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While the debt talks may be stuck, the sides agree that selling federal property would be a good...

While the debt talks may be stuck, the sides agree that selling federal property would be a good way to raise money, especially as the U.S. owns over 45,000 under-utilized buildings that cost $1.66B/year. However, red tape, the cost of shutting buildings, and and local opposition have blocked such efforts in the past.
Comments (39)
  • nobby73
    , contributor
    Comments (1177) | Send Message
     
    What a terrible time to be selling real estate....
    17 Jul 2011, 08:11 AM Reply Like
  • AxiosCap
    , contributor
    Comments (291) | Send Message
     
    You're worried about the wrong thing. The value of the property is the smallest consideration IMO. The big factor is the ongoing expense associated with these properties. There's no reason what-so-ever that we shouldn't do this (many have been saying this for years anyway).
    17 Jul 2011, 05:38 PM Reply Like
  • pockyclips 2020
    , contributor
    Comments (630) | Send Message
     
    Another case of NIMBY.
    More properly stated; cut federal spending elsewhere.
    Another business subsidy?
    17 Jul 2011, 08:28 AM Reply Like
  • Leftfield
    , contributor
    Comments (3910) | Send Message
     
    There enough useless and counterproductive Federal programs to axe that would end the deficit and grow the economy.
    17 Jul 2011, 08:35 AM Reply Like
  • catamount
    , contributor
    Comments (375) | Send Message
     
    I would be interested in your specific list of these programs that should be cut.
    17 Jul 2011, 11:33 AM Reply Like
  • wkl
    , contributor
    Comments (296) | Send Message
     
    I will comment for Leftfield and hope he agrees with me. How about 10% across the board, military included. All business and individuals had to tighten their belts, time for the idealogues to do the same. I know of no one who beleives that there is not at least 10% of waste and abuse in every federal program.
    17 Jul 2011, 08:11 PM Reply Like
  • apberusdisvet
    , contributor
    Comments (2951) | Send Message
     
    The method to the seeming madness is all too obvious. Sell at the low to cronies or bankster funds, enabled of course by taxpayer financing. Theft by any other name is still theft. We are not amused.
    17 Jul 2011, 09:21 AM Reply Like
  • Tricky
    , contributor
    Comments (1590) | Send Message
     
    This all sounds very.... cute. More tinkering around the edges to make "motion" look like "progress". Social security, Medicare, Medicaid and DoD swamp all other expenditure considerations. Unless something is done to address those, all the rest is political theater.
    17 Jul 2011, 09:30 AM Reply Like
  • Mad_Max_A_Million
    , contributor
    Comments (1175) | Send Message
     
    Tricky, nothing cute about what?

     

    A. SS has over 2 Trillion in assets, robbed by the treasury to pay for other programs. Robbery seems fashionable now a days.

     

    B. Medicare is in some trouble but if altered, you get the Pelosi/Reid corp running commercial ads showing grandma getting thrown over the cliff. Got to love that.

     

    C. Medicaid is an unpaid for give away program that is a bottomless pit. Can't touch that for the same reason as B above.

     

    It's time to throw the big government tax and spend liberals under the bus.
    17 Jul 2011, 12:20 PM Reply Like
  • nobby73
    , contributor
    Comments (1177) | Send Message
     
    How about cuts to healthcare at the same time as a sales tax on junk food? Let's look at this both ways - the crippling medical costs are a combination of a broken system and unhealthy lifestyles....
    17 Jul 2011, 12:49 PM Reply Like
  • Tricky
    , contributor
    Comments (1590) | Send Message
     
    Everybody, including GOP, needs to gore some sacred cows
    17 Jul 2011, 01:50 PM Reply Like
  • GotLife
    , contributor
    Comments (1364) | Send Message
     
    In the world of unintended consequences, taxing junk food doesn't alter their selection or use but makes the government dependent upon the income and stimulates ways to promote the sources of the sin tax. Look at the ever expanding revenue on one major growth industry, gambling. How about gasoline taxes, where producers make two cents a gallon and government makes 66 and consumption continues unabated. Didn't we just bail out the auto industry?

