By Joe Conason

While Republicans Warn Against ‘Greece,’ That Is Exactly Where Austerity Budgeting Will Lead U.S.

February 26, 2013 12:52 am Category: Memo Pad, Politics 140 Comments A+ / A-
While Republicans Warn Against ‘Greece,’ That Is Exactly Where Austerity Budgeting Will Lead U.S.

Indebted America is in danger of turning into destitute Greece, or so congressional Republicans and conservative commentators have been warning us for years now.  For many reasons, this is an absurd comparison – but it may not always be quite so ridiculous if Washington’s advocates of austerity get their way.

The Republicans actually want to impose Greek-style budget-slashing on the United States. And the federal budget sequestration scheduled to take effect next week could represent the first serious step here toward the kind of fiscal policies that have proved so ruinous not only in Greece — raising unemployment, destroying hope, and encouraging extremism — but across Europe.

Nearly every day, House Speaker John Boehner or Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell – or Senator Rand Paul or Rep. Paul Ryan, or almost any other prominent Republican – insists that the only way to improve the economic prospects of the American people is to impose drastic budget cuts on them. While these Republican leaders don’t love the sequester budget only because it cuts too deeply into defense programs, they are eager to impose similar cuts or worse on every domestic function, from health care and education to food safety and infrastructure.

Unwilling as they usually are to name specific cuts, the Republican plans that have emerged lately are indeed similar in scope and impact to those imposed by European central bankers on Greece, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, and other beleaguered states across the continent (and imposed by the British government on the United Kingdom itself).

Enacting the same fiscal policies in this country would, presumably, induce the same effects. Yet despite their enthusiasm for extreme austerity the Republican, Tea Party, and assorted media soothsayers almost never want to discuss what has happened in Europe as a result of those same policies. It is not always possible to ignore the unhappy reality of renewed recession, from England to Italy.

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While Republicans Warn Against ‘Greece,’ That Is Exactly Where Austerity Budgeting Will Lead U.S. Reviewed by on . Indebted America is in danger of turning into destitute Greece, or so congressional Republicans and conservative commentators have been warning us for years now Indebted America is in danger of turning into destitute Greece, or so congressional Republicans and conservative commentators have been warning us for years now Rating:

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  • 503me

    Is there anyway we the people can impeach the people in congress that are unwilling to work for the good of the country and govern for the people, not for those that own them?

    • lana ward

      If we could impeach those not willing to work for the good of the country, Omuslim and his communists(the dems) would all be in prison!!!

      • bjbstarr11

        Lana,

        As usual you have your facts wrong. The GOP has ruined this country. Don’t blame the President for everything that happens in this Country. An another fact, he is not muslim. Even if he was, who cares……………. Get a life.

        • lana ward

          Once again someone has been brainwashed and believes the Godless party

          • http://www.facebook.com/dominick.vila.1 Dominick Vila

            And somebody is either blind or unable to understand the realities that surround her.

          • lana ward

            Yes, someone is, and it’s not me. Did you know O and Hagel have a plan to deploy US troops to Gaza in order to cripple Israel? That’s why O wants Hagel in Sooo bad. Did you know the DHS has ordered shooting targets depicting average citizens to eliminate “hesitation to kill in upcoming, planned war on anti-obama population( remember O’s revenge comment) and Valerie Jarretts?? Special Forces Chief, Lieutenant General William G. Boykin says, Everything done in every Marxist insurgency , is being done in America today

          • nobsartist

            wow….how do you get all of this inside information?

            You must have a direct line to god.

            fairy tale time.

          • http://www.facebook.com/dominick.vila.1 Dominick Vila

            In all fairness, sometimes they have good sources. Let’s nor forget the considerable investments the Koch brothers and other American entrepreneurs are making in countries like Libya, Tunis, and Algeria. It would not surprise me if some of these “gentlemen” know more about what happened in Benghazi and who carried out the attack than our intelligence agencies do. Don’t expect them to face congressional hearings any time soon though.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/UHE4MJP5FHMFIEAOGEQHETUGDQ Rvn_sgt6768

            Know more as you state, and may in fact, be at the root of the problem and instigators.

          • lana ward

            Omuslim is the Anti-Christ. The dems are his followers

          • nobsartist

            this would only concern those that believe in fairy tales like “christ”.

            Grow up.

          • lana ward

            I see Omuslim hasn’t dropped a bomb on you yet, maybe he’ll get you with a MAV

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_TT6POTCLZCE74T76WAJIIIUAHU frida

            Lana, Do you always comment by reasoning or you just write for the sake of writing?

          • pangamut

            She has said before she gets some of her information from WND … this is the RationalWiki report on WND …

            WND (formerly WorldNetDaily or, as it was affectionately known to its fans, WingNutDaily) is an extremely conservative website founded by Joseph Farah in 1997. It espouses a fundamentalist Christian, creationist view of the world. Its political leanings are right-wing, pro-”Christian right”, and supposedly pro-United States, with strongly libertarian economic views. It pretends to give multiple sides of an issue: the conservative viewpoint and the ultra-conservative viewpoint. It is far to the right of Fox News.

            While they present themselves as news, WND is essentially a tabloid for radical right-wingers. Their publishing standards are rock-bottom, and they have run stories from extremely questionable sources on many, many occasions.[1][2] They are best known for distributing Ann Coulter’s insipid columns, as well as articles written by noted political analysts Chuck Norris and Pat Boone. They recently added disgraced baseball bigot John Rocker as well, indicating they’ve decided to drop the dog whistles and go with overt racism.

            The scary thing is that this bilge is actually slightly influential, with made-up bullshit from WND making its way out the mouths of wingnut congressmen and cable TV pundits far too often.[3]

          • idamag

            She doesn’t use facts. She is a stupid name caller. She doesn’t have any inside information. She finds hate blogs to reinforce her hatred. I doubt if she ever had friends.

          • http://www.facebook.com/dominick.vila.1 Dominick Vila

            Wow! Is that what FOX, Limbaugh and all the other ideologues feed people like you? Neither President Obama nor DoD Secretary nominee Chuck Hagel have plans to invade Gaza to cripple Israel. First of all, even if such decision was being planned – it is not – deploying troops in Gaza would help Israel by enhancing surveillance and control over Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. The fact that some right wingers believe policies such as the Affordable Care Act is a marxist program does not mean it is. ACA, to mention just one of many programs put in place by the Obama administration, with congressional approval, uses for-profit insurance companies to manage the system. The latter is the anti-thesis of socialism. In fact, it is capitalism on steroids.
            The best thing we can do as citizens is to learn to think by analyzing matters of interest to determine how the benefit or affect our well being and that of our country. What we don’t need, is to embrace the diatribes that come out of both sides of our political spectrum to form an opinion. More often than not, the truth is somewhere in between.

          • lana ward

            At least I got you thinking alittle bit. This thing in our WH is a terrorist

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/UHE4MJP5FHMFIEAOGEQHETUGDQ Rvn_sgt6768

            No little lana you are clearly our worst terrorist.

