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Old 07-21-2011, 11:56 AM   #81 (permalink)
 
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controlling negative outcomes is good a priori.
it does not matter what the reality of baseball games are.
now hush.
we know best.
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Old 07-21-2011, 12:12 PM   #82 (permalink)
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Well, let's stop dancing around the issue. Both the right and the left have to realize that neither one of them should get their way. There is only one real and meaningful solution to the U.S. budget problem, and that's austerity.

Namely, deep cuts to development and entitlements (mainly welfare and social spending), the significant raising of taxes across the board (weighted highest towards the wealthiest), and adding user fees (mainly to transportation and other essential services).

Only then will we know whether anyone is serious.

But no. It's either a longer-term deficit reduction program (too gradual) or a one-sided focus on spending cuts (not enough).
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Old 07-21-2011, 12:22 PM   #83 (permalink)
 
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but there is an ongoing economic crisis. unemployment is unacceptably high. corporations and banks are holding onto capital, so there's no investment to speak of and no lending. historically speaking, austerity moves in a crisis situation have exacerbated the crisis situation. that cannot be wished away.

there's a perfectly reasonable argument that the current debt levels are entirely manageable and the debt ceiling "problem" nothing but a rightwing canard the function of which is to provide the demographic with another way to draw a ring around itself and nothing more....the problem from that viewpoint, really, is that obama is entirely too willing to play ball with people he should simply roll over, ignore, and force to into defending their ideology and it's 40 record of failure.

obama really should be far more of a social democrat than he is. i think a lot of us who voted for him projected someone well to the left of what we got.
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Old 07-21-2011, 12:32 PM   #84 (permalink)
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Well, public debt expressed as a % of GDP (you know, a measure indicating a nation's ability to manage debt), America's debt load is at or just below the world average.

This is why a longer-term deficit reduction program is sensible vs. extreme measures. There is no need for extreme measures. There is merely a need for a plan.

Spending is an issue, yes. But following (and during, ostensibly) a period of excessive spending and tax cuts, you've got to look at the big picture.
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Old 07-21-2011, 12:38 PM   #85 (permalink)
 
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it really makes no sense to continue paying attention to supply-side/neo-liberal orthodoxy about the state, given the fiasco that it's been implemented. i mean unless you're in the top 1% in terms of income. then you've made out. of course. class war--that's what neo-liberalism is about. class war in an ideological framework that gets the usual lumpen-bourgeois elements to carry shit for it. even a moderately keynesian approach would be a vast improvement. what are the socially and economically desirable outcomes that we, collectively, should be working toward? we want to address unemployment? make a job policy--make a state investment strategy--hell, it's worked in every other industrialized country and often very well. one easy place to start is to raise taxes on the fuel that allows global supply chains to operate and force a fragmentation/re-regionalization of production. who gives a fuck if investors take a short-term haircut? they'll get over it and likely will make out better in the longer run by increasing demand for products in general because more people will have jobs. and let unions organize---not the same kind as the red-baiting history of the united states allowed for, but allow trade-union pluralism and the language of dissent that brings with it.

it's not that hard.

[[ended abruptly due to ambient conditions....]]
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Old 07-21-2011, 03:39 PM   #86 (permalink)
 
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in a democratic context---you know, an actual democracy--because what people decide is meaningful (so they have power) it would not be possible for a failed economic ideology like neo-liberalism to continue to be taken seriously simply because it is possible for people to dissociate the ideology from the consequences of its having been dominant for 40 years. it would not be possible to have destructive, reactionary political worldviews continue to be circulated simply because people have the resources to buy channels that repeat and reinforce it. because decisions taken would be meaningful, because people would have power, comparisons of framework to effect would be routine. and information would have to be relatively undistorted. the persistence in the face of history and reason of dissociative supply-side nonsense is a symptom of our collective powerlessness. that people invest in it without being able to do anything but repeat it's premises is an indication of powerlessness. because nothing is at stake in what we the people think. we have no power. but we rattle on endlessly as if we did.

much of the contemporary forms of disempowerment are expressed in and are expressions of the capitalist organization of labor.

but to know that you'd have to think labor mattered, that the organization of work mattered as more than an abstraction that's factored in when the captains of imaginary industry get all hayeky and pretend think about the history of price. the material organization of work---the division of intellectual labor--is a basic expression of power relations in a capitalist context. most are part of an intellectual proletariat, subjected to fragmented, stupid information and given ridiculous interpretive frameworks fit to it. largely as a management tool.

it continues to amaze me that people who believe in fantasies like free markets and like to blab about individual freedom (freedom in the sense that involves no power) support an economic theory that not only produces class warfare that most of them are victims of, but worse advocates the removal or limitation of mechanisms that make private sector actors accountable to a public. it's an ideology of self-dispowerment, the stuff of slaves, in nietzsche's sense.

i gotta go.
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Old 07-21-2011, 03:53 PM   #87 (permalink)
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Rachel Maddow did a great segment on the debt ceiling last night. The crux of her argument was simple: this "crisis" is 100% artificially created byt the GOP, entirely for political reasons. This "crisis" goes away with a simple "yes" vote to raise the ceiling. It could happen in minutes. But instead, you have the "rejectionist caucus" (ie the Tea Party) who will vote no regardless of the harm it will cause. They'd rather see the country blow up than back down from their black and white world view.

It's not about spending or taxation, it's about rich white men digging in their heels to play political games, regardless of the fact that the end game could be disaster
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Old 07-21-2011, 07:34 PM   #88 (permalink)
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Want to know what the main reason is for the drastic increase in deficits? It is not "obamacare." It is not TARP. It is not a myriad of new programs.

It is mostly because revenues have dropped precipitously because of the crisis, and because the government has has to spend a lot more on the safety net.
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Old 07-22-2011, 07:21 AM   #89 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roachboy View Post
in baseball games the team that scores the larger number of runs wins.
when a smaller number of runs is scored, the result is negative.

the control over the number of runs our team scores is direct.
our control over the number of runs the other team scores is indirect.
This is not correct. A team does not have direct control over the runs they score or the runs the other team scores. The easiest way to illustrate this is that a defensive team can simply purposefully walk batters to allow runs to score. the Offensive team has no direct control over that.

