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Two Followup Stories On Taxes

[ Posted Thursday, December 13th, 2012 – 17:42 PST ]

Two stories on taxes caught my eye today, so this column will really just point you to these two bits of news, with only a few peripheral comments. Just to prepare you in advance.

Earlier this week, I suggested some reasonable ways to restore a modicum of fairness to the tax code. One of the responses I got asked about the dollar amounts some of these taxes might bring in -- in other words, challenging me to make a stronger case by adding "...which will bring in X billion dollars in revenue over the next ten years" to the taxes I was calling for.

Well, ask and ye shall receive, at least on one of them. Adding a small transactions tax to speculative financial transactions (0.25 percent is the figure most often suggested) could raise quite a bit of money, it turns out.

The story, over at the Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting site, details how there has been a virtual blackout on this story in the media. Now, righties like to use the term "liberal media" and lefties like to decry Fox News for being partisan, but the more shrewd way to look at our media is through a corporate lens. This is the only reasonable explanation as to why this suggested tax has been all but frozen out of the corporate media outlets.

But while the story mostly focuses on the media's shortcomings, it does include some hard data:

The idea has been discussed among activists and economists, especially since the financial crash. Such a tax could raise between $170-$350 billion annually, according to the Center for Economic & Policy Research (CEPR) and the Political Economy Research Institute. An analysis of the bill written by Rep. Peter DeFazio of Oregon and Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin found it could generate a more modest $353 billion over 10 years. Aside from the revenue argument, proponents argue that it could serve as a check on some of the riskier forms of high-frequency, high-volume trading.

That's a pretty wide window of projections -- an order of magnitude, in fact. Even so, the prospect of raising between $353 billion and $3.5 trillion over ten years is nothing to sneeze at. That's a significant amount of money, even in Washington. Raising the money with such a tax would make the math easier for the grand bargaining currently going on between President Obama and Speaker Boehner. So perhaps it's at least worth a mention, eh?

The second story is an interesting one, because it also has been subject to a complete blackout in the news, for the most part. Democrats have only themselves to blame for this one, since they are the ones who should be mentioning it every time they appear before the cameras.

Right before the elections, the Congressional Research Service -- a non-partisan group -- put together a report on the relationship between high taxes on the wealthy and economic growth. Looking over tax rates and economic growth since World War II, the study found "negligible effect on economic growth" from a small rate change for the wealthiest Americans.

Got that? Instead of partisan ideology, the Congressional Research Service looked at the data and found that higher tax rates do not affect economic growth much, if at all. To put this another way, this yanks the rug out from under a major Republican argument in the whole battle over taxes.

Of course, this only works if Democrats actually make the argument -- loudly, and publicly. "Actually, I have to disagree with my Republican colleague. Research from Congress' own non-partisan research office showed quite plainly that a modest raise in income tax rates on the wealthiest Americans does not impact economic growth at all, or if so, only negligibly. That is the truth of the matter. That is what the data show. Lower tax rates for the upper-income ranks only increase income equality -- they do not stifle economic growth. This is proven by the last sixty years of history."

I'm waiting to see someone make that argument in a television interview, personally.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

103 Comments on “Two Followup Stories On Taxes”

  1. [1] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Lower tax rates for the upper-income ranks only increase income equality -- they do not stifle economic growth. This is proven by the last sixty years of history."

    I'm waiting to see someone make that argument in a television interview, personally.

    At the risk of sounding like a bad broken record, this is the argument that Secretary Geithner has been making for the last four years, in speeches, debates, interviews and even the odd congressional hearing.

    Unfortunately, the cogent arguments he makes seem to fall on the deaf ears of Republicans who are nothing if not still persistently stuck on the same old and failed ideas and strategies that they apparently always have been.

    Maybe it would make a difference if everyone who is anyone in the administration would keep making these arguments and call out the asinine nonsense coming out of the Republican cult of economic failure on this issue, among others, at every available opportunity. Messaging, messaging, messaging ...

    But, even if all Democrats made this argument all the time, it probably wouldn't stop the nonsense coming from the congressional Republicans.

  2. [2] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Here is a link to a speech by Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner at the Center for American Progress on the topic of a pro-growth strategy on tax and fiscal policy. The short speech is followed by a debate between Geithner and a Republican, Douglas Holtz-Eakin, president of the center-right think tank, American Action Forum.

    From the website ... Geithner attacked the idea that letting tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans expire would hurt small businesses, saying, “This is a political argument masquerading as substance.”

    http://www.americanprogress.org/events/2010/08/04/16984/live-webcast-secretary-timothy-f-geithner-on-a-pro-growth-strategy-on-tax-and-fiscal-policy/

  3. [3] 
    Michale wrote:

    Now, righties like to use the term "liberal media" and lefties like to decry Fox News for being partisan, but the more shrewd way to look at our media is through a corporate lens.

    Com'on, CW..

    Don't do David's job for him! :D

    Michale
    0374

  4. [4] 
    Michale wrote:

    So much focus on taxes..

    Let's talk about the White Elephant in the room..

    The Orgasmic Spending of the Democrats...

    {{chhiiiirrrrrppppp}} {{ccccchhhhiiiirrrrrrppppp}}

    Michale
    0375

  5. [5] 
    akadjian wrote:

    The second story is an interesting one, because it also has been subject to a complete blackout in the news, for the most part.

    Yeah ... Where is that "liberal" media?

    I keep waiting for them to publish something liberal.

    Michty (who seems to have an excellent knack for cutting through bullshit, btw) hit the nail on the head when he said, why not examine the problem and then look for ways to solve it.

    This is what I would like to see in the corporate media.

    Instead what you see is the "infotainment story" about the completely boring Coke/Pepsi Democrat/Republican "fight" or what amounts to paid advertisements from one side or the other. With one side seemingly being able to pay a whole lot more.

    -David

  6. [6] 
    Michale wrote:

    Michty (who seems to have an excellent knack for cutting through bullshit, btw) hit the nail on the head when he said, why not examine the problem and then look for ways to solve it.

    The problem with that approach is that ya'all are looking at the cause thru the lens of a political ideologue..

    You START from the position that Republicans are evil incarnate and Democrats are pure as the driven snow and then move on from there..

    In computer terms, it's called GIGO

    Garbage In, Garbage Out

    Michale....
    0379

  7. [7] 
    Michale wrote:

    The problem with that approach is that ya'all are looking at the cause thru the lens of a political ideologue..

    Michty's cartoon is a perfect example...

    It shows the GOP as the hostage takers when, in reality, it's the Democrats that are the hostage takers..

    GOP has already signaled they will take some higher taxes.. DEM has responded with silence on cutting spending...

    So, it's actually the Democrats that are taking hostages..

    Michale
    0380

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    Michty's cartoon is a fallacy for another reason..

    It has the reporter representing the MSM saying "They're both at fault"...

    NO ONE in the MSM is saying "they are both at fault"..

    You have FoxNews saying it's the Democrats fault and you have all the other MSM outlets saying it's the Republican's fault...

    Fortunately, one American is smarter than the whole of the MSM combined. And Americans know where the fault lies...

    Except, of course, those blinded and enslaved by Party ideology...

    Michale
    0381

  9. [9] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Hmmm ...

    We say "Let's look at an objective analysis and look for ways to solve the problem."

    You retort: "Liberal!!!!"

    And accuse us of being partisan.

    Hmmm ... GIGO ... an interesting term

    -David

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    We say "Let's look at an objective analysis and look for ways to solve the problem."

    That's just it..

    Ya'all are NOT saying that..

    Ya'all are STARTING from the position that it's lack of taxes that is the problem and then analyze from that faulty conclusion...

    You start from the position that it's the GOP's fault, that spending is not an issue and THEN you begin your analysis.

    A classic GIGO scenario...

    You want evidence???

    Read back over the comments of the last week..

    With the exception of the Grand Poobah, has ANYONE made the comment that the Democrats could be wrong about somethings.

    Nope.. Not a SINGLE one...

    You need MORE evidence??

    NO ONE here believes that spending cuts should be on the table...

    NO ONE here has taken the Democrats to task for not putting spending cuts on table..

    If you want an objective analysis, for chreest's sake, BE OBJECTIVE...

    Michale
    0382

  11. [11] 
    michty6 wrote:

    CW,
    I like the idea of the transaction tax because it makes up for the fact that some of the trading that goes on adds to little to society. Some of these people aren't 'job creators' or running businesses or doing anything really (see Romney, Mitt). They are shifting money around for the sake of shifting money around to try and exploit 'loopholes' (in arbitrage or timing or financial regulation) to make money for themselves (usually at the expense of others). I once saw Warren Buffet say something like (paraphrasing) 'I just lucky to have been born into a society that over-values and over-pays commodity traders ridiculous sums of money' (I'll try and find the exact quote).

