Democrats & Liberals Archives

The Only Way To Win This Game Is Not To Play

This is like holding a gun to somebody’s head, and then putting your own head on their opposite shoulder. Sure, you can blow your hostage away, but you will blow your own brains out, too.

The Republicans will lose because they decided to hold something hostage they could not afford to kill: The American economy.

Virtually every bond rating company out there has said that this debt ceiling must be raised. The Chinese, our biggest creditors, say it must be raised. Wall Street, by all reports has found consensus around the need to raise the debt ceiling.

Failing to raise the debt limit is not setting a goal not to spend. That opportunity was in the showdown before that one! Congress has already said that we are going to spend this money. That does include many of the Republicans you know and love.

This is about authorizing the Treasury to raise money from our creditors to give us the cash we will use to pay off all the people we've budgeted payments to. If we don't do it, America becomes a deadbeat nation to the tune of the amount of the bills we don't have the revenue to pay.

For two hundred years, America has paid its debt, through all its depressions (including the great one), all its wars, and all of its more prosperous times. If we pay our debts even in the time of our greatest need, even after a World War that put us in a similar position with our debt. Through liberal and conservative times nobody has dared to grab this dragon by the tail, and with good reason.

You don't need theory to know what's going to happen, you just need need a calculator.

There isn't enough money to go around. So, instantly, about a 136 billion dollars worth of creditors must be stiffed. Once they are stiffed, then America has forever sullied its reputation for paying its bills on time.

Oh, they might lend us money, but we'll pay higher interest rates, and that will claw back money from our economy it desperately needs. Additionally, the international trust in our dollar will go down, and many companies may be forced to pull back money from Treasury securities.

Investing money in America will not gradually become unfashionable, it will become instantly more unreliable, and every business on the face of the planet will feel the impact of this default. What happens when the wealthiest country in the world declares bankruptcy?

This is the alternative the Republicans have to raising the debt ceiling.

America worked its way past the debt that it accumulated in the course of fighting World War II. The taxes were raised the cuts were made. Everybody did their best to tame the economy, and turn its course towards growth. Memories of the Great Depression were fresh, so nobody wanted to have a repeat. It works well when folks aren't fearless in the face of prospects they should truly be frightened of. It's not said that discretion is the better part of valor for nothing, because there are some points where fear is a useful guide to moderating your behavior, inhibiting the impulses that would otherwise lead you into trouble.

The Republican's problem is that they have decided to play a game where calling the other side's bluff and letting the debt authority remain unchanged will be a disaster. Some scoff at this, because they believe that any Democrat's warning about something bad happening is just a scare tactic. But it's not a scare tactic, it's a mathematical reality that has scary implications.

The position this puts the Republicans in is that they've got a gun to their head at the same time they've got a gun to everybody else's, and if they pull the trigger, they get shot, too. They go down with everybody else. And if they pull the trigger, if they actually do it, then the question will be asked of them: who can trust this party, which willingly marched this nation into an unnecessary, politically motivated default to govern wisely?

I mean, who can trust them now? In their desperation to overcome the mismatch of political power that remains, with a Democrat holding the White House, and his party controlling the Senate, they have sought out what they must have thought would be the ultimate weapon to force their agenda on the rest of the government with, and undo the imbalance they so hate.

So what do we get out of that? Hastily considered policy, that's what. We're making monumental changes to our budget, and our way of life without even taking the time to consider the way things really stand in the world as it is.

There's a point to this slow, frustrating, adversarial system that the framers gave to us: it forces people to agree on what is in the general interest to get anything done. It allows for a more gradual and rationally considered policy to develop and become the norm, rather than destabilizing changes. It encourages cleverness and a willingness to compromise, because those who don't learn those qualities end up creating much resistance to their efforts, and fail to sap the strength of that opposition by horse-trading the necessary concessions to get what they want. Those who complain that this creates impure policies forget that this is a feature, not simply a bug of the system.

In other words, despite the way it can sometime encourage corruption, water down legislation that needs to be stronger, it does force a broader consideration of the needs and desires of the public, than just the constituent of the representative. Interest pits itself against interest, faction against faction, and much of the time, in our form of government, the results depend not upon the victors alone, but the emergent compromise between them.

The problem for the Republicans is that they put themselves in a position where the strongest position, and the easiest position to support are one and the same, where if the other side decided to balk at the demands of their adversaries, their adversaries would not be able to call the bluff without causing significant political destruction to themselves. In essence, they wanted this to be a mugging, and it turns into a Mexican standoff, like out of a Tony Scott movie. The only way to win in this kind of situation is not to play. There will be a political price to pay for whatever humiliating concession they make, but there will be an even bigger and broader price to pay if they fail to pass a debt ceiling increase.

If a debt ceiling default does occur, then it will owe to a political, not a financial failure, an unwillingness to find the money to pay for something, not the inability to raise the money. While I agree that we need to reduced the debt and the deficits, I believe that a big part of that will be ending the practices that got us into this situation in the first place. In the meantime, though, America has the economic strength to pay its debts, and as such, it should pay those debts. America should uphold its financial reputation as the safest nation, credit-wise, in the world. The dollar should remain a world currency, the Treasury Bond a haven for money people want kept safe.