---------- Post added at 03:21 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:18 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by roachboy View Post
controlling negative outcomes is good a priori.
it does not matter what the reality of baseball games are.
now hush.
we know best.
Clarify you position. Do you agree or disagree that spending is directly controlled and that revenues are indirectly controlled?
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Old 07-22-2011, 07:27 AM   #90 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by aceventura3 View Post
This is not correct. A team does not have direct control over the runs they score or the runs the other team scores. The easiest way to illustrate this is that a defensive team can simply purposefully walk batters to allow runs to score. the Offensive team has no direct control over that.

---------- Post added at 03:21 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:18 PM ----------



Clarify you position. Do you agree or disagree that spending is directly controlled and that revenues are indirectly controlled?
I should know better to engage you on this, but in any case, you wildly overstate how much control government has over spending.

You can't fine tune or drastically change spending on entitlements, for example.

Nevermind, of course, the fact that the current republican talking point is more about short term economic slowdown to help with next year's election than any sincere commitment to fiscal balance.
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Old 07-22-2011, 07:37 AM   #91 (permalink)
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Well, let's stop dancing around the issue.
Let's.

The idea of a debt ceiling is not even serious. Just because we have a debt ceiling or just because we restrict borrowing that does not mean that the nation stops incurring debt.

Think about the importance of that statement for a moment. When you do, it is easy to realize that this whole raising the debt ceiling issue is a manufactured one.

The simple answer is this:

The President of the US has the Constitutional obligation to pay the bills incurred by Congress. I did not use the words, option, privilege, right, I used the word obligation. In my view the President has no choice but to pay the nations bills, even if he has to print more currency to do it.

---------- Post added at 03:33 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:28 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Derwood View Post
Rachel Maddow did a great segment on the debt ceiling last night. The crux of her argument was simple: this "crisis" is 100% artificially created byt the GOP, entirely for political reasons.
I said the same thing. Republicans are using this issue to push spending cuts and to implement spending controls. This has been the Tea Party agenda from the beginning. Nice to see MSNBC hosts getting up to speed.

Quote:
This "crisis" goes away with a simple "yes" vote to raise the ceiling.
Obama and almost every sitting Democrat in office today voted against the last debt ceiling increase, saying it was irresponsible. What did she say about that? .....sounds of crickets chirping....

---------- Post added at 03:37 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:33 PM ----------

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Originally Posted by dippin View Post
I should know better to engage you on this, but in any case, you wildly overstate how much control government has over spending.
Yes, we know I see things in "black and white" and that most of you here don't. Trust me, I do understand the nature of what Washington has created and that the structure of many of the programs implemented over the past few hundred years are some what on automatic pilot. But, these things are correctable they can be controlled. We have options and choices.
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Old 07-22-2011, 07:52 AM   #92 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aceventura3 View Post
Let's.

The idea of a debt ceiling is not even serious. Just because we have a debt ceiling or just because we restrict borrowing that does not mean that the nation stops incurring debt.

Think about the importance of that statement for a moment. When you do, it is easy to realize that this whole raising the debt ceiling issue is a manufactured one.

The simple answer is this:

The President of the US has the Constitutional obligation to pay the bills incurred by Congress. I did not use the words, option, privilege, right, I used the word obligation. In my view the President has no choice but to pay the nations bills, even if he has to print more currency to do it.
Many of us admit that the debt ceiling thing is political. Now if only the Republicans would just get out of the way.

Quote:
Obama and almost every sitting Democrat in office today voted against the last debt ceiling increase, saying it was irresponsible. What did she say about that? .....sounds of crickets chirping....
I can't recall which economic crisis was going on at the time Bush was pushing to increase the debt ceiling. Can you remind me?
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Old 07-22-2011, 08:02 AM   #93 (permalink)
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Many of us admit that the debt ceiling thing is political. Now if only the Republicans would just get out of the way.
No. Obama stated that 8/2/11 was some kind of "drop dead" date. Obama stated that he was not going to fulfill his Constitutional obligation unless Congress acted. The only way Obama operates is through artificial crises. If Republicans are in his way, it is by his choice.

Quote:
I can't recall which economic crisis was going on at the time Bush was pushing to increase the debt ceiling. Can you remind me?
It wasn't a crisis. It has never been a crisis. It won't be a crisis under the next administration. I doubt it would have been a crisis if Hilery Clinton or McCain won and was in the WH. The debt ceiling thing has always been a formality, once the votes are there, others have the opportunity to make their protest votes and speeches against the priorities set by the opposing party. It is amazing that polling results suggest that Republicans are responsible for this 8/2/11 all or the world ends proposition.

How many times has Obama saved us from the "brink"? I am sure he will do it again before 8/2/11. I have lost count.
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Old 07-22-2011, 08:11 AM   #94 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by aceventura3 View Post
No.
No what?

Quote:
Obama stated that 8/2/11 was some kind of "drop dead" date. Obama stated that he was not going to fulfill his Constitutional obligation unless Congress acted. The only way Obama operates is through artificial crises. If Republicans are in his way, it is by his choice.
So Obama isn't letting the Republicans agree to raise the debt ceiling? Can you explain this to me? I'm not exactly well versed in the process.

Quote:
It wasn't a crisis. It has never been a crisis. It won't be a crisis under the next administration. I doubt it would have been a crisis if Hilery Clinton or McCain won and was in the WH. The debt ceiling thing has always been a formality, once the votes are there, others have the opportunity to make their protest votes and speeches against the priorities set by the opposing party. It is amazing that polling results suggest that Republicans are responsible for this 8/2/11 all or the world ends proposition.

How many times has Obama saved us from the "brink"? I am sure he will do it again before 8/2/11. I have lost count.
I'm talking about the global economic crisis, ace.

Again, please inform me on why it's so difficult for the Republicans to agree to a formality. What is Obama doing to destroy them politically? Please explain this to me.
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Old 07-22-2011, 08:38 AM   #95 (permalink)
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No what?
It is not the Republicans that are in the way of handling the debt ceiling issue.

