American Elephants

French President Sours on Obama by American Elephant

Under President Bush and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Franco-American relations had dramatically improved. Sarkozy won election on a decidedly pro-American, pro-capitalism platform. He and Bush got along famously.

That was then; this is now.

Now he refers to Obama as weak and meek, and, “is annoyed by what he sees as the naivety and the herd mentality of the media.”

So much for “restoring America’s standing” in the world.

While Rome Burns… by American Elephant

World Leaders kick off global food-crisis summit with lavish 8 course dinner:

The dinner consisted of 18 dishes in eight courses including caviar, smoked salmon, Kyoto beef and a “G8 fantasy dessert”.

The banquet was accompanied by five different wines from around the world including champagne, a French Bourgogne and sake.

African leaders including the heads of Ethiopia, Tanzania and Senegal who had taken part in talks during the day were not invited to the function.

The dinner came just hours after a “working lunch” consisting of six courses including white asparagus and truffle soup, crab and a supreme of chicken.

…On the flight to the summit, Mr Brown urged Britons to cut food waste as part of a global drive to help avert the food crisis. [emphasis mine]

Symbolism matters. This was a boneheaded move by all those involved.

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.

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