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Bulls & Bears
This week Brenda Buttner was joined by Gary B. Smith, Pat Dorsey, Eric Bolling, Todd Wilemon and Julian Epstein.
Unions Pump Cash Into Campaign Ads as States Seek Cutbacks
Eric Bolling, Fox Business Network: The unions just don't get it. They've priced their members out of the job market. They kept pressing for higher wages, more benefits, increased job security, and now look what's happened. Case in point, the city of Milwaukee is broke. The city went to the teachers union, asked to renegotiate its contract, and the union said no. The result? The city laid-off 480 teachers. But they all could have kept their jobs if they had renegotiated the contracts. And now, these unions are looking to the federal government to get bailed out.
Julian Epstein, Democratic strategist: I think it's reasonable to expect unions to be lobbying to protect the jobs of the teachers, cops, firefighters, etc. who are their members. If you factor in the amount of money corporations are spending on issue ads, corporations are spending far more on ads than unions. This comes down to whether federal aid to local and state governments is a good thing during an economic recession. If you don't provide the aid, states and municipalities can do two things—cut jobs and/or raise taxes. This is a short-term problem due to falling tax revenues. In the meantime federal aid should be provided to avoid jobs cuts and tax hikes.
Gary B. Smith, TheChartman.com: I agree that we can't be surprised that unions are fighting for the jobs of their members. The problem though is that it comes on the backs of everyone else. From 1990 to 2000, private sector jobs increased about 21 percent. From 2000 to 2010, it actually shrunk 3 percent. But public sector employment over that same period has grown 11 percent. The worst part is that all these great public sector jobs are paid for by the private sector. And many public sector jobs create no wealth. They just bring the country down a road of economic malaise. We can't have the public sector grow at the expense of the private sector.
Todd Wilemon, NYSE Euronext: Look at New Jersey. Governor Chris Christie told the teachers union that if it didn't enact a pay increase next year, then the state wouldn't be forced to lay off one teacher. But instead, the union said it'd rather have teachers laid off than not get the pay increase. For once, it's time for unions to start sacrificing with the rest of us. We have to start realizing that increasing government spending will not do anything to get us out of a recession. What got us out of the last recession? The 2003 Bush tax cut; and it got unemployment down to 4.5 percent. It's time for the government to start implementing policies that actually work.
Pat Dorsey, Morningstar.com: The larger issue here is the long-term cuts that are going to have to be implemented to keep states and municipalities solvent. This is not some short-term problem. The huge costs associated with pension and retirement plans for public workers is a big issue that is only going to get worse. We had mayors, governors, etc. who agreed to lavish benefits for public workers operated on the assumption that things would be great economically forever, the stock market would have 10 percent annual returns, etc. These promises were just so removed from ever being economically viable over the long-term. Unless there is fundamental structural change to these benefit programs, nothing changes.
Fed Suit Against Arizona Law Triggers Job Loss Fears
Todd Wilemon: At the end of 2009, there were about 6.8 illegal aliens working in the U.S. The latest job report shows about 14.6 million Americans are out of work. If you put the two numbers together, you're see that some illegal aliens are taking away jobs from Americans and driving down wages. We are a nation of laws, and there's a method and process to becoming a legal alien or citizen. Those are the people we need to be protecting and looking out for right now.
Gary B. Smith: It might sound right that illegal aliens take away jobs from Americans. But study after study shows that this just isn't really the case. The White House Council of Economic Advisors under George Bush said that, on average, U.S. citizens benefit from immigration because immigrants compliment U.S. workers, not substitute for their jobs. About 90 percent of foreign workers in the U.S. experience an increase in wages due to immigration. The fact is though, immigration, be it legal or illegal, is not hurting the job market.
Eric Bolling: There are 12 or 13 million illegal aliens in the country, and they're holding jobs that 14 million unemployed Americans could use. Plus, the illegal workers depress wages since they're often willing to do the same job for less than an American citizen. This federal lawsuit is sending a signal to every illegal immigrant thinking about crossing the border to see how it all plays out. If the courts rule in the federal government's favor, then you could see a huge influx of new illegal immigrants coming over the border, and only worsen the job market for Americans.
