Tag Archives: Raise

Gary Habermas and Joel Marcus discuss the resurrection of Jesus

A dialog between Dr. Gary Habermas and Dr. Joel Marcus.

Dr. Habermas is a conservative evangelical who argues that the evidence for the resurrection is strong. Dr. Marcus is fairly moderate, definitely not an evangelical, so it makes for an interesting, but friendly, disagreement. He agrees with Gary on some things, but not on others.

About the speakers:

Gary Habermas

Chair, Department of Philosophy, Liberty University
Distinguished Research Professor

Ph.D., History and Philosophy of Religion, Michigan State University (1976)
M.A., Philosophical Theology, University of Detroit (1973)
B.R.E., Christian Education, Bible, Social Sciences; William Tyndale College (1972)

Distinguished Research Professor; Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary and Graduate School; Chair, Department of Philosophy and Theology, Liberty University; current appointment: teaching in PhD program, Liberty University, 1981-Present.

Joel Marcus

Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins, Duke University

B.A., New York University
M.A., M.Phil., Ph.D, Columbia University-Union Theological Seminary, New York

Joel Marcus teaches New Testament with an emphasis on the Gospels and the context of early Christianity in first-century Judaism. His publications include two monographs on Mark and a two-volume commentary on the same Gospel in the Anchor Bible series (Doubleday, 2000, 2009). His current research focuses on the parting of the ways between ancient Judaism and the Christianity of the first three centuries A.D.

This is MP3 audio of the discussion is in 3 parts.

Each part is 8 Mb. The last segment is Q&A with students.

Gary Habermas and a Duke University professor discuss the resurrection

About the speakers:

Gary Habermas

Chair, Department of Philosophy, Liberty University
Distinguished Research Professor

Ph.D., History and Philosophy of Religion, Michigan State University (1976)
M.A., Philosophical Theology, University of Detroit (1973)
B.R.E., Christian Education, Bible, Social Sciences; William Tyndale College (1972)

Distinguished Research Professor; Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary and Graduate School; Chair, Department of Philosophy and Theology, Liberty University; current appointment: teaching in PhD program, Liberty University, 1981-Present.

Joel Marcus

Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins, Duke University

B.A., New York University
M.A., M.Phil., Ph.D, Columbia University-Union Theological Seminary, New York

Joel Marcus teaches New Testament with an emphasis on the Gospels and the context of early Christianity in first-century Judaism. His publications include two monographs on Mark and a two-volume commentary on the same Gospel in the Anchor Bible series (Doubleday, 2000, 2009). His current research focuses on the parting of the ways between ancient Judaism and the Christianity of the first three centuries A.D.

This is MP3 audio of the discussion is in 3 parts.

Each part is 8 Mb. The last segment is Q&A with students.

Dr. Marcus is fairly moderate, definitely not an evangelical, so it makes for an interesting, but friendly, disagreement. Dr. Habermas is streaky. Sometimes he is hot and sometimes he is cold. This time, he is fairly hot.

What did Reagan do when he inherited a recession?

Ronald Reagan
Ronald Reagan

Here is a piece from Bloomberg from Amity Shlaes. (H/T The Western Experience)

Excerpt:

Double-digit unemployment looms. The country is in a funk. The federal budget deficit is widening to an extent not seen in decades.

This scenario isn’t new. It also describes the U.S. in 1982. Somehow, the 1980s and the 1990s turned out to be pretty good years. So it’s worthwhile to compare current policy to the one followed then.

…Today, taxes are on their way up. Whether it will be abolishing some of the tax deductibility of health care or increasing taxes on soda, President Barack Obama and Congress are clearly signaling the direction in which they want to move. Most tax increases under discussion would make the rich, or companies, the first to pay. The justification offered for this is that the federal government needs the money and may know how to spend it better than the private sector, anyhow.

…In the early 1980s, the view on taxes was the opposite: get them down. The Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981, enacted by Ronald Reagan, pushed tax rates down for wealthy and non-wealthy alike. The capital gains tax rate dropped to 20 percent. When Reagan signed the Tax Reform Act of 1986, the top marginal rate on income taxes fell to 28 percent.

Is Obama right? Or was Reagan right?

The coming tax increases

The Wall Street Journal reports on some of the new taxes Obama wants to impose.

The [health care] bill’s main financing comes from another tax increase on top of the increase already scheduled for 2011 under Mr. Obama’s budget. The surtax starts at one percentage point for adjusted gross income above $350,000 in 2011, rising to two points in 2013; a 1.5 point surtax at incomes above $500,000, rising to three in 2013; and a whopping 5.4 percentage points in 2011 and beyond on incomes above $1 million.

And what happens when you tax the rich?

House Democrats… claim that this surtax would raise $544 billion in new revenue over 10 years. America’s millionaires aren’t that stupid; far fewer of them will pay these rates for very long, if at all. They will find ways to shelter income, either by investing differently or simply working less. Small businesses that pay at the individual rate will shift to pay the 35% corporate rate. When the revenue doesn’t materialize, Democrats will move to soak the middle class with a European-style value-added tax.

It should be noted that a value-added sales tax disproportionately hurts the poor.

Does Obama plan to tax people making less than $250,000?

Keith Hennessey explains how Obamacare will result in higher taxes on the middle class.

Excerpt:

As expected, the House bill would mandate that individuals and families have or buy health insurance.

But what if they don’t buy it?

Then Section 401 kicks in.  Any individual (or family) that does not have health insurance would have to pay a new tax, roughly equal to the smaller of 2.5% of your income or the cost of a health insurance plan.

