Author Topic: Now...it's all about the spending  (Read 6612 times)

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sirs

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Now...it's all about the spending
« on: January 03, 2013, 04:38:52 PM »
Now that we have the ridiculousness of increased taxes as 1 side of the supposed "balanced approach", Obama kept repeating needed to be implimented to deal with the raging debt, time to put up.....

Enjoy the communal sigh of relief while it lasts, America.  Sure, the endlessly-discussed "fiscal cliff" has been averted thanks to a flawed, 13th-hour deal -- but the high-stakes partisan wrangling is just beginning.  We'll get to the road ahead in a moment, but first, a word or two about the compromise itself.  Let's stipulate right out of the gate that it stinks.  It was jammed through in late night votes at the last possible minute, it scratches the Left's "fairness" itch to no constructive end, and the CBO calcluates its tax hike to spending cut ratio is roughly 41 to 1.  Pathetic.  Nevertheless, Phil Klein captures things pretty well with his appraisal of the deal as "objectively bad, but relatively good."  He runs through the handful of reasons why it isn't an unvarnished disaster:
 
At the start of 2013, income taxes were scheduled to go up on nearly every American, but if this deal becomes law, roughly 99 percent of taxpayers would be protected from those tax hikes. For over a decade, Democrats opposed the Bush tax cuts and prevented them from becoming permanent. Now, they have voted overwhelmingly to preserve about 84 percent of the dreaded cuts, which for years they demagogued as only benefitting the very rich. Lawmakers also agreed on permanent changes that minimized the tax increases on estates and capital gains. In addition, the deal permanently prevented the Alternative Minimum Tax (originally passed in 1969 to capture a small number of rich households who were avoiding taxes) from hitting tens and millions of Americans. From a more technical standpoint, this also means that the deal locks in a Congressional Budget Office revenue baseline that will be as low as possible. So, if future Republicans propose real tax reform, we won’t end up with estimates saying that their proposals would cost trillions of dollars, because such proposals will no longer be judged against an unrealistic baseline that assumes all of the Bush tax cuts would otherwise expire and open the floodgates to new revenue. A less publicized but still significant positive from the deal is that it formally repeals the CLASS Act, a long-term care entitlement that is part of Obama’s national health care law. There’s a lot to hate in this deal, no doubt. But any honest assessment of it must grapple with the reality of Obama as president, Harry Reid as Senate Majority Leader and $4.5 trillion in automatic tax hikes hitting in the new year. With this in mind, I’d rate the deal as objectively bad, but relatively good


I'd again emphasize that the Bush tax rates on 99 percent of Americans are now permanent.  House Republican leadership fractured on the question of final passage, with Paul Ryan, Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Boehner himself voting aye (Speakers rarely cast votes), and Eric Cantor and Kevin McCarthy voting no.   The GOP's rank and file opposed the bill by nearly a 2-to-1 margin, with a handful of Democrats joining the "no" crowd.  Thus, most tallies in favor of sending the bill to the president's desk came from Democrats; Boehner shelved the House's "majority of the majority" rule of thumb to allow an up-or-down verdict on the bill.  Will this fuel an internecine revolt against him, or are most members willing to forgive their cornered leader's power play -- particularly after the pre-Christmas "plan B" fiasco?  We'll know soon enough.  The new Congress is sworn in today, and the Speaker election is expected around noon.  Rumors of Boehner's demise may have been premature.  We'll see.   Meanwhile, the president has returned to Hawaii to resume his vacation...at an additional cost of $3 million to John Q. Taxpayer.