          • TZToronto

            Learn to think? Really? Those who believe this nonsense let others do their thinking for them. Logically, they have to believe what they are told since they are too lazy to think for themselves.

          • mah101

            lana, let me be quite clear and frank – you need the intervention.

            You are a fool. Seek help

          • lana ward

            Omuslim is a terrorist. What happened to those who believed Hitler!! He must have been more smooth than Omuslim!!!

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/UHE4MJP5FHMFIEAOGEQHETUGDQ Rvn_sgt6768

            And you are much dumber than most of Germany was.

          • lana ward

            I know what Omuslim is doing, you don’t, so who’s the dumb one?

          • idamag

            Any time any stupid whacko uses hitler, Nazism and the Holocaust for political fodder, they are insulting the memories of those people who lived through it.

          • oldtack

            Lana
            I feel that I must warn you of the dire impending calamity that will befall you very shortly. Yes, the deomcrats under the leadership of Obama and Hagel are indeed planning to take Hamas to war and assist them in destroying the puppet State Israel but before they do that — they know who you are and they know where you live and oyu are in their gun sights. Before they rain destruction on the Zionists they will rain destruction on ALL anti Obama Republicans in this country. It’s really not hard. They know who you are. They know where you live —just one shot and you’re no longer a bother.

            This is coming in the very near future. Hope you can find a secure place in which to hide. But – these people are GOOD when it comes to eradication of the enemy. And you and your ilk are the enemy.

          • lana ward

            Omuslim and Jarrett said to take revenge on the enemy. Yes, I am an enemy of Omuslim and that gives him the right to kill me????. I wish Bush had killed all of his enemies, there would be no dems left. Heil Hitler!!!

          • idamag

            Transferrence – transferring her own vices to others. She lies all the time.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jim-Myers/100001512942781 Jim Myers

            You are obviously talking about yourself and the GOP.

          • highpckts

            You have to be a “plant” on this site! No one could be as narrow minded and stupid as you are!

          • lana ward

            You’re narrow minded, you never leave this site

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/UHE4MJP5FHMFIEAOGEQHETUGDQ Rvn_sgt6768

            Lana the troll please show me where in the Constitution it says any of us (US) must believe in (a) a God or (b) your God in order to be an American. Kindly get your version of religion out of my Constitution and Country, “The United States of America”.

          • lana ward

            For 50 years the dems have chipped away at decency, family values and God. How’s America doing without God??

          • idamag

            Thomas Jefferson, when advocating the separation of church and state said, “I don’t care if a man believes in one god, many gods or no god at all…”

            Imagine Jesus who was humble and gentle, listening to someone like Lana.

        • BDC_57

          it doesn’t do any thing to respond to anal she’ in her own little world.

        • idamag

          I have never seen the former welfare queen use facts.

      • nobsartist

        If we gave that crime the death penalty, there would be no more republiCONs or “CONservatives” and romney would have his own planet.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OLT3BBICDAFJXQAHHKXXLJUCH4 Stella53

        In other words, lana, if we’re not willing to work for what you tea bagging, evangelicalist, neocon, bigots want, then we should all be impeached and go to prision! LMAO!!

        • lana ward

          Heil Hitler!!

    • mah101

      Lost in the response to lana’s rants is the point of the original comment. Just HOW can we get Congress to start working for the people again? We can’t impose new election laws, we can’t tell them to get to work, and given the media’s inability to serve our interests we can’t seem to vote these bums out either.

      Just what are we supposed to do?

    • plc97477

      only the people who voted them in can do that and if they had that much sense they wouldn’t have voted for them

      • idamag

        Damn straight.

    • idamag

      It is too bad we can’t make them use time cards and pay them by the hour. You can’t take a vacation until you get your room cleaned.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Daniel-Jones/827014412 Daniel Jones

    Just because it’s a political cause does not exempt this business from the laws of cause of effect.

    The austerity programs are causing the problem, or at the very least *not helping*.

    That would hold true here.

  • nobsartist

    12 years ago neither the republiCONs or dems cared about the deficit 10 years in advance with the wars that they decided to start that, by the way, are still going on.

    NEITHER party should be allowed to govern until they come forward and admit that it is a tie for the award for the stupidist people in the room.

    I have not heard either party propose extending the payroll tax to EVERY FUCKING PENNY EARNED.

    Neither party is serious, they think we are stupid for electing them.

    • stcroixcarp

      No need to use bad language.

      • nobsartist

        freedom of speach.

        Or did that get thrown out with “the pursuit of happiness” clause?

        • Lisztman

          Re: “Freedom of Speech”. Is one “allowed” to use such language on this site? Obviously so (it hasn’t been censored). Is it necessary, desirable, in good taste? “No” on all counts. There is no reason to stoop to gutter talk on what should be (with the exception of lana ward) a dignified debate.

          • plc97477

            but sometimes shoot or ouch aren’t enough

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/UHE4MJP5FHMFIEAOGEQHETUGDQ Rvn_sgt6768

          Relax, it was only a suggestion not a demand and by one who is probably a supporter not a foe. I know you are more than frustrated as many of us (US) are. Direct your anger at the appropriate target. Stay engaged please as we need your thoughts.

      • mah101

        While normally I would agree with you, stcroix, I think in this case bad language is called for. I really wish we had the ability to throw these worthless bums out of Congress, lock the doors, and start over. I’m beyond frustrated, feel that there is no way to get our legislative branch to work for us, and given that we are powerless to do naught but watch as these partisan fools destroy our economy, our jobs, and our society perhaps bad language is the least we can do to express ourselves.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dominick.vila.1 Dominick Vila

    An austerity program, while the economy is still recovering from a near fatal blow, is a recipe for disaster. Most of us when faced with a financial problem sit down around the kitchen table and try to figure out which expenditures are unnecessary or we can do without. We decide whether or not having a land line and a cell phone is a real necessity, do we really need to go to restaurants three times a week and do we really have to go to the movies one a week. Is that planned trip to Disney or 3-day cruise to the Bahamas an absolute necessity or can we spend our summer vacation at a nearby beach or lake. That’s the sort of thing most people would do when faced with an unexpected financial crisis. Unfortunately, that is not the case for our “leaders”.

    Government, in its infinite wisdom, decided to put in place a draconian sequester as a condition to raising the national debt ceiling, hoping that politicians on both sides of the aisle would be so intimidated by its consequences that tangible spending reductions would be achieved in the interim to preclude its implementation and crippling effects on our way of life and our economy. As usual, what should have been unthinkable is now a reality, not because our politicians are unaware of the consequences of a crippling sequester, but because they want to please all their constituents and make the other guy become the fall guy for political reasons.

    An $85B sequestration would cripple a lot more than welfare programs, which some Republicans believe is the only function or service provided by the Federal government. Defense, our intelligence agencies, food and drug inspectors, the border patrol and Customs office, air traffic controllers, research medical doctors at the CDC, and the folks that process our Social Security checks and MEDICARE claims would be either laid off or furlough, with devastating consequences to oureconomy and to the services we depend on for our national security and well being.

