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Democrats and Republicans reportedly reach a tentative agreement on the framework of a deal that...

Democrats and Republicans reportedly reach a tentative agreement on the framework of a deal that would increase the debt ceiling by up to $2.4T and guarantee an equal amount of deficit reduction over the next 10 years.
Comments (139)
  • A few billion in immediate cuts and any "significant" ones backloaded to be potentially overturned by future Congresses or Presidents. It would be laughable if the joke wasn't really on all of us.
    31 Jul 2011, 08:52 AM Reply Like
  • I agree


    This is not what Americans were expecting....Where is the courage to put a lid on spending today. Strong leadership seems absent.


    31 Jul 2011, 08:55 AM Reply Like
  • I agree. The lack of courage to take strong action is everywhere. Business leaders are hoarding cash instead of hiring. Government leaders are stuck in an endless cycle of dysfunction.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:36 AM Reply Like
  • I don't think most Americans think about it in these terms. Most Americans want their entitlements like Social Security and Medicare guaranteed. They likely don't care about or understand the deficit or the national debt (what percentage of Americans do you believe understand the concept of 'trillion'?).


    Strong leadership is absent, mostly because an educated electorate is also absent.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:27 AM Reply Like
  • Agreed, sadly! I'd add apathetic to the electorate as well. It is so complex and all of the posturing and spinning further confuses us. I am well-educated and do not claim to understand it all. Is that even possible?
    31 Jul 2011, 01:04 PM Reply Like
  • you hint on the framework: an epic battle of old people (want same or more entitlements) vs. young people (want less future taxes, cuts). too bad for the deficit there is a huge boomer group and far fewer young.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:17 PM Reply Like
  • Entitlement...


    I love that word.


    If you pay $390 for a share of Apple stock, would you not be ENTITLED to it?


    If you paid into social security for the last 20, 30, 40+ years, not to mention what your employer matched, would you not be ENTITLED to the benefits of it?


    Of course, some disingenuous commenter will bring out the argument that grandma or grandpa paid in $5000 to SS, but received $90000 back, and that is why it is running out of money.


    On the surface, that appears to be something even Captain Obvious could figure out.


    However, how much was that $5000 adjusted for inflation, and did it not have the benefit of compounding interest?


    If the ENTITLEMENTS are to stop flowing, then why in the **** are we paying FICA and other taxes then?
    31 Jul 2011, 02:10 PM Reply Like
  • Agree with you but that's why in 1935 they changed it from a 'retirement contribution' to a tax. It is technically no longer 'an entitlement'. That have scrubbed the chalkboard.


    Now, its merely a transfer payment. And if you are under age 50, it is definitely a transfer payment now. You can kiss any of it you paid in goodbye.


    Thank FDR.


    Go ahead. The cheery fella was real smart.
    31 Jul 2011, 02:20 PM Reply Like
  • Please show us the math!


    You'll find that the simple fact that people live longer is what threatens Social Security, plus the explosion in people using disability as an early retirement plan.


    Medicare is a bit more complicated. Again the biggest driver is the age at which people live compared to when they used to die (a good thing overall). But also, medicine has become much much more expensive - especially in areas that did not exist when Medicare was formed.


    Notice your share of Apple stock entitles you to one shareholder vote. It doesn't entitle you to a guaranteed stock price nor dividend level. Just like SS and Medicare benefits.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:07 PM Reply Like
  • david


    Any numbers on the explosion of people living on SSA through disability. I know of some of them and they are in their 30's and 40's!!!!!
    1 Aug 2011, 12:27 AM Reply Like
  • I saw something in the WSJ a month or so ago and couldn't believe the numbers and the percentage increase - especially when compared to 30 years ago when more people did manual labor.


    If I can find some time later this week I'll try to dig up the government statistics. IMO, disability should be "my back was crushed by a big piece of machinery and I can barely walk anymore". I'll pay taxes for that guy. What makes my blood boil are the 44 year old women I see jumping out of SUV's (of course parking in the handicapped parking spaces). Its become a scam and the fact that you have pain from time to time is not a disibility.
    1 Aug 2011, 02:46 PM Reply Like
  • davidbdc, " Its become a scam and the fact that you have pain from time to time is not a disability."


    Nope its Democratic money laundering. Take from the middle class and pay the socialist voters. Nothing more.
    1 Aug 2011, 06:58 PM Reply Like
  • Balanced Budget Amendment,,,what Rand Paul doesn't want to tell
    Kentucky how big the cuts will be to the Bluegrass state???
    31 Jul 2011, 09:05 AM Reply Like
  • "Mr. Obama denounced the $2.3 trillion added to the national debt on Mr. Bush's watch as "deficits as far as the eye can see." But Mr. Obama's budget adds $9.3 trillion to the debt over the next 10 years. What happened to Obama the deficit hawk?HYPOCRISY.
    31 Jul 2011, 10:56 AM Reply Like
    31 Jul 2011, 01:44 PM Reply Like
  • What I love is that when you look at the federal taxes raised in state minus federal spending in state from 1990 to 2009


    Red - Kentucky is firmly in the worst 4. Kentucky's debt since 1990 is at over 130% of GDP. These numbers make Greece look like a sober Scrooge.


    The Top 3 Creditor states? All Blue. Delaware, Illinois and New York. #4 is Ohio. All of these states have transferred to the rest of the Union. They are the Germany's of the US


    Hypocrisy. Mr. Paul. Give back the money.


