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The pushback begins, after reports that Pres. Obama will consider cuts to Social Security and...

The pushback begins, after reports that Pres. Obama will consider cuts to Social Security and Medicare in return for revenue increases. Nancy Pelosi says Democrats won't support entitlement cuts, and the AARP screams after digesting reports that a change in the way inflation is calculated could save billions by reducing cost-of-living raises for Social Security recipients.
Comments (139)
  • The Sane Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (357) | Send Message
     
    How did they expect to eliminate the deficit then?
    7 Jul 2011, 06:30 PM Reply Like
  • tigersam
    , contributor
    Comments (1711) | Send Message
     
    Increase taxes on Rich.
    7 Jul 2011, 07:42 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3333) | Send Message
     
    If you taxed the rich 90% it would still not make a dent in the debt or the deficit.

     

    Nevermind that the top 25% already pay 86% of all income taxes.
    7 Jul 2011, 07:49 PM Reply Like
  • KashMoneyKapital
    , contributor
    Comments (408) | Send Message
     
    How about this:

     

    put tariffs on products made in countries that pay disgustingly low minimum wages, thereby making it less efficient to produce overseas, employ more people at home, and increase tax revenue that way?

     

    Since China joined the WTO in 2001 we lost 50K jobs a month! REAL SIMPLE TO FIX THIS MESS. TARIFFS!

     

    I don't think entitlements should be cut. I think everyone should have everything we can afford, but we need to increase revenue without increasing income taxes. Tarrifs seem like a win win.
    7 Jul 2011, 08:06 PM Reply Like
  • KashMoneyKapital
    , contributor
    Comments (408) | Send Message
     
    Taxing the rich is a liberal war cry. Yes, we know the rich could afford a little more but in reality it won't make a difference. Taxing their jets, yachts, Ferraris, whatever, won't make a huge difference either.

     

    We need to bring jobs back home from Asia and Mexico and put people back to work at the CURRENT TAX RATES, thereby increasing revenue.

     

    Everything else is bullshit.

     

    And just so we're clear, free trade is a broken ideology. Free trade put America in the situation we are in today. I don't like Trump but at least he identified our problem in his brief, yet amusing campaign. WE NEED TO GET JOBS BACK HOME!
    7 Jul 2011, 08:08 PM Reply Like
  • bigbenorr
    , contributor
    Comments (778) | Send Message
     
    "I think everyone should have everything WE can afford".

     

    Speak for yourself, I want no part of paying for other peoples benefits. My concern is for my own maximum benefit.
    7 Jul 2011, 08:21 PM Reply Like
  • The Sane Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (357) | Send Message
     
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

     

    Yeah, they've tried that before. You might want to read a little bit of history before you recommend tariffs.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:06 PM Reply Like
  • KashMoneyKapital
    , contributor
    Comments (408) | Send Message
     
    agreed - but if 60 million more americans were employed and paying taxes our problems wouldn't be quite as bad as they are today.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:07 PM Reply Like
  • KashMoneyKapital
    , contributor
    Comments (408) | Send Message
     
    Sane investor -

     

    It worked besides weak banks. sound familiar?

     

    Go back to glass steagall and tarrifs - problem fixed
    7 Jul 2011, 09:08 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    You have to find a solution to the deficits assuming jobs will never return to the US until all of Asia, Latin America and Africa (6.3 billion people) are earning more and are less productive, i.e. not in the next 100-200 years
    7 Jul 2011, 09:10 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    fx

     

    You said a mouthful here and it is at the core of the problem for American labor. Equilibrium happens over time but that might be a long, long, long time. Asia, LA and Africa have competitive advantages in low skill labor.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:20 PM Reply Like
  • User 318630
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
     
    Yeah put tariff on everything, but isn't that what caused the great depression.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:23 PM Reply Like
  • Jessie Livermore
    , contributor
    Comments (17) | Send Message
     
    Tariffs on what exactly and how would you justify the reason? They stole our jobs? That's not a valid reason.
    The US was a major proponent of the WTO and its primary purpose is to liberalize trade, or and other words clean up all those tariffs that got in the way of free trade. It sure benefited the US these past couple of decades, but now that you are on the receiving end you want China to pay for your debt troubles? Your the primary recipient of all the stuff they produce anyway.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:24 PM Reply Like
  • Freedoms Truth
    , contributor
    Comments (900) | Send Message
     
    "Increase taxes on Rich."

     

    Whoever this guy named Rich is, he'd better hide his money!
    7 Jul 2011, 09:36 PM Reply Like
  • laogao
    , contributor
    Comments (88) | Send Message
     
    Can't you make more jobs available to Americans by removing all the illegal workers?
    But then who's left to vote for the Big O?
    7 Jul 2011, 09:36 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    do you have any idea what you would pay in restaurants, for food, for gardening if the illegals were booted out?

     

    Job growth will only be at the far end of the spectrum - hedge fund managers, doctors, waiters and cell phone salesmen - middle class "knowledge worker" jobs are all done in eastern europe and asia.

     

    I build the shared service center in poland for a US MNC, worldwide accounting, supply chain, and logistics, it was worth 6 figures+ to move 500 jobs out of the US. Not coming back - a local employee in poland earns $18-24Kfor a 60-80K job in the US. Do the math = 25 million per year in savings.
    7 Jul 2011, 10:06 PM Reply Like
  • laogao
    , contributor
    Comments (88) | Send Message
     
    Right, and POTUS paying 99 weeks of unemployment benefit to 14 million, along with no income tax from 10 million illegals (or 20M or 40M) hurts the economy and the deficit not one whit?
    Sure, living standards HAVE TO drop, to pay back the excesses of the last decade, but a lot of people that are looking for a job, at least here in Texas, would be willing to do gardening or wait tables.
    7 Jul 2011, 10:24 PM Reply Like
  • AnchorMan
    , contributor
    Comments (115) | Send Message
     
    I would be happy to keep taxes the same or even drop them if what you say ever had a chance of happening. I agree, get jobs back home, and its real simple. massive tariffs (200, 300%) on products made outside the USA. how many days you think it would take corporations to set up shops back home?
    7 Jul 2011, 10:29 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    They are not low skilled in Asia, Latin America at all. Learned more about financial modelling in Singapore in two months than 15 years wasting time in Western MNCs.