Quote:
So Obama isn't letting the Republicans agree to raise the debt ceiling? Can you explain this to me? I'm not exactly well versed in the process.
This issue is and has been known since Obama took office. Not addressing the issue until now has been his choice. It is his responsibility to make sure the country's bills get paid. He has to work with Congress to get that done. It is his responsibility to submit and get budgets approved, which he has failed to do. His party currently controls the WH and the Senate. They have the power to set the agenda. They have not. As I recall there has not been a simple up/down vote in either chamber regarding raising the ceiling. I bet if there was, starting in the Senate, it would have passed.

You can not expect people against the raising the debt ceiling to vote to increase the debt ceiling. However, a leader can make it happen. Obama has not.

If you want me to tell you what I would do, I hesitate because it really serves no purpose. It is clear to me that as a leader Obama is failing on this issue. He can not blame anyone but himself. In addition to this failing, my position also is that the whole crisis is a manufactured one. So, not only is he failing, but he is failing in a situation he manufactured.

Quote:
I'm talking about the global economic crisis, ace.
The US is going to pay its bills. If we don't Obama should be impeached. There is no reason for the US not to pay its bills.

What follows is a pure ad-hominem rant and has no value to anyone other than allowing me to blow off some frustration...

Our Treasury Secretary could not even figure out how to pay his own taxes, yet he is in charge of the nations' finances. What a joke. If this guy can't figure out how to move money around to pay our bills he should resign. About three years ago, my business had a credit line frozen. We had business credit that went from a 6% rate to a 21% rate virtually overnight. We had declining revenue, and we had clients who either became slow to pay or unable to pay what they owed. I still had people to pay, bills to pay, taxes to pay, etc...know what, I figured out a way to do it. Geitner has been seeing this coming for a couple of years now, what a joke. It is too bad Obama is surrounded by academics and bureaucrats rather than people who have run businesses.

Quote:
Again, please inform me on why it's so difficult for the Republicans to agree to a formality. What is Obama doing to destroy them politically? Please explain this to me.
I bet if the debt ceiling issue was put to a vote as a single issue, it would pass. What most Republicans will not vote for is a tax increase. What some Republicans are saying is that they want spending controls and cuts tied to the debt ceiling increase to get their vote - this issue could have been easily managed, but it was not.
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Old 07-22-2011, 11:45 AM   #96 (permalink)
 
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ace is merely repeating the tea party talking points.

there is no crisis.

ok well maybe there is but it's all obama's fault.

we should instituted more of the same bullshit economic policy based on bullshit economic theory that created this mess in the first place.

the dismal record of neo-liberal ideology in producing anything beyond increased class disparities is the fault of a recalcitrant reality that, as we all know, always has a liberal bias.

so what is required is the elimination of reality and a wholesale imposition of the same bullshit, but in a more orthodox form.

now it's all get on our knees and repeat the gospel of milton freidman.
1. blah blah blah.
2. blah blah blah.
3. blah blah blah.

the important thing is to be on your knees.


simply repeating over and over the same premises and the same arguments is not participating in a discussion.

and since we are not an politically bankrupt conservative party which is saddled with a lunatic fringe solely because it made a political calculation that, with the help of good ole faux news, building an astroturf movement called the tea party would help people forget that the republicans now are the same republicans responsible for the debacle of the bush administration, there's no reason for any of us to accept that ace is in a position to stipulate any of the conditions of any discussion that happens here.
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Old 07-22-2011, 12:03 PM   #97 (permalink)
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ace makes some good points on a fundamental level. What's disagreeable is his opinions of the situation.

It being Obama's failure should Republicans turn down a sensible plan is a difficult thing to swallow. Especially considering ace calls it a situation of Obama's own device and that Obama is single-handedly responsible for it, as an individual. A tough thing to swallow.

Of course, I doubt ace would admit Obama's plan is anywhere close to sensible. Tax increases are absolutely out of the question. It's either low taxes or no deal. The lone wolf Obama is dropping the ball.

So what is all this "Gang of Six" noise I'm hearing about?
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Old 07-22-2011, 12:24 PM   #98 (permalink)
 
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this seems a reasonably good synopsis as of this morning. from the financial times:

Quote:
US debt deal elusive amid political puzzle

By Richard McGregor in Washington

They have been courted, cajoled, threatened and warned that they will bring the US and the global financial system to ruin. But as the crisis over the US budget has steadily mounted, the Republicans have barely shifted.

For months, the Republicans in the House of Representatives, a Tea Party-inspired group militantly against new taxes, have held firm against any budget agreement that contains higher revenues.

Then on Thursday, only days before the US Treasury says the government will run out of cash, Democrats in Congress erupted over suggestions Barack Obama was willing to trim healthcare to bring Republicans on board.

The fear among Democrats that the president will sell them out by agreeing to Republican spending cuts without a commitment to raise more revenues injected another level of uncertainty into negotiations over the budget.

A heady mixture of anxiety and anger, along with fragile optimism and deep fear, is engulfing Washington as the clock ticks down on the August 2 deadline for Congress to approve an increase in the country’s borrowing limit.

The debt ceiling has been approved mostly as a matter of routine for decades by both parties, but the country’s ballooning deficit, inflated by the financial crisis and defence spending in the short-term and health costs and pensions in coming decades, has changed the political calculus.

The negotiations increasingly resemble a game of 20-dimensional chess, with the interests of the White House, the Democrats and the Republicans in both houses all diverging even as they near a patchwork deal.

Business and Wall St are fretting as well, fearing a financial implosion if Congress fails to lift the borrowing limit, while worrying that any agreement could strip them of valuable tax breaks.

Overhanging the debate is next year’s presidential election, with the White House and Democrats nervous that immediate spending cuts could squeeze the faltering economy, and their prospects at the ballot box, at the same time.

Mr Obama and John Boehner, the Republican house speaker, have attempted to forge a grand bargain to cut $3,000bn over ten years from the deficit in tightly-held negotiations between their top advisers.

But so far neither men have been able to reach a deal between themselves, let alone sell the outlines of a potential agreement to their frustrated supporters.