    31 Jul 2011, 03:12 PM Reply Like
  • Econdoc, how dare you counter Tea Party rhetoric with facts? Obviously, you hate America and are nothing more than a tax and spend terrorist.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:23 PM Reply Like
  • It makes sense and I wouldn't call it hypocrisy either. There are a lot more farm subsidies for the cornfed breadbasket states which produce our food. In addition when we look at the per capita federal distribution per state, the ones with smaller populations have more representation in the Senate also on a per capita basis.


    But this is the real key:


    Its like this, as a business owner, I have 10 stores. Some are smaller than others. The small ones all have higher costs in proportion to their sales than the larger stores. Why? Because they aren't as efficient by the nature of their size. The rents are fixed costs as well as the payroll and advertising budgets. Its not just size of store either. Its location. Stores in less populated areas have the same fixed costs as stores in more highly populated areas with better foot traffic.


    So in essence my cost basis is the same, but my sales are not, making the larger stores in denser bluer urban areas with better foot traffic a better deal when costs are compared with the other stores across the chain.


    What's worse, if sales get slow, I can reduce payroll much more at the bigger, higher traffic stores, but I can't reduce it at my smaller stores. Why? Because you need a certain amount of payroll always just to turn on the lights, period. Also, the ad budget remains static no matter what.


    Larger stores give me more room to play the variables during a downturn.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:44 PM Reply Like
  • Wyatt, no one cares what you have to say.
    1 Aug 2011, 02:27 AM Reply Like
  • The Framework is to pull the wool over our eyes and then claim victory for their amazing cooperative skillz in government and to promote the idea that they know what's best for everyone.


    I prefer the Framework of the Gallows for these politicians - but that's just my opinion and I don't expect anyone to share it.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:05 AM Reply Like
  • BS, more BS, and still more Bull S--t
    31 Jul 2011, 09:17 AM Reply Like
  • So, the pantomime plays out exactly as expected: bickering until one minute to midnight and then agree a big increase with the vague promise of back end cuts. Of course, all groups will claim a moral victory, and that they stayed true to their principles.


    The reality is, we are as far away as ever from bringing deficits under control and the economy is far away from a self-sustaining path.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:23 AM Reply Like
  • Every Republican that votes for this should be voted out of office at the next election. Period, its time for the spending to stop.


    I hope the Republicans realize the Democrats has set them up and they were no smart enough to see it coming.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:24 AM Reply Like
  • Tea Party will be slammed in 2012. The people - the other 80% - are fed up with stupidity.


    31 Jul 2011, 10:28 AM Reply Like
  • They had him by the short and curlies, and then they let go.


    Any agreement to raise the debt limit has to be small enough so we need to go through this again in the next 12 months, or the Reps have lost all leverage.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:33 AM Reply Like
  • Its a start. This agreement mandates any debt ceiling hikes be offset by equal spending cuts, this will definitely help slow the growth rate of our debt. Much more cutting will be required to not only slow the rate of debt growth but to actually reduce the debt. However now is not the time, the economy is sliding into reverse, future real cuts need to be held off until the economy gets on surer footing. But its a start, clearly much more will need to be done which will require a more equal weighting of power in the Senate and first and foremost a different President. All that being said, it wont change the fact that the rating agencies have said they want to see a serious debt reduction plan. From what I see in this plan and what the rating agencies said they are looking, this deal would not meet their criteria. So me thinks a downgrade is now baked into the cake.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:45 AM Reply Like
  • So they will cut $2.4 Trillion from the deficit over 10 yrs? That's $240 Billion a year. We run a $1.2 Trillion deficit a year - $240 Billion = $960 Billion deficit a year. Thus in 10 yrs the debt will increase by $9.6 Trillion assuming that new up coming spending such as healthcare based on a 3.5% GDP doesn't end up adding to the cost. Because those government spending plans always run on budget…right?
    In 10 yrs US debt will be ~$23 Trillion….. yea that looks great.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:46 AM Reply Like
  • In case there is too much groupthink here...23% of registered voters
    favor the Tea Party...
    31 Jul 2011, 09:47 AM Reply Like
  • Because the Ds and Rs have done such a bang up job so far? That is part of the deal of a free country, supposedly you can favor who you wish.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:52 AM Reply Like
  • The Tea Party is made up of unsophisticated children that would cry like a calf in a hailstorm if they actually had to live in a world they clamor for. They just do not understand governance, society and the functions of each.


    Granted the Rs and Ds have been utterly woeful, but throwing the baby out with the Tea Party bath water is not the way to go. A third way based on reason, intellect and planning rather than emotion and ignorance is needed.
    31 Jul 2011, 10:08 AM Reply Like
  • they will be crushed in 2012 and go away.


    here's the issue - real reform comes from the middle to the extent that zealots hijack the debate it hardens positions on all sides and makes even the reasonable seem impossible.


    31 Jul 2011, 10:20 AM Reply Like
  • Amen...
    31 Jul 2011, 10:27 AM Reply Like
  • I regret that I have only one thumbs up to give. Hopefully the Tea party will be ran out of town and I'll get my Republican party back. I equate the Teabaggers stance to The Goose That Laid the Golden Egg. In their zeal for massive immediate debt reduction they are proposing a course that will destroy the goose that has the ability to deliver even greater reductions than they want; but, over a longer time frame.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:16 AM Reply Like
  • Bear:


    Draconian measures or not, the only "goose" that's been fattened up for the past several administrations is the Government. And, the eggs it's been laying have been "goose eggs" for the private sector. They haven't been very tasty.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:20 AM Reply Like
  • It's too bad what has happened to the Tea Party. I am DEFINITELY in favor of having a "contingent" that works for fiscal sanity and to shrink down the size of government. Our country badly needs that.