    The only place I saw the CEPR report mentioned was Huffpo. Surprise, surprise. But convincing Republicans that Trickle Down doesn't work is like trying to convince a tea party fanatic that Obama was born in America. Fact, logic and rational thought go out the window ;) If you bring up a non-partisan report they will instantly claim it is partisan and part of the 'liberal media'. This is the beauty of the world Fox has created - EVERYTHING that destroys their arguments is merely liberal media bias! This is why the election was so horrifying for Republicans this year as reality smacked them in the face...

    Michale,
    The problem with that approach is that ya'all are looking at the cause thru the lens of a political ideologue..

    Not really. The facts for how the deficit was created are pretty clear and straight-forward. It is not the 'liberal media' presenting these facts but the CBO. It is just that Republicans, as usual, want to deny reality. And Democrats, as usual, are too chicken-shit to bother telling people that really ending the tax cuts for those earning >$250k is just the tip of the iceberg and they seem to be far too chicken-shit to dare proposing cutting the largest, most over-blown piece of Government that created the deficit in the last 10 years (military).

    I actually think that some Democrats, who want military cuts, want to go over the cliff because then they get military cuts but also get to blame Republicans!

    PS. I don't think David was referring to my cartoon which was clearly posted in jest!

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    Not really. The facts for how the deficit was created are pretty clear and straight-forward.

    To someone looking thru the ideologue lens, I am sure it seems that way..

    To those who are politically agnostic and can see BOTH sides, not so much...

    The idea that the SOLE problem is lack of taxes and the orgasmic spending has NOTHING to do with it is laughable and really beneath the intelligence level here in Weigantia...

    Michale
    0383

  13. [13] 
    michty6 wrote:

    To someone looking thru the ideologue lens, I am sure it seems that way..

    To those who are politically agnostic and can see BOTH sides, not so much...

    The idea that the SOLE problem is lack of taxes and the orgasmic spending has NOTHING to do with it is laughable and really beneath the intelligence level here in Weigantia...

    I think you need to rephrase 'orgasmic spending' as 'orgasmic spending (but not the military, no - not in anyway no no no no no lalalalalalallala)'

    Again: the facts on how your deficit was created are pretty clear. If you REALLY want to bring Partisan politics into it, which you appear to do, then you can argue who is to blame for the (1) Economic conditions (2) Tax cuts and (3) Crazy military spending that caused the deficit. There is a partisan element there if you really want it.

    But to argue that these 3 things did not cause >80% of your deficit is to ignore simple black and white facts.

  14. [14] 
    michty6 wrote:

    NO ONE here believes that spending cuts should be on the table...

    NO ONE here has taken the Democrats to task for not putting spending cuts on table.

    You are completely BLIND. Read my comments IN THIS THREAD lol.

  15. [15] 
    Michale wrote:

    Crazy military spending that caused the deficit.

    Like I said.. A political ideologue...

    It's only the MILITARY spending that caused the issues...

    Obama's trillions and trillions of NON MILITARY SPENDING was absolutely not a problem...

    I find it fascinating that you don't even see how partisan you are...

    Talk about tunnel vision...

    Michale
    0384

  16. [16] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Obama's trillions and trillions of NON MILITARY SPENDING was absolutely not a problem...

    I find it fascinating that you don't even see how partisan you are...

    Loooool I've bolded to show you the hypocrisy/irony in your post.

    But no, they are not a problem. Obama made no significant changes to non military spending. Non-military spending levels have remained CONSTANT over the last 10 years; military spending levels have SKY-ROCKETED.

    Again: this is simple black and white fact. There is no 'partisan' ideology here. I blame Obama for increasing military spending (although I blame Bush more). It is only when you assign blame that something becomes partisan. The fact that military spending has risen significantly, while non-military spending hasn't risen by as much is just that - fact.

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    But no, they are not a problem. Obama made no significant changes to non military spending.

    This is why it's impossible to have a discussion with you..

    You simply deny reality and the facts...

    Michale
    0387

  18. [18] 
    akadjian wrote:

    You are completely BLIND. Read my comments IN THIS THREAD lol.

    Now I would take issue with this analysis, michty :)

    I believe Michale is actually quite smart about his tactics. I think he completely understands the analysis and just chooses to ignore it.

    I think what he's betting on is that propaganda, money, and tactics will win the day for conservatives. These tactics include liberal baiting, noise, and using their large advantage in funding to ram through their messaging.

    And here, it would be hard to disagree with him. It's worked for corporate conservatives for decades.

    To the point that ...
    - The media is always afraid to appear biased (unless it's conservative bias)
    - Some million+ odd people believe in absolutely insane claims like Obama not being a U.S. citizen
    - Ayn Rand is being discussed seriously
    - Our tax code is wildly skewed towards the wealthy
    - Our military is grossly disproportionate to what's needed
    - Etc, etc, etc

    To an outsider, it almost has to look like our country has gone completely batshit.

    However, it's worked to bring a certain kind of people into power and keep them there.

    Now the good news is that it doesn't seem to be working as well as it used to. Case #1: the recent election.

    However, the belief seems to persist that if you create enough noise and spend enough on getting your own message through the noise, you will succeed.

    But I'm pretty sure Michale understands all of this rather than being blind. Plus, I'm pretty sure he enjoys the tactic of liberal baiting.

    If you consider his comments as tactics rather than any type of logical discussion then I think you start to understand Michale.

    Which you likely do anyways ... but it's fun to yammer on about.

    An interesting situation, no?

    -David

    p.s. BTW, me ... it just gives me something to do to distract me from work.

  19. [19] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Michale,
    This is why it's impossible to have a discussion with you..

    You simply deny reality and the facts...

    I could not have put it any better myself. Arguing with you is like arguing with a person who believe that 'unicorn spending' is the biggest reason why America has a deficit. Again the FACTS:

    Military spending in 2000 = $280b
    Military spending in 2011 = $690b

    Now let's look at the 'entitlement program' that Republicans feel is the no.1 thing to cut ($600t in cuts to this alone in their 'fiscal abyss' proposal to Obama this month) as a comparison:

    Medicare spending in 2000 = $219b
    Medicare spending in 2011 = $524b

    So the US is spending LESS on Medicare than on it's military. But wait it's even worse: Medicare has it's own direct, funding through the payroll tax. There is no 'military tax' applied (A good idea perhaps? If people actually had to directly pay for their wars, then they might not be so GOP loving...)

    So answer this Michale, why is Medicare the NUMBER 1 PROGRAM on the list of things to cut, with literally ZERO DOLLARS in cuts to military spending (even though military spending is (a) higher and (b) not directly funded like Medicare)?

  20. [20] 
    michty6 wrote:

    * Sorry that should have been $600b in cuts lol at $600t

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    - Our military is grossly disproportionate to what's needed

    And your evidence for this is....??????

    The idea that Obama has not increased non-military spending is laughable and I am surprised ANYONE let's Michty get away with such blatant unreality..

    It's as if Porkulus, Porkulus II, Auto Bailout, Solar Energy bankruptcies never happened..

    Am I in an alternate reality where those things did NOT occur???

    Michale
    0388

  22. [22] 
    Michale wrote:

    Military spending in 2000 = $280b
    Military spending in 2011 = $690b

    Hmmmmmm What could have happened between 2000 and 2011 that might account for military spending..

    Hmmm What could it be??

    I know it's right there on the tip of my tongue..

    {smirk}....

    Tell ya what, michty...

    Why don't you leave military matters to those who know military matters...

    So answer this Michale, why is Medicare the NUMBER 1 PROGRAM on the list of things to cut, with literally ZERO DOLLARS in cuts to military spending (even though military spending is (a) higher and (b) not directly funded like Medicare)?

    This is why you should leave military matters to those who know military matters.. You wouldn't have to ask such dumb questions..

    Because a strong military is required in this day and age... Much more so than healthy senior citizens...

    I know it sounds harsh... But it is the way it is....

    You can't send healthy geriatrics into battle...

    And anyone who has served will tell you the exact same thing...

    Michale
    0389

  23. [23] 
    michty6 wrote:

    The idea that Obama has not increased non-military spending is laughable and I am surprised ANYONE let's Michty get away with such blatant unreality..

    It's as if Porkulus, Porkulus II, Auto Bailout, Solar Energy bankruptcies never happened..

    Lol what on earth have these got to do with entitlement spending??

    Again: Your deficit was not caused by entitlement spending. Fact. Thinking you can solve your deficit by cutting your entitlement spending is like trying to cure someone with an alcohol problem by taking away his cigarettes.

