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The Debate over the Debate!

So, I have heard many of my friends from either side of the isle comment over who won the debate (of which I saw no elements of a debate at least like any that I have ever participated in) on last Monday Sept. 26th. I have heard the comments about;

Whether it was rigged or not?

Did Lester Holt show bias in his questions?

Donald Trump acted just like they thought he would. (childish and throwing a tantrum.)

Was Donald Trump on cocaine? (sniff!) 

Were there secret signals sent back and forth from Hillary Clinton to Lester Holt? (Scratching to the left of nose or chin!)

So a little disclaimer about what I am about to post, personally I am astounded that these are the two top candidates that have been chosen to represent the two largest political parties here in the United States. There are things that I in my personal values may agree or disagree with along both party lines as well as other third parties that were not included in this debate. But I am only going to represent the facts here and let others judge for themselves and I feel that facts stand alone and anyone can take them with a grain of salt or at least give them a decent review. So the main facts that we can look at is the question volume and content, so I am placing the content of the questions that Lester Holt presented to both Hillary Clinton represented in Blue  and Donald Trump represented in Red. So here they are separated, to show the amount and content to each Presidential Candidate. Pardon my quixotic nature as I put the lady first.

Questions to Hillary Clinton:

  1. Beginning with you, Secretary Clinton, why are you a better choice than your opponent to create the kinds of jobs that will put more money into the pockets of American workers?”
  2. “You have two minutes of the same question to defend tax increases on the wealthiest Americans, Secretary Clinton.”
  3. “(Referring to Trump’s question about Clinton’s e-mail scandal) Well, I’ll let her answer that…Secretary Clinton?”
  4. “[Trump] also raised the issue of your e-mails. Do you want to respond to that?"
  5. “The share of Americans who say race relations are bad in this country is the highest it’s been in decades, much of it amplified by shootings of African-Americans by police, as we’ve seen recently in Charlotte and Tulsa. Race has been a big issue in this campaign, and one of you is going to have to bridge a very wide and bitter gap. So how do you heal the divide? Secretary Clinton, you get two minutes on this.”
  6. “Secretary Clinton, last week, you said we’ve got to do everything possible to improve policing, to go right at implicit bias. Do you believe that police are implicitly biased against black people?”
  7. “Our next segment is called ‘Securing America.’ We want to start with a 21st century war happening every day in this country. Our institutions are under cyber-attack, and our secrets are being stolen. So my question is, who’s behind it? And how do we fight it? Secretary Clinton, this answer goes to you.” 
  8. “One of you will not win this election. So my final question to you tonight, are you willing to accept the outcome as the will of the voters? Secretary Clinton?”

Questions to Donald Trump:

