Democrats & Liberals Archives

Deficit-Reduction Republicans

Republicans shout from the rooftops: We want a smaller government and we want to reduce the deficit. Evidently, shouting from the rooftops is not enough. Republicans have now issued a manifesto that says that if they get a majority in Congress, they will reduce the deficit and reduce the government through spending cuts.

How will they balance the budget by 2020? They don't say. They talk about repealing the healthcare plan, but that will increase the deficit according to the Congresional Budget Office. They want to save the remainder of the TARP bailout money. Great, that will save $16 billion - peanuts. And they insist on keeping the Bush tax cuts for the rich; the $700 billion will swamp the $16 billion TARP savings. All that's left is what they call spending cuts.

What cuts in spending? They claim a few programs they will not cut. They do not tell us what they will cut. Paul Krugman explains the Republican Pledge to America this way:

..... Howard Gleckman of the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center has done the math. As he points out, the only way to balance the budget by 2020, while simultaneously (a) making the Bush tax cuts permanent and (b) protecting all the programs Republicans say they won’t cut, is to completely abolish the rest of the federal government: “No more national parks, no more Small Business Administration loans, no more export subsidies, no more N.I.H. No more Medicaid (one-third of its budget pays for long-term care for our parents and others with disabilities). No more child health or child nutrition programs. No more highway construction. No more homeland security. Oh, and no more Congress.”

Is this what Republicans want? Or do they want, and are afraid to say, what Tea Partiers have been saying for months: to get rid of Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Department of Education, Department of Energy and many regulatory agencies? Who knows? The document is a fraud. It's full of rhetoric denouncing the current administration, but offers no plan to do anything except to make tax cuts for the rich permanent. To quote Krugman again:

In essence, what they say is, “Deficits are a terrible thing. Let’s make them much bigger.”

Democrats are fighting to help middle class workers get jobs and Republicans are fighting to help the rich get tax cuts. Democrats seek a government effective for everyone, while Republicans seek a government that is good for Big Business (definitely not small business). Democrats tell you what they stand for, while Republicans hide what they intend to do; they know that if they told the truth, nobody would vote Republican.

Republicans for deficit reduction? It's like Hoover saying that prosperity is around the corner. With Boehner in charge, we won't have deficit reduction and we definitely will not have prosperity - except for the rich.

Posted by Paul Siegel at September 24, 2010 6:00 PM
Comments
Comment #309197

It’s called Math for Morons.

Posted by: gergle at September 24, 2010 6:38 PM
Comment #309198

Paul,
Actually the Denocratic and Republican Party could make the debt disappear tommorrow if they care to use Bushonomics. For though others may have to explain how the federal government can run things off the official books if it is to belittle people into thinking America does not owe as much as they think than creative accounting can serve as the magic bullet.

However, if the Democrats and Republicans are serious about reducing the actual national debt while creating the good paying jobs of the middle class than there are things the President and Congress can do over the next couple of years to reduce the federal budget and decrease the size of government.

For example; owning 60% of GM they can work out a deal through their vehicle replacement plan to acquire American made electric cars and trucks. And though we can expect the first round or two of these vehicles not to be of the best standard of the industry, like in the 1970’s the government and not the private citizen can handle the expense of mass producing electric cars and trucks.

Than there are the loopholes in the tax code which not only allows some small business owners to pay no yaxes, but also require the government workers to implement and maintain the programs. Thus, eliminating several of these loopholes should/will not only have the affect of increasing the tax revenue without changing the tax rates, but also make the federal government smaller as the workers will no longer be needed to operate the programs which allow some small business owners to walk away oweing no taxes at the end of the year.

Therefore, the Democratic and Republicans on the Far Left and Far Right can use “Magic Accounting” to reduce the debt or the Liberals and Tea Party can work together in Congress to pass the Bills needed to reduce the Federal Budget and the size of Federal Government while enjoying the increase in tax revenue; However, given the acts of today out West, I do believe both sides have a long way to go in order to achieve a Political Viable Solution.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 24, 2010 7:27 PM
Comment #309202

The Republicans are used car salesmen. I say that reluctantly, because I know many of those salesmen would be offended by the comparison.

They are selling us the same car they just drove into the ditch. Why are they doing this? Because they can. Because their own people never make the connection between the deficit we’re now running and the Republican’s policies. They simply think it’s spending alone. They never realized that they couldn’t get the money they’re getting back without somebody having to sell future taxpayer dollars to the Chinese to fund it.

It is not a coincidence that America has gone from being the greatest creditor in the world to the greatest debtor under Republican policy.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 24, 2010 8:08 PM
Comment #309204

Republicans trade in fear. That’s their politics. Fear of the deficit is simply the fear of the day. It doesn’t matter if their arguments make any logical or economic sense. All that matters is that they create and exploit fear.

Posted by: Rich at September 24, 2010 9:06 PM
Comment #309205

Or make things up….

http://factcheck.org/2010/09/factchecking-the-pledge/

Posted by: jane doe at September 24, 2010 9:35 PM
Comment #309207

Paul you seem to be surprised that the repubs/conservatives are offering more of the same. Nothing new, yet to hear the conservative apologist for both the tea baggers and the repubs it is the answer to all of the nations problems. Because I believe I have as much clairvoyance as Beretta I will now predict the conservative apologist, should they respond at all, will try to hijack this post with nonsensical talking points to turn the subject away from Boehner’s “promise” to America.

How humiliating for the conservative movement followers to put their trust into the repubs/conservatives/tea baggers only to find out the new conservatives messiah’s are devoid of any new ideas, despite their promises after their 2008 thrashing.Fascism disguised as conservatism still doesn’t work yet they do not seem to be able to grasp this basic concept.

Posted by: j2t2 at September 24, 2010 10:52 PM
Comment #309209

.americayouaskedforit.wordpress.com/2010/05/14/youcut-initiative-change-the-culture-of-federal-spending-to-a-culture-of-saving/


• Hold Weekly Votes on Spending Cuts: Earlier this year, House Republicans launched the YouCut initiative to combat the permissive culture of runaway spending in Congress. Over the course of nine weeks, YouCut produced proposals to save taxpayers more than $120 billion. We will continue to hold weekly votes on spending cuts.


http://www.republicanwhip.house.gov/YouCut/

Week One: Cut the New Non-Reformed Welfare Program ($25 Billion Savings)
Week Two: Eliminate Federal Employee Pay Raise ($30 Billion Savings)
Week Three: Reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac ($30 Billion Savings)
Week Four: Sell Excess Federal Property ($15 Billion Savings)
Week Five: Prohibit Hiring New IRS Agents to Enforce Health Care Law ($15 Billion Savings)
Week Six: Taxpayer Subsidized Union Activities ($1.2 Billion Savings)
Week Seven: Prohibit Stimulus Funding for Promotional Signage (Tens of Millions)
Week Eight: Prohibit Sleeper Car Subsidies on Amtrak ($1.2 billion Savings)
Week Nine: Bipartisan Proposal to Terminate AEITC ($1.1 billion Savings)
Week Ten: Require Collection of Unpaid Taxes From Federal Employees ($1 billion Savings)

.republicanwhip.house.gov/YouCut/week2.htm

Federal Employee Pay Raise
A recent Resurgent Republic poll revealed that the American people are increasingly fed up with the perpetually growing salaries and benefits enjoyed by federal employees. Not to be deterred, federal employee unions continue to beat the drum for another round of federal pay raises at a time when the private sector is experiencing unprecedented levels of unemployment to the tune of nearly ten percent. This week’s winning YouCut proposal would put a stop to the next round of raises.