  24. [24] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Hmmmmmm What could have happened between 2000 and 2011 that might account for military spending..

    Hmmm What could it be?

    Really? For the current levels of military spending, I have no idea. You're basically only involved in half a war just now and even that is ending...

    I'd love to hear a 'military perspective' on why the States MUST spend more than EVERY OTHER COUNTRY COMBINED on their military lololol.

    Because a strong military is required in this day and age... Much more so than healthy senior citizens...

    I know it sounds harsh... But it is the way it is.

    Looooooool you have to be kidding. I don't even know where to start on this one. Sometimes you come up with the most insane comments ever!

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    Michty,

    Lol what on earth have these got to do with entitlement spending??

    Once again, you change the wording when you get called on a bogus argument..

    We're not talking about *ENTITLEMENT* spending..

    We're talking about NON MILITARY spending, of which ALL those things I mentioned are a part of...

    So, in other words, you were dead wrong when you claimed that "Obama made no significant changes to non military spending."

    Dead wrong...

    I'd love to hear a 'military perspective' on why the States MUST spend more than EVERY OTHER COUNTRY COMBINED on their military lololol.

    Hello??? {knock knock} Only remaining superpower...

    I don't even know where to start on this one.

    Well, you COULD start with something outrageous, something you have NEVER done before and actually discuss FACTS...

    But I am afraid you might hurt yourself, so I won't ask that of you... :D

    Michale
    0390

  26. [26] 
    akadjian wrote:

    So answer this Michale, why is Medicare the NUMBER 1 PROGRAM on the list of things to cut, with literally ZERO DOLLARS in cuts to military spending (even though military spending is (a) higher and (b) not directly funded like Medicare)?

    This made me think of something interesting.

    Part of the issue why war is so easy is because we just put the entire thing on our credit card.

    Medicare is funded specifically from taxes for Medicare as you point out.

    Now if we were forced to fund all our idiotic wars that way, it would make it a lot tougher to do maybe.

    Interesting ...

    -David

  27. [27] 
    Michale wrote:

    Now if we were forced to fund all our idiotic wars that way, it would make it a lot tougher to do maybe.

    True....

    Of course, when it comes to fight in self-defense, the war would be lost before we could collect up all the "war tax" required...

    Michale
    0391

  28. [28] 
    michty6 wrote:

    So, in other words, you were dead wrong when you claimed that "Obama made no significant changes to non military spending."

    Dead wrong...

    Sorry, you're right I mis-spoke. I should've said "Obama made no significant LONG-TERM changes to non military spending PROGRAMMES, in particular 'entitlements' which Republicans have decided are the magical unicorn that has caused the deficit (ignoring facts and reality)."

    Hello??? {knock knock} Only remaining superpower

    You don't think that if you spent say 25% of the world's military spending you'd still be the only super power lolol.

    Well, you COULD start with something outrageous, something you have NEVER done before and actually discuss FACTS...

    But I am afraid you might hurt yourself, so I won't ask that of you... :D

    Sure you mean facts like:
    - What caused the deficit?
    - How over-inflated the American military budget is?

    Oh wait they're actually part of the same set of facts that you like to conveniently ignore over and over and over and over again...

    David,
    Medicare is funded specifically from taxes for Medicare as you point out.

    Now if we were forced to fund all our idiotic wars that way, it would make it a lot tougher to do maybe.

    Exactly. So not only have Medicare costs increased LESS than the military costs over the last 10 years, but Medicare REVENUE has INCREASED over this same period - so the actual impact on the deficit is MUCH LESS.

    The military on the other hand has seen MASSIVE increases in costs but NO increase in revenue to match this. So it's impact on the deficit is HUGE. i.e. 1 of the 3 biggest factual reasons for the increases in the deficit.

    But of course such facts are COMPLETELY IGNORED. Because it's entitlements (poor/elderly/veterans) that are the problem! Lolololol.

  29. [29] 
    Michale wrote:

    Of course, when it comes to fight in self-defense, the war would be lost before we could collect up all the "war tax" required...

    Or, is it the Democrats' plan to ask the enemy commanders, "Hold up a second.. Give us some time to collect the needed taxes.."</B

    :D

    Michale
    0392

  30. [30] 
    Michale wrote:

    But of course such facts are COMPLETELY IGNORED.

    No, not ignored..

    Just ranked dead last in consideration..

    Which is where they belong..

    You don't run a military based on what's cheapest...

    "You know we're sitting on four million pounds of fuel, one nuclear weapon and a thing that has 270,000 moving parts built by the lowest bidder. Makes you feel good, doesn't it?"
    -Rockhound, ARMAGEDDON

    :D

    You run your military on what's the most effective and then you triple that..

    This is why I say it's better to leave military matters to those who know military matters..

    When you don't, you become a third world country..

    Michale
    0393

  31. [31] 
    Michale wrote:

    Sorry, you're right I mis-spoke. I should've said "Obama made no significant LONG-TERM changes to non military spending PROGRAMMES,

    Nice tap dance...

    You were wrong... :D

    Obama has increased non-military spending by TRILLIONS...

    TRILLIONS.......

    T R I L L I O N S

    Which is funny because Obama said that doing EXACTLY that was... **"UNPATRIOTIC"**

    Michale
    0394

    Michale
    0394

  32. [32] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Michale,
    Kind of getting bored so might disappear again after this. I'll try one more time.

    When you don't, you become a third world country..

    Not really. Many Western countries spend a TENTH of what the US does on the military. Like literally a TENTH of the US military GDP %. And they do just fine.

    Obama has increased non-military spending by TRILLIONS...

    TRILLIONS.......

    Again: no. Name ONE BILL which has increased non-military spending by trillions? Name one Republican budget proposal which counters 'Obama spending'? You can't because ALL the Republican fiscal abyss proposals attack 'entitlements' - of which Obama has changed NOTHING.

    I'll try one last time to explain to you (aside from the video, CBO analysis and Wikipedia stuff I've posted) as to why entitlements have ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with the 3 reasons why the US deficit is so high.

    Let's do a full comparison of Medicare and the Military from 2000 to 2011 and their contributions to the deficit.

    Let's say both Medicare and the military have their own individual Profit and Loss account. The end profit (surplus) or loss (deficit) will be the contribution to the USA surplus/deficit:

    MEDICARE IN 2000
    Revenue = $200b
    Expense = $219b
    Deficit = ($19b)

    MEDICARE IN 2011
    Revenue = $450b
    Expense = $524b
    Deficit = ($74b)

    - So let’s assume the increase from $19b to $74b was spread evenly over these 10 years i.e. every year it went up $5.5b. This means that Medicare contributed $302b to the deficit – note that this is just the ADDITIONAL deficit on top of what they were already contributing in 2000 - since we're only looking at what caused the deficit from 2000 to 2011.

    MILITARY IN 2000
    Revenue = $0b
    Expense = $280b
    Deficit = ($280b)

    MILITARY IN 2011
    Revenue = $0b
    Expense = $690b
    Deficit = ($690b)

    - So, again, let’s assume the increase from $280b to $690b was spread evenly over these 10 years i.e. every year it went up $41b (an assumption that drastically underestimates their cost, but we'll be nice). This means that the military contributed $2.25t to the deficit – again this is just the ADDITIONAL deficit on top of what they were already contributing in 2000, since we're only looking at what it added from 2000 to 2011.

    So the military added something like SEVEN TIMES more to the deficit than Medicare - trillions of dollars whilst ALMOST TRIPLING in cost over this period.

    But naaaaaaaaaaaaah. It’s entitlements that are the problem. LOLOLOLOL.

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    Not really. Many Western countries spend a TENTH of what the US does on the military. Like literally a TENTH of the US military GDP %. And they do just fine.

    Hello?? {knock} {knock} NOT a superpower...

    Again: no. Name ONE BILL which has increased non-military spending by trillions?

    Not just one.. Dozens and dozens..

    Porkulus... Porkulus II.. Auto Bailout... All the Green Crap, most of which went bankrupt...

    And so on and so on and so on..

    TRILLIONS....

    Let's do a full comparison of Medicare and the Military from 2000 to 2011 and their contributions to the deficit.

    Yea.. And then compare Eskimos and Alligators, because THAT would have as much relevance...

    Once again.. You are comparing an atmospheric dome to a health plan for seniors...

    One is needed for the very survival...

    One is not...

    I'll leave it to you to figure out which is which...

    Michale
    0395

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    Kind of getting bored so might disappear again after this. I'll try one more time.

