If this is mid-October, there must be a new GOP frontrunner for the Presidency and if NBC/Wall Street’s latest poll is accurate, the Baggers’ version of the Chuck E. Cheese birthday crown has now been placed on the head of Herman Cain.

It’s not surprising that Cain, who basks in his ignorance, prejudice and intolerance as positive traits has Baggers nodding, “He’s just like me…except how come he’s black?”

With the Mainstream Media chasing conservative attention like a needy best friend, they have swiftly elevated Cain to a position of importance, whether or not he is a babbling fool who thinks that facts are the same as being stubborn and having opinions. Then again…whoever excels most in that might typically be in the lead of the GOP presidential campaign.

As was evidenced in this week’s debate, Herman Cain’s “9-9-9” plan, though he’s produced no economic materials or substantial details, is being viewed by the MSM as a serious plan. It’s as if he’s promised unicorn rides to all American and instead of questioning the existence of unicorns, all the MSM is asking is when they get their turn to ride.

Ever since there have been wealthy people who have wanted to crush the poor and middle class under a regressive tax burden, so they could pay less, there have been flat tax proposals.

The insidious thing about flat tax proposals is how their utter simplicity fools reasonable people. If someone said, “The fairest way to tax people is to get rid of all deductions and make everyone pay exactly the same 9% in income and sales taxes!”, it doesn’t sound terribly unreasonable at first. One has to start looking at specifics as opposed to generalities to truly understand the social disaster such a plan represents.

Let’s begin with the wealthy:

In 2008, the top earning 400 paid an effective federal income tax rate of 18.11%, up from a record low 16.62% in 2007, when an even higher share of their total income came from capital gains.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/janetnovack/2011/05/11/richest-400-took-record-share-of-capital-gains-during-market-meltdown-year/

Now, these whining buckets of greed, who howl at paying the top rate of 34%…but are in fact paying only 18%…want their taxes cut in half to 9%. Imagine the massive loss of revenues to our government that would entail. However could we subsidize this enormous tax cut for the wealthy?

Good question, which brings us to the poor. Here is some info from the National Poverty Center:

2010 Poverty Thresholds, Selected Family Types

  Single Individual Under 65 years  $ 11,344
65 years & older  $ 10,458
  Single Parent One child  $ 15,030
Two children  $ 17,568
  Two Adults No children  $ 14,602
One child  $ 17,552
Two children  $ 22,113
Three children  $ 26,023


SOURCE: U.S. Bureau of the Census, Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2010, Report P60, n. 238, p. 61.

Poverty guidelines are a simplified version of poverty thresholds and are issued by the Department of Health and Human Services to determine financial eligibility for certain federal programs.  For more information on these guidelines, see the 2011 Federal Poverty Guidelines.

How many people were poor in 2010?

In 2010, 15.1 percent of all persons lived in poverty. The poverty rate in 2010 was the highest poverty rate since 1993. Between 1993 and 2000, the poverty rate fell each year, reaching 11.3 percent in 2000.

http://www.npc.umich.edu/poverty/

So, out of 309 million Americans, 47 million live in poverty. Unlike the convenient demonizing from the wealthy, these are not just lazy college drop outs and welfare queens, these include senior citizens, the handicapped and severely ill and most of all, children.

Consider the amounts in the chart above that these households bring in. Those who are poor struggle just to pay for food, rent and other necessities. They don’t pay federal income tax…because they’re poor and our government acknowledges that they can’t afford to do so. Many do however pay payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare, they pay state sales taxes and other fees and taxes.

Under this immoral 999 plan…they would instead have to pay 9% of the money that isn’t enough to lift them out of poverty, in income tax. If that isn’t bad enough, the price of everything they buy, baby formula and baby food, diapers, eggs, milk, butter, bread, etc. suddenly costs them 9% more in federal sales tax (added to the existing state sales tax of course, for example, that would mean that they and everyone in CA would pay 17.75% in tax on everything they buy).

Unlike the wealthy who have plenty of income for investing and saving, the poor spend the money they earn. So a federal sales tax would be applied to most of their income whereas it would only be applied to a fraction of the wealthy’s income.