President Proposes Another Pay Raise For Federal Civilian Employees: As part of his FY 2011 Budget submission President proposed raising federal civilian pay by 1.4% beginning in January of next year. This will be on top of the 2.0% raise federal civilian employees received this past January, the 3.9% raise they received the previous January, and the 3.5% raise they received the January before that. Freezing federal civilian pay at the current level for one year would save approximately $2 billion next year and $30 billion over ten years.
Federal Employee Unions Say It Isn’t Enough: “We are going to work very hard with Congress to adjust the 1.4% pay raise upward,” said AFGE National President John Gage. “…a 1.4% pay raise will do nothing to close the remaining pay gap between federal and non-federal salaries.” “I believe that all federal employees, whether civilian or military, are deserving of a fair pay raise. [NTEU] will work with our military colleagues and members of Congress in an effort both to ensure parity continues and to explore possibilities of increasing the amount as the White House proposal moves through the legislative process.” - NTEU President Colleen Kelley.
Federal Employee Pay Raises Outpace Private Sector: According to data compiled by the Congressional Research Service, since 2000 Federal Civil Service pay has increased by 40.6%. Over that same period average wages in America for all workers only increased by 34%. President Obama has proposed an additional 1.4% pay raise for federal employees beginning in January.
Even Bigger Disparity During The Recession: The growth of federal salaries compared to average wages in America has been even more pronounced during the current recession. Since 2007, federal civilian wages have increased by 9.7% while overall average wages have only increased by 6.7%, which means federal employees have received pay raises over 40% bigger than the increase in average wages.
Federal Employees Make More Than Their Private Sector Counterparts: USA Today recently compared the pay of federal employees with their counterparts in the private sector. They found that average federal salaries exceed average private-sector pay in 83% of comparable occupations.
Benefits For Federal Employees Far Exceed Those In The Private Sector: The figures above only tell part of the story. They fail to include the value of benefits; such as health care and pensions. Chris Edwards of the CATO Institute used data from the government’s Bureau of Economic Analysis to compare wages and benefits for federal civilian employees with those in the private sector. Once benefits are taken into account, federal civilian employees received on average $60,000 more in pay benefits than the average private sector employee in 2008.

http://www.foxnews.com/projects/pdf/pledgetoamerica.pdf

Call to Action
Built through a process of listening to the people, this is our Pledge to America. To begin the process of implementing a new governing agenda that honors our Constitution and reflects the will of the people, we call on the leadership of the 111th Congress to bring these reforms and policies to an immediate vote, and ask all citizens of our Nation – men and women of good will and good heart – who share in our beliefs, to join with us today.

I hope the Republican Party’s Pledge To America signing will include candidates and members of all parties who agree with all or parts of the pledge. I hope to see many signatures from those that are not members of the 111th congress and I hope to see them welcomed, regardless of party affiliation.


Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2010 1:19 AM
Comment #309210

It is kind of horrifying, though, to watch the conservative Republicans circle around the country like vultures, ready to finish the job and kill the economy. They’re going to try to finish off the country once and for all: redistribute the wealth to the rich and large corporations, destroy the middle class, subject the working poor and just plain poor to endless penury, and end all attempts to implement social justice. The amazing thing is that social conservatives are so blinded by racism and homophobia, they are more than willing to follow Limbuagh and the other voices of hate and destroy their perceived enemies even if it means destroying themselves.

Posted by: phx8 at September 25, 2010 1:36 AM
Comment #309211

Weary Willie,
Deficits and debt are definitely a problem; however, deficits and debt are a symptom of the problem, not the mojor proximate cause of the problem. Addressing the problems with the economy means prioritizing, and recognizing which problems are causing the situation, and which ones are the result.

If you will recall, Clinton and the Democrats came into power in 1992 facing a mild economic downturn and horrible deficits. With the Omnibus Act of 1993-94 they raised taxes, and within a few years the deficit and debt stabilized, and by the end of Clinton’s administration, we were projecting a 10 year surplus of $10 trillion!

It is popular among conservatives to attack federal employees because they enjoy good benefits and they are paid pretty well, and those benefits and pay are funded by taxpayer dollars. Once upon a time, most Americans enjoyed good benefits and pay, funded by American corporations. It seems hard to believe now, but there was a time when American lalorers retired from a lifetime of work for their company with a pension and medical benefits. Isn’t that amazing? Today, outside of the roughly 15% of employees protected by unions, that kind of retirement and security is now unknown. It’s just a dream…

Posted by: phx8 at September 25, 2010 1:59 AM
Comment #309212

Weary Willie,
Good Luck; however, until we see the Members of Congress and the CEOs of Wall Street start taking serious paycuts and get the cost of living under conytol than you are barking up the wrong tree.

For why those in the private sector can quit and go to work for the government in order to increase their pay. Like the Comservatives have said to the Liberals over the pay of the Top Management of the bail out corporations on Wall Street “Shouldn’t the Free Market Decide?” I do believe the Federal Employees are standing on solid ground.

Besides if those in the Private Sector believe they are not getting the fair pay they deserve than they are allow to form an union, go on strike, stage work delays, and so on and so forth. Yes, the private sector in this economic crisis can be put into a position where they forfeit their business and investments. And though it will not look pretty and even may lead to more hard time for Americas’ Labor and Management. I for one do not have a problem with Big Business being forced to raise the wages of all workers to the same Standard of Living enjoyed and protected by our State and Federal Governments.

For if the alrenative is to keep lowering the earnings of Labor and Management than shouldn’t the leaders of the private sector and their stock holders be out in front so they may show us the way? Now, care to prove to me the Kroch Brothers are willing to go from the 5th Richest Americans to the 5th Poorest Americans over the next two years?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 25, 2010 2:01 AM
Comment #309214

phx8

who was it that controlled congress for the majority of clintons tenure? there may have been a budget surplus at the end of his term, but the ten trillion was only a projection based on things continuing as they had. there was never ten trillion in the bank.

Posted by: dbs at September 25, 2010 7:49 AM
Comment #309215

Weary Willie
Resurgent Republicans is more like it. The polling outfit is even worse than Rasmussen. Rasmussen doesn’t basically say on its own site that it’s about shaping the debate towards the Republicans.

Resurgent Republic is a 501(c)(4) organization dedicated to shaping the debate over the proper role of government. It is an independent, not-for-profit organization modeled on Democracy Corps, which has made important contributions to the public debate from the left and has proven to be a valuable resource for labor unions, environmentalists, and liberal Congressional leaders.

Resurgent Republic seeks to replicate on the right the success Democracy Corps has enjoyed on the left. As does Democracy Corps, Resurgent Republic will make survey and focus group results publicly available.

But let’s cut to the chase: a few percentage points raise and better benefits are nothing compared to the 10% per year pay increases that CEOs and executives enjoyed during the Bush years, and they have a hell of a lot more to do with why people are comparatively less well off in the private sector than the good wages of federal workers.

If we’re going to be envious of somebody, if we’re going to engage in class warfare, why don’t we do so with the folks who are actually responsible for setting pay and benefits for their workers.

As for the Pledge? The Pledge is a joke. It essentially says, “we’re coming back, and we’re not going to do a damn thing different.”

And why a pledge? Why not another contract? Why the weaker word? Are Republicans afraid their base might actually hold them to it? Like Krugman said in the quotes above, not only are the Republicans bound to increase the deficit with their proposals, they can’t even hope to protect all they say they will protect and actually make the offsets to pay for the tax cuts.

The Republicans aren’t interested in constructive policy. They’re interested in keeping and gaining power for their own sake, and they’ll say anything right now to get it back from the Democrats.

dbs-
It never was, was it? Yet when people on the Right claim that Obama’s deficits are unsustainable, on what basis do they make this pronouncement?

The Trouble for the Republicans is that they cannot find the money to make up for what they’re going to cut in taxes. Since they cannot guarantee the economic results, that is an irresponsible policy.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 25, 2010 10:07 AM
Comment #309217

Wow. Just wow. If the lack of responses to this post by conservatives is any indication, the Democrats do indeed have a chance to hold the House and Senate. Although I think it would be very instructive indeed should the conservatives win both houses of Congress, I’m not sure the country could survive it. If radical changes in the mindset of Americans is required to progress, however, perhaps a change of party is what we need.

My fear is that the Conservatives (GOP/TEAParty) will win the House, the Democrats will retain the Senate and absolutely nothing will get done which is all the conservative leaders really want anyway. They’d love it if Obama took the hard hit and the heat for making the tough decisions to save the economy and then the conservatives step in after blaming Obama for it all. They’d probably try not to kill what’s been achieved as they claim credit for any recovery. But it wouldn’t take long to cycle back to a toxic economy again.

BTW, thanks to conservative mindsets like Imhofe, we’ll be buying all our alternative energy equipment from the Chinese.

Mandarin, anyone?

Posted by: LibRick at September 25, 2010 10:28 AM
Comment #309219

Republican’s Pledge to America kicks off the War on Arithmetic

Posted by: Taylor at September 25, 2010 12:44 PM
Comment #309220

Henry wrote; “I for one do not have a problem with Big Business being forced to raise the wages of all workers to the same Standard of Living enjoyed and protected by our State and Federal Governments.”

Seldom have I read a more ignorant and self-serving comment. One only needs the ability to read to know that many of our state governments are drowning in red ink with government employee pay and benefits being a huge contributor to that sad financial state.

Gov. Schwarzenegger of California recently stated that the state’s spending on retirment benefits for state employees is growing at triple the rate of state revenues. Now exceeding $6 billion ($6,000 million) annually and growing at the rate of 15% a year it is crowding out spending for education, enviromental protection, parks, law enforcement and more. In just one decade California has gone from Golden Icon to Bankrupt Bum.

