90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Dems And The Economy

Democrats on the economy.  Delegates and big guns on jobs and how they see an Obama second term.

In this Tuesday, June 19, 2012 photo, electrical contractor Howie Drees talks with foreman Don Irlbeck, left, on a job site in Carroll, Iowa. "I would say Obama and his staff stepped up and made some tough decisions and put some money out there and kept things moving," says Drees, who says up half the projects he's worked on in recent years involved federal funds. "I was happy to see someone actually try to stimulate the economy with low interest rates, instead of waiting until more damage was done." (AP)

In this Tuesday, June 19, 2012 photo, electrical contractor Howie Drees talks with foreman Don Irlbeck, left, on a job site in Carroll, Iowa. “I would say Obama and his staff stepped up and made some tough decisions and put some money out there and kept things moving,” says Drees, who says up half the projects he’s worked on in recent years involved federal funds. “I was happy to see someone actually try to stimulate the economy with low interest rates, instead of waiting until more damage was done.” (AP)

 

Barnburner speeches from fired-up Democrats and the First Lady last night.  They had the faithful roaring to the rafters in Charlotte. Sometimes, sitting on the rim of the action, we could barely hear our show for the din.  It was all Barack Obama as good man, and Mitt Romney as “bad Santa,” who would lay off his own reindeer for a profit, and outsource the elves.

But in and outside the hall, there is a lot of no-joke concern about the American economy.  And 8.3 percent unemployment.

This hour, On Point:  From Charlotte, Democrats and more on Obama, the economy, and the road ahead.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Karen Tumulty, national political correspondent at the Washington Post.

Neil Giuliano, Democratic delegate.

Linda Chapa LaVia, Democratic delegate.

Jared Bernstein, senior fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and former chief economist and economic policy adviser to Vice President Joseph Biden.

Andrew Biggs, resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.

From Tom’s Reading List

Slate “That was President Obama’s response to a question from a local Colorado TV reporter on Monday about what grade he thinks he deserves for how he handled the economy during his first term. We’ve embedded the clip below given that the “incomplete” quote is making the rounds online, and is already drawing fire from Republicans who say a president’s handling of the economy is a pass/fail proposition.”

Washington Post “Ignoring, for a moment, the fact that the economy isn’t as bad as it was in 1980, there’s a problem with Ryan’s rhetoric—his running mate doesn’t agree. Earlier this year, in an interview with conservative radio host Laura Ingraham, Mitt Romney agreed that the economy was in fact getting better:”

CNN “When the president entered office on Jan. 20, 2009, the economy was issue No. 1. It still is today. Here’s a look at where the economy stood then and what’s changed since.”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
  • Shag_Wevera

    America is in decline.  A long, painful, irreversible decline based on our artificially elevated standard of living from 1945-1980.  We cannot stop it, but we can mitigate it and soften the landing.  Invest at home and solidify the the social safety net.

    Labor around the globe is in decline.  I haven’t a clue what to do about that.  Too many people, too much technological productivity, and too few jobs.

    We must decide what we wish to become.  Do we wish to be Taiwan or Hong Kong, or do we want to be more like Scandinavia, Germany, and France.

    • jefe68

       Actually Taiwan has a very good health care system.
      One that our nation would do well to look too.

      • Gregg Smith

        Move there.

        • nj_v2

          Greggg drops to new levels of lameness.

        • Shag_Wevera

          I’m hoping some 1%er will get so sick of me that he/she will pay me to relocate my family to the Netherlands. 

          • Gregg Smith

            Good luck.

      • Shag_Wevera

        You are right.  China even has national health care.  Most nations living in the 21st century do. 

    • Gregg Smith

      I reject that. First, I favor an elevated standard of living. That Obama has ruined this nation and sucked hope to the point where you believe as you do is sad. 

      • Yar

        Gregg, an elevated standard of living is based on the exploitation of others.  Who are you willing to exploit to keep your ‘elevated standard of living.’
        Over half the world lives on less than 2 dollars per day. They would like an elevated standard of living as well.

        When I hear take back our country, I think about the arrowheads I find in my fields and get nervous that decedents of the Clovis people will send us back to Europe. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/0d/Clovis_Point.jpg/170px-Clovis_Point.jpg

        • Gregg Smith

          I have found many arrowheads on my land too. I love it!

          Lowering my standard of living will not help anyone. Raising it won’t hurt anyone. 

          • nj_v2

            Just when you thought Greggg couldn’t get any more clueless.

          • DrewInGeorgia

            Depravity has no bounds.

          • Gregg Smith

            My mama told me to finish my plate because there were starving kids in China. I finished my plate but the kids were still starving. I should have had to starve a little too so everyone could feel better.

          • Acnestes

             Maybe you should swallow some of those arrowheads.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

        “Ruined this nation”?

        Hahahaha. Your hyperbole is cute.

        • Gregg Smith

          Yea, ruined.

        • Gregg Smith

          Yea, ruined.

        • Gregg Smith

          Yea, ruined.

      • Shag_Wevera

        In 1945 we were the only intact industrial power on earth.  You could be solid middle class working in a can factory.  We’ll never have this again.  The rest of the world has rebuilt, developed, and caught up.  The can factory moved to Mexico, then China when the Mexicans wanted too much.  Someday it will be in Africa, when the Chinese workers want too much.

      • Don_B1

        The 1% have been elevating THEIR standard of living by not sharing the proceeds of increasing productivity, but firing workers then rehiring them at lower wages, sometimes as nearly half the previous wage. This is what economists call rent-seeking, and will only increase the economic inequality that will slow the economic growth of EVERYONE, including the rich.

        Apparently you have not read Joseph Stiglitz on inequality; are you afraid to because you might learn something that would threaten your vaunted ideology? You are smart enough to understand it, but the cognitive dissonance will be painful for you.

    • modavations

      Shag these complaints extend from time immemorial.My opinion is that we live in the freest country in the cosmos in a Golden Age.Start your own business.Prosper and put others to work

      • Shag_Wevera

        I don’t have an entrepreneurial bone in my body.  God bless those who do because they fill an important role.  I’d like to have a decent quality of life and raise a family nonetheless.

    • William

       Why would we want to be Taiwan, HK or some other country? Should we not want to be the USA?

      • Shag_Wevera

        I’m talking about setting goals and picking a direction.  I do not subscribe to manifest American Exceptionalism.

        • William

           If we want to copy another country I would think Singapore is a better choice than Taiwan, HK or any European country.

  • Gregg Smith

    Not a single American knows what there tax liability will be in 4 months. Does that help the economy? Every year Obama has been in office he’s had a trillion dollar deficit and no budget. Does that help the economy? The price tag for Obamacare has tripled. Does that help the economy? Obama has imposed $46 billion a year in new regulation on business. Does that help the economy?

    • NewtonWhale

      Let me correct your BS tsunami in order:

      1) Neither party wants to raise taxes on 98% of Americans. The 2% who might pay 3.6% more do not constitute every “single American”.
      2) The deficits were baked in the cake by Bush’s unpaid for wars, unpaid for tax cuts, unpaid for Medicare Part D, and the Bush economic crash (see chart).

      3) The price tag for Obamacare has gone down, not up:

      CBO lowers health reform cost estimate

      http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-250_162-57397032/cbo-lowers-health-reform-cost-estimate/ 

      4) Your numbers are wrong. Obama has imposed fewer regulations than either president Bush, and added far less cost than Ronald Reagan:

      Obama’s White House approved 613 federal rules during the first 33 months of his term, 4.7 percent fewer than the 643 cleared by President George W. Bush ’s administration in the same time frame, according to an Office of Management and Budget statistical database reviewed by Bloomberg. 

      The increase is estimated to total as little as $100 million or as much as $4.1 billion, or at most three one-hundredths of a percent of the total economy. 

      The record came in 1992 under George H.W. Bush  when that total hit $20.9 billion in current dollars. In the last year of Ronald Reagan ’s term it was $16 billion in today’s dollars. 

      http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-10-25/obama-wrote-5-fewer-rules-than-bush-while-costing-business.html 

      • Gregg Smith

        1) ALL the Bush tax cuts will expire Jan. 1. Every single citizen got a tax cut under Bush. Not a single person knows what their tax liability will be on Jan 1. 

        2) That’s just silly. Bush did not force Obama to spend $5 trillion.

        3) Down from what? Originally it was $940B and deficit neutral. Now it’s $2.6 T.

        4) http://nation.foxnews.com/president-obama/2012/03/12/obama-s-regs-cost-46-billion-year

        • Prairie_W

           You might just want to check just how much of that reflects service on the debt Bush left us with.

        • Mouse_2012

          Fox nation? bahahahaahhaahah

          • Gregg Smith

            Would you like a link from Heritage or Rush?

  • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

    Stability – Oil futures trading is one of the greatest problems that we face now. Talk about uncertainty. Rising oil prices are a huge brake on our economy. This has nothing to do with forecasts and capital investments. This has to do with profiteering in the form of speculation/gambling on Wall Street by people investment banks and firms. Speculation drives gas prices up, taking money directly out of the pockets of consumers, thus directly reducing the amount of money they have to spend in other sectors, thus directly slowing the economy. Wild swings in consumer spending make it hard for companies to forecast their businesses needs. Shut these gambling houses down! But wait, the decriers of uncertainty, the Republicans, will most certainly block any effort to reign in this huge driver of uncertainty.

    Tax cuts for the Wealthy – 2/3 of Republican voters want them to end. Replace tax cuts for the wealthy with infrastructure spending. Rusting bridges and crumbling roads are not helping us any: they don’t increase our efficiency or our competitiveness. Wait, at the height of the recession Republicans insisted that we replace a good percentage of the original proposed infrastructure spending with tax cuts for the wealthy and businesses (i.e. tax cuts for themselves and their friends). Well what you going to do… can’t live with them, can’t reason with them.

    Economic Terrorism… then there’s the ‘uncertainty’ complained about by Republicans at every opportunity. This was heightened when the Tea Party decided to become economic terrorists by holding the debt ceiling hostage. Their damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead demonstrated that their loyalty was not to America or it’s citizens, but to their ideologically rigid party. The debt ceiling cost us cost the US people about $1.3 billion. Then there is the hidden cost of the resulting increase/prolonging of unemployed.  We should take that out of the salaries of the Tea Party Congress and other Republicans who went along with that nonsense that only hurt our economy and the People.

    Mitch McConnell and John Boehner have to start acting like leaders of their ignorant, unreasoning rabble and not misanthropes as they have been for years now. They need to grow a backbone and start behaving reasonably and patriotically working with the President to restore economic vitality to America instead of trying to sabotage Obama’s chances this fall. They nee  to  and stop attacking the US government, the unemployed, the poor, women, Gays, illegal aliens. Our economic problems have nothing to do with any of those.  They have to do with issues above and outsourcing and the tax loop holes that make it attractive. I’m not saying that we can stop outsourcing, but there ate things other than tax cuts for the wealthy that will make job domestic employees more attractive to corporations that used to be loyal to America, but now only hold allegiance to their financial engineers who figure out how to squeeze more and more profit out of the workers to the benefit of the executives who store their money on the Cayman Islands and in Swiss banks.

    • William

      Which government agencies and programs are you suggesting be downsized for eliminated? The DoD is scheduled to take some hits, but what other agencies should take a hit?

      • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

        I didn’t address elimination of agencies and programs.

        Here’s one little tidbit. Let’s talk DoD. The armed services used to provide their own logistics. Then came Cheney and Dubya who drove outsourcing to private contractors to staggering heights at many hundreds of percent increase in operational costs for in-theater operations. Essentially we had private contractors being paid many times what soldiers were being paid, to take less risk than soldiers (yes they did assume some risk and some died and were injured) and importantly they were under no obligation to follow orders.

        So how did that help anyone – soldiers new this so it undermined comradery, increased cost, drove up national debt and huge, profitable, some-times no competition contracts, were awarded to FODD (Friends of Dick and Dubya) so… there’s just one example of huge waste and corruption.

        So where were was all the outrage one should expect from all those folks with support our troops ribbon magnets?

        • William

           It is much cheaper to hire outside contractors for logistics. There are no recruitment, training, dependents, and legacy costs like retirement, medical. It is not only DoD that outsources logistics, many large private companies do the same thing to eliminate legacy costs.

          DoD spends about 50 billion a year on TRICARE (medical insurance for military active/retired people) and using contractors  that keeps that cost under control.

  • Prairie_W

    Apropos of everything and nothing in particular — unless someone repeats that question, “Are you better off… etc.” — Economist Dean Baker has these wise thoughts to ponder.  Consider this our koan-for-the-day!

    … Someone developed a simple way to identify incompetent news
    reporters.  If you hear a reporter ask people in President Obama’s
    administration, ideally in a belligerent tone, “are the American people
    better off than they were four years ago?,” the reporter is trying to
    tell you that they are not qualified to do their job.

    The reason we know that the questioners are incompetent reporters is
    that this is a pointless question. Suppose your house is on fire and the
    firefighters race to the scene. They set up their hoses and start
    spraying water on the blaze as quickly as possible. After the fire is
    put out, the courageous news reporter on the scene asks the chief
    firefighter, “is the house in better shape than when you got here?”.

    http://www.cepr.net/index.php/blogs/beat-the-press/qare-americans-better-off-today-than-they-were-four-years-agoq-the-questron-that-exposes-incompetent-reporters

    • Gregg Smith

      I can see why you don’t like the question. 

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         Don’t worry.  If a Republican incumbent is running then in Prairie’s view the journalist is incompetent for NOT asking the question.

        • Prairie_W

          That’s true.  Of course, Republicans usually need to be checked twice or more, their pockets inspected for dirty money, and their mouths washed out with soap.  Just a precaution.  Please step over here.

  • Joseph_Wisconsin

    Two different objectives for the current Republicans and Democrats.  The Republicans want even more prosperity for the already fabulously prosperous and want to convince everyone else, or they  truly believe, that his will some how do everyone much good.  Not a good track record for that contention though.

    The Democrats want to try and make life better for the other 90%, especially the lower 50%, by taking some from the top few.  The track record for that is a little better, especially for programs that did a remarkable job of doing away with old age poverty (Medicare and Medicaid), and raising the standard of living of those at the very bottom.  Like Shag_Wevera said below though the bottom 80% of America, especially those with out college education or in high skill professions, can only expect steep decline that would be ameliorated  by social safety net systems such as in Northern Europe (Democrats) or treated like the poor in third world countries (Republicans).  http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/revolt-of-the-rich/

    To win with their platform the Republicans are going to have to continue to run an all white strategy,  as South Carolina Lindsey Graham put it:

    “We’re not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long-term.”

    Angry white guys like Hank Williams Jr.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/03/hank-williams-jr-obama-gays_n_1852739.html?utm_hp_ref=entertainment

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    They just announced that Obama’s speech is moving indoors.

    Tough time filling the stadium or is it just the weather?

    Are they going to move the Greek columns inside?

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

       Who cares?

      Obama is the tool of the criminal elite and Romney is the criminal elite.

      Your choice 2012.

    • Mouse_2012

      Are they?

      What important questions you bring up.

    • Thinkin5

      At least there are people who want to be there. Romney’s crowd held their nose and dragged themselves there.

      • Don_B1

        I liked Tom Friedman’s observation that Romney was renting the Republican Party and it was renting Romney.

    • rvl1

       For security?   Maybe they got wind that some right wing nutcase with gun might show up.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      Please keep bringing up the happy horsecrap that the right lost with in ’08.

      And remind us how you’re an “undecided moderate”.

  • travelheaven

    We are MUCH better off than we were four years ago, and last night’s convention made it all clear why. Yes, the economy is slow — but we’ve made huge strides on social issues. To hear women’s rights openly discussed, along with equality, opportunity, LGBT rights, health care and other issues that really do affect the nation’s daily quality of life was affirming. To see a diverse inclusive crowd was eye-opening. Yes, I might’ve just drunk the Koolaid again, but I’m willing to bet it tastes a whole lot better than the bitter brew the Romney crew is offering.

  • lgubb

    Think about unemployment.  Who is firing and laying off people while they are at the same time complaining about the unemployment rate, the number of people on food stamps, the number of people that pay taxes and the government spending money to create jobs?   Where have all the people that say they don’t need the government for a better economy been? How can one be firing and laying off people and complaining about the unemployment rate? How do people complain about a slow recovery, yet not talk what we’re trying to recover from, when it occurred and what political party was in the White House at the time? When did the party who had the White House then suddenly become economic geniuses to know where a recovery from that should be now?

    • hennorama

      Yes, and where are all the mythical “job creators” (Republispeak for “rich people”) who created all those jobs when GeeDub slashed their taxes?  Did they suddenly leave the country, or put all their job-creating riches offshore?

      Perhaps these patriots are holding out for even lower taxes than they enjoy now.  Yes, let’s cater to their wishes, after they’ve held the country for ransom.

      There is no shortage of opportunity or capital for those who want to start or expand a business.  The problem is the lack of demand, not high taxes.

      And the reality, as anyone who’s ever run a business knows, is that the LAST thing a business wants is more employees.  Hiring only happens when an employer determines that there is a higher demand for their products or services, or there is some increased administrative need.  Taxes are a factor, but only a minor one.

      No one wakes up one morning and says “YES!  My taxes are lower, so I’ll hire those employees who I couldn’t profit from and didn’t need yesterday!”

      That’s the reality.  Without increased demand, US unemployment will continue to improve only slowly, regardless of who is in the White House.