  1. “Mr. Trump, the same question to you. It’s about putting money—more money into the pockets of American workers. You have up to two minutes.”
  2. “Secretary Clinton, you’re calling for a tax increase on the wealthiest Americans. I’d like you to further defend that. And, Mr. Trump, you’re calling for tax cuts for the wealthy. I’d like you to defend that. And this next two-minute answer goes to you, Mr. Trump.”
  3. “Let me follow up with Mr. Trump, if you can. You’ve talked about creating 25 million jobs, and you’ve promised to bring back millions of jobs for Americans. How are you going to bring back the industries that have left this country for cheaper labor overseas? How, specifically, are you going to tell American manufacturers that you have to come back?”
  4. “Back to the question, though. How do you bring back—specifically bring back jobs, American manufacturers? How do you make them bring the jobs back?”
  5. “Mr. Trump, we’re talking about the burden that Americans have to pay, yet you have not released your tax returns. And the reason nominees have released their returns for decades is so that voters will know if their potential president owes money to—who he owes it to and any business conflicts. Don’t Americans have a right to know if there are any conflicts of interest?”
  6. “The IRS says an audit…[interrupted by Trump]…of your taxes—you’re perfectly free to release your taxes during an audit. And so the question, does the public’s right to know outweigh your personal…[interrupted by Trump]”
  7. “So [releasing your tax returns] is negotiable?”
  8. “Mr. Trump, for five years, you perpetuated a false claim that the nation’s first black president was not a natural-born citizen. You questioned his legitimacy. In the last couple of weeks, you acknowledged what most Americans have accepted for years: The president was born in the United States. Can you tell us what took you so long?”
  9. “But I just want to get the answer here. The birth certificate was produced in 2011. You’ve continued to tell the story and question the president’s legitimacy in 2012, ’13, ’14, ’15…as recently as January. So the question is, what changed your mind?”
  10. “I’m sorry. I’m just going to follow up — and I will let you respond to that, because there’s a lot there. But we’re talking about racial healing in this segment. What do you say to Americans, people of color who…[interrupted by Trump]”
  11. “Mr. Trump, you have two minutes and the same question. Who’s behind [cyber attacks on the US]? And how do we fight it?”
  12. “You mention ISIS, and we think of ISIS certainly as over there, but there are American citizens who have been inspired to commit acts of terror on American soil, the latest incident, of course, the bombings we just saw in New York and New Jersey, the knife attack at a mall in Minnesota, in the last year, deadly attacks in San Bernardino and Orlando. I’ll ask this to both of you. Tell us specifically how you would prevent homegrown attacks by American citizens, Mr. Trump?”
  13. “Why is your judgment [on the Iraq War]— why is your judgment any different than Mrs. Clinton’s judgment?”
  14. “Which leads to my next question, as we enter our last segment here, the subject of securing America. On nuclear weapons, President Obama reportedly considered changing the nation’s longstanding policy on first use. Do you support the current policy? Mr. Trump, you have two minutes on that.”
  15. “Mr. Trump, this year Secretary Clinton became the first woman nominated for president by a major party. Earlier this month, you said she doesn’t have, quote, “a presidential look.” She’s standing here right now. What did you mean by that?”
  16. “Mr. Trump, very quickly, same question. Will you accept the outcome as the will of the voters?, Will you accept the outcome of the election?”

I will start out by saying I neither endorse nor support either candidate but if you look at the pure content and volume of questions it is quite easy to see that there were more questions posed to Trump verses Clinton and as far as their content it is quite obvious to see it is a little one sided questioning with requirements of validation more specifically challenging Trump. For this I would blame the moderator Lester Holt I felt that he did a very lackluster job on treating the two fairly with both of their numerous scandals and controversies he seemed to pretty much attack one while handling the other with "kid gloves".  I am aware that Holt is a registered Republican yet I find this to be of no value as I know people that are registered Democrat and vote Republican and vice versa. What has happened to our news media? They no longer report the news but rather opinion and I for one am tired of it. In my opinion they should let all  top 21 third party (see homepage) candidates (those that are listed on at least 20 states or more.) debate or even host a third party candidate debate in lieu of not allowing them to participate in the main debate.

Yet I digress! so back to a little on the debates so a quick look at the questions. They started out as a fairly good question about how to put Americans back to work and taxes. I noticed that Lester made only mention about taxing increases and cuts for the wealthy but no mention of the middle class by Holt, So I decided to look at both candidates websites for more insight because in the end we know that the tax burden falls mostly on it's citizens and not it's corporations, (Individuals paid 1.6 Trillion in income taxes and 1.1 Trillion in Social insurance taxes for a total of 2.7 trillion paid out by american workers compared to 344 Billion paid by corporations in 2015. Federal Budget 2015

Clinton's view on taxes are available on her website here and here (there are other sublinks on these pages to specifics) on closing tax loop holes for corporations, while I agree with making sure that we close these loop holes that allow corporations to file and claim nearly next to nothing in tax responsibility, I was only able to find this short piece on the individuals and families. 

" Provide tax relief to working families from the rising costs they face.

For too many years, middle-class families have been squeezed by rising costs for everything from child care to health care to affording college. Hillary will offer relief from these rising costs, including tax relief for Americans facing excessive out-of-pocket health care costs and for those caring for an ill or elderly family member."