Governor’s of Michigan (D), Illinois (D) and New Jersey (R) and New York (D) candidate Andrew Cuomo, have all recognized the problem and have done, or advocate making, changes to government pay, benefits and retirement packages.

State and local governments are not subject to the kind of profit and loss restraints that dominate the private sector. They obtain their revenues by the coercion of the public through taxes. They can not go out of business. The public will always foot the bill.

For Federal employees, for nine years in a row they have been awarded bigger average pay and benefit increases. The total compensation gap between federal and private workers has doubled in the past decade according to data from the federal bureau of Economic Analysis.

While private sector American’s suffer from this recession those on the government payrole thrive. Millions of public workers have become the new privileged class.

States and localities don’t have the federal government’s ability to print money so these excesses will likely continue until the public anger forces change.

The “Pew Center on the States” study reveals that our state’s face an underfunded benefit and pension obligation that exceeds $1 trillion ($1,000,000 million). And, that estimate was made before the stock market drop in the last couple of years. Liabilities for debts for these entities have incresed from an estimated 12 percent of GDP in 1980 to an estimated 22 percent this year, approaching $2.5 trillion (2,500,000 million).

My questin for Henry is simple. With our national and many state governments deeply in debt and some near bankruptcy why would you wish to force this same financial nightmare on our private sector that pays all the bills.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 12:45 PM
Comment #309221


.republicanwhip.house.gov/YouCut/week2.htm



Eliminate Federal Employee Pay Raise
As part of his FY 2011 Budget submission President proposed raising federal civilian pay by 1.4% beginning in January of next year. This will be on top of the 2.0% raise federal civilian employees received this past January, the 3.9% raise they received the previous January, and the 3.5% raise they received the January before that. Freezing federal civilian pay at the current level for one year would save approximately $2 billion next year and $30 billion over ten years.

Rep. Joe Donnelly, Indiana - 2, voted against limiting a federal employee pay raise. He voted to give himself and his subordinates a raise during the “Worst Recession since the Great
Depression”!

It’s time to focus on the un-employment line, Joe Dunally! Make your vote count by giving that raise to the next representative of Indiana - 2.

Donnally is Dunally!

Repeal the 27th amendment.
Text
No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened.

Joe Donnally voted not to intervene!

Does this cost us money?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-seventh_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution#Cost_of_living_adjustments

Cost of living adjustments
Congressional cost of living adjustments (COLAs) have been upheld against legal challenges based on this amendment. In Boehner v. Anderson,[7] the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that the Twenty-seventh Amendment does not affect annual COLAs. In Schaffer v. Clinton,[8] the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit ruled that receiving such a COLA does not grant members of the Congress standing in federal court to challenge that COLA; the Supreme Court did not hear either case and so has never ruled on this amendment’s effect on COLAs.

Many seniors have “suffered” the “disgrace” of not getting a COLA, yet Joe Donnally and his subordinates are immune? The travisty! The shame! The injustice of it all! Ok, It’s not all
that. It’s just wrong.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2010 1:08 PM
Comment #309222

Speaking of costing us money. Nothing has cost as much as the Cheney/Bush famous tax cut for the wealthy. The cut that didn’t cut it…didn’t create jobs at home, but did a bag-up job of it in India, China and Bangladesh…the one that didn’t save our economy, but did almost ruin it.

http://www.tax.com/taxcom/taxblog.nsf/Permalink/CHAS-89LPZ9?OpenDocument

We, as a nation, and we as a people have lost a lot to that tax cut, and some here and in Congress wish to pile even more on.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 25, 2010 1:35 PM
Comment #309223

Thank you Willie for the info. Does anyone find it curious that those on Social Security did not receive a COLA increase last year while government employees continue to receive COLA’s?

Is it that government employees are working longer unpaid hours? NO! Is it that government employees are producing more work product? NO! Did the cost of living go up? NO!

The answer is simple. Government workers unions have contributed huge amounts of money to political campaigns and this is their payback.

Why is it that some dems and all libersocialists can’t understand that only the private sector pays for government spending? Their serious mental disorder allows them to continue to believe that all can ride in the wagon with no one pulling or pushing it.

Some of these demented fools maintain that because government workers pay taxes, they significantly pay for their wages and mind-bending, fiscal solvency ending, benefits. Deluded tooth-fairy nonsense.

Let’s suppose everyone worked for government as in Cuba and other libersocialist paradises around the world. Well, in Cuba, doctors and waitresses receive the same $20 per month. Except that being a waitress is a better deal as they get tips. And, I read a few days ago that the Castro brothers have decided to reduce the government payrole and simply throw a few hundred thousand off and let them fend for themselves.

You bet Henry…let’s follow that lead to poverty, despair, and revolution.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 1:49 PM
Comment #309224

Royal Flush,
Instead of bringing public employee wages and benefits down to everyone else’s level, why not bring everyone else’s level up to the level of public employees?

I understand there are cases in which organizations made bad contracts with employees; for example, one state guaranteed its workers an annual increase of 8% on its pension fund. Whoops? Although it seemed like a good idea at the time, that kind of benefit is clearly unsustainable, so I would agree with you that egregious examples need to be brought into line with the sad economic reality of 2010.

However, I refuse to accept the underlying pessimism in the assumption that everything must be cut, and everything that has to do with workers must be reduced or eliminated. We are already in an economic period of asset deflation, and pardon this bit of pessimism, but economic deflation is a very, very bad thing. You are familiar with credit unions, so you understand the effect upon loans, interest rates, and so on. In Las Vegas NV, over half the home loans are underwater. This is a shocking statistic. In Phoenix, that number is just under 50%. The implications are terrible.

How, then, to counter this terrible situation? How to grow the economy as a whole, and create a healthy business climate?

Approaching the problem by cutting deficits and debt is a horrible idea. That is a symptom, not the cause. Fiscal policy offers no outs, because the Federal Reserve has already cut interest rates as much as possible. That leaves monetary policy- spending and taxation- and that means it must be directed towards job creation, and fostering an environment that re-creates wage growth. The ‘Pledge to America’ is an obscene attempt to regain power by making foolish promises, the same promises that resulted in the current situation.

Without the growth of wages and benefits, there is no hope.

Posted by: phx8 at September 25, 2010 1:53 PM
Comment #309225

Royal Flush,
By the way, there can be no successful capitalism or free market without government regulation and oversight? If you disagree, consider the real life situations where no government or regulation exists, such as Somalia.

Posted by: phx8 at September 25, 2010 1:57 PM
Comment #309226

Tax.com is a daily report arm of Tax Analysts, a non-partisan group formed in 1970 to provide information to the American people via a news magazine. While not very well known, the organization has grown fairly large in recent years and has become a player on the international scene. My link above can take you to the column I’ve been reading, but a synopsis of it is:

Compared to year 2000 dollars, from 2001 to 2008 our people lost 2.7 trillion in spendable income. Had it not been for the cuts, we might not have needed the Stimulus Bill, and much of the recovery from our financial houses misdeeds could be history by this time.

It is a non-partisan commentary, so conservatives can read it…er…if those who are interested in such things can actually read.

Just so you wan’t have to back track, here it is again:

http://www.tax.com/taxcom/taxblog.nsf/Permalink/CHAS-89LPZ9?OpenDocument

Posted by: Marysdude at September 25, 2010 2:05 PM
Comment #309227

PS:

Isn’t one of the new conservative planks to extend the Cheney/Bush cuts forever?

Posted by: Marysdude at September 25, 2010 2:09 PM
Comment #309228

Without the growth of wages and benefits, there is no hope.
Posted by: phx8 at September 25, 2010

My friend, wages and benefits are growing by leaps and bounds for government workers. You wrote; “Instead of bringing public employee wages and benefits down to everyone else’s level, why not bring everyone else’s level up to the level of public employees?”

Well gee…why didn’t I think of that. Hmmm, let’s see, if the average American wage (those that still have a job) is around $50,000, why not just increase the minimum wage to match that average.

Let’s analyzie that for just a moment. With this strategy the entry level worker would now be paid the same as the average experienced worker who attained his/her level of pay after approximaely 10 years. Immediately, this worker would have to be paid more to compensate and adjust for time worked and experience. With that, upper level management would need to be paid more. That will increase COLA so all those receiving government benefits would have to be paid more including government workers. Please understand that one cannot create something out of nothing. Without increased productivity there can be no justified and sensible increase in wages and benefits.