Which brings us to what lies ahead.  Obama delivered a useless, petulant, counter-productive speech on New Year's Eve, which incensed House Republicans and threatened to derail the ongoing McConnell/Biden negotiations.  (Sidebar: It's noteworthy that once Harry Reid left the room, a deal finally got done).  Obama's remarks weren't merely about gloating, base-pandering, and demagoguery -- which are all staples of the president's rhetorical repertoire, of course.  No, they seemed primarily designed to lay the groundwork for the next round of cliff-esque drama, due in February or March.  For all his gloating about Republicans being forced to permit Democrats to enact some tax rate increases, he quickly cautioned that forthcoming deliberations over debt reduction would also require "revenue" increases on "the rich" and "large corporations."  This was Obama's unsubtle way of warning Republicans that he'll be demanding even more tax increases this winter when the debt ceiling debate sets this city aflame.  Also keep in mind that the new cliff compromise kicks the controversial sequestration cuts down the road for two more months. The automatic sweeping cuts that were to be the legally-mandated consequence of a "Super Committee" failure to settle on a spending cut package have been postponed.  That failure is at hand, but the cuts are not.  Surprise.  So the central spending reduction gimmick from the last debt ceiling deal has thus far resulted in zero cuts, and has been shoved off yet again...as another debt ceiling brawl is looming because we've already blown through those additional trillions.

This, I think, provides a real opening for Republicans to finally regain their political footing.  Obama and his Congressional allies exploited the GOP's unpopularity and internal chaos to force tax rate increases on "the rich."  Indeed, Washington just birthed a dreadful bill that postpones the only real spending cuts on the table and jacks up taxes.  It's a fairnesspalooza.  But it will accomplish nothing.  We'll still have a massive deficit, our debt will continue to swell, and the $600 Billion in anticipated revenues over ten years are already slated to head right out the door in the form of new spending.  When we hit our debt ceiling this winter (we've technically already done so), the American people will be treated to yet another political spectacle, replete with the now-familiar warnings about our nation's credit rating, hysterical threats about a government shutdown, and a ticking clock.  This is what the "Doc Fix Economy" hath wrought: Rather than engaging in standard budgeting -- as Congress is required to do -- Democrats have ushered in a new era of budget-free governance, resulting in a maddening parade of recurring, man-made "emergencies."  It's throughly dysfunctional, and the cycle must be broken.  If and when Obama resurrects his class warfare/more taxes schtick in a few months, Republicans can occupy the high ground by pointing to the fiscal cliff and advancing actual solutions:

You've gotten your pet tax hikes, Mr. President.  The last batch of meaningful spending cuts have been delayed.  Our deficits remain out of hand.  Our official debt is larger than our GDP, and our real debt is far, far worse.  We must fundamentally change our tax code.  We must reduce our spending.  And we must reform the largest long-term drivers of our debt, something that even you have acknowledged.  Tinkering at the margins with populist appeals about raising taxes on Daddy Warbucks won't cut it.  Those taxes already went up, despite our vehement objections.  You "won."  But now it's time for real solutions...

As they prepare for battle, every single Republican lawmaker should review and internalize the following exchange on MSNBC yesterday morning, in which Sen. Pat Toomey -- a conservative from Pennsylvania -- lays out this case clearly and articulately:
 
Sen. Toomey discusses the fiscal cliff on MSNBC's Morning Joe

Pitch perfect, detailed, and digestible for public comprehension.  More of this, please.


UPDATE - Ask and you shall receive.  Mitch McConnell lays down his markers in advance of the next debt punch-up:
 
Now that the House and Senate have acted in a bipartisan way to prevent tax increases on 99 percent of the American people, Democrats now have the opportunity—and the responsibility—to join Republicans in a serious effort to reduce Washington’s out-of-control spending. That’s a debate the American people want. It’s the debate we’ll have next. And it’s a debate Republicans are ready for. Despite the President’s call for more and more Americans to send even more of their paychecks to Washington, the federal government will still have another trillion-dollar deficit this year. But in the upcoming months, we will have the opportunity to put our country back on sound financial footing—and there’s no excuse not to seize it. The President claims to want a balanced approach to solve our problems. And now that he has the tax rates he wants, his calls for ‘balance’ mean he must join us in our efforts to achieve meaningful spending and government reform. We have an immediate opportunity to act: the debt ceiling. Washington’s credit card has reached its limit again, and the Senate majority must act on legislation early in February—rather than waiting until the last minute, abdicating responsibility and hoping someone else will step in once again to craft a last-minute solution for them. Once the Senate passes bipartisan legislation, we can conference with the House on a solution. But this time the entire Senate must have an opportunity to act

UPDATE II - No amount of tendentious presidential rhetoric or "fair share" fetishism can wash away this reality:



....or shut up
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

sirs

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2013, 06:31:23 PM »
Peas are all the rage when it comes to talking about the country’s fiscal woes.