Julian Epstein: As many studies have shown, immigration, legal or illegal, is good for the economy on balance. I think everyone would agree that there's a major need for immigration reform. And we need to stem illegal immigration for a whole host of reasons, national security included. The problem with Arizona's law is that it's targeted at Hispanics, and it forces immigration enforcement on local law officials who aren't properly trained for that. And unfortunately I think it'll drive away immigration to the state as a whole, which will be detrimental to its economy.
Pat Dorsey: I don't there's been some mass exodus of unemployed GM workers moving from Flint, Michigan to California to pick strawberries. I just don't buy the argument that, for the most part, illegal immigrants are taking jobs Americans are falling over themselves for to try and get. But great human capital, in terms of highly intelligent, skilled people, is scarce. And we should not be fostering an environment in this country that implies to highly skilled immigrants that they might not be welcome here.
Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac Warn 'Green' Home Loans Are Too Risky
Gary B. Smith: Evidently, these are too risky for everybody. The government just needs to get out of pushing people into the home ownership business. We can't repeat the process of giving out loans that are too risky. These home energy assistance programs are perfectly structured to allow rampant fraud. The government already gets taken for countless billions a year in various types of fraud. We don't need another program to add-on to that.
Julian Epstein: I agree that the government gets defrauded in far too many programs, and that needs reform. But I don't think we can necessarily complain about green energy subsidies when the oil, natural gas, and coal industry get tens of billions worth of subsidies every year. It's not the worst idea to have government-backed mortgages that promote green energy usage.
Eric Bolling: If Fannie and Freddie are saying these loans are too risky, then we shouldn't have anything to do with them. They have trillions worth of questionable loans still on their books, and when they say "hold up" on certain types of loans, we better listen. This is like Lindsay Lohan saying "whoa, this cocktail is too strong for me."
Todd Wilemon: The problem with most forms of green energy, be it on a small or large scale, is that they're just not efficient enough, or cost effective. Adding these loans on top of a shaky mortgage market just isn't a good idea, and thankfully Freddie and Fannie are showing they're clued into the reality of it.
Pat Dorsey: It's not that Fannie and Freddie aren't accepting these loans because they're too risky. "Risky" implies they're not going to get paid back. That isn't the issue. The issue is that these green energy loans would be first lien loans. That means they're in front of the existing debt holder who has title to the home mortgage. Nobody who lends money wants somebody else stepping in front of them in line. The problem is that the price and value of these loans mixed in with a home mortgage would be too difficult to properly assess.
Gary B. Smith: Overcrowding is on Lindsay's side! "CXW" locks down 15 percent gains by 2011
Todd Wilemon: Chile is hot! "ECH" heats up 25 percent by 2011
Pat Dorsey: Health care is where it's at! "MYGN" doubles by 2013
Eric Bolling: People will still buy dogs! "PG" barks up 30 percent in 1 year
Cavuto on Business
This week, Charles Payne was in for Neil Cavuto. Charles was joined by Ben Stein, Dagen McDowell, Joe Battipaglia and Adam Lashinsky.
Business Summit to Tell President: Stop 'Regulatory Stranglehold'
Joe Battipaglia, Stifel Nicolaus: The markets are saying that business has it right. The credit system is still malfunctioning, the regulatory frame work is coming on hot and heavy in very big sectors of the economy and confidence is slipping, not gaining. Clearly business is worried looking at an oncoming year where taxes go up for everybody. What's happening right now is small companies are actually being turned back by their health care providers saying we're not going to sign you up for next year's health care yet until we know exactly how much premiums are going up. How can you hire a new worker, let alone keep the ones you have in a recession with that facing you? And now we want to talk about cap and trade legislation? We want to talk about re-regulating the financial services industry?
Dagen McDowell, Fox Business Network: Small businesses have gotten the shortest end of the stick. There's lots of uncertainty about tax policy. There's no lending available, TARP didn't work for them. They're getting really hurt. You know what number matters? The unemployment rate. It's still near 10 percent and small businesses do the most hiring. But they're looking at getting hit with $2,000 per employee if they don't offer health care to them. That hits in 2014. This is going to be a recovery that does not happen. And even worse, businesses don't feel like they have an ear with the administration. They just hear a lot of anti-business rhetoric.