In her defense she does go in to long detail about laws that need to be changed for corporations, but would these changes and raises affect or possibly put people out of jobs? She also proposes that people making more than $ 1 million a year pay a required 30% tax on income but that does not state net or gross. Most of her tax reform seems to talk about the wealthy and is spread out over many pages on the website, which can be a bit overwhelming when you are looking for specifics.

Trump's view on taxes are available on his website here, pretty much all of it fits on one page and his individual and joint or family tax structures are pretty simple, he actually out does Hillary and  raises taxes on those make $225,000.00 or more to 33% and 1/2 of that for single filers. He will increase standard deductions and place a cap on itemized deductions. here are his brackets for taxes:

Individual Income Tax

Tax rates

The Trump Plan will collapse the current seven tax brackets to three brackets. The rates and breakpoints are as shown below. The tax brackets are similar to those in the House GOP tax blueprint.

Brackets & Rates for Married-Joint filers:

Less than $75,000: 12%

More than $75,000 but less than $225,000: 25%

More than $225,000: 33%

*Brackets for single filers are ½ of these amounts

The Trump Plan will retain the existing capital gains rate structure (maximum rate of 20 percent) with tax brackets shown above. Carried interest will be taxed as ordinary income.

Now back to more on the debate, Lester Holt pushed Trump on his tax returns as he should to show transparency. The only objections I think that Trump would face is that while being under audit, if he has made even one little mistake a comma out of place or anything it is almost certain he will be hounded in the media for it. However when it came to Clinton's emails he treated as a trivial matter and even asked her if she wanted to respond to that. Personally I think as Holt suggested they should release both at the same time and let the melee ensue!

Lastly Holt actually referred to Trump's support of the Iraq war in 2002 (Stern Clip at 1:40) (Trump says,"Yeh, I guess so. We should have done it right the first time.") with no mention of Clinton's Senate vote to support the Iraq War and said how is that any different as Trump at first disagreed with the statement and then stated  "I was a business man" i.e. a private citizen. As a matter of fact it is a whole lot different, Clinton had privy to numerous security reports that Trump or private citizens such as you are I do not have privilege to. In Clinton's defense she has said since then it was a mistake that she voted for the War in Iraq. 

In Closing I will encourage all to "hold on folks" it's going to be a wild ride over the next four years, I for one will be praying fervently for our nation and whoever gets into the White House. As far as for any pointers I would have to give this one to Trump during the next debate take a cue from Hillary Clinton, when you are accused of something and not for sure if you said or did it, instead of blurting an " I didn't do it or say it." calmly turn toward the camera and respond, " I don't recall." Because spontaneous memory lapse is better than being proved a liar, and I guess it's worked  pretty well for her. 

Good Night and God bless! enjoy the VP debate tonight!

 

ur12bheard 10.04.2016 5 249
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  •  Bill Cockerham : 
     
    Good article!
     
     10.06.20161 replies1 replies 
    1 point
     
  •  Zachary Akers: 
     
    Very nicely written article! I agree with you on several points. A little background on myself, first of all....I was raised in RABID Republican household. "Obama", "climate change", and "tax increase" were words best not uttered around my family. As I grew up and spent time with people of all walks of life, it became very apparent to me that I had been raised to look at the world in a very obscure light. My opinions and ideology changed in ways I never imagined possible. That being said, I've got to agree with you that neither of these candidates are suitable for such a high office. I look at Trump and Clinton like this: Clinton is a typical politician. She will promise everything and deliver on very little of it. Nothing new here, world keeps on spinning. On the other hand, Trump is a DANGEROUS person. I'm confident that if he's elected, his poor judgment and hair-trigger will result in awful, awful things for America and other countries. I understand people's many frustrations with the Obama administration and Clinton will perpetuate it. But Trump is another beast all together. That's my two cents. I'll continue to look for the silver lining in this one. Thanks again for a great review!!
     
     10.06.20162 replies2 replies 
    1 point
     
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