     

    Soon, we will be taxing bordellos and crack houses. Ah, progress. My favorite all time Beatles song is Taxman. "If you take a walk, he'll tax your feet."
    17 Jul 2011, 03:08 PM Reply Like
  • GotLife
    , contributor
    Comments (1364) | Send Message
     
    As a Hindu, I find this remark offensive.
    17 Jul 2011, 03:09 PM Reply Like
  • HiSpeed
    , contributor
    Comments (1177) | Send Message
     
    Selling assets to try and satisfy unsustainable consumption is never a good idea.

     

    Once it's done, you'll still have the liability of the unsustainable consumption, but you'll no longer own the assets thus making a bad situation worse.
    17 Jul 2011, 10:41 AM Reply Like
  • Windsun33
    , contributor
    Comments (4308) | Send Message
     
    Those "assets" are costing millions each year just to maintain. About 2 miles from me is an old federal building that has been sitting empty for over 8 years. It might be time to get rid of those kind of "assets".

     

    They might only amount to one millionth of the debt, but why not get rid of them?
    17 Jul 2011, 11:52 AM Reply Like
  • Marlin Keith DeBramaletta
    , contributor
    Comments (262) | Send Message
     
    The land under it is land. Anything built on top of that land can generate revenue for the landowners, which more than likely is the government. As the WSJ article suggest, creating revenues that are equal or greater than the operating expenses of what is built on the land is the key thing. Whatever revenues can be generated is utiliizing the land underneath.
    17 Jul 2011, 11:08 AM Reply Like
  • enigmaman
    , contributor
    Comments (2686) | Send Message
     
    USC- yes agreed that commercial buildings can generate revenue but is the revenue generated from these government agencies the best use of our tax money, yes for the building owner it wouldn't matter, rent is rent, but to the tax payers it would matter because it would not be the best use of our money. It would be better to sell the assets and then turn the government agency over to private business therefor relieving the tax payers of two burdens the cost to maintain the building and the carry cost of the over paid government worker, nows thats a plan that makes sense
    17 Jul 2011, 11:26 AM Reply Like
  • Marlin Keith DeBramaletta
    , contributor
    Comments (262) | Send Message
     
    I was reading an article from a major publication in which the government debt situation was different from consumer debts immediate repayment. They made an example that their is a long return or pay off for highways and bridges once federal money is placed into those projects. The same situation applies for the land in mention, and maximizing the utilization of projects built on the land while reducing operating expenses or increasing revenues is a key structural component.
    17 Jul 2011, 11:13 AM Reply Like
  • enigmaman
    , contributor
    Comments (2686) | Send Message
     
    Just goes to show you that no matter what the administration wants you to believe they want to sell stuff instead of make cuts in spending, short term solution to long term problem, just another version of "Kick the Can"

     

    Just another lie from Obama when he said "Pull the band-aid off" and "time to eat our peas"
    17 Jul 2011, 11:16 AM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    The real issue here is that it is a distraction from the heart of the matter which are the big government programs like SSA, SSI, and various other acronyms and agencies that need a meat cleaver applied to them. Congressional focus can only deal with so many issues at one time and this is crowding out focus on the big items that make a real difference.

