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FactCheck is on top of the claims made by Obama and McCain at last night's debate, with an overview of both candidates' debatable claims. (The AP has a briefer version here.) CNN has a transcript available here, which will do until the Commission on Presidential Debates posts the official one.

Obama was less dynamic overall than I had expected, and he expressed agreement with McCain far too often. By way of contrast, I counted 7 variants of McCain's claim that "Senator Obama doesn't understand." This appears to be his campaign's new mantra, and was almost as annoying as his continued misinterpretation of Obama's "without preconditions" statement, countered by Obama's correct quotation of the odious Henry Kissinger.

One error of McCain's seems to have gotten comparatively little attention:

Right now, the United States of American business pays the second-highest business taxes in the world, 35 percent. Ireland pays 11 percent.

The GOP's corporations-are-overtaxed meme is false, and Obama's response was very much on target:

John mentioned the fact that business taxes on paper are high in this country, and he's absolutely right. Here's the problem: There are so many loopholes that have been written into the tax code, oftentimes with support of Senator McCain, that we actually see our businesses pay effectively one of the lowest tax rates in the world.

According to this recent GAO study (2.7MB PDF) of tax years 1998 through 2005, two-thirds of corporations paid no income tax, including one-quarter of large corporations (those with at least $250 million of assets or at least $50 million of receipts). An effective tax rate of 0% is, as far as I can tell, unbeaten by any other nation. (While we're discussing facts, McCain was wrong about Ireland's corporate tax rate; the Irish Times notes that it is actually 12.5%.)

The remaining debates, which I hope will be more decisive than last night's opener, are as follows:

Thursday 2 October: VP debate Washington University in St. Louis, MO (Gwen Ifill)

Tuesday 7 October: second presidential debate (town meeting)
Belmont University in Nashville, TN (Tom Brokaw)

Wednesday 15 October: third presidential debate
Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY (Bob Schieffer)

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I haven't read The Great Divide, so it's on my list. Thanks.

I'm watching my Georgia Bulldogs get spanked by the Tide right now, so I'll make this brief. Another thing McCain failed to point out about his awful comparison to Ireland is just how much Ireland has benefitted from the EU.

Now, you can take that to mean what you like, but there is a massive influx of funds from the EU and it has contributed to Ireland's very robust economy.

Whatever your take there, it's quite clear that McCain favors corporate welfare which means he's an advocate of neoliberal economics. As for me, Naomi Klein's excellent book, "The Shock Doctrine," is a total reveal on that economic agenda.

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This page contains a single entry by cognitivedissident published on September 27, 2008 11:41 AM.

good idea, poor execution was the previous entry in this blog.

Bill Kirchner: A Miles Davis Reader is the next entry in this blog.

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