    Our leaders have to grow up in a hurry and stop acting like immature kids. The effects of the children games they play every few months go well beyond the immediate risk to our security and well being, our international credibility and, indeed, the global economy are at risk as a result of the focus of making the other guy look bad. Sit down, discuss the problem, reach consensus or risk being booted out in 2014 and 2016.

    • TheSkalawag929

      I agree with just about all that you said except for your comparison of government and households.

      As much as people want to equate the two they can’t be.

      To say that there is government discretionary spending is a misnomer in my opinion. When politicians cut spending they are cutting spending on necessary programs. Programs that are relied upon by tens of thousands of Americans. It’s not about movies, restaurants and vacations. It’s about it’s about Head Start, Child Vaccinations, Border Security and a host of other necessities.

      • http://www.facebook.com/dominick.vila.1 Dominick Vila

        Comparing government to household spending misses the mark, except for the fact that both must exercise prudence regarding what can be cut and what should remain in place.
        I spent 14 years at NASA and I am well aware of the value of the services most Federal government agencies provide, the impact of excessive spending reductions, and the waste inherent in wasteful spending.
        Let me give you an example. Most division managers are well aware of the distinct possibility of getting a budget cut if they don’t spend the previous year’s budget. To avoid that, they engage in frantic spending around mid August and throughout September. Much of it is unnecessary. Meetings that could be held on site or via video teleconferencing must be held in places like Las Vegas, Bermuda, or Nashville if there is a country music fan in management. Furniture and computers that are still in good condition are replaced. Questionable training is scheduled, and the list goes on.
        One of the most wasteful expenditures in government comes from duplication of charters between government agencies, and duplication of duties between civil servants and contractors. Civil servants who, in theory, should perform budget determination and management, and oversight functions, are often engaged in work that duplicates what contractors do. If they are not happy with the work contractors perform, replace them with another contractor, or terminate their contractors and do the work themselves. There is no need for duplicate effort.
        There are ways to reduce spending without crippling our economy and lowering our standard of living. An across the board 10% budget cut is not one of them.
        BTW, I support Head Start, child vaccinations, border security and most of the programs and services rendered by the Federal government. In fact, I believe the key to prosperity is public and private sector investment, however, I know for a fact that there is waste, and I believe efforts must be made to eliminate it.

        • sigrid28

          You are right, Dom. Duplication of effort is one of the most wasteful practices in ALL governments. In Chicago where I was a public school teacher, a new administration came in with every new superintendent. He or she hired loyal partisans, and the top administrators from the outgoing leadership found themselves in smaller offices sitting all day looking out the window with nothing to do. There might be two or three generations of these leftovers taking up residence in the huge warren of the Chicago Board of Education. Meanwhile, orders for new books, only allowed to be purchased by a department every six years, would sit unattended to until the deadline had passed, so that unused funds for books could be absorbed into the “general fund,” and used to pay these obsolete administrators forced to do nothing.

          Because I had a doctorate and two state teaching certificates, the principal of the school where I was assigned HATED my presence on the faculty. This only makes sense in a huge bureaucracy that was at the time described as a form of “institutional child neglect.” I was not assigned any classes or classroom for six months, but instead told to meet with certain students who required tutoring. We met in the library, in study halls, outside classrooms while I was a hall monitor. I just hung on until the principal was forced to give me classes and assign classrooms to teach them in. Then, she tried to drive me out by sequestering the ragtag collection of old books left in these classrooms for my students to use when the new textbooks they were supposed to be using did not appear, because the book order had not been processed in time, and the funds for them had to absorbed into the “general fund”–like I was saying.

          So I spend $350 of my own money, bought fifteen of the textbooks we were supposed to have, and took them from room to room in a plastic crate attached to a luggage pull. I devised ways for the students to read, two to a book, during class (often there were thirty high school students in each of the five classes I taught each day), and do homework assignments I devised to help them use what they read in class. I spent over a thousand dollars that year on photocopying so they could have exercises to take home with them. Along with their parents, we turned the false austerity imposed on us by a failed bureaucracy to into an inspirational experience for us all. The day I left the school only five weeks before summer vacation, because of a troubled pregnancy, the students received the new textbooks they should have had all year. What is the lesson here?

          Maybe if Republican legislators impose these destructive cuts on all of us, we can find ways to pull together as did I and my students. While coping, we must certainly expose the deficiencies of this method of austerity, and then certainly do all we can to vote them out of office.

        • elw

          I spent many years working in State and local government programs and will validate that the same frantic spending at the end of fiscal year goes on at those levels as well. I use to hate that time of year when people were frantically looking for things to buy. I once almost got fired because I could not spend all the money that was left over and it had to go back. There are many areas that all levels of government can save by eliminating waste and unnecessary spending.

          • idamag

            Sounds like you worked in the government, also. Instead or rewarding departments for spending less than last year, they penalize them. In order not to lose money next year, they hurry up and spend on things they didn’t really need.

          • Ramona Hauenstein

            When I left government, this type of spending was long gone. At least since the 80′s. I would be very interested in knowing where you two worked.

        • plc97477

          instead of giving kudos to people who save money from their budgets they are penalized

          • plc97477

            also Obama has done a good job of working to get rid of waste

          • MrStoneheep

            Huhg? Where? Have we forgotten that great Stimulus Bill?

          • idamag

            Although it was too little, what is was worked.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/HGC4BGWVYXV76PHZBPSPOOU5GA Independent1

            Yeah! More than 89% of stimulus monies went where they were supposed to and ended up creating jobs. The Stimulus was possibly one of the most successful projects the government has run in decades. If you’re thinking about Solyndra, that was a 500 million dollar attempt to be successful at a new energy technology out of 26 billion that was allocatedfrom the 90 billion appropriated for developing new energy sources in TARP. It was one of the very few failures – more than 87% of the 26 billion ended up starting successful new companies – which is exceptional in an R&D type exercise. Republicans that made an issue of Solyndra’s failure only proved how cluesless they are about the risks involved in new technology type ventures. In addition to all that, TARP together with the auto industry bailout unquestionably kept Amereica from falling into the GOP’s second created world-wide depression (Coolidge & Hoover showed them how to create the 1st one).

          • rustacus21

            Solyndra was a bush-era project & nitemare policy carry-over. Blame the conservatives for that one. But infrastructure jobs being the most urgent, it’s at least a GREAT start of spending on projects that pay great & have even greater, longer-lasting impact…

        • TheSkalawag929

          Comparing government spending to household spending in your previous post is what I took exception to.

          If you had presented your case as you did in this post using divisions of government and households as the units of comparison I would have readily agreed with you on all points because I can see divisions being more equal to the kitchen table setting.