Ben Stein, Author, "Little Book of Bulletproof Investing": I travel all around the country speaking to business groups. When I asked them why they aren't hiring, the number one reason they say is they're afraid if we hire somebody, government will slap a new mandate on us—be it for taxes, a new mandate for health care, etc. If we build a factory, there will be a new mandate for that, new taxes for environmental reasons. They're scared of what the government will do if we expand even a little bit. So, clearly this government has businesses plenty spooked. I think we've got to have a major sit-down, between the president and businesses. Because I think this president basically does not like business at heart.
Adam Lashinsky, Fox Business contributor: I disagree the White House is against business. We cannot forget the deregulatory environment of the last five to ten years. And clearly that didn't work out so well for many small businesses. Not only could they not get loans, they went out of business. If you want to talk about the market's reaction, it's up considerably since President Obama took office. We don't know where the markets would have been had President Bush and President Obama not stabilized the financial system. Employers shoot themselves in the foot if they don't hire because they're afraid of what the government might do to them. Aggressive businesses, capitalists, will hire people to try to grow their businesses regardless.
President's Pick to Run Medicare: Redistribute Wealth for Health Care
Ben Stein: This scares me to death. I'm not so much scared about the money part, because the government has pretty much picked my bones clean on taxes. This is the man who said I am in love with the British health care system which rations itself saying we're going to let people die if they're old or treatment is too expensive. It makes end of life care choices. Certain people will be allowed to live and certain people allowed to die. This is a very scary system for the United States of America. We do not want some government bureaucrats saying "you Mr. A get to live and you Mr. B get to die."
Dagen McDowell: President Obama's pick is a poster boy for rationing and price controls and that's the very reason that the White House did not want hearings on this. Even Max Baucus, the head of the Senate finance committee, was upset about this recess appointment because it's as clear as day to the American people what this health care law means for them. This guy called the British National Health Service a treasure and he's romantic about it. There's romance about the government deciding who dies and who lives? This is not even about one man; it's about all the people the administration will put in place to cook up the details of this health care law. In terms of price controls and rationing. And, by the way, he will oversee a budget that is bigger than the Defense Department. Why doesn't that bother anybody?
Joe Battipaglia: Well, now he is going to be synonymous with health care reform itself. The majority of Americans don't want it and there's no bipartisan support for it, and now he's going to be the poster child for price controls in health care and rationing and it's going to hurt them come the election. This is a very dangerous move because this is not a time of emergency where you make a recess appointment. This is time for more discussion and we don't get it here and the president is running out of everyone's ability to let him have a pass. When the guy used to say one thing, now says something else and doesn't mean what he used to say. We've heard this too many times and it's not holding with the public.
Adam Lashinsky: I know we're very uncomfortable with philosophical nuance, but philosophically what he said is not outrageous. All of these types of things, the way Medicare and Medicaid exist and have existed for decades constitutes redistribution of wealth. When we give services to poor people that rich people can afford to buy for themselves, that's redistribution of wealth. Now, does that make me a socialist for saying so? Or Berwick a socialist for believing so? He's not going to be able to do anything beyond what the law that was passed by Congress, and signed by the President. This is the bill that congress passed. It was ugly; we're trying to get health insurance to people who don't have it.
LeBron James' Free Market Move to Miami Slammed By Cavs' Owner
Joe Battipaglia: The fact of the matter is LeBron honored his contract, he almost won them a championship, and he's made a very good business decision. He's weighed near-term compensation to the ability to win championships. I think he carried himself admirably, made it a major competition among teams to court him, and did it all within bounds. We are talking about an athlete, not a politician. The politicians should leave Cleveland to the Promise Land not an athlete who's going to take his career where it's going to take him.
Dagen McDowell: This is exactly what we want our kids to be like in terms of hard work and succeeding. If you read the letter the Cavs owner wrote, it's like something a 13-year-old would write on Facebook. It's all caps and quotation marks and part was bolded. It's just bad, and unfortunate to see someone come down to that level.
Ben Stein: LeBron is a traitor. Cleveland worshipped this guy. He was a great for Cleveland—a city that's taken its lumps, but a great city nonetheless. The town has incredible sports fans and they loved LeBron. Here was a guy who a whole town placed their trust in and said we love you, we want you, and he just said, forget it, I want to go to Miami where there are more cute girls and maybe a championship.
