The Obama giveth and The Obama taketh away

I’m not big on conspiracy “theories”.  Mostly I think they are for the slow-witted and uninformed.  But today, I’m going to begin one myself.

Coincidence and correlation are not equal.  Unless they are.  Consider the following events, their coincidence and their correlation.

Barack Obama and Michelle Obama

Barack Obama and Michelle Obama (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In December 2010 The Obama reduced the Payroll tax for the following year.  This was said to be a type of “stimulus” to our barely breathing economy.  It added a tiny bit to the paychecks of working Americans.  In case you’re wondering why he didn’t lower Income Tax instead, let me point out that about 50% of the working population pays no Income Tax.  That 50% are heavy supporters of The Obama and an Income Tax reduction would have meant nothing to them since they don’t pay Income Tax.  However, they ALL pay the Payroll Tax so even though they pay no Income Tax the Payroll Tax deduction put a little more money in the pockets of the peeps every week. To most, this was, pretty much,  meaningless at the time and had no discernible effect on the economy.  However, peeps being peeps, they spent every nickel and became accustomed to the slight increase.  This reduction in Payroll Tax came directly out of the already bankrupt Social Security fund.  Even The Obama knew this could not go on long and that is the purported reason it was only for one year.

The timing is not insignificant.  The Payroll Tax went back up the month after the Presidential election.  The peeps got a little money and The Obama won the election.

Now the working peeps are running a little shorter of cash each week.  Walmart (a prime shopping choice of the peeps) reported poor sales in January – the month after the Payroll Tax returned to it’s normal rate.  February is off to the worst start in the last seven years according to Walmart’s Vice President of Finance in an email recently uncovered.  Family Dollar Stores Inc. are bracing for a rise in the payroll tax to take a bigger bite from the paychecks of peeps already dealing with elevated unemployment.

 

Coincidentally The Obama announced in February, during his State of the Union address, the “need” for the Minimum Wage to be raised to $9 per hour.  The Obama has given Hope to the peeps. And Change too, in the form of “pocket change”.  The combination of less money in the pockets of the, already poor, peeps and the Hope for increased wages for the peeps is almost sure to lead to a groundswell of support from the peeps for both The Obama and a rise in the Minimum Wage – regardless of the fact that it will almost certainly deepen the recession – because it will hurt “the rich” and help the peeps.

So what is the conspiracy?  Just this: Revolution.  The Obama knew when he gave the Payroll Tax cut that A), it would be rescinded the month after his election; B) the peeps would fall on harder times as a result of the rescission; C) The Obama would then propose the hike in the Minimum Wage; D) The peeps would see The minimum-wage-raising Obama as their savior; E) The Obama would insure riots in the streets from the no-longer-able-to-shop-for-food-at-Walmart peeps for an increase to the Minimum Wage; and,   F) Congress would be forced to yield to the will of the peeps and The Obama would again have his way.

According to Aristotle,

REVOLUTIONS arise from inequalities, numerical or qualitative–from a numerical mass claiming an equality denied them, or from a minority claiming a superiority denied them. A revolution may result either in a complete change of polity, or only in a modification of the existing one. An oligarchy is less permanent than a democracy, owing to factions within the oligarchical body.

In all revolutions, the conditions which leads up to them is the desire of the many for equality, and the desire of the minority for effective superiority. The purposes with which they are set on foot are profit, honour, or avoidance of loss or dishonour. The inciting occasions are many; jealousy of those who have wealth and honour, official arrogance, fear of the law or of its abuse, personal rivalries, failure of the middle class to maintain a balance, race antagonisms, antagonism of localities, and others.

In democracies, revolutions are due mainly to demagogic attacks on wealth, leading the wealthy of combine, and they result in the establishment of an oligarchy or of a tyranny, a ‘popular’ military chief seizing the power for himself; or sometimes in replacing a moderate by an extreme democracy.

In oligarchies they spring from the oppressive conduct of the oligarchy, or from dissensions among the oligarchical body–e.g. exclusion of those who think themselves entitled to membership; attraction of the role of demagogue for individual members of the oligarchy; employment of mercenary troops, whose captain seizes power.

IN aristocracies they arise from the jealousy of those excluded from power, personal ambitions, great inequality of wealth. In these, and in constitutional governments–the most stable of all–the main cause is the incomplete fusion of the three criteria, wealth, numbers and merit. The comparative stability of constitutions comes from the greater relative weight of numbers. They are, however, more liable to be revolutionised by external pressure. Equality in proportion to merit and security of rights are the true conditions of permanence.

For the preservation of polities, minor illegalities must be particularly guarded against: in oligarchies, personal rivalries, abuse of power by individuals (making short tenures of office advisable), insolence of privilege, tricks to deceive the masses; in oligarchies and constitutional states, excessive concentration of power in individuals or classes; oppression of the wealthy minority in democracies, and of the poor majority in oligarchies.

OF monarchy, the two types are the regal and the tyrannic. The king is the protector of the wealthy against spoliation, of the poor against arrogance. His own or his family’s virtues or services have given him the kingship; his aim is excellence, and his authority is maintained by a citizen bodyguard. The tyrant is not a protector; his aim is his personal gratification.

Under monarchies, injustice and arrogance are the causes of insurrection, or fear, or contempt for incompetence, coupled with ambition. Tyrannies are overthrown by collision with external forces, or by private intrigues in the tyrant’s entourage, and generally in the same sort of way as extreme oligarchies or extreme democracies. Kingships are endangered by intrigues in the royal family, by the King’s personal incompetence, or by his developing tyrannical attributes. Hereditary monarchies are in particular danger from incompetents succeeding. But in a complex society, kingship proper is all but impossible.

A kingship is maintained by the royal self-restraint. The tyrant relies on the material and moral degradation, incapacity and lack of mutual confidence among his subjects, which he fosters by espionage, executions, taxation and the encouragement of licence. Occasionally, the tyrant will seek to secure his position by playing the part and assuming the attributes of a king proper. The shrewd tyrant sees to it that he has the favour of the rich or of the poor.

Neither tyrannies nor oligarchies have proved long-lived.

But really, what did Aristotle know?  

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I take full responsibility for my own opinions, comments and slurs against asshats.  I'm just another guy with just another opinion. Although, I may be turning into my father who my mother always said was 'the world's foremost authority."



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