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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Elizabeth Warren for President (In 2016)

Posted by on Wed, Sep 21, 2011 at 4:34 PM

Holy fucking shit: here's a Democrat who can win a fucking argument:

Former White House financial reform adviser Elizabeth Warren, who is now running to challenge Republican Sen. Scott Brown in Massachusetts, is turning out to be one Democrat who is not shying away from the Republican cries of “class warfare” against President Obama’s proposals to raise taxes on those with very high incomes... In a video of a recent Warren appearance, posted online by an individual who says he or she is not affiliated with the campaign, Warren answered the charge. “I hear all this, you know, ‘Well, this is class warfare, this is whatever,’” Warren said. “No. There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own—nobody.

“You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police-forces and fire-forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory—and hire someone to protect against this—because of the work the rest of us did. Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea. God bless—keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is, you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.”

We need this woman in the U.S. Senate. You can help to send her there. I just sent some dough her way. Watch the video. Donate.


Comments (70) RSS

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Enigma 1
She's a badass, and I hope her getting into the Senate doesn't take away that firebrand personality.
I'll proudly donate to her campaign.
Posted by Enigma on September 21, 2011 at 4:40 PM · Report this
Elizabeth Warren is the smartest person in the room right now. She has consistently (and calmly) elucidated her very sensible points in every interview I've ever seen. This is very exciting!
Posted by barfy cute on September 21, 2011 at 4:41 PM · Report this
biffp 3
Finally, a Democrat with some fucking brains and balls. I am donating.
Posted by biffp on September 21, 2011 at 4:44 PM · Report this
If she voices opposition to the regular, violent killing of poor people in third world countries as a necessary means of increasing U.S. security, I'd be happy to support her.
Posted by LJM on September 21, 2011 at 4:44 PM · Report this
Fifty-Two-Eighty 5
Wow. I'm impressed.
Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty on September 21, 2011 at 4:44 PM · Report this
Isn't she running for office in 2012? I would be delighted to help her campaign
Posted by TechBear on September 21, 2011 at 4:51 PM · Report this
pissy mcslogbot 7
I'd venture no one running for any office works harder, and has a better/more grounded and sensible POV than her.
Posted by pissy mcslogbot on September 21, 2011 at 4:52 PM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 8
There are lots of other Democrats who make the same points. It's just that none of them ever get elected to anything.

That doesn't mean making those points that way makes a Democrat unelectable. It's just a correlation... something to think over maybe.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn on September 21, 2011 at 4:53 PM · Report this
darthvegan 9
There. Was that so goddamn hard to say?
Posted by darthvegan on September 21, 2011 at 4:54 PM · Report this
I Hate Screen Names 10
I heard her lecture once on how out-of-control education costs are both dissolving the middle class and threatening any reasonable chance of class advancement. I came out sold.

She has an uncanny ability to grasp complex issues and reduce them to common-sense points you can absorb in a few minutes.
Posted by I Hate Screen Names on September 21, 2011 at 4:56 PM · Report this
Dooooonated. Thank you for highlighting this.
Posted by gloomy gus on September 21, 2011 at 4:58 PM · Report this
MasMadness 12
Fuck and yes. Glad you posted this on payday.
Posted by MasMadness on September 21, 2011 at 4:58 PM · Report this
Cato the Younger Younger 13
Made my donation.
Posted by Cato the Younger Younger on September 21, 2011 at 5:02 PM · Report this
Zebes 14
For big business, success is privatized, failure is socialized. Of course they're going to piggyback on the opportunities the country as a whole affords and then hoard the profits to themselves. Good on Elizabeth Warren for being willing to correct their outlook.
Posted by Zebes on September 21, 2011 at 5:04 PM · Report this
OuterCow 15
Fuck that, Dan. I'm still writing her in for president in 2012. Now is not the time for patience.
Posted by OuterCow on September 21, 2011 at 5:05 PM · Report this
Fifty-Two-Eighty 16
@6: Pay attention. There will be a pop quiz later.
Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty on September 21, 2011 at 5:06 PM · Report this
MacCrocodile 17
Elizabeth Warren/Barney Frank 2016?