Adam Lashinsky: LeBron is an athlete, but also an entertainer. From an employee's perspective, employees need to do what's best for them. Because they can rest assured that the organization will not do what's best for them. The organization will do what's best for the organization. There is a time for loyalty though. It can serve the employee very well to be loyal to an organization because he or she can move up and do better. But this isn't one of those times for LeBron James. He's doing exactly the right thing.
Joe Battipaglia: Pepsico (PEP)
Adam Lashinsky: BlackRock Equity Dividend (MRDVX)
Ben Stein: iShares MSCI EAFE Index (EFA)
Forbes on Fox
On Saturday, July 10, 2010, David Asman was joined by Bill Baldwin, Neil Weinberg, Stephane Fitch, Mike Ozanian, Quentin Hardy, Victoria Barret, and Elizabeth MacDonald.
In Focus: Democrats Say Bush Tax Cuts Must Expire Unless They're Paid For; Middle Class Tax Hikes Coming?
David Asman: That debt clock just keeps ticking up as the clock keeps ticking down on the Bush tax cuts. They're set to expire in just less than 6 months and now some Democrats are saying if you want to extend them, you have to pay for them. Is this new pay-go concern their way to forgo all of them? Hi everybody, I'm David Asman. Welcome to Forbes on Fox. Let's go In Focus with Victoria Barret, Mike Ozanian, Elizabeth MacDonald, Bill Baldwin, Quentin Hardy, and Stephane Fitch. Steve Forbes will be back with us next week. So Mike, are they using pay-go as political cover for raising taxes?
Mike Ozanian: Absolutely, and it's a dishonest argument that the Democrats are using because cuts in marginal tax rates, whether under Bush or Reagan or Kennedy, actually increased revenue that flowed into the government because they increased economic activity.
Stephane Fitch: I think some of the Democrats who got this wrong have found some bedfellows on the right who also have this wrong. The Bush tax cuts were not particularly smart or valuable but we have to hold our nose and keep them in place for now. The economy needs some steadiness. I'm actually for fiscal irresponsibility. Keep spending and keep the tax cuts in place.
Bill Baldwin: I have a great plan for the White House. They should say, Bush signed that law with a sunset on the tax cuts. So, if your taxes go up in January, we're going to blame the previous administration. It might just work. The tax cuts are not here to stay. Tax increases are definite, even on the middle class because there aren't enough rich people to soak. Obama has already broken his pledge, hasn't he? When he raised taxes on sun tanning parlors, didn't that hit the middle class?
Quentin Hardy: I blame Obama too because he defines middle class as over $200,000. I'm sorry, but if that's even 8 percent of the country, which is a very liberal estimate, there's still 42 percent more to go before we get to the middle. These are rich people. And let's talk about when these things were made. They were made to expire, and we were going to test them out to see if we should keep them. Since then, we've gone from a surplus to a massive deficit, unemployment has sky-rocketed, we had a huge financial bubble, and the middle class stayed still—they didn't benefit, they got crushed. This was clearly a terrible policy that didn't work. Let's get rid of it.
Elizabeth MacDonald: ADP says small businesses have knocked out about 20,000 workers every month for the last several months. I hear what Quentin is saying, but you don't feel like you're rich in the $200,000 range when you're living in a high- priced city where state and local taxes get loaded in. You feel very middle class. As to whether or not the Bush tax cuts helped the economy, we added the equivalent of the size of the GDP of France under them, 5 Saudi Arabias, 15 Egypts. The Bush tax cuts brought in more than $700 billion in federal fiscal revenues by some estimates.
Victoria Barret: The taxes are going to go after small businesses and investors. You have the possibility of the capital gains rate going up. That's going to be a hit on the stock market that is probably being priced in already. I think there is the reality of taxes going up, and then there's a psychological tax on people just not knowing what their tax rate is going to be. We need certainty in our tax system, not this temporary phasing in and out, which I blame the Bush administration for and which we will see again, because that's the way the Democrats can loophole their way around the deficit issue. They say they'll increase these rates and decrease these rates but only for another 5 years—then they'll ratchet back up. That's how you make the numbers look pretty.
Pay-for-Performance for Public School Teachers?
David Asman: Teacher unions snubbing the White House. It doesn't seem possible, but the National Education Association did not invite anyone from the administration to speak at its convention this summer. The reason? They're ticked about the president's pay-for-performance plan, saying it creates a system of winners and losers. But Elizabeth, you say that's exactly what teachers need.
