Fifty Questions: 1-10
Chris Sullivan of Different Bugle has developed a list of fifty questions to ask Presidential candidates during a debate. He thinks he can come up with more, but fifty seems to be a handful for them as it is. If I had my way, every candidate would have to fill out a questionnaire like this one, and it would be posted on the internet by the League of Women Voters or some other neutral party. But they're all too chicken. Fortunately, that's not a problem here at mwbh. So, every day this week, Monday through Friday, we will answer ten at a time.
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1 (a.) All of you who use an income tax preparer, raise your hand.
(b.) If you (who raised hands) can not prepare your own taxes, how do you propose to run the country?
The same way I would if running anything else; I would find smart people who knew a little bit more than I did in various and sundry matters, and surround myself with them. It's called "delegating." I would no more apologize for it than the rest of you
2. If you can not prepare your own tax returns, is it reasonable to hold the average citizen criminally liable for errors?
If "the buck stops" with me, it stops with them too. A smart taxpayer will use a preparer who agrees to represent them in the case of an audit. He would also sit with the preparer as the work is being done. (Yes, I do.)
3. How do you expect to understand bills sent to you for your signature if you can't fill out a tax return?
Taxes are prepared; bills are read. There is a difference.
4. At what point will the national debt be "too high"?
At least thirty years ago. The debt should be based upon the ability to back it with available assets, if only as a contingency. I would use the early 1970s as a benchmark, when the debt was less than one percent of the GDP, and taxes were still relatively low.
5. What is the case law giving the federal government power to prohibit the possession of drugs?
What case law there is would most likely be unconstitutional. Unless specifically called for, I would propose to turn that power over to the several States. The federal role would be limited to regulation of interstate commerce, which is within the limits of the Constitution, and would control most nefarious usage of illegal substances.
6. Assuming all of you are against waste, fraud and abuse; what specific programs and agencies do you propose to eliminate?
The assumption here is that if a program and/or agency is eliminated, the demand for that which is provided by its mission is not. That said, it is the wrong question to ask. The right question would be: what services should the American people no longer expect at the federal level?
7. Should any federal departments or programs ever be eliminated, if so, which ones?
It is my contention, that the need to preserve the Union during the War Between the States, created the byproduct of a significant increase in the role of the central government in relation to the several States. Therefore, most cabinet level agencies formed after that conflict would be subject to particular scrutiny under any proposal I would make to the Congress.
8. How many military bases does the U.S. maintain in foreign countries?
9. How many do you propose to close?
Whichever ones are not essential to the common defense of the United States, as called for in its Constitution. My proposal would be determined based upon a recommendation by a joint working group of the White House and the Departments of State and Defense. Other nations may have to learn to take care of themselves.
10. How much does it cost to keep the above-mentioned bases in operation?
More than we can afford. See answers to questions 8 and 9, to say nothing of 4.
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Keep checking back throughout each day, as they won't be answered all at once. Facebook readers will have an opportunity
[Questions are the intellectual property of their author, and are reproduced here without permission or shame.]