    Very unfortunately, the TP movment got co-opted by opportunistic, telegenic FOOLS (I just can't take you seriously if Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachman are amongst your foremost spokespersons) and an unproductive tone of hysterical shrieking.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:45 AM Reply Like
  • So the tea party will be run out of town and replaced by what exactly?


    More liberal democrats and republicans?


    All these comments are correct, IF your only thinking about this generation. Yes, we can borrow for the next several years and pass money around. But our children and grandchildren will be the ones crying like calfs in a hailstorm!


    Personally I think its totally gutless for this generation to knowingly lessen the future of the next several generations. We had the greatest generation and now have the "entitled" generation..... soon to be followed by the "Declining" generation..... and soon thereafter perhaps the "Indentured servant" generation.


    Our country has been taken over by the triumvirate of the financial elite, bureaucrats, and politicians. Only those three groups are prospering as the government takes over. We no longer have anything close to capitalism. We no longer have an education system focused on the needs of children. We have a group of "elites" and they have bought off enough people to seemingly rule forever.


    It won't end well with the current course we are on.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:48 AM Reply Like
  • "A third way based on reason, intellect and planning rather than emotion and ignorance is needed."


    You mean the Tea Party.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:18 PM Reply Like
  • Wrong. Compromise is what got us here at these so-called 'cuts'.


    We need zealots. We need a Rand Paul or Marco Rubio.


    The middle is killing us. The middle is what this deal today just created.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:19 PM Reply Like
  • You'll get your Republicans back??? HAHAHAHA!


    They were the problem the entire time!
    31 Jul 2011, 01:21 PM Reply Like
  • The Tea Party was the only faction talking up fiscal responsibility. The only one.


    If you want them gone what you are saying is you want more Obama/Boehner.


    You are establishmentarians.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:23 PM Reply Like
  • Oh, good Lord, Wyatt. You honestly think the likes of Bachman and Palin are the answer? My 4 year old can reason through a situation with more aplomb and objectivity.
    31 Jul 2011, 02:57 PM Reply Like
  • And any 4 year old should be able to see through the kind of bullshit we hear in Washington. Even yours.


    Listen, this isn't difficult. I don't care if you don't like Bachman or think Palin's voice is screechy, which it is. Its not about artificial stupid crap like that.


    The question is, do you want more expansive government or less? Yes or no. Do you want higher taxes? Yes or no. Do you want more government intrusion, higher regulations, bigger govt. payrolls and higher deficits? Yes or no.


    Call it what you will, Tea Party or the Teat Party on the other side of the aisle, what do you want?


    Pick a side.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:03 PM Reply Like
  • I want a government that is an advocate for business/growth. Spending definitely needs to be curtailed. However, there are smart ways to go about it. The Tea Party represents many things, but "smart" is not one of them. They are reactionary, emotional, ignorant and as easily duped by the same establishment you despise as a Kansas farm-boy in NYC with $100 bills hanging out of his shirt pocket.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:28 PM Reply Like
  • Nope. You are wrong. It is the middle that drives lasting change.


    Not the extreme fringes. Elections have consequences.


    Obama was a mistake. The Fife and Drum actors are a disaster.


    The worst of it is that they both had opportunities to actually make a difference show some leadership. Instead we got ideological purity - for what gain? We got Obamacare and a Debt Ceiling mess. Both are different sides of the same coin.


    Leadership is not standing at a podium and droning on about millionaires and billionaires. Nor is it pandering to the 20% of the elecorate who supports you and wants Armageddon


    In 2012 they will all be swept away.


    Reagan Democrats
    Clinton Republicans


    Where are the Bachmann Democrats? The Palin Democrats? Are there any Tea Party Democrats? Are there any Obama Republicans? There may have been but not any more.


    The hallmark of leadership is followers. Not worshippers. Not like minded robots - babbling slogans and protecting sacred cows at all costs.


    Leadership is making sure that people have bought in and understand the chosen path that while not perfect actually leads somewhere. Leadership is about movement with a unified purposes. Where is the unity? All you have at the moment are competing voices shouting at cross purposes. A fractured purpose.


    No increased tax revenues over my dead body? Not even if it leads to reform of the mess of the Tax system?


    No entitlment reform? No changes whatsoever under any circumstances even if it guarantees the saftey net for people who need it?


    No cutting Defense spending under any circumstances - it cannot even be on the table?


    This is leadership?


    Cutting off your nose to spite your face is not leadership.




    Like it or not. We live in a Transfer Union.


    You heroes. Rand Paul and Marco Rubio are from debtor states. Both Kentucky and Florida have been running major deficits these past 20 years.


    Both of these fine fellows need to focus their effort on cutting the cash that flows into their districts - first. They need to be finding ways to raise revenue in their districts - first.


    Rubio, Paul, the rest of the fife and drum play actors are hypocritic zealots. They are the problem. The people are awake now. The end is at hand.


    Anyone but Obama 2012 (except Bachmann, Palin, Gingrich, Santorum, Roemer, Paul, and any other Tea Party affiliated fool)


    And. Vote against Tea. Throw the garbage out.


    31 Jul 2011, 03:39 PM Reply Like
  • If you want growth, indeed, public spending will have to be curtailed. Capital investment shirks back from larger, more meddlesome governments because it always translates into monetary intrusion at some point either through higher taxes or currency dilution. There is no other way. It is the law of economics.