You might remember that in July of 2011, when fighting over the debt ceiling, president Obama- right before he left for his 17th vacation at Martha’s Vineyard that year- complained about congressional inaction by saying that’s it time for the country “to eat its peas.”

From CBSNews:

"I've been hearing from my Republican friends for some time it is a moral imperative to tackle our debt and deficits in a serious way," Mr. Obama said. "What I've said to them is, let's go."
The president said today he would not accept a smaller, short-term deal. "We might as well do it now," he said. "Pull off the band aid. Eat our peas."

Of course the president and Congress refused to eat their peas then, preferring to put it off until after the presidential election. There were far too many sweets at the table going into an election year- and delicious pork too.   

But, now the election is over. Sweets are off the table; the congress is a lame duck even if still addicted to pork. And a deal has been FINALLY struck to “tackle our debt and deficits in a serious way.”

Just wait; this ought to be really funny.

Because now we have an idea just exactly how many peas Obama meant in 2011 when he said it was time to “eat our peas.”

Ahem.   

Here’s what he meant: one (1) pea.

Yum.  Thanks Congress! Thanks Mr. Obama!

Now we’re too full apparently for any more peas. Glad we’ve shown how serious we are about deficit reduction too.

At least that’s the take of Rick Santelli, the editor at CNBC, who helped create the Tea Party by his famous soliloquy calling for a Tea Party in Chicago reminiscent of the one that took place in Boston in 1773.

Back then Santelli was outraged by the administration’s proposals to bailout homeowners who were behind in their mortgages. He nailed the administration on encouraging bad behavior by trying to keep people in houses they couldn’t- and still can’t- afford.   

“We’re thinking about having a Chicago Tea Party in July,” shouted Santelli to cheers on the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange as CNBC host Joe Kernen made comments about mob rule. “All you capitalists that want to show up to Lake Michigan, I’m gonna organize it.”   

Now he’s taking on the deficit and runaway spending and the politicians who promote more reckless spending.

Earlier this year, the showman Santelli smashed melons with a large wooden mallet- ala the comedian Gallagher- to make a point to politicians about how easy it was to undertake deficit reduction.

“Smash some deficits, smash some deficits, smash some deficits,” he cried as the mallet mashed the melon meat until the juice flew.

Let’s just say that with those melons as a benchmark, Santelli is less than enamored of the newest, bestest deal out of congress and the president to reduce the deficit and cut down spending. 

As a result of the deal, Santelli this week held up one pea against a white board.

He then smashed it with a hammer.

“There’s our debt smashing for the end of the year,” said Santelli comparing it to the melons. “It’s basically a pea,” he added comparing the debt to the size of the Empire State Building.

“It’s pretty much about a tax deal. We have done all of this to arrive at an arrangement on taxes [by raising taxes without cutting spending].”   

No word yet if the pea is one missing from the White House.

But this much is certain: If it is, it won’t be missed by Obama.

He's already full of peas; or pea, as it were.

Seriously.

Send your pea- one (1) only- to: 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20006.
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

Plane

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2013, 08:16:27 PM »
So , is this a good time to produce a new spending cut or loophole closing bill?

Just a little one .

I am surprised that Pat Toomy thinks that the presidents new tax will be a 6% of the spending gap to the good, I would have guessed less.

  6% is pretty good if you don't stop there, find another 6%  of fix in closed loop holes or spending cuts and then find another 6% every six months.

A six percent improvment every six months would fix the problem of having deficit spending in about ten years.

sirs

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2013, 08:48:29 PM »
Twenty-three point nine trillion dollars.