     

    And Africans will get it very soon-there are many SSCs in South Africa as well.
    7 Jul 2011, 10:35 PM Reply Like
  • AnchorMan
    , contributor
    Comments (115) | Send Message
     
    yea, that was 80 years ago. Why is it now working for China, India, most of southeast asia, europe, all these folks put tariffs on US products, and we dont return the favor. why? because the MNC's need to increase shareholder value, and they wont stop until that is accomplished, regardless of the outcome.

     

    I guess I can kinda see their point, so what if their profit motives ultimately destroy our nation, all of their execs will have little trouble hoping over the pond and relocating elsewhere, as they toss out their US passport for a British or French or German one. shit most of them already own homes overseas, can you really fault them for being prepared?
    7 Jul 2011, 11:01 PM Reply Like
  • Jason Rines (iThinkBig)
    , contributor
    Comments (2231) | Send Message
     
    Umm, the horse left the barn? Fund seeds, some anti-trusts, spend it or lose it cant just be for the little guy.
    7 Jul 2011, 11:29 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    I see a ton of low skill labor in these countries when I am travelling through them and it is much cheaper. That is not an exclusive statement.

     

    I can also point out higher skilled labor but most of them have been trained to western specifications so that was not grown locally. If the western demand was not there they would still be turning out low value and quality services/goods.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:23 AM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    Depends if you are talking about Laos or Singapore. I've seen factories in Vietnam that were amazing though.

     

    Asia has used the West for what it needs - an export market and source for techniques/expertise. That was the 1960's.

     

    Japanese manufacturing makes US production look like haphazard stone age techniques and processes.

     

    US is basically toast, especially with its aging population and exploding entitlements.

     

    Now they can function completely independently - and the West is dependent on Asian supply chain and financing.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:46 AM Reply Like
  • KashMoneyKapital
    , contributor
    Comments (408) | Send Message
     
    jessie livermore

     

    just how exactly has free trade benefited the US or its citizens?
    8 Jul 2011, 01:12 AM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    Free Trade benefited the top 10-15%, by providing free financing, intl profits, and cheap trinkets to mark up 200%. the bottom 85% leveraged themselves to the hilt and lost. Ooh and some banks but they were bailed out.

     

    there is no such thing as the "US" anymore, it's each person/corporation for themselves.

     

    if you want to see a functioning society look at NL, D, F. There is no free lunch, and the American exception is over.

     

    Work hard and pay taxes like Germany and Holland, or be lazy and pay taxes and end up like the UK, with a wealthy oberklasse and a decaying, dying society. There is no easy way out, frankly, I don't think you guys have your mojo anymore.
    8 Jul 2011, 01:25 AM Reply Like
  • Derek A. Barrett
    , contributor
    Comments (3534) | Send Message
     
    It's a good point. Germany has labor policies which many here would regard as "omg look at those lazy socialists living off the government." However, it's extremely hard to argue with the success of the German economy, the quality of its products, and the skill of its workforce. Germany is typically the benchmark against all other economies are measured.

     

    When things went bad, they didn't just outright cut people, they engaged in more flexible policies, which kept labor skills sharp, morale up, and still allowed for massive cost savings.

     

    Though on an aside, I think German cars are overrated in terms of reliability when you go to the low end of the product lines.
    8 Jul 2011, 01:33 AM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    D is the world's export champion - too bad Amis are stuck with those VW's from Mexico.

     

    Nothing like autobahn driving a 7 series on a crisp clear autumn afternoon...
    8 Jul 2011, 01:38 AM Reply Like
  • Jessie Livermore
    , contributor
    Comments (17) | Send Message
     
    Well that wasn't the point of my comment, but rather to point out to you that precisely because both China and the US are WTO members you can't just slap tariffs on anything you please without justifiable cause. I'm not trying to defend free trade, but merely playing devils advocate. I'd say we can both agree that free trade caused a lot of American manufacturing jobs to go overseas. Well, with less manufacturing being done domestically, the US turned to consumption to fuel their GDP and this is a more direct result of the current debt issue and not Chinese jobs.
    8 Jul 2011, 05:02 AM Reply Like
  • kmi
    , contributor
    Comments (4094) | Send Message
     
    It looks like that was one of the goals of QE, export inflation and force SE Asia to raise wages and eat rising commodity costs to hurt their competitiveness..
    8 Jul 2011, 07:40 AM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Asia still needs the west for an export market and some of the countries still have to be managed tightly for quality. You can see the lack of quality in their domestic projects which have no western requirements.

     

    Asia is also a big export market for US heavy manufacturing. Where this all ends up is some kind of rough equilibirum and everyone with their own unique set of problems.

     

    The US is toast with respect to keeping the same standard of living and especially with our underwhelming leadership.
    8 Jul 2011, 10:10 AM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    Problem is the West has no money anymore.
    8 Jul 2011, 10:11 AM Reply Like
  • KashMoneyKapital
    , contributor
    Comments (408) | Send Message
     
    how about this

     

    give the WTO the big middle finger

     

    pull out of afghanistan, iraq, and Libya, and start taking care of people at home.
    8 Jul 2011, 05:42 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    The flow of Mexicans is now negative, more leaving the US than entering.
    9 Jul 2011, 05:50 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    You guys forget that the US is still number one in manufacturing.
    9 Jul 2011, 05:52 PM Reply Like
  • Hellz
    , contributor
    Comments (171) | Send Message
     
    I like how quick the euphemism for tax increases got popular. "revenue increases" lol
    7 Jul 2011, 06:42 PM Reply Like
  • bigbenorr
    , contributor
    Comments (778) | Send Message
     
    Yeah, they still don't understand that those two are not synonymous. They pretty much go ahead and count their chickens before they hatch.
    7 Jul 2011, 06:50 PM Reply Like
  • youngman442002
    , contributor
    Comments (5131) | Send Message
     
    Increase the taxes to 100%..and then see how much REVENUE they get....econ 101...or the Laffer curve....and that is where it is going....
    7 Jul 2011, 06:54 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    And if Obama says stuff it to Nancy?
    7 Jul 2011, 06:56 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    If Obama sticks with this offer than he presented something serious. Which will require something serious in return. However they have to come a point where they have a budget that is 20% or less of GDP and that will take everything on the table and HUGE cuts.
    7 Jul 2011, 07:09 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    Obama's social security proposal is already DOA. He is neither fish nor fowl, a brilliant man but a weak spineless leader.

     

    Increases the chances for economic weakeness, bad policy, lower living standards.
    7 Jul 2011, 07:19 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    fx

     

    You are pointing out the dark side. I am looking at the bright side although the probability is less than 50/50 so my investment outlook has not changed.
    7 Jul 2011, 07:45 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    what's the bright side of higher deficits, inflation, weaker currency and declining real after tax wages?