    As far as your characterizations, I find them reactionary, emotional and ignorant but that is beside the point.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:50 PM Reply Like
  • The point I am trying to make is, that I believe nearly everyone on this site wants a government that supports business and growth. Where the twain seems to not be meeting is the wisdom of hitching those hopes to the Tea Party wagon. I think you understand my feelings on the matter.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:58 PM Reply Like


    Some Tea partiers are not so fiscally honest...
    31 Jul 2011, 04:01 PM Reply Like
  • "Nope. You are wrong. It is the middle that drives lasting change."


    Nope. You are wrong. It is the middle that got us this debt deal.


    Congrats to that. Yay to the middle! LOL.


    The rest of your post, besides agreeing about Zerocare, we can chalk up to naive irrelevance.
    31 Jul 2011, 04:35 PM Reply Like
  • I agree. Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, General Dynamics & URS should all go overseas and conduct business, say in China. Not here in the welfare states of America. Right? Maybe Boeing too, eh?


    heh heh
    31 Jul 2011, 04:39 PM Reply Like
  • Econdoc and Wyatt are both wrong. The middle did not get us anything except McCain/Lieberman (and other disasters waiting to happen). Its like designing something by committee. It never works out. Extreme polarization never got us anything meaningful either.


    What we need is leadership; that is a completely different concept. It means sticking to extremes on things that matter and compromising on things that don't. Economic strength, full employment, right to bear arms, and freedom to choose all matter and should never be compromised.


    The problem with Democrats is that they focus on things that don't matter and actually hurt America and ignore what really matters. They have strong leadership (they get people to vote for smoke and mirrors) but that leadership really only cares about greed, power, and personal consumption.


    The problem with Republicans is that they cannot compromise on things that don't matter. So while they pretend to focus on things that matter, they continue to be ineffective because they cannot organize around a strong message and educate people why their ideas are important. There is no Republican leadership.
    31 Jul 2011, 05:29 PM Reply Like
  • "What we need is leadership; that is a completely different concept. It means sticking to extremes on things that matter and compromising on things that don't. Economic strength, full employment, right to bear arms, and freedom to choose all matter and should never be compromised."


    Neal, you're being extreme in your views.


    That was easy. Now we're back to square one.


    31 Jul 2011, 05:38 PM Reply Like
  • Well done Econdoc, you explained it perfectly.


    And yes, I am making it my mission in 2012 to vote against the Tea Party, and I know alot of people are doing the same.
    31 Jul 2011, 06:37 PM Reply Like
  • buk


    That was 4 insults against the TP in one comment including one calling the TPs emotional.


    Me thinks you are a bit emotional.
    1 Aug 2011, 12:30 AM Reply Like
  • Bring on the downgrades............... or no TP they are coming.
    1 Aug 2011, 12:33 AM Reply Like
  • Only $2.4 trillion? If I recall correctly, the country faces a rating downgrade unless it's at least $4 trillion.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:50 AM Reply Like
  • I think everyone is jumping the gun...let's see what is in the agreement. Regardless of party differences, I think both sides realize that a plan to cut the budget decisively so that we get balance in a few years is needed to prevent credit downgrade. Lets withhold judgement.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:11 PM Reply Like
  • Even Obama was on board with $4 tril until Pelosi showed up shrieking.


    Then it all went to a runny pile.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:24 PM Reply Like
  • Topcat, "I think both sides realize that a plan to cut the budget decisively so that we get balance in a few years is needed to prevent credit downgrade."


    There has not been any party or government official that has proposed any amount of budget reduction. Period. There will be no reducing the deficit with this crowd in office; Republican's and Democrats alike. Now they may be able to raise taxes (because the media will tell the middle class its only the rich getting soaked.)


    But that will kill the economy because right now taxes are going up on everyone including the poor (which the media ignores in order to support Obama). I think we have assured America a downgrade, unless the Administration steps in and threatens the ratings agencies. I expect we'll see EU ratings agencies downgrade America before ours.
    31 Jul 2011, 02:59 PM Reply Like
  • Pelosi is certainly comparable to Palin in regards to shrill extremism. Although Pelosi isn't nearly as headshakingly stupid as Palin.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:00 PM Reply Like
  • Funny thing is Obama said it would be okay if he was a one termer last year. Now, he's forgotten all that and has been in 365/24/7 campaign lockdown mode spouting Pelosi cliches like a hysterical street preacher.


    Its funny how great leadership works. I believe Obama would have gotten reelected if he had put Pelosi in her place and sacrificed himself and his own left wing nut circus and pivoted like Clinton did in '94. Ironically it would have helped his party too. But now, because he's not as imaginative as that, he has ensured his own party's destruction along with our credit rating.


    If he had come out and told Pelosi and Reid to STFU, and went along with a min. $4 trillion up front cut, the freaks in his own party along with the Huffpo crowd would have had a crap fit, but his overall popularity would have soared.


    The Child has piss poor advisors.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:09 PM Reply Like
  • buk


    OK let's look at the evidence with respect to stupid.


    Pelosi has helped put our country close to bankruptcy and is a high maintenance witch.


    Palin has made a lot of money just lobbing grenades into the ossified two party system and actually made the State of Alaska reasonably strong financially when governor.


    I guess we have to redefine stupid.
    1 Aug 2011, 12:38 AM Reply Like
  • I'd be surprised if the rating agencies would let this pass without consequence...