My simple question phx8 is…from where does the money come to pay for this? OH, yes…more taxes. Taxes must be increased to pay for all this “social justice” and with that increase we are right back to the same net pay as before and much deeper in debt as is evidenced by our states and federal ledgers filled with red ink.

What you and others fail to realize or take into account is that there simply is no free ride. It is the belief that we can increase wages and benefits without paying for it that has our states and federal governments in such deep red ink. If you think otherwise, please explain.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 2:17 PM
Comment #309229

Damn guberment employes making all that money.

Posted by: Jeff at September 25, 2010 3:31 PM
Comment #309230

Dude, thanks for the link, interesting. However, contrary to your statement…

“It is a non-partisan commentary, so conservatives can read it…er…if those who are interested in such things can actually read.”

here are some facts from the CBO. I believe I will accept their accounting rather than the obviously slanted one you linked. BTW, I read and comprehend well. You?

Revenues flowed into the Treasury at about the rate that the CBO forecasted in 2000, a full year before the first tax relief legislation was signed. The CBO forecasted total revenues of $2.7 trillion for 2007 (one year before the Great Recession began) when it issued its 10-year budget outlook in 2000. When the CBO published its 10-year outlook in 2007, it reported revenues for that year of $2.6 trillion, or 96.2 percent of the total it expected seven years earlier and before any knowledge of the tax relief legislation or the recession of 2001. Their forecast for 2008 made in 2007 called for revenues of $2.77 trillion, which would have been 98 percent of the forecast made in 2000.

As always, it is not the lack of revenue that is driving our national deficit, but rather, obscene and out-of-control spending.

Conservatives want to keep current tax rates the same (at just about historical levels) and the libersocialists want to increase taxes to pay for increased spending. Sure do hope my side wins as that is a win for everyone.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 3:36 PM
Comment #309231

Jeff, brillian comment.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 3:37 PM
Comment #309232

Historic low levels I hope you mean. But thats not low enough for the repubofacists.

Posted by: Jeff at September 25, 2010 3:43 PM
Comment #309233

Jeff…revenue as a percent of GDP.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 3:46 PM
Comment #309234

From Jeff’s comments about taxes and government payrole and benefits one may wonder if he is,

1) Sucking on the government teat as an employee or other beneficiary…

2) Not paying any income taxes…

3) expects to soon be in category 1 or 2…

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 4:01 PM
Comment #309235

Jeff should do some research on “historic tax rates”. He would find that the historic lows were 1% to 7% when the 16th amendment was passed. It was after WWII and the socialist agenda was in full swing did the tax rates skyrocket and stay at “Historic High levels” at times up to 90%.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2010 4:12 PM
Comment #309236

http://www.truthandpolitics.org/top-rates.php

That was easy to find, for me.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2010 4:17 PM
Comment #309237

It was post WWII that the great middle class sprung up. With the aid of unions and the GI Bill, that middle class was allowed to flourish. That was the times of highest taxation, and about the time Repugnuts started whining about taxes. We pay few taxes now, and just look at us.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 25, 2010 4:38 PM
Comment #309238

RF No to your questions. So are you saying we should go back to tax rates of the oh say …1901?

Posted by: Jeff at September 25, 2010 4:41 PM
Comment #309239

PS:

If you want to say that Tax Analysts is a biased organization, shouldn’t you cite something that indicates you are right? Just because you disagree with those nice folks does not mean they are incorrect or shady in some way. It is a non-profit, non-partisan organization, and will remain so until you show it to not be so. Go on, try it. Show the proof of what you say. The economy lost 2.7 trillion in those eight years as compared to the base year of 2000. Prove that to not be so.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 25, 2010 4:43 PM
Comment #309240

Sorry Marysdude they never use truth or facts just fear. Or they use unions as some kind of boogyman.

Posted by: Jeff at September 25, 2010 5:00 PM
Comment #309241

RF No to your questions. So are you saying we should go back to tax rates of the oh say …1901?

Posted by: Jeff at September 25, 2010

One more time Jeff. I wish our tax rate to be within one or two percent of the historical average as a percent of GDP. Unlike the libersocialists and some Dems, I support tax revenues that reflect our nations productivity, not governments desire to spend.

Dude wrote; “It is a non-profit, non-partisan organization, and will remain so until you show it to not be so.”

OK dude…from your link, does this sound “non-partisan”

“This is economic madness. It is policy divorced from empirical evidence. It is insanity because the policies are illusory and delusional.

So why in the world is anyone giving any credence to the insistence by Republican leaders that tax cuts, more tax cuts, and deeper tax cuts are the remedy to our economic woes? Why are they not laughingstocks? It is one thing for Fox News to treat these policies as successful, but what of the rest of what Sarah Palin calls with some justification the “lamestream media,” who treat these policies as worthy ideas?

The Republican leadership is like the doctors who believed bleeding cured the sick. Our government, the basis of our freedoms, is spewing red ink, and the Republican solution is to spill ever more.

Those who ignore evidence and pledge blind faith in policy based on ideological fantasy are little different from the clerics who made Galileo Galilei confess that the sun revolves around the earth. The Capitol Hill and media Republicans differ only in not threatening death to those who deny their dogma.”

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 5:26 PM
Comment #309242

RF,
You said “Seldom have I read a more ignorant and self-serving comment” and than went on to rant bout how “One only needs the ability to read to know that many of our state governments are drowning in red ink with government employee pay and benefits being a huge contributor to that sad financial state. Well, thanks for the compilment.

For why you may call my comment ignorant and self-serving, may I call your boss Monday and tell him you agree to take a reduction in pay equal to $5.00/hour? Than allow me to call your bank and tell them about your new pay scale for they surely will be interested in how your going to make your next few car and house payments. But enough about you, since explaining to more than the 100 million working Americans Monday they will no longer be able to afford to send their children to school, pay for their homes, or even put food on their table all because the Top Management on Wall Street need to make their million dollar bonuses.

Yes, lowering the Standard of Living has begun and though it currently has only 1 in 6 or 1 in 7 Americans seeking charitable and government aid what will become of America when 1 in 2 or 1 in 3 Americans can no longer afford to pay their taxes, keep a roof over their head, or even feed their children on the promise of a 40 hour work week for the corporation. What than happens to the Better World envisioned by the Youth of the 60’s and Silver Spoons of the 70’s some 30 years ago?

Now, facing reality I realize that it would be nice if the Children of the 21st Century had enough millionires that a 4% reduction in federal taxes could give the other half of the population an instant $40,000.00/yr. increase in their personal income; however, just as our parents and grandparents discovered in the Late 60’s and Early 70’s today’s parents and grandparents need to learn that the math just isn’t there and even if it was the global effect would create yet more problems.

So why it may sound ignorant and self-serving to want to increase the Standard of living for all Americans especially during this economic trouble, knowing that it would be arrogant and self-centered of me to believe anyone could convince the Top 10% of Americans as well as the Bottom 10% of Americans to surrender their current Standard of Living for the hope that someday in the future “The Corporation” could return to the days when the 40 hour work week actually allowed the Americas’ Labor and Management to enjoy the Standard of Living our parents and grandparents did in the 1950’s and 60’s. I do believe as China is finding out that if the Corporations and Governments of the 21st Century are going to survive than the Consumer is going to need to have their pay increased or find an alternative source of income in order to maintain and increase their Standard of living given the simply fact no amount of wage reduction in the short term will solve the economic problems faced by America and Humanity.

Of course there is always the option that we carry out a mass exist of the cities and return to the days of hunting and gathering. But have hope RF, for why I realize that it may seem like Americas’ Democratic and Republican Leadership don’t have the answers this election cycle I for one have faith in My Brothers and Sisters of the 70’s as well as their Children to figure out a Political Viable Solution for keeping the American Dream Alive.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 25, 2010 5:45 PM
Comment #309243

Henry, your comments don’t reflect reality, just wishful thinking. I will stand by my comments to your statement…

Henry wrote; “I for one do not have a problem with Big Business being forced to raise the wages of all workers to the same Standard of Living enjoyed and protected by our State and Federal Governments.”

I wrote; “Seldom have I read a more ignorant and self-serving comment. One only needs the ability to read to know that many of our state governments are drowning in red ink with government employee pay and benefits being a huge contributor to that sad financial state.”

Henry did not even attempt to explain how his scheme would work in the real world and the consequences we would face should it be put into practice. It’s the old magical thinking syndrome. Your magic and our tax dollars.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 6:02 PM
Comment #309244

I forgot to ask Henry under what provision of our constitution would you find authorization for forcing business to do what you say?