Elizabeth MacDonald: I think teachers should earn combat pay because they are essentially running social welfare agencies and nurseries. The things teachers have to put up with for parents who don't take care of their kids are just wrong. $20,000 to $30,000 per teacher if they are bringing their students' test scores up—why not? In DC, 8 percent of the children don't have grade level math, and they're spending $14,000 per student versus $6,300, which is the national average. I am for pay-for-performance and I think the teachers would be too.
Bill Baldwin: Pay-for-performance? Do we have pay-for-chiseling, which is what went on in Chicago or Atlanta? Or pay-for-teaching-to-the-test, which is what will go on all over the country if we have a bonus plan like this? I say put the parents in control by giving them vouchers and letting them decide whether or not the school is working, not some standardized test.
Quentin Hardy: I think you have to have some kind of benchmark and pay-for-performance is part of that. But you have to do it right so that an inner-city school is measured against an inner-city school, and a rural school where people don't speak a lot of English is measured against a rural school like that. But a lot of the problem is disruptive kids. I say pay-for-performance on the parents' side too. If your kid is disruptive or expelled, you lose your child tax credit.
Neil Weinberg: I think we should have incentives-for-performance, but not pay-for-performance. The problem is, we have teacher unions that have helped bankrupt metropolitan areas all over this country, and now we are talking about giving their members $20,000 or $30,000 for doing their jobs. They're supposed to be civil servants. If you want incentives, I agree with Bill—give people the choice to move out of schools and if the schools don't perform well, they get closed and the teachers lose their jobs. That's an incentive.
Stephane Fitch: I think Obama has this right. He's put in place a smart program called Race to the Top, and states all over the country are having this discussion and we are actually moving in this direction. What I'm worried about is that we go to far with it and we end up with high school classes like we were reading about in the papers this week that graduate 20 valedictorians.
Mike Ozanian: I'm against pay-for-performance because it's going to be nothing but a payoff to the unions—everyone is going to be a straight A student. You have to give the control to the parents at the local level.
Stimulus Dollars Spent Fighting Obesity a Good Use of Taxpayer Money?
David Asman: Goodbye Mr. Goodbar, hello yellow squash. The government spending hundreds of millions of our stimulus bucks to stock shelves with fruits and veggies. Philadelphia just got $25 million to do that, but Mike, do fruits and veggies create jobs?
Mike Ozanian: No, they don't! In fact, I would argue that I create more jobs with all of the apple pie that I eat.
But here's what bothers me. Why does the government use my money to pay farmers to grow unhealthy foods like fructose and corn syrup, and then take more of it to pay people to eat fruits and veggies?
Stephane Fitch: I say, good for Philly on this one. Fat butts take up more room on buses, trains, and cars. If you have skinnier butts, you have less need for buses, trains, and cars. And, you'll reduce our dependence on Mexican chorizo sausage.
Victoria Barret: We are talking about more than $300 million going out to 44 communities, so that's about $8.5 million a community. That's a lot of money to push this cause, and if we really wanted to incent people to live healthier lives, we could have done this in the health care bill, and given them more power to control their health care spending. Instead we did the opposite. This makes no sense and it won't create jobs.
Neil Weinberg: In the pantheon of absurd spending of our stimulus dollars this probably doesn't even rank near the top, but in terms of social good, it might do some. When you talk about shovel-ready, just about the only thing shovel-ready in this country is the people who are so obese, they're two steps away from the grave, and that is a serious health problem. So at least there is some social good that we're doing here. But from a stimulus point of view, it's crazy.
Quentin Hardy: This is supposed to help save money on health care costs down the road. Stimulus has a place. It creates a basic good that everybody benefits from: road building, electrification, building out the internet, etc. So, let's do highway construction and Internet trenching, only picks and shovels, and we only hire the fat.
Stable Stocks for Unstable Market
Bill Baldwin: Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY)
Mike Ozanian: Vector Group (VGR)
Neil Weinberg: Dr Pepper Snapple (DPS)
Stephane Fitch: Walmart (WMT)
IMF Tells U.S. to Create National Sales Tax and Reduce Mortgage Tax Deductions: Should We Listen?