I assume the bill authors would respond, “But why wouldn’t you want insurance?  After all, we’re subsidizing it for everyone up to 400% of the poverty line.”

That is true.  But if you’re a single person with income of $44,000 or higher, then you’re above 400% of the poverty line.  You would not be subsidized, but would face the punitive tax if you didn’t get health insurance.  This bill leaves an important gap between the subsidies and the cost of health insurance.  CBO says that for about eight million people, that gap is too big to close, and they would get stuck paying higher taxes and still without health insurance.

He uses several different examples to show how Obama’s plan would raise taxes on people making much less than 250,000 dollars a year. I know what you’re thinking – “Wintery! Obama promised he wouldn’t raise taxes on the middle class!” Well, he’s going to do exactly what is consistent with his voting record. If only the left-wing media had told us his voting record, instead of talking incessantly about Sarah Palin’s children.

I should note that Obama broke his tax pledge many times already.

Americans for Tax Reform has been documenting Obama’s string of broken tax promises. Obama first shattered his $250K promise only 16 days into the presidency when he enacted a 61 cent tax increase on cigarette packs, disproportionately hurting low-income Americans. Next, Obama aggressively supported the cap-and-trade tax that, if the bill passes the Senate, will increase energy costs for an average American family by $1,500. Now, in a recent interview with Obama’s Senior Adviser David Axelrod, the administration is waffling about how taxes will be raised for health care reform. When asked if tax increases on families making less than $250,000 might pay for health care, Sen. Schumer, D-N.Y. said, “There are lots of things on the table now.”

Next time, don’t worry about Tina Fey’s sketches, worry about the thousands of dollars that Obammunism will cost you in increased health care costs, increased electricity costs, higher taxes, lost income, stock losses, interest on the national debt, etc. Katie Couric isn’t going to give you all your savings back. Campbell Brown isn’t going to give you your job back. They’re rich Democrats. They don’t care about truth.

UPDATE: Hot Air links to the story and adds this:

As John Boehner points out, many of the so-called “rich” above $250K a year in earnings are small-business owners who simply file their business revenues as personal income.  A 5.4% “surtax” — really just a hike in the upper tax bracket — will take more of their capital out of their businesses and reduce the opportunity for job growth.

The Post notes that the “surtax” would apply to about 2.1 million Americans.  The mandate for coverage will force almost four times as many middle-class Americans to pay higher taxes as a result of the ObamaCare plan in the House while preventing them from getting coverage.  The House hasn’t soaked the rich; they’ve declared war on the middle class and the uninsured.

Socialists against the middle class.

How do Democrat policies stimulate the economy?

Consider this Washington Times article to see how it works. (H/T Gateway Pundit)

Excerpt:

The Obama administration revealed last week that as much as $16.1 million from the stimulus program is going to save the San Francisco Bay Area habitat of, among other things, the endangered salt marsh harvest mouse.

That has revived Republican criticism that the pet project was an “invisible earmark” in the massive spending bill for Mrs. Pelosi, whose San Francisco district abuts the Bay, and epitomizes what Republicans say is the failure of stimulus spending so far to help an economy still shedding jobs.

“Lo and behold, the government has announced that the mouse is getting its money after all,” House Minority Leader John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican, said, standing beside a poster of the furry varmint. “Speaker Pelosi must be so proud.”

Mrs. Pelosi’s office was quick to dismiss the criticism.

My preferred stimulus was to spend under $400 billion and to temporarily suspend the employer portion of payroll taxes, so that American employees would go on sale. When people have jobs, then they are comfortable spending money. But Obama and Pelosi preferred to spend the money on mice. American workers or mice? Which one stimulates the economy?

Earlier this week I wrote about how well the first two stimulus bills worked, and how the Democrats would like to pass a third stimulus bill.

Raising taxes

Democrats also think that raising taxes on businesses and individuals will stimulate the economy. See, when the unemployment rate goes to 9.5%, and everyone has to pay more for electricity and gas, then Democrats believe that people will spend more.

Consider this article from Politico which lists some of the ideas they are considering. (H/T Michelle Malkin)

Excerpt:

— Broaden the 1.45-percent Medicare tax on earned income to “passive income,” which could include money from capital gains, rental properties and businesses that do not require direct participation. This could raise $100 billion.

— Levy a five-percent surtax on individuals who earn more than $500,000 and couples that make $1 million.

— Tax health benefits at a higher level than had been considered. Two scenarios are in play. Taxing plans worth more than $20,300 for a family and $8,300 for an individual could raise $240 billion. Increasing the cut-off to plans worth more than $25,000 would bring $90 billion.

— Capping the tax break on itemized deductions at 28 percent, as President Barack Obama had proposed, or freezing the top deduction rate at 35 percent when the Bush tax cuts expire in 2010. The first scenario would raise $168 billion, while the second would collect $90 billion.

— Issue tax credit bonds to pay for the proposed Medicaid expansion, raising $75 billion.

— Charge fees to pharmaceutical manufacturers, bringing in as much as $20 billion, and insurance providers, raising $75 billion.

– Raise taxes on sodas and sugary drinks. A 3-cent hike could pick up $30 billion, and a 10-cent hike could make $100 billion. This one already appears out of favor: Many senators have specifically ruled out the sugar tax, and a Senate Democratic source said it was the one option that was clearly not gaining traction with committee members.

Try to think about what effect this will have on the person who rents you your apartment, who supplies your employer with capital, or who pays your salary. Try to think about whether you will pay more or less for the goods and services you need when the people who provide them are attacked by the government. Try to think about what effect increased borrowing will have on the prosperity of your children.