No self-serving party should have ever had the stupidity to take us so close to a loss of financial faith and credit of that magnitude. No party's agenda is worth such a confrontation, and no party that succeeds in forcing its will by such methods has truly won the debate. In fact, really, you have to have lost the debate, in a real sense, if you cannot achieve the cuts you want except by putting our nation's credit and economy in danger.

The Republicans already lost by hurtling themselves towards such ideologically extreme methods. They need not make their loss our nation's loss and ruin.

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at July 15, 2011 11:01 PM
Comments
Comment #325828

Nice speech. Unfortunately, Fox News will just spin the disaster as Obama’s fault. If 30% of Americans can believe Obama was born in Kenya then they’ll believe anything.

Posted by: Aldous at July 16, 2011 1:30 AM
Comment #325831

The Republicans aren’t any more guilty of holding the economy hostage than the Democrats are. The runaway spending has GOT to stop.

The Democrats can compromise with the Republicans as good as the Republicans can compromise with the Democrats.

The only way to stop the rising debt is to have a showdown. Now is as good a time as any.

Posted by: tdobson at July 16, 2011 8:03 AM
Comment #325832

Aldous-
The effects of the debt ceiling are going to be like a slap in the face to most Fox Viewers, just like the crash was. They might recover over time, but that’s only if the corporate structure of Fox survives the worst depression since the Great one.

tdobson-
You were played by your politicians. They wanted an issue they could distract people with, so they picked debt and deficit, even though one of the many reasons why the constitution allows the Congress to take out debt is to whether economic hard times such as this, with government services intact.

They needed to distract people because they had already made a terrible mistake before the 2008 election, trying this very same sort of gambit, to try and demonstrate that they were true blue conservatives. The result was that the first bailout bill failed, and having failed, confidence that the banks would survive failed with it, sending the economy into a deeper tailspin.

We don’t need to repeat that mistake. We don’t need any more showdowns. We need the economy and the government to work to the average American’s benefit.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 16, 2011 8:32 AM
Comment #325834

tdobson-

The only way to stop the rising debt is to have a showdown. Now is as good a time as any.

No, the timing couldn’t be worse. We carry an immense amount of debt, which means that there’s a hell of a lot that our nation will have to pay off at a higher rate.

Our government’s deficits means that adjusting to not having money to pay things off will mean severe budget cuts, or severe tax hikes. The economy doesn’t need that.

The banks are in no condition to survive the collapse of the dollar.

The very coercive quality of it, the opportunity you see in it to radically change policy, is only there because of the damage it could do to the economy. But really, will the Republican Party survive having forced through political means a needless default?

There are many ways to stop rising debt and deficits, near term and long term. Republicans leaders these days are just not patient enough or wise enough to employ them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 16, 2011 8:41 AM
Comment #325835
The runaway spending has GOT to stop.

Too bad you all didn’t feel that way during the last administration, the one that fought these wars and didn’t hid the costs, the one who added to the medicare costs with no way to pay for it. You all have no legs to stand on in your demands.

Posted by: womanmarine at July 16, 2011 8:49 AM
Comment #325836

Whoops, that should read “and hid the costs”.

Posted by: womanmarine at July 16, 2011 8:50 AM
Comment #325838

I stand by my comments

Posted by: tdobson at July 16, 2011 9:02 AM
Comment #325839

But your standing in a swamp.

Posted by: Jeff at July 16, 2011 9:15 AM
Comment #325840

tdobson-
The problem is that for all the urgency they give you on this subject, the math of your approach doesn’t add up in any way. It’s a fantasy of how to approach it, not a successful strategy.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 16, 2011 9:21 AM
Comment #325841

Stephen said:

“tdobson-
You were played by your politicians. They wanted an issue they could distract people with, so they picked debt and deficit, even though one of the many reasons why the constitution allows the Congress to take out debt is to whether economic hard times such as this, with government services intact.”

“tdobson-
“The only way to stop the rising debt is to have a showdown. Now is as good a time as any.”
“No, the timing couldn’t be worse. We carry an immense amount of debt, which means that there’s a hell of a lot that our nation will have to pay off at a higher rate.”

No Stephen, I agree with tdobson; this is the perfect time to deal with this. We have not been played by our politicians and that is why their switchboards are lit up with calls to not give in to liberals. The democrats have pulled their last bait and switch plan with republicans. This time there will be a real deal, or the republicans will pay a heavy price next year. I know the left loves to say conservatives don’t know what is going on and the price that will be paid, but we do. The president and liberal democrats have continually lied to America. The latest was in Obama’s man speeches yesterday, when he said 80% of the American people want to raise the debt limit and raise taxes. It is a bold faced lie; the latest Gallup poll says a full 50% of Americans want the debt cut. How can anyone believe this “chicken little” the sky is falling, when he is a liar? Nothing will happen on August 2nd, except that the president will be forced to cut funds from the liberal entitlement programs and SS, Medicare, and Medicaid will not be part of it, because he has shot his wad by threatening to do. Americans aren’t stupid, they know who controls the distribution of funds.


By the way, if we don’t get our fiscal house in order, we will still see our economy take a rating hit.

Posted by: Mike at July 16, 2011 9:23 AM
Comment #325842

Stephen,

I learned in combat that the only way to survive an ambush is to assault. In my opinion the American people have been ambushed by the Obama administration. It’s time to assult with overwhelming firepower.