Mr Obama returned to the campaign trail on Friday, saying that the “wealthiest Americans and the biggest corporations” should pay their fair share of deficit reduction.

“Let’s ask hedge fund managers to stop paying taxes that are lower on their rates than their secretaries,” he said.

Mr Obama hinted that any deficit deal would be vague on the details of budget reform because of the complexity of rewriting the tax code in such a short time.

Some Republicans in the Senate have joined with Democrats in the chamber to try to forge a bipartisan deal, but in the House there is no such meeting of minds.

About one-third of House Republicans were elected in last November’s landslide victory for the party in the midterm elections and they have vowed to abide by their commitment to cut spending and oppose taxes.

“Anyone who got elected on the mandate they received, they can’t do anything less,” said Senator Mike Lee, a Utah Republican.

Republicans are furious that the Democrats in Congress have been unable to come up with a budget proposal, while they took significant risk in voting their own radical plan through the house.

“There is really not much to talk about when we have not had a response from the Democrats,” said Randy Neugebauer, a Texas Republican.

Both House and Senate members left a capital in the grip of a heatwave on Friday afternoon to return to their home districts, after engaging in a largely ritualistic vote in favour of their respective positions.

The signature House Republican proposal backed by Mr Boehner – to “cut, cap and balance” the deficit – was voted down in the Senate, leaving him under pressure to forge a more centrist position.

House Republicans left a meeting with Mr Boehner in a gloomy mood.

“The speaker was the most sort of melancholy I’ve seen him,” said Steve LaTourette, an Ohio Republican, told Bloomberg. “He wanted to, I think, report to the conference that substantial progress was being made, we’re moving in the right direction, and he couldn’t give that report.”
US debt deal elusive amid political puzzle - FT.com

so far as ace's repetitions are concerned...he lines up words in a sequence that makes sense structurally. by which i mean there are sentences that makes sense. but there's really nothing about this neo-liberal worldview that is coherent beyond the confines of econ 101. it's been a disaster as a guide for policy. it has no descriptive component---so it cannot take account of anything remotely like the social-historical world. we do not live in these simple-minded hydraulic models or amongst these metaphysical constructions like "real wealth" which is always Other than wealth created by anything...we live in a historical situation the magnitude of which is in significant measure a result of neo-liberal "thinking"---sooner or later we need to be done with it.

have to start somewhere.
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Old 07-22-2011, 01:03 PM   #99 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by aceventura3 View Post

Yes, we know I see things in "black and white" and that most of you here don't. Trust me, I do understand the nature of what Washington has created and that the structure of many of the programs implemented over the past few hundred years are some what on automatic pilot. But, these things are correctable they can be controlled. We have options and choices.
Correctable in the long term? Sure.

Correctable in the short term, as in the next couple of years?

There is a reason why spending is described as "discretionary" vs "mandatory."

Sure, we could slash pensions of everyone receiving pensions in half right now, but that would likely create a number of legal challenges, on top of a massive drop in revenues, that would likely only exacerbate the problem.
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Old 07-22-2011, 01:40 PM   #100 (permalink)
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ace is merely repeating the tea party talking points.

there is no crisis.

ok well maybe there is but it's all obama's fault.


we should instituted more of the same bullshit economic policy based on bullshit economic theory that created this mess in the first place.

the dismal record of neo-liberal ideology in producing anything beyond increased class disparities is the fault of a recalcitrant reality that, as we all know, always has a liberal bias.
More of this "neo-liberal" vagueness. Are Tea Party people "neo-liberals"? Are we responsible for the current state of affairs? For example, did the Tea Party pass and then extend the Bush tax cuts? Or was it some other people that got us in this mess? Are the Tea Party people the same as these other people? Are Tea Party people simply Republicans? What about the times when Republicans were not in power? Do non-Republican bear some responsibility? Are Republicans the same as non-Republicans? Are these non-Republicans Democrats? Are Democrats neo-liberals too? Perhaps you can tell me, other than you, who is not a neo-liberal? Give me one current name! If you do I will never bring this issue up again, promise!

---------- Post added at 09:28 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:14 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Baraka_Guru View Post
ace makes some good points on a fundamental level. What's disagreeable is his opinions of the situation.

It being Obama's failure should Republicans turn down a sensible plan is a difficult thing to swallow. Especially considering ace calls it a situation of Obama's own device and that Obama is single-handedly responsible for it, as an individual. A tough thing to swallow.
O.k., here is what I would do and why, if I believed I needed the debt limit increased.

First, establish negotiation leverage. I tell Congress starting in January with the State of the Union Address. Pass a clean debt ceiling increase bill. Without that clean bill, there will be no discussions regarding spending cuts, budgets, taxes or anything else.

Second, use the leverage. Regularly talk to the American people stating that the consequences of failing to increase the debt limit is unreasonable and that the best course of action is to address spending, taxes and budgets without the threat of a government shut-down or default. Polls show most people agree.

Third, introduce the legislation I want passed in both the House and Senate. Get something specific on the table.

Fourth, hold Congress accountable. If the legislation is held up, make Congress explain it to the American people.

Fifth, after passage of the debt limit increase move on to other issues....

Quote:
Of course, I doubt ace would admit Obama's plan is anywhere close to sensible. Tax increases are absolutely out of the question. It's either low taxes or no deal. The lone wolf Obama is dropping the ball.
Will you join me in a movement to initiate a special tax on cat owners. I understand that about 10% of American households own a cat, and if these folks can afford a cat, I am certain that they can actually afford to help real live people, especially the children. Why should cats live in luxury, while some people are actually dieing of old age. It is not fair. We clearly need to spread it around a bit, don't you agree?

---------- Post added at 09:40 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:28 PM ----------

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Originally Posted by dippin View Post
Correctable in the long term? Sure.

Correctable in the short term, as in the next couple of years?

There is a reason why spending is described as "discretionary" vs "mandatory."
Sorry, I don't know what that reason is. Are you my wife posting in the other room? She often tells me when spending is "mandatory" and I often disagree, but I almost always keep that to myself. Something to do with that old saying about if momma ain't happy... - but the point is just because some people won't like it cut doesn't make it "mandatory".