     

    However for people who are not good with math it provides the appearance of serious deliberation which it is not. Good thing paramedics don't work like this when they pick up an accident victim.
    17 Jul 2011, 12:55 PM Reply Like
  • Tricky
    , contributor
    Comments (1590) | Send Message
     
    Yep. It's all theater. GOP nuts want to cut funding for Planned Parenthood, and Obama is screeching about tax breaks on corporate planes -- totally insignificant sums compared to sacred cows like the Iraq War and restructuring Social Security to recognize that our expected lifespan is way longer than when the system was first constructed. But hey, it makes the lunatic fringes feel better, and primaries are coming up, so there you go.
    17 Jul 2011, 01:58 PM Reply Like
  • GotLife
    , contributor
    Comments (1364) | Send Message
     
    The difference is, however, that Planned Parenthood snuffs out about 600,000 lives, mostly minorities, a year. Well, I guess they are both industries. Even if you are pro abortion, is it a Federal government necessity to fund? Couldn't the choices made be funded exclusively by those desiring the operation or those supporting their right to terminate?
    17 Jul 2011, 03:15 PM Reply Like
  • Tricky
    , contributor
    Comments (1590) | Send Message
     
    The feds don't fund abortion, despite your attempts to paint it as such. And Planned Parenthood is the go-to resources of medical care for a large number of poor women, which is the dominant activity for that organization. But thanks for the propaganda. I guess you are part of the target audience for such pandering.
    17 Jul 2011, 03:39 PM Reply Like
  • GotLife
    , contributor
    Comments (1364) | Send Message
     
    Be glad to see your data on how they isolate and account for these activities rather than just blindly accepting just PP spin and propaganda. I would love to get past talking points and deal with facts. Exactly what kind of medical care and volumes does PP provide to poor minorities beyond terminating lives? Sonograms? Well mother, baby? Mammograms? Adoptions?

     

    I do know that their pregnancy prevention activities are minute compared to the money making abortion business. Rather than personal attacks, how about facts. I'm willing to listen and discuss. Glad to be corrected by facts.
    17 Jul 2011, 09:37 PM Reply Like
  • Tricky
    , contributor
    Comments (1590) | Send Message
     
    I don't have any dog in the fight re: PP. I just enjoy picking at untruths propogated by ideologues (which are prevalent ALL across the political spectrum, to be sure).

     

    This isn't the thread for an extended discussion on this topic, so I'll just make a few overall points and I'm done with it.

     

    First, to take on the favorite line of attack (all fuds are fungible) EVERY public sector entity, EVERY academic institution and nearly any not-for-profit of large size gets funding from sources for which the uses are restricted to or against certain activities and they have a lot of experience in managing around this. PP is under particular scrutiny from its enemies and so must take extra special care in not using federal funds for abortion services. If you are accusing them of breaking those rules, it is incumbent upon YOU to prove it, not me to prove they aren't. So far, no one has ever proven so that I have ever heard of.

     

    Second, it is really easy to check out their site or do a tiny amount of googling to see what their services are and what kinds of volumes they serve. The most striking thing (to me) I ever heard of is how often PP is the first gynecological (basic hygiene stuff) service the patient has encountered, and how often PP is the ONLY such source ever used.
    17 Jul 2011, 10:17 PM Reply Like
  • GotLife
    , contributor
    Comments (1364) | Send Message
     
    Ironic and just as I thought. No data. Just more empty ideology and opinion. You might be more careful in how you refer to others in the future.
    18 Jul 2011, 08:03 AM Reply Like
  • Tricky
    , contributor
    Comments (1590) | Send Message
     
    Well, there wouldn't be any data on a non-existent behavior (improper use of federal funds). Or can I accuse you of engaging in, say, embezzlement and put the onus on you to provide data of that non-existent behavior?

     

    You don't seem to know what the word "ironic" means. Here's a proper use of the word -- it is "ironic" that you are complaining about ideology and lack of data when it's the basis of your attacks on PP, you don't have any data that they are using federal funds to conduct abortions and the basis of your attacks is purely ideological.
    18 Jul 2011, 08:08 AM Reply Like
  • Tricky
    , contributor
    Comments (1590) | Send Message
     
    In the American system of justice, there is a presumption of innocence unless guilt is proven. Given that PP has been under attack for decades, and its enemies have not provided any data to show that PP is improperly using federal funds to perform abortions -- even during the evangelical Bush years, when they had a golden chance to unleash multiple auditing committees on it -- that pretty much tells me all I need to know.