Tracy Byrnes, Fox Business Network: They have been planning it since they were voted in. They're are raising taxes. But the notion of the national sales tax is crazy. First, regressive tax. Second, we're an economy based 70 percent on consumption. People buy things to keep the economy going. I have no incentive to buy a home now. You are taking the only thing left from me. They were doing it from the get-go, and it doesn't matter who asked them, George Washington or Jesus, they were raising taxes no matter what they said.
Jonas Max Ferris, Maxfunds.com: Regressive taxes is maybe not what the doctor ordered. I'm not against the sales tax. It's easy to collect. Remove the income tax for the bottom half of the country and the mortgage deduction thing was a huge reason we had a giant housing bubble. The notion to buy $1 million of house and deduct mortgage payments is a ridiculous thing. So simplifying, bringing in the sales tax. This has purposes and easy to administer.
John Layfield, nutritionmarket.com: It's the last thing that it needs. IMF said this, Angela Merkel, E.U., China said this. The entire world is lecturing us right now and making fun of us because we're the only people in the entire developed world that is not addressing our debt. The U.K. prime minister cut 25 percent across the board. We in turn instead of saying we'll cut debt, we increase spending the greatest amount in the history of the planet. We are using FDR as a model. Remember, FDR took a straight head-long to a 1937 recession that only World War II got us out. Somewhere we have to be responsible. Not the tax side but the morons have to quit spending… period.
Mark Levine, radio talk show host: What is World War II? It's spending, high government spending. It went above GDP in World War II and the reason why the government spending gets you out of recession, you have a lot of unused resources in a recession. You spend money and then comes the multiplier effect. People have more money in their pockets and they can spend. We have monetary policy at the hilt. We already have the lending money at close to zero. We need a fiscal stimulus now to get the deficit down in the future.
Wayne Rogers, Wayne Rogers & Co.: I don't think you have to listen to the IMF. IMF is only giving you advice. Nobody says you have to take it, for God's sake. We're a sovereign nation. Every nation is. IMF serves as a person that lends money, that's what they do when nations are in trouble to help bail them out. What do we care what the IMF says, number one? Number two, we don't have a budget in the country. Nancy Pelosi refuses to bring a budget to the floor of the House of Representatives. We can't have a budget. We don't know why we are doing it. We have people up there morons who have been elected like John says, it's our fault. This whole thing about the taxing is immaterial. With a do you say, Jonas, about getting rid of the housing deduction is wrong. That's a help. It builds the economy and builds a infrastructure. It's a good tax.
Jonathan Hoenig, Capitalistpig.com: Wayne, it also artificially props up the housing prices. I know you are against the government intervention in the housing market, Freddie, Fannie, community reinvestment act and the mortgage deductibility is the same thing. To this extent, the IMF is onto something. Unfortunately, they are proposing a laundry list of other idiotic taxes, bank taxes, bonus taxes, and, of course, that's all on top of the income tax, progressive income tax we already pay, but the panel is on to something here. What killed Europe wasn't the tax structure, it was the entitlement spending. That's what needs to come to an end. It's not going to.
AFL-CIO Demanding Department of Homeland Security Cut Ties With Arizona Police Over Immigration Policy
Jonathan Hoenig: Law enforcement is really the most important function of government. And the AFL-CIO once again in my opinion kind of thinks justice turns into mob rule. I mean they are so advocating so hard for rights of undocumented citizens and this is a group at almost at every occasion tramples over the rights of bank executives, oil executives, and to fight the political battle by withholding funding or cutting ties with law enforcement, to me is perverse.
Wayne Rogers: I'm all for it. You know why? Because the AFL-CIO by pressing the government to do this, that's money the government, the federal government will not spend. That's terrific! Because Arizona's doing a better job, the government is not doing anything anyway, they're wasting the money. They can't seal the borders. They ought to go home on this. Let the states handle it. The states are better off doing it. Arizona is absolutely right in doing what they're doing, and I'm all for this so it will save us all some money.
John Layfield: Yeah, but look at what president Obama has done. He's bought and paid for by the unions 100 percent. Look what he has done with the autos. Look what he has done with health care. Look at what he did with the Jones Act in the gulf, not protecting millions of Americans because he took care of the union. He has shown, President Obama, he is willing to change the law, break the law, or bend the law. Whatever he needs to do to take care of the unions he has done it repeatedly and he will do it again. The problem is not the union, not the Arizona police department. The problem here is that border and that Americans are unsafe through traveling near to that border. We need to do something to protect them. All the messing with the unions back and forth and the lawsuit going back and forth does nothing to help the American people, but it's status quo for the administration.