          I like reading your posts. They are thoughtful, well constructed and well presented. I look forward to reading more of them.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/HGC4BGWVYXV76PHZBPSPOOU5GA Independent1

            Thinking that they can run a government like a house or business is one of the major failings of the GOP; their trying to do so is what generally leads America into some form of disaster.

          • TheSkalawag929

            They use that kind of logic because it is so easy to sell to their low information base.

      • idamag

        And if you think shutting down the government won’t affect you, you are not thinking the thing out. Every working person needs seven people in the service industry to serve him. Clerks, in stores, will be laid off when government workers have no paycheck. Food stamp usage will go up. Unemployment security funds will increase. Bankruptcies increase. Every faction of society must be doing good for all to prosper.

        • TheSkalawag929

          Agreed.

    • latebloomingrandma

      I think the sequester will kick in and almost has to, and cause real pain, before people actually believe it. All those “small government” people will soon get their wish. I just hope it hits and causes pain the most in the red states. They think the President is just using scare tactics. My Pa Senator, Pat Toomey, actually thinks the sequester will be “good” for the country. Sheesh!
      Too many small government and free market people, who scream socialism all the time, don’t realize that the bailouts, recovery act, etc.,were actually plans to save capitalism, rather than install a socialist state. Unfettered capitalism almost took us down. If you claim to be a”purist” for the free market, I’m sure you would have enjoyed living in the Great Depression, Part II.

    • Lisztman

      Or, as my wife is fond of saying under such circumstances, it’s time for the Republicans to put on their big-boy pants and do what needs to be done.

      They were elected not only because they mirror the wishes of their constituencies, but because they were presumably sufficiently wise to understand how Washington works and how to negotiate to a position acceptable to all. And they, themselves, should understand that, above all, the health and well-being of the Nation is paramount. We’re not talking gay marriage or the Southwestern Willow Flycatcher (not to belittle those programs). This is the employment rate, bank stability, the full faith and credit of the US Dollar here and abroad, and so on.

      The Republicans are pandering to every little wish of their extremist constituency, in the belief that this is their voter base, their bastion of support. If they continue to miscomprehend the necessities of compromise, they will find the extremists their only bastion of support — and will lose more or more elections (or, at least, those that they have a hard time rigging).

      • MrStoneheep

        And Obama isn’t pandering to his extremist constituency? Compromise? He GOT the tax increase he asked for, now he wants more. OK, let’s tax ALL Americans receiving any type payroll. A little 5% tax on those at even the lowest income level would do more of increasing revenues than hitting the top 3 % would do. If the Senior’s can be taxed on their SS checks, so can all receiving ANY Government moneys. While you’re at it, convince me it’s not appropriate for those receiving funds from the Government to pass a drug test to receive while I have to pass one in order to keep my position and pay taxes for them.

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/UHE4MJP5FHMFIEAOGEQHETUGDQ Rvn_sgt6768

          What President Obama didn’t ask for was the cuts your party wants to enact to pay for those tax increases. Hmmmmm as a “senior” who has already paid taxes on the money he is now finally receiving why should I now be asked to pay tax on these funds again? Maybe if I had only paid a less than 15% (carried interest) tax as perhaps you have then I wouldn’t mind it so much. Problem is I paid much more than that as I earned that money during my working lifetime. This is MY money I am getting back, not any of YOUR money so kindly keep your nose out of MY business. What does any drug testing have to do with me getting my money back in the first place? Or for that matter how does drugs or (in your case I am sure) any immoral behavior have to do with disqualifying a person from receiving money? I know let’s spend over $100 million to test welfare recipients like Fla. did to catch 4% I mean this sounds like a good return for our investment. Any idea how much they spent relative to how much they saved? You would probably think this a great idea.

          • Michael

            And let’s not forget to include mandatory drug testing on all working people. You know, testing them for cocaine and marijuana use. I’ll bet you would come up with a lot more people using illegal drugs who are working — and making very good money at it, like doctors, lawyers, stock brokers, etc. You’re totally right in what you say. We paid into SS for decades and had our income taxed already. SS is not an entitlement program and doesn’t contribute one dime to the deficit. If they want to help SS, then they (Congress) should repay the over 2 trillion dollars they stole from the SS trust funds.

          • plc97477

            lets add senators and representatives to that list

          • idamag

            plc, good one.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/HGC4BGWVYXV76PHZBPSPOOU5GA Independent1

            Michael, just a slight correction, SS and Medicare ARE the two ENTITLEMENT programs; they’re called entitlements because you paid into them and therefore are ENTITLED to receive their benefits. SS and Medicare are not WELFARE programs like SSI, Medicaid, food stamps, etc. , you have to meet certain income and other condtions to get Welfare – you’re not ENTITLED to automatically qualify for WELFARE.

          • MrStoneheep

            Don’t be too sure of yourself as to what my Party affiliation is. As you are a Senior and collecting SS, I agree with you. Re-read my post. I’m all too aware that this is a tax on already taxed income. Yes, there should NOT be an income tax on Social Security , but don’t look now, Rvn, there already IS!! Thank you Bill Clinton. He signed it and it was passed by a Democaratic House and Senate. We can’t blame the Repubs for that one. Seniors tested? I apologize as I was not explicit enough obviously. I was NOT referring to those on SS. I am referring to those on the multiple levels of welfare our taxes pay for. DOJ doesn’t want for there to be any testing. Why, when I have to submit to random testing to keep my position in order to have an income with which to pay those taxes they benefit from? Again, NOT SS recipients.
            I happen to live in Florida. You have really BAD information on that testing down here. Both of your figures are WAY off. DOJ stopped it regardless – - not too lkong before Nov. ’12. MMMm
            mmmmmm……
            Just for your information: I’m Left Center Dem.

          • idamag

            There is tax on SS

          • idamag

            Rvn, you are right. It was taxes when it was earned.

        • http://www.facebook.com/dominick.vila.1 Dominick Vila

          Should I thank you for calling me, and millions of other Americans, an extremist? What exactly makes you believe that we embrace extreme ideology, programs or concepts? If you believe helping a person in need, those who are uninsured and cannot get adequate preventive medical care, senior citizens who depend on a meager Social Security check to survive, and those who spend their last days in a hospice paid for by MEDICAID because they can’t afford a room in a hospital, should we assume you consider Jesus Christ an extremist as well?
          Do you think insisting in the need to pay for an effective air traffic control system, a border patrol service that can enforce our laws, a military that can defend our interests and protect us from harm is being an extremist? More to the point, do you believe our insistence to pay for the services we need and benefit from is an extreme concept?
          Which services or programs do you believe should be eliminated or reduced to meet your expectations?
          BTW, I don’t have a problem with drug tests, and I believe those earning livable wages should pay a little more in taxes. Unfortunately, even a proposal to raise taxes by 3% for those earning above $250K a year was portrayed as an attack on the middle class. I wish I was a member of that middle class…