Imagine the debates! Such sass! Such guff refusal!
Posted by MacCrocodile on September 21, 2011 at 5:08 PM · Report this
She is such a strong leader. We need someone like this.
Getting off-topic here, but where is your post over the death of Jamey Rodemeyer? His "It gets better." post was gut wrenching, particularly since he still committed suicide. Will we hear from you about this, soon? Your thoughts? I am beyond words, but thought since it was your project, you would share your feelings?
Posted by davidgc on September 21, 2011 at 5:10 PM · Report this
I'm so psyched to volunteer for her campaign! Like 12yo going to see Justin Bieber psyched. That's the first sincere exclamation point I've used in months.
Posted by colinrichardson on September 21, 2011 at 5:15 PM · Report this
@18: I wrote about Jamey yesterday—and I'm utterly heartbroken by his death.…
Posted by Dan Savage on September 21, 2011 at 5:19 PM · Report this
And I just realized her announcement last week finally gave me a reason to be glad Obama chickened out of appointing her Consumer Czar.
Posted by gloomy gus on September 21, 2011 at 5:20 PM · Report this
Looking For a Better Read 25
She's spot-on. There is no such thing as the "self-made man" - if you make something, you move it on public infrastructure; if you employ people, you are benefiting from a public education system. If you can walk out of your home (serviced by public utilities) to go to your job without getting robbed, mugged, or killed, you benefit from the protection provided by public employees.

You did not do all of these things by your very own lonesome self.
Posted by Looking For a Better Read on September 21, 2011 at 5:34 PM · Report this
@21 Me, too.

I was initially disappointed in Kirsten Gillibrand's appointment, see seemed so middle-of-the-road. I have never been so happy to have been wrong. 's appointment, but I was so wrong.

I was so disappointed when Warren wasn't appointed Consumer Protection chair, but, hey having an actual Senator on our side next to Bernnie Sanders? Seriously, how cool is that?
Posted by Jacques on September 21, 2011 at 5:36 PM · Report this
A financial adviser during the Obama Years?

That's like being an infantry adviser to the French during the Battle of Waterloo.
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe http://_ on September 21, 2011 at 5:38 PM · Report this
Tingleyfeeln 29
Mr. President, you should bring this woman on as your running mate in the next election. She can't be any worse for your chances than Biden.
Posted by Tingleyfeeln on September 21, 2011 at 5:54 PM · Report this
pissy mcslogbot 30
she is so dangerous to the GOP, they blocked the agency she was to lead because it w/ her at the head would have brought real reform, it was blocked vehemently because they knew she is the real deal. her in that seat in the Senate, while not the same is still a pretty strong hand.
Posted by pissy mcslogbot on September 21, 2011 at 5:57 PM · Report this
she's got the long & short of it. i have serious doubts about her future in the democratic party, though. maybe her name is big enough to protect her, but w/ views like that she will be marked for destruction by the democratic establishment.
Posted by philosophy school dropout on September 21, 2011 at 6:02 PM · Report this
Love her. Wish I could donate to her campaign. My parents are American and unless they change the rules before the time comes, when she announces her campaign for President 2016, I will apply for my U.S. citizenship so I can vote for her.
Posted by ignatz ratzkywatzky on September 21, 2011 at 6:16 PM · Report this
Fuck. Yeah.
Posted by drcme on September 21, 2011 at 6:18 PM · Report this
Actually, I want her on the Supreme Court where she can affect things for the next 20 years or so. President would be fine as a second choice I guess.
Posted by Learned Hand on September 21, 2011 at 6:34 PM · Report this
Can we clone her so that she can just use those smarts for the power of good everywhere?
Posted by fotoeve on September 21, 2011 at 6:55 PM · Report this
How has this not been getting said CONSTANTLY for the last (feels like thousand years) that we've been listening to the Grand Old Pukes blathering on with their sosh'lizm, sosh'lizm hysteria.
Posted by Racing Turtles on September 21, 2011 at 8:17 PM · Report this
Roma 38
Very impressive.
Posted by Roma on September 21, 2011 at 8:25 PM · Report this
MichaelPgh 39
Team Obama -- especially Little Timmy Geithner -- has tried to stifle and stonewall her every inch of the way, which shows that not only do they not like her, they're afraid of her.
Posted by MichaelPgh on September 21, 2011 at 8:46 PM · Report this
venomlash 40
@28: "you use teen suicides like Fatah straps bomb vests on children."
Funny, that. Fatah renounced terrorism in 1988 and is not considered a terrorist organization by ANY government, including the Israelis. Shows what you know!
Posted by venomlash on September 21, 2011 at 8:56 PM · Report this
Make that 2012
Posted by jeffy on September 21, 2011 at 10:43 PM · Report this
Actually, after listening to her, she sounds angry and shrill, unlike Hillary who has a much better persona.
Posted by jeffy on September 21, 2011 at 10:47 PM · Report this
Catalina Vel-DuRay 43
Jeffy, as Barbara and Neil pointed out in their iconic ballad: "used to be's don't count anymore. They just lie on the floor 'til we sweep them away."
Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay on September 21, 2011 at 11:02 PM · Report this
Hillary has enhanced her resume. She would be a great contender
Posted by jeffy on September 21, 2011 at 11:08 PM · Report this
I remember when I first saw her, in the depths of the economic free-fall, she came on the Daily Show. She calmly explained these terrifying and difficult topics in a way even my economically-illiterate self could understand. Things were just as bad when the interview was over, but at least I felt I understood the situation.