Posted by: tdobson at July 16, 2011 10:12 AM
Comment #325843

tdobson-
I hope you’re speaking figuratively, as a patriotic American. You wouldn’t want to be advocating treason or armed rebellion against the elected government of our Republic.

Mike-
The Republicans can’t force the deal. They still have to get the bill past the Senate and past President.

And don’t take what Obama is saying as a bluff or a threat. The simple mathematics dictates that if you preserve all the things you’re talking about, you can’t run the rest of the federal government. And even that will be seen as a default, because we’re stiffing the people we legally obligated ourselves to pay.

That’s right. Your same heroic Republican-led House okayed a budget that obligates this country to spend the money that they are not keeping the country from raising on the markets. They went and they spent the money. The bill is in the mail, and our creditors and our counterparties want and deserve the money they were promised.

The real bait and switch has always been Republican fiscal policy, which has always been shaped around keeping the burden disproportionately off those who make the most money. It’s always been an elitist set of policies wrapped up in popular hopes and dreams and populist language.

There are so many things that poor and middle class Republicans fight for that odds are they’ll never benefit from. Yet the language speaks as if the money the Republicans are restoring to pocket books will be theirs, and in sheer amounts, this is not the case.

All that time, the laws they support end up taking money out of their pockets, as companies conglomerate to destroy competition, to keep from having to spend money to innovate themselves, or do anything else that might take their nominal profits down.

This BS about the Debt Ceiling not being a problem, or just being a liberal scare tactic is a con, a con perpetrated by desperate leaders in your party who don’t want to admit to you that this is a losing battle, who want you to give enough support to this to get Democrats to concede more.

Obama’s being straight with the people. We can’t afford this default. We can’t afford to put ourselves in this position. More to the point, it is immoral to take this country in this direction, immoral to default on obligations that Congress already placed on this government to pay its creditors and its contractors, its citizens and its employees.

If that is your idea of fiscal conservatism, then fiscal conservatism is dead, because no true fiscal conservative would **** with this dangerous of a situation. Do we have to have another collapse in 2008 for your people to admit error? Do we have to have another painful lesson in just how incompetent Republicans are at running a nation?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 16, 2011 10:32 AM
Comment #325844

If Cap, Cut, and balances with the raiseing of the debt ceiling with the same amount of cuts in spending gets to the Senate after the house vote this Wednesday and ole Harry holds it up or Democrats get stupid and vote against it It will be your parties fault Stephen.

Posted by: KAP at July 16, 2011 11:00 AM
Comment #325846

SD

“This is about authorizing the Treasury to raise money from our creditors to give us the cash we will use to pay off all the people we’ve budgeted payments to. If we don’t do it, America becomes a deadbeat nation to the tune of the amount of the bills we don’t have the revenue to pay.”

We have been doing that for decades and it does not work. Look at the continued mess we are in and with your advice we will be digging a deeper hole. We need to quit digging.

Once again you blame some people but not all the people responsible. You don’t once mention the democrats that have helped dig this hole. Why can’t you be honest for a change and blame the correct people instead of lifting the rug while your Hoover dumps it load.

Posted by: tom humes at July 16, 2011 11:18 AM
Comment #325847


Kap, you are right and that is what we are talking about. The Republicans want those cuts and Democrats are willing, but they want something in return. Absolutely not, say Republicans, no compromising.

So here is what is likely to happen, there will be enough Republican votes, in the House, to pass the debt ceiling without any deal on cuts or increased revenue. Unless you think the rest of the Republicans are willing to go along with the tea partiers and stake their chances on forcing the country into default. Keep in mind that there are a lot of Republicans and a majority of independents that are not nearly as incalcitrant as the tea party.

Posted by: jlw at July 16, 2011 12:40 PM
Comment #325848

jlw


“Kap, you are right and that is what we are talking about. The Republicans want those cuts and Democrats are willing, but they want something in return. Absolutely not, say Republicans, no compromising.”


the compromise is the raising of the debt ceiling in return for the cuts. raising taxes and eliminating depreciation of assets on private jets will not increase revenue, but it will help to decrease economic activity. the only permanent way to increase revenue is to increase economic activity. obama talks out of both sides of his face. he talks about helping business while behind the scenes his EPA head works to destroy the coal industry. he talks a good game, but his actions speak the loudest. what will happen when coal fired plants are forced to close because of these stupid co2 regulations? what will happen to the cost of energy for the average person? his policies are hurting the most the very people he claims he supports. look what his monetary policies have done to the cost of everyday goods. it’s just to bad more people don’t see what a fraud he is.

Posted by: dbs at July 16, 2011 1:02 PM
Comment #325849

stephen

“Obama’s being straight with the people.”

no he isn’t.


“We can’t afford this default. We can’t afford to put ourselves in this position.”


we won’t default, but we will be forced to make some tough decisions. we will have enough to make our interest payments, and soc. sec., and medicare obligations. what we may have to do is cut funds to certain gov’t agencies. we cannot afford to continue the federal unemployment extensions. that has gone on long enough. in a nutshell the democrats will be forced to cut payments to a lot of thier political allies. this is what they fear the most, and is thier real armegeddon.