          • MrStoneheep

            Dom, be more careful with your reading. I didn’t call YOU the “extremist”. That was a reply to Litszman when in his last paragraph he said Republicans were pandering to their “extremist” constituents. The point I’m attempting to make is to stop with the name calling and categorizations. Gets none of
            us anywhere. He had used it and I was (and am)curious why it OK one way but not the other. With that type rhetoric, the Repubs become correct when they cry about double standards.
            And BTW to you:I agree with you 90% of the way and even here. Where we differ is I try to see the “other” side from their view- point too, and I realize, they sometimes have an acceptable plan.
            I also do not believe in throwing ‘barbs’ just because they have a differing view than do I

          • MrStoneheep

            Dom, be more careful with your reading. I didn’t call YOU the “extremist”. That was a reply to Litszman when in his last paragraph he said Republicans were pandering to their “extremist” constituents. The point I’m attempting to make is to stop with the name calling and categorizations. Gets none of
            us anywhere. He had used it and I was (and am)curious why it OK one way but not the other. With that type rhetoric, the Repubs become correct when they cry about double standards.
            And BTW to you:I agree with you 90% of the way and even here. Where we differ is I try to see the “other” side from their view- point too, and I realize, they sometimes have an acceptable plan.
            I also do not believe in throwing ‘barbs’ just because they have a differing view than do I

          • Sand_Cat

            Obama has not pandered to his “extremist” followers; in fact, he has all too often dumped on even the more moderate. And in any case, what passes for the “extreme left” these days would probably be acceptable to Ronald Reagan.

            And his stimulus bill was a waste – to the extent it was – because something close to half of it consisted of tax cuts to placate the Republicans, even though it has been shown repeatedly that they have very little – if any – stimulative effect.

        • plc97477

          he has yet to receive the tax increase he wanted. stop getting your news from fox

          • MrStoneheep

            PLC, you typefy what it is about this particular newsgroup that is more than a little bothersome, but probably the same could be said of many; You don’t like what another says so you jump to conclusions of the individual that said it. Just because you feel something one way does NOT mean it to be so.
            FYI, I don’t watch Fox, but I sure as hell don’t watch the other propagandists either, i.e. MSNBC, or the best of the distorters, NBC themselves. If they can’t make the tape fit their agenda, they’ll edit it until it does. Happened again, huh?? Or perhaps
            you stay with the ‘perveyors of twist’ too much. ???
            No, you are correct to a point, but some on here have mentioed
            negotiated settlements. Well, it’s my feeling and many other Dems, it’s Obama’s turn to give a little anyway. If not, he gets what he was for not so very long ago; Sequestration. Perhaps you selectively forget that little point.
            Let’s not forget what this whole thread started over; The US of A going the way of Greece. If anyone doesn’t see that very real possibility, they have their heads where the sun doesn’t shine.
            It CAN very easily happen, or if you don’t like Greece, try Italy, or Spain, or France. Any government that is relying on taxation dollars to support themselves and their populace AND only half or less of that populace is paying that taxation, it is a program that is destined to fail regardless what % the top end is paying. All the Far Left writers in the world can not prevent this from happening with no more than a ‘pen of eloquence’. That’s real and a real fact, like it or not. Placing an itty-bitty 5 to 7 per-cent tax as a BAM will bring in a whole lot more than throwing ANOTHER 5% on the 1%er’s.

          • Sand_Cat

            Sorry, but Obama gave away the farm all through his first term; it is certainly not time to give even a “little” to placate the insatiable cultists that control the Republican party at this point. If he were dealing with sane and rational people who gave a damn about the country or their fellow man, perhaps more giving would be in order. Not under these circumstances.

          • idamag

            Yes, Sand. They don’t want compromise. They want it all.

          • idamag

            Where have you been? He gave away the store to Boehner during the first four years of his term.

        • idamag

          I was for raising everyone’s taxes.

        • daniel bostdorf

          Here is the truth:

          $2 trillion has been cut over the past two years from teachers, firefighters, police officers, loans for college students, and infrastructure investments….and….WE THE PEOPLE shouldn’t continue to pay the price for massive tax breaks for millionaires and billions of dollars in subsidies to oil companies….and multination conglmerates who sned jobs overseas and has destryoed the midddle class.

          • MrStoneheep

            Two TRILLION dollars, Daniel??? Do you really think before you blurt? Destroyed the middle class??? As for sending jobs overseas and tax subsidies, both parties have a hand in this. Speaking of subsidies and sending j0bs overseas, the real winner in that race is Jeffrey Immelt’s General Electric. What does he do other than run GE into the ground? I forget right now. NOT!! Remember NAFTA? I do believe President Clinton championed that one and now we’re hearing about a North American Union? Don’t see how we’ll compete with our neighbors to the south regarding compensation of employess in an NAU. CIFDA? From our side of the aisle, not the Repubs. A one world economy? Believe this is Soros’ area of expertise. Who gave billions to Egypt this weekend, the very day after Seuestration sets in? We can give billions to assist Argentina in their off shore oil exploration, but shut off our own? It’s not ALL the other sides’ fault. Let’s back up, clean the rhetoric, and ALL buckle down to FIX IT !! Quit the blame game and get something done. Stop the posturing for 2014 elections. Accept the accountability that it’s not a “which party ” problem, it’s a D.C. problem. If you’re in D.C., YOU’RE part of the problem. FIX IT NOW!!

    • MrStoneheep

      Dom, regarding Para. 2, who was it that signed the Budget Control Act in 2011? You’re painting with a broad brush here. He also threatened to veto ANY bill that in any way attempted to contravene the Act. Now, as it is convenient for him to do so, he feels the sequestration to be a bad thing? Hypocracy at it’s finest!
      85B? A pimple on an elephant’s rear. It can also be targeted to eliminate exactly the type frivoilty you mention w/ a later reply to Skalawag from your time with NASA. If you are such a great watchdog of all sacred, why did you not blow the whistle on such idiocy at that time?
      Is this 85B a spending cut of the presnt spending or is it a cut to the increase of future spending?

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/UHE4MJP5FHMFIEAOGEQHETUGDQ Rvn_sgt6768

        Your degree of equating the signing of a piece of legislation being equal to the creation thereof and other comments in your post tells me exactly where you are in this debate. The Sequestration was designed to PREVENT exactly what is happening which is the John Bircher Party from paralyzing the Government. If real Republicans had any balls they would throw these people from their ranks and get back to governing which is what they took an OATH to do and have not done for the past 5 years.
        I am all for eliminating waste but I also realize that they will always be waste to some degree as long as a program is in existence. The eliminating of programs is not the answer but reducing the waste to an acceptable level is. Defense has the largest budget so it stands to reason the most waste is also in their budget. Hence the most savings are to be found there also. I will give you another truism and that is as the population grows there is a greater need for more funds NOT LESS. And finally a last truism, as the population grows there is a means to greater revenues to address these needs also.

        • MrStoneheep

          More mis-information and categorizing than is worth addressing.
          Have a nice day. `:-(

          • Sand_Cat

            Why don’t you try? Perhaps you really don’t have facts to “address” any of it. Mis-information? Seems like you have a lot more to offer in that department.

