Thursday, October 29, 2015

Transcript of GOP presidential debate showcases Carson's economic fantasies and other GOP delusions

This morning the NY Times features the full transcript of the GOP presidential debate from last night (Wed., Oct. 28).

The transcript is long but revealing of the shallowness of these clowns. For example, they were quizzed about their economic plans. Here is the exchange of one of the moderators with Ben Carson.

QUICK: Dr. Carson, let’s talk about taxes. You have a flat tax plan of 10 percent flat taxes, and — I’ve looked at it — and this is something that is very appealing to a lot of voters, but I’ve had a really tough time trying to make the math work on this. If you were to took a 10 percent tax, with the numbers right now in total personal income, you’re gonna come in with bring in $1.5 trillion. That is less than half of what we bring in right now. And by the way, it’s gonna leave us in a $2 trillion hole. So what analysis got you to the point where you think this will work?

CARSON: Well, first of all, I didn’t say that the rate would be 10 percent. I used the tithing analogy.

QUICK: I — I understand that, but if you — if you look at the numbers you probably have to get to 28.

CARSON: The rate — the rate — the rate is gonna be much closer to 15 percent.

QUICK: 15 percent still leaves you with a $1.1 trillion hole.

CARSON: You also have to get rid of all the deductions and all the loopholes. You also have to some strategically cutting in several places. Remember, we have 645 federal agencies and sub-agencies. Anybody who tells me that we need every penny and every one of those is in a fantasy world. So, also, we can stimulate the economy. That’s gonna be the real growth engine. Stimulating the economy — because it’s tethered down right now with so many regulations...

QUICK: You’d have to cut — you’d have to cut government about 40 percent to make it work with a $1.1 trillion hole.

CARSON: That’s not true.

QUICK: That is true, I looked at the numbers.

CARSON: When — when we put all the facts down, you’ll be able to see that it’s not true, it works out very well.

QUICK: Dr. Carson, thank you.

So Carson makes this stuff up - or else his economic advisors are characters from some comic book.

Even though Quick let Carson off in the end another candidate was not inclined to let it pass.

KASICH: ... This stuff is fantasy. Just like getting rid of Medicare and Medicaid. Come on, that’s just not — you scare senior citizens with that. It’s not responsible.

HARWOOD: Well, let’s just get more pointed about it. You said yesterday that you were hearing proposals that were just crazy from your colleagues. Who were you talking about?

KASICH: Well, I mean right here. To talk about we’re just gonna have a 10 percent tithe and that’s how we’re gonna fund the government? And we’re going to just fix everything with waste, fraud, and abuse? Or that we’re just going to be great? Or we’re going to ship 10 million Americans — or 10 million people out of this country, leaving their children here in this country and dividing families?

And, of course, Kasich could not resist making a pitch for himself.

Folks, we’ve got to wake up. We cannot elect somebody that doesn’t know how to do the job. You have got to pick somebody who has experience, somebody that has the know-how, the discipline.

And so went the night.

If you have a lot of time on your hands, you can read the whole transcript here. If you find that daunting, you can take a short cut and read the Times' summary here.

Or, you can skip to the bottom line provided by Bob Lord at Blog for Arizona. For your convenience, his post titled "Did I Just Waste Two Hours?" is reprinted below.

Yes, I sat through the entire Republican debate. [So did your Scriber - what dedication!] At the outset, I said if Bush was smart he’d come out swinging against Carson. He didn’t. He probably pissed away what ever remaining chance he had.

But I digress. There were precious few moments of real impact. I did think Christie blew a big fat dog whistle to every racist in America. And I think Fiorina will sink like a stone after being skewered regarding her time at H-P.

Then there was Rubio. The pundits are saying he did well, but I felt just the opposite. There was one exchange I thought should be seen as devastating, when he gave his canned answer about his financial woes and the questioner followed up by noting that the financial woes came after he made $1 million windfall on a book deal.

Apparently, I’m the only person who saw that as significant. Oh well.

Who won? I’d say Carson. the other candidates were too stupid to go after him, so he gets to keep his momentum.

Kasich tried, but for the most part Carson kept getting off easy.

As one of my heroes used to say "What a bunch of maroons!"

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