Posted by: dbs at July 16, 2011 1:16 PM
Comment #325850

you know i find it interesting that we need to talk about fixing soc. sec., and the tough choices that need to be made. ie raise the age, reduce benefits, or increase the earnings cap, when the true fix is simple. make the surplus funds of limits once and for all. problem solved.

Posted by: dbs at July 16, 2011 1:20 PM
Comment #325851

SD writes; “There isn’t enough money to go around. So, instantly, about a 136 billion dollars worth of creditors must be stiffed.”

I wonder if SD understands the difference between the words “creditor” and “beneficiary”. We certainly have enough current revenue coming into our government coffers each month to pay our creditors.

Beneficiaries number in the tens of millions. Recipients of Pork spending in the billions are not creditors, but rather, beneficiaries. The national endowment for the Arts, PBS, and thousands of others just like them are not creditors. Did they loan the government money? Certainly not!! They are beneficiaries, and as such, are subject to reductions or elimination of funding at any time.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 16, 2011 1:25 PM
Comment #325853

in a nutshell the democrats will be forced to cut payments to a lot of thier political allies. this is what they fear the most, and is thier real armegeddon.

Posted by: dbs at July 16, 2011 01:16

Absolutely correct dbs. And, many of the anti-business regulations currently in effect have created job losses. I find it interesting that the left is perfectly willing to advance their MMGW agenda at the expense of our economy knowing full well that those efforts may not make any significant difference in the foreseeable future.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 16, 2011 1:39 PM
Comment #325854

jlw. I wouldn’t compromise either because the compromise is raiseing taxes. Raiseing taxes now on anyone is complete idiocy the way the economy is.

Posted by: KAP at July 16, 2011 1:55 PM
Comment #325855
I wonder if SD understands the difference between the words “creditor” and “beneficiary”.

At this point there is no legal difference between “creditor” and “beneficiary”. Congress passed a law last April obligating the government to pay all sorts of people and organizations for all sorts of reasons. Until Congress repeals that law, we are legally obligated to pay those recipients. If the debt ceiling is not raised, Obama will be forced to break either the law forbidding more borrowing or the law obligating payment of funds.

Here’s another way to think about it. Let’s say I sign a contract with the Milkman/Milkwoman whereby I agree to pay him/her $5 each week for an entire year and he/she agrees to deliver a gallon of milk to me each week for an entire year. Under these circumstances, the milkman has just as much right to $5 of my money each as a banker who lends me $250 and requires $5 a week in payments for a year to repay the principal and interest.

Personally, I think there are plenty of Government programs that are more important than SS or Medicare, thereby making reductions in spending in these programs a necessity if we have no increase in the ceiling by Aug 2.

Posted by: Warped Reality at July 16, 2011 1:57 PM
Comment #325856

This from Townhall magazine…

“Timothy Geithner, remember, was the Chairman of the New York Fed when everything was collapsing back in 2008. He apparently didn’t have any idea that Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns, Merrill Lynch, and all the others were selling tissue paper and calling it gold bullion based on the ratings of Moody’s and S&P.

Naturally, we made him Secretary of the Treasury.”

The left has grabbed onto the headlines by Moody’s and S&P about a possible downgrade in the US credit rating. Good Grief, these are the same two outfits that helped sell worthless securities by falsifying their worthiness.

WR is confused about the meaning of creditor, beneficiary and contract. Do a little research and reading and then get back to us WR.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 16, 2011 2:10 PM
Comment #325858

KAP-
When a guy in a movie shoots the hostage, and then says “Look what you did!” Does anybody believe that the people he was holding off pulled the trigger?

No. It’s a standard convention that this is the villain trying to inflict emotional pain on the heroes or protagonists of the story.

If the Republican fail to pass a debt ceiling vote through the House, if they let this happen, it will be because they withheld it in an attempt to extort these policy changes from everybody else.

Cover yourself in that glory, why don’t you?

jlw. I wouldn’t compromise either because the compromise is raiseing taxes. Raiseing taxes now on anyone is complete idiocy the way the economy is.

And cutting spending, cancelling contract, and all that other wonderful austerity-oriented stuff won’t do the same? Maybe now is not the time to do anything! Maybe the economy is too weak for this budget balancing to work!

But if we do have to make cuts, and we do have to increase taxes a little, why don’t we make the cuts and the tax hikes on thge people who can absorb it first?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 16, 2011 2:14 PM
Comment #325859

SD writes; “But if we do have to make cuts, and we do have to increase taxes a little…”

Been down that road with the dems before…doesn’t work out that way, they lie.

First the cuts and debt limit increase. We can talk about increased taxes in the next budget.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 16, 2011 2:24 PM
Comment #325860

Stephen, The cap, cut and balance with the raiseing of the debt ceiling with equal cuts in spending will IMO pass the house. After Wednesday it’s up to Harry and company, if they fail, it’s YOUR PARTIES FAULT.

Posted by: KAP at July 16, 2011 2:29 PM
Comment #325861

dbs-
Bush granted one tax cut after another. Economic growth still slowed, we still went into recession, and even before the recession took place, the job creation was anemic.

The reason should be plain: rich people already have more money than they spend. They already save more than most people at the start. So we let them keep more money, naturally, they keep more money.