Quote:
Sure, we could slash pensions of everyone receiving pensions in half right now, but that would likely create a number of legal challenges, on top of a massive drop in revenues, that would likely only exacerbate the problem.
That is why I say this is manufactured. Congress created these obligations and therefore we are obligated to make good on our promises. The US will not default. It is the President's obligation to pay our bills. The debt ceiling is truly meaningless. On one hand they commit to making payments and on the other they commit to restrict their ability to actually make the payments. Isn't that some kind of an oxymoron, or is it a system created by morons? Either way, the President's responsibilities are clear.
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Old 07-22-2011, 01:57 PM   #101 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by aceventura3 View Post
O.k., here is what I would do and why, if I believed I needed the debt limit increased.

First, establish negotiation leverage. I tell Congress starting in January with the State of the Union Address. Pass a clean debt ceiling increase bill. Without that clean bill, there will be no discussions regarding spending cuts, budgets, taxes or anything else.

Second, use the leverage. Regularly talk to the American people stating that the consequences of failing to increase the debt limit is unreasonable and that the best course of action is to address spending, taxes and budgets without the threat of a government shut-down or default. Polls show most people agree.

Third, introduce the legislation I want passed in both the House and Senate. Get something specific on the table.

Fourth, hold Congress accountable. If the legislation is held up, make Congress explain it to the American people.

Fifth, after passage of the debt limit increase move on to other issues....
There is a difference between playing politics with the debt ceiling and parsing it on its own separate from other economic issues regarding budgetary and fiscal matters of state. I'm not sure either is very helpful. However, if it's simply a matter of making the debt ceiling an automatic thing, that's another matter.

How rational would it be to pass a bill on the debt ceiling without addressing anything else? It would be like green-lighting new credit without stipulating how that credit is to be used. It woud be like a blank cheque...but debt.

Quote:
Will you join me in a movement to initiate a special tax on cat owners. I understand that about 10% of American households own a cat, and if these folks can afford a cat, I am certain that they can actually afford to help real live people, especially the children. Why should cats live in luxury, while some people are actually dieing of old age. It is not fair. We clearly need to spread it around a bit, don't you agree?
No. How preposterous. Why is it that you come up with these silly ideas or stories whenever we talk about things you disagree with?

Do you ever see me going on about how it would be great if we could cut spending by replacing the military's munitions with purple glitter paintballs?

Why don't you address the real issue?
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Old 07-22-2011, 11:04 PM   #102 (permalink)
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there are plenty of homeless cats and dogs for that matter. but homeless people can take care of the homeless pets. or maybe hunt them for food. homeless people forming tribes in the woods along side the interstate, hunting ferrel cats and dogs...sounds like "the hills have eyes"

why do taxes need to be thought of as this heinous punitive thing ? this forced handout to the lazy and well, the part of the herd that might as well be trimmed ?

why wouldn't you think of it as a yearly user fee for this cool club you get to live at ? a place with sweet roads and trains, nice parks, schools for your kids, you know, a cool place to be ? I mean this cool place you get to live doesn't stop at your driveway. it's just your door to the community, city state and country you get to live in. it was built mostly by previous generations who paid more "club fees" than we do now...
I love my city, I don't use alot of the parks, libraries or other public things I pay for in it but I'm glad it's there and I don't mind that I chip in on it.
now if I had alot more money I could afford the time to use and see alot more in my city.


why would you think you can shrink government while your population and economy is constantly growing ?
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Old 07-23-2011, 05:24 AM   #103 (permalink)
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Obama cant negotiate/leverage with a group that says "no" to anything he proposes, even if it's what they want. Having a majority doesn't matter when the minority manipulates the rules to filibuster anything they don't like.

Mitch McConnell frankly stated that the Republican's number one priority was to make Obama a one term president. Think about that. Number one priority? So fuck the unemployed, fuck the uninsured, fuck the world economy....all we care about us getting this guy out if office.

Remember their 2010 campaign of job creation? Know how many job bills the House has authored since the midterms?

It's all games....party before country.

Today's GOP is the greatest threat to America in my lifetime
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Old 07-23-2011, 07:45 AM   #104 (permalink)
 
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so it is of no consequence what tea party obstructionists claim for themselves, the fatuous arguments that they make. those arguments "from principle" enable the republicans to have a fall guy in case the polls continue to trend as they have been and the gop takes the hit for manufacturing this debt ceiling "crisis" and then using it to play chicken with the international standing of the united states at a period of economic crisis transnationally and fading imperial power insofar as the u.s. is concerned. it is of no consequence except to maybe the 10% of the population who is still able to confuse ayn rand with a philosopher and friedman with a viable economic theorist and neo-liberalism with something other than class warfare. so let them gibber to themselves.

i am one of those people on the left, such as it is, this fragmented places that talks alot but can't seem to organize and not the make-believe left that the neo-fascist set projects in order to normalize it's veer to the right by framing it as reactive, i am one of those people who is deeply disappointed in obama primarily because he has not offered a vision of what the state can and should be doing independently of the bilge that flows from the right. if job creation is a real priority, make it one--construct programs with actual concrete goals and put them into effect....fuck the right. they've had their day and that day is over.
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Old 07-23-2011, 07:59 AM   #105 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Baraka_Guru View Post
How rational would it be to pass a bill on the debt ceiling without addressing anything else? It would be like green-lighting new credit without stipulating how that credit is to be used. It woud be like a blank cheque...but debt.
The debt limit is totally meaningless.

1) If Congress commits to spending money, that commitment has been made regardless of some arbitrary debt ceiling.

2) The movement of actual debt based on spending commitments is not restrained by arbitrary debt ceilings or borrowing caps.

3) Is there any person on this planet that seriously believes that the US will actually default on debt or not pay social security benefits or not pay the military?

4) The President is Constitutionally obligated to pay the nation's obligations.

Given the above the whole debt ceiling issue is theater. The real fight is not the debt ceiling. The debt ceiling is being used by both sides to press a political agenda. Yes, democrats and Obama have a political agenda. And yes they are as inflexible up to this point as Republicans.