     

    not trying to rain on your parade but it's just my germanic nature.
    7 Jul 2011, 08:13 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    My bright side scenario, which has a low probability, is lower deficits, inflation, reasonable currency and taxes. Not sure we can get ourselves organized to ever get on the road to this outcome. Everyone wants a check and a new flat screen TV.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:17 PM Reply Like
  • Freedoms Truth
    , contributor
    Comments (900) | Send Message
     
    Obama has the most mediocre mind of any president since Carter.

     

    Pelosi is a legend in her own mind. She forgets that she lost the speakership and she has nothing to offer and nothing to say worth saying.

     

    There is no budget not debt ceiling plan from the Democrats, what plans they do have they dont have the courage to put up for a vote. It took Republican pressure to put Obama's budget up for a vote in the Senate and it lost 97-0!
    7 Jul 2011, 09:40 PM Reply Like
  • Reel Ken
    , contributor
    Comments (3870) | Send Message
     
    Look, the fact is we are in a deep hole. There is no single way out of it.

     

    It is similar to a consumer with "over-the-head-debt". You must attack the problem from all angles. Spend a little less, here and there AND try and get money - second job, etc.. But, MOST IMPORTANT you have to cut out the STUPID STUFF. The stuff that got you in the hole in the first place.

     

    The Feds have to approach it the same way. Even if taxing the rich is just nibbling at the corners it is a move in the right direction. Same can be said about entitlement reforms, gov't pensions, etc..

     

    Cut out the STUPID STUFF. We all know what it includes, so stop complaining about taxing the rich. I'm rich and would gladly pay a little more if it would stop all this B-S.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:00 PM Reply Like
  • dividend_growth
    , contributor
    Comments (2896) | Send Message
     
    Compromise is the Washington way, and both sides will trillions from budgets far into the future and claim victories.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:20 PM Reply Like
  • The Last Boomer
    , contributor
    Comments (928) | Send Message
     
    Of course there are other solutions but nobody will like them, including me. How about letting all Bush tax cuts expire? This will take care of a big chunk of the deficit. Unfortunately this will be as much counterproductive for the economy as the conceived spending cuts. This morning Jim Paulsen said on CNBC that he is not worried about the deficit; big deficit is normal at this early point of the economic recovery after a big recession. What he was worried about are the premature attempts to bring the deficit down. I worry about the same thing. Both the democrats who want to raise taxes and the Republicans who want to cut spending fast and furious are wrong. Either of these actions would have the same contractionary impact on the economy.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:20 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    In the short term it's really stupid to cut spending. Spending was cut in 1937 and the economy double dipped into recession.

     

    Keeping spending and consumers afloat in the short term makes sense, but it's also true that at some point corporates and consumers have to pick up the slack.

     

    DC needs to send some signals to keep the bond markets happy, not to try to balance the budget in an Ayn Rand hissy fit.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:33 PM Reply Like
  • Freedoms Truth
    , contributor
    Comments (900) | Send Message
     
    Taxes were increased in 1936, in particular a tax rate increase on 'the rich', and bank credit regulations were tightened, that is what tipped the US into recession in 1937. It also didnt help that FDR was engineering a hostile takeover of the Supreme court that was an attempt to revive the socialist NRA (key New Deal program) that the Supreme Court declared unconstitutional.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:42 PM Reply Like
  • billbrad
    , contributor
    Comments (46) | Send Message
     
    A great start would be to reverse the Bush tax cuts. That in itself would erase about 3 trillion over the next few years. Had we not cut taxes in the first place, we would not be in this mess. The bottom line is that old and sick people will have to pay the price for the excesses of investment bankers and politicians who believe in tinkle down free-for-economics. These are the folks who sucked $60 trillion out of the world economy in the past few years. So, naturally the old,poor and sick should be responsible for that. We forget that that top effective tax rate right now is only 34%..the lowest in history. This compares to the 50's, 60's and 70's when the it was 45%. Yet, during those three decades, we had stronger growth in GDP than the last 3 decades (since Reagan). So raising taxes is the least painfull way to balance the budget, and while it will affect things to some degree, it will be less painful than sucking more business out of the economy buy attacking the buying power of the middle class. And, it more fairly assigns the economic responsibility to those who got us into this stinking mess in the first place.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:29 AM Reply Like
  • billbrad
    , contributor
    Comments (46) | Send Message
     
    raising taxes in 1937 is not what threw us back into recession. It was cutting spending and perhaps an even more impactful tightening of monetary policy by the Fed. Please check your history. Your are listening to right wing doublespeak and idiotic rationalizations for economic history which are frankly lies. It was the same hue and cry then about budget and deficits which threw us back into recession and our ill-times attempt to fix the problem.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:50 AM Reply Like
  • Derek A. Barrett
    , contributor
    Comments (3534) | Send Message
     
    You guys are making too much common sense.

     

    I should be able to cut taxes on everybody, ESPECIALLY the wealthy, and then start 4 costly wars (Iraq, Afghanistan/Pakistan, East Africa, Libya) that last over a decade, AND still grow the economy.

     

    What happened to basic high school "guns and butter" economics?

     

    I still want someone to tell me why the USA needs 15 aircraft carriers. That includes 11 Carrier Strike groups, which consists of:

     

    1 Aircraft Carrier
    2 Guided Missile Cruisers
    2 Anti Aircraft Warships
    1-2 Anti Submarine Destroyers or Frigates

     

    Romans used to do that crap with their legions, and yeah, it cost them a little bit of money to maintain that. But we don't have barbarians at the gates.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:59 AM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    bill

     

    The 70's sucked and had high inflation and were volatile. Volcker had to unwind a lot of the 70's problems in the early 80's by throwing us into a deep recession. We were still living off post WWII dominance in the 50's and 60's. I think we should call those days way over. We live in a completely different world and cherry picking policies from those decades could be disastorous.

     

    When people make money it is a reflection of their productivity. We can all argue about which industries we like but that is subjective and a distraction. When the government taxes it is a reflection of their transferring the results of that productivity to someone else. Some things the government must do like roads and military and that is the cost of having a reasonably organized society. When government takes over more and more then the problems begin as they crowd out private sector investment and returns. The choice of a business or worker is to work less because it is not worth it, cheat on their taxes or legally work on tax avoidance schemes or raise their prices. For example and in my own case my wife does not work because our marginal tax rate is so high it is not worth it. She would work for free for 6 months before making a dime.