    I hope you mean this, because you'll be purple, hell will have frozen over and pigs will fly before you convince me that a health plan for seniors is more important to the survival of this country than a strong military...

    I know it sounds cold but it IS what it IS..

    And no amount of ignorant comparisons and false equivalences will change that simple fact...

    Michale...
    0396

  35. [35] 
    akadjian wrote:

    I'm just going to post this again because it is fantastic ...

    MEDICARE IN 2000
    Revenue = $200b
    Expense = $219b
    Deficit = ($19b)

    MEDICARE IN 2011
    Revenue = $450b
    Expense = $524b
    Deficit = ($74b)

    MILITARY IN 2000
    Revenue = $0b
    Expense = $280b
    Deficit = ($280b)

    MILITARY IN 2011
    Revenue = $0b
    Expense = $690b
    Deficit = ($690b)

    -David

  36. [36] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yea.. And then compare Eskimos and Alligators, because THAT would have as much relevance...

    "And I will compare and confess Jesus Christ and Spiderman."
    -Robin Williams, LIVE AT THE MET

    :D

    Michale
    0397

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    Some sick SICK people in this world...

    http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2012/12/14/police-respond-to-report-of-school-shooting-in-conn/

    27 Dead, including 18 children.....

    Michale

  38. [38] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Porkulus... Porkulus II.. Auto Bailout... All the Green Crap, most of which went bankrupt...

    And so on and so on and so on..

    TRILLIONS....

    Again: absolutely nothing to do with how the deficit was created. Do you not wonder how you have had none of these expenditures the last 2 years (and the forecast for next year) and you're still running deficits? Or that the Republican fiscal abyss plan mentions NOTHING of these things?

    Again: the facts are clear on how your deficit was created (and continues to exist). Again I'll repeat (1) Economy (2) Taxes (3) Military. You just choose to continue to ignore them.

    Yea.. And then compare Eskimos and Alligators, because THAT would have as much relevance...

    Once again.. You are comparing an atmospheric dome to a health plan for seniors...

    One is needed for the very survival...

    Again: America DOES NOT NEED THE MILITARY TO BE AT IT'S CURRENT SIZE.

    Again: Every single Western country on the planet spends less as a % of GDP on it's military than America.

    Again: It is not the healthcare plan for the elderly that is causing your fiscal problems it is your OVER-INFLATED SPENDING ON MILITARY.

    Again: If you believe the military spending levels MUST be maintained then perhaps you should think about introducing some REVENUE to do so (like the elderly healthcare system, which pays for almost 90% of itself, compared to the military's 0%).

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    You can't put a dollar figure on the benefit a strong military gives us..

    It's simply NOT possible...

    Michale
    0399

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    Again: America DOES NOT NEED THE MILITARY TO BE AT IT'S CURRENT SIZE.

    And it's your vast military knowledge that tells you this???

    Again: If you believe the military spending levels MUST be maintained then perhaps you should think about introducing some REVENUE to do so (like the elderly healthcare system, which pays for almost 90% of itself, compared to the military's 0%).

    The fact that you so only $$$ in the benefit of a strong military tells me that you are completely clueless as to what the military is all about..

    Michale
    0400

  41. [41] 
    Michale wrote:

    Some sick SICK people in this world...

    http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2012/12/14/police-respond-to-report-of-school-shooting-in-conn/

    27 Dead, including 18 children.....

    I give it 40 mins before the Left starts howling about Gun Control...

    Michale
    0401

  42. [42] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Note the absence of any bias whatsoever ...:)

  43. [43] 
    akadjian wrote:

    You can't put a dollar figure on the benefit a strong military gives us.

    Actually, you can and have to. Unless military spending is infinite which by definition is impossible since money is finite.

    What you can't have is ...

    - A military w/ huge expenses
    - No one paying for this military
    - And no deficit

    This ... is impossible

    -David

  44. [44] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Again: If you believe the military spending levels MUST be maintained then perhaps you should think about introducing some REVENUE to do so (like the elderly healthcare system, which pays for almost 90% of itself, compared to the military's 0%).

    The fact that you so only $$$ in the benefit of a strong military tells me that you are completely clueless as to what the military is all about..

    Ok let's play this out. I'll take a different tack and take a 'compromise' position. So we've identified the current deficit was caused by 3 main things: (1) Bad economy (2) Tax cuts and (3) Military Spending.

    We've agreed that there is absolutely no way we can cut military spending. We need a super powerful over the top military. 5% of GDP at a minimum - never-mind that Canada spends 1.4% to guard a much bigger country or that the UK spends 2.6% to guard an island. WE NEED 5%. WE ARE AMERICU. FUCK YEH. Coming again to save the muther-fucking day!

    But wait. There's a problem. Unlike the 'entitlement' programme Medicare, which contributes revenue accounting for 90% of the value of the programme, the military doesn't have it's own direct funding.

    And the facts clearly state that the military spending was one of the three contributors to the massive US deficit.

    So what do we do? We have to increase revenue right? We can't afford NOT to have a big miliary because Americu-fuck-yeh and all that - but we can't afford to have a big military at the same time.

    In fact, reasonable tax rates on those earning >$250k aren't going to cut it. We need more for pay for our Americu-fuck-yeh military. Perhaps CW's transaction tax or the AMT or tax rises on those eanring >$100k aren't such a bad idea? Or how about a military payroll tax? Then we'll see what people think of the size of the military...

  45. [45] 
    Michale wrote:

    So we've identified the current deficit was caused by 3 main things: (1) Bad economy (2) Tax cuts and (3) Military Spending.

    Exactly as I said...

    You start with the position that it's ALL the Republicans fault and THEN you start your analysis...

    Garbage IN.... Garbage OUT...

    You completely ignore the TRILLIONS and TRILLIONS in Obama/Democrat spending...

    You're wrong, even before you get started...

    Michale...
    0402

  46. [46] 
    Michale wrote:

    Actually, you can and have to.

    No, you can't..

    Because without our strong military, we wouldn't even be allowed to have this discussion..

    We might be speaking German or Japanese or Russian...

    You simply CANNOT put a price on the benefits of our military..

    Any attempt to try simply illustrates the folly of the attempt..

    Michale
    0403

  47. [47] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Exactly as I said...

    You start with the position that it's ALL the Republicans fault and THEN you start your analysis...

    Garbage IN.... Garbage OUT...

    You completely ignore the TRILLIONS and TRILLIONS in Obama/Democrat spending...

    You're wrong, even before you get started..

    Lol round in circles we go. Where did I say that it was Republicans fault exactly? Oh wait, I didn't.

    AGAIN: that these 3 things caused the deficit is indisputable complete 100% fact. You can argue over whose 'fault' they are or who is to 'blame' and turn it into a Partisan game all you like. Heck Obama has done nothing to solve (2) or (3) so he's as much to blame as anyone. You can even blame him for (1) a bit too if you want, see if I care.

    What isn't a fact are that stimulus programmes or entitlement spending had anywhere near as big a contribution as these 3 things. Like TINY in comparison. As I've shown in the other thread, these 3 things alone contributed to >80% of the US deficit. I've already illustrated this over and over again and even tried to break it down really simply for you but it seems that you are incapable of understanding reality/fact - in which case the whole discussion is pointless.

  48. [48] 
    akadjian wrote:

    But wait. There's a problem. Unlike the 'entitlement' programme Medicare, which contributes revenue accounting for 90% of the value of the programme, the military doesn't have it's own direct funding.

    Hmmm ... social security has it's own funding too.

    You start with the position that it's ALL the Republicans fault and THEN you start your analysis.

    Now see, michty ... when anyone reverts back to the "you're trying to blame Republicans" argument you know you've got 'em.

    Not that Michale will ever admit it because let's face, he's told you his position. An infinite amount of spending on the military. And more war.

    This, of course, is his agenda all along and why he resorts to tactics rather than argued reasoning.

    Because he knows argued reasoning is against him, yet he still wants to win the fight, so ergo ... you get the conservative Limbaugh tactics. Oh, you Democrats are always playing politics ... blah blah blah

    I told you he's smart.

    -David

  49. [49] 
    Michale wrote:

    AGAIN: that these 3 things caused the deficit is indisputable complete 100% fact.

    You saying it over and over doesn't make it fact.

    It's only a "fact" in your head and it's only in your head because you are ideologically blinded..

    Not that Michale will ever admit it because let's face, he's told you his position. An infinite amount of spending on the military. And more war.

    That's rich..

    Ya'all are being completely partisan by ignoring the orgasm of Democrats spending and *I* am the biased one?? :D

    It would be so hilarious if I didn't know you actually BELIEVE that the TRILLIONS and TRILLIONS that Obama and the Democrats have spent had NOTHING to do with the problems this country faces...