    2.4T increase (totally going to happen) for a committed 1.2T in cuts over 10 years (backloaded of course but proposed and could indeed happen) and some vagueries about a commission deciding on another 1.6T (never going to happen)


    S&P wanted to see 4T over 10 years and that was only a 'good start'...


    Markets will ignore a downgrade (if that even happens) and be jubilant starting tomorrow, 1.2T to enter the house, an 8.39% increase over the current limit, which should get us to 1400 on the SPX with a little huffing and puffing. Place your bets!
    31 Jul 2011, 09:54 AM Reply Like
  • Remember folks inside the dismal GDP numbers...exports set an
    all time high in absolute numbers and % of GDP....
    31 Jul 2011, 10:09 AM Reply Like
  • People are already jumping in joy that a deal has been confirmed.....


    What about the house republicans? Obama could have convinced Mitch, but it would be very hard to sell this gimmick cuts to the house republicans...


    I hope for the future of our country that House Republicans don't cave in and
    push for 6T in cuts and a balanced budget amendment.
    31 Jul 2011, 10:22 AM Reply Like
  • I got a better idea.


    House Republicans should leave town and just not vote. That would be better. No risk then of any going over to the dark side.


    6T? Is that all - why not 12T. And for the kicker. One of Obama's children should be given over as hostage to Michelle Bachmann - for future cuts.


    31 Jul 2011, 11:15 AM Reply Like
  • Now that would be cruel and unusual punishment. I can't imagine worse :)
    31 Jul 2011, 01:12 PM Reply Like
  • A Krugman cheerleader I see.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:26 PM Reply Like
  • Nobody cares about exports or even the good employment numbers last week. Everyone wants to be miserable. Let them. More for us.


    31 Jul 2011, 10:26 AM Reply Like
  • A half-measure.


    I think it plays into Obama's strategy to capture independents in 2012:


    * He looks non-ideological and grown up for having pushed the "Grand Bargain"


    * Any future SS/Medicare and defense cuts will either come from the committee, or will be automatic, providing Obama political cover


    * Bush tax cuts still expire next year
    31 Jul 2011, 10:28 AM Reply Like
  • IMO both houses knew that a downgrade could be reality no matter what they did, but they also knew the poor state of our economy as confirmed by the latest very bad GDP numbers. So I assume both houses felt that it was be better to chance getting a downgrade with less severe cuts rather then hope not to get a downgrade while killing off our anemic economy with much more severe cuts. Im no fan of DC politicians but we are in unchartered territory here, considering how poorly DC did when in the past the dots where there to connect I have even less faith that they can predict where the future dots will be going forward, let alone connect them. Better for Republicans to live and fight another day, rather then fight to the death now, losing not only the battle but also the entire war.
    31 Jul 2011, 10:32 AM Reply Like
  • enigma:


    The only thing is that one of the principal reasons the economy is lethargic is because of DC's actions, monopolizing capital, adding regulations, threatening higher taxation and generally providing an environment of uncertainty and anti-business bias. The idea that if we "underfund" Government, we'll get a retreating economy, is not supported by the recent history we see before us, now.


    The usual big spenders have raised every scare tactic imaginable to suggest that a functioning economy can't exist without ever-growing tribute to our Government "nanny," but, if that money were, instead, directed toward the private sector with tax cuts and investment tax credits, we'd see a much faster-growing private sector, which ultimately would benefit Government, too, with expanded tax collections from a much larger tax base.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:01 AM Reply Like
  • Hi gents, I agree with much of what both of you have said. The ideal for our national well being would be a combination of a PRODUCTIVE TARGETED short term stimulus with a medium term CREDIBLE REAL deficit reduction once recovery got underway.


    Unfortunately, our politicians are not capable of either.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:35 AM Reply Like
  • The problem is that to win the war you have to start winning some battles!


    This measure is a drop in the bucket. I'd bet my own money the commission will meet and pass a bunch of half-measures that do nothing.


    I don't understand why people can't realize that all the time we're borrowing more money we are just making the inevitable pain that much worse. Yes, governments can borrow money - and as long as their economy grows more than they borrow then can usually sustain that trajectory. The problem is that our trajectory is so far north of any possible growth numbers it isn't funny.


    The simple truth is that as a nation our REAL standard of living is about 5-8% less than what people have gotten used to. The last 5-8% has all been borrowed every year! And its adding up!! Better to cut back now and live less well now.... than to reach a tipping point and seeing society come apart. Its called living within your means! And yes, it means that seniors will feel cuts. It means the military will feel cuts. It means government agencies will be boarded up. It means public employees will feel cuts. It means the tax code gets totally wiped clean and no deductions for anyone.


    It means returning government to its proper role in society.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:56 AM Reply Like
  • The issue is Govt spending has been used to support TBTF across the board.


    What is needed is reduced Govt spending, reduced taxes, and a real recession where failing businesses and institutions actually go out of business, so capital can flow to productive sectors. Real Creative Destruction, QE is a worthless failure unless you are a TBTF or an investor in CMG and other stocks of that ilk.


    The hydra headed crony capitalist state however will not allow this, so when the real recession hits, the crisis will be even worse, with the huge debt overhang. I've heard forecasts of 25 trillion in debt by the end of Obama's second term. Just delaying the inevitable, yet I'm a patient man.