    • Don_B1

      The “job-creators” LIKE high unemployment levels because then they can hire at low wages and increase their profits.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    What!?  Simpson Bowles was done. Obama rejected it. What la la land is this?

    • Thinkin5

       Simpson Bowles was rejected by Paul Ryan too. La la land??!!

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Yeah, because it was a drop in the bucket for the true financial crisis we face.

        We should have done it anyway, as a start, and then kept going in aggressive intervals.

    • J__o__h__n

      Obama created it over Republican opposition despite their claims of wanting a commission for years.  Then Ryan and the Republicans voted against it.  It wasn’t just Obama who rejected it. 

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Why didn’t he get out and “call them out” on that, and campaign for its passage?

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      Done, indeed. Call me when they approve a report.

      (Hint: I’m unplugging my phone.)

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    “Romney fine with unequal America”.

    Are you serious Tom? Do you think anywhere near a majority of Americans want equal-ends, entitlement-based Socialist “equality”?

    The vast believe in equal opportunity, as best as possible, and then the individual takes over, making choices, and having consequences, good or ill, smooth or bumpy.

    If the Dems are going to argue the former, then the Dems will become an extinct party, something I thought would happen to the Neocon Repubs first.

    • lgubb

      Socialist?    Do you have some solid evidence for your allegations?  Could you provide it for us please?  What’s your take on Theodore Roosevelt and his view of taxes?

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Taxes fund limited government for Defense, Law (including Financial) Enforcement, and a Basic Safety Net for truly needy temporary help.

        That is vastly different than using government to try and provide every positive aspect of life we can define, which is financially impossible.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Notice they can’t answer the question as to why Obama is leaderless and was and is AWOL. They change the subject so some petty Romney nit.

    • lgubb

      Your choice for leadership is what, to lead where?  What evidence do Americans have that Mr. Romney is going to lead the nation in a better way?  The last time a Republican was in the White House where was the nation and its economy led?

      • DrewInGeorgia

        “The last time a Republican was in the White House where was the nation and its economy led?”

        Back To The Future!!!

        ;’)

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Government-backed Student Loans and the resultant College Bubble is the cause of out of reach tuition.

    Housing bubble Redux.

    It doesn’t take much thinking to understand, and the Elite University folks are playing the Government/Willing Banker game just like the Wall St/Real Estate people did.

    Organic economy of supply and demand would work. This free money crap from the Central Bank and Government expansion is a recipe for disaster as always.

    We need to grow up.

    • MrNutso

      The student loan bubble is the result of the Romney business mind think.  The head of the University of Phoenix realized that thanks to student loans they could make gobs of money by expanding beyond their original model of education of working professionals.  This was followed by all for profit educators.  They suck in students saddled with loans with no guarantee of an education let alone a job.  

      The risk is socialized and the profit is privatized.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        It’s a government-backed debt charade. With Bailout promised at the end.  

        Which party supports it more?

    • lgubb

      Your solutions are what? Fire and lay off more people? Ask for-profits to take less profit?

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Let the market work out supply and demand.

        Compost Happens. We have to deal with it. We can’t be stagnant out of fear. Jobs will be lost, jobs will be created.

        Are you not glad if a bunch of unsustainable jobs in Finance or Real Estate have been lost? Now we need new jobs that reflect the demand of what people want. Will wages (bloated printed-money inflated salaries) decrease? perhaps. Will our demands reflect more needs than wants for a while? likely.  The next google, next apple, next whatever will happen if people are free to think, experiment, invest, risk take etc.

        Does anyone really believe in a static State Socialism anymore? With some magic money-tree in Washington to just hand our a lovely existence to everybody?

        • Human898

          Has the market done that?  Why not?  Are you suggesting that if all the sudden government student loans dried up and students had to borrow from their parents, there would be no bankrupt for-profits, no people fired or laid off?   Please give us real, not imagined examples of the state socialism you keep mentioning.  Who’s going to implement all the controls you’re thinking are just going to fall in line in an unrestricted free market?  Why aren’t people just playing fairly, honestly and justly now?  Is the government getting in their way?

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Save the Student Loan Officers at the expense of the nation. Compost Happens.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    The 8.3% unemployment number is a faux number.  U6 is at 15%.  Good jobs have been destroyed and replaced with low paying jobs in the Obama economy.
     

    • MrNutso

      What exactly is the Obama economy?

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         We are living it.

        If it was the Clinton economy, the Bush economy, then it is the Obama economy.

        The truth is when times are good the government will have a hard time hurting the economy but if times are tough, like now, government policies can make a difference, on the margin.

        • MrNutso

          So it’s really just the economy.

        • Human898

          So what did the “government” do to the economy between the inauguration dates in January 2001 and January 2009?
          Net gain, net loss, relative the “government” economy prior to that?

        • Human898

          So what did the “government” do to the economy between the inauguration dates in January 2001 and January 2009?
          Net gain, net loss, relative the “government” economy prior to that?

    • Thinkin5

       And in the W. economy. This down economy, especially for the middle class started a decade ago. Bain helped destroy jobs as did many other corporations. Profits come at a cost.

    • lgubb

      How are jobs lost?   Did Mr. Obama lay off and fire people?  Is the government supposed to produce high paying jobs?  Wouldn’t that cost taxpayer money?

    • Prairie_W

      About that “Obama economy” — here’s Bush four years ago, almost to the day, as we were about to go into the election that would elect Obama and as the economy and the financial system were crashing in Sept. 2008:

      … We’ve seen triple-digit swings in the stock market. Major financial institutions have teetered on the edge of collapse, and some have failed. As uncertainty has grown, many banks have restricted lending, credit markets have frozen, and families and businesses have found it harder to borrow money.

      We’re in the midst of a serious financial crisis…

      … Financial assets related to home mortgages have lost value during the house decline, and the banks holding these assets have restricted credit. As a result, our entire economy is in danger.

      So I propose that the federal government reduce the risk posed by these troubled assets and supply urgently needed money so banks and other financial
      institutions can avoid collapse and resume lending. …NYT transcript

      ___

      Economist Paul Krugman, a few months ago, did an analysis of the Obama and Bush presidencies with respect to job loss.

      “Krugman, brandishing a chart, invites readers to compare the numbers. From January 2001 through March 2004, he says, the country lost more than 1.6 million jobs overall, and more than 2.4 million jobs in the private sector. (Krugman doesn’t label his axes, but a call to the BLS confirmed that his chart is meant to be read in the thousands, and we
      checked his figures against the BLS website.)

      “Meanwhile, from January 2009 through March 2012, the country lost an estimated 740,000 jobs in total, and lost about 161,000 jobs in the private sector. In other words, job loss under Obama — who inherited a
      recession deeper than any seen in generations, followed by a recovery that most would describe as modest — was nevertheless dwarfed by job loss under Bush, at least for the majority of the two presidents’ first terms.” …HuffPo

  • Potter

    The white man who called who wanted to see himself in the crowd there should try doing that by getting beyond the color of his and their skins! For goodness sake, when are we going to grow up!

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    The vitriol toward entrepreneurial business people and the naive rejection of the reality of where jobs come from is disturbing. 

    No wonder Dems increasingly fall for the Corporatist model. Hate small business, all that’s left is Big. And then you get collusion between Big Biz and Big Gov to try and technocratically manipulate some engineered economy, which always gets corrupted and always fails!

    • nj_v2

      “technocratically manipulate some engineered economy”

      Leather Dave buries his cultish Libertarianism ever more deeply in increasingly obtuse language. 

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        You don’t understand that phrase?  That explains alot about your blind spots.

    • lgubb

      How do you figure your allegations and deny your own vitriol?  Would you deny that there are many entrepeneurs and supporters of enterprise who do not support the policies of Romney and Ryan?

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        I don’t give FF about supporters of Romney or Obama. They are both tools of the same State Capitalistic charade, tilting naively and counterproductively toward socialist cronyism or business cronyism, but the overall corruption of our governance and economy the same.

  • lifobryan

    Dear Tom Ashbrook,
    Thank you for giving such a strong, articulate voice to Republican positions. They’re not noisy enough on their own, and need all the help you can give them. And please send my thanks to Bob Oaks for the happy cadence in his voice whenever he sings the name “Mitt Romney.” 

    The Republicans are lucky to have you guys, because FOX isn’t doing nearly as good a job defining, defending & cheerleading trickle-down economics. 

    • jo_depaolo

      thats it, slam tom for being a neutral facilitator of discussion. if you dont like it, simply turn off your radio.

      • DrewInGeorgia

        Neutral facilitator? hahahahhahahahahah

        It seemed last week that Tom was attempting to return to that role. Obviously a new day has dawned. You don’t like lifobryan’s comment? Simply stop reading it.

        • jo_depaolo

          my friend, i am appreciative of discourse. i do not think tom should be trashed for appreciating the same thing.

    • lgubb

      I like it that Mr. Ashbrook plays the devil’s advocate and asks tough questions.  The guests are holding their own VERY well.

      • lifobryan

        But lately, Tom (& NPR in general) seem to advocate more strongly for the Republican devil than the Democrat devil. 

        • Human898

          There is nothing wrong with people feeling how they feel about Mr. Ashbrook’s positions, but not all may see it as you do.  I prefer that Mr. Ashbrook ask tough questions of all his guests, not just advocate for any “side”.  You might note that he is asking people to answer questions they don’t seem to be asking of themselves, something we might all be doing more of.   At times I could agree with you regarding Mr. Ashrook’s asking tougher questions of one group than another, but in general, I really enjoy his show because he asks very pertinent questions, many of whcih put people on the spot and draw defense of their positions from him, the articulate ones do just fine against the questioning, others don’t answer to their own positions very well.  Mr. Ashbrook mostly let’s his guests speak for themselves after provoking some key questions not often asked of them.

          • lifobryan

            I like his show a lot too – and listen to it every day. I suppose I’m speaking about a larger trend I hear across NPR lately. 

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      In America, you are free to live in a commune. You may have trouble with the property taxes, but at least you can give it a whirl.

      • lifobryan

        Fnord

  • TomK_in_Boston

    The Dems have a typical centrist approach; some infrastructure spending, a tiny tax hike at the top, and a baby step toward dealing with out health care costs. The TeaOP offer nothing but more of the tax cuts and deregulation that caused the Bush crash. I’d dearly love a new FDR instead of Rockefeller republican Obama, but the RR boys are unacceptable.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       CBO cost of Obamacare (2014-2023) is $2.6T.  You call that a baby step– and it is certainly an underestimate.

      • ulTRAX2

        Interest on the national debt paid during the Bush years: 2.9 trillion.

        Pray tell… which is the greater waste of money?

        • DrewInGeorgia

          Especially given the decline in the value of The Almighty Dollar.

          • Gregg Smith

            That’s troublesome. At least it’s not the Euro.

        • Gregg Smith

          What’s the interest on the national debt today smarty pants? Add it to Obamacare.

          • ulTRAX2

            Yup, it’s expensive when only the government has the money to prop up the nation when nutty policies YOU support destroy the economy and get us into a needless war fought on the nation’s credit card.

          • Gregg Smith

            I have no idea why you want to look backward and ignore the service on the debt now. Today.

          • ulTRAX2

            And somewhere in your amusing “analysis” you continue to  neglect the irresponsible tax GOP cuts YOU continue to support.
            Bush had a chance to pay down debt in 2001 AND REFUSED. YOU have repeatedly supported this policy even if we have lost trillions in revenue.
            If Bush and the GOP hadn’t so sabotaged the fiscal health of the nation with about $5 trillion in new debt… we’d be in a better position to deal with the economic disaster YOUR policies created.

          • Gregg Smith

            I’ll take that as an “I don’t know”.

      • lgubb

        CBO projected revenues in 2001 – CBO projected revenues in 2009?   CBO projected revenues now?

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       The primary deregulation that caused the 2008 financial crash was the repeal of Glass-Steagall in 1999.

      Who signed that repeal?

      Oh, tonight’s speaker — Bill Clinton.

      I wonder if he’ll mention his regret for signing that repeal.

      • Thinkin5

         And Myth Romney wants to keep it repealed. Clinton made a mistake on that one. Fell for the ‘we can regulate ourselves’ line. Not again. Greed drives them not ethics.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        This is the achilles heal of these DNC supporters, or even closest socialists. 

        The Socialism fails.

        The partnering of Big Government/Big Finance Fails.

        Free Market, Rule of Law.  My god its so depressing that that is considered radical today.

        • Human898

          What is the balance of socialism to capitalism in the nations that are the most stable in this world of global recession?

          Socialism is NOT defined solely by communism, one extreme example of it., It runs in level and degree from the line that separates it from “capitalist” to radical extremes, the same as capitalism runs from moderate to radical extremes.

          People who live in a society, belong to a society (organization) and are “social ceatures”, are to a degree socialist, as compared to being anti-social.   Socialism covers many meanings and inclusionsas does capitalism and in many cases, they are not mutually exclusive of one another.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Using debt and mandates to try and achieve well-intentioned utopian goals is not sustainable. History has shown it.

            It fails, they dig in deeper, it fails worse, the people finally see the folly, then are forced to revolt.

            Freedom and Self-Governance gives us a chance to escape that. But only if we are informed and vigilant as citizens. About how the Constitution and Self Government and Rule of Law works, and about the fundamental drivers of Current Events.

      • TomK_in_Boston

        You’re obsessed with Clinton. I don’t care where the dereg came from, it’s a cornerstone of voodoo econ, and RR want more of it – a disaster.

        FYI, yes, Clinton drank the dereg Kool Aid. He and the radical Gingrich-Gramm congress, and administrative actions by the Bush SEC, are the culprits in the latest round of dereg. However, it was going on since Reagan.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           I’ll take the RR 12M new jobs.

      • lgubb

        Who keeps saying there should be even less regulation?   Are you saying there should be more?

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           Good regulation.
          Glass-Steagall was good.  It was simple — 30 pages.  It lasted from 1936 until 1999.

          Romney made an excellent point a few weeks ago.  He says we should measure all regulations through a cost benefit lens.  Measure the benefits AND the cost.

          We will get better regulations with this kind of analysis and hopefully EVERYONE in government, whoever wins, will use that metric when crafting regulation.  Obamacare didn’t do that.  Dodd-Frank didn’t do that.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Imagine Romney raised the possibility of reinstating Glass Steagall? That would be awesome. I think he’s too much an establishment stooge to do that, but a real Rule of Law Republican/libertarian could clean up on that issue.

          • Mike_Card

            That was a few weeks ago; he’ll change his mind again, soon.

          • Human898

            And you are the purveyor of “good regulation”?  Aren’t we all?   You propose what vacuum within which such “good regulation” will be put into place?  No opposing views on what is “good” are there?

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          ever hear of walking and chewing gum? You are too deep in leftist hyperbole to understand what Free Markets and Rule of Law mean, and why it functions over the long term, given a vigilant citizenry (which we have NOT been).

      • ulTRAX2

        He should. Clinton was a corporate Dem who bought into some irresponsible Right wing ideas. The BIGGER questions here are as a right winger do YOU now reject these ideas? Or are you just trying to absolve the Right by blaming Clinton for being foolish?

        • William

           But Clinton had a good economy, low taxes, low unemployment, reduced welfare roles, budget surplus, what is wrong with that? Other than he used Reagan style economics to achieve success which the Left hated.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      You still know nothing of what really caused the crash. The Wall Streeters and Real Estaters were only to0 happy to oblige the system and lack of Rule of Law laid out for them by the Clinton, Bush, Obama financial technocrats and Central Bankers.

      Glass Steigal type regulations are completely compatible with limited government, Rule of Law society.

    • William

       Do you really think the Democrats will stop at a 2-3 percent tax hike? If it went through, next year there would be calls for “a little more”….I would love to see Obama become more of a Blue Dog Democrat instead of this McGovern Democrat.

      • TomK_in_Boston

        I wish you were right. We need a lot more. The most we can hope for is a return to the Bush top rates. I don’t think the top rate should be under 50%, I’d like to see the estate tax back, divs and cap gains as ordinary income, and a financial transactions tax. 

        I’d LOVE to see an end of the scam where financial con men like romney deduct the payments on the debt they load their victim companies up with. That wd put a damper on the “private equity” – I mean LBO – con game.

        • William

           FDR pushed tax rates up over 90 percent so easily if Obama got another term he would push them up to 60 percent or higher. Who is going to stop him?

          I would love to companies like Apple and Google lose their little tax avoidance tricks and pay much more.

          Tax cap/div gains at 2 percent or less to keep people investing for old age.

  • jo_depaolo

    fyi for your guest, whites make up 72% of the US according to the 2010 census. 

    dems would be best served talking about education investment, including technical training for the unemployed, as a path to prosperity. the US requires such to remain competitive…

    • lgubb

      Apparently you missed what has been talked about with regard to education.  If one backs technical training, who is going to pay for it and for those that say there should be less government, why are they waiting for the government or blaming it for not doing what they say it should not do?

      • jo_depaolo

        as the government is insuring my low-interest loans with which i currently use to attend school, so too should the government provide low-interest loans for unemployed to seek training and further education. i do not believe the government should pay for everyone’s education. alternatively, i am not in favor of the ridiculous idea of abolishing low/no-interest loans provided by the government for people to invest in themselves and better their lives. this would be stupid and destructive. the greatest investment a government can make, in my opinion, is an investment in people.

    • Mike_Card

      Go to the Census web site for the Census bureau’s definition of “white.”  It includes people whose origins are all of Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East.  That is different from ethnicities.