    Michale
    0404

  50. [50] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK let's approach it a different way..

    You claim you are *NOT* saying that "it's all the Republicans fault."

    OK.. Fine..

    What part of this issue is the Democrat's fault???

    I have a feeling I know what you are going to say, but I hope you prove me wrong.. :D

    Michale
    0405

  51. [51] 
    michty6 wrote:

    It's only a "fact" in your head and it's only in your head because you are ideologically blinded..

    Lol nope. Stating facts (i.e. the problems facing America) does not require ideological blindness. Where the ideological blindness comes in is:
    (1) Blaming people for the problems
    (2) Solutions to the problems

    In particular, Republicans are pretty bad at (2) because in order to solve a problem you first have to admit that the problem exists. Their grasp of reality is not strong enough for this.

    You claim you are *NOT* saying that "it's all the Republicans fault."

    OK.. Fine..

    What part of this issue is the Democrat's fault???

    Sure. Ok let's look at the facts. The deficit was largely caused by 3 things:
    (1) Poorer than expected economy
    (2) Tax cuts
    (3) Military spending

    Well the economic recovery under Obama hasn't been bad, it hasn't been great either. Slow and steady. Some things he did didn't work out. So of course he shares a part of (1).

    Obama extended the Bush tax cuts and even now, is only prepared to end them for those earning >$250k. So he definitely added to the deficit here.

    Obama has done nothing to curb the out of control military spending. In fact, military spending has continued to rise under Obama. So again, Obama has contributed to the deficit here.

    Let me put it this way: Obama has contributed to the deficit by failing to solve these 3 problems MUCH MUCH MORE than he has through stimulus, entitlements (of which he has done nothing) or anything else.

  52. [52] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Maybe, just maybe the last sentence in my above post will finally wake you up to reality. I won't be holding my breath.

  53. [53] 
    Michale wrote:

    I knew it..

    It's the Democrats fault for NOT being harder against the Republicans..

    Ergo, it's ALL the Republicans fault....

    And ya'all call ME biased... :D

    Michale
    0406

  54. [54] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Looool where did I say that? Try again. Here I'll put it in bold and 'Michale quote' form to see if you finally get it.

    Let me put it this way: Obama has contributed to the deficit by failing to solve these 3 problems MUCH MUCH MORE than he has through stimulus, entitlements (of which he has done nothing) or anything else.
    - Michty6

  55. [55] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ya'all are claiming you are NOT blaming it all on Republicans??

    Let's examine Mitchy's three Fantasy reasons..

    (1) Poorer than expected economy

    That's Bush's fault...

    (2) Tax cuts

    Tax Cuts are always because of Republicans

    (3) Military spending

    Military spending is always because of Republicans

    So, explain to me HOW exactly ya'all are NOT blaming it all on Republicans???

    Like dynamiting fish in a barrel...

    :D

    Michale
    0407

  56. [56] 
    michty6 wrote:

    So, explain to me HOW exactly ya'all are NOT blaming it all on Republicans???

    Uhm because I stated that you've had a Democratic President for 4 years and he has done nothing to solve these 3 problems?

    I mean seriously, do you even read my posts??

    These 3 problems aren't Democratic/Republican - they are American. These are why you have a massive deficit. You can squabble on and on and on and on and on about whose fault it is but IT DOESN'T MATTER WHOSE FAULT IT IS. Blame does not change the fact that these 3 problems exist and need to be addressed.

    What is a serious concern is when neither side is proposing anything to deal with no. (3), both sides producing very little to do with no. (1) and only one side wants to make a tiny dent in no. (2) while the other is off in fantasy land blaming 'entitlement spending'.

  57. [57] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    These tactics include liberal baiting, noise, and using their large advantage in funding to ram through their messaging.

    Sorry to burst your bubble there, David..

    But I actually believe that Democrats share responsibility for the mess this country in beyond the idea of not reigning in Republicans...

    Sorry to destroy your illusions.. :D

    Michale
    0408

  58. [58] 
    Michale wrote:

    These 3 problems aren't Democratic/Republican - they are American.

    Let's examine Mitchy's three Fantasy reasons..

    (1) Poorer than expected economy

    That's Bush's fault...

    (2) Tax cuts

    Tax Cuts are always because of Republicans

    (3) Military spending

    Military spending is always because of Republicans

    So, once again.. How is it you are NOT blaming it all on Republicans???

    Michale
    0409

  59. [59] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Lol since we're repeating comments.

    So, once again.. How is it you are NOT blaming it all on Republicans???

    Uhm because I stated that you've had a Democratic President for 4 years and he has done nothing to solve these 3 problems?

    I mean seriously, do you even read my posts??

    These 3 problems aren't Democratic/Republican - they are American. These are why you have a massive deficit. You can squabble on and on and on and on and on about whose fault it is but IT DOESN'T MATTER WHOSE FAULT IT IS. Blame does not change the fact that these 3 problems exist and need to be addressed. Let me repeat:

    IT DOES NOT MATTER WHOSE FAULT THESE 3 PROBLEMS ARE

    What is a serious concern is when neither side is proposing anything to deal with no. (3), both sides producing very little to do with no. (1) and only one side wants to make a tiny dent in no. (2) while the other is off in fantasy land blaming 'entitlement spending'.

  60. [60] 
    Michale wrote:

    These 3 problems aren't Democratic/Republican - they are American.

    You keep saying that..

    And I keep proving to you that, according to the Left/Democrats, those 3 problems are ALL the Republicans fault...

    Ergo, you are blaming the Republicans...

    No matter how you try to spin it, if you are NOT going to even consider that the Democrats and their orgasmic spending is part of the problem, you are NOT being intellectually honest.

    You are not even on the SAME planet as reality...

    It's that simple...

    Michale
    0410

  61. [61] 
    Michale wrote:

    Michty,

    I have to give you credit..

    Uhm because I stated that you've had a Democratic President for 4 years and he has done nothing to solve these 3 problems?

    This is the FIRST time in the last 4 years that ANYONE here (sans myself, Joshua(NyPoet) and the Poobah himself) have really slammed Obama substantially for his incompetence..

    So, irregardless of anything else, I am highly impressed..

    "And I don't impress easily! WOW!!!!! A BLUE CAR!!!!!"
    -Homer Simpson

    :D

    Michale
    0411

  62. [62] 
    michty6 wrote:

    No matter how you try to spin it, if you are NOT going to even consider that the Democrats and their orgasmic spending is part of the problem, you are NOT being intellectually honest.

    Lol again: the Democrats have done nothing to stop the 3 main things that are creating the large deficits:

    (1) Bad economy
    (2) Low taxes
    (3) Military spending

    It doesn't matter if the President is Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, Communist, Kenyan, Arab, Black, A Penguin - the FACT remains that these are still the 3 problems that have created the current deficit. No amount of rhetoric about 'Democrats orgasmic spending', 'entitlement spending' or other Fox-right-wing-spewed nonsense is going to change this.

    Once you've come across to reality-land, then we can actually have a sensible discussion about how to reduce the deficit...

  63. [63] 
    Michale wrote:

    Michty,

    So, you are saying that all the problems are caused by Republicans but the Democrats share some of the responsibility because they didn't/don't stop the Republicans....

    That's still putting the blame ALL on the Republicans and ignoring the Democrats and their orgasmic spending, running the debt up into the tens of trillions..

    Your way of thinking is NOT the reality... It's partisan ideology, pure and simple..

    I don't think you'll find ANYONE but the most rabid/hysterical Lefty who will agree that the Democrats orgasm of spending is not partially, if not mostly to blame..

    Michale
    0412

  64. [64] 
    michty6 wrote:

    So, you are saying that all the problems are caused by Republicans but the Democrats share some of the responsibility because they didn't/don't stop the Republicans...

    Not really. The American military didn't just become an lol-over-inflated part of Government overnight. This started a long, long, long time ago. It has just expanded a bit more than usual in recent years.

    And the US tax system, like many Western tax systems, has seen declining rates without the revenue to replace it for many years now. The US, like almost every other Western country for the past 30 years, preached tax cuts to people - because tax cuts are an easy sell for politicians and get you elected - whilst basically using the countries 'credit card' to replace tax revenue. In the US this began under Reagan and every President, except Clinton, has continued this.

    Finally, the bad economy of the last 10 years is the fault of both sides. Clinton should never have let Republicans de-regulate; Republicans should never have followed the religion of trickle-down.

    Your way of thinking is NOT the reality... It's partisan ideology, pure and simple..