That doesn’t stimulate an economy. Growth come from activity. Growth comes from people shopping and getting things Growth comes from people getting paid because of that, and then growth come again from people turning around and shopping with what they get.

Republicans want the rich to lift everybody up, to be the job creators, but if the job creators can’t find customers for businesses, they’re not going to keep the doors open. They’ll keep the money, instead, and hope for better days.

Republicans have created a system through their policies that is worst than just elitist, it is wrong. It doesn’t do what it claims it is supposed to do.

As for the CO2 regulations? You don’t believe in Global Warming, but it exists, and there will be a price to pay for it. Now, you’ve said that we won’t have to pay for any such thing, but I can point to a long line of things that you folks said weren’t real, weren’t problems, would never go wrong, that nonetheless did. I think we do need to close down those coal-fired plants, and instead generate energy the way a 21st century society can. Where we can make things cleaner, we should, but at the end of the day, we cannot coast on the legacy of our fathers and grandfathers forever.

we won’t default, but we will be forced to make some tough decisions. we will have enough to make our interest payments, and soc. sec., and medicare obligations. what we may have to do is cut funds to certain gov’t agencies. we cannot afford to continue the federal unemployment extensions.

Bachmann and others like her are wrong. Any failure to pay anybody we’re supposed to will be seen as default. Look at your own credit rating. You’re not just knocked on your credit for failing to pay your loans as you promised, but also for failing to pay your bills on time.

Also, we don’t have enough money to cover what you describe, and still cover anything else.

Additionally, the failure to make those other payments will constitute about a ten percent drop in GDP. This isn’t like a family shifting finances around, this is an entire nation whose economy constitutes much of the world’s wealth and economic activity all of a sudden decimating that activity.

To give you a notion of how bad that is, just think of what happened when our economy shrunk at a rate of 6.1%, after the crash on Wall Street.

Now look at us. You treat the budget like it’s a plaything, like you can make these big, dramatic movements, and it won’t mess things up. Your fiscal point of view is fundamentally naive.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 16, 2011 2:34 PM
Comment #325862

Royal Flush-
1) I know the difference. Doesn’t matter, though. A default on our part is a failure to pay anybody we’re legally obligated to pay.

2) Selectivity on our part represents a political unwillingness to honor obligations taken on by this government. The very failure to deal with this debt and those obligations in an efficient and timely manner would be a signal that when America says you’ll be paid, you might be taking a chance by believing what our nation says.

3) Cutting off enough people to fix the shortfall, though, would mean the loss of hundreds of billions of dollars in economic activity. That in and of itself would destablize the economy.

Your people are acting irresponsibly. They’re so drunk on the prospects of getting what they want that they’ve failed to see the harm they can do, or that they’re already doing. I mean, at this point in time, the greatest drag on the economy is not taxes, not private businesses being in trouble financially, not the banks on the brink of failure. The biggest drag on the economy are the hundreds of thousands of people that State and local governments are cutting from their payrolls.

The Republicans came in promising jobs, but at this point, all they seem to be delivering is economic squalor.

This nation can be growing so much faster. It could be so much more productive. But the Republicans feel that in these tough times, they are bound to recapitulation and relitigate Hoover’s decisions, in the hopes that once and for all it can be proved that people like him were right all along. Republicans want to prove that a system where people defer and capitulate to business elites, let them get away with everything for the sake of growth, will bring more prosperity, and they’re willing to ignore the vast majority of the twentieth century, and the passed test of our brand of capitalism, in order to push theirs.

Republicans have failed to produce the results they promised. It’s time to hold them accountable. It’s time for them, for once, to acknowledge that the pain that the economy is feeling right now, is a sign that something should be done, not a birth pang for their new system that must be endured in the name of its glory.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 16, 2011 2:45 PM
Comment #325866

SD wrote; “Any failure to pay anybody we’re supposed to will be seen as default. Look at your own credit rating. You’re not just knocked on your credit for failing to pay your loans as you promised, but also for failing to pay your bills on time.”

OH, please, grow up. If I don’t pay my babysitter it won’t affect my credit rating. Moody’s and S&P issue credit ratings based upon the ability and history of paying creditors. They don’t give a rat’s ass whether PBS gets funding or if we send foreign aid as scheduled, or even if we pay our UN dues.

Pork spending doesn’t create a bill that must be paid. It authorizes spending which can be withdrawn at any time. The mere fact that congress authorizes spending doesn’t create a legal requirement to spend it.

Congress has changed its mind on spending thousands of times. Only the left believes that once began, government authorized spending on something must continue in perpetuity.

SD also wrote; “You don’t believe in Global Warming, but it exists, and there will be a price to pay for it. (FALSE…Global Warming and Global Cooling are well known phenomena.)

I think we do need to close down those coal-fired plants, and instead generate energy the way a 21st century society can.”

Short pants comment and belief. Does SD have any idea from where the energy will come to replace coal? Whose home, whose business would you like to take off the grid?

