the members of Congress. Or perhaps pages could be bribed to scribe it on congressional desks.

Nicolas SarkozyWhen France’s Nicolas Sarkozy was campaigning for president last spring, he went to London where over 300,000 French ex-patriots are working. This makes London one of France’s largest cities.

In France, the top income-tax rate has been 48.1 percent—one of the highest in Europe. On top of that, France has had a “fortune” tax of 0.5 percent on assets greater than 760,000 Euros that rises as the assets increase. Despite political expectations, the tax has been unsuccessful at raising revenues. Apparently the successful decided to be successful in London instead.

Unfortunately, it is often the most creative and entrepreneurial who, while not yet rich, are hoping to get there and go where they can accomplish it.

Democrats who are anxious to raise taxes—especially on “the rich”—need to explain just where they think the money to finance new businesses comes from.

Not so fast, Harry! by American Elephant

Harry Pelosi

…so said Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi in a letter to President Bush last month—several weeks before all the “Surge” troops had even arrived. How they could claim to know the outcome of a strategy that hadn’t even been fully implemented is beyond me. Not being one to believe in clairvoyance, I tend to believe that they, like everyone else, did not know what future results would be.

All one is left with, then, is that they want the surge to fail.

How else can one possibly interpret Democrats’ declarations of “the war is lost” and “the surge is a failure” before the Surge had even fully begun, other than as a party that has so invested their political futures in defeat, that they are doing everything in their power to ensure that defeat happens?

Since those proclamations, however, a funny thing has happened. the “failure” is succeeding. Even liberals are admitting it. First, perhaps, was Pulitzer prize winning war correspondent, and New York Times Baghdad Bureau Chief, John Burns’ assessment that, “I think there’s no doubt that those extra 30,000 American troops are making a difference.” Followed closely by and Op-ed entitled, A War We Just Might Win,” by Michael O’Hanlon and Kenneth Pollack of the Brookings Institution.

The latest in a line of similar assessments, recognizing the success of the Surge, comes from the German magazine, Der Spiegel (HT/ James Taranto)

Ramadi is an irritating contradiction of almost everything the world thinks it knows about Iraq–it is proof that the US military is more successful than the world wants to believe. Ramadi demonstrates that large parts of Iraq–not just Anbar Province, but also many other rural areas along the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers–are essentially pacified today. This is news the world doesn’t hear: Ramadi, long a hotbed of unrest, a city that once formed the southwestern tip of the notorious “Sunni Triangle,” is now telling a different story, a story of Americans who came here as liberators, became hated occupiers and are now the protectors of Iraqi reconstruction. . . .

Something is happening in Iraq that is consistently concealed behind images of bombings. The situation that the White House and its deceptive advisors had erroneously predicted before their invasion–that the troops would be greeted with candy and flowers–could in fact still come true. That’s already the case in many places. [emphasis added]

Also of particular interest is the admission that good news in Iraq is news the world doesn’t want to hear.

Now that things are looking hopeful in Iraq—Mark Levin reported on his show Monday—word on the hill is that Democrats will push for General Petraeus to give his much anticipated report in a secret closed-door session. I’m trying to get a linkable source for this information, but it wouldn’t surprise me in the least.

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