      • jo_depaolo

        true, 72% is somewhat inflated. yet the guest dismissed offhand the fact that this country remains majority white. this is not meant to be a pro-white posting, merely an observation of fact. democrats need white votes as republicans need minority votes – also facts. i thought the caller brought up an interesting point that was, unfortunately, not addressed in the guest’s response. 

        • Mike_Card

          No argument from me.  I think it’s unfortunate that people in these discussions simply refuse to respond, rather than admit, “I didn’t know that.”

          Recently, I’ve either heard or read that non “ethnic” voters comprise 37% of the electorate; that would imply the mayority is only 63%, rather than 72%.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

    Half of all the jobs created since this Depression began have been low wage jobs with no benefits.

    Wages are going down, by a lot.

    1/3 of all jobs in America now are freelance.

    The American worker is being pushed down to the level of China and the third world. It’s just a matter of time until the jobs that haven’t been outsourced (computer jobs are leaving this country by the thousands now to India) are at the pay level of China and India.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    The horse and cart IS a good model, and the question this election is who Americans want leading, Private Initiative or Government Management.

    Any honest analysis of the financial crisis, and the Crony Capitalism, the revolving door nonsense, the regulatory capture, all on display in the Obama administration, as it was during Bush, Clinton…… shows how well-intentioned, technocratic management of our economy or society by elites who are “smart enough” to develop a maser plan for our own good, is a UTOPIAN DREAM, that is repeatedly corrupted and used against us.

    Limited government, Rule of Law, Individual initiative and responsibility. That is what we have always strived for, and we shouldn’t quit now, with the elites so close to having fully hijacked the power of Government to achieve their quasi-fascistic ends of removing liberty, self-government and distributed power from the People.

    • lgubb

      Then why are you apparently blaming the government for lack of a better economy? Is the government firing and laying off the bulk of the employed, increasing the unemployment rate? Why were and have people been laid off and fired? Is someone profiting from that? Did the net result of the “leadership” between January 2001 and January 2009 not exist? Aren’t government and non-government interactive and haven’t they, like society been most prosperous when working in cooperation and support of one another? Didn’t our founders want checks and balances within government as well as between the governed and the governors?

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        I’m blaming government/financial class collusion, and a mix of well-meaning govt policy gone bad (housing etc) as well as the blatant corruption that will occur when we populate every administration with financial vampires and hold them above the law, let alone listen to their crap, instead of letting the People drive the economy organically through their demand for real things.

        Technocratic management is failing and is too corrupt. Its the new tyranny.  When you want to stop tyranny, what principles do you need to return to?

        http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          The current financial tyranny is ONLY POSSIBLE with the power of government, exercised wrongly, or corruptly un-used.

          We have given way too much power to unelected, appointed technocratic elites, and we are paying the price. Paulson, Summers, Geithner, Bernanke etc etc.

          Only a re-establishment of Self-governance and grass roots energy to self govern more, and trust elites less, will ever help to devolve the power and return it to the people.

          The Constitution is there for us for that purpose. Its sad that so many misunderstand, and even despise the notions so much today.

          That is the real victory by the State Capitalists/fascists. We are self-defeated and now pine for some Utopian Socialist solution or Benevolent Dictator President, and have no dignity and confidence to self govern.

        • Human898

          If one reads law regarding housing, one will note the “safe and sound” clauses.  The government did not force any business to take unsafe and unsound risks.  Corruption is found everywhere, would you deny that?  What’s your plan, since you seem to know what you don’t like.  Please tell us also how your plan will avoid all the other problems of plans in place and offer us some evidence that it works on a large scale.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Where are the prosecutions under Obama?

            Have you looked at this site and the links?

            http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com

            Check out the “Start Here” links on the right of the page.

    • nj_v2

      Leather Dave just keeps rearranging the same words in slightly different combinations…liberty, rule of law, crony capitalism, technocratic management, limited government…

      I wonder if there’s a digital equivalent of those old, picture flip books. People could just mix and match their own combinations.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        The fact those words are meaningless to you with respect to our contemporary situation is a great example of why we are where we are.

      • J__o__h__n

        Of course there is a digital equivalent – how do you think they are written now?

  • BloodSweat

    What is the govt’s role?  One of the areas of unemployment few reports dig in to is the lack of skills in-demand skills of many of the unemployed.  Is the private sector going to bring back low skill jobs- No.  Is the private sector going to retrain those people- Not without government incentives.

    The last GOP administration and GOP controlled Congress proved that the GOP likes its own form of Big Government and Big spending.  The question is – whose government serves America best?

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

    American Enterprise Institute

    Board of Trustees: Chairman Bruce Kovner (Caxton
    Associations, LLC); Vice Chair Lee R. Raymond (Exxon Mobil Corporation);
    Treasurer Tully M. Friedman (Friedman, Fleischer, & Lowe LLC);
    Gordon M. Binder (Coastview Capital, LLC); Harlan Crow (Crow Holdings);
    Christopher DeMuth (American Enterprise Institute); Morton H. Fleischer
    (Spirit Finance Corp.); Christopher B. Galvin (Motorola); Raymond V.
    Gilmartin (Merck & Co.); Harvey Golub (American Express Co.); Robert
    F. Greenhill (Greenhill & Co., LLC) ; Roger Hertog (Alliance
    Capital Management Corporation); Martin M. Koffel (URS Corporation);
    John A. Luke, Jr. (MeadWestvaco Corp.); L. Ben Lytle (Anthem, Inc.);
    Alex Mandl (Gemplus International); Robert A. Pritzker (Colson
    Associates, Inc.); J. Joe Ricketts (Ameritrade Holding Corporation);
    Kevin B. Rollins (Dell, Inc.); John W. Rowe (Exelon Corp.); Edward B.
    Rust, Jr. (State Farm Insurance Co.); William S. Stavropoulos (Dow
    Chemical Co.); Wilson H. Taylor (CIGNA Corp.); Marilyn Ware (American
    Water); James Q. Wilson (Pepperdine University)

    Your typical corporate fascist think tank.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      OOOOOO, Business people! Shriek!!!!!!

      Are we supposed to be looking for a group supported by a list of Entitlement Recipients or money printing Treasury Secretaries?

      Anything but people with intelligence, drive and results.

      Good lord if this is the divide being drawn in this country, we are screwed.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

         Business people????

        These are corporate fascists. Big difference.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          They may be, but you need to explain, and push for them to be held to the same Rule of Law as the rest of us if that is true.

          You don’t throw out Business, because we as a self-governing people have come up short on our holding people in Business accountable to the Rule of Law.

      • J__o__h__n

        These are the people rigging the system you rail against. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/redshawaiian Patricia Mounce

    Obama rejected Simpson Bowles because Ryan and the Republicans would not raise taxes, Ryan voted against it because it did not reject Obamacare

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      You are only telling part of the Ryan story.  He wanted it to reform ALL of health care.  The governments largest debt driver is healthcare (including Medicare) to the tune of $120T of unfunded entitlements and he felt it important to reform ALL of it.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

         Ryan’s health care plan for America is expand the blood sucking health insurance companies to American seniors.

        Great plan. For the bloodsuckers.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           Ryan makes it an option.

          Are you against choice?  What happened to pro-choice?

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

            No, I’m not for choice for bloodsuckers to subsidized with public money.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

            How many times are you going to beat that particular dead horse and expect it to cross the finish line?

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    First Obama makes fun of Romney’s 59 point plan and then he complains that he doesn’t release his plan.  He can’t have it both ways.

    Notice how he laughs at his own joke.  Unfortunately for him, Obama is the joke.

  • Boston_mom

    We should already know what unbridled free market enterprise looks like, unfettered and unregulated. Didn’t everyone read Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle in high school? Doesn’t everybody remember the robber baron oligarchs and the poverty-stricken masses from history class? So we really want less government regulation? Fewer environmental regulations? Dirty water? Ground up fingers in our burger meat? The mantra “less government” sounds fun, but all we need to do is look to the past and at history to see where it lands us. Wall Street = robber barons of this century. Shameful. 

    • Gregg Smith

      Does anyone advocate a completely unbridled, unfettered and unregulated market? We need less government and where we need government we need smarter, more efficient and restricted government.

      • Boston_mom

        No, nobody wants it to be completely unfettered because that would mean giving me the power to make my own decisions about family planning or whom I’d like to marry, and mean keeping Republican-mandated probes out of a woman’s vagina before seeking an abortion. This form of government control and intervention is supported by the Republican platform. It’s just after the “unborn” become “born” that we want to let everyone live the isolationist, anti-establishment, anti-government, deregulated life, right? Less government until it becomes inconvenient. Gregg, you appear to have lots of time on your hands. I have deadlines, so I’m sure you’ll have the last word here. 

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          You are a libertarian and don’t even know it.

      • Human898

        The problem I see is that some are suggesting that others do NOT want that also.  Thus it would appear much of the division amongst us may not be so much diametric differences of desires and directions, but similar ones that are not articulated well enough to be recognized as such.   Who really does NOT want more efficiency and less cost, not just in government, but in their everyday living expenses?   The problem with sudden austerity, including the cutting out of spending on credit, is that those who profit from people spending on credit, have their bottom line reduced, they have to lay off people.   Cutting government, lays off people.  People cutting back on household expenses and spending, including the credit cards hawked by those who profit from extended credit.  Cutting out waste and inefficiency, real or perceived, also cuts the roles of the employed which adds to an inverse problem.   Lots of unemployed, those that need assistance and those that do not pay taxes. I think we need to come up with solutions together based on what we really want to acheive, which I believe is sustainable prosperity. A discussion on how to acheive that can’t begin until we recognize that is a common goal and being at odds solves nothing and makes things worse.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      So confused. Emotionally satisfying, but factually confused. Read Reckless Endangerment or Bailout and come back and tell us about the “Free Market”.

      You can have free markets and prosecution of crimes and corruption (Rule of Law). It just takes work.

      This non-partisan site is all about it:

      http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com

      • J__o__h__n

        Once again, someone who draws a different conclusion must be “factually confused” and hasn’t read the cult handbook. 

  • ulTRAX2

     
    Has the nation gone insane? We see no second thoughts, contrition, or remorse from the crazies on the Right. They can’t believe their perfect ideology of irresponsible tax cuts and reckless deregulation destroyed the economy and bankrupted the nation. They are just obsessed with getting back in power to do it all again, only this time on steroids. From the Democrats we’ve seen moral and intellectual cowardice in refusing to fully expose or reverse the insanity of the Right and we’re left with half-reforms.

    We should all fear for the nation.

    • MrNutso

      Because they don’t care.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      There is nothing insane about limited government, and Rule of Law that also includes financial chicanery that distorts the free market.

      The insanity is not recognizing the both parties participate in suppressing the latter, and expecting different results.

      Your aggressive “right” bashing, which seems to include limited government/rule of law types, is hyperbolic and unfounded.

      • ulTRAX2

        Pray tell… where is the intrinsic value in the “rule of law” when those laws permit irresponsible behavior that bring down the entire economy?

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          We don’t have Rule of Law for the Financial/Governing elite. You can’t discredit something based on it’s absence.

          It is only present when we bring it to life via interested and educated self-governance.

          We have instead chosen to hand our power over to technocratic elites, hope for the best, and enjoy our consumerism.

          • Human898

            So you’re for less rule of law and more rule of law at the same time?  

            How does that work without suggesting the same things you are saying do not work?   I have no problems with anyone’s ideals, but I do have problems when it appears they don’t know how to make them work or when someone contradicts their own ideals or beliefs, not just occasionally, as it is difficult to totally avoid, but contradict themselves in many ways.

            My problem with people that seem to suggest nothing, but their own plan (or the fallicies of everything else), including lack of rules of law or rules of law where they prefer to see it, is that it does not offer anything different or better than what we have with regard to a struggle over the interests of individuals and groups, rather than discussion of a cooperation and compromise of the interests of different groups for a common goal recognized by all.  

            Would this nation exist were its people and founders to NOT put aside their personal and special interest group’s differences or come to some compromise on them and cooperate on a common goal?  Wasn’t that common goal their independence from colonial and monarchial rule and a government that was a balance between pure democracy and representative democracy, one that presented checks and balances to individual and special interest power and influence in all directions?

            Who does not want to see the world heed to their ideaology and beliefs?  At the same time, are people thinking about, recognizing and acknowledging that others want just as much power and influence over the “perfect world” as they do and the impossibilty of all having all their ideologies, beliefs, power and influence implemented at the same time.  A “deal” is what?  Choices are based on what?  Existing in a vacuum or an existence that is ruled by compromise where we must make a choice to take one path or another, not based on getting everything we want every time, but on getting what we believe is the majority or what we desire.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Rule of Law is not the same as Government Central Management of our Economy or Society.

            Classical Rule of Law. Not prescribing Ends, but establishing transparent rules to the game, and then letting people free within it.

      • Human898

        The problem appears to be, if humans acted fairly, justly, honestly to one another and respected one another’s freedoms as much as their own, there would be little or no need for government.  Reality says humans when given free reign act as we have seen evidence of.

        Rules of law represent what?  An individual’s or small group’s dictation of how things should be and no discussion of corruption or unfair advantage be allowed?  Or, does it represent the will of the majority, limited by the general provisions of a Constitution, put in place to check and balance the potential for unjust prejudice and advantage of pure majority rule?  If the majority decided to make laws that would prejudice people based on the color of their skin (something one has no choice over) and the color the majority is prejudiced against is a minority number, there is an example of injustice by the rule of the majority. 

        The founders wanted “the people” to choose their own destiny, but fairly, honestly and with justice and respect for their fellow humans and their fellow human’s right to their freedoms as much as anyone else’s. This included the thought that where one person’s freedoms infringed upon another’s a compromise amongst those in dispute was in order and if no compromise could be reached, a means for a third party to impart a compromise or decision about whose rights and freedoms take precedence and why was in place.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          You explain exactly why we have to have a Constitution, and the role of a government by the people to enforce the Rule of Law, as opposed to Rule of Discretion or Tyranny of the Majority.

          The Founder were TOTALLY aware of Human Nature and Power. That’s the whole point.  Limited government Constitutionalists SUPPORT THAT, regardless if Utopian liberals want to paint them as wild west anarchists.

          This confusion is destroying our country.

          • Human898

            So please tell us how you support the rule of law, don’t like many of the laws and intend to replace them with your own, if only to restrict the rule of law?

    • nj_v2

      The Cons are evil/crazy, the Dems are useless. Yet partisans of each side cling to their delusions that these “leaders” care about them. Sad.

    • William

       You can’t really harp about tax cuts anymore because Obama embraced them, extended them, and brought on his own tax cuts. Carter and Clinton both deregulated industries like the airlines and banking.

      • ulTRAX2

        It doesn’t change the fact that for 8 of the past 10 years we’ve had the BUSH tax cuts… tax cuts we could NOT afford since We The People were already 6 TRILLION in debt.

        Why is it the Right NEVER wonders why Bush and the GOP were in such a hurry to sabotage debt paydown?

        • William

           The five million people took off the federal income tax rolls did not complain. The middle class did not complain about their tax cuts. The upper class did not complain. So that is what the people wanted and they got it. All of the above have been complaining about over spending.

          Obama said he was going to cut the deficit by 50 percent in his first term. He did not even try so short term and long term debt reductions were sabotaged by him.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/YMV2HJ2TBKMCN2QRAVI3I2OOGM Jim Jim

    End the Oil War. Budget Fixed.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Didn’t we have ‘war for oil’?  Where’s the oil?  We are still waiting.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

         America only got two small oil contracts out of Iraq after spending over a trillion dollars on a war there.

        Was that deliberate or shear stupidity?

        I’ll leave it up to you to decide.

        Hint, the war was the end game. It keeps the military contractors getting more contracts.

      • hennorama

        Wars and unrest in the Middle East do little if anything to increase the SUPPLY of oil.  What really is affected is the PRICE of oil.  More warfare/unrest = higher prices = higher profits for oil suppliers without increased cost.

        Nice situation if you can get 2 oil executives into the White House who can invade not just one, but 2 countries in the Middle East, and to continue the wars and occupation for years and years.

  • Thinkin5

    I’m always amused when Repcons say “things cost more now under Obama!” In case they missed it, that’s been true forever! That’s the way the economy works. Companies keep charging more and more to make more and more money, decade after decade. The problem is that wages aren’t keeping up. The Repcons don’t even want minimum wage to keep up.

    • William

       Not really. Consumer electronics are dirt cheap and have more features.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

    How do you compromise with evil?

    And that’s not too strong a word for the Republicans of today.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

    We are all one country?

    Really?

    Because if I’m not mistaken the Right has worked to make sure that this country is deliberately and irreparably divided.

    • Gregg Smith

      Divided? Who is saying Republicans want dirty air, dirty water, back alley abortions or to throw Grandma off a cliff? Who said Romney is a felon and Ryan a liar? Who tells people that business owner’s hard work is not a cause for pride or achievement? Who tells blacks Republicans are “Going to put ya’ll back in chains”? Who tells Republicans to sit in the back? Who tells the poor the rich want autistic children to suffer so they can get a tax cut? Who insist to blacks this is a racist nation and they are doomed forever to the station in life they come from? Who tells Catholics they cannot freely practice their religion? Who?

      • http://www.facebook.com/stewsburntmonkey David Stewart

        Eastwood’s imaginary Obama?

        • Gregg Smith

          It all happened.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

        I think you are confusing facts with lies.

        Republicans want all of those things. They just don’t want people to know that’s what they want until they have the House, the Senate and the White House so they can cut the throats of Americans.