I'm pretty short on cash right about now, but I'll scrape together whatever I can to get her to the Senate. It would be criminal to finally get the candidate we want and not give it our all.
Posted by Lynx on September 22, 2011 at 3:00 AM · Report this
luke1249 46
Win a straw argument, maybe. Nobody is arguing the things she's arguing against.

This lady is a partisan attack dog at heart.
Posted by luke1249 on September 22, 2011 at 4:44 AM · Report this
@21: I'm not glad about it. I'd actually rather see her as Consumer Czar, where she could actually get things done, than as a senator.
Posted by BlackRose on September 22, 2011 at 4:50 AM · Report this
Elizabeth Warren may be too intelligent and too honorable to have a future in American politics. I'd vote for her today if I could.
Posted by Purple Patriot on September 22, 2011 at 5:13 AM · Report this
Elizabeth Warren, bless her, is the only Democrat on the national scene who can make a clear, coherent and effective argument for Democratic beliefs. I hope she isn't too intelligent and too honorable to have a future in American politics.
Posted by Purple Patriot on September 22, 2011 at 5:18 AM · Report this
Danger 51
One of the few good things about living in Mass is the opportunity to vote for her. After the Coakley fiasco I think she has a real chance.
Posted by Danger on September 22, 2011 at 5:47 AM · Report this
@49, Al Franken is actually quite capable as well, he just doesn't do it so much because he's keeping his head down and doing great work.

Generally, I love her, but I am cynical about her ability to maintain these principles and fire once she gets to Washington. But Franken has, thus far, and if she can hold onto them for even a few years she might help alter the debate.
Posted by Ancient Sumerian on September 22, 2011 at 5:54 AM · Report this
@42 - "angry and shrill" ? I hope so. It's time someone in the Democratic Party got angry and shrill and SMART and used Republican's asshole tactics against them.

I love this woman. I donated my scarce cash in the hopes she'll be in a position to help everyone in this country.
Posted by Bugnroolet on September 22, 2011 at 6:18 AM · Report this
luke1249 54
How is this woman smart again?

She doesn't even know what the other side's actual arguments are.
Posted by luke1249 on September 22, 2011 at 6:42 AM · Report this
@54 What are the other side's arguments again?
Posted by Ken Mehlman on September 22, 2011 at 7:16 AM · Report this
Fifty-Two-Eighty 56
Tax cuts for the rich, of course.
Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty on September 22, 2011 at 7:29 AM · Report this
luke1249 57
@55 Fair question. You wouldn't know it from Warren's telling of it.

Their argument in this context is cutting taxes and cutting spending.

NB: Not abolishing taxes/govt/public roads or whatever other populist bullshit she's spewing.

Do you think any rich person in the US today thinks we should stop paying for, say, road construction through taxes? No. If there are any, their numbers are so small that they are as relevant to the discussion as truthers are to a discussion of foreign policy.

And we wonder what's wrong with the country. It's so stupid. Dan "I Wish Republicans Were All Dead" Savage didn't post this because he thinks she's smart. There's lots of economists with PhDs out there who are way smarter than Warren. He posted this because Warren is using fightin' words, and it makes him feel good, because we gotsta demolish the other team so our team can win GO TEAM GO YAY!!!