What 21st century energy supply is ready, now, to replace coal? I sure hope SD can convince obama to publicly announce that he is closing down all coal mining and coal energy production. His next public announcement would be his resignation.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 16, 2011 4:04 PM
Comment #325867

warped


“Personally, I think there are plenty of Government programs that are more important than SS or Medicare,”


medicare, and soc. sec. are funded through thier own payroll deductions. they have to be paid. furthermore soc. sec. takes in more than enough to fund its obligations. the money is there, and the surplus should be off limits, end of story. ie they are not handouts. people pay into them, and should be able to utilize them when they need to.


stephen

“As for the CO2 regulations? You don’t believe in Global Warming, but it exists, and there will be a price to pay for it.”


bulls#!t.


“I think we do need to close down those coal-fired plants, and instead generate energy the way a 21st century society can. Where we can make things cleaner,”


you live in a dream world where ignoring the economic reality of chasing the MMGW hoax will destroy the livelyhood of the very people you claim you support.


“failure to pay anybody we’re supposed to will be seen as default. Look at your own credit rating. You’re not just knocked on your credit for failing to pay your loans as you promised, but also for failing to pay your bills on time.”


welfare, and gov’t programs are not debts. they are gifts. soc. sec., and medicare do not fall into that category. we will be able to pay our bills. however the EPA, and other agencies now plowing forward with the obama green agenda may have to put a lot of things on hold. works for me.


Posted by: dbs at July 16, 2011 4:15 PM
Comment #325868

RF


“Pork spending doesn’t create a bill that must be paid. It authorizes spending which can be withdrawn at any time. The mere fact that congress authorizes spending doesn’t create a legal requirement to spend it.”


thanks…..that’s exactly what i meant to say, but didn’t put it into a nutshell nearly as well.

Posted by: dbs at July 16, 2011 4:19 PM
Comment #325869
the surplus should be off limits, end of story. ie they are not handouts. people pay into them, and should be able to utilize them when they need to.

Ha ha ha! Nice joke. Especially the bit about it not being a handout. I thought we stopped believing in that myth decades ago? I pay into SS, but Hell will freeze over before I ever collect a single cent. Still think this isn’t a handout? The SS fiasco is a perfect example what happens when government gets involved with what should be our own responsibility.

It would be enormously foolish to continue sending out SS checks while neglecting vital spending such as the National Security, our Justice system, and Natural Disaster prediction operations at NOAA and USGS.

Posted by: Warped Reality at July 16, 2011 4:33 PM
Comment #325873

warped

“The SS fiasco is a perfect example what happens when government gets involved with what should be our own responsibility.”

you said it i didn’t. let’s be honest, we could spend days expanding on that thought.


but since it’s here to stay, the reality is the monies collected for it were never suposed to be used for anything else. had congress not been borrowing the surplus all these years to pay for other things, it would be solvent for a long time.

“I pay into SS, but Hell will freeze over before I ever collect a single cent.”


not if we demand they take it out of the equation when funding general liabilities. how do you suppose people would react if there were separate deductions on thier pay stubs for all entitlements, ie welfare, food stamps, federal unemployment insurance, etc. i bet there’d be hell to pay if people realized just how much of thier hard earned money was being given away as handouts.

Posted by: dbs at July 16, 2011 4:57 PM
Comment #325875

WR, how about a refund of premiums paid upon ending Social Security as you suggest.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 16, 2011 5:06 PM
Comment #325876

Great idea dbs. Itemize all federal spending as a percentage of our payroll tax deductions. The paper industry would boom as it would require reams of paper to print each check stub.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 16, 2011 5:12 PM
Comment #325879

RF

“The paper industry would boom as it would require reams of paper to print each check stub.”


as would the trucking, and back pack industries. LOL!!!
sounds like a win win to me.

Posted by: dbs at July 16, 2011 5:33 PM
Comment #325880
how do you suppose people would react if there were separate deductions on thier pay stubs for all entitlements, ie welfare, food stamps, federal unemployment insurance, etc.

That’s already possible. It’s just without the wasted spending of money on paper and ink. (Interestingly, I wrote this before reading RF’s 5:12 PM comment.)

Just so you know, spending on welfare, food stamps and federal unemployment is paltry compared with other things the government does, so I don’t think people would be too outraged at the amounts of money that are spent unless they are the sort of person who would get upset at any number greater than zero.

RF,
I have no problem ending SS as currently structured; it’s a very illiberal program. Personally, I’d prefer raising the retirement age so that only the very old benefit because SS does serve a useful purpose for people who outlive their retirement accounts. However it is impossible to refund premiums for people like you who have paid payroll taxes for decades. The sad truth is that the money no longer exists.

Posted by: Warped Reality at July 16, 2011 5:43 PM
Comment #325883

WR wrote; “However it is impossible to refund premiums for people like you who have paid payroll taxes for decades. The sad truth is that the money no longer exists.”

Yes, it is sad that all that exists are promissory notes based upon the full faith and credit of the US. And, obama has said, he’s not sure those notes will have any value without a debt limit increase.

It may surprise you to know WR, that the majority of folks receiving SS benefits have little or no other source of income when they retire. Many pension plans have been lost by company bankruptcy or been reduced by losses of investment in them. And, many folks who worked all their lives have no pension plan at all.

My wife is a retired Texas educator. Their pension plan is very solvent and one of the largest in the nation. Yet, she has not received an increase in her monthly benefits for 10 years.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 16, 2011 6:52 PM
Comment #325895
Many pension plans have been lost by company bankruptcy or been reduced by losses of investment in them. And, many folks who worked all their lives have no pension plan at all.

