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(The Hill)   The Senators in Charge of re-writing the tax code promise their colleagues that any suggestions they make on what tax exemptions to keep or axe will be kept secret for 50 years because fark an informed voting public, that's why   (thehill.com) divider line 68
    More: Sad, Baucus, Orrin Hatch, id numbers, John Thune, Senate Finance Committee, K Street, tax exemption, direct access  
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1613 clicks; posted to Politics » on 25 Jul 2013 at 4:18 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-07-25 02:53:15 PM
What a crock of bullshiat.  If they don't have the balls to talk about it in public then they shouldn't talk about it at all.

Keeping it secret for 50 years means they anticipate some politicians or their offspring to be holding onto the same seats in at least 48 years.
 
2013-07-25 02:59:48 PM
Cowards
 
2013-07-25 03:01:55 PM
Term limits.

Now.
 
2013-07-25 03:17:26 PM
Probably afraid Intuit and H&R will start lobbying against them.
 
2013-07-25 03:22:08 PM
If you want honest debate and compromise, this is the only way you can do it. This way a Republican can say "I'm willing to increase the marginal rates on corporations" and a Democrat can say "I'm willing to extend the exemptions on estate taxes" and in public lay the blame for such things appearing in the final bill on the other side. If you have it all in the open both sides are stuck saying "I won't move an inch, I stand on principal" because otherwise they'll be skewered by their constituents and facing a primary challenge come reelection.
 
2013-07-25 03:25:01 PM

nmrsnr: If you want honest debate and compromise, this is the only way you can do it. This way a Republican can say "I'm willing to increase the marginal rates on corporations" and a Democrat can say "I'm willing to extend the exemptions on estate taxes" and in public lay the blame for such things appearing in the final bill on the other side. If you have it all in the open both sides are stuck saying "I won't move an inch, I stand on principal" because otherwise they'll be skewered by their constituents and facing a primary challenge come reelection.


I hear what you're saying.  But is that a precedent we want to set in order get passed all this obstructionism, deadlock, and lack of progress?
 
2013-07-25 03:28:12 PM

Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.


That does nothing for the underlying problem "moneyed interests shaping public policy".  All other things being equal, term limits serve only to replace one person of a certain type with another of the same type.  Address the cause, not the effect.
 
2013-07-25 03:29:33 PM
"democracy dies behind closed doors"
-Judge Damon Keith

Look I get the whole "if we make real suggestions we'll be vulnerable to demagogues who twist our words to attack us " thing....but you know what?  There's an easier solution to that than drawing a veil over the process of making arugable the single most important federal law on the books.   And that is Standing up for yourselves,  treating voters like adults and giving them paragraph long explanations rather than soundbytes, and < I know this is crazy, but making a Bi-Partisan agreement that Senators from the party opposite will loudly and publicly come to your defense if you are attacked over a sincere suggestion to actually make the tax code work better.   And in this Era of Tea Party Primaries, maybe get the same agreement from the more extremist members of your own party.  But that would require everyone in the senate to be a grown up working in good faith to make the coutnry better and not a self-dealing opportunist...so we're farked, basically
 
2013-07-25 03:45:14 PM

Diogenes: I hear what you're saying.  But is that a precedent we want to set in order get passed all this obstructionism, deadlock, and lack of progress?


I think the precedent has already been set. This is the way our government works, and until people actually want to have honest debate rather than bludgeon each other with out of context quotes, it's the way the government will always work.

Magorn: There's an easier solution to that than drawing a veil over the process of making arugable the single most important federal law on the books.   And that is Standing up for yourselves,  treating voters like adults and giving them paragraph long explanations rather than soundbytes, and < I know this is crazy, but making a Bi-Partisan agreement that Senators from the party opposite will loudly and publicly come to your defense if you are attacked over a sincere suggestion to actually make the tax code work better.   And in this Era of Tea Party Primaries, maybe get the same agreement from the more extremist members of your own party.  But that would require everyone in the senate to be a grown up working in good faith to make the coutnry better and not a self-dealing opportunist...so we're farked, basically


That's a better solution, but also a much less realistically achievable one. Praise from the opposing party is not a boon to politicians, while the other side may respect and like you more, they're still not going to vote for you, because they honestly disagree with your position, while those who did vote are you are less likely to vote for you again because you caved on an issue important to them. Compromise is good because it gets things done, but in politics it's a dangerous habit. It's very much like the prisoner's dilemma, actually.
 
2013-07-25 03:52:49 PM

Magorn: There's an easier solution to that than drawing a veil over the process of making arugable the single most important federal law on the books.


What if amendments weren't sponsored, just added to a big pile to be voted on individually? The entire body "sponsors" the legislation, amendments are debated/voted on purely based on their merits (and not based on the seniority of the submitting member)?

We'd probably have to limit it to taxes only (which'd NEVER get abused, I pinky-swear), and even then something like a 2/3rd (or 3/4ths) vote to use that system, but instead of having 2 teams competing for the "win", it'd (in my head, anyway) turn more into an actual policy/substance debate. It'd probably also tease out some moderate opinions - I'm not sure that all GOP members are batshiat insane, but I am sure that leadership wants them to appear so.

Though it would mean Congressyahoos can't crow about the pork they bring home. Boo hoo, too bad, so sad; but that shouldn't be in a tax code bill anyway.
 
2013-07-25 04:17:05 PM

gameshowhost: That does nothing for the underlying problem "moneyed interests shaping public policy".


Perhaps but it keeps these sorry mother farkers from becoming so farking entrenched that we never get rid of them and the problem exacerbates itself.

I still like the idea of trashing the entire tax code.
 
2013-07-25 04:20:12 PM
Christ our country is in bad shape.
 
2013-07-25 04:20:36 PM
wtf? Why not make everything secret, that way they can never be held accountable for anything
 
2013-07-25 04:24:39 PM

Dancin_In_Anson: gameshowhost: That does nothing for the underlying problem "moneyed interests shaping public policy".

Perhaps but it keeps these sorry mother farkers from becoming so farking entrenched that we never get rid of them and the problem exacerbates itself.

I still like the idea of trashing the entire tax code.


Term limits wouldn't do anything to change the 50 year secrecy for those responsible for farking us over.
 
2013-07-25 04:29:04 PM
The 16th Amendment and the federal progressive income tax have GOT to go away.  Only 53% of the country pays it anymore, and that percentage keeps dropping.  Obviously, it's a political game and the portion of the country that's still forced to pay it represents the chess pieces.

And now with Obama, the IRS has become the 'Mel' character in Scarface.
 
2013-07-25 04:30:26 PM

DarwiOdrade: Dancin_In_Anson: gameshowhost: That does nothing for the underlying problem "moneyed interests shaping public policy".

Perhaps but it keeps these sorry mother farkers from becoming so farking entrenched that we never get rid of them and the problem exacerbates itself.

I still like the idea of trashing the entire tax code.

Term limits wouldn't do anything to change the 50 year secrecy for those responsible for farking us over.


It would keep the same people from still being in power 50 years from now.

/Human life spans are only getting longer.
 
2013-07-25 04:32:22 PM

Neighborhood Watch: The 16th Amendment and the federal progressive income tax have GOT to go away.  Only 53% of the country pays it anymore, and that percentage keeps dropping.


problem: wage stagnation and greed has caused people to earn so little they can't even pay taxes on income.
solution: make them pay taxes in other ways.
 
2013-07-25 04:32:27 PM

Neighborhood Watch: The 16th Amendment and the federal progressive income tax have GOT to go away.  Only 53% of the country pays it anymore, and that percentage keeps dropping.  Obviously, it's a political game and the portion of the country that's still forced to pay it represents the chess pieces.

And now with Obama, the IRS has become the 'Mel' character in Scarface.


Account created: 2013-07-18 05:05:26

No way this is a new troll account.
 
2013-07-25 04:34:03 PM
The tax code has to be published and available, right? It shouldn't be too hard to play connect the dots between money going into congress and who benefits.
 
2013-07-25 04:36:11 PM
There should not be compromise. The ruling party should make all the decisions, and then will face their fate at the hands of voters as a single block. If they f*ck up, another party will be voted into power.
 
2013-07-25 04:43:19 PM

way south: It would keep the same people from still being in power 50 years from now.


But it wouldn't stop them from making secret suggestions about the tax code, and it wouldn't tell us who made which suggestions. I'm not saying term limits are bad, but they're completely irrelevant to this problem.
 
2013-07-25 04:43:59 PM

Pincy: Christ our country is in bad shape.


Pfft - like he cares.
 
2013-07-25 04:44:51 PM
The sad part: this is better than what happened before when it came to backroom horse-trading. At least now we'll have records of who argued for what behind closed doors, just not in their lifetime. Compare that with the Tax Reform Act of 1986 where will never know for sure how gaping loopholes suddenly appeared in the final draft of bills or how some asinine tax credit miraculously survived the tax simplification process.
 
2013-07-25 04:46:18 PM

DarwiOdrade: But it wouldn't stop them from making secret suggestions about the tax code, and it wouldn't tell us who made which suggestions.