The true impact on the poor would be explosive and devastating. Already barely able or not fully able to make ends meet, the poor would have up to 18% more of the already minimal income they bring in, taken away from them. Millions will simply not be able to afford food and shelter anymore, let alone medical and child care expenses.

Meanwhile, someone in the top 1% making a billion dollars a year saves $900,000 in income tax. Oh, and the Cain plan also eliminates the Capital Gains tax which is how many of the wealthiest people receive much of their income…meaning they will pay 0% income tax on what, for many of them, is most of their income. And what’s that you say, at least when they die they’ll have to pay an Inheritance Tax? Nope, Cain’s flat tax also eliminates that tax so a wall is built around the wealthy to cement their towering wealth in place.

Welcome to the 1%’s America.

As we’ve heard from the GOP Meme Machine, 47% of Americans don’t pay federal income tax. Though the poor will be the hardest hit victims of such a scheme, even those making around the median household income in America will be hammered.

The average U.S. household income in 2010 was $49,445 (typically the combined income of two adults). A majority of households making that amount or less pay little or no federal taxes but as described above, they pay state taxes, property taxes, payroll taxes, etc..

So, all of those Americans whose income has stagnated under the corporate class warfare of the past decades, which in fact means that due to inflation most Americans are making less each year, would also be hit by a 9% rise in everything they buy and a 9% loss of their current earnings.

As if this is not bad enough, consider what happens if the only taxes being paid are sales and income taxes. No more payroll taxes mean no more Social Security and Medicare for Americans. Not even a privatization of the safety net, Herman Cain’s flat tax eliminates the social safety nets completely.

As Lawrence O’Donnell pointed out yesterday, Herman Cain’s website actually states that he would end Social Security and Medicare:

For the generations or workers who have paid into Social Security and Medicare, the federal government’s inevitable failure to pay them as they retire is undeniably stealing. These are generations who have worked and sacrificed to leave this country a better place for their children and grand children as they retire. The current behavior of an out of control federal government does little to ease their minds.

The federal government has imposed expensive and often counter-productive social and welfare programs on the states and the people. It is time to admit the mistakes, and get the federal government out of the way. This will allow states, cities, churches, charities and businesses to offer a helping hand instead of a handout where they live. People closest to the problems are the best ones to solve the problems effectively.

https://www.hermancain.com/the-issues (click the Entitlements tab).

Yep, that’s right. Not only would everything that seniors buy cost 9% more, including medicine, health care, food, etc…but they wouldn’t even have any money to pay for anything anyway since they wouldn’t get Social Security checks anymore.

When future seniors need heart surgery or cancer treatment, well, according to Cain, the local church or hardware store will surely be happy to take care of that for them.

Lastly, as was explained in the debate, Bloomberg did an analysis on Cain’s plan and concluded that it would bring in 10% less than the $2.2 trillion in taxes brought in last year. So, under Cain’s plan, another $200 billion would need to be chopped out of the budget…and without Social Security to borrow from anymore, a greater amount more would have to be cut.

America would be torn apart at the seams with privation and desperation on every street in America.

It is literally insane that the arguable GOP front runner for President of the United States wants to wreak such havoc on America and the MSM just gives him a nod.

Indie Voters were swayed by the hysteria of the right over the Affordable Care Act that was actually about insuring many people who couldn’t get coverage. And yet, now when there’s a plan being floated that would destroy Social Security and Medicare, crush the poor, plunge most Americans deeper in debt so that the wealthy can keep more of their money and underfund the US which would send our economy into a disastrous Depression…the perpetrator is treated with greater respect.

The bright spot to all of this is that Herman Cain will never be elected President. He hasn’t the smarts or philosophies that would appeal to anyone outside of the hateful, pro-greed base in the Republican party.

However, attention should be paid to this flat tax plan, if at least to enlighten and educate people as to the threat a flat tax poses, the ruthlessness of the GOP and the top 1%, how openly brutal they want to be towards the majority of Americans and how callously they would destroy the lives of millions of Americans once again, out of their insatiable greed.

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ADONAI
Member

I’d have to research it but this may be the dumbest economic strategy ever proposed by a Presidential candidate.