That will be our national debt in 2022 under the fiscal-cliff bill that just passed Congress. That’s nearly $4 trillion more than the current-law baseline, and while most of that comes from making the Bush tax cuts permanent for most Americans without offsetting the loss of revenue through spending cuts, at least $330 billion of the new debt results from the increased spending that was part of the deal. Our government debt will amount to more than 118 percent of GDP.

So the deal not only fails to cut spending, it also simply tosses more money on top of the spending increases that were already built into future budgets. Now the federal government will spend $5.5 trillion in 2022, compared with $3.5 trillion this year. We will be spending $2 trillion more per year and facing $1.5 trillion more in debt than if federal spending were to rise commensurate with population growth plus inflation over the next ten years.

And this is only going to get worse after 2022, as entitlements, still unreformed after the cliff deal, explode. By 2050, our national debt will top $58 trillion in today’s dollars. That’s more than double what it would be if the increase in federal spending were limited to inflation plus population growth.

How did we end up with this epic failure? In part, it was because Republicans’ fixation on cutting taxes blinded them to the real threat to economic growth and freedom — the growing size of the federal government.

I would be among the first to agree that raising taxes is bad. Tax hikes take more money out of the productive sector of the economy and redistribute it to the non-productive governmental sector, slowing economic growth. The distortions in economic decision-making brought about by those taxes will slow growth and reduce prosperity even further.

But even more important, taxes appropriate the property that an individual has justly earned through his labor or ingenuity. Every dollar that the government takes from an individual is one less dollar that he or she can save, invest, or spend as he or she sees fit.

But simply paying for big government through debt rather than taxes is not an appreciable improvement. As Harvard’s Robert Barro points out, there is a “significantly negative relation between the growth of real GDP and the growth of the government share of GDP.” And, of course, our liberty is further constrained as a growing government takes up more and more space that once belonged to individuals and their choices.

Yet during the fiscal-cliff negotiations, Republicans were all too willing to forgo spending cuts as long as they were able to retain some additional tax cuts.

Republicans claim that, having disposed of the tax issue, they will now devote all their attention to securing spending reductions as part of the continuing-resolution and debt-ceiling negotiations to come. But President Obama is already laying the political groundwork for this debate, warning that Republicans will risk throwing the country into default over the debt ceiling in order to cut Social Security and Medicare. Will the GOP have the courage to insist on making the deep and painful cuts that will be required to restore us to fiscal sanity?

Forgive me for being skeptical, but not only did the last debt-ceiling agreement fail to actually cut spending (federal spending rose by $61.5 billion in the twelve months following that deal), the fiscal-cliff agreement undid two months’ worth, or $24 billion, of the sequestration cuts resulting from the debt-ceiling compromise. Indeed, congressional negotiators will spend the next two months looking for ways to undo the rest of the sequester.

“God put the Republican Party on earth to cut taxes,” the late columnist Robert Novak once noted. “If they can’t do that, they have no useful purpose.” Perhaps. But unless Republicans are willing to see that spending is every bit as big a threat to liberty and prosperity as taxes are, America is well on its way to becoming Greece.

The Spending Cliff
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

Plane

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2013, 09:04:21 PM »
  You hear that we are becoming Greece a lot these days, but we are not.

I wish we were, Greece has a friend in Germany and can get a lot of help in digging itself out.

Germany is like the biggest climber lashed to the others as they cross a glacier, if Greece falls into a cravasse Germany can belay untill Greece can cut steps and climb out again. Europe needs Germany to be big and conservative and stable.

The USA has a lot of climbing partners , we are attached to all the world , but unlike Greece none of the partners we are attached to has more than ten times our size and resorces.

If the USA falls into a Cravasse we are going to the bottom , and just about all of our friends are going to land on the top of us, we are the fat guy that all the rest together cannot belay. There in the cold dark deep under the ice we will have plenty of oppurtunity to recall all of our wasted oppurtunity.

sirs

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2013, 09:12:14 PM »
  You hear that we are becoming Greece a lot these days, but we are not.