We just need another leaker
 
2013-07-25 04:46:33 PM

Neighborhood Watch: Only 53% of the country pays it anymore, and that percentage keeps dropping


Yeah. The top 10%'s net wealth increasing 400% in the last 40 years while everyone else has remained about neutral or fell has nothing to do with that.
 
2013-07-25 04:49:35 PM
Good. Decisions like this should be driven by pragmatism, not electoral politics.
 
2013-07-25 04:52:19 PM
1). Personal exemptions.

That's it. That's the list.
 
2013-07-25 04:58:34 PM

Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.


Term limits only exacerbate the problem. If you know that you're out in X years, forwarding the interests of your constituents is totally irrelevant; you're just there to audition for a private-sector job. .
 
2013-07-25 05:03:01 PM

Albino Squid: Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.

Term limits only exacerbate the problem. If you know that you're out in X years, forwarding the interests of your constituents is totally irrelevant; you're just there to audition for a private-sector job. .


Because they aren't doing that without term limits?
 
2013-07-25 05:12:36 PM

GoldSpider: Albino Squid: Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.

Term limits only exacerbate the problem. If you know that you're out in X years, forwarding the interests of your constituents is totally irrelevant; you're just there to audition for a private-sector job. .

Because they aren't doing that without term limits?


Here's an idea. At the end of each term, we should automatically put each congresscritter on trial by a jury of his/her constituents with the only charge being failure to represent their interests, and stoning as the only penalty.
 
2013-07-25 05:14:18 PM

Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.


Term limits.
Now.

Term limits.
Now.

Term limits.
Now.

Term limits.
Now.

Term limits.
Now.

Term limits.
Now.
 
2013-07-25 05:14:24 PM

GoldSpider: Neighborhood Watch: The 16th Amendment and the federal progressive income tax have GOT to go away.  Only 53% of the country pays it anymore, and that percentage keeps dropping.  Obviously, it's a political game and the portion of the country that's still forced to pay it represents the chess pieces.

And now with Obama, the IRS has become the 'Mel' character in Scarface.

Account created: 2013-07-18 05:05:26

No way this is a new troll account.


I dunno.  Seems pretty new.
 
2013-07-25 05:18:18 PM
Anybody here ever heard of version control wrt software programming? I think that would be a great requirement for people who write these bills.
 
2013-07-25 05:19:00 PM

DarwiOdrade: GoldSpider: Albino Squid: Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.

Term limits only exacerbate the problem. If you know that you're out in X years, forwarding the interests of your constituents is totally irrelevant; you're just there to audition for a private-sector job. .

Because they aren't doing that without term limits?


Here's an idea. At the end of each term, we should automatically put each congresscritter on trial by a jury of his/her constituents with the only charge being failure to represent their interests, and stoning as the only penalty.
 
2013-07-25 05:25:47 PM

neversubmit: DarwiOdrade: GoldSpider: Albino Squid: Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.

Term limits only exacerbate the problem. If you know that you're out in X years, forwarding the interests of your constituents is totally irrelevant; you're just there to audition for a private-sector job. .

Because they aren't doing that without term limits?

Here's an idea. At the end of each term, we should automatically put each congresscritter on trial by a jury of his/her constituents with the only charge being failure to represent their interests, and stoning as the only penalty.


That is a stoopid idea.  That would only work in CA and CO.
 
2013-07-25 05:27:45 PM
Deeming the submissions confidential, the Senate's top tax writers have said only certain staff members - 10 in all - will get direct access to a senator's written suggestions. Each submission will also be given its own ID number and be kept on password-protected servers, with printed versions kept in locked safes.

Copies will be sent to the NSA who will hand them off to a consulting firm to monitor that will in turn forward them to the first high school drop-out they can find that is traveling east.
 
2013-07-25 05:29:54 PM

GoldSpider: Albino Squid: Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.

Term limits only exacerbate the problem. If you know that you're out in X years, forwarding the interests of your constituents is totally irrelevant; you're just there to audition for a private-sector job. .

Because they aren't doing that without term limits?


They certainly do, because for those that care about such things in the current system, reelection is all about raising enough money. You're doing the same thing, but for different reasons.

What really needs to happen is the removal of governance by donation cheque; incumbents who don't have the luxury of outspending their opponent 10:1 tend to be somewhat less likely to burn the place down, because they want to be there for a few years.
 
2013-07-25 05:32:01 PM

nmrsnr: If you want honest debate and compromise, this is the only way you can do it. This way a Republican can say "I'm willing to increase the marginal rates on corporations" and a Democrat can say "I'm willing to extend the exemptions on estate taxes" and in public lay the blame for such things appearing in the final bill on the other side. If you have it all in the open both sides are stuck saying "I won't move an inch, I stand on principal" because otherwise they'll be skewered by their constituents and facing a primary challenge come reelection.