        • Gregg Smith

          That’s a very unifying comment.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

             I’m not for unifying. The time is past. Time to go our separate ways.

        • William

           Really? Why did Obama loan money to Brazil for their off shore oil projects? That is one of the most risky off shore oil projects in the world.

      • Human898

        Yes who IS telling people that?  Please offer us real examples and full context.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

         The Right Wing Hate Propaganda media has been vilifying the Left for decades now.

        Surely you know that or are you a newly awoken virgin in a deep sleep for these past decades?

      • J__o__h__n

        Who is saying Republicans want dirty air, dirty water,  — Their environmental record and calls for more deregulation indicate that policies they favor will result in this.  Dirty air and water aren’t the goal but profits are a higher priority.

        back alley abortions – the inevitable consequence of banning abortion

        or to throw Grandma off a cliff? –  The Ryan budget will destroy Medicare

        Who said Romney is a felon – probably an overstatement but he filed with the SEC and now denies he ran the Bain

        and Ryan a liar? – even Fox News and a running magazine

        Who tells people that business owner’s hard work is not a cause for pride or achievement? – a misquote

        Who tells blacks Republicans are “Going to put ya’ll back in chains”? – He wasn’t addressing black Republican

        Who tells Republicans to sit in the back? – I don’t know what this means.

        Who tells the poor the rich want autistic children to suffer so they can get a tax cut? – Same principle as their environmental views

        Who insist to blacks this is a racist nation and they are doomed forever to the station in life they come from? – Blacks realize this is a racist nation that has made progress but still needs to make progress.  How is helping people get ahead through government programs dooming people?

        Who tells Catholics they cannot freely practice their religion? – No one.  Churches are exempt.  Everyone else follows the same rules as other employers.  No special rights to deny employees coverage. 

      • Steve__T

         That’s Sick and twisted.

  • MrNutso

    You mean the democrats that voted for 2 tax cuts, 2 wars and medicare part d?

  • Thinkin5

    Have you noticed that a Republican never asks if the country can afford another war? Another increase in military spending? Another subsidy for the oil companies? Never even crosses their minds. 

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Have you asked Ron Paul lately?  He’s a real Republican, not the modern Neocons and State Capitalists just like the Democrats.

      The fact that Ron Paul perspective is absent from these conversations, now that we have the establishment horse race in place, is truly depressing, yet thoroughly predictable.

      • Human898

        Have you asked Ron Paul’s fellow party members why they don’t seem to want a “real republican”?
        Ron Paul will implement all his ideas how?   Wishful thinking?

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          With open minded people like you dropping your DNC allegiance and supporting from the grassroots.

          Is this supposed to be easy?

      • J__o__h__n

        Last week was the week to complain about Ron Paul being ignored.  How are you and not the majority of Republican voters the arbiter of who is the real Repubilcan? 

    • William

       Obama went to war against Libya. He has a secret military mission in Central African countries. He is supporting a dictator in Yenen with drones, special forces, bombs. Who is the war monger?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1155042916 Mike Hanson

    Obama’s record on the economy so far:

    Median incomes: These have fallen 7.3% since Obama took office, which translates into an average of $4,000. Since the so-called recovery started, median incomes continued to fall, dropping $2,544, or 4.8%.

    Long-term unemployed: More than three years into Obama’s recovery, 811,000 more still fall into this category than when the recession ended.

    Poverty: The poverty rate climbed to 15.1% in 2010, up from 14.3% in 2009, and economists think it may have hit 15.7% last year, highest since the 1960s.

    Food stamps: There are 11.8 million more people on food stamps since Obama’s recovery started.

    Disability: More than 1 million workers have been added to Social Security’s disability program in the last three years.

    Gas prices: A gallon of gas cost $1.89 when Obama was sworn in. By June 2009, the price was $2.70. Today, it’s $3.84.

    Misery Index: When Obama took office, the combination of unemployment and inflation stood at 7.83. Today it’s 9.71.

    Union membership: Even unions are worse off under Obama, with membership dropping half a million between 2009 and 2011.

    Debt: Everyone is far worse off if you just look at the national debt. It has climbed more than $5 trillion under Obama, crossing $16 trillion for the first time on Tuesday and driving the U.S. credit rating down.

    • nj_v2

      My roof leaked a couple of times since Obama’s been in office. I’m voting for Romney.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1155042916 Mike Hanson

        Yes, because a leaking roof is comparable to our nation’s economic malaise. 

        • Mouse_2012

          he’s joking

    • Human898

      Reference to data?  How about a reference to the net gain or loss of the previous administration for the purposes of relativity?

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

    Current List of Grover Norquest Treasonous Pledge Signers for the 112th Congress

    http://atr.org/current-list-taxpayer-protection-pledge-signers-a5597

    • Gregg Smith

      Gotta love Grover!

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

         Yeah, a pile of treasonous shit never stops stinking.

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          I was gonna caution you that “treason is a bit of a strong term” for Norquist.

          But then I remembered how many righties pledged their allegiance to Grover, rather than that whole “actual governance” thing that Republicans demonstrated they could do before they wanted to drown government in a bathtub.

          Carry on.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    All millionares? Who wants or expects that?

    Caller needs to go back to econ 101 and put away the class resentment of the few who do squirt into millionaire land.

    • Human898

      How about resentment of the many that make up what amounts to a millionaire income?

    • J__o__h__n

      Yet another person who isn’t as enlightened as you.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marc-Prufer/1642102712 Marc Prufer

    We need taxes to meet 30% of GDP it’s that simple.  The Republicans are, as usual, spinning the situation related to the deficit as out of control spending– the only spending out of control is defense and national security spending.  You never hear that defense is going broke — only the social safety net!  Starve the beast is the GOP path and people believe it to their own demise.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Taxes at 30% of GDP will shrink the GDP.  Go back to Econ 101.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marc-Prufer/1642102712 Marc Prufer

        Right now taxes are at a historical low — if you Republicans want your wars and defense spending and don’t want to cut medicare on the current elderly and keep advocating policies that impede the creation of high paying jobs– it needs to be 30%.  You need to go back to school if you think you’re going to cut the deficit without raising taxes to meet the rising needs of the baby boomers and your out of control spending on national security. You should take History 101 — remember it was a republican president that warned against the industrial military complex.

        • William

           Why not just cut spending? Obama cut 716 billion out of Medicare so why not make similar cuts to all government agencies and programs. If the elderly have to tighten their belts why can’t government tighten it’s belt?

          • jimino

            You apparently haven’t seen the apoplectic hair-on-fire reaction of every Republican at even the possibility, that the defense cuts resulting from the deficit deal THAT THEY VOTED FOR would actually take effect.  So you hold Republicans responsible for not cutting government spending, right?

          • William

             The Democrats in Va are crying the blues too at defense cuts. Start cutting overseas bases, deployments etc…nobody will notice and not much flack from various members of Congress. Especially if you relocated the U.S. Navy ships from Yokosuka Japan to Florida or Georgia.

      • Human898

        Can you provide us evidence of your allegation?   Where has the job and economic growth been with the taxes at their current rate? Yes, additional taxes on those that are having a tough time making expenses is not going to help the economy, what about an increase in the rate of those whose unearned income has profited from the firing and laying off of lower and middle income earners? Some of them seem to believe they’re going to really have a hard time of it, like their fellow lower and middle wage earners, the ones they fired and laid off. I suppose if one considers an after tax rate increase income of $250,000 or better struggling. One less car elevator? One less mansion when one has 3,4,5 or 6? Funny that some very wealthy people believe wealthy people should pay more taxes, especially to help pay down their nation’s debt. How silly is that?

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marc-Prufer/1642102712 Marc Prufer

           Right.  The republicans achieved cutting government by cutting government jobs (teachers, police, etc) which added to the unemployment rate!  Which decreased the tax base.  Why is a job not a job?  It appears to me that starve the beast is starving our economy.  We need a public transportation system that connects everyone everywhere.  We need an electrical grid that is fail proof.  We need to invest in education and in human capital.

          • William

             Is there a country in the world that spend more on education than us? I would support giving parents part or all of the federal money sent to schools so they could send their children to private schools or home school their children.

        • William

           Buffett called for higher taxes, while his company owes billions in back taxes. He has his so why does he prevent me from getting mine? He established a trust fund to dodge taxes on his wealth after he dies so should I trust him?
          Do higher taxes encourage people to take risks and start a business or discourage them? What is the magical number? 39 percent or FDR’s 95 percent? What is unearned income? Food Stamps? Housing assistance? WIC? These should be taxed right? if not? why not?

          • Human898

            The reality is more than just Mr. Buffet’s companies have not fully resolved and settled the amount of taxes owed, but some will not expose others in the same boat and characterize what is occurring as something else for political reasons.  

            The amount of increase on what income level can be debated and discussed, but only after there is an agreement that cutting it further increases the spending gap, not decreases it.    The difference between Mr. Buffet, Mr. Gates and those who refuse to pay anything more in taxes and instead want further cuts, defines the political lines.   People might go back and reread the definition of greed and relate it to those who have few if any objections to paying what they owe and paying more to help those or a nation in need versus those who refuse to pay more to help out a nation they helped put into debt and are still seeking to give up even less than they do now to help out.   There are some very well off and wealthy people representing all political factions and including “independents”, but there is one defining factor when it comes to helping to pay down debt, if for no other reason, by raising their rate of tax.

            It seems quite obvious that some people have no problems with facing hard choices (paying more taxes to quickly help pay down the debt they are concerned about) that would be placed upon them, while others make choices that would benefit themselves above all else.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

           Mr. Prufer was advocating doubling the tax burden from the current 15% of GDP to 30%. 

          Please explain how that will happen and who will pay for it?  Let’s say we tax the top 1% at 100%, how much additional revenue do you believe will be collected?

    • William

       Raising taxes is just pushing austerity into the economy which does not seem to be working in the EU.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marc-Prufer/1642102712 Marc Prufer

         If taxes go toward job creation and investments in the future, like public transportation and energy — then there is a net benefit — taxes in EU that just go to pay bankers debt doesn’t work.

        • William

           Why not just exempt for 3 or 4 years any company that hires new employees from paying workman’s comp. insurance and unemployment insurance. If the employee wants that insurance they can pay for it out of their pocket. You have to hire someone and pay the FICA taxes that is it. Also, only charge a dollar for a business license. Step back and see what happens.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marc-Prufer/1642102712 Marc Prufer

         Perhaps 30% is too high, but it depends on what your priorities are — if you want to invest in the future — while amintaining current programs, teachers, police, etc., then we need more revenue — I think we can do with less military spending — and then taxes should still be at 20% minimum!

        • William

           Invest? You mean spend, but does spending for the sake of spending make us better off in the future? Most of the high tech gains are by guys in their garage (HP/Apple) or apartment (Google), taking risk, doing what they love rather and working for themselves without government assistance. 
          Teachers, police, firemen are not hurting. Just ask CA/IL/NY/NJ…they are going broke trying to finance those public sector unions.
          Certainly the military should be cut back, remove troops from the Middle East, African, Europe, Japan, etc…but do we need the Dept. of Labor/Education/Energy? Or at least cut all agencies across the board by 20 percent.

    • modavations

      The Defense Budget is about 700Billion this year.Welfare is just shy of one trillion That’s not Social Security,or Medicare.During JFK the Defense expenditure was 50% of the budget.Today it’s 5%ish

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/PAMWAJGHAT4B7ROPQIKAMEHXOY Tim

    when you  have most of our money going to the war pigs , corporate wealthfare, and the banksters- there isn’t much left for healthcare, housing, education, etc… goerge W made a huge hole, about the size of the Twin Towers in our economy- TWO WARS, BANK BAILOUT” TARP”, INSURANCE COMPANIES BAILOUT, SUPPORTING CHENEY, ETC. It will take longer than four years to recover . Also, our economy is still based on VOODOO ECONOMICS! No taxes on the first $30,000 a person makes. Tax the crap out of speculative and arbitrage investments and bring back GLASS-STIEGALL! Infrastructure should only be done by US for US-NO FORIEN COMPANIES OR LABORERS. The money stays in this country!We need to publicly (STATE) OWN OUR NATURAL RESOURCES. We become shareholders of our own gas, oil, coal, etc…

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Guess what, its ALL unaffordable and will stifle the dynamic nature of our economy/society as well as our unique American Experiment freedoms, if you insist on the Government deciding/providing everything.

      Basic safety nets, otherwise, be productive and creative, and prosecute the 2-party financial cronies and we will be fine. 

      Yes really.

      If all this moronic partisan D-R bickering energy were put toward re-examining and implementing Rule of Law for everybody, including the currently above the law elites in both parties/ Wall St., we would gave a VASTLY BETTER country.

      No Socialism required.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marc-Prufer/1642102712 Marc Prufer

         Socialism?  Was it socialism when Bush and republican treasury Sec. and republican fed chief gave no strings attached bailout to wall street?  Was it socialism when he awarded $1Billion no bid contract to Haliburton?  Was it socialism when he created the largest federal agency — homeland security?  what about the Medicare Part D give away — was that socialism?

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          State Capitalism. Look it up.

        • modavations

          That’s inaccurate the banks paid the money back and interest.The funds were not returned to the Treasury,however,they were spent.

      • Human898

        So if your friends are in there controlling things as you see fit they’re referred to as what?  Their efforts to bring things in line to what your described Utopia is, would be described as what?  “Non-government”?

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          Utopia? So now Self-government, and a Constitutionally-based limited government that upholds the concept of Rule of Law is Utopian?

          Ok, so now the whole American Experiment is “Utopia” and the Socialistic failures of recent history are empirical truth?

          Don’t confuse our corrupted state capitalism with what our founders and limited government libertarians intended.

          http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com/2011/10/bill-black-interviewed-on-democracy-now.html

          • Human898

            “Self government” as in what?  Ensuring one does not place a burden on their auto, life, home, health or any other insurance insurance pool by being irresponsible with their personal health habits?  Right now, those who consciously take some care in living healthful and responsible lives are paying out the nose for those who lack self-governance.  

            Those who have managed try to live within their means and put a little of their expendable income into savings and investments rather than their mattreses, for a modest ROI and live modestly, not extravagantly, paid dearly for the lack of self-governance that caused both the Great Depression and the second worst financial crisis since.   Likely they would have paid even more dearly if the bleeding wasn’t stopped. Yes, also at an expense, but a lesser one. Like the difference between the expense of a medical bill and dying or solving a medical problem when it can be inexpensively treated versus waiting till it is massively expensive and a long recovery required.

            Are you suggesting the current government is not Constitutionally based or limited? 

            When was the last time you read the Preamble to the Constitution and what it entrusts as a republican (defined as non-hereditary, elected representative form of government) representative democracy with?

            The U.S. Code is NOT the Constitution, but it more specifically details how the charges of government are to be carried out within both the scope of power and limitation of power of those who take an oath to uphold the Constitution, including those states, united under it.

            I believe you are mistaking “libertatrianism” to mean something you are not representing. 

            A better America may perhaps begin again, with people respecting the existence of one another, being fair, honest, just, charitable, humble, modest, comromising and a whole host of other things listed as virtuous human characteristics, rather than take up those universally thought of as the opposite and try to reinvent them as being virtuous when they offer personal profit, “sinful” when they do not. I believe most people would agree to a stable, balanced, mutually respectful society. Thise who prefer to the impatient get-rich-quick, regardless of the impact on their fellow citizens or humans, those who have more than enough for multiples to live in comfort, yet are never satisfied what they have is enough (see definition of greed) do not and will not like the idea of a stable, sustainable, balanced society.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Did you steal the Haliburton hurricane machine last week?  You need some better training because you missed Tampa.

    • burroak

           Like your comment. Lets expand on these ideas: When you look around your house, apartment, or workplace, everything you see was made by hand….why not make it here in this one-of-a-kind-great nation: United States of America. Before I write of list of items, what would it mean to bring back manufacturing to the United States.     
           Say Dewalt tool was manufacturing in Baltimore, or Apple was manufacturing in Chicago; now peolpe are back to work, making money, renting apartments, buying homes, hiring the trades: electricians, plumbers, carpenters, plasters, painters, landscapers, to renovate their new purchases. Every part of the economy is connected, by one degree or another.
          This talented nation possess great entrepreneurship and ingeniuty, why can’t we reignite our American craftsmanship and have a rebirth of Made in the U.S.A.
           So, a quick list of items that are scantily made in this great country:
         Silverware….cookware(except All-Clad…and hats of to them)….radios…televisions….watches….furniture….books….microwaves…dishwashers….stoves….refrigerators….washer machines…dryers…..airconditioners…fasterners(nails of all kinds, screws, bolts, etc.)….patio furniture…plumbing products….electrical components…automotive supplies and parts….computers and their gadgets…cell phones…printers….fax machines…solor panels….boats…trucks…heavy equipment….stationary supplies….clothing(only 4% of all clothes we wear are made in the U.S.A)…speakers….tools of all sorts: hammers, drills, saws, vises, levels, measuring tapes, power tools, etc. You can add to the list, but here is the kicker: all of these products are American companies.  Why cant we bring back the manufacturing. Why? Is it too expensive to make here. Germany does not think so when they make there mercedez and BMW at home.  And, guess what number they are in Europe’s economy. Let the American worker share in a company’s success. If CEO’s can make millions why cant the middle class make a living?  

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

     Republicans will claim they are against all of those after the fact.

    Of course, Ryan voted for them all.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/PAMWAJGHAT4B7ROPQIKAMEHXOY Tim

    HELPING OUT THE ELITE ISN’T SOCIALISM???

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/GYOKNNUKGSRTSA4RNFMUJRO5WE Greg

       That’s just crony capitalism.

    • ulTRAX2

      As Chomsky has said… the Right in the US favors socialism for the rich, dog-eat-dog capitalism for everyone else.

      • William

         But the Left is loaded with wealthy people…Pelosi, Reid, Obama, Clinton, actors, producers, Buffett, Gates, ..there are many people on the left that are loaded and demand their share of breaks. Look how Apple and Google, major supporters of the Left do everything possible to avoid paying more in taxes.

        • Mouse_2012

          “Pelosi, Reid, Obama, Clinton, actors, producers, Buffett, Gates, ..”

          you mean “sic” Job Creators?

        • modavations

          The IRS has been chasing Buffet for 1 billion in arrears for quite a spell

          • Mike_Card

            And poor Warren is the ONLY one the IRS is in a tussle with.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Chomsky great on criticizing the power elite for sure, but comes up short with realistic and pragmatic prescriptions for economic model.

        “Chomsky’s Economics”http://mises.org/daily/1132

        • ulTRAX2

          Why does he have to?

          Ah gee… Mises again? Let me guess your old user names here…

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            That’s the substantive rebuttal to the essay? Why not follow a guy with good criticism but no actionable, pragmatic vision? And you don’t like the messenger?

          • ulTRAX2

            I respect his CRITIQUES of US economic and foreign policy. To say he’s not offered alternatives that suit you doesn’t detract from the validity of those critiques.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            If only it was about me. It’s about historical empiricism.

          • modavations

            CRYTOMORPH?

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Rule of Law 101.  It’s your friend, not your enemy, in case you were confused.

    http://www.independent.org/students/essay/essay.asp?id=1612

    Rule of Law or Rule of Central Bankers?:

    http://www.cato.org/pubs/journal/cj30n3/cj30n3-3.pdf

    Diversity, Ends, Means:

    http://www.thefreemanonline.org/headline/diversity-ends-rules/

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/PAMWAJGHAT4B7ROPQIKAMEHXOY Tim

    YOU KNOW THAT RITT ROMNEY IS NOT THE ANSWER TO OUR PROBLEMS, HE IS THE PROBLEM! OBAMA CAN’T DO IT ALONE, HE NEEDS A SUPPORTING CONGRESS TO BACK HIM UP!

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      (A reply to above comment: “State Capitalism = Fascism”, before edited by author…)

      Brought to you by:

      Clinton, Bush, Obama, Greenspan, Geithner, Summers, Paulson, Bernanke etc etc etc.

      (On truth about Greenspan, a Central Banker, not libertarian. Actions speak much louder than words, even thought its a great anti-libertarian temptation to bring up AG as the ultimate failure of libertarianism. Sorry, you have to dig deeper.):

      http://www.lewrockwell.com/mcmaken/mcmaken132.html

      Might as well throw in the connection to Foreign Policy:

      http://www.lewrockwell.com/rothbard/rothbard66.html

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    This video is about “progressive” hero Glenn Greenwald explaining the importance of Ron Paul to the masses:
    http://www.salon.com/2011/12/31/progressives_and_the_ron_paul_fallacies/singleton/

  • modavations

    The Left has the 5 Year Plan,the Right has Adam Smith’s Invisible hand.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501226575 Tom Gee

    Hey, Tom. Julian Castro isn’t the first Latino mayor of San Antonio, as you reported. Remember Henry Cisneros?!

  • modavations

    “It is a paradoxical truth that tax rates are too high and tax revenues are too low and the soundest way to raise the revenues in the long run is to cut the rates now…cutting taxes now is not to incur a budget deficit,but to achieve the more prosperous,expanding economy which can bring a budget surplus

    JFK Nov.20 1962

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Can you stop that? JFK was not a socialist! We are Moving Forward now……

    • hennorama

      Income tax rates in 1960 ranged from 20% to 91%, so there was room to cut.  That is no longer the case.

      Also, keep in mind that INCOME taxes are not the only source of Federal revenue.  In 2011, income taxes were 47.4% of Federal revenue.  Payroll taxes were 35.6% and corporate taxes were a whopping 7.9%.  Custom duties, excise taxes and estate and gift taxes made up the remainder.

      Since 1960, there have been a total of only 6 years of Federal revenues exceeding Federal outlays (surplus), 4 of which occurred from 1998 through 2001, during the time of that noted tax cutter Bill Clinton.  The others were 1960 and 1969.

      As a percentage of GDP, average Federal revenue (taxes, fees, etc.) during these surplus years averaged 19.55% versus the average of the Bush II years (17.08%) and the Obama years (15.43% with the 2012 figures estimated).  Please note that I attribute the years 2001 to Clinton and 2009 to Bush, since their budgets had the greatest impact on those years, not the incoming President’s.  This is arguable, but I wanted to be clear.

      Revenues vs. GDP are VERY low right now – 2010 was 15.1%, 2011 was 15.4% and the estimate for 2012 is 15.8%.  The last time Federal revenue as a percentage of GDP was this low was back in 1949 and 1950.

      And income tax RATES are also historically low.  There’s really no room to cut.

    • J__o__h__n

      Who passed JFK’s tax cut?  Lyndon Johnson.  Feel free to quote him on government spending to help people. 

    • Steve__T

       NEWS FLASH *** It’s 2012

  • ulTRAX2

    Some here continue to defend the irresponsible Bush tax cuts and his sabotaging debt pay down… pretending we can never know what they really cost in revenue… so all we should do is IGNORE all those low revenue years and focus on the two years when revenues finally exceeded Clinton’s last year.

    The intellectual bankruptcy behind such a position is staggering, but to be expected from True Believers on the Right who embrace the Orwellian Right’s claims that LOWER revenues, perhaps in the range of 2.4 TRILLION is “proof” such irresponsible tax cuts create revenue booms. Others argue that if JFK cut taxes, even though he stopped at a 70% top rate… he’d favor cutting taxes FOREVER.

    Here are the numbers… all in $2005 constant dollars.

    Column 1: the Fiscal Year.

    Column 2: revenues in billions of constant 2005 dollars from Table 1.3 THE BUDGET FOR FISCAL YEAR 2013, HISTORICAL TABLES.

    Column 3: net loss of revenue compared to Clinton’s last year.

    Column 4: Estimated CUMULATIVE loss of revenue over Clinton’s last year. Remember this is just a FLAT projection of Clinton revenues into the Bush years. In reality, revenues tend to GROW from an expansion of the economy… so revenues would no doubt be higher. Higher still if Bush and the GOP had not destroyed the economy in 2008.  

    2000… 2,309.2 Clinton’s last year

    2001… 2,214.3   -94.9     -94.9

    2002… 2,027.9   -281.3    -357.9

    2003… 1,900.5   -408.7    -784.6

    2004… 1,949.3   -359.9    -1144.5

    2005… 2,153.6   -155.6    -1300.1

    2006… 2,324.6   +15.4     -1284.7

    2007… 2,413.1    +103.9   -1180.8

    2008… 2,288.1     -21.1   -1159.7

    2009… 1,899.0    -410.2   -1569.9

    2010… 1,927.9   -381.3    -1951.2

    2011… 1,998.7   -310.5    -2261.7

    2012. 2,089(est)  -219      -2481 BILLION ESTIMATED LOST REVENUE TO BUSH TAX CUTS Remember this is a LOW estimate.

    • ulTRAX2

      There’s another part of the Laffer Curve theory that the Tax Cut Crazies on the Right sweep under the table: if tax rates are too LOW, they will FAIL to capture enough revenue. The inflation adjusted revenue numbers above PROVE tax rates have been SOOOOOO low that even before the Bush Recession for six of Bush’s eight years, revenues were below Clinton’s last year.

  • modavations

    “A tax cut means higher family income and higher business profits and a balanced federal budget.Every tax payer and his family will have more money left over after taxes for a new car,a new home,new conveniences,education and investment.Every businessman can keep a higher percentage of his profit in his cash register ,or  put it towards expanding or improving his business and as the national income grows,the Fed.Govt. will ultimately end up with more revenues.

    JFK Sept 18 1963

    • Human898

      What was the top mariginal income tax rate then?

      • modavations

        It is a philosophy.It is Ayn Rand,it is Hyack,it is Adam Smith.

  • modavations

    “We are Socialists,we are enemies of todays Capitalistic system for the exploitation of the economically weak,with it’s unfair salaries….”

    While you might think that a quip from any ‘garden variety” OWSer,you’d be remiss.
    Adolph Hitler Berlin 1925

           Ironically the villains in the new Batman Movie are OWSers.More ironically,the movie theater massacre was done by an OWSer.

    • Human898

      What did Hitler think of communists? 

      • modavations

        Rats eating rats

        • Human898

          What did Hitler think of multi-culturalism? How did Hilter propose to purify the world and make it as he thought it should be? Who did Hitler’s bidding? What was Hitler pushing? Who did his “socialism” want to exclude? Wealthy Aryans? American Jews have mostly voted for which political party and why?

  • modavations

    Viewership ratings from last night were down 25%,from the 2008 Dem.Convention

    • Steve__T

       That’s because computers are not listed as TV viewers And more watched with their computers.

  • modavations

    Under the President’s stewardship ,300,000 Net Jobs have been created.Haven’t we had enough of Castro Brothers?

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Get over the horse race and Engage:

    Websites, Books, Links:

    http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com/p/important-websites-and-orgs.html

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Nassim Taleb: I am not a libertarian – but Ron Paul is the only candidate addressing fundamental issues facing the USA

    http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com/2012/03/nassim-taleb-i-am-not-libertarian-but.html

  • ulTRAX2

    Anyone else want to take the No MODA Pledge? I will not directly respond to his unsubstantiated and off topic postings. He had been the most disruptive, idiotic, and off-topic poster here who floods the forum with blather… and of all people banned… his was the most justified. Now he’s back.

    • modavations

      Reactionaries fear open debate.

    • jimino

      On the contrary, I welcome his comments since he is the perfect representative of what passes for current conservative thinking. 

      • ulTRAX2

        I’d agree if he coherently posted on topic and provided credible sources. But not when he babbling about off topic nonsense, making unsubstantiated claims, pining for the days when he was eating lead paint bragging it did no brain damage, flooding the forum, and trying to prove he’s better than us even though he’s a college dropout and his pathetic business is failing.

        • jimino

          As I said, a perfect representative of current so-called conservative thinking.  If that isn’t the case we would see some of our so-called conservative posters on this site take him on or at least disagree occasionally.  Instead, they “like” his comments.  I like to know my enemy, even if they are irrational.

          • ulTRAX2

            Moda isn’t even representitive of the large body of True Believers on the Right. His only contribution to the forum is to disrupt or destroy it.

          • Gregg Smith

            And just what has this thread contributed?

  • modavations

    JFK is the Father of Trickle down Economics.Along with the other great Tax Cutters,Ronaldus Magnus and Bill Clinton,45 million jobs were created and the Treasury was awash in receipts.Even Bush’s tax cuts were tonic.The Bush tax cuts went 66% to the Poor,30% to the Middle and 6% to the rich.Revenues to the Treasury were 25% over projections,but spending rose 66%.And therein lies the rub.To paraphrase Jim Carville “it’s the spending,stupids”.
          Were we to raise the rates on the rich it yields 70billionish a  year.
                    We will pay 457 billion in interest alone on the debt this year.457Billion this year alone

    • Human898

      So what happened under GWB’s tax cuts?  Read the title of those laws.   Are you complaining about lack of economic and job growth? Are you complaining about government not creating jobs while complaining about national debt, while looking for another cut in revenue to pay the nation’s debts? Who spends and raises revenue to pay for spending? Who spends and cuts revenue to pay for their spending? The spending gap is defined how? Do you take a cut in pay each time you go out and buy a new and more expensive house?

      When businesses fire and lay off employees to increase their profit margins, what happens to the unemployment rate? How do the unemployed buy MORE goods and services? How do they need LESS asssitance? Whose vicious cycle is this?

    • J__o__h__n

      Your misquoting is almost as bad as Mitt’s Obama ad during the primary. 

    • Joseph_Wisconsin

      You know I really get tired of the enduring myth that Ronald Reagan’s tax cuts were a magic formula that was totally responsible for the economic growth during the 1980′s.  All the Ronald Reagan years proved was that Keynesian economics works.  If the federal government greatly cuts taxes and greatly increases spending it will result in economic growth.  The downside of that is that it also produces deficits, in the case of Reagan deficits of for the time record setting magnitude for every year of his presidency.  

                     Fiscal                                Surplus/
                     Year    Revenue   Spending  Deficit
      Jimmy
      Carter      1981   599.3     678.2        -79.0
      Ronald
      Reagan    1982    617.8     745.7      -128.0
                     1983   600.6     808.4      -207.8
                     1984   666.4     851.8      -185.4
                     1985   734.0     946.3      -212.3
                     1986   769.2     990.4      -221.2
                     1987   854.3    1,004.0    -149.7
                     1988   909.2    1,064.4    -155.2
                     1989   991.1    1,143.7    -152.6
      George
      Bush        1990 1,032.0   1,253.0    -221.0  #
       

      I do not want Romney to be elected as I am sure it would be the worst possible thing that could happen to at least 75% of the population of the country.  However, I sure wish that it was possible to actually see what would happen if Romney/Ryan were elected and if they indeed managed to put through their ideas of even greater tax cuts for the wealthy and drastic cuts in federal spending (except for the military), including big cuts in programs that benefit the middle and lower class.  How much would the economy grow? What segments of the population would wind up better off?

      # Billions of $ Source for numbers as opposed to some here who just pull things out of their a**.    
      http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/data/budget.php

      • ulTRAX2

        And let’s not forget that much of Reagan’s revenue came from his tax hikes. The Orwellian Right dishonestly pretends all revenue came as a feedback from his irresponsible ERTA tax cuts.

        • Joseph_Wisconsin

           True that.  Another important part of the story is that the numbers cited, revenue and spending, include revenue from payroll taxes for SS and Medicare and expense for same.  The total combined payroll tax rate (employee and employer contributions) increased from 12.26% (calender year 1980) to 15.02% (calender year 1989).  While the Republicans like to talk about the costs of these programs as though these are the programs that have been responsible for the deficits (not at all actually), they do not like to talk about the regressive payroll taxes that have more than paid for program expenses.  A tax that only applies to every cent earned in wage income and only up to a low limit of taxable income  does not fit their “rich are over taxed narrative” obviously.

          It is also informative to look at the payroll tax revenue versus SS and Medicare spending over those Reagan years.  See link: http://www.ssa.gov/history/trustfunds.html  An accurate picture of the effect of  the Reagan income  tax cuts on government revenue, spending, and deficits would account for the sharp increase in payroll tax collection over this period, rising from $142.4 billion in 1981 to $315.4 billion in 1990, as well as contribution to reducing the total real deficits—true deficits would increase if not counting as offsets the surpluses in Medicare and SS.

  • modavations

    The second largest cause of bankruptcy in Canada in the 55 to 65 yr. range is medical bills.

    • Human898

      References to real evidence?

    • jimino

      Must have been those Canucks who went to the USA for their care.

      • Human898

        Like all the Americans that go to Canada to buy prescription drugs

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Solyndra!!!

    Where is Obama’s Hoover Dam?  After all, he had $5.4T in deficit spending to date.  What did we get for that investment?
     

    • Human898

      What percent of the total government investment in energy (see oil subsidies) did the Solyndra loan represent?   Who’s calling for the government to institute restrictions on dumping of goods on the United States because the dumping nation’s have fewer regulations, lower paid workers and high government subsidies for alternative energy?   Who fires American workers so they can hire workers in some of the nation’s dumping here at a lower wage, increasing profit margins in the short term? Who’s suggesting we need to continue oil subsidies to companies like one that paid their CEO a compensation worth $34 million in 2011?

      Do unemployed Americans need less or more temporary assistance? Who’s firing and laying them off and hiring foreign workers? Who says they are worried about national debt, until asked to put their wealth and abundance where their mouths are?

      • William

         Was the Solyndra loan rejected by the Bush administration but rushed through by the Obama administration?
        Bush put tariffs on imported steel 2002.
        GE closed it’s 110 year old Xray factory in the USA and moved production to China. GE is a major Obama supporter via NBC/CNBC and it’s CEO is on Obama’s jobs council
        Why does Apple/Google receive tax breaks when their CEO’s walk away with hundreds of millions of dollars in salary and stock options.
        Do unemployed Americans realize that the unemployment payments they receive are paid by the business community and eventually they will have to pay more which won’t encourage them to start hiring again?
        Did Obama say he would cut the deficit in half during his first term?

        • Human898

          Let’s start here:
          Do employers who fire and lay off American employees realize the unemployment payments they make will be used by those they fire and lay off and that it won’t encourage those that fire and lay off to hire them back?   Could it be possible the CEO of GE is looking for a way to bring jobs back to America and Americans and sitting at the table on the Jobs Council discussing outsourcing problems and trying to come up with solutions to exporting jobs to nations that dump cheaper products here because of the same reasons GE might have gone to China, to capitalize?

          When you want to negotiate a peace settlement or a business deal, it would seem important that such compromises require that all parties be at the table, don’t you think?

          Who’s lobbying for Apple’s tax breaks, while their CEO’s walk away with hundreds of millions on salary and stock options?   Who would like to present a law that says if you take government subsidies, you pay your CEO’s a top multiple of the lowest paid.   The complaint will be that such limitations will mean lower quality CEO’s and stifled motivation.   But why don’t the same people who suggest low quality and stifled motivation in CEO’s offer the same defense for paying low and middle income earners MORE!?

          • William

            Could it be the CEO GE is a clown? Sitting on Obama’s job’s council and then sending jobs overseas? How does Obama sleep at night with an adviser like that making him look like a fool?
            Does Obama or anyone in his administration make remarks about the tax dodge schemes that Apple and Google use? Why not? Is it because they give money to Democrats?

    • hennorama

      Since you keep asking about the Hoover Dam, I’ll just repost my reply from the last time:

      “Using the Hoover Dam as an example is not close to appropriate.  The dam was authorized in 1928, 10 months BEFORE the Great Depression, and was built from 1931 to 1936, starting about 18 months after the beginning of the Great Depression, and taking nearly 5 YEARS.
      Should Pres. Obama have used a time machine to go back to 2007, to convince GeeDub to approve some massive construction project to begin in 2010 which would last until 2015?”

    • ulTRAX2

      What did we get from Bush’s 5 trillion deficit? Oh ya… he destroyed the economy.

  • modavations

    Laffer Curve is Ayn Rand applied to the economy.Ayn Rand says “Screw with the Job Creators too much and they’ll take their Sammys and Duck”…..Laffer Curve says when the tax rate gets to 40% people start dodging.This is why Democrats always peg the rate at 39.6%

    • Human898

      And how did Ayn Rand expect the “job creators” to single-handedly perform all the jobs they were “creating”, based on their need to create them? Or are you suggesting “job ceators” create jobs out of the goodness of their hearts and with money that fell out the sky and into their laps or they “created”, not because they have a need?   No thought of mutual benefit as in I need help, you look like you need work, let’s talk? Do million dollar compensation packages come from a CEO making 10 widgets a year to be bought by the unemployed or those that can’t afford to buy them?

  • TomK_in_Boston

    The only question that matters, the defining issue of our time for the USA, is: what are you going to do to stop all the wealth and income flowing away from the middle class and to the oligarchs.

    Tax cuts and vouchercare are not a solution, they’ll make the problem, which is very bad, worse.

    The dems offer baby steps.

    Still, the choice is obvious.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      If you’re a dedicated Democrat.

      The choice really is not obvious.

      If you are aware that the inevitable corruption between activist government power and establishment power will always be a challenge, regardless of good intentions, than continuing to put our eggs in the “trust the Good guys to take care of us” looks a lot worse than “lets make sure we have a Rule of Law framework, enforce the hell out of it, and otherwise leave people free to operate in society and markets.

      • J__o__h__n

        How does choosing the lesser of two evils automatically become trust people to take care of us?  You cram your warped views into everyone’s motives and expectations to construct strawmen. 

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          A rule of law society is an evil?

          What planet are you on? Are you that desperate to always disagree?

          • J__o__h__n

            The lesser of two evils was between the Democrats and the Republicans. 

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Apologies. Why are you satisfied with the lesser of two evils?

          • J__o__h__n

            I’m not but when there are only two options, I’ll select the better one.  The Democrats are very far from perfect but they are much much much better than the Republicans. 

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          John, your assignment:

          Just what does Classical Rule of Law mean, and how does it relate to the idea Liberty?

          Since you won’t do your homework, here is someone who did:

          http://www.independent.org/students/essay/essay.asp?id=1612

          • J__o__h__n

            I’m not reading links to cult sites or defining your buzzwords.  I have a degree in history and political science and have passed the MA and NY bar exams so I don’t need to answer your patronizing questions.  And I’m still waiting for a response to the multiple times I have asked you to provide a single criticism of Ron Paul. 

      • jimino

        “Rule of Law” is an empty phrase without focusing on what the law says.  When the law that rules is written by and for the benefit of wealthy cronies, it is no solution to call for the “rule of law”.

        Your constant repetition of these trite aphorisms of really of no practical benefit to finding a solution to what ails us.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          “When the law that rules is written by and for the benefit of wealthy cronies” 

          That’s the whole point!  Do you ever read any of those links regarding Classical Rule of Law and how it applies? How it is relevant to our financial crisis and the corrupt 2-party system that delivered it with the revolving door financial vampires in and out of our “self-government”?

          You guys always put up the current, FAILED, LACK of Classical Rule of Law situation, and try to claim that its absence proves “Rule of Law” is a”trite aphorism”.

          The problem is that very few today even understand classical rule of law, how far we are from it, and how that has enabled the lawlessness and corruption that has destroyed our economy and made us essentially serfs to our debt and the Corporatist Class.

          What are you disagreeing with, besides me, personally and my style?

          I give you Rule of Law links, Central Banking Skepticism Links, Bill Black Links, Glenn Greenwald links, CapitalismwithoutFailure links, all describing the nature of this stuff much better than I can, but you NEVER respond to ANY of the content provided?

          You really do care more about “winning” on a comment board, than deconstructing the status quo so we can build a grassroots consensus and move forward. Thats how it appears.

          • jimino

            I am not about “winning”.  I am about the real world, not philosophy.  What is the first step to be taken to reach your goals, given existing conditions, and who needs to take it and how do we enforce compliance with it?

          • Human898

            And you care about what?  A law that rules in favor of your personal or group’s agenda?   Just why does anyone believe the FED was intentionally designed to be independent and to involve not just bankers, but people (directors) of varying interests from various parts of the nation? (see Diversity of Sectors Represented by Federal Reserve Directors)

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          What do you think the point of this essay is?  Rule of Law or Rule of Central Bankers:

          http://www.cato.org/pubs/journal/cj30n3/cj30n3-3.pdf

          Look at the DISCRETIONARY power used to fuel the Bubble, and then to Bail out the perpetrators when it popped. Non-democratically- by pure discretion of the Paulson, Geithner, Bernanke, Greenspan, Rubin, Summers crowd.

          Why do you insist on defending these guys and there manipulation of our economy for academic experimentation at best and crony enrichment at worst?

          Its about Fundamental Principles now, which were the core of our country, but have now been so eroded and corrupted that we are listless and drifting in the Corporatist Sea.

          More Government “solutions” and “management” of economic sectors (ie housing, college, health care) is not the answer. Accountability, and limiting discretionary power by both Government and Finance Folks, VIA RULE OF LAW is the solution.

          The rest of us can do a better, more honest job, participating in open, free markets not manipulated by the Central Banking and Academic Finance Class.

          • Human898

            Still your premise seems to be, if only people had more personal freedom, they would be more responsible, yet you offer no proof that there widespread evidence of that beyond a few isolated examples, opinion pieces and idealist thoughts. 

            I’m all for it, now if we could just get the rest of the world to voluntarily be for it tomorrow we wouldn’t have to do things like use tourniquets to prevent patients who cut off their arms from bleeding to death.

      • Human898

        Yet you seem to suggest people will simply “behave” and be “responsible” and not continue to be corrupt if you have less government. You attack the government and “the people”, what’s left?   Or do you imagine some race of totally honest, totally responsible (to what and whom?) demi-gods or gods who are going to magically restrain the corrupt and claim to do so by merely by relabelling of such an action as something other than public governance for lack of individual “self-governance”?

        Making an appeal for people to be more virtuous based on a mutual benefit I can see, but claiming that society and government are all corrupt, at the same time trying to suggest all both need is more personal liberty, does not add up.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          Bill Black, prosecutor of S&L white collar crime, not Rule of Law enough, or not enough Government for you?

          http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com/2011/10/bill-black-interviewed-on-democracy-now.htmlThe difference between enforcing Rule of Law and basic Rules of the Game preventing corruption, cheating, etc etc, is a far cry from an Activist vision of Government.If you don’t appreciate the difference there is plenty to read and contemplate.

          http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com/2012/03/bill-black-usa-exports-flawed-economic.html

          You’ll notice this stuff is on Democracy Now and Bill Moyers, so of course it’s “safe” for consumption.

          • Human898

            I’ve read all the opinion pieces, including yours, why not answer questions put to you? There are examples of all that people refer to with regard to socially responsible capitalism, but it takes attitude and values shifts of not just a few, but many and sometimes parents just have to keep their children from hurting themselves more severely until they learn and understand on their own why their parents at one time pulled them out of the path of an oncoming car.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            So you have the paternalistic opinion that we “children”, those not as wise and enlightened as you, need to be controlled by better-informed people like you?

            I’m not talking about socially responsible capitalism. I’m talking about setting up the clear rules to the game, via legislation through our Representatives, whom we should hold VERY accountable from a grass roots level, to be actually doing what we expect. And that is establishing a clear framework of law to protect our liberties, which includes protection from theft, bodily harm, corruption and collusion.  We must insist these clear rules that are NOT DISCRETIONARILY BENT OR IGNORED OR CORRUPTLY LOOPHOLED FOR SOME, are vigorously enforced with meaningful, consequential Punishments.

            I don’t believe in micro-engineering a “socially responsible capitalism”. Markets will determine prices, with supply and demand and real competition.

            If basic rules against collusion, corruption, direct harm are broken in the market, people should be punished.

            Markets, supply and demand, within the basic rules, along with sound money (look it up), will let the market operate organically and effieciently. Suppy and Demand  should drive the economy, not behind the scenes manipulation of the economy by monetary policy bubble economics via Central Bankers and Executive Appointed Financial Technocrats, which is EXACTLY WHAT FUELED OUR CRISIS, WITH THE PRIVATE MARKET PLAYERS SIMPLY OPERATING WITHIN THE FUNNY MONEY GIVEN TO THEM BY THE FED, AND THE CORRUPTED REGULATORY STRUCTURE CREATED BY DECADES OF REVOLVING DOOR WASHINGTON/WALL ST  NONSENSE.

            What I have described is vastly different than the reality of our recent history.

            Using Rule of Law as I described is not the “lawless, or less-regulation” canard you like to place on me, it is in fact stronger regulation with regard to the worst and most corrupting elements of our economy/society.

            The mistake you make is thinking that Rule of Law, such as that, is further equivalent to an Activist Government in General, not just protecting our liberties, but CHOOSING OUR DIRECTIONS be the personal or economic based on some well-intentioned notions that elites have of the “best” way that we should live.

            That type of interventionist government, that participates in deciding our ENDS, instead of us driving it organically by the totality of our collective actions, instead of simply protecting our MEANS of making relatively free choices and value judgements, is a whole different beast.

          • Human898

            Look how you have acted here.  You would call that adultlike?

    • Brandstad

      Pew Research Calls It “Hollowing Out of the Middle Class,” But 150 Americans Moved Up for Every 100 Who Moved Down Between 1971 and 2011!

      • ulTRAX2
        • Brandstad

          Do you have any constructive comments?

          • ulTRAX2

            Suggesting you NOT plagiarize your posts isn’t constructive? Why did I know that’d be your position. How goddamn noble of you!

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

            Really? When Branny is plagarizing that means he’s copying from someone else rather than pulling stuff out his rectalial area.

            The former results in something closer to real than the latter ever could.

      • ulTRAX2

        You’re trying to conflate the disastrous Bush years with the 1971-1999 period. Why is that? To dishonestly place all the blame on Obama and absolve Bush? The actual title of the report is “Fewer, Poorer, Gloomier: The Lost Decade of the Middle Class” Since 2000, the middle class has shrunk in size, fallen backward in income and wealth, and shed some—but by no means all—of its characteristic faith in the future.

        http://www.pewsocialtrends.org/files/2012/08/pew-social-trends-lost-decade-of-the-middle-class.pdf

    • William

       Obama’s baby steps to fix Medicare is to take 716 billion out of it?

      • JGC

        How would you fix Medicare?

  • Brandstad

    We are almost 4 years into the Obama Presidency and we have yet to pass a budget, we have yet for one democrat to vote in favor of an Obama budget proposal, even though he has presented at least two! 

    The national debt has doubled

    Comparing the Obama recovery to the Reagan Recovery makes Obama look a lot like Jimmy Carter.

    Record numbers of people on Food Stamps.

    50% of Americans not paying any federal income tax.

    Gas prices have doubled!

    Healthcare costs have increased!

    College tuition at public schools has gone up faster than inflation!

    Do We really want 4 more years of this?

    • ulTRAX2

      Gee… no you’re right. I’d MUCH rather the Bush world of $4 gas, the banking, housing, and automotive sectors imploding, fighting an illegal war against a nation that posed no threat to us, Bush’s 5 trillion in new debt, pathetic revenues from irresponsible tax cuts, and losing 800k jobs a month.

      • Brandstad

        And Obama has done much better. 

        He is saving the US taxpayers money by killing suspected terrorists witout a judge jurry, trial, or any evadence and he doesn’t limit his death penalty judgements on only foreigners, he has intentionally sentenced at least one American to death witout trial!

        • ulTRAX2

          Hey B… the REAL question you’re trying to evade is whether the right wing policies YOU support were successful. It’s clear they FAILED DISASTROUSLY!! Rather than demonstrate some insight in confronting the intellectual bankruptcy of the GOP, you complain that Obama hasn’t cleaned up YOUR mess fast enough.

          • Brandstad

            What right wing policies failed?

            Did smaller Federal Government fail? NO, it wasn’t tried

            Did States Rights fail (Tenth Amendment)?  only in the sense that the federal government isn’t being limited to letter of the law stated in the Tenth amendment, which is a progressive democrat dream.

            Did increasing competition by breaking up “menopolys” fail? NO, big banks were made bigger and intertwined with other countries financial systems, which happens to be another democrat idea. 

            Did reducing government waste fail? no it hasn’t been tried

            Did a strong national defense fail? no we havn’t been challenged by any other nation.

          • ulTRAX2

            Gee… you’re always wearing those blinders so you can evade hard questions. How about irresponsible “supply side” tax cuts that have cost the government trillions in revenue? How about deregulation of the commodity and banking sectors that brought us unregulated derivatives and allowed banks to use consumer money to gamble on them? How about Bush allowing banks to leverage up to 40:1 of the assets? How about free trade which sabotaged the US industrial base and helped build Red China into our biggest economic… and soon military competitor? How about letting us become beholden to Red China for much of our debt? How about Bush promising to pay down debt then doing everything he could to INCREASE debt. Shall I go on? It doesn’t matter since as a slavish partisan, you’re intellectually incapable of ANY honest critique of the GOP. Which is why you’ll evade the points made here too.

            In the end BUSH AND THE GOP DEMOLISHED THE ECONOMY!!! Or were you in a coma for the last half of 2008. But I guess that’s not sufficient proof enough for you.

          • jimino

            Name one, just one is all I’m asking, single, Republican who has a history of actually supporting and acting to implement  the concepts you list.

          • ulTRAX2

            Partisans perfer party to principle. The GOP loves states rights as long as it advances a cause they care about. When states use those rights to do something the GOP opposes, then the GOP opposes states rights. Same sex marriage comes to mind.
             
             

          • modavations

            The reason we’re all so affluent is because we haven’t had a World War in 70 years.Mutually Assured Detterence was the term used.During JFK the Defense was half the budget.It’s about 5% now.The Heinous Welafare expenditure is just shy of 1 trillion.That’s not Medicare or S.Security

        • Human898

          Have you asked Saddam Hussein’s sons about your opinion?  I agree we should treat all equally where justice is concerned and I was critical of the way there was not, in my own thoughts, as much attention offered in that regard from Mr. Obama as there could have been or might have been to offer some small modicum of difference between our system of justice as opposed to that of vengeful “justice”. Now I am hearing that at least one person on that actual mission to capture or kill OBL is saying it was definitively NOT a kill mission without first attempting to capture. I personally was glad to hear as we would have a difficult time admonishing assassination and vengeance based “justice” if we hailed our doing the same.  I would say we have enough hypocrisies to live down as it is.  I think if we are honest with ourselves and our nation’s history. The concern now is the legality of a “broken silence” of several service members to enter into the political fray or to capitalize on book sales whether or not anyone’s main intention might be to tell the story from a firsthand perspective.

          Products and nations can improve, NOT by people letting flaws pass by and out the door, but by catching them and working to reduce them and improve on their “product”.

        • jimino

          Exactly!  He has continued pretty much everything his predecessor did, plus a few even they couldn’t get away with.  And it has NOT worked to improve things. 

          You are essentially arguing with yourself and apparently aren’t even aware of it.

    • Human898

      Shedding jobs to become more efficient, sending them to cheaper labor markets (foreign) to increase profit margins for the relative few, helps increase employment in America how?  

      How does one shed jobs in their nation, then whine about the jobless rate, people on food stamps and sluggish economy in their nation and expect someone think they are making sense?

      Increasing spending and decreasing revenue to pay for that spending decreases or increases the spending gap and size of debt?

      Do we want to put the same people who think the above makes sense back into the White House? What will the Wall Street Journal headline be 4 years from now based on the same policies that presented the September 18, 2008 (not yet 4 years ago) Wall Street Journal headline of “Worst Crisis since 30′s, no end yet in sight”?

  • TomK_in_Boston

    Etchasketch, the self-made man who pulled himself up from his bootstraps on the mean streets of Bloomfield Hills:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=bqvO1biXS38#!

    • modavations

      Empty Chair’s school in Hawaii costs 26,000 per annum

  • Brandstad

    US Debt is now Equal to and growing larger than the entire US Economy!  Not many countries have ever recovered from this!

    We seem to be following Japan, that used 11 federal stimulus programs to jump start their economy only to find themselves with a “lost” deccade and Debt equal to 200% of GDP!

    Why didn’t we follow Reagans example instead!

    • ulTRAX2

      And if BUSH paid down the debt as he promised instead of creating about 5 TRILLION in new debt… we might be able to better weather the disaster the right wing Clinton/Bush policies created.

    • ulTRAX2

      BTW, Reagan’s wonderful example led to the worst recession since the 1930′s. It started 6 months AFTER he took office. Peak unemployment hit 10.8% by 12-83… higher than under Obama. It was 8% or higher for about 28 months, and above 7% for FIVE YEARS yet Reagan didn’t have to deal with imploded banking, housing, or automotive sectors.

      Reagan promised 13 million new jobs by 1986 and the net increase was about 8.4… 1.5 millin FEWER than he claimed would be created by Carter’s policies.

      So since you support Reagan and Bush’s failed policies… I have to ask WHY DO YOU HATE AMERICA????

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    J O H N, jimino, please respond:

    Nassim Taleb: I am not a libertarian – but Ron Paul is the only candidate addressing fundamental issues facing the USA

    http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com/2012/03/nassim-taleb-i-am-not-libertarian-but.html

    • J__o__h__n

      What do you want me to respond to? 

      Ron Paul is not a candidate. 

  • hennorama

    The US economy has indeed recovered significantly from the Great Recession, albeit more slowly than in previous recoveries.  Why is this?

    Mainly because the Great Recession was a balance sheet recession, and so balance sheet repair has been the priority of the private sector, for both individuals and business.  This is economically prudent individually, but contributes enormously to the sluggish recovery as a whole.

    Individuals and businesses have primarily been paying down debt and adding to savings, rather than borrowing and spending.  When consumer spending is not robust, it’s natural for businesses to be cautious and not add to employment, since the underlying consumer demand is low.

    Eventually, the focus on paying down debt will end, and demand will recover.  But this is not a rapid process.

    The reality is that this process is unlikely to significantly speed up, regardless of who occupies the White House.

    One can see this focus on debt repayment in the stats.  Since 2008, mortgage debt is  DOWN 8.5% and revolving debt (credit cards, primarily) is DOWN 14.4%.  Overall total non-mortgage consumer debt is UP 1.1%, but this is entirely due to the massive increase in student loan debt.

    Unfortunately, student loan debt is going to be a further brake on the economy in the future.  As students graduate and begin repayment, these obligations crowd out their ability to borrow and/or pay for homes, cars, and other purchases.

    Even in the face of declining median income, the percentage of personal income needed to repay debts and other financial obligations has declined a great deal. This is due both to the focus on debt reduction, and lower interest rates.

    The Debt Service Ratio (mortgage and consumer debt divided by income) peaked during Q3 of 2007 at 14.08% and was down sharply to 10.98% in Q1 of 2012.  The Financial Obligations Ratio (which adds automobile lease payments, rental payments on tenant-occupied property, homeowners’ insurance, and property tax payments to the debt service ratio) also peaked in Q3 of 2007 at 18.97% and is also down sharply to 16.06% recently.

    Both of these ratios are the lowest in nearly 20 years, since Q4 of 1992. Again, good for individuals, but not great for the economy.

  • Dee

    Blame the Right, putting party before country every time 
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2012/05/13/paul-begala-dick-lugar-s-fate-shows-gop-puts-party-first.html 

    Republicans are blocking Obama’s Job Plan, Jeffrey Liebman 
    http://www.democraticunderground.com/101628328

    • Human898

      Wonders:  Is there a difference between unsubstantiated blame and substantiated blame since blame seems to be tossed in all directions?

  • Steve__T

    Moved my comments again, It seem it doesn’t matter how I sign in it happens only on reply’s

    • ulTRAX2

      Do you have more than one browser window open to this page?  

      • Steve__T

        Nope Do I need two?

  • modavations

    Una pregunta senores.Since when are tax cuts a waste.Who spends your money more effectively.The State,or you and the “Mrs.”Now giving tax cuts,without cutting spending is perverse.Let the Sequester take effect and let the Bush Taxes lapse.Take the entire amouanny State.I remind you,the interest payment on the debt this year alone is 457 billion.
          I think the last time we cut the budget was when Elvis was around.

    • Human898

      Apparently you missed the overwhelming “positive” effects the tax cuts (see the title of the actual laws) of 2001 ansd 2003 respectively and you’re just here to entertain us, not to complain about lacking economic recovery (recovery from what?) and lack of employment?

      • modavations

        9/11 was an immediate 200 billion hit to the economy and who knew when the next shoe would fall

        • Human898

          And September 2008 was what kind of hit to the economy?  Do you ever think?

    • modavations

      Should read….”take the entire amount and apply it to reducing the debt”

  • donniethebrasco

    I am offended that Michelle’s speech wasn’t signed or translated into Spanish.

    • Brandstad

      I am offended she didn’t speak it in spanish!

  • Brandstad

    Have you seen Obama’s new logo released last night?

  • J__o__h__n

    The AEI guy’s metaphor about the horse and the cart leaves out who built the road. 

    • modavations

      Our tax dollars built the roads

      • JGC

        Exactly.  Where are the tax dollars to build the future roads? 

  • ulTRAX2

    Some here claim fiscally irresponsible tax cuts create revenue booms… only someone spends it. Here’s a look at just Reagan/Clinton/Bush revenues in billions of $2005 constant dollars from Table 1.3 US Historical Budget Tables…  

    REAGAN:

    FY81  1,251.1  

    FY88  1,420.7   13.5% increase over 8 years including two large tax HIKES in 82 and 83.

    CLINTON:

    FY93  1,510.9

    FY00  2,309.2  52% increase in revenue over eight years

    BUSH:

    FY01  2,214.3

    FY08  2,288.1  a pathetic 3% increase over EIGHT YEARS and actually about a 1% decrease over Clinton’s last year.

    Anyone see any “revenue boom” after these trickle down, supply-side tax cuts? I’m sure the right wingers here will find some excuses to evade the simple truth that the ONLY net effect of tax cuts IS TO REDUCE REVENUE!

    • ulTRAX2

      As could be expected, no right winger wants to deal with REAL numbers. All I’ve seen is a complaint from a chronic reality denier that hard numbers are being used.

  • modavations

    I’ve been in business since 1988.My best years were 2004-2005.
    Furthermore I’m a Boston boy.When Pres.Romney was Governor I made a bundle,everyone made a bundle.There was a Help Wanted sign in every Store window.The unemployement rate was 4.6%.The schools became #1 in the country.

    • Human898

      So you like that health care insurance mandate??

      • modavations

        Starting Oct.1 old folks in Britain can sue if denied(rationed care) treatment.My health care is Private,I’ve had the same Dr. for 25 years.Nothings changed except price.I now pay Blue Cross $10,200.00 per annum,up 47% in three years.The Boston Globe said Emergency Room treatment hasn”t dropped an iota.The Shovel Ready jobs weren’t shovel ready and Affordable Health Care is anything but.

        • Human898

          As I said, you like that health insurance mandate?    Who backed it as governor of your state? Which party required such a thing (was for it before they were against it) as a provision in trade for their vote for passage of an affordable health care reform bill on the national level?

          You do realize what “shovel ready” means in the context it is used? Have you ever reviewed anything for an expenditure approval of taxpayers dollars? Have you ever subbmitted a grant application to any organization, private or government? Has your doctor cut their fee? Your health insurance never rose before 3 years ago? (we have to believe your word on your figures and the full context of the Boston Globe article), are you an honest sort? Could the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression have had anything to do with the increase in your insurance bill? People out of jobs not being able to afford insurance or medical bills?

          We keep hearing about rationed care in Great Britain from some Americans, but ask the Brits if they would trade their NHS for America’s prior to PPACA and for some strange reason they ask if you’re crazy.

          Here we never ration(ed) health care, we just require those who don’t have insurance to go to an emergency room to get care, (at the best rate possible, right?) put caps on their annual coverage or deny them coverage for pre-existing conditions. Can’t meet a co-pay, can’t pay out of pocket, can’t afford wildly expensive drugs? What happens here?

          • modavations

            I don’t like  requirements.I’m an adult and bristle at directives.Listen ,there are two types,Govt.guys and Free agents.Free Agents don’t need mandates and don’t need to have their noses wiped,by the Nanny State.What exactly are you asking me?
                    In Europe they like their Health Care,but on a salary of 100,000.00 you pay over 50% income tax(55% in Italy)plus a 20-23% VAT.I pay 28% Feds,6% to Mass. and 6% Sales Tax.

          • DrewInGeorgia

            I’m sorry but you lost me at “I’m an adult”.

    • JGC

      Are you implying that you are a Romney bundler? And, if so, is that for a 501(c)(3) or for a 501(c)(4)?

  • modavations

    Why do you guys carp on Bush.That’s ancient history.Why don’t you blame it on Hoover,or Grant,or Adams.Please guys,turn around,face the future.

    • Human898

      Less than 4 years ago and the worst crisis since the Great Depression is ancient history?   Is the sluggish recovery and unemployment from ancient history a concern of yours?

      • modavations

        This is not even close to the Great Depression.My Pops is 92, he laughs at the comparison.The Average Welfare family in Ma.gets 41,000.A poor person in the U.S. is considered part of the 1% in three fourths of the planet.

        • Joseph_Wisconsin

           
          Well for one reason it is impossible to
          discuss how the economy and deficits have fared over the last four
          years with out discussing the legacy of GW Bush; two very expensive
          wars to wind down, deficit busting tax cuts that Republicans have
          refused to undo, and a economy in shambles at the end of his
          presidency.

          There is also reason to discuss GW Bush
          and his policies looking  toward the future. Romney has bee very vague about
          what his economic plans really are, but what can be gleaned is that
          he proposes little different from those of GW Bush. Those did not
          work out so well, why should we expect different in repeating those?

          Other wise I agree I would like to
          forget GW Bush. He was a terrible president and the country would
          have been much better off if he had never been elected.

          • modavations

            The wars cost one trillion

  • modavations

    Please guys with these sonorous reams of figures.Give me a set of numbers and I’ll make them say anything you want.Sort of like the Global Warming guys at E.Anglia

  • ulTRAX2

    Romney’s claim that the unemployment rate in Mass was down to 4.6% is laughable. It only finally dropped to 4.6% in Jan 07… but Romney LEFT the office on Jan 4, 07. http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LASST25000003

    So ALL the other months Romney was in office, the unemployment rate WAS HIGHER!!

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      The dems claim that Romney tenure saw MA as 47th is laughable.  The truth is he entered office at 50th and exited at 28th in job creation.

      Like any good leader he improved the state of the economy.

      And I’ll take 4.7% any day of the week.  That is full employment.

      • ulTRAX2

        As could be expected you’re evading the issue I raised… the truthfulness of the 4.6% claim. I haven’t seen anyone present  credible sources for ANY stats Romney except what I presented. And from this one, I’d have to rate as barely true.

    • StilllHere

      cryptomuppet, ultratax, whatever the name, always so lame

  • notafeminista

    It was good to see the First Lady boosting the economy with her custom made dress.  The dress was gorgeous.  If only we all could afford custom goods direct from the designer.

    • Ray in VT

      I didn’t see it.  I guess that they haven’t said how much it might be “but very similar styles from Ms. Reese cost $395 to $450″ (NYT Fashion & Style by Eric Wilson).  He also pegged the cost of Ann Romney’s dress from the RNC at $1,990.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       That’s OK because she told us about Barack’s dumpster diving.  I guess she felt she had to outdo the Romney’s ironing board as the dining room table.

      Actually, she did a great job with her delivery.

      However, I felt it a little strange when she read the line about the measure of success isn’t about how much money you’ve earned.  I find this funny coming from someone who had a $350K no show job that was created through political connections and Barack’s $13M made through selling two autobiographical memoirs published before he was 40.  Again, there is no way he would have made that money without his political career.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      Don’t remember Nancy Reagan, do you?

      • Steve__T

         Yes She’s the one that came up with the republicans mantra to Obama “Just say NO”

  • modavations

    Pres.Romney started in 50th place and brought it down to 28th place.Unemployement went from 5.7 to 4.6%.The 4 yrs prior to Romneys stint ,Ma. had lost 70,000ish jobs.While Gov., Ma.  lost 40,000ish jobs.During the four years after Romney,Ma.lost 45,000ish jobs.Ma.schools moved to first place under Romney.Ma.is one of the costliest of states,that’s why companies flee.Ma.is a one party state.Romney used the veto 800 times and was overriden 700 times.
                Now listen, I’m from Boston.Everyone I knew got fat under Romney.Every store front had a Help Wanted Sign.
    SATs Romney 1600(a perfect score)
    SATs Hillary and Bush 1200
    SATs Gore and Kerry 1150-1125.
    SATs Pres.Obama 1020.

    Bain is a turn around specialist and had a 90% success rate.Most of the distressed clients solicited Bain,not the other way around.
    Were I the Pres.I would hire Bain to salvage my flagging reelection campaign.

  • modavations

    The least business friendly State is Vt.Vt.has the 11th highest tax burden.Vt.is the whiteist(caucasion)state.Vt.has the highest % of Govt.Employees.Why do you think Vermonters always post on NPR?Easy,they work for Govt.and govt.employees tend to be “Gold Bricks”.Just joking

    • JGC

      Why is Gov. Romney spending the week in Vermont right now?  A breath of fresh air, no doubt…

      • Ray in VT

        He’s probably still trying to get all of that ick from Tampa off.  I’ve never been there, but they were saying that it’s as humid as a mother there.

        It has been an interesting bit of news here.  For all of the campaigning that goes on over in New Hampshire, it’s rare that they ever cross the river.  He met with the GOP candidate for Governor, and he indicated that he might actually make a campaign stop here.

  • modavations

    Are You Ready For Some Football!!!!

  • hennorama

    OK, let’s talk about the reality of the Federal deficit.  We need to use 2011 figures, since fiscal 2012 is not yet complete.  Here’s what happened in 2011:  (apologies to those not interested in figures)

    Revenues 2.303 trillion
    Outlays    3.603 trillion

    Deficit      1.300 trillion   yep, that’s a lot

    Here’s how the spending broke down:

    Mandatory (non-discretionary) spending 2.027 trillion, including:

    Health care, Social Security, Income Security (unemployment comp.+EITC+CTC+nutrition assistance+SSI+other), Federal Military and Civilian retirement, Veterans, Other programs and Offsetting receipts (Medicare premiums+ pmts for Fed. employee retirement+natural resources income)

    Can’t cut anything here, so we need to look at the rest, OK?

    Interest                           230 billion can’t cut this either.

    OK, so we have mandatory spending and interest expense totaling 2.257 trillion.  This leaves us 46 billion of revenue left before we go into deficit spending.  Not much.

    OK, here are your choices:

    Discretionary spending 1.346 trillion

    Defense                           699 billion
    Non-defense                    647 billion, as follows:
    Education training employment and social services 116 billion
    transportation                                                   91 b
    income security                                                 71 b
    health                                                              63 b
    veterans benefits & services                                57 b
    administration of justice                                      54 b
    international affairs                                            48 b
    other (natural resources, environment science, space, technology, community and regional development, agriculture, admin. exps. for Soc. Sec.&Medic., energy, commerce and housing)   147 b

    Once you actually look at this stuff, you can see the choices are very tough.

    It immediately becomes obvious that spending cuts alone won’t do it, right?  I mean just the admin. costs for SS & Medicare are probably close to the 46 B left, and even though they are “discretionary,” you can’t cut them as a practical matter.

    And revenue increases alone won’t do the trick, either.  We need some combination of both to get anywhere close to balance.

    Economic growth and employment growth will help a great deal on the revenue side, and will also lead to lower spending for income security categories.  But we need more revenue than that, so income and other taxes need to go up.  The spending choices will be much more difficult, as you can see.

    • William

       You don’t have to raise taxes to gain revenue. Even Obama admitted to Charlie Gibson that raising taxes on cap. gains brings in less revenue.

      • hennorama

        I think that one could better argue this about capital gains tax rates - transactional timing has much more to do with any near-term increase/decrease in revenue from capital gains.  When a rate changes, whether up or down, it prompts those sitting on gains to either accelerate sales to avoid a higher rate, or delay sales to take advantage of a lower rate.

        Over time, revenue from capital gains more closely tracks the changes in stock markets.

        My main point however, is not about any specific tax rate, but that to get to balance in Federal revenue and outlays, we need BOTH revenue increases and spending cuts.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

        Keep beating that dead horse, bub.

  • Gregg Smith

    What’s with Michelle trying to make her husband out to be destitute in their youth? They had it made. I think it’s similar to the “you didn’t build that” mindset.  She was sending the message, dumpster diving is nothing to be ashamed of. It’s the same as her husband sending the message that you’ve worked hard and deserve stuff even if you haven’t and don’t. It’s all about making people feel good about their inadequacies. That is not inspiring and I believe it’s insulting.

    It goes farther. People actually believe welfare is stimulative. Nancy Pelosi said unemployment benefits were stimulative. They are telling struggling folks they are victims but all will be fine if we spread the wealth around. The poor are poor because of the rich and the rich are just lucky. You deserve what they have worked for. Here ya’ go. And don’t pay down debt or save, go buy something for yourself. Stimulate. As if.

    It’s so destructively silly. 

    • JGC

      I think that if you come from a youth in a lower middle class family, or a poor family, even if you jump the numerous hoops to land in the Valhalla of Ivy League Schools, you cannot fathom your future entrée, your incredible presence, your beyond-modest past and here you are now – now! – in the majors, and you should feel as to the manor born?  Maybe you always have one foot in the past, as if, how did I get here? 

      I still get a tremendous kick out of going to a flea market and getting a bargain…Sitting at a table with my son at our town’s annual garage sale and watching him negotiate the price of his Disney DVD’s with a customer…And if I see an old chair by the side of the road, I can’t wait to get a good look at it and see if it can fit in my home.  And I know you feel the same way, so why do you take the line that we folks who like trading and bargains and “finds” should feel like we are inadequate and not deserving and not inspiring and are insulting true Americans who spend their money on things imported from China? 

    • J__o__h__n

      They should have gotten a loan from their parents or spent some of their trust fund.

  • Gregg Smith

    So I’m sitting in my johnboat in the middle of the secret back yard lake here in rural NC and I get buzzed by a lear jet. I’m thinking it was Clinton heading to the show.

  • Gregg Smith

    Sandra Fluke makes me puke. She’s a liar and opportunist. Her speech is all out wrong on every level.

    • Mouse_2012

      that’s sick. 

      • Gregg Smith

        That’s original.

    • JGC

      Sandra Fluke is an American She-ro.

  • Gregg Smith

    Has there ever been a more meaningless phrase than “Fair share”?

    • JGC

      “trickle down” 

  • JGC

    Clinton is praising the cooperative initiatives that he was able to join with President GW Bush. Obama is committed to constructive cooperation, too. 

    • Gregg Smith

      It sounds like platitudes to me. Obama is no Clinton. 

      • JGC

        Clinton praised the initiatives made jointly with Bush, which is more than the Republican Party could manage, to even barely whisper the name of George W. Bush during their convention. They all love Jeb (today!), but for some reason they try to forget about George W. and George Herbert Walker.

        • Gregg Smith

          I agree about Clinton but as I said, Obama is no Clinton. Clinton listened to the will of the people in 1994, worked with Republicans and made progress. In 2010 Obama got his 1994 in even more dramatic fashion. He didn’t care and doubled down. I see a big difference between the two.

          • JGC

            There was no one to negotiate with. The Grand Bargain attempted with John Boehner went nowhere once the Young Guns got wind of it. They negotiate with no one.  No one. 

    • JGC

      P.S. Can somebody pass me a cup of the Kool-Aid?

  • Gregg Smith

    Clinton really should quit wagging his finger. It’ creepily reminiscent. How long has he been talking? I’m sleepy.

    • JGC

      It is getting late.  Gregg, ,modavations, notaFeminista, William, Brandstad, WorriedfortheCountry and others, you are feeling very sleepy.  Veeerrry sleeeeepy. You are breathing in, out, in, out, feeling sleepy. You are floating in a happy place and feeling contented.(Breathe…) You will now fall into a deep sleep, and when you wake up tomorrow morning, you will feel refreshed and vote a straight Democratic ticket in November.  Hush. Breathe. Now, when you next open your eyes, you will feel at peace with the world, you will vote for Obama and your local Democratic representatives and have no memory of this post and of this night, except for a vague contented Clintonesque feeling. Vote Obama/Biden 2012… (gentle sounds of  waves washing over the beach…)  SNAP!  

      • WorriedfortheCountry

         LOL!

        I’ll give Clinton one thing.  I’m so tired that I don’t think I’ll have energy to stay up for Obama tomorrow.

        • JGC

          Aaahh…so Hillary’s and my plan worked…(Vote Obama/Biden 2012 and Hillary/Bill 2016)…ssshhhhh…when you next come into full consciousness, it will be January 2017 and you will say, “What the…?!”

      • William

         Did you feel the pain when Obama hugged Clinton. The guy that said Obama would be bringing him coffee or carrying his bags a few years ago? How did you like that? It was a teachable moment huh?

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       He had the identical finger wag with his famous rebuke to the press: “I did not have sexual relations with that woman — Ms. Lewinsky”.

      Clinton has a gift for snake oil and the finger wag is his tell.

  • JGC

    Obama hugs Clinton. All is forgiven.

  • Mouse_2012

    Wow Clinton was pretty darn good.  Good thing Republican are no longer going to rely on “Fact Checkers” anymore since they all but denounce them against Clinton 

  • hennorama

    One word – arithmetic.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

       Arithmetic == $5.4T in new Obama debt without a budget.

      Obama punted on Simpson-Bowles.

      • JGC

        He had a little help from Paul Ryan, who would like to leave the impression that he was behind a Grand Bargain like Simpson-Bowles; but in fact put the brakes on it as soon as was realized there had to be a compromise on taxes.

      • jimino

        Name just one Republican who advocated raising taxes in accord with SB’s recommendations.  Just one out of the hundreds in Congress.

        • Gregg Smith

          Judd Gregg, Mike Crapo and Tom Coburn for starters. It’s not that S/B was perfect or even very good. It was a plan that offered a solution. If Obama wanted to make a big show and spend time and money for nothing then he should have at least had a alternative plan. 

          • J__o__h__n

            Judd Gregg retired. 

      • hennorama

        Yes, the figure you cite is indeed correct if one attributes all of the deficit in 2009 to Pres. Obama’s policies, which is disingenuous.

        We can argue indefinitely about these numbers, but let’s agree that the economic problem Pres. Obama has been dealing with started before he was even elected or inaugurated.

        There’s plenty of blame to go around when discussing the deficit and the Great Recession, but it would be helpful to at least agree that history did not begin on Jan. 20, 2009.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Clinton finished just in time for the final play of the Giants-Cowboys game.

    Sorry Bill, no one was watching.
     

    • DrewInGeorgia

      Because everyone who is not you is no one, right? I think there’s probably a couple hundred million Americans who hold a different opinion. Of course their opinions don’t matter, do they?

      Worried for the Country? Obviously not.

  • Steve__T

    I’m getting tired of disqus.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    I’m not talking about socially responsible capitalism. I’m talking about setting up the clear rules to the game, via legislation through our Representatives, whom we should hold VERY accountable from a grass roots level, to be actually doing what we expect. And that is establishing a clear framework of law to protect our liberties, which includes protection from theft, bodily harm, corruption and collusion.  We must insist these clear rules that are NOT DISCRETIONARILY BENT OR IGNORED OR CORRUPTLY LOOPHOLED FOR SOME, are vigorously enforced with meaningful, consequential Punishments.

    I don’t believe in micro-engineering a “socially responsible capitalism”. Markets will determine prices, with supply and demand and real competition.

    If basic rules against collusion, corruption, direct harm are broken in the market, people should be punished. (See Bill Black, and lament fact that essentially 0 prosecutions have been brought under Obama administration; of course how could he prosecute the pals of Geithner, Summers, Bernanke, etc.)

    http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com/2011/10/bill-black-interviewed-on-democracy-now.html

    Markets, supply and demand, within the basic rules, along with sound money (look it up), will let the market operate organically and effieciently. Suppy and Demand  should drive the economy, not behind the scenes manipulation of the economy by monetary policy bubble economics via Central Bankers and Executive Appointed Financial Technocrats, which is EXACTLY WHAT FUELED OUR CRISIS, WITH THE PRIVATE MARKET PLAYERS SIMPLY OPERATING WITHIN THE FUNNY MONEY GIVEN TO THEM BY THE FED, AND THE CORRUPTED REGULATORY STRUCTURE CREATED BY DECADES OF REVOLVING DOOR WASHINGTON/WALL ST  NONSENSE.

    What I have described is vastly different than the reality of our recent history.

    Using Rule of Law as I described is not the “lawless, or less-regulation” canard you like to place on me, it is in fact stronger regulation with regard to the worst and most corrupting elements of our economy/society.

    The mistake you make is thinking that Rule of Law, such as that, is further equivalent to an Activist Government in General, not just protecting our liberties, but CHOOSING OUR DIRECTIONS be the personal or economic based on some well-intentioned notions that elites have of the “best” way that we should live.

    That type of interventionist government, that participates in deciding our ENDS, instead of us driving it organically by the totality of our collective actions, instead of simply protecting our MEANS of making relatively free choices and value judgements, is a whole different beast.

    • Human898

      What you’re talking about is what we have, yet it doesn’t work, you’ve been arguing against yourself your entire time here. Because you refuse to answer things like how your “grass roots” “accountability” is going to work differently than our system works now you make little sense.  It’s very nice you have an imagination about your ideal world, but you fail to convince anyone of how it is going to work in reality because you somehow believe the system and the people you bash are suddenly going to be different under your fantasy.

      The system we have can work very well, although people don’t like the struggle it constantly presents because of its designed capacity for checks and balances to power. You and a few others have dominated this comment board with your insistence the world be how you want it to be, apparently unaware or inconsiderate that every person in the world has their vision of how the world should be and how to run it. The problem is, they all conflict in both minor and major ways. You have also ignored direct questions about what you are here pushing. That does not offer evidence that you can close the cracks in your ideals. If you would like to convince people of your vision, pushing other people off a commentary board with insistances everyone believe you have all the answers is perhaps not the way to convince anyone you have something worth considering.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        “What you’re talking about is what we have, yet it doesn’t work, you’ve been arguing against yourself your entire time here.”

        “..is what we have”?!?

        Is that a sick joke or are you really that uninformed or deluded?

        That’s a cute way to try and dismiss me with one fell swoop, but you are being intellectually dishonest to suggest that the more Ron Paul-esque, Sound Money, more libertarian, less cooperation/collusion between big money and big government, including prosecuting financial crooks and firing financial wizards “is what we have”.

        If you do not comprehend what I have been trying to say about the lack of accountability, the tilt toward more arbitrary technocratic discretion as opposed to Classical Rule of law, then that is your loss.

        Maybe I am poor at explaining, but the myriad links do a fine job of explaining this kind of analysis of the status quo, to anyone interested and open minded enough to incorporate it into their political/economic thinking.

        The onus is clearly on you, and the others who summarily dismiss with “cult” comments or ad hominems, to demonstrate:

        1) You understand the points I am trying to bring up, the rationale of what I, those sites etc are saying. Not your caricatured summary of what you think a good modern liberal should reactionarily think about such things, but a rational, mechanistic understanding.

        2) That such a vision is “what we have”.

        What we have.  Last I checked, people were complaining around here that Ron Paul etc is irrelevant now that the primaries are over.

        We already have a political/economic reality that Ron Paul, Bill Black, Glenn Greenwald and Ralph Nader would call, maybe not perfect to their vision, but pretty darn good?

        I think they call that a cold day in hell.

        How about those 0 prosecutions from the Obama team? Verrry progressive.

        If you were serious you would consider and respond to what Nassim Taleb was saying:

        http://www.capitalismwithoutfailure.com/2012/03/nassim-taleb-i-am-not-libertarian-but.html

        …and then explain why we should be voting for the DNC.

        The rot is in the highest levels of elite power, precisely because they have the power (power corrupts, grandma was right).

        The only effective tool against this is a dispassionate, blind, Rule of Law and respect for Liberty, which must be protected from such tyranny.

        You do not agree that we have tyranny from the Financial Class and their elected lackey’s? Oh, only the evil Republican ones….

        And YOUR solutions? We don’t know.  4 more years? More Centralized Power to “do the right thing” by micromanaging the economy? We can prosecute crimes without playing Master Planner as I posted before, which you ignored.

  • Human898

    What’s to address? Nassim Taleb is one person, a former hedge fund manager and trader.  Who do you think wants to get rid of the FED more than the people on Wall Street?  Who do you think wants less FED regulation and oversight than Wall Street?  The FED is aready required to face a number of annual audits.   Once again you, Mr. Paul and others argue against yourselves.   Few people would argue there is corruption found in every corner, that means that Mr. Paul and Mr. Taleb could conceivably be as corrupt as any of us or those who have proven to be corrupt.   Con artists aren’t going to walk up to you and tell you they’re here to con you out of all your money, they’re going to say “trust me”.  I agree with some things Paul says, I agree with some things Taleb says, I agree with some things Romney says, I agree with things Mr. Obama says, but they are all as human as any of us and like all of us, they have their vision of how the world should be.  People who are not naive or uninformed realize that since the dawn of time, there have been people talking of doom and gloom for purposes of their own agendas while others take different tacts for their agendas. 
     
    If Mr. Paul was sincere and confident about his positions, why was he running as a Republican?   Like John McCain’s “Maverick” status, how does one bash the policies of the people they expect to help them gain election?  Libertarianism talks a lot about a return to some fantasy world of angelic citizenry that is totally responsible, honest, respectful and cooperative and need no rules and regulations because they never break any(if all people obeyed and respected the rule of law, there would be no need for being ruled by law).   Wouldn’t we all love to live in such a world. 

    Libertarianism can’t quite explain the obvious missing parts of their proposed philosophy.   How can one propose a reduced law society while proposing people live by the rule of law at the same time?  Once again if all people were personally responsible, why a need for laws to rule them? While there are arbitrary and archaic laws that exist, there also exists a means to remove them IF there is a desire and support for doing so.  Most laws evolve, not as the result of someone hired in some back room coming up with laws that have no connection to anything.  Laws and regulation generally stem from a lack of personal responsibility, lack of mutual respect and lack of consideration for one another amongst different individuals and groups.  In other words, when some people do things like crash the world’s economy with their risky get-rich-quick schemes, they draw upon that behavior, regulations intended to try to prevent repeats.  By what you have said, you agree.  You want to dismantle the FED, yet who’s going to do that?  Ron Paul, Nassim Taleb, you?   How?

    The informed and not naive would know that we have a government with three branches and regulation does not simply come from a dictate handed down by a dictator or monarch, but comes from a process.  That process is intended and the divisions of govermemnt are intended to be checks and balances to one another and to such things as monarchies and dictatorships.   You, Mr. Paul and Mr. Taleb attack the way things are and offer dire warnings, but you fail to present how you propose to reduce government without making use of government to do so and in many ways you appear to suggest to only exchange a form of government, rules and regulations for another form of government you’ve yet to describe, other than less government, but less government that fits your unspecified (aside from what’s not working, what’s corrupt. As if if no one else recognizes it) plan for what replaces what is in place.  

    Most people, but for the corrupt, have few or no problems with going after corruption and the corrupt without flushing the baby down the drain with the bathwater.  Corruption is everywhere, it has been everywhere, it waxes and wanes everywhere and it needs to be fought, but how do you fight it when asking people to be not just personally responsible, but responsible to the greater good and their society or human society?  

    Religion, govermment, etc. have been trying to teach the benefits of humans being considerate fair, honest and virtuous in all other ways to their fellow human beings.  Because enough people do not recognize the benefit of that and want the top advantage over others, regulations in the interest of the greater good are instituted not to the pleasure of most people who are mostly considerate and respectful of their fellow human beings, but to the recognized necessity.   Are all things vulnerable to corruption, yes. Should the rule of law be tossed out because some enforcing the rule of law are corrupt?  No.   Should America be dismantled because some Americans are corrupt?  One of the big problems I see is that we have broken down all things in general terms and in many cases not thought through longer term impacts and affects of the “cures” some think should be implemented.    Sitting down at the table and working through the problems, discussing and debating the pluses and minuses and then coming up with the best solutions as compromises on a number of different factors as the founders of this nation did, could be the crux of solving our root problems.

  • Regular_Listener

    I love the idea of the “fiscal cliff”.  What a wonderful creation!  This will give Washington politicians the opportunity to make some tough decisions without accepting any responsibility for them, and then allowing them to attack the whole thing later and claim that none of it was their doing.  I don’t see any of them passing up this great opportunity.  We are going over that cliff.

ONPOINT
TODAY
Sep 2, 2014
U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., talks with Mark Wilson, event political speaker chairperson, with his wife Elain Chao, former U.S. Secretary of Labor, at the annual Fancy Farm Picnic in Fancy Farm, Ky., Saturday, August 4, 2012. (AP)

Nine weeks counting now to the midterm elections. We’ll look at the key races and the stakes.

Sep 2, 2014
Confederate spymaster Rose O'Neal Greenhow, pictured with her daughter "Little" Rose in Washington, D.C.'s Old Capitol Prison in 1862. (Wikimedia / Creative Commons)

True stories of daring women during the Civil War. Best-selling author Karen Abbott shares their exploits in a new book: “Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy.”

RECENT
SHOWS
Sep 1, 2014
Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker Jarvis Jones (95) recovers a fumble by Carolina Panthers quarterback Derek Anderson (3) in the second quarter of the NFL preseason football game on Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014 in Pittsburgh. (AP)

One outspoken fan’s reluctant manifesto against football, and the big push to reform the game.

 
Sep 1, 2014
This Friday, Aug. 22, 2014 photo shows a mural in in the Pullman neighborhood of Chicago dedicated to the history of the Pullman railcar company and the significance for its place in revolutionizing the railroad industry and its contributions to the African-American labor movement. (AP)

On Labor Day, we’ll check in on the American labor force, with labor activist Van Jones, and more.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: August 29, 2014
Friday, Aug 29, 2014

On hypothetical questions, Beyoncé and the unending flow of social media.

More »
Comment
 
Drew Bledsoe Is Scoring Touchdowns (In The Vineyards)
Thursday, Aug 28, 2014

Football great — and vineyard owner — Drew Bledsoe talks wine, onions and the weird way they intersect sometimes in Walla Walla, Washington.

More »
Comment
 
Poutine Whoppers? Why Burger King Is Bailing Out For Canada
Tuesday, Aug 26, 2014

Why is Burger King buying a Canadian coffee and doughnut chain? (We’ll give you a hint: tax rates).

More »
1 Comment