     

    I have no problem taxing the uber wealthy more but they are not going to close the budget defict by themselves and they will raise prices if they are running a business. But make no mistake we have to go after small business owners and the middle class to fund all the free stuff people want.

     

    By the way if Warren Buffet wants to pay more taxes he should send in a check rather than putting his money into foundations and tax free vehicles. And we should get rid of long term capital gains and see how excited he gets.
    8 Jul 2011, 10:31 AM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    We need to cut military spending hugely but keep up our Special Forces investments. A few of those guys are worth a whole platoon.
    8 Jul 2011, 10:33 AM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    You took the words "remember 1937" out of my mouth.
    9 Jul 2011, 05:54 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    Top rate in 1929 was 25%. 12.5% on capitol gains. Really helped.
    9 Jul 2011, 05:57 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    Biggest gains against Taliban are night raids done by small groups of Special Ops.
    9 Jul 2011, 05:58 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Our Special Operations units are simply unbelievable in their effectiveness.
    9 Jul 2011, 06:06 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    Afghanistan, Iraq , effective ??

     

    more like a giant waste of time and money.

     

    I wouldn't complain one bit if Al Qaeda would get back on the horse and conduct multiple suicide attacks against global investment banks. Now that would be something to see.
    9 Jul 2011, 06:12 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    fx

     

    Now your whacky bitter side comes out.

     

    And by the way Afghanistan fell in a few months and it was basically dozens of special forces plus the air force.
    9 Jul 2011, 07:05 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    So effective USA has been stuck there for 10 years, trillions wasted, and the Taliban are simply waiting for USA to get sick of losing and leave. Germans, British, Canadians at least have the sense to get out and stop helping the helpless USA. Says something, no?

     

    They will bleed the USA for 10,20, 50, 100 years until you guys run to the rooftops like in Hanoi. No foreign power will ever win in AF.
    9 Jul 2011, 07:54 PM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    fxmavin -

     

    As a Canadian I should note that Canada became directly involved over 8 years ago because our NATO ally, the US, had been attacked (i.e. 911) by elements deliberately shielded within Afghanistan by the Government of that country. We focused our efforts for 8 years in Afghanistan while some others were diverting their efforts at a critical time to Iraq, did a creditable job both militarily and in civilian reconstruction there and this cost us significantly in both blood and treasure. We have now scaled back our efforts to focus on training Afghani military and police personnel and continuing with civilian reconstruction efforts.
    9 Jul 2011, 08:15 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    Al Qaeda obviously had to pay for 9-11, and the Taliban were unable under muslim custom to deliver their guests to a foreign power.

     

    Frankly, apart from the Al Qaeda question, AF was much better governed under the Taliban, as IQ was much better governed by Saddam Hussein from the point of view of stability. The entire AF campaign has acheived nothing besides motivating Al Qaeda to move to Somalia and Yemen, closer to the action in Egypt. Wow.

     

    I do feel sorry for the poor saps who have to pay for these incomptent foreign adventures which really achieve nothing, except for bankrupting taxpayers.
    9 Jul 2011, 08:24 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3333) | Send Message
     
    FX,

     

    So such Deeds should go unpunished?

     

    Screw You,

     

    Then we just should have Nuked 'Em and saved some money.
    9 Jul 2011, 08:46 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    I said " AQ had to pay for 9-11". what don't you understand about that?

     

    Oh that's right, it was Iraq behind 9-11, you must be Dick Cheney !
    9 Jul 2011, 09:46 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3333) | Send Message
     
    "AF was much better governed under the Taliban, "

     

    "incomptent foreign adventures which really achieve nothing"

     

    Really?

     

    I made no reference to Iraq.

     

    The one good thing Bush ever said,

     

    "We will make no distinction, between the terrorists and those that harbour them"

     

    The Taliban, should be or have been exterminated as well.

     

    I could give a Rat's Ass about their religious beliefs.

     

    If Islam prevents them from contributing to civilized justice, then it (Islam) is nothing other than a demonic cult that deserves to be eradicated just like Hitler and his Nazis, Branch-Davidians, Jim Jones or similar.
    9 Jul 2011, 10:13 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    Then you are failing, as Taliban still rule AF, and are just fighting a war of attrition (and are winning). Likewise IQ.

     

    Taliban eliminated the opium crop, controlled the warlords, controlled the streets. The current AF govt. is no different from the Soviet puppet regime in the 70's and will fall as soon as the Amis pack up and leave, leaving the Taliban in control.

     

    USA is out $1+ trillion dollars for nothing, soldier's lives, civilans killed, what a waste.
    9 Jul 2011, 10:24 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    fx

     

    Do you know what I am referring to when I say Special Forces are effective?

     

    You are going way off the road making other arguements.
    9 Jul 2011, 10:29 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    I suppouse you are referring to their ability to conduct very intricate, dangerous ops with amazing skill and precision. Indeed they can, although my SAS boys are underrated and cost alot less (and speak more foreign languages).

     

    Yet all these operational skills are useless if there is no political endgame. This isn't world war II where you capture Berlin and all the other enemy generals automatically surrender.
    9 Jul 2011, 10:38 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    fx

     

    SAS boys are not underrated if anyone is really looking at what they do. Besides US special forces and SAS train together a lot.

     

    So my original point was that the SF were very effective in bringing down Afghanistan in a few months. What happened after that was a lot of ineffective wandering around by politicians and regular army.

     

    Agree that the political end game has been hazy. Once military missions turn into state building then it becomes a mess.
    10 Jul 2011, 12:21 AM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    Tomas

     

    It is true that the CIA aided by SAS incursions and strategic bombing on a significant scale enabled the Northern Alliance (i.e. non Pashtun ethnic groups) to defeat the Pashtun supported Taliban Government of Afghanistan in short order 8 years ago. It is also sadly true that the current Afghan Government army and police remain essentially non- Pashtun; an almost fatal flaw given that Pashtuns constitute about half the Afghani population and the core of Taliban support.