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 6:33 PM
Comment #309245

RF,
Why I attempted to be as forthcoming as the Republicans I do see where one would think it is part of the old magical thinking syndrome to believe anyone would take a paycut just so others can keep their bigger slice of the pie. Nevertheless, there are things States can do with today’s technology that 30 years ago would have seemed impossible.

For example; through tax breaks and incentives a state could have a business produce, install, and maitain a renewable energy system for all Local and State facilities which would include public schools and colleges. And they could finance these projects through the sale of bonds and notes to their citizenry. Thus, why I would suggest that the return on the bonds and notes remain low I do believe if one would add up all the electricity local and state facilities use every year that the savings in the yearly budgets would be noticeable.

Another simple fix having to do with renewable energy would be the local and state fleets being toally electric. For although the average citizen may have a problem with the limited mileage of electric cars, the idea of having a fleet depot where drivers could exchange vehicles needed for more than a 100 miles worth of travel is another idea worth exploring.

Yes, even the Healthcare the States are responsible for can be done in a manner that not only saves money, but decreases the burden put on our doctors and medical staff. For example; most doctor visits and almost every ER visit can be done through video up-links and medical on-line support. And why these fields are still in the developing stage the fact a Doctor in New York can deliver medical treatment half-way around the world today should make it much easier for the State to provide medical treatment for the citizenry inside their borders.

And again the cost of saving unnecessary equippment useage, manpower, and a whole list of items could be noticable in the budgets once the Baby Boomers get over their fear of the new VCRs. So, unlike the Republicans magical thinking syndrome plan I do have many different ways in reducing the need for taxes and the ability to offset the deficits brought on by the lack of insight and responsibility of Americas’ Democratic and Republican Elected officials to respond to the issues of the 20th century.

However, due to government and societal contracts I must allow My Brothers and Sisters of the 70’s take the lead so their grandchildren can enjoy the same Guaranteed Civil and Constitutional Rights as the Youth of the 60’s and Silver Spoons of the 70’s. Besides, as one who has never fell for the idea that somehow the Private Sector could do a better job at building a better world than the Institutions of America I really don’t have an incentive in seeing the corporate world of the 21st Century win. For why I realize it is better for everyone if Americas’ Democratic and Republican Civil, Political, and Religious Leaders stay in charge of our political parties. In the game of becoming Self-Sustainable I do believe today’s stockholders would be better served if Americas’ Consumers of tommorrow did not have to rely on “The Corporation” for their basic income.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 25, 2010 7:13 PM
Comment #309246

RF,
Look up the articles which allows a corporation to be deemed a legal enterprise. Otherwise you’ll need to ask Davidto explain it.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 25, 2010 7:16 PM
Comment #309247

Henry, since you don’t respond to questions asked let’s just end this…OK?

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 7:21 PM
Comment #309248

RF,
As far as I know I did respond properly to the questions you asked. For one, you asked by what Authority can one impose on corporations wage control. Well, as an American Layman I am not allowed to give legal advice, but do know enough that if Congress can raise the wages of workers they can also lower the wages of workers. Anything further will need a Lawyer to explain. And as far as how to help pay for a higher standard of living I gave you several ideas.

However, while I did not expect you to comment on if I could tell your boss you would agree to be paid $5.00/ hour. You might be right about the need to end this conversation since there is no way to win.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 25, 2010 7:34 PM
Comment #309249

RF,

Telling the truth is NOT bias. They have been just as justifiably hard on Democrats. If they are as against one side for something adherents do, as they are on the other side for something those adherents do, is not that the very epitome of non-partisan, and without bias?

If a political party or the government sets a policy on taxation, and the Tax Analysts get ahold of it, everybody duck, because that organization pulls no punches in their report. Strange that you would not find that a good thing.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 25, 2010 7:49 PM
Comment #309250

Henry Schlatman, your Cobert impersonation needs some work.
I do have some respect for your suggestions, though. In fact, I am considering an electrical power source that will provide an income when integrated with my existing power grid created by the people in the seventies.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2010 7:58 PM
Comment #309251

Royal Flush-
Your rhetoric is a prime example of why we don’t need your party in power.

You say something to the effect that it would be so much better if federal employees felt the effects of the recession just as much as everybody else.

Damn, is that a stupid idea.

The height of stupidity that this idea aspires to comes from the fact that this is basically a demand-side driven economic downturn we’re going through. The companies, the banks have the money. Unfortunately, they’re not financing businesses, not financing the items that enhance economic figures, not hiring people or buying new machinery.

Everything’s operating at less than full capacity, and with so many Americans unable to pay other Americans to give them goods or services, Those offering the goods and services are suffering bad business as a result.

So, your plan is to make everybody just as poor as one another, and somehow this will improve the economy.

Good heavens am I sick of this BS. Do you folks have any other solution to fiscal problems, to general issues of government? The one way to tell that somebody is not putting much thought into their solution is when they claim it to be a universal cure. Republicans do this for everything from bungling a disaster recovery operation, to solving unemployment, to dealing with a catastrophic blowout in the gulf. Reducing government is always the first thing that comes to mind, and it reflect the dullness and desperation of Republican ideologues.

Same thing with taxes. That’s the only solution that Republicans offer, and the facts show, it’s not much of a solution. They have never managed to create the economic booms they promise, Instead, we just see massive deficits arise. They spend on wars, they spend on drug benefits to get the seniors on their side, but never mind asking them to raise taxes or offset other spending in order to do this. It’s just not done. Why? Because Republicans have this wierd theory that they can force limited government on everybody by running huge deficits instead of paying for things. They call it starving the beast. And since Republicans started using this approach, the national debt has skyrocketed, mostly under their own leaders.

It does not matter what you intend to do, what you intend to happen. The logic of reality trumps the logic of politics every time. When you lower taxes, you lower revenues. When you lower revenues, but don’t have surpluses to absorb revenue losses, you start running deficits. When you make huge tax cuts, cutting trillions of dollars of revenue out, and then turn around and spend trillions on a war, and then trillions on a drug benefit, not even bothering to put a provisions in place for the government to bargain prices down, You WILL run record deficits.

And because you can’t just stop a war, or a federal program like that midway, your successor will end up having to spend a lot out of deficit too. Obama could veto new spending on the wars, end them precipitously, and save hundreds of billions. He could push through an abolition of all those new programs the Bush Administration pushed through. And then we could watch those areas collapse, and our soldiers get killed as the forces dwindled without a real plan. We’d watch seniors overnight become destitute as the costs of drugs overwhelmed them.

As with many radicals, the Republicans are unwilling to consider the consequences of what they ask in serious fashion. They have a fixed, non-adaptive sense of what is right, and even as things go wrong on account of their inappropriate actions, they do not change.

What we need in terms of policy is not that kind of ideological paralysis of thought, but people who are genuinely responsive to what’s actually going on around them, and not hamstrung in their ability to offer and implement solutions by politics.

All the Republicans can offer people is just more of the same stubborn unwillingness to change in the face of outcomes contrary to expectations.

When the Republicans quit trying to be unquestionable Gods up there in Washington, when the recognize that they are citizens equal to both any Democrat or any other American, then they’ll get better.

For the time being though, we are likely to only see more egotistical refusal to let anybody, themselves or the Democrats, try anything new to answer the problems of failed policy.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 25, 2010 9:59 PM
Comment #309252

I had a really hard time reading that post, Stephen Daugherty. In fact it was so hard to read, I did not finish reading it.

I regret my ignorance, but I cannot submit to an insult and then consider your point of view. I would be arrogant to think I could expect the same of you!

Perhaps to word your arguement differently would gain more fruit.

Henry Schlatman, do you agree?

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2010 10:27 PM
Comment #309254

Weary Willie-
Let me put it shortly for you: it is a stupid idea. Not a stupid person who offers it, but a stupid idea.

If your solution to the economic crisis is to reduce employment, reduce wages further, you are compounding the problem at the heart of our economic downturn- namely that people don’t have the economic resources they once did to spend and drive the economy through consumption.

Republicans keep going back to the same ideas, again and again, finding every reason not to admit that their ideas failed, not dissociating themselves from that foolishness. I can understand the impulse. But I counsel them to let go of these ideas and rethink the expression of their basic political principles in the context of both their beliefs, and the real circumstances I hope they are moderating their beliefs to deal with.

I have the patience to hold back on harsh words directed at people, but these policies do not deserve the sugarcoating of the disgust I have with them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 25, 2010 10:34 PM
Comment #309256

Stephen Daugherty, would you be offended if I insisted you subject yourself to my point of view?
Maybe Watchblog should consider taking the position, “Stephen Daugherty’s employment is a stupid idea!”