Quote:
No. How preposterous. Why is it that you come up with these silly ideas or stories whenever we talk about things you disagree with?
Why is what I presented preposterous but singling out people who own a successful business is not? Seems to me it is simply a matter of perspective.

Quote:
Do you ever see me going on about how it would be great if we could cut spending by replacing the military's munitions with purple glitter paintballs?

Why don't you address the real issue?
The real issue is spending not tax rates.

---------- Post added at 03:51 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:48 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by boink View Post
why do taxes need to be thought of as this heinous punitive thing ?
In my view they don't have to be. Obama is the one who wants to use the tax code for things like redistribution, social engineering, and punishing certain types of behavior. Taxes should be reflective of the real costs to society, nothing more and nothing less in my view.

---------- Post added at 03:59 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:51 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Derwood View Post
Obama cant negotiate/leverage with a group that says "no" to anything he proposes, even if it's what they want.
Hence, we are in the situation we are in. The Tea Party with no real power was able to obtain the leverage. Poll after poll allegedly shows the public supports Obama. Most of the media reports positively reflect Obama's view. It is obvious that people won't let the US default, they have said it. Yet it is the President who can not get a deal done. Sounds like incompetence to me. Obama is clearly in over his head. Democrats should have selected Clinton. We kind of know what she would do, at least through Bill he stated what he would do, press the issue by ignoring the debt limit and have Congress challenge him in court. And he has been there before.
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Old 07-23-2011, 08:06 AM   #106 (permalink)
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How is it incompetence when the opposition SAYS NO TO EVERYTHING?

You don't negotiate with terrorists or traitors. The GOP is both
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Old 07-23-2011, 08:22 AM   #107 (permalink)
 
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tea party rule one: never agree to anything not proposed by a conservative.

tea party rule two: never accept the slightest responsibility for your actions.

tea party rule three: talk alot about responsibility in your markety market fantasy scenarios, hedged round with arbitrary declarations

e.g. ("the real issue is spending"---horseshit. to the extent there is an issue here, it follows from rightwing lunatic views of taxation and ill-considered tax cuts that have produced NONE of the outcomes promised by the gospel of crackpot economics but no matter they still believe they still believe...)

tea party rule four: obstruct. derail.

tea party rule five: never accept responsibility for your own actions.

tea party rule six: never accept responsibility for incoherence in your own positions.

tea party rule seven: talk anyway. blah blah blah. anyone can do it. seriously. **anyone** can do it.

tea party rule eight: refuse to consider what democracy actually would entail. that's ike putting a gun in your mouth to see if it's loaded. learn not to like democracy very much. prefer feudalism. be a slave.

tea party rule nine: never accept responsibility.

tea party rule ten: never accept responsibility.
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Old 07-23-2011, 08:49 AM   #108 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aceventura3 View Post
The debt limit is totally meaningless.

1) If Congress commits to spending money, that commitment has been made regardless of some arbitrary debt ceiling.

2) The movement of actual debt based on spending commitments is not restrained by arbitrary debt ceilings or borrowing caps.

3) Is there any person on this planet that seriously believes that the US will actually default on debt or not pay social security benefits or not pay the military?

4) The President is Constitutionally obligated to pay the nation's obligations.

Given the above the whole debt ceiling issue is theater. The real fight is not the debt ceiling. The debt ceiling is being used by both sides to press a political agenda. Yes, democrats and Obama have a political agenda. And yes they are as inflexible up to this point as Republicans.
If the debt limit were totally meaningless, why don't they just drop the issue? What's with all the emergency meetings and talk of default and economic disaster?

I know what you think of the debt ceiling. But it's there. It can't be meaningless because it's there. If they don't raise it, they either default or break the law.

Maybe that's what Republicans really want: a lose-lose situation for Obama: break the law or violate the Constitution.

Classy.

Quote:
Why is what I presented preposterous but singling out people who own a successful business is not? Seems to me it is simply a matter of perspective.
First, the cat tax thing isn't an issue. Is it in the budget? Is it an idea put forth by members of Congress? Are they talking about purple glitter paint as well?

Why won't you comment on my purple glitter paint?

Second, what are you referring to exactly when you mentioned singling out people who own a successful business? Are you referring to something I posted earlier? Could you point this out to me?

Quote:
The real issue is spending not tax rates.
So why are the Republicans adamantly against the tax changes when the spending cuts are where they're supposed to be? What's so wrong with closing loopholes, etc., if it will help make cutting spending that much easier? Are you a proponent of loopholes?

Quote:
In my view they don't have to be. Obama is the one who wants to use the tax code for things like redistribution, social engineering, and punishing certain types of behavior. Taxes should be reflective of the real costs to society, nothing more and nothing less in my view.
I suppose it's a matter of whether you are more willing to accept these things over, say, class warfare, plutocracy, and continued Republican-supported corporate welfare and nanny statism. What's the lesser of two "evils"? Maybe the one that costs more money whether through spending or lost revenue.

Who has historically been better at reducing deficits? Republicans? Democrats? Who should we be listening to?

The Republicans are strong-arming their wants and are unwilling to compromise. Obama has compromised to the point of alienating much of his own party, and yet it still isn't enough even though the cuts have gone beyond what Republicans wanted at first.

Tax reform isn't a communist tactic.
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Old 07-23-2011, 09:10 AM   #109 (permalink)
 
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the tea party is ace on a national scale. a whole riot of them. when obama compromised they tried to change what they had been asking for. o wait---that's ok? we don't want that any more. we're ideologically pure. we have sophistries that "prove" the "real issue" is spending and not the consequences of exactly the approach to taxes that we still endorse. so what if tax cuts don't produce what's promised? so what if our theory has no predictive value? what is a theory? for us, a theory is a something that we like. we like it so we repeat it. we will continue to say the same thing over and over again as if by repeating it the lunacy of what we are saying will go away. because we believe. we believe. wait. that's ok? we didn't want that. we never wanted that. we wanted something else. this now. we want this now. we have always wanted this. the past? what past? we are here. we believe. we like believing. let us repeat.
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Old 07-23-2011, 09:20 AM   #110 (permalink)
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Yes, comrade, that seems to be the way of it.

