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Different standards for Geitner and Daschle?

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Bonn1997 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 05:31 AM
Original message
Different standards for Geitner and Daschle?
Are there two different standards for them or is there more to the story than I'm aware of? I really like and admire our President but when he said it was important to demonstrate that there weren't two standards--one for people like Daschle and one for ordinary people--but kept Geitner in the Cabinet, it seemed logically incoherent to me.
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KharmaTrain Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 05:43 AM
Response to Original message
1. One Bitten Twice Shy...
Geitner's problems were smaller than Daschelle's and a lot easier to explain and reconcile. Geitner screwed up on his estimated payments and then didn't cover the shortfall...a common problem for those whose incomes fluxuate. Daschelle was a different animal...not reporting an employee's salary and then having to justify it. If anything it was the perception rather than the tax problem that did Daschele in. Last night at the end of the Daily Show, they showed a Daschele campaign commercial from 1983 showoing him using a beaten down car to get around Washington...a far cry from a Chauffer who was being paid 300k a year. Perceptions are always a big game in the beltway.

The standards are those of tolerance. Geitner was first...he got the "benefit of the doubt" from the corporate media. Daschele on the other hand was a moving target from the outset. He was a known commodity and while we hear of how many people "respect" and revere him, there were just as many quietly getting out the knives to take their turn. While Geitner's tax problems were embarassing, Daschele's were open game...you sure didn't have to do much to crank this one up on hate radio...Daschele was an old favorite target and he was back for more.

The final straw here was the revelation of yet another tax problem...the issue now was becoming a major distraction. Unfortunately President Obama set a high ethical bar and he's being held to it. At least he admitted such...a refreshing change to hear a President who actually assumes responsibility. This is gonna take some getting used to.

Cheers...
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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 08:32 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. You misstate Geitner's problem
In the four years that he worked for the IMF, he was suppose to pay payroll taxes for himself. He didn't - there are some that say that IMF does advice people on what they have to do, but let's give him the benefit of the doubt and say that that was an honest mistake in all 4 years. He was then audited and this was found for 2004. The IRS then found the same problem existed in 2003. He then paid the taxes and interest for 2003 and 2004. (He convinced them that it was unintentional so there was no penalty.) Now, he KNEW he had worked there 4 years and very likely knew he did exactly the same thing in 2001 and 2002. (If he didn't know, he knew it was a possibility - and it would likely take less than 10 minutes to check.) These years were outside the statue of limitations - so he knew that he would not be audited and in fact had he not been vetted for a cabinet position, he never would have been caught.

Now, to me the surest test of integrity is what you do when you know no one is looking. He was pure and simple a tax cheat at this point. To compound the matter, he told various Senators that he did not fail to fix 2002 and 2002 because he knew it was beyond the statue of limitations. That is lying at a confirmation. Obama should have withdrawn his name at that point.
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slipslidingaway Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 08:37 AM
Response to Reply #4
6. "Now, to me the surest test of integrity is what you do when you know no one is looking."
:thumbsup:

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KharmaTrain Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 08:43 AM
Response to Reply #4
8. Thank You For The Information...
I had read of his situation on TPM Muckraker and my point, too simply stated, was his problem was his own income rather than Dachele's which involved an employee. The point being the perception is that Dachele's problem (due to the larger dollar number) was a bigger problem than Geitner's.

You are correct in the questioning of Geitner's integrity. I have had similar questions myself as one who has filed quarterly and know that if I were a dollar off I'd get a nasty letter from the IRS. It doesn't give any comfort to think the man responsible for dealing with the worst economic crisis in decades has problems keeping his own books on the up and up. But what options are there? That seems to be where we're at and maybe he'll surprise us and restore some regulation and credibility to the Treasury.

Cheers...
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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 10:46 AM
Response to Reply #8
12. Also, on one of the other threads
Edited on Wed Feb-04-09 10:47 AM by karynnj
Kent Conrad, a former ND Tax Commissioner, pointed out that Daschle did not get a 1099 on the value of the car and driver. So, both his errors stemmed from others not giving him the proper documents and he moved to fix the situation when he found out. It means something to me that Kerry, whose integrity I trust, wrote the statement he did. When you step away from the hysteria, this is another case of destroying a reputation for integrity that was built over 30 years.