    It's pretty much the EXACT OPPOSITE of what you say here. YOUR partisan ideology blinds you to reality. What I am saying isn't partisan ideology, it is fact. Fox and the kind would have you believe that the books were balanced and everything was fine when Bush handed the reigns to Obama; of course the opposite was true and the CBO had forecasted a $1.1t deficit BEFORE OBAMA CAME TO POWER.

    I don't think you'll find ANYONE but the most rabid/hysterical Lefty who will agree that the Democrats orgasm of spending is not partially, if not mostly to blame..

    Again: the exact OPPOSITE. YOUR partisan ideology and reliance on biased news sources means that you blame 'Democrats orgasm of spending' - even though the deficit issue was INHERITED by Democrats (who basically continued the same policies, doing little to fix it). You live in a FANTASY WORLD where Bush handed Obama the nicest economy ever seen and Obama spent 'orgasmically' to get the US where it is today.

    That the US deficit problems have been present for more than 10 years now is completely blind to you since in your fantasy world the US deficit problems began in 2009.

    You are blind to reality, fact and thus unable to contribute anything meaningful in a discussion about how the deficit should be reduced.

  65. [65] 
    Michale wrote:

    ' - even though the deficit issue was INHERITED by Democrats

    Thereby putting the blame squarely on Bush and the Republicans..

    It's fascinating to see how you are completely and utterly incapable of seeing that it's the Democrats orgasmic spending that is part of the problem..

    You accuse me of partisanship, but it's really COMMON SENSE..

    If you spend and spend and spend money you DON'T HAVE, there are going to be problems..

    It's not partisanship..

    IT'S COMMON SENSE...

    Michale
    0413

  66. [66] 
    michty6 wrote:

    David,
    This is what I've been meaning when I say discussing the fiscal cliff is pointless and is like discussing how many cigarettes to take away from someone with an alcohol problem.

    One side is CONVINCED that America didn't have a deficit problem until Obama came to power. It' as if the guy who added the 2nd most debt (as a % of starting point) EVER SEEN BY ANY PRESIDENT EVER between 2000 and 2009 didn't exist and Obama inherited a MASSIVE surplus.

    Until people are actually serious about the 3 main causes of the US debt and stop assigning blame, the whole discussion is pointless. Republicans can go on harping about 'entitlements', even though this had NOTHING TO DO with the deficit and Democrats can keep ignoring the giant military-elephant in the room - whilst believing that a tiny fix to the tax problem is actually going to do something...

  67. [67] 
    michty6 wrote:

    It's fascinating to see how you are completely and utterly incapable of seeing that it's the Democrats orgasmic spending that is part of the problem..

    It's amazing to me that you can't see that 70% of the current $16t US Debt EXISTED BEFORE OBAMA CAME TO POWER. Where did that debt come from? Did Obama invent a time machine and go back in time to 'orgasmically spend' for decades?? Lololol it would not surprise me if you actually believed this - THAT is how blind to reality and in denial you are...

    If you spend and spend and spend money you DON'T HAVE, there are going to be problems..

    It's not partisanship..

    IT'S COMMON SENSE..

    I agree completely. See number (3) on my list of reasons why the US debt is so high. See posts [32] and [35] for a more detailed explanation of which programmes in America pay for themselves and which just spend, spend, spend, spend.

  68. [68] 
    akadjian wrote:

    One side is CONVINCED that America didn't have a deficit problem until Obama came to power.

    Here's a trick I've found, michty.

    You can basically categorize conservatives in two groups.

    Let's call them group A) the base, and group B) pretty ordinary people who happen to at some point have bought into Republican ideas.

    Group A understands everything you're saying but realizes that they will benefit more from playing the Democrat/Republican game. Basically, even noise benefits you when you have a position of strength. In their case, monetary. Classic Sun Tzu divide and conquer.

    If you read any conservative literature (don't buy, but maybe at the library; Ann Coulter's "How to talk to a liberal (if you must)" is a great example, they preach these tactics (though they'll call them different things)

    Group B you can have rational conversations with unless you mistakenly treat them like Group A.

    In any situation, it's important to make this distinction. You can win over people in Group B. In fact, it's actually not that hard. Especially lately they seem to be defecting in droves.

    Group A is also worth fighting with but the fight is different.

    Oh ... hello. What's that? I'm sorry, it's a beer calling :)

    -David

  69. [69] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Is there a Group C - Believes everything they see on Fox and - even when countered with logical, sensible facts - are unable to deny that Fox is lying to them?

    On to a more interesting subject, what beer are you drinking?? I am not a huge fan of American beers. True story: I was in a bar in Philly and asked the barman 'can I try one of your local beers?' he said 'sure - we have Miller, Bud...' ;)

    I like some of the micro-breweries and also Sam Adams :)

  70. [70] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's amazing to me that you can't see that 70% of the current $16t US Debt EXISTED BEFORE OBAMA CAME TO POWER.

    And how long did it take to accumulate that 70% (even if it's accurate)???

    Decades??? Tens of decades???

    And Obama has bumped it up 30% IN LESS THAN 4 YEARS!!!!

    And YOU don't think that it MIGHT have something to do with the problem!!???

    SERIOUSLY!!!!!??????

    Michale
    0412

  71. [71] 
    Michale wrote:

    of which programmes in America pay for themselves and which just spend, spend, spend, spend.

    Yea, your bias against the military is obvious... 4-F?? :D

    Having Free Money While You Are Unemployed For A Decade: 50 Billion Dollars

    Being able to get all the free contraceptives so you can have all the consequences-less sex you want: 200 million dollars

    Having to have your ass pulled out of the fire in some third world shit hole by the US Military:

    PRICELESS

    You CAN'T put a price on what the US military does for this country...

    Therefore, ya'all think it's worthless...

    That paying for some whino's unemployment or some sex-crazed bimbo's pills is MORE important to this country than a strong, capable and viable military...

    And *I* am the partisan for saying, "HELL NO"????

    Again...

    SERIOUSLY!!!?????

    Michale
    0413

  72. [72] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ya see, here is the ONE question that ya'all have to ask yourselves....

    Is the military expense commensurate with the service that it provides this country...

    Anyone who answers "NO"????

    Well, I have to concede a new emotion...

    Speechlessness

    Michale
    0414

  73. [73] 
    Michale wrote:

    But why stop with the military???

    Cops and firemen don't produce any income..

    Let's get rid of them...

    Doctors??? EMTS???

    Hell, they ain't making this country any money..

    OFF WITH THEIR HEADS!!!

    You see how utterly ridiculous ya'alls position is???

    Michale
    0415

  74. [74] 
    Michale wrote:

    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2012/12/14/Bloomberg-politicizes-shooting

    What I tell ya....

    What IS it with the Left and politicizing every tragedy that comes down the road!??

    Michale
    0416

  75. [75] 
    michty6 wrote:

    And how long did it take to accumulate that 70% (even if it's accurate)???

    Decades??? Tens of decades???

    And Obama has bumped it up 30% IN LESS THAN 4 YEARS!!!!

    And YOU don't think that it MIGHT have something to do with the problem!!???

    SERIOUSLY!!!!!??????

    Lol you have to be kidding me. It amazes me how wrong you can be everytime you post.

    Debt before Bush = $4.5t
    Debt after Bush = $11t
    Increase under Bush = $6.5t
    Increase under Bush = 145%

    Wonder how he increased it so much? Maybe something to do with (1) Poor economy (2) Taxes and (3) Military...?

    Nah. Obama got in a time machine and went back and increased ENTITLEMENTS/OBAMA ORGASMIC SPENDING LOOOOOOOOOL.

    But of those 3 reasons the debt went up 145%, which has Obama got rid of/fixed? How about NONE.

    Hmmmm so we did these 3 things and it increased the debt 145%. Then Obama continued these 3 things and the debt continued to increase rapidly. So the logical conclusion: must be the entitlements/orgasmic spending! LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL.

    Is the military expense commensurate with the service that it provides this country...

    Anyone who answers "NO"????

    Uhm... Holding my arm up as high as I can. You have to be kidding me if you think paying trillions of dollars for unnecessary equipment and wars is a useful 'service'.

    But hey, if you think America needs a Americu-fuck-yeh sized military that's fine with me... As long as you're willing to pay for it. The problem is: you aren't.

    Cops and firemen don't produce any income..

    Lol. WRONG.

    Doctors??? EMTS???

    Hell, they ain't making this country any money..

    Lol. WRONG.

    Seriously. Where do you think the Government's money comes from???? Do you know how an economy works??? Amazing.

  76. [76] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Why does every column Chris writes have the same comments all the time? The discussion is always about the same thing, over and over again. Why is that?

  77. [77] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Not really looking for an answer. Just thinking out loud.