Do you think anyone would listen to me if all I had to say is “It’s a stupid Idea!”?

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2010 11:20 PM
Comment #309257

Stephen,

See? It does no good. You can explain something in more than a hundred words, and they will whine that they cannot keep up. Then you condense, and they whine because you are too terse. Just whining about what our President is doing, just whining about corporate America not having enough freedom to operate, just whining about being taxed, just whining about what is being said about they way they whine, just whining about the way it is being said…nothing constructive, just more whining.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 6:41 AM
Comment #309259

What is frightening about this debate is the refusal of conservatives to even address the structural problems of our economy that are the root cause of the deficits and unemployment. It is as though the collapse of the capital financial markets in 2008 and the consequent Great Recession were a minor blip on the radar. It is as though middle class wage stagnation and unsustainable private indebtedness are insignificant concerns. It is as though the loss of manufacturing jobs, the outsourcing of production and servicing by US corporations and lack of capital investment by US corporations in the US are just some labor union propaganda.

In my opinion, since the advent of unfettered conservative neo-liberal free market policies and globilization, the US has been engaged in a world economic war and we are losing. As Stephen Daugherty has noted, we have gone from the greatest creditor nation to the greatest debtor nation. Our balance of trade has consistently deteriorated. China has captured our manufacturing base with the willing cooperation of our large corporations. China, practicing state capitalism, has been much more successful in adapting to economic circumstances. In this world recession, China employed a stimulus package more than twice the size of ours and directed its state controlled banks to expand credit. As a consequence, China has maintained a strong and growing economy while the US is stagnant with high unemployment.

Liberals may not have all the answers to our economic problems, but at least they are not entirely blind to the reality. On the other hand, conservatives appear not only blind to the reality but insistent that their ideology could never result in such negative outcomes. This is apparent in conservative argument explaining the Bush era failures: Bush and the Repubican Congress weren’t really conservatives. It also explains the Tea Party purging of the Republican party. If we could only get some true conservatives to run this country.


Posted by: Rich at September 26, 2010 9:05 AM
Comment #309260

Weary Willie,
RF and you will have to excuse my uncivilized behavoir; however, if you think that I am bab now you should of been around in the 1970’s when I was My Elders and Powers-that-Be about their ideology. And for those who wondered why I stopped with Rf it is not because he is politically wrong in theory; nevertheless, as a Child of the 70’s I’m not going to allow him the easy way out and say the Youth of the 60’s and Silver Spoons of the 70’s are going to have to concede that they cannot leave the Children of the 21st Century with a Better World. Nor if I can help it will I allow Americas’ Democratic and Republican Civil, Political, and Religious Leaders take the same position.

For Stephen, you say it is “Stupid” for Americans to deccrease the Federal Workers pay, but offer no rational explainaion or logical reason on why we need to protect their pay scale. Because although reducing their pay will not help reduce the debt unless we do something about those leaving government for better paying jobs in the private sector than we are in a sense wasting good money. So RF should have expanded his comments IMHO to include the pay structure of both Private and Public Employees. Since although I disagree with many of the conditions and ethics on both sides, I do see a huge gap of unequality that should be addressed.

Now Weary Willie, I am glad to see more and more Americans taking advantages of renewable energy production as an income which cannot only help all of America, but protect themselves from the up and downs of the market. Nevertheless, one of my major concerns is how can the Urbanites enjoy the same thing when their living space is limited? Certainly the idea of having 8 million power stations in New York City would create its own nightmare wouldn’t it?

No, wages are not the problem Americas’ Democratic and Republican Leadership faces and why Bill Gates and Warren Buffet makes some excellent points about parents leaving their wealth to their children. If no one can or wants to pay taxes for an effective government and society than how are we going to be able to purchase the equippment and products of the 21st Century so we may continue the legacy of leaving the next generation with a Better World.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 26, 2010 9:23 AM
Comment #309261

As I sit here watching meet the press and listen to Mike Pence all I here is blah blah blah tax cuts blsh blah blah. WHAT A BOOB.

Posted by: Jeff at September 26, 2010 9:23 AM
Comment #309262

Rich,

And it can only get worse:

Nearly 100 pastors across the country planned to take part in Pulpit Freedom Sunday, an in-your-face challenge Sunday to what the government says can and cannot be said in church.

This Sunday, 100 U.S. pastors, including seven from Tennessee, will stand before their congregations and break the law, on purpose.

The pastors, along with the Scottsdale, Ariz.-based nonprofit Alliance Defense Fund, are reacting to a law stating that churches are not allowed to support politicians from the pulpit, according to the ADF.

The growing trend is a challenge to the IRS from the churches, and may jeopardize their all-important tax-exempt status. But some pastors and church leaders said they are willing to defy the law to defending their right to freedom of speech.

If the IRS loses, and those churches retain their tax exempt status, you and I will be sponsoring the downfall of America as we have known it and loved it. Conservatives will only be satisfied when they own us, lock, stock and barrel. And, after they do own us, they’ll spit us out like grape pits. What the masses of conservatives don’t seem to realize is that the ones controlling their puppet strings will then spit THEM out as well. We will have returned to the good ol’ days, the days conservatives have been pining for…the days of a few robber barons and the abject poor.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 9:41 AM
Comment #309264

(CBS) A number of you have contacted us in response to what Ben Stein had to say about the prospect of higher taxes last week … including Linda McGibney, a Supervising Producer and Writer for the show “Stargate Universe” on the SyFy Channel. She had some things of her own to say:


BEN STEIN: “Maybe when the economy recovers, raising my taxes makes sense, but for now, it’s just punishment, and I can’t figure out what for.”

All I have to say is, Ben Stein is wrong.

I am an American. I am in the highest tax bracket. I also work in entertainment - which is what Mr. Stein does as well.

I am fine with the tax increase. I think it patriotic that I am taxed in this way. I want to help my country.

I believe the fact that I can have a job this year, and hopefully every year to come, is a privilege.

Ben Stein: Raising My Taxes Is a Punishment

Mr. Stein, there are Americans who qualify for this tax increase under the proposed plan who don’t feel “punished” by it. We feel it is our duty in hard times to help the rest of America.

And I am not talking about charity; this isn’t charity. We both give to charity, of our own choosing. Mr. Stein probably gives more than me.

This is about being a grown-up and accepting the fact that we made money during the bogus up-tick in the economy. We prospered. So did others in our ranks. A LOT.

Can I say A LOT one more time?

Now, it’s time to help the rest of America.

I don’t care how many dogs and cats you adopt, how many people you give a paycheck to, or how many dollars you make.

If Ben Stein believes this tax increase is a punishment, then he is out of touch with the average person.

I suppose he thinks he’s beyond sharing his good fortune with the rest of the Americans who are suffering financially. Or he just doesn’t care about them.

Being an American is understanding you are lucky to be so. And you and I, Mr. Stein, are extremely lucky to be paid for a subjective asset: Our talent.

I have always understood that the “haves” were greedy. This is the first time I’ve heard one of them express it out loud so openly.

I am a “have.” I am willing to pay this tax increase. I’m not going to whine about it. I won’t feel punished. I will understand it’s the cost of doing business.

It is worth sacrificing because our country needs some of us to sacrifice … the some of us who can.

And, Mr. Stein, we are not suffering

Posted by: Jeff at September 26, 2010 10:22 AM
Comment #309265

Marysdude,

The wedding of political conservatism and fundamentalist religions explains much of conservative rigidity toward policy self-examination and knee jerk rejection of anything proposed by “liberals.” After all, those who have achieved ultimate enlightenment cannot be wrong. Those who have not accepted the enlightenment cannot possibly be right.

Posted by: Rich at September 26, 2010 10:28 AM
Comment #309266

Rich,

I’ve been looking at it from another view lately.

There is no way in hell for a conservative agenda to ‘win’ an election in America, in these austere times…unless the deck is stacked. To stack the deck, they ask SCOTUS to find in favor of corporations (for money) in Citizens United, and they ask church pastors who honestly believe the conservatives are more Christ-like (for mass votes) to come to their aid. I don’t think normal folks can fight against all that. Something needs to come along to re-level the field.

If we can convince Congress to pass serious electioneering laws to keep corporate money at bay, and the IRS to find that liberals should not have to pay for their own demise by way of a church/state fiasco, the field may end up more in perspective to real America. Until then…good luck surviving this crap.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 10:57 AM
Comment #309267

Jeff,
I do believe Ben Stein forgot one thing about being an American. If He don’t want to pay the higher taxes, he does have the right to refuse to be paid. Beside if his accountant does it right he can even donate the tax credit as well.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 26, 2010 11:45 AM
Comment #309268

Dude:

We will have returned to the good ol’ days, the days conservatives have been pining for…the days of a few robber barons and the abject poor.

