Tuesday, November 5, 2013


Johann Wagener 11-5-13

A person you could look up to and actually point to his achievements with pride and feel good about being an American.

For those that might find this confusing, my question is;  DO YOU LIKE IKE!

I DO! And here's why......

He was a great leader and role model for the Republican party. It's a shame a B-movie actor from California up staged him and got all the fanfare for his scripted one-liners. .

He was a "winner" and one of the major reasons he was admired by Republicans.

He actual fought and won wars, rather than just start them, sit back, and cash in on the backs of our National Treasure brought back to us in wheel chairs and flag draped coffins. The wars he fought, and won, were about survival and preserving the country, not about how much money could be made by dragging them out for decades, inflicting as much damage as possible, and then going in and cleaning up the mess. All for a very large fee from the taxpayer I might add.

He was afflicted by conscience and a sense of morality that's hard to find these days in the so-called Republican party. And, believe it or not, he was a Texan. Rick Perry and Ted Cruz should pick up his biography and read it.

I refer to these values as affliction because today's Republicans see them as a sign of weakness and, God forbid, socialistic, as if it were there Black Plague.

He wasn't as concerned about "Big Government" but more about "Big Business" especially what he coined as the "Military Industrial Complex." It's a shame his warnings were ignored; especially by his political party that's infested with money-making neo-cons who feed on paranoia like rats to a carcass.

It's not that these guys were not around back in Ike's days. It's just that they were not in charge and were effectively neutralized by a 91% tax rate that put a real damper on hoarding profits and  lowered incentives to start another war.

Like it or not, Ike believed the incentive should be on building the country, not some fat cat's bank account. And, for the most part, there were very few whiners. After, a little common sense would cause one to ask, how many homes, cars, yachts, Rolex's does one need? For those that are not self absorbed it at some point all seems boring, and, what's the sense of accomplishment in that? Unless you're in the 1% maybe?

Marginal Tax Rate on Regular Income over $400,000: 92% - 91%

Maximum Tax Rate on Long-Term Capital Gains: 25%

During the administration of Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower, a 92 percent marginal income tax rate for top earners in the United States remained from the previous administration of Harry S. Truman. At the time, the highest tax bracket was for income over $400,000.

This was nearly the highest tax rate for top earners in the century, just under the 94 percent rate for income over $200,000 instated during World War II under Franklin D. Roosevelt's presidency.
In 1954, the 92 percent marginal rate decreased to 91 percent under Eisenhower. The maximum tax on long-term capital gains was 25 percent -- a rate that remained in place for a decade.

The economy overall grew by 37% during the 1950s. At the end of the decade, the median American family had 30% more purchasing power than at the beginning. Inflation, which had wreaked havoc on the economy immediately after World War II, was minimal, in part because of Eisenhower's persistent efforts to balance the federal budget. Except for a mild recession in 1954 and a more serious one in 1958, unemployment remained low, bottoming at less than 4.5% in the middle of the decade.
The G.I. Bill, which gave military veterans affordable access to a college education, added a productive pool of highly-educated employees to the work force at a time American businesses were willing to pay handsomely for engineering and management skills. 

Eisenhower steered a balanced course economically. Some Republicans called for rolling back the New Deal, but the president realized that many of Franklin D. Roosevelt's liberal social programs were both popular and effective. Instead of getting rid of Social Security, for example, Ike actually expanded it to cover another ten million people who had been left out of the original program. Instead of turning away from big public works projects, he instead invested federal money in the Interstate Highway System, one of the largest public spending projects in the country's history.

The main economic goal that Eisenhower pursued through both his terms in office was to achieve a balanced federal budget. The government ran a small deficit in 1954 and 1955, then registered a surplus for each of the next two years. As the nation went into a recession in 1958 and 1959, Eisenhower allowed the federal deficit to grow in order to stimulate the economy. By 1960, he managed to return to a surplus.

To achieve a balanced federal budget was a balancing act in itself. Democrats were clamoring for increases in defense spending in order to counter the Soviet threat. Congressional representatives from both parties pushed for tax cuts. Eisenhower used his credentials as an experienced military leader to reassure the nation that the defense budget did not need to be increased as much as some wanted.Though he favored low taxes himself, he dug in his heels and fought tax cuts whenever they threatened to plunge the government into debt.

For me Ike is an example of what being a Republican stands for. A great leader with a high sense of morality and a social conscience; something sorely lacking in today's crop. Maybe it's time to take Reagan off the altar and put Ike back on the pedestal?