AFOP

Yesterday, seeing AFOP up around $12.80, I suggested selling half. No harm: no one ever went broke taking 60% gains. But it turns out that Chris thinks the risk/reward ratio remains good here and has sold very little for his fund, so I may have jumped the gun. Hope so. (I still own the other half.)

THE CHART

Several of you sent me this chart. The Republican / Tea Party narrative is that we are wildly, oppressively overtaxed. Yet Federal tax collections, relative to GDP, are the lowest in 60 years. It’s our parents who paid a lot of taxes – yet, in so doing, kept the Federal budget pretty close to balance (and still managed, for the most part, to have pretty good lives).

THE PRESIDENT’S PRESS CONFERENCE

As you could tell from yesterday’s column, ‘the compromise’ left me seriously glum.

A day later, I still hate the choice the Republicans forced on us. It would be so much better if we stimulated the economy and created jobs by borrowing to make our country more efficient and competitive (via projects carried out largely by private industry like our dredging company) . . . rather than borrowing to extend tax cuts for the best off.

The Republican who pushed through the Interstate Highway System, Dwight Eisenhower, could never have made it in today’s Republican Party.

So I hated the choice we were handed: play brinksmanship with the economy and struggling families or add 1% to the already out-of-control National Debt in order to give the best off another two years of unnecessary tax cuts. And I’m not certain we made the right choice. (Anyone who is certain I think underestimates the difficulty of the decision.) Neither am I too crazy about borrowing to cut 2% out of the payroll tax when the deficit is so large. As I say, I think there are better ways to stimulate the economy. So I would love to see the deal improved.

But all that said, I feel better having watched the President’s press conference – especially his last answer.

I hope you will find time to watch or read it, too.

 

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