    So short gold in the short term, i'll cover my profitable short positions, cover my short puts and establish new shorts on equities at or around S&P1340. The bearish head and shoulders is in.
    31 Jul 2011, 12:35 PM Reply Like
  • Tack- The current administration is pro big government, pro tax as well as anti business and then add to Obama, the Dem Senate majority and the agile Dem in the house of Rep. and you cant deny its controls most of the marbles. The opposite of what you and I agree is needed for a dynamic growing economy. To initiate the kinds of changes needed, come Nov 2012 the Rep would have to keep control of the House, gain control of the Senate or at least have parity and it would help to also have the WH. Only then will we have any chance for the kind of legislation needed to turn the economy away from its current path. The Tea Party is the only reason the Rep have come as far as they have. All Im saying is the Rep. will now have up to Nov 2012 to make its case to the public, done right they could sweep all three houses. I am in no way shape or form condoning current government spending or seeking it to continue in its current form. But until the required pro growth steps have been put into motion or are not in question, cutting to much to fast would be very dangerous because business would still be uncertain about the future, the same as they are right now. We could find our economy baked in the squat and no place to go.
    31 Jul 2011, 12:44 PM Reply Like
  • Unfortunately, we can't vote for you Tack. And even if we could, the comments here suggest you wouldn't win.


    We'll just have to suffer with high unemployment, demand-side JMK stimulus & our Japan-like coma. Welcome to DOW 3500 in 2026 in the year of our Lord.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:28 PM Reply Like
  • Tack,
    For the most part, I agree with your assessment. However, and I don't mean to put words in your mouth, this Tea Party business will not provide a fertile environment for business/growth. They remind me of a bunch of born-again Caligulas with a Bible in one and a copy of the Constitution folded up and stowed in their shoe for safe keeping.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:06 PM Reply Like
  • The caricaturing of the Tea Party is an intended misdirection by the currently entrenched to take the focus of the real issues at hand, that our current course of Government "of Itself, by Itself and for Itself" is incompatible with the preservation of our personal freedom and economic prosperity. It's no different than the other repetitious message, repeated for decades by the liberals, to discredit the sensible dialogue by discrediting the messenger, i.e., "Christian Right," as if by blathering those words alone it renders the discussion value of their message null and void.


    Personally, I don't get fazed by labels, and I don't align myself with any activist groups, but I do get fazed by having my freedom and money appropriated by others for their own self-righteous ideas about what's "fair."
    31 Jul 2011, 05:34 PM Reply Like
  • It wasn't misdirection by the entrenched Tack, it was an organic reaction by the guy on the streets who saw the madness and didn't like what was going on.
    31 Jul 2011, 07:22 PM Reply Like
  • I hope the TPs blow apart the 2 party system. Don't necessarily agree with them on everything but they are not the problem. The Dems and Reps are the problem.
    1 Aug 2011, 12:39 AM Reply Like
  • It's all just Political Theater and positioning. The cuts seem nice, but its just drilling a hole in a sinking boat to let the water out.


    The Balanced Budget Amendment will not and should not pass. It's ridiculous economic policy. But, alas, it makes great "sound bites" to play to the ignorant masses.


    The TP and R's know this, they are just looking for campaign fodder.


    What a waste of time, but that's what Congress seems to do best.


    As for any meaningful reform, I can pray, but I won't hold my breadth.
    31 Jul 2011, 10:51 AM Reply Like
  • Reel- what meaningful reform could you get behind and support?
    31 Jul 2011, 11:09 AM Reply Like
  • Hi enigma,


    Thanks for asking.


    First, I think you have to go agency by agency and eliminate the duplication and redundancy. The bureaucracy is killing us. Shrink the "chiefs/Indians" ratio. This works right down to local level government which has way too much administration as a ratio of services provided.


    Second, reform the Tax Code. Too many loopholes. Keep it progressive, but less complicated, lower marginal rates.


    Third, change over gov''t defined benefit pension to 401k equivalent. Too many hidden costs.


    Fourth, raise age of Soc.Sec. benefits and means test.


    Fifth, eliminate both spouses from receiving government health insurance -- double the cost--miniscule benefit.


    Sixth, require surpluses, when available, to pay off debt, not rebate taxes.


    Seventh, require service work for unemployment benefits. No super free ride.


    Eliminate no-bid contracts. Take measures to limit cronyism.


    I could go on, but you get the point.
    31 Jul 2011, 12:21 PM Reply Like
  • Reel- Great points and cant disagree with any, but I would add one that I consider major and beneficial to all concerned parties ' Turn over as many government agencies as possible to the private sector" the municipalities that have done so save money, get better service, higher tax base etc :)
    31 Jul 2011, 04:41 PM Reply Like
  • Hi enigma,


    Great idea !!!!


    Profit works better than patronage.


    Shame these ideas have little or no political future.
    31 Jul 2011, 08:12 PM Reply Like
  • They are already backing down:


    Its all relative. But in the meantime the U.S. continues to lose out on being the exchange currency of choice. See:, articles.economictimes...,
    31 Jul 2011, 10:57 AM Reply Like
  • Winning can be losing. Raise the debt ceiling with nothing serious on the table and more debt to be added later will get at least 1 downgrade and perhaps more coming. Every $2 Trillion of debt is $17K per household plus interest that needs to be paid back and at $16 Trillion every household owes $143K plus interest. Given that many of those HH's cannot absorb this impact then it is focused on the middle class and up so it might be about $250K per tax paying HH.


    Inflation, capital flight and lower living standards are coming.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:03 AM Reply Like
  • Really, How about a flat tax across the board. If Americans want to remain dependent on government assistance then they have to put in their share into the system. The problem is we, Americans, think that no one needs to sacrifice to make our country strong again. everyone needs to put in a helping hand. Where is our country's PRIDE. Where did all the hard working American citizens that made this country great 60 years ago? From what I have seen out of society today is that everyone wants something for nothing.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:18 AM Reply Like
  • Where did it go?


