Erm, Johann?

When Obama set us all up for environmental disaster by refusing to put the brakes on his country’s unprecedented and unmatched emissions of climate-destabilizing gases, we switched over to watch’s YouTube rejig of the President’s “yes, we can” speech. And when a week from now he is beaten at the mid-term elections –

Umm, Obama isn\’t running. You see, he\’s President, and \”mid-term elections\” means the election held in the middle of the President\’s term. You know, that even numbered year when there is no Presidential election?

And they rake in a fortune from the reality that 44 percent of the entire federal budget is spent on a largely unnecessary war machine




His huge government bailout of the auto industry kept millions of people in work, was hugely popular – and is already making a profit for the government.

That\’s interesting:

The federal government spent roughly $86 billion in taxpayer money to bail out the auto industry. That\’s a lot of Monopoly money, folks, and when the industry we know and love was at its weakest point, early projections suggested that that the U.S. government and American taxpayers would never see $30 billion of that money. But as the economy slowly crawls back to life and cars and trucks are beginning to move with greater regularity, those forecasts are being adjusted downward.

A few months ago the Treasury Department proclaimed that the industry could, if everything fell just so, lose only $8 billion by the time the dust settles. We\’re now in October, and according to The Detroit News, the DoT is settling on a loss that looks a lot like $17 billion.

Now it\’s true that the bank bailout looks like making a profit (as long as we ignore AIG, the car companies\’ finance arms and Fannie and Freddie) but that wouldn\’t quite fit the narrative, would it?

And there\’s this as well:

The corporations are getting massive returns on their investment in Obama. Two-thirds of them pay no federal tax on their income.

Oh aye?

Firstly, companies do not pay tax on their income. They pay it on their net income aka profits. Still, why should 66% of US corporations not pay tax on their profits? The original numbers come from here:

Two-thirds of U.S. corporations paid no federal income taxes between 1998 and 2005, according to a new report from Congress.

Hey, maybe Johann\’s got a number right?


An outside tax expert, Chris Edwards of the libertarian Cato Institute in Washington, said increasing numbers of limited liability corporations and so-called \”S\” corporations pay taxes under individual tax codes.

\”Half of all business income in the United States now ends up going through the individual tax code,\” Edwards said.

Oh, right, so 50% of it all is simply because many US companies are actually organised more like our own LLPs. They\’re transparent to tax and so there is no corporation tax (or, in the US, more precisely, corporate income tax) to pay at all. It gets paid as income tax instead.


Joshua Barro, a staff economist at the Tax Foundation, a conservative research group, told The New York Times that the largest corporations represented only 1 percent of the total number of corporations but more than 90 percent of all corporate assets.

The vast majority of the large corporations that did not pay taxes had net losses, he said, and thus no income on which to pay taxes.

Well, yes, that makes sense too. Not all corporations make profits all the time. As GM and Chrylser have shown us. So while his number is correct it is, at the very least, somewhat misleading.

Oh, and as the final icing on the cake, he rails against corporate political donations. Completely failing, even in passing, to note one of the largest political donors in the country:

SEIU\’s budget for the 2010 election year is $44 million, up from $35 million in 2006, according to Jon Youngdahl, SEIU\’s national political director. That\’s the money that the national union will spend on House and Senate races and statewide races such as gubernatorial races.

Probably best to read young Johann for the partisan rhetoric rather than the informational content, eh?

6 thoughts on “Erm, Johann?”

  1. Regarding the 44% spent on defence, I think Johann has got confused with that old favourite of Indie readers, the Soviet Union.

    Do the people who read this shit just swallow it whole? Do they have enough awareness of the world and history to even be slightly sceptical?

  2. Also, what is a “largely unnecessary” war machine? You either need armed forces or you don’t. You can’t have them only on weekends or whistle them into existence when you do suddenly need them.

    His articles are a constant stream of logical fallacies, emotional outbursts and bizarre ‘facts’. Or Progressive Liberalism, in other words.

  3. Probably best to read young Johann for the partisan rhetoric rather than the informational content, eh?

    Personally, I find it better all round not to read him at all.

  4. The auto bailout wasn’t popular either. GM and Chrysler sales have fallen through the floor. Still, since when have facts mattered to someone like Little Johann?

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