  78. [78] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Michty- yes, there is a 3rd group. Not here though.

    Sam Adams winter ale. Its not bad. Belgian beers are about the best. But there's a lot of good American small brew beers. Here in cincinnati, Christian moerlein is a favorite.

    From the bar...

    -david

  79. [79] 
    Michale wrote:

    Why does every column Chris writes have the same comments all the time? The discussion is always about the same thing, over and over again. Why is that?

    Because very VERY few people here can't think outside the lines of the Leftist/Democrat ideology...

    Michale
    0417

  80. [80] 
    Michale wrote:

    Because very VERY few people here can't think outside the lines of the Leftist/Democrat ideology...

    In other words, everything is the Republicans fault.

    Democrats are pure as the driven snow..

    The only mistake Democrats make is not fighting the Republicans hard enough..

    That about sums up the vast majority of the thoughts around here..

    Michale
    0418

  81. [81] 
    Michale wrote:

    Michty,

    You can spout numbers all you like..

    But as we have seen, you can NEVER back up your numbers with anything resembling FACTS..

    The simple fact is, it's the orgasmic spending of the Democrats that have brought us to this point.

    Your "It's All The Republicans' Fault" broken record is simply Party Ideology and has absolutely nothing to do with reality or the facts...

    Michale
    0421

  82. [82] 
    Michale wrote:

    The simple fact is, it's the orgasmic spending of the Democrats that have brought us to this point.

    I don't think you'll find ANYONE (even in Weigantia) who will say that the orgasmic spending of the Democrats/Obama has NOTHING to do with the financial problems of this country..

    Not even in Weigantia... :D

    Michale....
    0422

  83. [83] 
    michty6 wrote:

    In other words, everything is the Republicans fault.

    Democrats are pure as the driven snow..

    The only mistake Democrats make is not fighting the Republicans hard enough..

    The funny thing is that at no point have I said Democrats have been 'good'. Some of them are just as blind to the over-bloated military as you are... And their present tax fix is not really a tax fix.

    The problems with the US debt didn't arise overnight. Thinking that they can be fixed this way (or without even acknowledging what the problems are) means you are not going to be fixing them anytime soon...

    You can spout numbers all you like..

    But as we have seen, you can NEVER back up your numbers with anything resembling FACTS..

    Loooooooool I literally laughed at this. Apparently my actual real $ numbers aren't facts but your rhetoric about 'orgasmic spending' is lololol. As always you never cease to amaze me. You literally have not quoted ONE SINGLE FACT to back up that 'orgasmic spending' is to blame for the increase in the debt (over the last 10 years). I'll save you the time and hassle though: as usual this nothing but rhetoric you saw on Fox and there isn't a statistic in the world that can back this up. Go enjoy a Sam Adams instead ;)

    The simple fact is, it's the orgasmic spending of the Democrats that have brought us to this point.

    Yes Michale. Obama got in his time machine and increased the debt by 145% from 2000 to 2009. Then Bush handed him a massive surplus with a forecasted surplus and his 'orgasmic spending' wrecked this. Did you know that Romney won the election? Since we're making up fantasy-world stuff invented by Fox we might as well go all the way...

  84. [84] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Why does every column Chris writes have the same comments all the time?

    Liz, I don't think they do. In fact, I learn a lot through these discussions.

    But I could see why you'd say that. Here's a few thoughts ...

    1) As you can see, we really don't have a liberal media in the U.S. There is conservative media and corporate entertainment media and really not a broadcast type of liberal media.

    2) This means conservatives have an inherent advantage in the media. There is noise and there is conservative media able to cut through the noise.

    3) What are our advantages? 1 ... numbers. 2 ... the conservative message is not exactly popular when people really understand what it means. 3 ... the philosophy conservatives have gotten behind has clearly lead to some major issues, especially with the economy.

    4) So how does this relate to these conversations?

    5) The way to fight the corporate messaging is with a solid ground game. Person to person. Friend to friend.

    6) For every Michale that's out there who I likely know we'll never win over, there are nine other people who I have won over.

    7) My favorite success includes a VP at a major U.S. bank who is a pretty conservative Catholic and a huge firearms enthusiast. He's also a good friend and former Republican.

    8) Doing this requires practice and I enjoy practicing. And I learn things too. Things that you rarely see in the American corporate media. Like actual budget numbers.

    9) So I encourage you or anybody, join the fray! If enough people do it, pretty soon the noise will be irrelevant!

    I don't think you'll find ANYONE (even in Weigantia) who will say that the orgasmic spending of the Democrats/Obama has NOTHING to do with the financial problems of this country.

    So Michale ... most of the deficit spending under Obama was on 2 things:

    1) the military
    2) the economic crisis

    Social security and medicare are not significantly impacting the deficit because these are paid for w/ taxes. The money spent on bailing out the banks has been made back.

    That leave the military as the biggest contributor to deficit spending.

    So pick one Michale ... military or deficit. You can't have both. If you want to cut the deficit, this is going to have to include military spending cuts.

    Or if you want a big military, then maybe we should pay for it. No?

    -David

    p.s. It's not Republican or Democrat you're fighting against, Michale. It's math :)

  85. [85] 
    akadjian wrote:

    p.s. Michty - I'm also a big fan of Newcastle!

  86. [86] 
    Michale wrote:

    So Michale ... most of the deficit spending under Obama was on 2 things:

    1) the military
    2) the economic crisis

    Complete and other BULLSHIT...

    Are you saying that the TRILLIONS that Obama spent on bailouts and stimuluses and bankrupt GREEN companies had NOTHING to do with the financial issues???

    Com'on David.. I was born at night, but it wasn't LAST night..

    Not only does that position defy logic and rational thought, it simply defies COMMON SENSE...

    OK, so we have 2 Weigantians who believe that the TRILLIONS of dollars Obama spent, dollars we don't even have, have NOTHING to do with the financial crisis..

    Anyone else believe such utter BS????

    Michale
    0431

  87. [87] 
    Michale wrote:

    Complete and other BULLSHIT...

    Little dyslexic there...

    That SHOULD read "Complete and utter BULLSHIT...

    My bust...

    Michale
    0432

  88. [88] 
    Michale wrote:

    p.s. It's not Republican or Democrat you're fighting against, Michale. It's math :)

    No... It's DEMOCRAT math I am arguing with...

    Which, as is apparent, has NOTHING to do with reality...

    But, it's an interesting notion you bring up.

    Are you SERIOUSLY advocating we do away with the military because it doesn't bring in revenue???

    What's next??

    Cops and firemen don't bring in revenue...

    You live in a scary world. I dunno if I would like your world.. :D

    Michale
    0433

  89. [89] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    David,

    I simply do not have the luxury of time or energy to waste on nonsense discussions, here or anywhere else. While I'm going to continue to try to encourage people who are a fan of Chris at HP to come on over here and check out the rest of his essential columns and support his work, I can't honestly encourage them to join in the discussion here anymore.

    For now, I'm going to stick, for the most part, to reading the columns which have always been enlightening and always will be, regardless of the often mindless twists and turns of the discussions that follow.

    Maybe I've just had enough and have reached my limit. Maybe I'll feel differently next year ...

  90. [90] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    "enlightened discussions" are a two-way street..

    If the peanut gallery would actually put forth some rational discourse, rather than biased partisan bile, I wouldn't have to respond with boring facts and brilliant logic.. :D

    I mean, come'on.. The idea that Democrats orgasm of spending is COMPLETELY blameless in the current financial mess??

    The idea that, because the military doesn't produce revenue, we should mothball it??

    These are utterly ridiculous talking points... They hit the depths of irrationality that, frankly, I am surprised to even SEE them here in Weigantia...

    These are supposed to be REALITY based discussions.

    The idea that Democrats' spending is completely blameless and that we should do away with our first, last and ONLY line of defense is as far from reality as one can get and still be taking up space...

    Michale
    0440

  91. [91] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK, Boehner has put STICK IT TO THE RICH on the table..

    Let's see if Obama and Democrats are really about compromise...

    10,000 quatloos say they push us over a financial cliff and into another recession because they didn't get EVERYTHING they wanted...

    Michale
    0441

  92. [92] 
    Michale wrote:

    I do have to say..

    NO ONE here (sans the GP himself and yours truly) has the moral or ethical high ground to complain about how Republicans never compromise....

    Ya'all are painting yerselves in quite the corner with the blind support of Obama and the Dems. :D

    Michale
    0442

  93. [93] 
    akadjian wrote:

    For now, I'm going to stick, for the most part, to reading the columns which have always been enlightening and always will be, regardless of the often mindless twists and turns of the discussions that follow.