So why is it my job to bail you out? I wasn’t even born yet when politicians decided to mismanage social security; why should I be held accountable for their misdeeds?

Posted by: Warped Reality at July 16, 2011 9:01 PM
Comment #325900

Warped, Everytime the mention of fixing SS comes up liberals like you have a hissy fit. Bush wanted to privitize it but Democrats had a fit. Write your reps tell them abouit it.

Posted by: KAP at July 16, 2011 9:58 PM
Comment #325905
Write your reps tell them abouit it.

I’ve already done that countless times.

Bush’s scheme would have taken a bad situation and made it much much worse. Either end the program entirely or reform it to make it solvent, but don’t add extraneous things like investing payroll taxes in the stock market.

Posted by: Warped Reality at July 16, 2011 10:13 PM
Comment #325909

some of the responses here are delusional.

SD and WR

I am going to get a circle of friends around the computer and run your comments and record the laughter. I will then sell the sound track to some media group for a really good laughter sound track. Both of you lack wisdom it is shown in your writing. The assumptions you make are truly laughable. I am not going to debate your negative. You can’t debate a negative.

Posted by: tom humes at July 16, 2011 10:34 PM
Comment #325910

Warped, As long as the federal government runs SS, you will never see what you have paid in. I’ve had a 401k that has been fairly stable since I lost $1,000. in 2008 when everything fell apart. I just moved to an investment that was more stable. Someone your age will have to think for himself about your golden years because left up to the government you will have nothing.

Posted by: KAP at July 16, 2011 10:34 PM
Comment #325913
As long as the federal government runs SS, you will never see what you have paid in. I’ve had a 401k that has been fairly stable since I lost $1,000. in 2008 when everything fell apart. I just moved to an investment that was more stable. Someone your age will have to think for himself about your golden years because left up to the government you will have nothing.

KAP, I’m already well aware of that. I’ve already purchased some bonds with the money I saved from my previous jobs. If current trends continue, I’ll do the same at the end of this summer too.

TH,

The assumptions you make are truly laughable.

Are you talking about my comments on SS or our debt problems?

Posted by: Warped Reality at July 16, 2011 10:51 PM
Comment #325919

warped

“Bush’s scheme would have taken a bad situation and made it much much worse.”


bush never tried to privatize social security. his plan would have allowed poeple under a certain age to invest a small portion of thier money in an approved investment vehicle. all this blathering about trying to privatize social security is just that, blather.

http://www.heritage.org/Research/Reports/2005/04/The-Bush-Plan-To-Reform-Social-Security-Case-Studies-from-the-Heritage-PRA-Calculator


“So why is it my job to bail you out? I wasn’t even born yet when politicians decided to mismanage social security; why should I be held accountable for their misdeeds?”


isn’t that wonderful WR, we all get stuck fixing the mess made by our elected officials. all that money taken out of soc. sec. and replaced with IOUs, so they could grow the size of gov’t, and buy votes from the entitlement voters.

Posted by: dbs at July 17, 2011 11:01 AM
Comment #325921
bush never tried to privatize social security.
KAP said privatize, not me.
in an approved investment vehicle
(emphasis mine)

This is the hitch. If I can’t choose where I invest my money (or even the quantity of money I want to invest) then it’s all a farce. And every time the stock market goes down, retired people are either not going to get their money or Uncle Sam would bail them out. I’m sorry, but this scheme is rotten from the start; it’s very rare for a hybrid government/private scheme to function. Either the governmental part shields it from market pressures and dooms it or the private part takes away the voter’s ability to control what’s going on.

Posted by: Warped Reality at July 17, 2011 11:23 AM
Comment #325923

warped

“Either the governmental part shields it from market pressures and dooms it or the private part takes away the voter’s ability to control what’s going on.”


i thought you didn’t believe the gov’t doing for us what we should be doing for ourselves. we are forced to pay into soc. sec.. how can allowing someone some control over a portion of thier funds be bad? also why would you want the voters to have control over how you invest those funds?

i find it interesting that you it appears at a young age are taking control of your financial future. kudos. but why would you be opposed to those paying into soc. sec. some control over thier funds? keep in mind we’re not talking about allowing them to buy futures contracts, but rather give them some ability to manage thier own financial futures. this would also take a potion away from politicians preventing them from spending it in unrelated programs. that in of itself is a huge plus.

Posted by: dbs at July 17, 2011 11:40 AM
Comment #325925

I’d rather not pay into SS at all than join some harebrained scheme that diverts funds into private investments over which I have no control.

Bush’s scheme mixed the worst of government with the worst of private investments. As I said, hybrid entities usually don’t work out well, look at what happened to FNMA and FHLMC. Those organizations were “private” in the sense that they were operated independently (voters had no control over their business), but on the other hand we still had to bail them out. GNMA, on the other hand is entirely managed by government and suffered no problems. Companies that are entirely privately run may or may not perform well, but that isn’t a concern of mine.

i find it interesting that you it appears at a young age are taking control of your financial future. kudos.
It really shouldn’t be surprising though. Everyone should be planning ahead instead of living paycheck to paycheck, or at least that’s what my parents have always told me. It’s really sad that I am complimented for doing something everyone should be doing anyway.
but why would you be opposed to those paying into soc. sec. some control over thier funds? keep in mind we’re not talking about allowing them to buy futures contracts, but rather give them some ability to manage thier own financial futures. this would also take a potion away from politicians preventing them from spending it in unrelated programs. that in of itself is a huge plus.