     

    Special forces (along with drone attacks and other whiz-bang stuff) can be effective where there are good sources of local intelligence and this is in aid of local allies. Used in isolation of these other factors it simply increases local opposition to the country deploying such special force attacks.
    10 Jul 2011, 11:55 AM Reply Like
  • Freedoms Truth
    , contributor
    Comments (900) | Send Message
     
    Please check your history and stop spouting ignorance. Yes, in the 1920s the top tax rate was 25% and the economy boomed enough it was called the roaring twenties.
    -The top rate in 1932 was raised to 62%.
    - In 1936, the top tax rate was raised again to 79%.
    After each tax hike, the economy fell backwards and the amount of money raised was less than expected.
    Your are listening to left wing doublespeak and idiotic rationalizations for economic history which are frankly lies. It was the same hue and cry getting 'the rich' to pay which threw us back into recession.
    10 Jul 2011, 02:26 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    So keep cutting taxes and monetizing the exploding debt, Mr. Weimar. Cut spending too. I dare you.
    10 Jul 2011, 02:28 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Bob

     

    It is not a reach to say our SF's can do about any mission anyplace in the world provided they are given free reign and support. For example we did not have a whole lot of help in the Osama mission.

     

    But they cannot hold a country by themselves as that is not their design. I am not even sure I would call Afghanistan a country. It is more like a bunch of tribes and warlords and the latter will sell out to the highest bidder. Local opposition is more related to the highest bidder. Kind of like the US once I think about it.
    10 Jul 2011, 03:57 PM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    Tomas -

     

    There is no doubt that the US SFs are a potent military tool. Like any other military to or strategy it has its limits of effectiveness.

     

    I don't think that people, for example, fully appreciate how close the successful strike against Osama came to failure (not because of any lack of skill, planning, preparation or daring but simply because of the complexity and difficulty of the task). Think back as well to the failed attempt by military action to extract the Iranian Embassy hostages during the closing days of the Carter Administration.

     

    The successful strike against Osama is a classic example of where SF with adequate on site intelligence support can be effective. There are many other tasks where SF simply would not be appropriate or effective. You mention Afghanistan. One can debate whether or not any NATO action, once the Taliban Government was toppled and the Northern Alliance forces in that country were in power, was appropriate aside from focused attempts to capture 911 related personnel and give continued economic support to the new government. However, once the decision was made to give further direct military assistance to the new Afghan Government, confining NATO involvement to SF ops would not suffice.
    10 Jul 2011, 04:41 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    Yet the economy tanked under the lower tax rate. The roaring twenties? 90% margin rate on securities, rigged stock prices, everyone felt rich.
    Sorry, Freedoms, don't believe in taxing the rich, just don't believe in CEO's demanding 400% more than they made in the 70's. Middle-class drives US economy. They've been pissed on.
    10 Jul 2011, 05:36 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Bob

     

    I think you are repeating my points.

     

    The only things I will quibble with is that comparing SF's and military in general under Carter to what we have now is night and day. But beyond that everything the SF's get involved in are very dangrous and can fail. That is why the get the assignment.
    10 Jul 2011, 06:18 PM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    Tomas -

     

    My basic point is that SF is a special tool that, in certain circumstances and with adequate intelligence and other local support on the ground, can deliver a uniquely effective special strike capacity on a small scale. Seen as anything other than that (Particularly if simply seen as a way of cutting through diplomatic and other complexities) can only lead to grief for the power deploying such SF.
    10 Jul 2011, 09:06 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Bob

     

    People don't know half of the capabilities of SF's but that is understandable as they don't advertise. You underestimate just how much these teams can do if you think they only make "small scale" impact. But I am closer to them than you most likely.

     

    On the diplomacy side they are much better educated to deal with complexities and multiple languages than regular army.

     

    Certainly they are not an occupying force. Other than that look out.
    10 Jul 2011, 11:01 PM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    Thomas -

     

    Thank you for alerting me to the need to clarify what I meant by "small scale". What I mean is that the number of personnel directly involved in an operation is inherently small (less, often much less, than 100 in all but exceptional circumstances). Obviously, as the recent strike into Pakistan illustrates, the impact of can be huge.

     

    I stand by my earlier point, however, that there significant limits to the situations where the use of SF personnel can appropriately and effectively deployed.
    10 Jul 2011, 11:14 PM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    Tomas –

     

    I thought you’d like the following.

     

    Here is a good example of the sort of on the ground cooperation and investigation that must be in place before SF operations have even a ghost of a chance of success.

     

    www.guardian.co.uk/wor...
    11 Jul 2011, 03:10 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    Happened to see a documentary last night how Seal Team Six totally cocked up in Grenada and Somalia.

     

    One success, and now they are superhuman. In the case of failure, lies and disinformation until the truth comes out 20 years later.

     

    Forgive me if I never trust a single word from the Govt ever again in my life.
    11 Jul 2011, 03:20 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Bob

     

    Let's not confuse the CIA with SF's operations. You are mixing apples and lug nuts.
    11 Jul 2011, 05:46 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3333) | Send Message
     
    The Elite Special Forces.

     

    www.grouchyoldcripple....
    11 Jul 2011, 05:49 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Somalia was not SF led and leave it to politicians, namely Clinton in this case, to not give the US forces there the heavy armor they requested. That was screwed from the top down.

     

    Most SF operations you never hear of as they are in and out and have a small footprint. They also don't ask for the credit because they don't want to be known and the regular army wants the credit anyways so they step into the limelight.
    11 Jul 2011, 05:49 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    OK guys. Warfare, at this point in time, will be fought by SF and won by those with the best tech toys. Nations will not declare war on us, just shadowy groups and groups backed and financed by unfriendly nations. SF and tech will (and are) be used to hurt these groups without occupying land. We can do this now in Afghanistan. With a corrupt government and treacherous allies in the armed forces, it is time for us to pull.
    11 Jul 2011, 08:15 PM Reply Like
  • Derek A. Barrett
    , contributor
    Comments (3534) | Send Message
     
    I was going to say the same thing OptionManiac, and agree with you

     

    US future warfare footprint is kinda the same thing we've been doing in Pakistan and Africa over the past 10 years:

     

    1) CIA
    2) Robots
    3) Special Ops
    4) Cyber/electronic and financial warfare

     

    There have been tons of cyber attacks in the Baltic States (Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia), and those are previews of things to come. And of course the famous worm designed to infiltrate the Iranian nuclear facilities.

     

    Which is why I'm buying lots of RTN
    11 Jul 2011, 11:46 PM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    Fine. I order an immediate 5% luxury tax on all clothing items over $75, all alcohol over $20/bottle, all autos over $30,000, jewelry over $500 and all cell phone bills over $50/month with proceeds to investment in airports, roadways, high speed rail. Herewith all payroll taxes are also lowered to zero for two years.