    Maybe I've just had enough and have reached my limit. Maybe I'll feel differently next year.

    Do what's right for you, Liz. When I get tired of the baiting tactics, I just step away. Nothing to get angry about.

    Like I said, I do it mostly for the practice. And the people I focus on the most are people who are more likely to listen.

    Remember ... for every Michale, there are plenty of people willing to listen who won't play the liberal baiting game.

    The practice just makes it easier to reach these people.

    -David

  94. [94] 
    Michale wrote:

    Remember ... for every Michale, there are plenty of people willing to listen who won't play the liberal baiting game.

    Now that's just unfair..

    I am ALWAYS willing to listen..

    And, unlike anyone else here, I ALWAYS admit when I am wrong, when presented with FACTS..

    But none of ya have any facts.. Ya'all spout numbers and spin and partisan BS with absolutely NO EVIDENCE to support it..

    You want me to admit I am wrong and ya are right???

    PROVE IT TO ME...

    I am not going to concede the point, just because you want me to...

    If I did that, ya'all wouldn't learn anything.. :D

    Michale
    0342

  95. [95] 
    akadjian wrote:

    But none of ya have any facts.

    How much more factual can you be than illustrating the impact of the military on our deficit?

    There is no portion of our taxes dedicated to paying for the military. Not like Medicare. Not like social security.

    And, the military is our largest expenditure.

    And since we're not paying for it up front, it goes on our credit card. It is the single biggest reason for the deficit.

    Am I advocating for getting rid of the military? Not necessarily.

    Simply if we want a huge military, if you're serious about not running a deficit, we should pay for it.

    PROVE IT TO ME.

    Over and over we do.

    And you come back with "You're liberal!!!!"

    Over and over and over.

    -David

  96. [96] 
    Michale wrote:

    Am I advocating for getting rid of the military? Not necessarily.

    The fact that you have to qualify it is scary enough... It indicates that getting rid of the military IS a possibility..

    Even CONSIDERING getting rid of the military shows we aren't even on the same planet..

    *I* am on planet earth.. Not sure where you are?? Kronos?? :D

    There is no portion of our taxes dedicated to paying for the military. Not like Medicare. Not like social security.

    And because of THAT, the military serves no useful purpose??

    Without the US military, we wouldn't have to WORRY about taxes.. We wouldn't be even talking about it, because there would be no Internet..

    My gods, the idea we're even TALKING about getting rid of the military!!

    It's MIND-BOGGLING...

    Are you just yanking my chain???

    Michale
    0344

  97. [97] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    David,

    You're probably right. I've been in a bit of a mood of late which undoubtedly results from the fact that I've been following all of this a little too closely and for far too long without my customary months long break from it all.

  98. [98] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    "enlightened discussions" are a two-way street..

    If the peanut gallery would actually put forth some rational discourse, rather than biased partisan bile, I wouldn't have to respond with boring facts and brilliant logic.. :D

    I mean, come'on.. The idea that Democrats orgasm of spending is COMPLETELY blameless in the current financial mess??

    I wouldn't go so far as to say that Democrats over the years have been competely blameless for the Great Recession and the global financial crisis that led to it. But, I also know that the blame should not be equally distributed - not by a long shot!

    I always hear about how the current administration is responsible for exploding the debt. But, that is simply not true. Unless, of course, you call putting two off the books wars and a couple of off the books tax cuts back onto the books exploding the debt.

    The spending that this administration has done has gone a long way toward preventing a second Great Depression which would have been far worse than the first.

    I would just like to see the Republicans step back a bit in the wake in the election and give the president more leeway in improving the economic recovery. I wouldn't even mind if they thought of it as giving the Democrats enough rope to hang themselves. That is to say that if the Democratic plan doesn't work then the Republicans can reap the just rewards. And, if it does work, then the entire country and wider world benefits.

  99. [99] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    I wouldn't go so far as to say that Democrats over the years have been competely blameless for the Great Recession and the global financial crisis that led to it. But, I also know that the blame should not be equally distributed - not by a long shot!

    OK, now this is progress...

    I don't agree with you, but at least you acknowledge the Left's culpability beyond just incompetence in not reigning in the Right...

    I always hear about how the current administration is responsible for exploding the debt. But, that is simply not true. Unless, of course, you call putting two off the books wars and a couple of off the books tax cuts back onto the books exploding the debt.

    Let me put it this way...

    Let's say you run a PMC.. You contract out to support two countries in their wars.. This costs you billions of dollars, but you will recoup this money when the countries pay you for the successful completion of the wars...

    You ALSO go out and spend TRILLIONS of dollars on yachts and airplanes and race cars and helping your executives families buy houses and yachts and airplanes and cars..

    Your company is now trillions and trillions of dollars in debt.

    Wouldn't it be fair to say that the TRILLIONS of dollars you spent on airplanes and yachts and airplanes and helping your executives' families not only MIGHT have something to do with your crushing debt but actually be a BIG part of the problem???

    Of course it would...

    I am honestly gabberflasted that people actually believe that the orgasmic spending of Obama and the Democrats has little or nothing to do with the financial crisis this country is in...

    The spending that this administration has done has gone a long way toward preventing a second Great Depression which would have been far worse than the first.

    Not necessarily..

    If we HAD entered a Great Depression, we would be well on our way to a REAL recovery with a newly minted economic structure that was modern and fit the times we live in..

    By simply putting a bandaid on a heart attack patient, our government has GUARANTEED that this economy will NEVER fully recover and that the sad state of our economy in the here and now is likely the new norm...

    I would just like to see the Republicans step back a bit in the wake in the election and give the president more leeway in improving the economic recovery.

    I would have liked to have seen Democrats step back a bit in the wake of their 2010 shellacking and give the new Republican Congress more leeway in improving the economic recovery.

    Funny how that works both ways, eh?? :D

    I wouldn't even mind if they thought of it as giving the Democrats enough rope to hang themselves. That is to say that if the Democratic plan doesn't work then the Republicans can reap the just rewards. And, if it does work, then the entire country and wider world benefits.

    Now THIS I could agree with as I have often thought of this myself..

    But consider this analogy...

    I would like to give M-16s to a group of monkeys to prove that it's a bad idea to give M-16s to a group of monkeys..

    Somethings are just bad ideas w/o have to actually PROVE that it's a bad idea... :D

    Giving Democrats carte blanche to do whatever they wish would put this country into a tailspin that it would likely not be able to pull out of..

    Consider what happened under the Bush Administration when Democrats gave Bush a blank check to handle National Security...

    Michale
    0345

  100. [100] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obama Sandy aid bill filled with holiday goodies unrelated to storm damage
    Vics suffer as $60B aid plan gets porked up

    http://www.nypost.com/p/news/national/little_help_here_1kW6aQ8fElj4CKwbheEV0N

    This is EXACTLY what I am talking about...

    You simply CANNOT tell me with a straight face that THIS kind of spending has absolutely NOTHING to do with the fiscal problems this country faces..

    Michale
    0352

  101. [101] 
    akadjian wrote:

    You're probably right. I've been in a bit of a mood of late which undoubtedly results from the fact that I've been following all of this a little too closely and for far too long without my customary months long break from it all.

    I find I have to put limits around it or the inanity of it all gets to me. That is, when I'm in it, I'm in it, but when I step away, I really step away.

    Because trust me, Liz. Those doing the marketing are extremely skilled. They know how to pull the emotional strings and making you feel bad or like it's not worth fighting for is one of their favorite tactics.

    The good news is that more and more people are turning away from the propaganda. The bad news is that those behind it keep doubling down on their efforts, believing that with simply more money and more resources they will win.

    Our hope is that we learn to understand it and ... maybe ... just maybe ... people learn how to limit it's power.

    :)

    Keep fightin' the good fight!

    -David

  102. [102] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Whups. Sorry for all the italics!

  103. [103] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Liz,
    I feel the same way of recent. As I've mentioned before having discussions on deficit reduction is completely nonsense when you have 2 sides whose views are: (1) Look here are the real dollar value numbers, here is where we've gone wrong over the past decade and (2) Screw numbers, facts or anything it's Obama's 'orgamsmic spending' to blame.

    I can see what you mean that discussions with someone who has view (2) (i.e. everyone who watches Fox) tend to just go round in circles with person (1) resorting to presenting more and more facts and numbers to back up their views and person (2) just continuing to deny these and spout rhetoric, whilst not producing a single number or fact, over and over and over again.

    For these reasons I'd pretty much stayed away from discussing deficit reduction in detail (it's completely pointless, since it's like discussing how to solve someone's alcohol problem with a person who believes that cigarettes to blame) but couldn't help myself on Friday in this thread!

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