    Listen to the left over the last 50 years. I'll even use their own party. Listen to JFK's tax cutting speeches of 'not asking what your country can do for you, but...' to a recent speech of Nancy Pelosi's Mao Tse Tung impersonation.


    That's where... 'it went'.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:34 PM Reply Like
  • This was CUT off of CNBC's website: I just got off the phone with a source on Capitol Hill who has spent the past few days trying to convince Republicans to vote for a debt ceiling hike.


    He told me that the biggest obstacle he faces has been "market complacency."


    "Frankly, a bit of panic would be very helpful right now," he said.


    Really, All they want is for the public to panic so they don't have to construct a budget and can literally pass the tourch to someone else after the next election. I wish we can purge Congress and put in true Americans that can accomplish the task at hand rather then political break dancing and circus thrills.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:24 AM Reply Like
  • Hey, your last paragraph is what the TP was all about. The TP were all mostly freshmen from the private sector.


    But read the comments here. Nobody wants real people in WDC. They like the slimy cheeseball smiles of the current crop of game show hosts and carnies.


    Cause the TP sucks, bro.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:37 PM Reply Like
  • "Cause the TP sucks, bro."


    Yeah brah
    31 Jul 2011, 07:25 PM Reply Like
  • "Cause the TP sucks, bro."


    Those that think the tea party sucks are just marching to the tune of the Democratic pied piper and the media. "TP sucks" is what your indoctrination mandates. Lets not worry about policy, debt, freedom, and all that technical stuff.


    Someone else said there were going to vote against the tea party. Its good that you support liberal spending, confiscation of wealth, socialism, and government greed. But its ok, hating the tea party is popular and politically correct. I'm sure all your teenage friends will like you better for it.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:42 PM Reply Like
  • My rule of thumb is that if the group adopts some lame Revolutionary War metaphor, then the group itself is lame also. First the Minutemen and now these clowns.


    This ended up more like the War of 1812


    Yeah brah
    31 Jul 2011, 11:35 PM Reply Like
  • Lightway, "My rule of thumb is that if the group adopts some lame Revolutionary War metaphor, then the group itself is lame also. First the Minutemen and now these clowns."


    Again, metaphors and no substance. Political discourse should be about policy, not name calling. Anyone that thinks the Tea Party or Palin are all bad and universally suck is just an unintelligent political hack spouting the Democrat/Socialist mantra.
    1 Aug 2011, 08:50 AM Reply Like
  • Neil I agree.


    Wait, is that guy really playing a fife?

    1 Aug 2011, 09:22 AM Reply Like
  • The debt issue is much more complex than is generally perceived by the general public. This somewhat simplistic view of the issues has also been nurtured by political expediency, and has manifested itself in equally simplistic, draconian solutions from both sides of the isle, but primarily from the right.


    Some tea party Republicans have been acting like race horses with blinders charging towards a finish line that is on the edge of a cliff. Others in that group seem to resemble hostage takers committed to a suicidal pact that ultimately results in shooting the hostage.


    But now the right wing Republicans appear to have been properly educated as to the probable potential effects of their strategy. That, and a little help from both sinking poll numbers and a sinking stock market, has reined in the ones wearing blinders, and the hostage takers are negotiating the surrender of their guns.


    There will be some negative short term repercussions, likely coming from unexpected places. Certainly the markets will become riled, and consumers will become reticent to spend, every time the debt ceiling issue comes up in the future.


    I can see now that this issue will be ultimately resolved, and over time, diminish the national debt to manageable levels, and ultimately eliminate it, as has happened before. This may take years, but it will happen, as there is no choice.


    The panic and frenzy from the right will also fade, and the tea party republicans will pay a political price. The American public will not easily forget.


    Our political system has brought us a long way these past several hundred years. It sometimes functions in a ragged way, and there are ups and downs. Folks seem to learn the hard way every time, but they do learn.


    There is some scientific evidence that both conservative and liberal views have evolutionary significance. There are some interesting, rigorously scientific, unbiased, and non-judgmental studies that indicate the difference in these biases have roots in brain structure. My conclusion here is that we need to have both biases to be represented in the population, and in our government.


    So diversity of opinion is important. But our country runs on bipartisanship.


    Things will get better, y’all. Hang in there.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:24 AM Reply Like
  • Our country runs on debt and payoffs and an ignorant but greedy public. Take off the political goggles and look at the money flow.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:36 AM Reply Like
  • Our country doesn't run on bipartisianship. It runs along for a while during bipartisianship, but the truly big things usually come down to one side winning and one side losing.


    And unfortunately, the form of bipartisianship we've had since Bush entered office is one of I'll vote for your special interests and you vote for mine, and we'll give the bill to joe sixpack's kids!


    We have crony capitalism handing out 100's of billions of dollars to the "financial elite". Congressmen and women get rich, their families get rich. Regulators regulate their future employer - they get rich. Public unions get almost rich. And the very rich stay very rich.


    The only people that suffer? Just everyone else and their children and grandchildren (including those that are basically bribed through government programs to keep voting the same folks into office). Government dependency is nothing to be happy about.
    31 Jul 2011, 12:03 PM Reply Like
  • Yeah, kind of the opposite of everything you said.


    Have a nice day.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:39 PM Reply Like
  • "bipartisanship" is only a word to describe politicians who have no core values nor beliefs. What is so bad about one who sticks to and votes for what one believes?