We’re already there, Dude. Not many people heard about it at the time, but you should check out this news that broke a year ago.

Rich,
I agree. Rigidity. And obviously ignorance plays a major role, too.

Posted by: Adrienne at September 26, 2010 11:49 AM
Comment #309270

Weary Willie-
When I say something is a stupid idea, I make a claim by doing so. I gave reasons for my claim: that to take out our frustrations on federal workers would mean that their contributions to the ecnomy would diminish with everybody else’s, and that we would all suffer for this.

Yes, you are free to call what I propose a stupid idea. But, like me, you should back up your claim with some kind of logic and evidence.

It should not be enough to simply state a claim. We must argue that claim’s supporting premises too. Otherwise, your criticism would be just.

Beyond that, let me speak to your other point: as much as we would like it, nobody else is under obligation to consider our point of view. I don’t expect you to look at the world from my perspective. If you want others to consider what you think, you must first express it in a form that enables them to understand your perspective.

If you don’t do a good enough job, or if there is simply a legitimate, irreconcilable difference of opinion, the person will be able to say, that’s just what he thinks.

Otherwise, though, you will have gone a good distance towards cultivating other people’s sharing of your opinion.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 26, 2010 12:23 PM
Comment #309271

Adrienne,

Yeah, it is no longer a matter of when the rich get all the nickles, it is now a matter of which rich ends up with it before their game ends. Conservatives perpetuate the game with a power play of their own, not realizing the role they ultimately contribute is the end game itself.

I’d say, “What a bunch of losers”, if it weren’t so obvious that we are all in the same game. Liberal contributions are in the weakness with which we approach governance. It does us no good to know the way, if we can’t show the way.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 1:01 PM
Comment #309276

Mr. daugherty wrote; “So, your plan is to make everybody just as poor as one another, and somehow this will improve the economy.”

From this comment it is obvious that Mr. Daugerty didn’t read, or didn’t comprehend and doesn’t know how to respond to what I wrote. The “plan” to make everybody poor is the exclusive property of the libersocialists. I wrote that government employees pay and benefits are a large part of the reason both the states and federal governement are so deep in debt.

Weary Willie wrote; “I had a really hard time reading that post, Stephen Daugherty. In fact it was so hard to read, I did not finish reading it.”

I agree Willie, I couldn’t finish reading that blather either.

“If we can convince Congress to pass serious electioneering laws to keep corporate money at bay, and the IRS to find that liberals should not have to pay for their own demise by way of a church/state fiasco, the field may end up more in perspective to real America. Until then…good luck surviving this crap.”

Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010

What an interesting and revealing comment, especially the words that I changed to bold. From this remark one must conclude that dude doesn’t believe that any liberals are church goers. Interesting, very interesting.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 26, 2010 4:41 PM
Comment #309281

>From this remark one must conclude that dude doesn’t believe that any liberals are church goers. Interesting, very interesting.
Posted by: Royal Flush at September 26, 2010 04:41 PM

That may very well be the stupidest statement I’ve ever seen on WB.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 6:03 PM
Comment #309282

Adrienne,

Thank you for the link. It was a very interesting study not simply for the finding that most Americans vastly underestimate wealth inequality in the US but for the finding that “All demographic groups – even those not usually associated with wealth redistribution such as Republicans and the wealthy – desired a more equal distribution of wealth than the status quo.” http://www.people.hbs.edu/mnorton/norton%20ariely%20in%20press.pdf

Posted by: Rich at September 26, 2010 6:27 PM
Comment #309285

That may very well be the stupidest statement I’ve ever seen on WB.
Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010

Really…care to explain then what you meant by the statement I highlighted? If one doesn’t wish to appear ignorant they should be competent to explain what they wrote rather than just write a snide remark.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 26, 2010 6:47 PM
Comment #309293

RF,

For starters, what in the world does the separation of church and state have to do with whether liberals go to church or not. Liberals may have more to lose if Christian fundamentalists take over our government, because we believe more in individual freedom than conservatives do, but going to church has little to do with not wanting that to happen. Preachers, like those who are rebelling against the IRS, yet desire tax exemption are more conservative, but that stands to reason, as they do not want their flock to be individuals, or to have ideas or thoughts.

Now you’re on your own, as I have no desire to teach you to read.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 9:39 PM
Comment #309294

PS:

Marysdude said snidely…

Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 9:40 PM
Comment #309348
Republicans have now issued a manifesto that says that if they get a majority in Congress, they will reduce the deficit and reduce the government through spending cuts.
Posted by Paul Siegel at September 24, 2010 06:00 PM

Paul Siegel goes on to say, I paraphrase:

Democratic party starts with a D and so does Democracy. Democratic Party good.
Republican party starts with a R and so does Rich. Republican Party bad!

Next gergle demonstrates his literary brilliance by refering to “It” being “Math for Morons.”

I’m not sure if he was criticizing Paul Siegel’s post, but I asume so.

Henry Schlatman talks sense and Stephen Daugherty insults.

Rich may be projecting and jane doe deflects with raw data.

Because I believe I have as much clairvoyance as Beretta I will now predict the conservative apologist, should they respond at all, will try to hijack this post with nonsensical talking points to turn the subject away from Boehner’s “promise” to America.
Posted by: j2t2 at September 24, 2010 10:52 PM

j2t2 predicts conservatives will hijact this post….


It is kind of horrifying, though, to watch the conservative Republicans circle around the country like vultures, ready to finish the job and kill the economy. They’re going to try to finish off the country once and for all: redistribute the wealth to the rich and large corporations, destroy the middle class, subject the working poor and just plain poor to endless penury, and end all attempts to implement social justice. The amazing thing is that social conservatives are so blinded by racism and homophobia, they are more than willing to follow Limbuagh and the other voices of hate and destroy their perceived enemies even if it means destroying themselves.

Posted by: phx8 at September 25, 2010 01:36 AM

The reason I devoted this much effort in phx8’s comment is to point out the drama it projects and compare it to the substance it reflects.

Henry Schlatman, keep up the good fight.

Stephen Daugherty,
We can

just


scroll

down


to…


Posted by: LibRick at September 25, 2010 10:28 AM

Wow. Just wow. If the lack of responses to this post by conservatives is any indication, the Democrats do indeed have a chance to hold the House and Senate.

At least LibRick is an optimist. Good luck with that, LibRick.

And we’re back with Paul Krugman, thanks to Taylor.

My questin for Henry is simple. With our national and many state governments deeply in debt and some near bankruptcy why would you wish to force this same financial nightmare on our private sector that pays all the bills.
Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2010 12:45 PM


That’s a good question and one we should expect Henry Schlatman and Royal Flush to come back to. It does not “hijact” the post.


Marysdude volunteers another item of raw data.


Royal Flush and Phx8 attempt a dialog until Phx8 attempts to “hijack” the discussion by using non-existant extrapolations that can’t relate to the discussion.

Royal Flush,
By the way, there can be no successful capitalism or free market without government regulation and oversight? If you disagree, consider the real life situations where no government or regulation exists, such as Somalia.

Posted by: phx8 at September 25, 2010 01:57 PM

Marysdude volunteers the same item of raw data again.


You say something to the effect that it would be so much better if federal employees felt the effects of the recession just as much as everybody else.
Damn, is that a stupid idea.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 25, 2010 09:59 PM

Scroll down….


to…

Stephen, See? It does no good. You can explain something in more than a hundred words, and they will whine that they cannot keep up. Then you condense, and they whine because you are too terse. Just whining about what our President is doing, just whining about corporate America not having enough freedom to operate, just whining about being taxed, just whining about what is being said about they way they whine, just whining about the way it is being said…nothing constructive, just more whining.
Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 06:41 AM


What is frightening about this debate is the refusal of conservatives to even address the structural problems of our economy that are the root cause of the deficits and unemployment.

Posted by: Rich at September 26, 2010 09:05 AM


And for those who wondered why I stopped with Rf it is not because he is politically wrong in theory

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at September 26, 2010 09:23 AM


Thanks for that, Henry:)

Let’s get back to the point.

As I sit here watching meet the press and listen to Mike Pence all I here is blah blah blah tax cuts blsh blah blah. WHAT A BOOB.
Posted by: Jeff at September 26, 2010 09:23 AM

.www.watchblog.com/democrats/archives/007237.html#309262
Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 09:41 AM

Yes, you are free to call what I propose a stupid idea.
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 26, 2010 12:23 PM

Stephen Daugherty, You said it was a stupid idea.

