Posts Tagged ‘Herman Cain’

Are the media out to wreck Herman Cain’s candidacy? No, he’s doing it to himself, quite effectively

November 2, 2011

The conservative media and some Republican politicians are accusing the mainstream (translation: liberal and biased) media of smearing Herman Cain by publishing, then blabbering continuously about, allegations of sexual harassment of subordinate employees when Cain headed the National Restaurant Association back in the 1990s.

Cain’s campaign early today called it an “appalling smear” by “inside-the-beltway media.” Later today the Cain campaign accused the Rick Perry campaign of tipping the story when Cain chief of staff Mark Block told Fox, “Rick Perry needs to apologize to Herman Cain and, quite frankly, to America.”

Cain has only himself to blame for the vultures circling overhead. His story has changed—materially—every day, and more than once most days. First he denied ever being accused of sexual harassment. Then he acknowledged that there had been a complaint but he turned it over to the association that he headed and he didn’t think anything had come of it. Then he said there had been no settlement paid to his accuser(s). Then he said, wait a minute I thought there had been an agreement, not a settlement.

It’s hard to keep up with the story, but a few facts are beyond dispute:

  • Two complaints of sexual harassment were filed against Cain.
  • The National Restaurant Association paid off the accusers in exchange for their silence.
  • Cain first denied any such complaints had ever been made.
  • Cain’s story has changed daily.

The original story in Politico would have been a one-day item. Cain’s serial lying has turned it into a media circus that may well destroy his campaign, and deservedly so.

Here’s an innovative idea from Herman Cain: 999, or crush the working poor

October 17, 2011

Herman Cain has a plan for America’s tax system: junk the federal income tax and payroll tax, and substitute his 999 system, in which everybody pays 9% federal income tax and 9% federal sales tax, and corporations pay a 9% income tax.

Elegant in its simplicity. But a crusher for the working poor, who now pay 8% in payroll (Social Security and Medicare) taxes, but get a substantial credit via the earned income tax credit, or EITC.

Here’s how a single mother of two earning the California minimum wage of $8 an hour would fare under the 2011 tax structure and under Cain’s 999 plan.

                                                                        2011 actual                Cain 999

Earned income                                             $16,000                     $16,000

    Less taxes:

               Federal payroll tax                               900                            -0-

               Federal income tax                               -0-                           1,440

               Federal sales tax                                   -0-                            1,440

               State/local taxes                                  1,600                       1,600

               Subtotal taxes paid                             2,520                        4,480

 

Net income before EITC*                           $13,480                      $11,520

EITC                                                                   4,800                                   -0-  

Net income                                                     18,280                         11,520

 

So under Cain’s plan her actual taxes paid increase by 77%  ($2520 to $4,480), and she loses the EITC of $4,800. Her net income is slashed by 37% ($18,280 to $11,520).

What does it say about the media and about Cain’s competitors for the Republican nomination that they let this barbarism go unremarked?

_______________

*Earned Income Tax Credit. Cain’s plan abolishes (“simplifies”) it.

George W. Bush’s finest hours: his embrace of Islam and of American Muslims. We need that now from Republicans

August 28, 2011

Six days after the 9/11 attack on the United States, President George W. Bush went to the Islamic Center of Washington to publicly embrace Islam and, especially, American Muslims. He led Americans away from any idea of blaming Islam for the horror of 9/11.  He repeated that theme over and over, making it a part of his second inaugural address, and returning to the Islamic Center for its rededication in 2007.

Bush’s healing message stands sadly in contrast to the ugly anti-Muslim rhetoric we hear lately from so many prominent Republicans, notably Newt Gingrich, Eric Cantor, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Peter King, and Frank Gaffney. To their credit Mitt Romney and Rick Perry have not joined in, but neither have they been very vocal in rejection of Islamophobia.

Ethics Bob never thought he’d be missing George Bush’s leadership, but on this issue he surely does. Bush’s statements are worth reading:

September 17, 2001, at the Islamic Center of Washington (complete remarks):

“Thank you all very much for your hospitality. We’ve just had a—wide-ranging discussions on the matter at hand. Like the good folks standing with me, the American people were appalled and outraged at last Tuesday’s attacks. And so were Muslims all across the world. Both Americans, our Muslim friends and citizens, taxpaying citizens, and Muslims in nations were just appalled and could not believe what we saw on our TV screens.

“These acts of violence against innocents violate the fundamental tenets of the Islamic faith. And it’s important for my fellow Americans to understand that. (more…)

Hooray for Romney and Paul for eschewing the politics of discrimination and hatred against Muslims and gays at the GOP debate

June 15, 2011

It feels awkward to praise in an ethics column somebody for showing simple decency, but considering today’s Republican candidates, simple decency is nothing to sneeze at.

So hooray for Mitt Romney for standing up for the rights of American Muslims. Romney dismissed the idea that Sharia law could ever be applied in American courts (“We have a Constitution”), and rejected Herman Cain’s position that Muslims should be singled out and treated differently (“We treat people with respect regardless of their religious persuasion.”)

By contrast, Cain and Newt Gingrich made it clear that they would be very reluctant to have any Muslims serve under them. The other participants, Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, and Ron Paul didn’t comment in the debate.

Bachmann has in the past shown suspicion toward American Muslims, while Santorum has stated that he considers Muslims to be as good American citizens as anybody. Paul has been downright heroic on this issue, blasting those in the conservative movement who use “hatred against Muslims to rally support.”

On another subject Paul earned praise from Ethics Alarms for his ethical and libertarian position on the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. He was the only candidate to reject the policy.


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