Mark Levine: I don't think it's the right thing to do. The problem with the law, with the Arizona law is the constitution of the United States. This is the problem. It's against the constitution! Which says you have to have a federal role and federal role only for immigration. Arizona can't go it alone. So now the unions are telling the federal government to step away from Arizona. The problem with Arizona is they don't work with the feds.
Jonas Max Ferris: It's like teenagers who take an allowance and then they don't want to come home at 10:00 At night and want to stay out late because you're not cool. Obama should cut funding. Instead of going to court like an intellectual to prove that we're right. When Nixon passed the 55 speed limit law he cut the funds off. I don't agree with the law but that's how you get stuff done. When Reagan wanted the drinking age to be 21, which is unconstitutional, he made the states do it by cutting off funding. If Obama wants to push states around cut off the money because they're kids taking money.
Tracy Byrnes: Look at what it's doing to the country. What happened to one nation under God. Now we're 50 islands making up the own rules. This is "Lord of the Flies." Someone will come kill each other at the end of the day. This is a country supposed to be united. Blame the president or the unions or whoever you want but we need to come together and secure the border.
New Fears BP Oil Spill Will Bring New Tax (Superfund Tax) to Job Creators
Wayne Rogers: The superfund before, which was not a bad idea, but in the implementation of the superfund before and the same problem you will have again, when you tax any business making over $2 million a year, that's insane. It will hurt the economy and it will hurt everything else. Yes, it may be good for the environment but you are going to pay for it more in the long run, particularly if you let the federal government run it. Outrageous.
Mark Levine: The question is not if it is going to be paid for but who will pay for it. If someone dumps sludge in my backyard I want them to pay for it, not me. The taxes are focused on oil. 30 percent of the superfund sites are abandoned sites. They go out of business and you know who pays for it? You and me.
Jonathan Hoenig: The new tax doesn't punish polluters. It punishes anyone, business making over $2 million a year in revenue but traffics in any of the chemicals, oil, gas. This creates, this law that treats them as polluters.
John Layfield: I don't have any idea what the administration hates about big business but apparently they do. They are going after banks and they will put punitive tax on banks and they tried to go after Wal-Mart. Now going after the oil companies. This has nothing to do with a clean-up. Don't say it has to do with the environment. This has something to do with a windfall profit tax and telling people if you make money in the country, you must be evil. Therefore, we'll take the money from you.
Tracy Byrnes: To John's point, not big business. $2 million in a top line is not a lot. The bottom line could be $300,000 after you pay everything. So you are talking about hitting little small businesses as well. It's not just down on big business. It's anti-business in general.
Jonas Max Ferris: You act like they don't clean up the stuff because there is no tax. Bottom line, superfund out there making the ordinary taxpayers pay for it. Someone has to pay for the environmental damage. We got lucky a wealthy company made a massive leak. What would have happened if it was "rinky-dink" company that went bankrupt? Who'd pay for it? We have to have someone to pay for it somehow. Not fair to tax clean chemical company but you have to have a plan to pay for environmental damage, some of it is not in someone's backyard. That is the problem. It's sitting there in the desert and no one owns it and you have to clean it.
What I Need to Know for Next Week
Tracy Byrnes: Climate bill is coming. They'll tell you it will only cost families $150 a year. It will reduce deficit by $19 billion over ten years. Don't buy the numbers. Watch your wallets.
John Layfield: LeBron James wanted to create a super team in Miami, but he also wanted to avoid high taxes in places like New York. If you have a tax system that punishes business. Then business goes elsewhere. Invest in companies that have multi-national exposure like Coca-Cola (KO).
Jonas Max Ferris: Lindsay Lohan going to jail for 90 days. Good for companies that own correctional facilities like (GEO).
Wayne Rogers: State and local governments going crazy with spending. The Illinois governor passed out 20 percent pay increases to his staff. Watch your bond portfolio.
Jonathan Hoenig: World Cup soccer and Dutch adult film star makes (NTT) a hot buy.