     

    All unemployed must attend technical training for 20 hours per week and work on infrastructure/tourism projects for 10 hour per week to qualify for benefits.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:23 PM Reply Like
  • The Last Boomer
    , contributor
    Comments (928) | Send Message
     
    Isn't this just re-distrubution of wealth: increase taxes for the relatively wealthy and decrease them for the people with jobs. Socially it may be desirable but from an economic point of view the effect on the total demand might be zero. I would argue that we need a real net tax cut plus redistribution of government spending towards programs with high multipliers such as unemployment benefits and infrastructure projects. We need to take care of the deficit over time but not NOW. The economic recovery is so fragile that it took one earthquake to almost derail it.
    7 Jul 2011, 09:32 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Like the idea on making UE take technical training and work every week for the UE check.

     

    Have to kick them out of the house and away from the couch for a number of them. Let the squealing begin.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:30 AM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    My favorite park in New Jersey along the palisades (on the hudson river) was built during the depression, 00s acres of hills, trees, river views, great for biking.

     

    Something to put on a resume, skills learned, connections built...
    8 Jul 2011, 01:03 AM Reply Like
  • tigersam
    , contributor
    Comments (1711) | Send Message
     
    All trees are cut on both sides of highway and replaced by ugly walls. NJ has no more trees. Name should be changed from Garden state to Cement State.
    11 Jul 2011, 08:57 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    You don't know NJ, parts are beautiful, and yes some parts are pretty ugly.
    12 Jul 2011, 04:43 PM Reply Like
  • tigersam
    , contributor
    Comments (1711) | Send Message
     
    By the time you wrote that sentence beautiful part was already replaced by ugly.
    12 Jul 2011, 06:36 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    Must I deal with you cynics.
    12 Jul 2011, 08:39 PM Reply Like
  • HiSpeed
    , contributor
    Comments (1126) | Send Message
     
    More of the same...

     

    *yawn*
    7 Jul 2011, 09:32 PM Reply Like
  • maudie
    , contributor
    Comments (479) | Send Message
     
    "...in return for revenue increases." My 5th grader knows what a "revenue increase" is, SA. Why don't you just say it? You're safe; It wasn't in quotations, after all. Another night in the Lincoln bedroom?
    7 Jul 2011, 09:33 PM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    We are seeing some fairly classic public negotiation strategies in play here.
    1. The Tea Party true believers are digging in and promising to make life difficult for any (whether within or outside the Republican Party) who break ranks with their vision.
    2. The Republican Party leadership in the House and Senate are rhetorically siding with several of the core Tea Party demands while indication that provided they significantly achieve these stated aims, they are prepared to compromise on details (and may, in fact, compromise further provided that these compromises can be profiled in terms not opposed to core Tea Party demands).
    3. The President focuses on the potential weak point in the Republican Party leadership in the House and Senate position (rigidity on the issue of tax increases for the top 5% income earners) and continually broadens the scope of discussions in the hope that, with more elements in play, avenues for future compromise open up (and, if a breakdown in negotiation threatens, then he can assert that he was always prepared to discuss all issues and seek a broad and deep compromise).
    4. The Democratic Party House and Senate leadership assert that they will continue to stand up for the interests of those dependent on social programs and advocacy groups for such beneficiaries strongly assert that these programs should not be the focus of cuts.
    5. Advocates for business and agriculture likewise advocate against cuts to programs which benefit them while many of them and social conservatives more vigorously advocate deep cuts in government programs (but not necessarily those related to the military).

     

    The real question is the extent that the leadership of both Parties remain capable of maintaining sufficient party discipline and flexibility so as to be able to negotiate a compromise with the leadership of the other party (and the extent that the US system of government will allow the preparation and enactment in a timely fashion of a suitable compromise in this political environment. The choppy history of the TARP program legislation in 2008 gives one pause on this score.
    7 Jul 2011, 10:31 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Bob

     

    This talk of compromise is ridiculous. They need to cut spending from about 25% of GDP to 20% or less. There is no money laying around to plug that gap it needs to come out of budgets or we will be issuing more debt.

     

    You can pick your time periods and how you get there but you cannot pick your numbers.

     

    The politicians talk and argue back and forth like they are still relevant. As the debt mounts the polemics become just noise.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:36 AM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    Tomas

     

    How are tax increases and closing tax loopholes inconsistent with closing the debt and deficit gaps? Are these not the issues of compromise that are most contentious and upon which compromise needs to be considered?
    8 Jul 2011, 12:54 AM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Bob

     

    The gap is so big I am not sure they have any choices on tax loopholes. They likely all need to go along with any other favored pet tax rules. Then they need to cut budgets hard at the Federal level and everything needs to go on the table and get whacked.

     

    Tax increases are a direct hit to the economy and more jobs will go overseas and consumption will be reduced even further. That is always the easy lever for policy makers to grab because they don't have to think and they can be home for dinner but that is not going to work in an interconnected world with a lot of choices for capital flow.

     

    Compromise is for people who have control of their destiny but I think we lost that control years ago.
    8 Jul 2011, 10:38 AM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    Tomas -

     

    I think the best response to your latest comment to me is that
    (a) no one element in the ultimate budget package agreed upon will by itself solve the debt and deficit problem but the broadest balanced array of increases in revenue and decreases in expenditure (where these changes themselves aren't significantly counterproductive to the economy, the fiscal balance or the real well-being of people) offers the best chance of proving sucessful, and
    (b) whatever array is finally settled upon needs to appear reasonably fair to all those who are expected to experience reduced benefits or increased costs as a result of the new budget or
    (i) the enactment and implementation of the budget in this form will face significant opposition, and
    (ii) pressure will build up later to back-peddle in future budgets thereby undoing whatever good has been achieved..
    8 Jul 2011, 04:06 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Bob

     

    Yes & no, no, yes and who knows.

     

    The government cannot look at more taxes or as some slick operators like to call revenue enhancement. This will lower demand from the private sector and means government has to increase demand. This is a negative circle of activity. Government spending driving the economy is crack cocaine. It feels good but the health of the economy is falling apart even as people feel good temporarily.
    Government taxes only penalize productivity.

     

    No action will ever be considered fair because this is not about fair. We have built an organized robbery system in the US and fair has nothing to do with it.

     

    Driving inflation and going broke is always the last bastion of the weak and indecisive.
    9 Jul 2011, 12:12 AM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    I think by "fair" he means the pain should be spread equally around. Isn't that what it will all come down to? Everyone has to feel some sort of pain.
    9 Jul 2011, 06:19 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Option

     

    I am a bit pessimistic we will ever get to agreement in this country about "fair" as cheating is institutionalized. Just seen an article last week that 1 out of 9 UE claims are fraud. Lord help us.
    9 Jul 2011, 07:08 PM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    OptionManiac -

     

    You're correct but it would be even more accurate if I had said 'equitable' rather than 'fair'. Everyone should feel that an honest attempt had been made to ensure that everyone was being called upon to shoulder a share of the load that it is reasonable that they carry in the circumstances and that no one is getting off without a comparable burden in equitable terms.
    9 Jul 2011, 07:51 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    Yeah, I'm dealing with an employee who wants to be unemployed. We pay 70% wage for anyone who needs family leave (and these are low paying jobs). Dr gave him go ahead to come back but now his back is killing him. Employers in my state can stick it to employees who play this game, as long as we have the proper back-up paperwork, which we are diligent with. I'm all for gov't safety nets, but too too many people scamming the system make the thought unpalatable for most of us.
    10 Jul 2011, 05:43 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    Totally agree, but there will be pain. But so what, will make us a stronger people.
    10 Jul 2011, 05:44 PM Reply Like
  • joe kelly
    , contributor
    Comments (1787) | Send Message
     
    Party doscipline and loyalty are all but gone from the democratic party. The republicans will stand together even if some of them have to hold their noses.

     

    I have some experience in this matter. Anarchy best describes the rank and file democrat voting bloc. It's every candidate for himself. In the end, the tea partiers will vote republican 95% of the time. Democrats are abandoning Obama in droves because he isn't "liberal" enough. You never heard and republicans abandoning Bush when he was president.

     

    7 Jul 2011, 10:56 PM Reply Like
  • DianeLee
    , contributor
    Comments (359) | Send Message
     
    True, the Liberals and the Unions are disappointed when Obama is forced toward the center, but where are they going to go? They'll still vote for Obama, and when the election is over, Obama will follow his established patterns. In the meantime, Obama has the "bully" (and you can take that quite literally) pulpit and all the props. The best we can likely hope for is to hand him a Republican majority in both the House and the Senate, and remind him every single day that he has a legacy to protect in the real world.
    7 Jul 2011, 11:31 PM Reply Like
  • davidbdc
    , contributor
    Comments (3174) | Send Message
     
    Memo to the AARP:

     

    Your members have had the most opportunity to vote for all the idiots that spent all the money!! Therefore you are the MOST RESPONSIBLE for the financial situation the country is in. And that means you should shoulder the largest piece of the burden to fix the mess.

     

    As an additional reminder, you haven't EARNED these benefits. They were promised to you by corrupt politicians in exchange for your votes (and you fell for it). Your taking out much more than you put in (on average) and that can't be described as earned.

     

    We have to cut 40% of all government spending just to stop adding to the national debt. That means that social security and Medicare and Medicaid will have to be cut. So will Defense spending, So will bureaucrat's pay and benefits. So will entire government agencies, etc, etc, etc.

     

    Please feel free to lobby for things like means-testing social security. Raising the retirement age. Weeding out all the fraud in the disability part of SS. Feel free to propose whatever you'd like in terms of how to reform Medicare in a way that substantially reduces the cost to the government.

     

    But please stop with this nonsense propoganda that seniors have EARNED the benefits this country now provides for them. Please start reminding seniors that their grandchildren will soon be paying for all the "entitlements" that they are consuming. Please remind seniors that states will continue to cut public education funds to pay for Medicare. Please remind them that they themselves voted for the idiots in Washington DC that have gotten us to this point.

     

    In short, stop being a gutless lobbying organization willing to further ruin the country in order to provide your special interest with something in the short term.

     

    Regards,
    7 Jul 2011, 11:10 PM Reply Like
  • bigbenorr
    , contributor
    Comments (778) | Send Message
     
    Well said sir!
    7 Jul 2011, 11:18 PM Reply Like
  • bob adamson
    , contributor
    Comments (4559) | Send Message
     
    David –
    Isn’t the same line of argument as that in your “Memo to the AARP” equally applicable to the top 5% of income earners insofar as possible increases to their rates of taxation are concerned.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:59 AM Reply Like
  • Reel Ken
    , contributor
    Comments (3870) | Send Message
     
    I agree with what you say, as far as reforms, etc.

     

    But take some issue with your argument that seniors haven't "earned" the benefits.

     

    In fact, both seniors and employers have paid a Medicare tax on earned income.

     

    The politicians didn't promise us benefits in return for votes, they, in fact, UNDER-TAXED us in return for votes. This distorted the cost/benefit analysis.

     

    Don't blame the voters for their ignorance, the blame goes squarely on the politicians for knowing how to "shear" the sheeple.
    8 Jul 2011, 07:01 AM Reply Like
  • davidbdc
    , contributor
    Comments (3174) | Send Message
     
    David –
    Isn’t the same line of argument as that in your “Memo to the AARP” equally applicable to the top 5% of income earners insofar as possible increases to their rates of taxation are concerned.
    ----------------------...
    Absolutely. I Support the changed that Obama has outlines in terms of getting rid of targeted tax breaks. No more carried interest. No more tax deductions for flying CEO's to golf courses. No more subsidies for ethanol, etc, etc. I'd like to see an entire tax overhaul that gets the government out of picking winners and losers. Everyone pays something (keep it progressive) - and you spend your money how you see fit and I'll spend mine.

     

    In terms of increasing taxes - I'm ok with that if the money goes directly to paying down the 14 Trillion debt. I'm not in favor of one additional penny given to politicians to spend. They need to CUT 40% of current spending. The triumvirate of politicians, financial elite, and government bureaucrats have systemically stolen from this country for their own benefit - they have captured our government. Only by drastically cutting spending will the politicians and the bureaucrats lose their power, and only by reforming the tax code (and eliminating the very rich lobbying power - both corporations and Wall Street) will the financial elite see themselves playing by the same rules as everyone else. Then we might see a growing middle class again in this country.
    8 Jul 2011, 11:13 AM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    So you are asking for lobbyists to stop working as lobbyists, to their own detriment.

     

    are you delusional ?
    7 Jul 2011, 11:15 PM Reply Like
  • billbrad
    , contributor
    Comments (46) | Send Message
     
    Are you really saying that we don't owe this money to people, who have paid into Social Security their entire lives????? Are you saying they haven't EARNED it??? They certainly have. Many have voted for the idiot politicians who allowed the investment bankers and wall street fat cats to suck $60 trillion out of the world economy in the last few years by voting for the de-regulatory tinkle down free-for all economics of you right wing nutcases. You are delusional. But absolutely consistent with the kind of thinking that will destroy this country.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:58 AM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    If you bothered to do any research, social security gives you no legal right to your "benefits".