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javaz
Member

Cain compares SSI to slavery

It took our nation nearly 250 years to end slavery and live up to the self-evident truth that all men are created equal. It should not take us another 250 years to cease the involuntary negative return most working people receive from Social Security, or the involuntary servitude imposed by the oppressive income tax code.

In another column entitled “Separate Water Fountains,” Cain said the Social Security system “by its very nature discriminates against black men and women.” With their “unconscionable” refusal to implement private accounts, Democratic “so-called black leaders” want to see “the next generation of Blacks remain in economic slavery on the Democratic plantation“:

It is now evident that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 did not apply to the Social Security system. Due to the rising retirement age, differences in life expectancy between Blacks and Whites, and mandatory payroll tax deductions, the system by its very nature discriminates against black men and women.[…]

Perhaps most unconscionable is the opposition to personal retirement accounts by the NAACP, the Congressional Black Caucus, and many of our nation’s so-called black leaders. Personal retirement accounts would provide future generations of Blacks the retirement security their parents and grandparents never had.

Instead, black Democratic leaders are willing to see the next generation of Blacks remain in economic slavery on the Democratic plantation, so long as they can deny any Republican a perceived political victory.

http://thinkprogress.org/

Also, Cain is now touting the 9-0-9 plan instead of the 9-9-9 plan

Herman Cain came to Detroit on Friday to defend his signature tax plan against the attacks its suffered from all sides since he rose to frontrunner status in the GOP presidential primary. And he did it by publicly dropping one of his 9s for the poorest Americans.

Cain’s vision for a 9% corporate income tax, 9% personal income tax and 9% sales tax helped skyrocket him to the top of the GOP presidential field after Rick Perry stumbled over his immigration past. But as the frontrunner spotlight has shown on Cain and his plan, flaws have begun to emerge.

His fellow Republican candidates jumped all over the plan at Tuesday night’s debate in Las Vegas, attacking Cain for raising taxes on some (as he admits his plan will do) and opening up a new potentially exploitable revenue stream to the federal government by way of that 9% sales tax.

In Detroit Cain said, as he’s said before, that the people who are hating on 9-9-9 just don’t understand it.

“I know that you’ve heard a lot of disinformation about 9-9-9,” Cain said. “Don’t believe it. Look it up for yourself.”

Cain said fears of the government abusing that new sales tax by raising it ever higher ignore one thing: Cain himself.

“One of the reasons they aren’t going to turn 9-9-9 into something else anytime soon,” Cain said, “[is] Number one, I’m going to be president. And I’m not going to sign it.”

As for the raising taxes on poorer Americans, Cain said those at or below the poverty line were never going to live with the 9-9-9 plan. All along, he said, the plan doesn’t include income taxes for poorest Americans.

“If you are at or below the poverty level, you’re plan isn’t 9-9-9,” Cain said. “It’s 9-0-9. Say Amen, y’all.”

http://2012.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/10/herman-cain-defends-9-9-9-by-dropping-one-of-the-9s.php?ref=fpb

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bito
Member

Cain on reading his “Plan”

“features a platform to launch properly structured Empowerment Zones to renew our inner cities.”

Oh I feel like such a dunce, sorry Herm I should have figured out that one line means that some people won’t pay with your 999 plan. Anymore “hidden jewels you would like to explain?
I was never afraid of clowns as a child, but I’m beginning to have that phobia with this circus. I wonder if they will all pile into an old VW bug at the the next debate?

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javaz
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Nirek
Member

I think you are correct and he’s just trying to sell books.

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KillgoreTrout
Member

Bwaaaaaaaaa! This guy is a real piece of work! An “involuntary negative return from SS?” Please Herman, explain that if you will.

Increase in the retirement age? Hey Herman, that’s a GOP idea, not a democratic one.

Herman, how much do you pay your employees? Enough to have a secure retirement? Wasn’t Cain the guy who wants to do away with the minimum wage?

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bito
Member

Seems that this is not the first time that Mr.Cain’s math wasn’t understood or others calculations were “just wrong.”

Herman Cain debates Bill Clinton

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=ptrTa8C_Pl4

http://thinkprogress.org/yglesias/2011/10/20/349369/health-care-and-small-business/

I have read a couple of articles on the reasons for Mr.Cain’s “sucess” with both Burger King in Philly and Godfather’s was because he closed down the less profitable stores, not the unprofitable but the less. When he was at BK he closed close to 1/3 of the outlets which means he dumped on 1/3 of the employees for 2-3% more profit. Same with Godfather’s.
Is that the way he plans to turn around the unemployment numbers?