Not that we are Greece, simply in that we are heading that direction, and with the last DC "compromise" worked out, we picked up some speed, on that road



The USA has a lot of climbing partners , we are attached to all the world , but unlike Greece none of the partners we are attached to has more than ten times our size and resorces.

Alas, as the debt worsens, and it will, folks like Germany & China, and many others will not see us for the good "investment" they think it is currently, and simply stop lending us money....at least not at the lower interests rates we're presently getting


"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2013, 10:49:35 PM »
Absolutely! And the first place to start cutting is entitlements. They can cut my SS and my VA compensation. I know vets that are getting 100% from the VA who shouldn't be getting one red cent. The problem though is that it isn't just the Democrats who have feet of clay when it comes to entitlements, the Republicans do to.

So, push your congressmen, tell them you are willing to take a cut on your entitlements, and lets get this show on the road.

BSB 

sirs

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2013, 01:18:17 AM »
Riiiiiiight,,,,,,,,like that's what's being advocated.  One always knows when a leftist is empty on substance...they make up for in extreme hyperbole.  Bravo
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

BSB

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2013, 01:36:38 AM »
That is what has to be done. It's the entitlements. I'm being dead serious.

What a shithead. You point out what has to be cut and the dipstick disagrees.   lol


BSB

sirs

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2013, 02:41:03 AM »
That is what has to be done. It's the entitlements. I'm being dead serious.

Yea, that does need reforming.  So who the hell is claiming it needs scrapped??  Not 1 red cent, you bellowed.  Nor is it simply entitlements, since there's a whole host of agencies and programs that we can seriously discuss their merits and appropriateness. 

Any time you wish to get "dead serious", with dicussions on how best they can be reformed, please send us a memo.  Until then, enjoy bathing in the idiocy of your hyperbole

"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

BSB

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2013, 02:55:41 AM »
You watching this BT? This is your fault. You kept this idiot around here.


BSB

sirs

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #11 on: January 04, 2013, 03:12:03 AM »
So, the one throwing the hyperbole is "the sane" one here?  The one trying to have a substantive "conversation"? Yea, riiiiiiigt.  As Bsb again reinforces, when lacking substance to a debate, throw hyperbole, and/or more personal insults

You know B, what would be a breath of fresh air, is instead of just sputtering insults, at anyone that doesn't support your ignorant tactics, back them up.  How am I an idiot?  How is Plane a phony?  How is Cu4, or any other conservative a moron?  Not just because you say so, but with actual examples.  That at least would be some effort of yours to "think" vs just spewing, since you've demonstrated pretty much squat ability to actual debate the issues being discussed, such as in this thread or any thread related to CCW's & guns
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

Plane

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #12 on: January 04, 2013, 06:47:16 AM »
  Not just because you say so, but with actual examples.


Be carefull what you wish for.

Plane

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #13 on: January 04, 2013, 06:55:48 AM »
     Entitlements are such a big budget item , and growing so , that no budget deal that totally preserves them has any hope of reduceing deficet spending.

      It may be politicly necessacery to cut a bit off of everything elese first but the growth of entitlements needs to stop and reverse because we basicly can't afford them as they are, let alone as they will be if they grow as projected.

     But it is going to cause a lot of pain as the people who are just marginally coping with their finances find the ground being cut from under them.

       Has our government the ability to cause widespread pain with even a mild austerity program?

sirs

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Re: Now...it's all about the spending
« Reply #14 on: January 04, 2013, 11:05:00 AM »
  Not just because you say so, but with actual examples.

Be carefull what you wish for.

hehe......they have to be credible examples.  Like if he were to try and use what's a military assault weapon.  He's going by looks and how a military person could use a weapon.  I'm going by the military definition, which includes the option of being able to select an automatic mode.  So that'd be a bogus example.  He could opine about how is "not necessary" that someone like me should have the ability to carry a weapon, yet I have empirical data & facts that demonstrate the increased safety and decreased death associated with people who carry.  So, I'm not afraid of his supposed superior say so, since most facts would debunk it.  However, I would be wholly curious as to any credible examples he might have
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle