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Debt Problems revisited

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Bob K
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0 posted 07-29-2011 08:38 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


     I thought this article and discussion from Time Magazine was interesting.  It suggests that the debt situation we're in now isn't so bad.  I don't agree with it, but it makes some interesting points and the discussion has some good back and forth to it.

     It also talks about who's responsible for the current debt problems, which is always good for a few go-arounds.  People on both sides make interesting points  The Democrats are right of course, but everybody knew that already, right?

http://moneyland.time.com/2011/07/15/the-u-s-is-not-drowning-in-debt/


     I'm up for whatever people want to say about this.  It's an interesting give and take, and the folks on the site at Time make things sound so civilized they've got to be computers.
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1 posted 07-29-2011 11:03 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

both parties appear to accept the logic that the United States is suffering from an unacceptably high level of government debt and that further debt will doom the U.S. to generations of decline. Judging by polling data, large swaths of the country agree. Nonetheless, that consensus is wrong.

The Republicans have generally been most vocal on this score.


Interesting...and basically laughable. Obviously the writer is not familiar with   Pelosi comments, like...

“What we’re trying to do is save the world from the Republican budget. We’re trying to save life on this planet as we know it today.”

Nor must be the writer familiar with Obama's warning that seniors may not receive their checks or medicare. No, just print something from Cantor and ignore the doomsday predictions from the democrats. Why is that not surprising?
Yet even President Obama believes further debt is untenable and has pledged to cut spending by trillions of dollars in the coming years.

Yes, pledged but not mantioned how. Daily he had been asked publicly by Republicans, "Where is your plan? SHow us your plan". Obama has submitted no plan at all. He simply rejects any plan which would curb his insatiable spending habits.


I’m not saying that the money we’ve borrowed recently has been well spent. One could persuasively argue that the government has done a terrible job of using debt to spur economic activity.

Congratulations. An honest opinion....remarkable for Time.

But the numbers aren’t debatable and indicate that by historical standards there is no debt emergency except for the one we are making.

Will someone please mention that to Obama, Pelosi, Reid and Biden (the missing man who was put in charge of straightening out the budget but has somehow disappeared from the scene).

Our diminishing competitiveness and ability to invest in the future – those are real crises, and ones that the debt ceiling debate will do nothing to solve.

Fine. Then let's work on those. Why is our competitiveness diminishing under Obama? Why are we not investing in the future under Obama?

Bob K
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2 posted 07-30-2011 02:44 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



quote:



Our diminishing competitiveness and ability to invest in the future – those are real crises, and ones that the debt ceiling debate will do nothing to solve.

Fine. Then let's work on those. Why is our competitiveness diminishing under Obama? Why are we not investing in the future under Obama?



     Thanks for responding, Mike.

     I think the answer to your question is that the two parties have very different answers about where the future lies and what the best investments would be to help us get to the futures that will be most productive.  The Republicans seem to feel and please correct me on this; I'm trying to characterize the Republican viewpoint here, not score points that minimal governmental action and minimal governmental interference with the economy are the royal road to the future.  The Democrats feel that the government has obligations to keep the economy pretty much on track, to keep it from the largest swings in the business cycles, and to make sure that the public is protected against the worst excesses of those that would exploit them for economic gain to the detriment of the society overall.

     The two parties are in a pretty much constant and ongoing struggle as to what the future should be, and how the nature of progress should be defined.  

     I suspect that your willingness to support President Obama's investments in the future would (probably) only go as far as they agreed with your view of what would be the right future for the country.  Otherwise, you simply wouldn't be true to yourself and your own ideals.  My notions of investments in the future would probably be at odds with yours in many respects for the same reasons.  I see cutting back on pollution and being more precise and less tolerant about many polution standards as progress.  The last Republican administration loosened them.

     Again, that was their idea of progress and the future.  It was a natural step for them to take given that they felt that way, but it wouldn't get my support, though I understood and still understand where it was coming from in their context.

     I simply disagree with the context.

     I'll try to address some of the other stuff you were talking about, but I did want to get back to you quickly with at least a partial comment.  I also want to allow room for other folks to comment, and to allow room for comment on this latest round of chicken the two parties are playing with each other, the US credit rating, US interest rates and the world economy in general.  I heard today some of comments about President Obama invoking use of the 14th ammendment in the debt extention isn't passed.

     Exactly what that would mean, I don't know for sure, but I can confidently assume it would be wildly unpopular with the Republicans, even if it did present both sides with the solution to a problem neither side seemed willing to take responsibility for negotiating an end to that the other side was willing to deal with.  I can hardly wait for the tide of self-righteousness to flow down upon us all from every direction.

     Personally, I favor picking somebody safely dead and blaming him.  I don't say "him or her" because this is one situation where I suspect the women in the country would be thrilled to stay out of it.  Pick a dead guy and blame him.  My suggestion is Warren G. Harding, because everybody agrees he was an affable buffoon, pretty much, and that he probably couldn't have anything to do with it at all.  It may not be too late to Impeach Warren G. Harding retroactively.

     For those who don't get my sense of humor, that was actually a joke, palatable as a lead stuffed dumpling.  Enjoy.

     Comments and/or other bad jokes are encouraged.
Uncas
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3 posted 07-30-2011 06:39 AM       View Profile for Uncas   Email Uncas   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Uncas

quote:
Daily he had been asked publicly by Republicans, "Where is your plan? SHow us your plan". Obama has submitted no plan at all. He simply rejects any plan which would curb his insatiable spending habits.


As you know I'm not American and not completely familiar with the nuances of your political system, though I have tried to research it wherever possible so that I can participate, at least in a small way, in the frequent political debates and discussions. I'm a little confused though with some of the things I read, take the statement above for example.

As I understood it Congress is the body that controls spending, the President proposes a budget that's debated and amended by the House and Senate before being passed back to the President. All mandatory spending prescribed by an act or law require no additional authorisation however an appropriations bill is required to allocate funds for discretionary spending. So if Congress controls and authorises spending why does he president get the blame for his 'insatiable spending habits'?

Also, why are some Republicans asking to see the President's plan for raising the debt ceiling? I was under the impression that the responsibility  in that regard belonged to Congress - the President can't even present a bill, only a member of Congress can do that - or have I got that wrong?

Can somebody please explain?

.
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4 posted 07-30-2011 08:57 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

So if Congress controls and authorizes spending why does he president get the blame for his 'insatiable spending habits'?

...because those insatiable spending habits were conducted at a time that Democrats controlled both houses of Congress. They passed his spending plans without even reading them and gave him carte blanche to do as he wished. They didn't submit a budget for over two years, apparently not to have him tied down to one.


Also, why are some Republicans asking to see the President's plan for raising the debt ceiling? I was under the impression that the responsibility  in that regard belonged to Congress - the President can't even present a bill, only a member of Congress can do that - or have I got that wrong?

No, the president doesn't present a bill but he can present a plan. He certainly submitted a stimulus plan, a cap and trade plan and a health care plan, among others. He is demanding to see a republican plan which will coincide with what he wants done but he presents no plan to indicate what he wants it to be. He has not been shy in presenting plans up to this point. Why are they asking to see his plan for raising the debt ceiling? They are not. They are asking to see his plan for curbing spending. Obama states that spending should be cut back but gives no indication what he would do to make that happen. Apparently he does not want to put anything in writing or on the record which would bind him to specifics, in much the same way the illegality of not passing a budget for over two years has occurred. Reid has come up with some cockamamey plan for curbing spending which is based on savings from spending less money in Iraq and Afghanistan (and not getting involved in a war anywhere else!) but nothing on cutting domestic spending at all.

That is basically Obama's outrage and temper tantrum. He's had a great couple of years, sending out spending plans to a democratic congress who simply rubber-stamped whatever he wanted done. Now that he can't do that anymore, he blames republicans and tea-partyers for taking that away from him and screams that everything is the republican's fault.

I assume that they feel if they scream about the republicans loudly enough, they can make the public not dwell on the fact that HE and THEY spent the money, he and they raised our debt to unseen heights and he and they created such uncertainty in the private sector that the unemployment rate has risen significantly under  his watch. Guess what? I don't think it's working that good any more....which creates more temper tantrums and causes him to appeal to the American people for help, those same people he completely ignored when passing the stimulus and Obamacare.
Uncas
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5 posted 07-30-2011 09:47 AM       View Profile for Uncas   Email Uncas   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Uncas


quote:
because those insatiable spending habits were conducted at a time that Democrats controlled both houses of Congress. They passed his spending bills without even reading them and gave him carte blanche to do as he wished. They didn't submit a budget for over two years, apparently not to have him tied down to one.


But that simply isn't true Mike.

The 2011 budget was presented, on time, by Obama in February 2010 and was passed by Congress in April 2011 when the Republicans controlled the House.

Obama has also presented a 'plan' with regard to future spending, it's called the 2012 budget which Obama presented, on time, on February 14, 2011. It'll be debated, amended and voted on by both houses before being passed back to the President.

Raising the debt ceiling is another thing entirely and is the responsibility of Congress. Normally it's just a clean vote and a formality - either the US pays the bills for expenditure already made that Congress authorized or it defaults on its debts. Unfortunately this time around  the Republicans voted against that and decided to tie paying the incurred bills to future spending cuts which created the fiasco that's now unfolding.

Obama, instead of insisting that the two issues were dealt with separately decided to give the Republicans what they wanted and conceded to almost all their demands. The Republicans then managed to drag defeat from the jaws of victory by demanding even more under pressure from the tea party faction.

Unfortunately while all this political Kabuki is being played out the damage to the US credit worthiness has mounted - at this point in time I don't see any way that the US can avoid a downgrade  in its credit rating. That will equate to hike in the cost of living for every American, not to mention killing off any chance of a recovery or growth.

Given that the US probably can't avoid a downgrade I think the Republicans should go the whole hog and block the debt ceiling rise. No I haven't gone insane, there are logical reasons that make that, at this point, a viable option both politically and economically.

.
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6 posted 07-30-2011 09:56 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

  I suspect that your willingness to support President Obama's investments in the future would (probably) only go as far as they agreed with your view of what would be the right future for the country.  Otherwise, you simply wouldn't be true to yourself and your own ideals.  My notions of investments in the future would probably be at odds with yours in many respects for the same reasons.  I see cutting back on pollution and being more precise and less tolerant about many polution standards as progress.  The last Republican administration loosened them.

Yes, Bob, you are right there. Democrats and Republicans  have always had that difference of government control in the country's dealings. Democrats want more of it and Republicans want less. Even when Obama had the audacity to say in his campaign that he didn't want bigger government at all, in repsonse to republican claims that he did, everyone knew that was pure rhetoric....and it certainly turns out that it was, doesn't it?

I see cutting back on pollution and being more precise and less tolerant about many polution standards as progress.

Bob, I have no problem with cutting back on pollution at all. I DO have a problem when it is mis-characterized for political purposes and exercising more power over businesses. One of the best examples I can recall is the oil-drilling plans in Alaska. Environmentalists ran ads showing seals and wildlife frolicking in the snow, having a wonderful time and then here comes the dirty oil rigs, polluting the land and killing off the lovable creatures. 60 Minutes sent a team up to Alaska to the site where oil drilling had begun and which was the area in question and guess what? It was an isolated area completely devoid of wildlife which showed no signs of pollution at all. The area was still pristine, even with the presence of oil rigs. They went through the plants and building, showed all of the environmental controls in place, showed the steps taken to insure pollution was not being  done, and presented a very good case for their part. The public got to see the ads from the environmentalists. They didn't see the video from 60 Minutes, unless they happened to catch it the one time the show broadcast it.

Right now we have the situation of the coal mines in Birmingham, Alabama, another great example.

During a recent public hearing in Birmingham called to consider whether to place a coal mine near a river that serves as a source of drinking water for parts of the Birmingham metro area Bryant heard accusations by an overflowing crowd that businesses in the area were polluting the drinking water and causing cancer.

Though both state environmental officials and mine operators asserted that the mine would not pose a threat to the drinking water, environmentalists contended that it would.


Hear that, Bob? State environmental officials and mine operators asserted the mines would not pose a threat but environmentalists asserted it would. They could care less about actual facts or anything that could rob them of power.

Ronnie Bryant was the coal mine owner.

[Bryant] listened to close to two hours of people trashing companies of all types and blaming pollution for random cases of cancer in their families. Several speakers clearly believe that all of the cancer and other deaths they see in their families and communities must be caused by pollution. Why? Who knows? Maybe just because it makes for an emotional story to blame big bad business. Its hard to say.

After two hours, Bryant approached the microphone and made this announcement:

Nearly every day without fail men stream to these [mining] operations looking for work in Walker County. They cant pay their mortgage. They cant pay their car note. They cant feed their families. They dont have health insurance. And as I stand here today, I just you know whats the use?

I got a permit to open up an underground coal mine that would employ probably 125 people. Theyd be paid wages from $50,000 to $150,000 a year. We would consume probably $50 million to $60 million in consumables a year, putting more men to work.

And my only idea today is to go home. Whats the use? I see these guys I see them with tears in their eyes looking for work. And if theres so much opposition to these guys making a living, I feel like theres no need in me putting out the effort to provide work for them. So ... basically what Ive decided is not to open the mine. Im just quitting. Thank you.
http://www.thenewamerican.com/tech-mainmenu- 30/environment/8357-environmentalists-halt-plans-for-new-coal-mine-near-birmingham-ala

Actually, this was Obama  simply living up to his promise. He stated in his campaign that anyone attempting to open coal mines would face so many environmental blockades that they would go bankrupt. Is this the kind of pollution control you favor, Bob? When you think of industrialists, do you see a caracature of an evil miser, rolling in money, as the pollution from is factories cover the world with deadly pollutants? Do you see the environmentalists as knights on white horses saving the planet, instead of being the power-hungry, money-grabbing, self-serving locos that they are? I contend that there should be a balance. There SHOULD be environmental watchdogs, who are sincerely concerned about pollution and the planet. We don't have that. Take this coal mine case as an example. State environmental officials declare there is no threat.....end of case. That's what should happen. Didn't, though, did it? The environmentalist crusades bear a striking resemblance to the Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpeton crusades, and  are done with the same goals in mind.


I heard today some of comments about President Obama invoking use of the 14th ammendment in the debt extention isn't passed.

     Exactly what that would mean, I don't know for sure, but I can confidently assume it would be wildly unpopular with the Republicans, even if it did present both sides with the solution to a problem neither side seemed willing to take responsibility for negotiating an end to that the other side was willing to deal with.  I can hardly wait for the tide of self-righteousness to flow down upon us all from every direction.


Unpopular with the republicans? I think it would be unpopular with everyone who believes in the constitution and, if presented, democrats would present it with their heads down and eyes looking away in shame. Every legal scholar I've read lately declares the unconstitutionality of attempting it. Actually, it does not surprise me. Obama has shown that following the constitution is not one of his priorities. He also has declared he will not go that route, which almost certainly means that he will. I don't think he would get away with this one.

Personally, I favor picking somebody safely dead and blaming him.

I agree! How about joe Biden?? What's that? He's not dead?? Coulda fooled me. Sheriff Joe  was put in charge of cleaning up this debt ceiling mess a couple of months ago but I haven't seen his name since then. I figgered he bought the farm or kicked the proverbial bucket. He must just be in hiding somewhere,,,,
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7 posted 07-30-2011 10:13 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer


Today marks the 800th day since the Senate Democrats passed a budget. For more than two years, democrats have ignored their legal obligation to pass a budget, while we've seen federal spending spiral out of control. Considering democrats have controlled the White House and the Senate for more than two years, with total democrat control between 2008 and 2010 in the House, Senate and White House, the failure lies with President Obama and democrat congressional leadership.
http://townhall.com/tipsheet/katiepavlich/2011/07/08/celebration_its_day_800_since_senate_dems_passed_a_budget

The House Budget Committee on Thursday released a report demonstrating that economic hardships have been made worse by Washingtons misguided interventions and the lack of a credible plan to lift the crushing debt burden."
senate

The report, Debt Overhang and the U.S. Jobs Malaise comes at a timely moment: it has now been 800 days since the Senate has passed a budget.

Its really incredible said Rep. Todd Young, R-Ind., a member of the House Budget Committee, Democrats dont get it. They either have trouble figuring out their priorities or they dont want to reveal them to the American public.  Instead we just get criticism for our plan, which is the only comprehensive plan out there.

Young cited the Path to Prosperity, the House Budget Committees Fiscal Year 2012 Budget Resolution, which passed in the House of Representatives back in April.

Maybe I havent been in Washington long enough, Young said, but it just makes sense to me that if the other side put out a plan, we could compare them and make our arguments to the people. But its hard to see how you come to an agreement when the other side wont put forth their own views. The President and Democrats in Congress need to articulate to the American people what they stand for rather than perpetuating economic uncertainty by refusing to embrace specific, workable solutions.
http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/just-reminder-its-been-800-days-senate-passed-budget_576441.html

While the House has passed a serious, credible budget that tackles this debt crisis head-on, 800 days and $7.3 trillion dollars have come and gone since the Democrat-led Senate has adopted a budget. Not only is a budget a concrete fiscal plan, but it expresses a philosophy of governing. Democrats refusal to pass a budget and refusal to put their big-government economic theories on paper is of extraordinary significance. Making matters worse, the only budget submitted by the president is a fundamentally unserious plan that doubles our debt and speeds us to economic decline.....Paul Ryan (R-WI)


Back in May, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) stated, Theres no need to have a Democratic budget in my opinion.  It would be foolish for us to do a budget at this stage.  

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=44718
Uncas
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8 posted 07-30-2011 11:16 AM       View Profile for Uncas   Email Uncas   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Uncas

quote:
For more than two years, democrats have ignored their legal obligation to pass a budget, while we've seen federal spending spiral out of control.


Again Mike as far as I understand it this is compete twaddle. Neither the Democrats or Republicans 'Pass a budget'. The President presents a budget, Congress debates and amends the budget and then passes it back to the President to sign it.

Besides, if the above statement is true and the Democrats haven't passed a budget for 800 days that suggests that the budgets in place during that time were passed by Republicans - in which case why isn't everyone blaming them for the current spending levels?

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Nice. I present various links to support the point and all you can say is "if they are true" and then go back to blaming republicans. It's a waste of time. Go with whatever floats your boat. Have a good day
Uncas
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10 posted 07-30-2011 01:40 PM       View Profile for Uncas   Email Uncas   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Uncas

The stuff you posted doesn't make any sense Mike.

The democrat held Senate passed the 2011 budget in April this year, which, if I'm not mistaken, is less than 800 days ago.

The President presented his 2012 Budget in February, again less than 800 days.

I'm sure the 800 day figure is true in some obscure technical way but given the above facts I'm struggling to understand how, could you explain your assertion in a little more detail perhaps? In exactly which context has the Senate, the President or Democrats in general failed to pass or present a budget?

.
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11 posted 07-30-2011 02:51 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

You are right, uncas. I make no sense, everything you don't agree with is twaddle and there are no 800 days between 2008 and 2011 and Reid was right to say who needs a budget anyway. Put your bait back in the tackle box. The fishing hole is closed, as is our conversation.
Uncas
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12 posted 07-30-2011 03:24 PM       View Profile for Uncas   Email Uncas   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Uncas


quote:
You are right, uncas. I make no sense


That's ok Mike, I make no sense on occasion too.



I'm still curious though how anyone can claim that no budgets were passed by Democrats for 800 days. Perhaps someone else can explain it.

Bob?
Bob K
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13 posted 07-30-2011 06:01 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


Here are two points of view on a Huffington Post.  


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kraki/debt-ceiling-deadline-_n_911605_99678894.html


Heres a clearly left wing response that clarifies the matter somewhat by offering some history.  This is only one bit of history; you can look up others yourself.  

     Folks tend to forget the effect of the Democrats inability to limit debate in the Senate.  The Republicans have been able to block a lot of legislation there that doesnt have at least 60 votes behind it.
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/04/07/964278/-Zombie-Lie:-That-Dems-Failed-to-Pass-BudgetNO,-GOP-Senators-BLOCKED-IT


     Also, it might be of some interest to look at the responses to the Time article I quoted in the initial posting.  There is some interesting back and forth about fiscal responsibility there that makes good points on both sides.

     I think the Republican strategy in the last couple of years is to keep the country running at as close to an emergency level as it can, by the way.  Keeping budgets from passing or extending the times between passing them is an excellent way of doing this.  Forgetting their own part in doing the damage seems a helpful tactic in carrying that strategy out.  In my opinion.
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14 posted 07-31-2011 07:27 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K




     More information on the Republican budget.  I include a short article from The Economist as well as an article from the left and a more centrist article from the Kaiser foundation which tackles what The Economist identifies as some of the main points of the Republican budget.  Those involve an attack on Medicaire and on health insurance, a shift in cost to the private sector, a large increase in rates to the private sector and more lirrle gifts from the right.


http://www.economist.com/blogs/freeexchange/2011/04/americas_budget

http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2011/04/ryan_medicare.html

http://www.kff.org/medicare/upload/8179.pdf


     These are more attacks on the poor, the sick and the elderly with benefits going to insurance companies and the drug companies.  Having failed rto get their way by the standard legislative process, the Republicans are now attempting to hold the entire country hostage for the benefit of their sponsors.  Who benefits from this fiasco?
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15 posted 07-31-2011 07:58 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Nice going, Bob!! Limbaugh did a montage yesterday of all of the talking heads using the words hostage. There were 15 or 16, I think....and here you are. He missed you
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     Are you back to quoting Limbaugh again?  I thought you told me that you didn't want me to mention his name to you any more.  Certainly the fact that Limbaugh can put together a group of people saying that the Republicans are holding the country hostage must mean that the Republicans aren't doing so, is that what you're suggesting?  

     Things mean the opposite of what they mean?  If people say that the Republicans are holding the government and the people hostage, then we need to discount that possibility out of hand?

     On what basis do you suggest that we consider this proposition?  Is there some evidence you'd like to present?  Is there some logic you have to support your point of view here?  Does Limbaugh offer some logic that you feel is worth examination and which you would like to advance as reasonable and a thoughtful analysis of events?

     I would very much like to examine such a train of reasoning, one that you feel you could stand behind as a solid piece of logic and a thoughtful analysis of this difficult situation.  You may have forgotten my offering my thoughts on the debt situation, and how I thought the Republican plan was dangerous, but I did go into some detail, including how I felt that default would be a de facto tax increase on most of the country without any of the actual benefit to the treasury that a tax increase would give us.  

     Either destroy the safety net or cause a catastrophe by increasing interest rates and increasing unemployment, those are the options the Republicans have offered.

     Neither you nor Mr. Limbaugh apparently believe that is holding the country hostage.  You will have to explain that to me rather than make fun of the notion before I can understand it, because neither you nor Mr. Limbaugh make any sense to me on this matter at all.  Use of irony and contempt can be clever and winsome, but they don't offer a decent alternative to a clear and straightforward explanation.

     Perhaps you could have Limbaugh put together a montage of people saying that the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor for us, then, and that would make Pearl Harbor go away too?  You could do the same with the Armenian genocide and let the Turks off the hook for that one.  How about a list of people saying one thing or another is "the new black."  That would surely prove that black isn't black any more.

     But none of those cases would offer a clear explanation for how the Republicans, in your opinion, are doing other than holding the country up for random.

  
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17 posted 07-31-2011 10:20 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Bob, it's just another case of the word of the day being passed down to the talking heads to use. The ones Obama used were all of the talking heads from the major networks, CNN, and democratic congressmen. This is nothing new. We've seen examples of it before, such as with gravitas, which was discussed here.

You want an intelligent discussion and preface with comments like how the republicans attack on the poor, the sick and the elderly and hold the country hostage?? Maybe you forgot to throw in how they hate and want to kill the elderly and want all democrats neutered?? Sorry, Bob, but I see nothing in your comments to invite rational discussion.
Bob K
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since 11-03-2007
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18 posted 07-31-2011 11:53 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     "The ones Obama used" is called begging the question, Mike.  You haven' proved that The President did any such thing.  You simply assert it, and hope that it goes by without questioning.  I mentioned in an earlier comment my own reasons for thinking the Republican plans were ill considered, and a did a quick recap of some of them in my comments above.

     In case you missed the specific parts, I said this in the above posting

quote:

     I would very much like to examine such a train of reasoning, one that you feel you could stand behind as a solid piece of logic and a thoughtful analysis of this difficult situation.  You may have forgotten my offering my thoughts on the debt situation, and how I thought the Republican plan was dangerous, but I did go into some detail, including how I felt that default would be a de facto tax increase on most of the country without any of the actual benefit to the treasury that a tax increase would give us.  

     Either destroy the safety net or cause a catastrophe by increasing interest rates and increasing unemployment, those are the options the Republicans have offered.

     Neither you nor Mr. Limbaugh apparently believe that is holding the country hostage.  You will have to explain that to me rather than make fun of the notion before I can understand it, because neither you nor Mr. Limbaugh make any sense to me on this matter at all.  Use of irony and contempt can be clever and winsome, but they don't offer a decent alternative to a clear and straightforward explanation.



     The evaluation of the Republican Budget offered by The Economist a right wing journal certainly supports the majority of my assertions here, and I offered the reference to the article above.  Even if you had only read that article and ignored the neutral, centrist article by The Kaiser Health network, you would have difficulty backing up your statements.  Had you seen the graphs and charts offered by the Kaiser people, you would need to account for your dismissal of my assertions that the Republicans were holding the country hostage in a more concrete fashion than you have Especially since you say you are against tax increases or their equivalent imposed by government action.

     The Republicans are offering exactly the choice I say they are offering.  Refusing to address the details of the issue doesn't make them vanish of make them blink out of existence.  Suggesting that I'm stupid doesn't make reality go away.  Suggesting that there are people who use the same language in suggesting that the Republicans of behaving badly doesn't make them wrong.  Suggesting that I am among those people says that you think that I go along with whatever the prevailing talking points happen to be in my party.  

     I haven't agreed with you often enough to make you happy, nor have I disagreed with my party enough to make you happy, but I have disagreed with my party a fair amount of the time, and surely frequently enough for you to have noticed that I'm not reflexive about the tepid stances taken by the current democratic party leadership.  Pfui.

     There's some dangerous stuff going on on the right wing of the Republican party, Mike, and even the Majority leader can't keep the wing nuts spinning in a reasonable direction.  And he's been trying.  Do you think I haven't noticed?  Or that the rest of us haven't as well?  Puh-leeze!
Denise
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19 posted 08-01-2011 12:11 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Yeah, can't believe those dangerous crazy wing-nuts calling for ACTUAL spending cuts instead of illusory ones and calling for the government to live within its means instead of spending our children and grandchildren into slavery.

They should be absolutely ashamed of themselves.
Uncas
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since 07-30-2010
Posts 348


20 posted 08-01-2011 01:41 PM       View Profile for Uncas   Email Uncas   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Uncas

I think the everyone recognises that cuts and revenue increases are unavoidable Denise but tying them to the debt ceiling vote probably wasn't a very good idea.

As to balancing the budget - it's a good idea in theory but how would it work in practice?
Take 2010 for instance, the US revenue minus social security was 1.297 trillion
Spending, minus social security payments, was 2.755 trillion consisting of the following:

Medicare/Medicaid = 793 billion
Interest = 197 billion
Other Mandatory spending = 416 billion
Discretionary spending = 660 billion
Defence = 689 billion

Out of the above list you need to lose 1.458 trillion dollars to balance the budget, what would you cut? I'd dump Medicare and Medicaid and the whole of the defence spending.

.
Denise
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21 posted 08-01-2011 03:49 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Those aren't the only options for improving our bottom line. As I said countless times, stop the illegal war in Libya, bring all the troops home from everywhere, especially since the new rules of engagement barely allow them the the opportunity of self-defense, stop funding the refurbishing of Mosques in all those countries, stop all foregin aid to all the countries that despise us, get rid of Obamacare, and expand the tax base by reforming the burdensome regulations, penalize job out-sourcing and lower the cost and bureaucratic hassles of doing business in the U.S.
Uncas
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since 07-30-2010
Posts 348


22 posted 08-01-2011 04:17 PM       View Profile for Uncas   Email Uncas   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Uncas


So you'd cut a large chunk of defence spending, some discretionary spending and increase revenue by reducing the base tax rate but increasing the number of tax payers.

Sounds reasonable, it's a start at least but could we flesh it out a bit?

Have you any ballpark figures in mind?  Would 50% cuts in defence and discretionary spending be reasonable or a tad too much?  What would the flat rate tax be and how many jobs would need to be created to balance the budget?

.
Denise
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23 posted 08-04-2011 06:38 AM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

I would get rid of Obamacare before I would look further onto other areas to stop the abuse of spending, and with it its 20 plus new bureacracies. Next the Dept of Energy, Dept of Education and on down the line. I think Defense spending, beyond the wasteful spending that can be found in it, as outlined by Rep. Allen West, should essentially remain untouched, other than the money that would not be spent in an illegal war in Libya and the money still being spent in Iraq and Afghanistan while not allowing the troops to fight the enemy.

I think all entitlement programs should be frozen at their 2008 levels for the time being, just as most of our salaries out here in the real world have been frozen. And all illegal immigrants should not be eligible to receive any entitlement program money and benefits. And again, I think we should stop all foreign aid around the world and not even consider it again until we get our own house in order. I can't give charitable donations at this time because I have just enough to take care of my own needs. The government needs to wake up to that reality as well.

Uncas
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since 07-30-2010
Posts 348


24 posted 08-04-2011 01:18 PM       View Profile for Uncas   Email Uncas   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Uncas


I agree with almost all of your suggestions Denise but I don't think that'll be anywhere near enough, close to one and a half trillion dollars is a very very large amount of money.  Have you any ballpark figures to go with your suggested savings?

.
 
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