          • idamag

            What misinformation?

      • http://www.facebook.com/dominick.vila.1 Dominick Vila

        Blaming a President for agreeing to sign legislation championed by the Republican party to avert a bigger crisis – such as defaulting on our obligations – is a classic Republican tactic. That is exactly what the GOP when they forced Clinton’s hand and he signed the repeal of the Steagal Act.
        I questioned the need for unnecessary travel and purchases more often than you think. The answer was an unabashed “because if we don’t spend our budget, the next budget will be reduced”. Quixotic stands sound great on paper, when you have to support a family, you either swallow your pride or put your family’s welfare at risk by quitting your job.
        The $85B spending reduction is a step in the right direction. Obviously, it will not eliminate or significantly reduce our annual budget deficits, but as a minimum it will send a message to Federal government bureaucrats who will, hopefully, be more prudent and realistic when they submit their budget requirements.
        I believe a 5% across the board budget cut would be manegeable if it became effecting on 10/1/13, the start of FY14. Unfortunately, it is scheduled to take effect on 3/1/13, two third of the way through FY13, which means that instead of a 5% annual budget reduction it will be around 10% in real terms. The timing of the sequester, and the fact that the budgets of several agencies have already been cut, suggest this could easily result in layoffs and furloughs, with serious consequences to those who depend on a SS check, the processing of a MEDICARE claim, or student grants to achieve their personal goals. Sadly, member of both parties have failed to point that out.

  • Budjob

    I think EVERY member of congress should be shipped off to Canada to learn how to function as representatives and law makers.Currently,they are benefiting only themselves.The entire situation is nothing short of disgraceful.My fondest desire is to have a law enacted whereupon,the citizenry of the United States could have EVERY member of Congress suspended and, a new election cycle proclaimed!

    • TheSkalawag929

      I say that it is the electorate. The Congress is made up of the people that were elected.

      So if you are unhappy with the Congress you should look at the mind set of the place from which they hail.

      • Lisztman

        This is true to an extent. But going back “up” to the earlier comment by Lovefacts, we expect our Representation (Senate or House) to be educated. To understand not only the wants and needs of their constituencies, but to have the insight to understand how those wants and needs play with those of the rest of the Nation — and how to maximize the value of the overall result to serving (or “appeasing”) those constituencies.

        Far too many of the current House and Senate are standing in their little squares, arms folded across the chest, foot-tapping, and declaring that if no one will play their games, they won’t play at all. This is NOT supposed to be the spirit of cooperation and compromise that was envisioned by the Founders. Anyone who reviews history (both the Declaration and the Constitution) will know that even those two documents were the result of major compromise on all sides; none of the participants came away 100% happy with all individual components; they came away satisfied with the total package.

        • TheSkalawag929

          “we expect our Representation (Senate or House) to be educated…. and how to maximize the value of the overall result to serving (or “appeasing”) those constituencies.”

          That may have been true up until the elections of 2010. After the Tea Party took over the republican party and the Citizens United decision that seems to no longer be the case as evidenced by the purging of moderate republicans and replacing them with ideologically zealous ones.

          I agree with you on what the Founders envisioned but until there is someone on the other side of the aisle willing to govern in that manner I’m afraid we are stuck with what we have. Intransigence and Gridlock.

    • mah101

      Please, no. I like Canada – let’s keep it pristine and unsullied…

    • plc97477

      at least dock their pay

  • jnsgraphic

    Political Corruption And The Obstructionist ‘Gang Of Pri€ks’ Are The Problem… and we will ALL pay for it! Its time for the losing party to compromise and get on with helping ALL Americans, stop protecting their ‘sacred cows’ and the rich; and slash corporate welfare and unnecessary military spending if they want to be fiscally responsible.

    • whodatbob

      The republicans believe they won!

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/UHE4MJP5FHMFIEAOGEQHETUGDQ Rvn_sgt6768

        IN reality they have won because they control the States and that is where the real power lies. It is time for Democrats to focus on State and local elections with the same fervor they use in National elections. Stop the gerrymandering and return the vote to the people.

        • whodatbob

          WE are discussing National Gov. Otherwise I agree with your post.

  • ococoob

    As a nation, we are rotting from within.

  • Lovefacts

    The Republicans yell Obama’s following European Socialism and that’s the reason why our economy and to prevent tanking our economy further we need austerity. Of course, they don’t recognize, or refuse to admit it, that austerity is a European model that has failed and the EU is turning away from.

    If we want to move forward, we need to elect individuals–epublican or Democrat–o the Congress and Senate who fulfill the following: are educated, live in the real world, don’t believe person attacks or demonizing opponents is politics, and finally that they are willing to put their constituents and the country ahead of narrow ideology and to–gasp–compromise.

    In other words, don’t elect ideologues and do elect educated adults. Oh yes, and do demand that the Congress works more than two days/week. I know, how about 5 days/week except when on recess. You know, like real people, instead of being one of those nasty taker, the kind who expects power and a min. of $177K/year for not even working a year’s worth of weekends.

    • latebloomingrandma

      I just heard Nancy Pelosi on TV, and she is great. She chastised the current House majority and said we are becoming a “drive-by Congress”, working only 3 days a week, when there is so much important business to do. Boehner has to the the worst speaker in history.

      • BDC_57

        That why their rating is only in the single digit.

  • charleo1

    Amen to raising the ceiling on Social Security. Both act as if that hadn’t occurred to them.
    And, we should be talking about an income scale for Medicare, instead of cutting benefits,
    or privatizing it. And what’s wrong with the government haggling with the drug companies? And, by the way, what happened to raising the minimum wage? On a sliding scale, we probably have more Americans working at poverty wage levels, than Asia, or India at his point. While the wealthy walk off with their share, and a good portion of what might be a living wage, that paid taxes, and could afford healthcare. But at this point, they can’t be bothered with either one, and that’s a
    problem. Just because they now control most of the money, and have become, the de facto controllers of public policy, should not mean they get to work millions of people for years at
    substandard wages, then complain about the little bit of Social Security they receive, or insist
    their healthcare be cut, because it is causing deficits, and they don’t want their taxes increased.
    My question, I would hope my President would ask them, is what did they expect was going to
    be the ultimate results of their policies? And, under what law of mathematics did they expect to
    be able to continue to have it both ways, low wages, low taxes, with a balanced Federal budget?

  • ram1020

    If we were to be honest, the problem with Greece is that they borrowed more than they could ever repay. If they can’t come up with a way of repaying it, they aren’t going to be able to borrow more funds which will lead to even worse austerity … even total collapse.

    England’s down grade was not a result of austerity, but of insufficient austerity. The UK budget was built on growth assumptions that aren’t going to be met.

    If the goal of the article is to encourage uninformed partisan bashing, it succeeds. If we are to solve our problems, we need to look closely at how we raise and spend our money to come up with a real solution. Tripe like this is harmful to any meaningful discussion.

    • Lisztman

      “England’s down grade was not a result of austerity, but of insufficient austerity. The UK budget was built on growth assumptions that aren’t going to be met.” One will not meet any growth assumptions with further austerity (if you consider the recent activity “insufficient”). Austerity is not the answer.

  • mah101

    Skalawag, you are unfortunately correct. These partisan, reality-denying representatives are elected by partisan, reality-denying voters in a process fueled by media outlets that inflame partisan divisions, play on controversy (even if there is none, they can always create it), and serve interests other than the peoples. Further exacerbated by an election process using corporate money to promote the interests of a few over those of the public. Serious reform is needed, but since reform must get through Congress, I have no hope that it is forthcoming.

    • latebloomingrandma

      Yes, and due to creative gerrymandering, we may be saddled wih a Republican Congress for the next 10 years. Democrats in the House actually garnished more votes, but due to gerrymandering of districts, the Republicans will hold more seats, thus maintaining the majority. And we have seen that Boner can’t hold a candle to Pelosi. This was actually one of the “goals” of ALEC; to install as many Republican governors and legislature in the country, to allow the redistricting to come under their “creativity.” Now we have these same Repub. states trying all kinds of voter and electoral mischief. Good God, we have to get the $$$ out of politics!

  • Lisztman

    First and foremost, don’t bother reading or responding to anything posted by “lana ward”. S/He is a known troll. Never has a positive comment. Never offers an actual suggestion on how to fix the problems. Spends his/her entire time on this website vituperating against the President, his policies, the Democratic leadership, and so forth. A typical Fox “News” ostrich.

    Second. The Republicans, once again, are demanding big cuts to the budget. Nevermind that they won’t tell us exactly where they would cut; how much they would cut; what would be the specific results and/or benefits of such cuts. Of course, their cows are more sacred than anyone else’s — so don’t touch defense. Don’t touch those tax loopholes (that benefit the rich) that Messrs. Romney and Ryan were touting last fall as the way to fix the budget. C’mon, Boehner, Ryan, et al. Close the loopholes. Tell us how much you’re taking out of Defense. Then I’ll listen.

    • english_teacher

      Bravo, Lisztman. If Lana and her ilk don’t want to have a reasonable discussion that cite facts and logic, then we should try to resist the urge to respond to them regardless of how idiotic and inflammatory their statements are. If all they want to do is come here to insult and throw out unsubstantiated talking points – and that does seem to be the case – then I’m sure we have better ways to waste our time than trying to reason with unreasonable people.

    • whodatbob

      Thank you for this suggestion. Might all the others of her ilk be added to the list!

    • MrStoneheep

      Mr. Lisztman, have to agree with all you say here. Minor exceptions might be the shot at Fox. What’s the difference between Fox leaning Right and MSNBC falling down Left? Lana needs get a life.

      • idamag

        So don’t rely on either one of them.

      • FredAppell

        I just want you to know that I agree with much of what you say. I found out recently
        that only a certain type of Democrat fits in on this forum. I come here less and less
        as time passes because it seems evident to me that everyone is stuck in this loop. I’m
        very left of center, voted Obama twice and I believe I am fairly well informed but I’m
        starting to notice that Obama has missed key opportunities which has weakened his
        Presidency. Even a lefty can’t express their displeasure of President Obama on the National Memo without some kind of drama following it. You’ll notice that there is
        a few of us on here that criticize both parties when deserved.

  • rafibaby

    When the republicans act in concert it is an indication that they are all working towards a specific goal. We have seen this before. When the Koch brothers define a social agenda, all Republicans work together to realize that agenda. When ALEC proposes specific laws, all Republicans work to pass those laws. When other conservative think tanks and super PACs define a specific strategy, all Republicans work in concert to follow that strategy. Now that Republicans want to impose European style austerity and bring our nation to the brink of poverty, we need to question who is dictating this strategy and why.

    • whodatbob

      Not only who, but what is the goal of this strategy. Are repugs being used by fill in the blank to distroy the US economy? Or are they being used to push labor into poverty again? Or any other reason? Just random thoughts. It is doubful Tea Partyers have enough brain cells to reconize that he/she is being used.

      • rafibaby

        Our electoral process is changing in an very obvious way. With the “Peoples United” decision at the Supreme Court, the door has been opened for corporations and big business to gain great influence in our governmental and political process. When our country’s citizens can gather up enough votes to elect an African-American for a second term, these great-influential powers tremble at the idea of losing power to the powerless, weak, and under-privileged. The United States was created with the ideal of government for and by the people. We are witnessing a change to where it will be for and by big-business. My fear is that they might just succeed.

        • whodatbob

          You, my friend, got my point. Tea Dopes are up to no good. I do not understand how so many intellengent, educated people can be sucked in by them.
          “Peoples United” Unbelievable! Think how bad it could get if tthe Roberts Court had more conservitive Justices.

    • idamag

      And Germany, who does not have an austerity program, loaned money to Greece who does.

  • highpckts

    Wow! Where do you get these “facts”?? Leave us a link so we can be as onformed as you are!! Not!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/gary.graves.18062 Gary Graves

    What is wrong with the republican leaders? They have lost their minds and quit thinking, or do they hate Obama that much to destroy the country?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OLT3BBICDAFJXQAHHKXXLJUCH4 Stella53

      Yes, to the latter – big time. Wish I could come back 100 or even 50 years from now just to see how historian portray how the GOP would rather have the country they claim to love so much go down the tubes because they just could not accept a black man as POTUS.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_B6RROC4IUESHT322QS5VJVPYRM Lynda

    Does the GOP understand the concept of monetary sovereignty, which is the case in our country and not Greece? Get back to me when they do.

  • BDC_57

    Lana on drugs

    • daniel bostdorf

      You are a troll too…only 3 words….all you can come up with? Pathetic…

  • charleo1

    What all the Conservatives, both moderate, and ultra, have done, is cause their politics to dictate
    their economic policy. What the Bush Administration did, is essentially cut taxes to unrealistic
    levels, while increasing spending on big ticket items like fielding 150,000 troops on the other
    side of the world. Supporting them in the most expensive way possible, with private contractors, and then, spend more hundreds of millions of dollars rebuilding the Countries we had just spent all
    this money knocking down. The problem was, this type of spending did not produce much
    economic activity in the U.S. That was supposed to be done with a new type of investment
    based on selling the credit to buy into real estate. Real estate that had to keep increasing in value
    to convert all those paper profits, to real profits. And how did Countries like Greece, that invested
    heavily in the scheme, become so convinced the profits were real? So, convinced, they based their future budgets on the projected profits? The U.S. Bond rating agencies vouched for the investments. Said they were triple A. And the insurance giant, AIG, sold insurance to those investing in the new product, that guaranteed a minimum rate of return, that was higher than any other investments offered anywhere else in the world. So irrespective of what Conservatives claim that produced
    the record levels of debt, it was not Social Security, Medicare, healthcare for the Nation’s poor,
    or even the pay scale, or pensions of the public sector workers. It was the selling of debt as a
    commodity. Combined with the permission to bet 40 times more money than anyone actually had.
    And, the losses associated with those bad bets, that caused the worldwide recession.
    So, what would make things worse? What Republicans are proposing. And, what they are threatening to do, to compel the Country to go along with their proposals. Plus, what they are
    saying about the state of the economy, and it’s detrimental effect on the overall confidence in
    the economy’s ability to continue to grow. In a nutshell, Republicans continue to allow politics
    to govern their remedies to grow the economy, and reduce the debt. Reducing the debt is not,
    in and of itself, the remedy, but a byproduct of sound economic policy.