The Job Creators my bum.

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PatsyT
Member

Herman Cains Used Food Emporium !!!

httpsh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gez_WpG3Mqk&feature=youtu.be

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bito
Member

Hilarious Patsy, but I’m a bit pissed that I didn’t copyright that the other day when I posted that idea on TO/OT. Oh, you mean some one else is smart as I am? 😆

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PatsyT
Member

Only the rare few Bito, only the rare few

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bito
Member

Ah, but can they match my looks, Patsy?

[img]http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/5/5b/John_C_Calhoun-.jpg/220px-John_C_Calhoun-.jpg[/img]

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PatsyT
Member

No Bito, Not if you look like that!
I don’t know what to say…
What presence!
What hair!
What an outfit!
You are so distinguished and refined!

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bito
Member

I taught Michelle Bachmann how do do those eyes!

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funksands
Member

Patsy, I heard this on the radio and my car nearly went off the road I was laughing so hard. Thankfully my driver has quick reflexes. 😉

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PatsyT
Member

You are going to have to use headphones so your driver can concentrate on the road!

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Emerald1943
Member

Hi Adlib!

Thanks for a great article that takes this silly plan apart! This man is a blithering idiot IMO! He’s great with the bumper sticker stuff, but that’s as far as he goes! No deeper than that! He almost makes Michelle Bachmann look smart!

It ain’t gonna’ happen…he will never be President! However, I would love to see him go up against President Obama in a debate. PBO would eat his lunch for sure. Current polls show the President up by 11 points on Cain.

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KillgoreTrout
Member

Hey Em. Cain says it would be no contest between himself and Obama, in a debate. He says he would definitely win because he knows what it’s like to be “po,” before he was “poor.” (he actually said this)
But, I guess Cain is forgetting that Obama was raised by a single mother and his grandmother and had to face the same prejudices and barriers as Cain did.
I guess Cain IS right in a way. It WOULD be no contest. Obama would wipe the floor with Cain.

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Emerald1943
Member

Hey KT! I would love to see a debate between Cain and President Obama…only it would be so demeaning to the President!

This guy is so over his head!

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KillgoreTrout
Member

Em, I really would like to see that. Although, it would be like a pro football linebacker kicking the crap out of a twelve year old. But Cain is so cocky and full of himself, I wouldn’t have an ounce of pity for him. 😉

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javaz
Member

Warren Buffett would pay ZERO income tax under Cain’s 9-9-9 plan.

If the “9-9-9” tax plan promoted by Herman Cain, a leading Republican presidential candidate, had been the law of the land last year, Warren Buffett would very likely have paid no income taxes, according to an analysis prepared for Yahoo News and The Lookout by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. At most, Buffett would have paid taxes on just 1 percent of his income.

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/warren-buffett-likely-pay-no-income-taxes-under-215446867.html#more-17358

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James Michael Brodie
Member

Cain is little more than Alan Keyes with a bit more funding. He is not what the GOP will put forward for president, but he does give the Right a chance to take a few racist potshots at Obama.

Let’s be honest: Cain can say things that would scuttle a campaign coming from a White politician. When the GOP is done with Cain, he, like Keyes, will go away.

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foodchain
Member
foodchain

JMBrodie! Alan Keyes is why Obama was elected senator from IL and then to President! Let’s hope that he creates as much success for the Democrats.

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James Michael Brodie
Member

Truly. Let’s see history repeat.

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KillgoreTrout
Member

Hey JM, long time no see. I agree whole heartedly.

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James Michael Brodie
Member

Hey, my friend. Good to be back. Need to come “home” sometimes to get re-grounded… 🙂

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KillgoreTrout
Member

Well, this is the place to get “re-grounded.”

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choicelady
Member

After listening to him yet again, my reaction:

9-9-9?

Nein, nein, nein!

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foodchain
Member
foodchain

and I love the “nein, nein, nein”

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foodchain
Member
foodchain

CL (if I may be so bold); let’s turn him on his -ss and make him 666 hwere he really belongs.