I think I'm with Derwood: The Republican Party coupled with Tea Party influence is the gravest threat facing American society today.
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Old 07-23-2011, 09:25 AM   #111 (permalink)
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wait. that's ok? we didn't want that. we never wanted that. we wanted something else. this now. we want this now. we have always wanted this. the past? what past? we are here. we believe. we like believing. let us repeat.
we have always been at war with Eastasia
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Old 07-24-2011, 07:24 AM   #112 (permalink)
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Well, it looks like the Republicans are prepared to move back into their patented unilateral mode—so says Boehner to Fox:

Quote:
House Republicans Prepared to Act Alone on Debt Plan, Boehner Says
Published July 24, 2011
| FoxNews.com

House Speaker John Boehner told "Fox News Sunday" that he's trying to put together a "framework" to deal with the deficit and debt ceiling by the end of the day Sunday, and that if Democrats won't sign on, the GOP will move forward unilaterally.

Boehner said he'd prefer to strike a bipartisan agreement with the other side of the aisle to both cut the deficit and raise the debt ceiling. But he said it's "too early to decide whether that's possible."

"I would prefer to have a bipartisan approach to solve this problem. If that's not possible, I and my Republican colleagues in the House are prepared to move on their own ... today," Boehner said.

The speaker walked away from White House-led talks Friday, accusing the president of pressing too hard for tax hikes. The next step, he said, is to craft a package modeled after the one that passed out of the House this past week. That plan, though, was widely opposed by Democrats who described its prescribed cuts as too drastic.

While Boehner said Sunday he's focused on "what's do-able at the 11th hour," it's unclear how he might bridge the gap between the parties on anything modeled after Republicans' "cut, cap and balance" plan. The Senate already killed that plan once, and President Obama vowed to veto the original.

On a separate track, Boehner said his last offer remains "on the table."

Under that plan, Boehner acknowledged he had agreed to $800 billion in new revenue over the next decade -- combined with spending cuts and other changes worth far more than that.

Boehner insisted the $800 billion would come from a broadened tax base and not from any tax increase. "It was not raising taxes," he said, no doubt mindful of House conservatives' stiff opposition to anything that resembles a tax hike.

What shattered the talks, Boehner said, was a White House demand to weave $400 billion in additional revenue into the package.

At that point, Boehner said, "it was time for me to step back." He said he never took his last offer off the table, but added: "It may be pretty hard to put Humpty Dumpty back together again."

A White House official disputed Boehner's version of events. The official said the president asked for, but did not demand, $400 billion in additional revenue.

As both sides challenge each other's narratives over what went wrong, they continue to face an Aug. 2 deadline to strike a deal. The Obama administration says the country will face default after that date if the debt ceiling is not raised.

While Boehner said lawmakers are going to have to work on a "two-stage process" in the days ahead, the Obama administration has forcefully opposed any short-term deal that does not raise the debt ceiling through the next election.

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner told "Fox News Sunday" that such a stopgap "makes no sense."
House Republicans Prepared to Act Alone on Debt Plan, Boehner Says - FoxNews.com
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Old 07-24-2011, 01:26 PM   #113 (permalink)
 
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the british business secretary today said that the "rightwing nutters" in the u.s. are a greater threat to the global economy that the problems with the euro:

Vince Cable attacks 'rightwing nutters' over US debt ceiling talks | Politics | guardian.co.uk
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Old 07-24-2011, 01:47 PM   #114 (permalink)
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There those Republicans go, wrecking the world again.

Before they make any final decisions, they should at least ask: What would Reagan do?

Ronald Reagan Myth Doesn't Square with Reality - Political Hotsheet - CBS News
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Old 07-25-2011, 08:18 AM   #115 (permalink)
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How is it incompetence when the opposition SAYS NO TO EVERYTHING?
How can one tell when a person(S) is talking sh*t? You call them on it. In context, the Tea Party people have not really said "no" to anything. Obama should have put a simple bill on the table to have the debt limit raised, and make everyone vote. If they vote "no" then it is easy to use that vote along with other things as leverage. If they vote "yes", Obama may have gotten what he wanted, assuming that is what he wanted.

That is just one of an infinite number of strategies Obama could have used to gain leverage.

Quote:
You don't negotiate with terrorists or traitors. The GOP is both
In one of Obama's press conferences he used the word "Armageddon" to describe August 3, 2011. Think about that! On the most obvious level you have put your trust and faith in a leader who does not have a functional plan B.

Outside of that, let's assume I am the Tea Party and you are Obama.

You say, 8/3/11 is the drop dead date.
I say, I don't believe you.
Then what....?
Why wouldn't I take a hardline and wait??? It is you who thinks 8/3/11 is the end of the world not me. I think the sun will shine and the birds will sing, old people will get paid, China will get paid, and no one will die because the FDA has to "make some arrangements".

It is Obama who set the stage for where we are.

---------- Post added at 03:31 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:26 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by roachboy View Post
tea party rule one: never agree to anything not proposed by a conservative.
You left one out and actually it is number one.

Tea Party Rule #1: Make sure Obama is a one term President. It is Obama who is at the root of the biggest proportional increase in government and government spending in the history of this nation.

---------- Post added at 04:08 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:31 PM ----------

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Originally Posted by Baraka_Guru View Post
If the debt limit were totally meaningless, why don't they just drop the issue? What's with all the emergency meetings and talk of default and economic disaster?
Political theater. Republican have an agenda and the threat of default plays into their agenda. Democrats have an agenda and the threat of default plays into their agenda. Media has an agenda and the threat of default plays into their agenda.

Quote:
I know what you think of the debt ceiling. But it's there. It can't be meaningless because it's there. If they don't raise it, they either default or break the law.
When law is in conflict, break the law is inevitable. The role of our third branch of government is as important as the other two.

Quote:
Maybe that's what Republicans really want: a lose-lose situation for Obama: break the law or violate the Constitution.
I doubt any member of Congress want to abdicate more power to the Executive branch of government. I think that is why they are working around the clock to meet this made up deadline.

Quote:
Classy.
Winning trumps class.