You say something to the effect that it would be so much better if federal employees felt the effects of the recession just as much as everybody else. Damn, is that a stupid idea.

scroll


down


Where were we?



I’ve been looking at it from another view lately.
There is no way in hell for a conservative agenda to ‘win’ an election in America, in these austere times…unless the deck is stacked. To stack the deck, they ask SCOTUS to find in favor of corporations (for money) in Citizens United, and they ask church pastors who honestly believe the conservatives are more Christ-like (for mass votes) to come to their aid. I don’t think normal folks can fight against all that. Something needs to come along to re-level the field.
If we can convince Congress to pass serious electioneering laws to keep corporate money at bay, and the IRS to find that liberals should not have to pay for their own demise by way of a church/state fiasco, the field may end up more in perspective to real America. Until then…good luck surviving this crap.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 26, 2010 10:57 AM

Finally. This is where the post is currently being hijacked. The hijacker is not a conservative. j2t2, your prediction is wrong.

The hijacker is Marysdude. His post clearly injects religion into a subject not yet mentioned. Marysdude, you’re right! It’s George Bush’s fault.

Posted by: Weary Willie said snidely at September 27, 2010 9:47 PM
Comment #309349

WW, what a phenomenal waste of time……at least, ours!

Posted by: jane doe at September 27, 2010 11:09 PM
Comment #309356

>The hijacker is Marysdude. His post clearly injects religion into a subject not yet mentioned. Marysdude, you’re right! It’s George Bush’s fault.
Posted by: Weary Willie said snidely at September 27, 2010 09:47 PM

What a scurrilous assault.

Entry 309262 brought in a picture of posturing pastors attempting to circumvent the church/state separation in order to influence election outcomes. That’s politics at its worst. Your diatribe is nonsense and useless because you learned to ‘cut and paste’, but did not learn to read. One step at a time from now on…okay? Snide only works when you are right about something. Your entry does not qualify.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 28, 2010 8:55 AM
Comment #309380

Royal Flush-

From this comment it is obvious that Mr. Daugerty didn’t read, or didn’t comprehend and doesn’t know how to respond to what I wrote.

Hell of a lot to read from one comment. ;-)

I don’t see how that’s not a very concise presentation of the problem: since a lot of this spending isn’t spending people are immediately paying for, it’s not a zero sum matter. Folks will not get back the money that doesn’t get paid to Federal workers. In the meantime, they’re poorer, so their contribution to the economy suffers as well.

The “plan” to make everybody poor is the exclusive property of the libersocialists.

I did not know that. I’m glad you alerted me to this fact. I’ll have to reconsider everything I’ve ever thought.

Seriously, though, Democrats constantly fight for things like a higher minimum wage, like better union representation, like research and development and infrastructure projects. We fight for a policy that raises efficiency in cars so that people don’t have to dump their wallets into their gas tanks, and Detroit can make cars people will actually buy when the gas prices go higher.

So, your talk is just complete bull****, rhetoric that’s mutated to the status of fact because you folks repeat it to yourselves and don’t listen to anybody who thinks differently. We do our best to put more money in the average American’s pocket.

As for not finishing reading the comment?

Funny, I can typically finish Republican posts, no matter how appalling I find them. I do that so I know what to respond to. Evidently, you don’t have to know what you’re responding to because you have that strawman of libersocialmarxism to beat up on. No need to prepare against an opponent whose words you’ve already put in their mouths.

As for the separation of Church and State? Generally, when religions become involved in politics, the weight of the worldliness of politics overwhelms the bouyancy of virtue in the churches. It’s a lot harder to get people to come to Christ when you put the stumbling block of earthly political divisions between you and them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 28, 2010 5:07 PM
Comment #309410

>The “plan” to make everybody poor is the exclusive property of the libersocialists.

RF,

I think you are right for once. The plan was hatched up by the second shooter (Grassy Knoll), and has been in the platform of the Democratic (Marxist/Socialistic/German National Socialistic/Nazis) Party. It is to be carried out by Aliens who landed at Area 51.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 28, 2010 10:46 PM
Comment #309411

PS:

Marysdude said sarcastically…

Posted by: Marysdude at September 28, 2010 10:48 PM
Comment #309416

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at September 25, 2010 10:07 AM


Weary Willie
Resurgent Republicans is more like it. The polling outfit is even worse than Rasmussen. Rasmussen doesn’t basically say on its own site that it’s about shaping the debate towards the Republicans.

What are you saying, Stephen Daugherty? Are you saying Rasmussen is bias? And then comparing the Resurgent Republic to your opinion of Rasmussen?

Resurgent Republic is a 501(c)(4) organization dedicated to shaping the debate over the proper role of government. It is an independent, not-for-profit organization modeled on Democracy Corps, which has made important contributions to the public debate from the left and has proven to be a valuable resource for labor unions, environmentalists, and liberal Congressional leaders.
Resurgent Republic seeks to replicate on the right the success Democracy Corps has enjoyed on the left. As does Democracy Corps, Resurgent Republic will make survey and focus group results publicly available.


Which is it, Stephen Daugherty? Does the Resurgent Republic polls carry the same weight as the Democracy Corps polls?

As does Democracy Corps, Resurgent Republic will make survey and focus group results publicly available.
Weary Willie Resurgent Republicans is more like it.

You’ve criticize them yet you compare them to what you consider successful!
At least you could wait to analize the data accumulated by both before you start name calling. Or is that against the playbook rules?


But let’s cut to the chase: a few percentage points raise and better benefits are nothing

You do listen to yourself, don’t you, Stephen Daugherty?


compared to the 10% per year pay increases that CEOs and executives enjoyed during the Bush years,

Ok! It’s Bush’s fault! You and Marysdude can say you’re the majority!


…and they

I assume you are refering to the CEOs and executives…

have a hell of a lot

I’m also assuming that is Texan for “have much”

more to do with why people are comparatively less well off in the private sector than the good wages of federal workers.
If we’re going to be envious of somebody, if we’re going to engage in class warfare, why don’t we do so with the folks who are actually responsible for setting pay and benefits for their workers.

As for the Pledge? The Pledge is a joke. It essentially says, “we’re coming back, and we’re not going to do a damn thing different.” And why a pledge? Why not another contract? Why the weaker word?


Why the weaker arguement, Stephen Daugherty?


Are Republicans afraid their base might actually hold them to it?

Stephen Daugherty, you haven’t a clue what the Republican base will do.

Like Krugman said in the quotes above,

Dagnabit, we’re back to Krugman!?

not only are the Republicans bound to increase the deficit with their proposals, they can’t even hope to protect all they say they will protect and actually make the offsets to pay for the tax cuts.

What makes you think you know what this Republican Party will do, Stephen Daugherty?

The Republicans aren’t interested in constructive policy. They’re interested in keeping and gaining power for their own sake, and they’ll say anything right now to get it back from the Democrats.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 25, 2010 10:07 AM

Stephen Daugherty, you just wrote your own party’s epitaph.

Your party is the same party it always was! Now, It’s in it’s dangerous stage.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 29, 2010 12:18 AM
Comment #309425

WW,

When was the last time someone in the left column used a poll created by Democracy Corps? When was the last time someone used a poll by Resurgent Republicans? Nuf said.

Posted by: Marysdude at September 29, 2010 6:40 AM
Comment #309703

The last time someone in this column used the Resergent Republic and the Democracy Corps was Stephen Daugherty, in this post.

Tell Nuf Stephen Daugherty was the last to use Democracy Corps, Marysdude. Tell Nuf Stephen Daugherty referenced them both, in this post.

Resurgent Republic seeks to replicate on the right the success Democracy Corps has enjoyed on the left. As does Democracy Corps, Resurgent Republic will make survey and focus group results publicly available.
The “plan” to make everybody poor is the exclusive property of the libersocialists. I wrote that government employees pay and benefits are a large part of the reason both the states and federal governement are so deep in debt.
Posted by Royal Flush at September 26, 2010 04:41 PM

I always thought the goal was to eventually convict everyone of a felony. A felon cannot vote. The government is writing laws to convict felons. Rich felons would be at the mercy of the govenrment.

Even if you’re tried for a State crime and freed, you are still at the mercy of the federal government. The federal government thinks it can put you on trial for the same offense because they put the incident in a different class. They just write law after law to create felons. Felons that can’t vote.

Double Jepordy is being ignored in this country, Alex Trebek. Don’t make fun of the term. The answer is “The U.S. Constitution”.

Posted by: Weary Willie at October 4, 2010 10:25 PM
Comment #348998

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