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KillgoreTrout
Member

Ha! Nyet, Nyet, Nyet!

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bito
Member

Just saw a clip of Cain saying the beauty of his plan it’s simplicity, which reminds me of this quote:

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.
H. L. Mencken

http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/h/hlmencke129796.html

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choicelady
Member

LOL!!! Remember he ALSO thinks NO federal legislative bill should be longer than three pages. NONE. Since they are written with about quadruple spacing for marking up by legislators on committees, that would make his legislation sort of the Dick and Jane version of ideas.

Wonder how we’d do budgets and appropriations? Could be amusing.

I don’t like to say this, but he gives a REALLY bad name to corporate America – that man is a dumb as a post. I’m surprised Godfather’s and Burker King are still in business.

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agrippa
Member
agrippa

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Godfather's_Pizza

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2011/jun/10/did-herman-cain-turn-around-godfathers-pizza/

Pizza is not on my list favorite food; it is ok.

What ‘turning around’ a medicre pizza company has to do with being president is a mystery to me. Apparetly though, not to him.

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SueInCa
Member

Adlib
I just sent this to a friend of mine who is claiming she believes in a flat tax. I responded to her with the facts on the 999 but forgot all about the state taxes. She lives in NV so does not pay state tax(probably a reason for her stance) but she would be paying the sales tax almost doubled, plus the personal tax. this is a much more indepth explanation to give her. thanks for the work you just did for me.

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Emerald1943
Member

Hi Sue!

Sorry to be so late with a comment…under the weather for a couple of days, but better late than…oh well, whatever!

Cain was asked in an interview about the state sales taxes that would not go away when the 9% national tax was instated. He said that the question was “muddying the water” and a totally different issue. He completely side-stepped the question and refused to answer. I personally think it was over his head! This man is dumber than a box of rocks! I really don’t think that the state taxes had even occurred to him!

At present, in NC we have a state sales tax of 7.25%. This would mean that the poor would be paying 16.25% on everything they purchase, even food. I would be really frightened if I thought that this idiot had any chance of winning, but it’s not going to happen, no matter how confident he is right now. You gotta’ give him props for arrogance though! 🙂

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Caru
Member

The idea of a flat tax goes against one of the most basic tenants of economics:

Another dollar is worth less to a millionaire than to someone making $20,000 a year.

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KillgoreTrout
Member

“Another dollar is worth less to a millionaire than to someone making $20,000 a year.”

Absolutely right on Caru! That is absolutely true.

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choicelady
Member

Mr. Cain makes NO issue of his religion which OUGHT to be refreshing – I have no clue what he is – except it also means he could easily be very extremist. It would be in keeping with the secular ideas he has – don’t blame banks, blame yourself – in asserting an embedded inequality where those at the bottom are not only entire at fault for their status but entirely unworthy of help.

The 9-9-9 plan (and take note that this is the emergency number in London, UK) punishes people for being middle class and poor. It makes them pay more than the rich because, well, we are burdens to the rich. Burdens must shoulder penalties!

Cain’s message to Americans:

“Don’t blame the banks for your condition! Blame yourself! Then TAX yourself to the MAX for being a failure! Vote 999 so the rich can pocket what they made off of you – and you can support them which is all you deserve. Losers!”

Have you noticed that, around the eyes, he resembles JP Morgan…?

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SueInCa
Member

He is a Baptist CL. Leah claims he is also a dominionist of which I have no doubt at all.

Oh, and I forgot, a carnival barker in his spare time.

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choicelady
Member

Oh I can well believe it, but he’s running as a stealth Dominionist. THAT is very scary! His rap is definitely theirs – don’t blame Wall Street, blame yourself.

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SueInCa
Member

Yes, he is stealthy about it. I am watching him closely for the signs. I already did a wiki on him for associations but that did not turn up much so I will keep digging. My bet is he is going to be more stealthy so he does not run into the issues that Perry did.

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bito
Member

Two views. One from the NYT and one from the WSJ, neither one that gets to the meat of the plan IMO.

NewsHour NewsHour
What is the 9-9-9 tax plan? @NYTimes ow.ly/6WCWN + @wsj ow.ly/6WCXW have more info #HermanCain

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