     

    I was telling people this 20 years ago and they thought I was nuts. That's when I stopped paying into the system.

     

    Trust no one, especially bankers and politicians.
    8 Jul 2011, 01:06 AM Reply Like
  • Tack
    , contributor
    Comments (13825) | Send Message
     
    fx:

     

    SS was a general-taxation, revenue-raising fraud from the day it was conceived, even before ink hit paper signing it into law. It was only different from FDR's attempt to pack the Supreme Court in that nobody ruled it unconstitutional, unfortunately.
    8 Jul 2011, 03:46 AM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    fx

     

    You are right. If you die on the day you retire the SSA does not send a check to your estate reflecting what you paid in over 40 years of work.

     

    In fact they take your money and say "thank you for playing our game."
    8 Jul 2011, 10:42 AM Reply Like
  • fxmaven
    , contributor
    Comments (1455) | Send Message
     
    If you are married a spouse does receive a benefit (I think), then it's over .
    8 Jul 2011, 10:44 AM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    fx

     

    Correct again. If it was truly owned by the taxpayer they should send the spouse a check for the full amount plus interest which is pathetic since is it invested in UST's.
    8 Jul 2011, 11:54 AM Reply Like
  • davidbdc
    , contributor
    Comments (3174) | Send Message
     
    Are you really saying that we don't owe this money to people, who have paid into Social Security their entire lives????? Are you saying they haven't EARNED it???
    ------

     

    Yes I am saying that. The average social security recipient gets out far more than they paid in assuming any reasonable rate of return. Its a simple mathematical fact.

     

    And lets take it even further. In order to pay these false "entitlements" we've neglected the very things that would boost our economy - our infrastructure. So we send out checks and pay for 91 year olds' medical procedures instead of maintaining our infrastructure. Why? So corrupt politicians can keep getting elected.

     

    We've gone from the "Greatest Generation" to the "Entitled Generation". One generation to another - from the greatest of heights to self destruction of a once great country.

     

    Truth hurts sometimes. And you can call me delusional or anything else. Living within our means come way before some false promise by corrupt politicians. Just like if I promise you 100% returns if you invest with me, you shouldn't be surprised when it doesn't materialize. Entitlements and Public bureaucrats benefits are no different - too good to be true and its long past the time to fix it.
    8 Jul 2011, 12:19 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    90% of a person's medical bills usually are due to procedures done the last 6 month's of their lives. 5% of the population uses 90% of the health-care.
    9 Jul 2011, 06:24 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3333) | Send Message
     
    Hence Obama's Death Panels
    9 Jul 2011, 06:49 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    Ah, I think the insurance companies run those.
    10 Jul 2011, 05:45 PM Reply Like
  • foolesh
    , contributor
    Comments (7) | Send Message
     
    nobody has the gut to default these days.

     

    but one day somebody (creditor) will ask you to do it.

     

    too big to fail now comes to Uncle Sam's turn.

     

    only minions like taxpayer and hard workers must go bankrupt.
    8 Jul 2011, 02:16 AM Reply Like
  • dondon
    , contributor
    Comments (286) | Send Message
     
    The greatest tax on Americans is expensive energy. What made America great for so many decades was inexpensive energy. Jobs are leaving not so much because of lack of skill or cheaper wages but because the cost to run a factory is far less than here in the US. That is because places like China and Mexico subsidize energy. If we could have cheap energy again the jobs would return. Until then the jobs will stay offshore.
    8 Jul 2011, 02:40 AM Reply Like
  • Jessie Livermore
    , contributor
    Comments (17) | Send Message
     
    I'm just throwing this out there, but I don't really think that energy is that expensive. For the most part the only liquid cheaper than gas gallon for gallon is tap water.
    Arguably energy is probably too cheap when in a society people start having two dish washers and a laundry room on more than one floor of their house.
    I do wish that there was a more modern energy policy with a focus on developing energy alternatives. It doesn't mean that we all need to be driving solar cars, but when you think about how the telephone went from a wooden box on the wall to a handheld computer in under 100 years where's the similar innovation when it comes to how we produce energy? I think it just lacks some political will.
    8 Jul 2011, 05:24 AM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Jessie:

     

    Anything is expensive that triples in price and is essential to living. Energy is expensive to any country that consumes approx 28 barrels of oil per captia per year. If you live in India and walk to work not so much.

     

    Innovation in energy is certainly pathetic.
    8 Jul 2011, 10:45 AM Reply Like
  • bigbenorr
    , contributor
    Comments (778) | Send Message
     
    Regarding energy prices in Mexico, it is an oil exporting country. And their government has only hurt the oil industry down there, Pemex is hopelessly incompetent, and production is rapidly dropping.
    8 Jul 2011, 11:02 AM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    Big houses and lots of electronic toys. We have the biggest carbon footprints. Why shouldn't be paying a lot in energy? Are we that special?
    9 Jul 2011, 06:28 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3333) | Send Message
     
    OptionManiac,

     

    It is our god given right as Americans to have unlimited access to cheap affordable energy.

     

    We may have Big Carbon Footprints, but Al Gore's is bigger than most.

     

    You did not know that?
    9 Jul 2011, 06:47 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    Al Gore and Paul Krugman are kissing cousins. Picture that.
    9 Jul 2011, 07:09 PM Reply Like
  • OptionManiac
    , contributor
    Comments (3349) | Send Message
     
    Yeah, well, when someone with a mega-SUV complains about the price of gas, all I can do is shake my head.
    1980XLS - stop being so cynical.
    10 Jul 2011, 05:46 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS
    , contributor
    Comments (3333) | Send Message
     
    I'm speculating that Krugman & Gore may be doing more than just kissing.
    12 Jul 2011, 12:01 AM Reply Like
  • 867046
    , contributor
    Comments (398) | Send Message
     
    "In May, Buffett stated at a Berkshire Hathaway shareholder's meeting that if the Congress failed to raise the debt ceiling, it would constitute "the most asinine act" in the nation's history, reports Reuters."
    8 Jul 2011, 05:53 AM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    867

     

    Warren should send in a check and lower the budget deficit so we don't need to worry about the debt ceiling.

     

    Oooops. I guess he does not have enough money even though he is one of the wealthiest guys in the world. So I wonder where all this money is going to come from? Definitely rich people but also the good old middle class.
    8 Jul 2011, 10:47 AM Reply Like
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