That's the level of political discourse in the video.
Posted by luke1249 on September 22, 2011 at 7:46 AM · Report this
Farbe 58
If you are not "angry and shrill" by now you are dead from the ass in both directions.
Posted by Farbe on September 22, 2011 at 7:49 AM · Report this
Living in Massachusetts at the time, seeing Ted Kennedy's Senate seat go to a putz like Scott Brown was heartbreaking. Seeing Elizabeth Warren winning it back would be supremely vindicating.
Posted by newjim on September 22, 2011 at 8:05 AM · Report this
@57 Sure, but one of the arguments the Republicans make for why rich people should be taxed at lower rate than the rest of us is "I made this money all by myself, the government never gave me anything, so I don't owe the government anything!" Elizabeth Warren is calling bullshit on that line of reasoning by pointing out that successful businessmen are just as dependent on government services as the rest of us.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on September 22, 2011 at 8:08 AM · Report this
So, just a question: How is paying a higher percentage tax rate and significantly more in actual dollars in taxes not paying your fair share? If you really think we need to commit more community dollars to these "essential/local" government services then do so at the property tax level. That way these dollars get allocated directly to the communities that need them. Is it fair for Seattle to pay for extra police in a small town in Iowa, especially if the reason that town cannot afford more police is a declining number of residents?

And to be even more to the point, those paying the highest income tax rates are often paying a shitload of the property taxes (these taxes pay for your schools, roads and marauding-mob-preventing-police, not federal income taxes). Also, to make a joke at her expense, do you really think the government is doing a great job of educating workers? When was the last time you spoke to someone at a large corporate call center or other mass-employment job and you thought they sounded "bright"? Jesus, if this were a service that I was paying for in the market I would have cancelled my subscription long ago.

To be direct, Dan I am sort of embarrassed for you. This is not a politician that can win an argument, the premise upon which her argument rests is like a swiss-cheese of logic. If you're swayed by this sort of populist rhetoric you should be in a tent down south here, communing with the evangelicals. I am not against raising revenue, the US needs additional dollars in the coffers in a bad way. But here is a question for the comment board and for politicians, "What about that percentage of our population that uses government services and pays absolutely nothing for them? Zero? Not-a-fucking-dime? No co-pay? No accounting for which services they use?"

When is it fair for our country to collectively have expectations for them?

And when do we start having intelligent discussions about taxation? Like why do we have such a complicated system? Why not have VAT or a flat tax? Or how about stopping our two wars and actually negotiating a prescription drug deal for medi-care? (These are actually great ideas of hers) But please call a logical spade a spade; there are no grounds for calling her the second coming of logic and prudence, she just doesn't warrant it.
Posted by trejas on September 22, 2011 at 9:02 AM · Report this
The teabaggy comments on the YouTube page are straight out of bizarro world. Defunct, unsupportable and illogical arguments. Maybe it's a positive sign that the 'baggers are all frantic, desperate and shrill now, knowing they're starting to lose this argument. Trying to overwhelm the positive comments on Warren's video is their latest propaganda tactic.
Posted by Brooklyn Reader on September 22, 2011 at 9:19 AM · Report this
@61 Rich people often end up paying a smaller proportion of their income in taxes because of the social security cap and because investment income is taxed at a lower rate. Many people don't pay federal income tax, but they pay other taxes. Social security and Medicare come out of their paycheck and they pay sales tax and various excise taxes.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on September 22, 2011 at 9:36 AM · Report this
@61 Flat taxes, VAT, sales taxes, and property taxes are all essentially regressive. They're regressive because they take a higher percentage of discretionary income from the poor than they do from the rich. Economies rise or fall on the basis of economic activity. Where the Republican talking points logically collapse is when they confuse economic activity with wealth. Economic activity generates wealth, not vice versa. Wealth itself does not generate economic activity. Investing, per se, is not economic activity. (For example, the direct economic activity associated with stashing a million dollars in gold is a pittance, about $4000 per year, which is the 0.4% cost of storage and insurance, a tiny fraction of even what that amount would be worth to a bank loaning it to a business needing to expand.)

A regressive tax inhibits economic activity, as it takes discretionary income out of the hands of consumers at the bottom of the pile. On the other hand, a progressive tax, such as an income tax with increasing marginal rates, preserves discretionary income which will enter commerce, while siphoning off a portion of wealth at the higher end of the scale which would otherwise end up in static hoards, thereby maximizing economic activity.

Progressive taxes are no bar to getting rich. You just have to participate in more economic activity, a win-win all around.
Posted by Brooklyn Reader on September 22, 2011 at 9:43 AM · Report this
@63 True, there are different types of taxes and because of the cap on social sec and medicare those at higher income levels might pay a smaller proportion of their NET income. But the vast majority of those payers use zero of those particular government services, but still pay into them. And to the second part of your comment I agree, those who don't pay as much in social sec and medicare often pay exponentially more in various other forms of tax. So I'm not sure if you are making an argument for or against the video.

