By Bill Scher
September 24, 2012 - 7:52am ET
Each morning, Bill Scher and Terrance Heath serve up what progressives need to effect change on the kitchen-table issues families face: jobs, health care, green energy, financial reform, affordable education and retirement security.
MORNING MESSAGE: The Self-Made Myth
Too Much's Sam Pizzigati: "Take, for instance, Mitt’s remark that he has 'inherited nothing.' A variety of commentators have ... pointed out that Mitt, the son of a wealthy corporate CEO, has enjoyed plenty of privilege [including] $1 million worth of stock his father threw his way to tide him over until big paydays started arriving ... Most really deep pockets, not just Mitt, consider themselves entirely 'self-made.' ... Of America’s current 400 richest, gushes Forbes, 70 percent 'made their fortunes entirely from scratch.' ... [But according to United for a Fair Economy,] Forbes is spinning 'a misleading tale of what it takes to become wealthy in America.' Most of the Forbes 400 have benefited from a level of privilege unknown to the vast majority of Americans."
Romney Calls His Tax Rate "Fair"
Obama ad features Romney 47% video. CBS quotes: ""Doesn't the President have to worry about everyone? ... Mitt Romney paid just 14.1% in taxes last year...He keeps millions in Bermuda and the Cayman Islands...He won't release his tax returns before 2010. Maybe instead of attacking others on taxes, Romney should come clean on his."
Romney says he pays a "fair" tax rate on CBS' 60 Minutes. "CBS: you paid 14 percent in federal taxes. That's the capital gains rate. Is that fair to the guy who makes $50,000 and paid a higher rate than you did? Romney: It is a low rate. And one of the reasons why the capital gains tax rate is lower is because capital has already been taxed once at the corporate level, as high as 35 percent. CBS: So you think it is fair? Romney: Yeah, I think it's the right way to encourage economic growth, to get people to invest, to start businesses, to put people to work."
Conservatives say Romney's problem is not enough Ryan. NYT: "On Friday, he appeared at the annual AARP convention and drew boos as he called for repeal of Mr. Obama’s health care law and laid out the approach that he and Mr. Romney would take to address Medicare’s financial troubles, which would encourage more private-sector competition in the government-run program. It was a classic example of what Chris Chocola, president of the conservative political action committee Club for Growth, admiringly called Mr. Ryan’s '"You’re damned right" answer' to critics ... 'The Romney ticket would be well served to let Paul Ryan be Paul Ryan.'"
Republicans arguing that they can fix the economy with "magic" says NYT's Paul Krugman: "Republican leaders have long insisted that the main thing holding the economy back is the 'uncertainty' created by President Obama’s statements — roughly speaking, that businesspeople aren’t investing because Mr. Obama has hurt their feelings ... There is, however, no evidence supporting this dogma. Our protracted economic weakness isn’t a mystery; it’s what normally happens after a major financial crisis. Furthermore, business investment has actually recovered fairly strongly since the official recession ended ... Yet here comes Mitt Romney, declaring, in effect, 'I am the confidence fairy!'"
Conservative governors quietly implement ObamaCare. NYT: "Officials in a handful of ... Republican-led states say they are also working to have a framework ready by Nov. 16, the deadline for states to commit to running an exchange or leave it to the federal government to run it for them ... Peter Lee, the executive director of the insurance exchange in California, said he had attended meetings with officials from red states who were eager to keep their presence under the radar."
Worker riot at major Chinese factory. NYT: "One Foxconn employee reached by telephone Monday afternoon, however, said the disturbance began when workers started brawling with security guards, and eventually led to a huge riot involving more than 1,000 workers ... China’s state-run news media said 5,000 police officers were called in to quell the riot. A Foxconn spokesman declined to specify whether the Taiyuan facility made products for the Apple iPhone 5, which went on sale last week, but he said it supplied goods to many consumer electronics brands."
HuffPost's Robert Kuttner assesses possible replacements for Geithner: "Erskine Bowles. Says he doesn't want the job, but the austerity crowd really wants him ... Bill Daley. The former White House chief of staff and financial fixer would be a total disaster, both on regulatory and on austerity grounds ... Gary Gensler. Head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Yet another alum of Goldman Sachs and the Rubin Treasury. However, Gensler got somewhat radicalized after the crash, and has turned out to be one of the most public-minded regulator ... Sarah Bloom Raskin. Most progressive of the current Federal Reserve board of governors..."
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