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Politics and Money

Reported by Eleanor - September 18, 2004 -

The Fox Cost of Freedom financial series on Saturday morning (Sept. 18, 10:30 a.m.) included the following questions and observations about politics and the market. This is a broad brush of the comments made in the last 90 minutes of the program.

- Bush will win and extend the tax cuts while cutting spending.
- The dow will be at 11,000 by the end of the year.
- If the market goes down, the hurricanes will be to blame.
- The Dan Rather story helped Bush because it kept Kerry out of the headlines.
- The networks can no longer claim they don't have a liberal bias.
- What's bad for Kerry is good for stocks.
- The market is strong when Bush is strong. Kerry doesn't know where to take the nation.
- The polls are up when Bush goes up.
- There is no link between Bush and the markets. The market has been sideways for a year.
- Kerry allows the other side to define him.
- The Bushies have "dirtied" themselves with the swift boat controversy.
- Rather should go on TV and apologize. CBS credibility is shot to hell.
- Kerry should have reacted to the swift boat story sooner.
- Iraq is holding stock prices back. It could go up in flames.
- If Bush pulls ahead, the market goes up.
- If Iraq gets worse, the market goes down.
- Kerry has a "hidden tax plan" that could cost you $4,000 a year. Wall Street will hate an extension of the Social Security payroll tax beyond $87,900. (They said $80,000.)
- Social Security has to be fixed.
- Kerry's plan penalizes the middle class and those who have succeeded.
- Is the market smelling a Bush victory?
- We still don't know John Kerry's plan except for class warfare.
- Social Security is a disaster.
- It was doomed from the start. Should it be privatized? People would have a greater say over how the money is handled.
- We can't change Social Security drastically. Must go for swing voters.
- Dan Rather has not hurt Viacom stocks. CBS is too small.

Comment: The Social Security discussion wasn't clear, but the "hidden tax" appeared to reference an increase in payroll taxes that are currently capped at $87,900, with yearly increases based on the inflation index. If the cap were taken off, it might save the current system. Currently, no one pays Social Security tax on money earned above $87,900.

The "hidden plan" for raising the cap is not listed on Kerry's website, but he does have the following paragraph:

"John Kerry Will Never Balance The Budget On The Backs Of America's Seniors. As president, John Kerry will not raise Social Security taxes, raise the retirement age, cut benefits for people that rely on Social Security, or privatize Social Security. He will consider making sure that high-income beneficiaries don't get more out than they pay in."

See Kerry on Social Security.