Quote:
First, the cat tax thing isn't an issue. Is it in the budget? Is it an idea put forth by members of Congress? Are they talking about purple glitter paint as well?
No they are talking about depreciating private jets over 7 years rather than 5. What that means is that the guy/corp. that owns a jet (rather than a cat) will face responding to dumb tax policy (again my view is taxes should be related to actual costs to society). For example all other things being equal the net result is that the government collects taxes sooner there will not be a net increase in "revenues". Then if the number of jets being put into service goes down because people/corp hold on to their jets longer (perhaps 2 years longer), the net revenues may actually go down.

The point of using cats in the analogy had nothing to do with cats. You could substitute any number of legitimate words for "cat" and meaning illustrated stays the same. I think you see that, yet you act like you don't...Why?

Quote:
Why won't you comment on my purple glitter paint?
They might as well be talking about purple glitter paint, perhaps they are. In either case nothing has happened. I repeat, Obama and Democrats have not put anything specific up for a vote. Until they do, I think I will make the assumption that they are in fact talking about purple glitter paint.

Have you purchased a new car? At least in the US, there is this game that they play. At one point you make an offer, they make a counter, you make another offer, then the guy goes back to talk to is "sales manager" because you are really busting his b@lls on this...he goes back (takes about 15 minutes, because he has to really fight for you to get this deal) but he actually goes into the back office and he and his "sales manager" spend about a minute approving the deal and about 14 talking about "purple glitter paint".

Quote:
Second, what are you referring to exactly when you mentioned singling out people who own a successful business? Are you referring to something I posted earlier? Could you point this out to me?
I am referring to Obama's economic view of "taxing the rich" and eliminating loop holes like depreciating a jet over 5 years rather than 7. On the jet issue, the irony is that a jet may have a useful life measured in decades, and anything less than the jets actual depreciation is a subsidy. the subsidy doesn't actually go away, does it? Obama when he talks about this stuff is laughable, he might well be talking about cats because he comes across as clueless.

Quote:
So why are the Republicans adamantly against the tax changes when the spending cuts are where they're supposed to be? What's so wrong with closing loopholes, etc., if it will help make cutting spending that much easier? Are you a proponent of loopholes?
No, close the loopholes, but do it for real. We need to totally re-write our tax code. Thinking it can be done in a few weeks under the threat of 'Armageddon" is another joke. Perhaps we elected a comedian rather than a President.

Quote:
Who has historically been better at reducing deficits? Republicans? Democrats? Who should we be listening to?
I think we should ask better questions. Only then will we get the truth from anyone or any party.

For example, has anyone ever asked Obama if there is an alternative to simply not paying the nation's obligations starting on 8/2/11? There are alternatives. The key is asking the right questions.

Quote:
The Republicans are strong-arming their wants and are unwilling to compromise.
I don't understand your point. If I say I don't support something, how do I compromise? I can my position be perceived as anything other than "strong-arming" if you disagree?

I say not tax increases. In context I primarily say that because I don't believe the other side will actually cut and control spending. I say cut and control spending and after you demonstrate that I can trust you on the issue the come back to me and I may be more open to tax increases.

---------- Post added at 04:13 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:08 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by roachboy View Post
the british business secretary today said that the "rightwing nutters" in the u.s. are a greater threat to the global economy that the problems with the euro:
What is the yeild on ten year treasuries this morning? Less than 3%? What was it a year ago? Less than 3%? What will it be next week? Less than 3%? What will it be 8/3/12? I am betting right around 3%, but no more than 5% - and any change won't have anything to do with what they do in Washington between now an 8/2/11 because at the end of the day they will have done nothing of any real significance.

---------- Post added at 04:18 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:13 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by roachboy View Post
the tea party is ace on a national scale.
Thanks for the compliment. I will gladly represent the Tea Party point of view on TFP.

At this point I say, do nothing until after 8/2/11. Let's see what happens. At the very least the Fed could sell bonds on the open market (opposite of QE1 and QE2) and return the cash to the Treasury or just move the cash to member banks on behalf of the US government so they don't bounce any checks.
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Old 07-25-2011, 08:45 AM   #116 (permalink)
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The Tea Party would have just loved for Obama to simply ask to raise the debt ceiling, no strings attached.

Obama is both the cause of and the impediment to remedying the financial crisis.

Winning is everything, compromise means losing.

The Democrats The Gang of Six Obama is wrong, the Republicans Tea Party is right.

Did I miss anything, ace?
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Old 07-25-2011, 08:56 AM   #117 (permalink)
 
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ace, dear, that a sociopath can rationalize being a sociopath doesn't make the sociopath any less a sociopath.


no-one in their right mind points to the relative stability of bond yields right now to demonstrate anything beyond the fact that investors in the main expect that this sociopathic game of chicken the right is playing will ultimately resolve.

i assume that what we'll see, should this stupid, unnecessary game come undone, is a concerted offensive from the right media apparatus to reframe it as somehow obama's fault. but no-one is fooled. no-one at all. approval ratings for the republicans are hovering at about 20% now. this happens and the right is fucked.

there's a side of me that is looking forward to laughing as the tea party nutcases drive straight into a wall, saying all the way into it that there is no wall.


o, and trust me, ace, there was nothing complimentary in my saying that the tea party is ace on a national scale. nothing whatsoever.
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Old 07-25-2011, 09:29 AM   #118 (permalink)
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The reason that there is stability in treasuries is this: nobody thinks the people in charge are stupid enough to let the US default. That will change if the tea party has its way. Nobody knows what will happen then. We can be pretty sure that yields will jump, though, because investors will likely no longer be willing to assume that there isn't default risk in treasuries. This will immediately reduce the value of a whole bunch of existing bonds and increase the cost of doing business for a whole lot of people.
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Old 07-25-2011, 09:38 AM   #119 (permalink)
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Well you do have the likes of Ron Paul suggesting it's the better of two options to default.

Default Now, or Suffer a More Expensive Crisis Later: Ron Paul - Bloomberg
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Old 07-25-2011, 09:47 AM   #120 (permalink)
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Ya, default now or keep putting it off until tomorrow when it will be catastrophic.
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