I think I said it earlier, but I’ll reiterate. Allowing people to invest the money they pay into SS, but continuing it under the umbrella of government is a recipe for disaster, which I thought we learned from the “too big too fail” entities we bailed out in the last few years. Let me put it this way, let’s say we have this sort of scheme and I decide to take full advantage of it. I’ll be 65 in 2055 so let’s say the stock market crashes in 2054 and I lose quite a bit of value in my government managed retirement account. The same thing happens to all my peers; because the program is still under the auspices of FDR’s social security, we demand that the government pay us our full due to make up for the stock market crash. Because Seniors are such a reliable electoral constituency, the politicians cave and bail out all our retirement accounts. This scenario is unacceptable. If people are investing their money privately, then it needs to be clear that there is no governmental guarantee of any sort, which means such a system must be completely divorced from the preexisting SS system.

Posted by: Warped Reality at July 17, 2011 12:26 PM
Comment #325928

warped

“because the program is still under the auspices of FDR’s social security, we demand that the government pay us our full due to make up for the stock market crash.”


there in lies the problem. people don’t like uncertainty, and as a result look to the gov’t for guarantees. in doing so they become more and more dependant on the actions of others, expecting them to make it right. in life there are no guarantees of outcome. the best way to achieve the desired outcome is to take responsiblity for your own well being, and at the same time accept that things still may not go your way, and if they don’t it is no one elses responsibilty to make it right.

Posted by: dbs at July 17, 2011 12:49 PM
Comment #325931
in doing so they become more and more dependant on the actions of others, expecting them to make it right. in life there are no guarantees of outcome. the best way to achieve the desired outcome is to take responsiblity for your own well being, and at the same time accept that things still may not go your way, and if they don’t it is no one elses responsibilty to make it right.

True. This is why Bush’s scheme would lead us down the road to ruin. If government is on the hook for guaranteeing payments, it must be able to control how those monies are invested, which is how the current system works (everyone is forced to invest in what is the equivalent of low-yield treasury bonds; giving politicians a source of cheap loans to fund whatever they want).

Posted by: Warped Reality at July 17, 2011 1:01 PM
Comment #325958


Contrary to popular belief, social programs did not come about because people wanted something for nothing.

They came about because wealthy interests had a propensity for hoarding wealth to themselves and the wages that workers received for their labor amounted to nothing but a subsistence living for the families of huge numbers of them.

Comparing the buying power of workers in the first half of the twentieth century with that of workers in the second half is like comparing a Model T to a modern luxury sedan.

The programs have played a key role in helping to create what is arguably the most powerful special interest group today, the investors.

Have we reached a pinnacle where these programs have done what they where created for? Have they out grown their usefulness and now have only become a deterrent to productivity and profit? Is it time to start phasing out the no longer useful progressive era?

When you have to step on the losers to get to work, make sure you dig your heels in.

Posted by: jlw at July 17, 2011 7:01 PM
Comment #325970
but why would you be opposed to those paying into soc. sec. some control over thier funds? keep in mind we’re not talking about allowing them to buy futures contracts, but rather give them some ability to manage thier own financial futures.

dbs, what you are suggesting is a 401k plan. They can do that now. SS is an insurance program not a stock market investment program. Paying into the SS fund does not stop anyone from investing in the market, including the futures market if they want.
I put a bit over a grand each into funds for my grand kids back in ‘98. These were mutual funds invested in the stock market. They did good for a year or so , then the stock market went south, then it picked up then went south again. So as of today these funds have about the same amount of money as they did in ‘00. One of the grand kids lost her dad a few years back and receives some survivors benefits until she is 18. Much better than the funds invested in the stock market for her and when she starts working she will be paying into the SS fund, which of coursed will be better for us.


Posted by: j2t2 at July 17, 2011 9:58 PM
Comment #325990

tom humes-
Oh no, your friends are going to laugh at me. I guess I should reconsider all the points I made now, so I don’t end up whimpering in a fetal position on the bathroom floor.

Give me a break. If you think my positions are awful, illogical, whatever, then you go ahead, and you attempt to disprove them, discredit them. No, I won’t make it easy, but if you can’t do it, if you haven’t earned it, I’m not going to knuckle down and shut up just because you’re going to get your friends to make fun of me.

You’re going to have to out argue and out-logic me. I am not so weak in my beliefs that I’m going to cave in for the sake of your contempt alone, which seems to be all you bring to the debate.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 18, 2011 11:45 AM
Comment #330894

from high-heeled shoes,and enjoycheap nike shox your freedom.The material of these boots is soft cloth.The scream line upper add the beauty of the whole designnike shox r4 silver.The three buttons are adornments of 5879 UGG Classic Argyle Knit,which make your legs look longer.wearing such a pair of boots makes you a graceful women in even in leisure days.We have different nike shox r4 goldgrains and colors for you to choose.

Posted by: erty at October 22, 2011 4:16 AM
Post a comment