     

    The "ironic" thing about this debate is I am by no means "pro abortion". I am merely discussing the available "data" about the legalities. And anyhoo, it's a drop in the bucket within the debate about the debt and deficit situations.
    18 Jul 2011, 08:28 AM Reply Like
  • warrenrial
    , contributor
    Comments (561) | Send Message
     
    Depends on who is involved in the selling of such property.
    17 Jul 2011, 01:27 PM Reply Like
  • Windsun33
    , contributor
    Comments (4308) | Send Message
     
    "Depends on who is involved in the selling of such property."

     

    I cannot think of a single good reason why the stuff under, say $250K, could not just be stuck on eBay. In fact why not just have the government sell all of it's surplus property that way, everything from old B-52's to obsolete vacuum tubes.
    17 Jul 2011, 07:09 PM Reply Like
  • The Geoffster
    , contributor
    Comments (4131) | Send Message
     
    What's the big deal? Since when has the White House not been for sale?
    17 Jul 2011, 03:13 PM Reply Like
  • rjj1960
    , contributor
    Comments (1370) | Send Message
     
    First, the president should call caterpillar tractor up and order 100 of the largest bulldozers they make. Next, line them up blade to blade and bulldoze Detroit and Flint Michigan right into Lake Michigan. Then when its leveled, sell it to the Chinese. Let them build factories and employ all the people collecting a govt check that sit on there backsides doing nothing, ( most of congress also). Lets start there and see how that goes. What a mess, our forefathers must be spinning in their graves.
    17 Jul 2011, 03:36 PM Reply Like
  • Rob Viglione
    , contributor
    Comments (331) | Send Message
     
    These jack@$$es need to learn to live within a budget. Selling assets will only last so long...
    17 Jul 2011, 03:39 PM Reply Like
  • warrenrial
    , contributor
    Comments (561) | Send Message
     
    When you sell the "assests" you no longer need to suport them. Thus you have a savings.
    17 Jul 2011, 04:08 PM Reply Like
  • The Patriot
    , contributor
    Comments (327) | Send Message
     
    A few years ago, the Chattahoochee National Forest in NE Georgia, attempted to sell a few outlier properties. Several hundred acres - no huge amount. The forest service wanted to sell this land as it was costing money to maintain it.
    Buyers were lined up, but after the greenies found out, every road block imaginable was put up to stop the sell. After 2-3 years it was decided that legal fees would amount to more than the land would bring and the land was taken off the market.
    17 Jul 2011, 04:43 PM Reply Like
  • Windsun33
    , contributor
    Comments (4308) | Send Message
     
    Patriot, I have seen the same kind of crap here in AZ. In one case a simple 28 foot right of way for an access road that is less than 400 feet long was tied up in court for 3 weeks.

     

    The Pseudo Greenies spend time and money on this kind of crap, while having no problems with the thousands of acres in national parks and forests polluted by pot growers and meth labs.
    17 Jul 2011, 07:13 PM Reply Like
  • Marlin Keith DeBramaletta
    , contributor
    Comments (262) | Send Message
     
    projectonstudentdebt.o...
    17 Jul 2011, 04:54 PM Reply Like
  • TomasViewPoint
    , contributor
    Comments (4845) | Send Message
     
    By the way if they don't sell this real estate free and clear then it will drive down the price or prevent any sales at all. My take is that they will probably try to put all kinds of conditions on the sales if they do anything or direct it to certain people. Corruption and meddling.
    17 Jul 2011, 05:17 PM Reply Like
  • Windsun33
    , contributor
    Comments (4308) | Send Message
     
    Just sell the crap. If the NIMBY's have a problem with it, let them buy it and do what they want with it.
    17 Jul 2011, 07:15 PM Reply Like
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