Here is Kerry's statement:
""I wish Tom Daschle had not decided to withdraw his nomination for Secretary of Health and Human Services. While Tom's decision is a reminder of his loyalty to President Obama and his determination not to be a distraction, this was no ordinary appointment and today is not a good day for the cause of health care reform. Tom brought a unique level of legislative skill and experience to this position in addition to his passion to achieve affordable health care for every American. Tom made it very clear he'd made a mistake and he took responsibility for it. I believe that when the smoke clears and the frenzy has ended, no one will believe that this unwitting mistake should have erased thirty years of selfless public service and remarkable legislative skill and expertise on health care. I know Tom Daschle well. I know his integrity and I respect his heart for this cause, and I know Tom will find other ways to contribute to this central mission."

Consider that unlike Obama, Kerry did not have to make a statement, but he chose to do so.
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liberal N proud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 05:47 AM
Response to Original message
2. Straw that broke the camels back
Also Daschle didn't get out ahead of this fast enough or something. It just didn't seem like he handled it as well.
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terisan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 07:39 AM
Response to Original message
3. Geithner was directly given money from the Int Monetary Fund to cover the employee tax
Edited on Wed Feb-04-09 07:41 AM by terisan
He pocketed the money and ignored quarterly statements and all other information from IMF telling him his tax responsibility. I don't see any confusion here.
Geither was the candidate of wall Street, big banks, Robert Rubin and Larry Summers--all of whom are complicit in the problems leading to bailout.

Geither made it through because he was deemed too necessary to the banks, to be rejected.

<http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123194884833281695.html >




WALL STRETT JOURNAL


By JOHN D. MCKINNON and BOB DAVIS

Timothy Geithner, whose nomination as Treasury secretary has been delayed by his past failure to pay taxes, was repeatedly advised in writing by the International Monetary Fund that he would be responsible for any Social Security and Medicare taxes he owed on income he earned at the IMF between 2001 and 2004.

Obama's Cabinet

Discuss: Are any of Obama's cabinet picks at risk of becoming a liability for the administration?
Questions about Mr. Geithner's initial failure to pay more than $34,000 in taxes are clouding his prospects for confirmation. The Senate Finance Committee postponed Mr. Geithner's confirmation hearing from a tentative Friday date to next Wednesday, which means President-elect Barack Obama will take office without a Treasury secretary amid the biggest financial crisis in decades.

Current and former IMF officials said the fund provided numerous warnings to U.S. employees about payroll taxes. According to IMF documents released by the Senate Finance panel, Mr. Geithner regularly received information about his tax obligations.

Mr. Geithner didn't make any Social Security or Medicare tax payments on his income during the years he worked for the IMF, though he did pay income taxes. After the Internal Revenue Service audited him in 2006 and discovered the payroll-tax errors, Mr. Geithner corrected them for 2003 and 2004. Only after Mr. Obama picked him for Treasury secretary last fall did Mr. Geithner pay the Social Security and Medicare tax he owed for 2001 and 2002.
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Bonn1997 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 09:16 AM
Response to Reply #3
11. "Geitner too necessary"...Fine but don't claim that there aren't two separate standards
Edited on Wed Feb-04-09 09:16 AM by Bonn1997
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TwilightGardener Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 08:36 AM
Response to Original message
5. Geithner went first--and he's more valuable in the grand scheme of things.
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ThomWV Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 08:56 AM
Response to Reply #5
9. I think that the 'going first' had the most to do with his pass
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Bonn1997 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 01:18 PM
Response to Reply #9
13. Even if there's an explanation, it's still unsulting to
tell us that the Daschle situation demonstrates that there aren't two standards. It's like they think we're too dumb or ill informed to remember the Geitner story. I still support and admire Obama but I wanted him to go further to clean out the corruption in government.
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anonymous171 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 08:43 AM
Response to Original message
7. I believe Daschle also had a conflict of interest
Whereas Geitner was just an idiot who "forgot" to pay his taxes.
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rucky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-04-09 08:58 AM
Response to Original message
10. Wall Street's standard.
Fear that the market will crash if Geitner's axed.
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