@64 Agreed VAT, sales and property taxes are all regressive and indeed these do pull a higher percentage of discretionary income. But unfortunately the process of progressive taxation does not efficiently redistribute those "siphoned" funds. More to the point the idea of "siphoning" funds to give someone else a credit for taxes they never even paid is just a redistribution of wealth, punitive and, more importantly, a definite incentive for finding tax loopholes.

A regressive tax does not inhibit economic activity, Europe is case in point (although it is faltering now, many EU nations have had VAT based taxation systems for quite some time.) Also, the idea that funds would otherwise end up in static hoards is just plain false. Even money sitting in bank checking accounts is being re-loaned to generate economic activity. These aren't static hoards, they are pools of capital, hopefully being stewarded into investments that will grow our economy over time. A static hoard will be eroded over time by inflation, taxes and usually lifestyle usage. The idea that the rich are out there swimming in pools of their own, unused money is just goofy. It's not true and isn't the way this works.

True, progressive taxes are no bar to getting rich, my comment about simplification of the tax code is more about reducing economic friction within companies. We spend so much time prepping taxes that could be spent generating more economic activity. I'm really quite fine with any system that removes these complications, perhaps a sliding scale VAT or flat tax (without the deductions, etc.)
Posted by trejas on September 22, 2011 at 11:11 AM · Report this
Your roads are crap because money's going to Solyndra instead, your workers aren't worth minimum wage because the teachers union has ruined the public schools, the six figure police and fire departments have sucked any remaining dollars out of the municipalities, the fucking EPA wants to regulate anything and everything related to making a product, and if they don't get you, OSHA will.

And yet you want a job? Good fucking luck.

I'm a small business owner and I work harder and make less money than a Metro bus driver. So fuck that elitist Warren and the rest of her statist bullshit spewing apparatchiks.
Posted by delbert on September 22, 2011 at 11:39 AM · Report this
venomlash 67
@66: Ah, I see Solyndra is the new ACORN as a right-wing meme.
Seeing as you are the owner of your small business, but your business is not successful, you must not be doing a very good job. That's the free market at work, eh?
Posted by venomlash on September 22, 2011 at 11:53 AM · Report this

No, the business turns a profit. There's only so many contracts a small shop can take and unlike bus drivers, I have to compete for my money. I just hired a new employee to expand the business. I did make sure the new guy had his head on straight, he's not a Democrat.
Posted by delbert on September 22, 2011 at 12:42 PM · Report this
John Horstman 69
The best part? Even unemployed people who are paying nothing in income taxes (still pay sales taxes, service taxes, etc. though generally minimally) and contributing no labor to the public or other individuals are helping business owners profit. How? Simply by existing and not having a job: having a (potential) labor supply greater than the demand lowers the market price for labor, which means business owners can pay employees less for the same work and make more profit (this is also part of the reason that undocumented workers, who typically work for less than minimum wage, help even business owners who do not hire them profit more).
Posted by John Horstman on September 22, 2011 at 12:50 PM · Report this

You fucking idiot. What part of "compete" did you miss? I can't simply keep the money, I have to give the customer the best price or I don't get the work.
Posted by delbert on September 22, 2011 at 1:15 PM · Report this
venomlash 71
@68: Bus drivers don't have to compete?
Posted by venomlash on September 22, 2011 at 1:57 PM · Report this
@61, 64: Either way, there's no question that we should not have such a complicated system. We should get rid of all tax deductions and credits. There's no excuse for them.
Posted by BlackRose on September 23, 2011 at 4:00 AM · Report this
@73 I think there are good reasons for many types of tax deductions and credits. A complicated economy requires a complex tax code.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on September 23, 2011 at 6:17 AM · Report this
RavingLibertarian 75
Here's how to translate Warren's speech into American English:

"The government provided the roads, police protection and education for your workers so the government owns everything­. We're just being nice and letting you keep a part of what your hard work produced." ~Elizabeth "Red Herring" Warren
Posted by RavingLibertarian on September 23, 2011 at 11:45 AM · Report this
@75 Simpler English: "If you want to be an American, the price of admission is agreeing to be taxed to support America."
Posted by Brooklyn Reader on September 24, 2011 at 5:37 AM · Report this
@74: There might be good reasons for the government to reward mortgages, education, help pay for health care, and so on. But that should be done separately. The tax deductions and credits are just there to encourage people to do something or to provide social welfare, and it would be much simpler to do that with a separate program, instead of messing up the tax system.
Posted by BlackRose on September 24, 2011 at 6:26 PM · Report this

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