  • daniel bostdorf

    Getting back to Conason’s point of the article that really sums up the idiocy of the now dying GOP:

    “Until now, the United States has escaped the fate of Europe, remaining the “sole bright spot” of steady growth in the global economy, because President Obama resisted the fiscal extremism of his Republican adversaries, and contrived to ward off recession with necessary spending. Now sequestration, with all of its dire social and economic effects, will provide a taste of what is to come under Republican austerity: a shrunken nation with a dim future.”

    Poster “lovefacts” hits the mark as well:

    “If we want to move forward, we need to elect individuals–epublican or Democrat–o the Congress and Senate who fulfill the following: are educated, live in the real world, don’t believe person attacks or demonizing opponents is politics, and finally that they are willing to put their constituents and the country ahead of narrow ideology and to–gasp–compromise.”

    All that the GOP, particularly Boehner, can do is the same ole same ole propaganda:
    Brand the president as a paradigm of fiscal irresponsibility.

    Boeghner keeps repeating lies in order to make you believe that he is being factual. Propaganda is particular way of presenting a message, usually false to be blatantly biased in favor of his lies.

    Propaganda:
    “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”—-Nazis Joseph Goebbels

    The GOP is driving us off the fiscal cliff with propaganda, not facts… leading us to “Greece,” not Democrats.

  • dokkou01@aim.com

    I don’t understand how cutting only 84 billion a year is going to affect anything when the government is going to spend more than 3 trillion a year on everything else. Its like chump change compare to the spending they have to do with medicare, social security, homeland security, education; I mean there is no significant cuts in this program when the government announces that they will raise taxes and spend more for welfare programs as well. So let me get this straight, people think that we shouldn’t cut programs when we already spend more money than we could make. The government makes a gross amount of 2 trillion a year and yet they have to spend more because of what. I think cutting money is what we have to do. We should cut spending on welfare programs, cut spending on the homeland security, money that goes to politicians, education, and many things as well as military. Also, lets get rid of the fed, IRS, and other agencies, lower taxes, and take away many restrictions that made this country great in the first place.

  • rustacus21

    I sometimes don’t know whether to scream in hysterical outrage or just pity for the stupidity of conservatives & enabling media who NEVER call them on the absolute, unquestionable & audacious lie about their psychotic perception of our nation’s ‘spending’ “problem”… as it’s simple a fact of life of any business (including the U.S. Govt), that ‘spending’ IS a consequence of doing business. but so is acquiring revenue – or in this case, the now over $10 trillion dollars lost to OUR government, via rich/corp only tax cuts from ’01-’12. Be it a family, business or government budget, there must be an equitable amount of cash flow coming in (taxes in this case) to balance against ‘spending’ (or expenses). The public that doesn’t understand this was duped by the same conservative scammers that sold bogus bundled subprime mortgage investments, never once imagining they were knowingly sold a fraudulent investment commodity. The ‘austerity’ scheme – there as here – is only designed to create just enuff hysteria & confusion to allow the hustlers of these scams to hide away their profits & then cry broke when dragged (finally) to court. No financial market scheme should be so complex the investment agent can’t explain it in PLAIN LANGUAGE to either regulators or consumers. This was the challenge to regulators of the ’01-’09 administration, who then just walked away trusting BaerStern, JPMorgan, etc., were being honestly ‘vague’ about the authenticity of Subprime investments. But if its that complex, it’s GOT TO BE ILLEGAL. Missing regulatory oversite aside, it’s time conservatives be excluded from all elections til they learn the difference from truth v. lies & Democracy v. capitalism. Their confusion over these simple, understandable concepts is destroying the nation & the world; or is that the ‘environmental’ tipping point we see up ahead?

  • docb

    EXACTLY..Projection from the rabid right…if they are blaming/accusing– they are doing just that themselves!

  • Lisztman

    MrStoneheep: Mr. Obama is NOT pandering to any extremists. He is doing what something more than 50% of the Nation says they want done.
    Compromise — no, he did NOT get the tax increase he asked for. He got a modest tax increase which was quite a bit less than he asked for. It was not truly enough. I’m waiting for the Republicans to advance those loopholes-to-close that Messrs. Romney & Ryan were proposing to close…
    Hate to tell you. Right now, all income IS subject to taxation, even at the lowest levels. I presume you’re talking an adjustment in the 1040 line about “individual deduction” — wherein a very small amount (relatively speaking) is at a 0% tax rate. Above that rate, yes, it’s subject to taxes. Someone earning $24K (~$12/hr) IS paying income tax. Someone receiving government assistance isn’t making enough to hit the taxable-income threshold.
    And “drug testing” isn’t even in the subject matter here. Why are you bothering to bring it up? If you don’t like a drug test where you work, take it up with your employer.

  • daniel bostdorf

    repeal The Sequester. Replace it with The Balancing Act.

    The Balancing Act equalizes budget cuts and revenue by closing loopholes for America’s wealthiest individuals and corporations, raising $960 billion in revenue. It also creates over 1 million jobs by investing in infrastructure, teachers, and putting money in consumers’ pockets, paid for by cutting wasteful Pentagon spending to achieve balance with non-defense cuts.

    According to Robert Borosage a co-sponsor of the act:

    “The sequester irresponsibly will cost over one million jobs and impede an already faltering recovery. It should be repealed, not postponed. Congress should turn its attention to jobs and growth, not to more austerity….The entire debate is upside down. America has a jobs crisis, not a budget crisis. The deficit is not out of control; it is already down 25 percent in relation to the economy, and falling faster than anytime since the demobilization at the end of World War II. The across the board cuts of the sequester are a ridiculous way to approach a budget. We need to fix the economy, not fix the debt. And you can’t fix the economy by focusing on fixing the debt. It is time to invest in America’s future, not strangle the weak recovery we now have….

    I realize thesimplicity of simply repealing seems too easy….but it makes a heck of alot more sense than the madness the GOP is putting our country through….for the 2nd time…do you remember the GOP government shut down of 1996?o

    Here is the truth:

    $2 trillion has been cut over the past two years from teachers, firefighters, police officers, loans for college students, and infrastructure investments….and….WE THE PEOPLE shouldn’t continue to pay the price for massive tax breaks for millionaires and billions of dollars in subsidies to oil companies….and multination conglmerates who sned jobs overseas and has destryoed the midddle class.

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