If that's true then we have much bigger issues in this country then the tax code.
 
2013-07-25 05:45:24 PM
We could just get rid of elections altogether and pick our representatives by drawing names from a hat. You'd get an even more accurate representation of popular will and there's no way to bribe anyone without literally bribing them and maybe getting caught.
 
2013-07-25 05:47:46 PM

Ned Stark: pick our representatives by drawing names from a hat. You'd get an even more accurate representation of popular will


Dafuq?
 
2013-07-25 05:47:56 PM

neversubmit: DarwiOdrade: GoldSpider: Albino Squid: Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.

Term limits only exacerbate the problem. If you know that you're out in X years, forwarding the interests of your constituents is totally irrelevant; you're just there to audition for a private-sector job. .

Because they aren't doing that without term limits?

Here's an idea. At the end of each term, we should automatically put each congresscritter on trial by a jury of his/her constituents with the only charge being failure to represent their interests, and stoning as the only penalty.


Sounds like an even more powerful incentive to go crazy bringing home the pork.
 
2013-07-25 05:53:51 PM

BMFPitt: neversubmit: DarwiOdrade: GoldSpider: Albino Squid: Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.

Term limits only exacerbate the problem. If you know that you're out in X years, forwarding the interests of your constituents is totally irrelevant; you're just there to audition for a private-sector job. .

Because they aren't doing that without term limits?

Here's an idea. At the end of each term, we should automatically put each congresscritter on trial by a jury of his/her constituents with the only charge being failure to represent their interests, and stoning as the only penalty.

Sounds like an even more powerful incentive to go crazy bringing home the pork.


Tack on a balanced budget amendment.
 
2013-07-25 05:56:33 PM

nmrsnr: If you want honest debate and compromise, this is the only way you can do it. This way a Republican can say "I'm willing to increase the marginal rates on corporations" and a Democrat can say "I'm willing to extend the exemptions on estate taxes" and in public lay the blame for such things appearing in the final bill on the other side. If you have it all in the open both sides are stuck saying "I won't move an inch, I stand on principal" because otherwise they'll be skewered by their constituents and facing a primary challenge come reelection.


This is tax code, not national defense secrets.  fark these assholes.  Why don't they start doing the job they are paid to do, which is to show courage for the good of the country.

Seriously, I can't imagine why any voter would find this behavior acceptable.
 
2013-07-25 06:02:09 PM

qorkfiend: Ned Stark: pick our representatives by drawing names from a hat. You'd get an even more accurate representation of popular will

Dafuq?


With an appropriately sized legislative body (about 3000) you will get a mix of opinions matching the total population almost perfectly as long as your selection is sufficiently random.

Even with a smaller and therefore mire flawed sample you'll beat the pants off the actually existing system of fptp districts.
 
2013-07-25 06:08:15 PM
upload.wikimedia.org
There is precedent here.
 
2013-07-25 06:08:38 PM
i DNRTFA but i cant possibly believe this is a truthful headline. Nope, i just cant.
 
2013-07-25 06:13:02 PM

DarwiOdrade: way south: It would keep the same people from still being in power 50 years from now.

But it wouldn't stop them from making secret suggestions about the tax code, and it wouldn't tell us who made which suggestions. I'm not saying term limits are bad, but they're completely irrelevant to this problem.




Its relevant to how we got here and where we're going.
The longer a politician stays in power, the better he gets at the business, the more authority he tends to wield and the result is a greater overreach and abuse of his seat. Lobbyist go to him because of his influence and the overall effect snowballs.
They never have to account for past sins and any newcomer trying to introduce themselves is at a disadvantage for both money and notoriety.

The result is politicians can sponsor bad ideas like this, which lets them sponsors future bad ideas in secrecy, and never once fear being replaced.

If the pattern keeps up then the outrages we see today wont have anything on what's to come.
Put a stop to it now and maybe we stand a chance later on.

/at the very least they deserve a collective whap on the head from the general publics rolled up newspaper.
 
2013-07-25 07:22:31 PM

Headso: wtf? Why not make everything secret, that way they can never be held accountable for anything


when was the last time these turds were held accountable for anything?
 
2013-07-25 07:38:44 PM
Is there any question why these guys support the Patriot Act.  Paging Edward Snowden.  You're needed on Capitol Hill.
 
2013-07-25 07:39:43 PM

Dancin_In_Anson: Term limits.

Now.


You only mean that about Obama and the Senate Majority. No one was happier about "permanent Republican Majority" than you.
 
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