    I really enjoyed the MSM who expressed outrage at the Tea Party congressmen and woman who actually voted along the lines that they said they would while running for election.


    Shock at a politician who didn't change after being elected.
    31 Jul 2011, 02:55 PM Reply Like
  • The MSM will cry outrage until you submit everything over to the left's childish demands.


    Until then you are an 'obstructionist'.


    See how that works?


    Its their way or no way. And that is called 'compromise'.


    31 Jul 2011, 03:11 PM Reply Like
  • Thanks Bildar for the upbeat view. I think each side will have to give something ideologically to a solution. I think Cons will have to give up the idea that the free market has some kind of wisdom and left alone will solve all our problems. Unfortunately, the free market consists of some very stupid and very greedy people who make disastrous decisions for society as a whole. The libs will have to give up the idea that we can spend our way back to prosperity. While this may have been true at one time. Diminishing resources, global economic pressures and population growth have made this what many have described as an "endgame". Thus conservation rather than growth must be the theme going forward.
    31 Jul 2011, 11:51 AM Reply Like
  • "I think Cons will have to give up the idea that the free market has some kind of wisdom and left alone will solve all our problems."


    31 Jul 2011, 01:40 PM Reply Like
  • Ever notice that libertarians are the biggest message hogs on SA message boards? Greed in every which way is all I can see coming from their ilk. They are all sitting on gold so why would they not want the default to happen? It's good for them but bad for the country and they don't care.
    31 Jul 2011, 05:37 PM Reply Like
  • And here comes the whaambulance.
    31 Jul 2011, 05:40 PM Reply Like
  • Yeah those nasty libertarians that just want the government out of our a**holes and pockets.
    31 Jul 2011, 07:41 PM Reply Like
  • See the above two comments to understand the limited intellect of the aforementioned libertarians.
    1 Aug 2011, 12:59 AM Reply Like
  • Well, at this rate we're not that far away from 1,000 trillion. The name of that number is sextillion. I wonder how the history books and PCr's will handle that one? I can see symbols of sexual positions being used for different amounts of debt - 17, 54, 69, etc. Who needs numbers to tell us how screwed we are. We can just use pictures.
    31 Jul 2011, 12:46 PM Reply Like
  • Actually, the next milestone is "quadrillion". But I get your point. :-)
    31 Jul 2011, 01:04 PM Reply Like
  • I laugh in our general direction.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:27 PM Reply Like
  • If this deal goes through the Senate in a 80-20 fashion, then there will be enough support in the House to pass.


    I guess enough panicked old folks called in to force their representatives to compromise. When it comes to choose between pain and deficit, Americans still overwhelmingly choose deficit.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:42 PM Reply Like
  • And you can thank FDR for instituting intergenerational slavery and dependence for that.


    We went from pioneerism and revolutionaries in 1776 to creating wards of the state, dependents white-knuckle clutching their SS check in the mail.


    I can't wait for Zerocare. Waiting room hell and DMV teller clerks shouting for the rent-a-cops to put a beat down on the hobo who wants a band aid.


    Poor doctors. They never knew that going to medical school meant becoming a public employee.
    31 Jul 2011, 01:51 PM Reply Like
  • I can't wait till the primary cycle next year for the republicans who cave in on the "deal" with the devil. They all must be voted out.
    31 Jul 2011, 02:50 PM Reply Like
  • If the Tea Party are composed of unsophisticated voters, then the welfare crowd and blue collar workers who consistently vote blue are what? Einsteins? The reality is, that raising the debt limit will only kick the can down the road - it solves nothing because the structural problems are not addressed. Don't forget, American tax payers fund the IMF who bails out PIGS, we fund the UN, we give out entitlements not just to our own who don't , won't or can't work, we give entitlements to anyone who comes over from another country legal or illegal. Plenty of food stamps and Section 8 have gone to Bosnians, Russians, Cubans, Mexicans and anyone else who comes over and has never paid taxes. So we are a ship with more leaks than the Titanic.


    Businesses aren't hiring because people aren't buying! Their profits came from cost cutting via layoffs ( Big govn always lies to you. In Charlotte, the school district scared the local folks with stories of how 600 teacher jobs would be lost due to budget short fall. In a time with every one's property value has gone down, the local officials reassessed property values and raised property taxes by some 50% now the school district all of a sudden has money to not just keep the original 600 teachers but hire 500 more and even though the number of students are consistently lower than what the school district estimates each year! Gas taxes have also increased and they wonder why restaurants are shutting down and many grocery chains will go under as people flee to the discounted grocers.
    American dollar is Toast!
    31 Jul 2011, 03:01 PM Reply Like
  • speakeasy-----------
    "If the Tea Party are composed of unsophisticated voters, then the welfare crowd and blue collar workers who consistently vote blue are what? Einsteins?
    Very well put.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:06 PM Reply Like
  • The welfare crowd and blue collar workers are as equally unsophisticated as the Tea Partiers. The difference, good or bad, is that the welfare crowd and blue collar workers, for the most part, know their place. The Tea Partiers have the notion in their pea-brains that Bachman/Palin "common sense" is all that is needed and everything else is liberal faggotry.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:21 PM Reply Like
  • bukdow......."The difference, good or bad, is that the welfare crowd and blue collar workers, for the most part, know their place."
    And that place is? Just shut up, go along with what you are told, vote democratic, never question why the things promised you have not shown up in 50 years, but believe the politician that tells you they will after the next election, and never ever ever question why your life sucks?
    31 Jul 2011, 03:35 PM Reply Like
  • That place is, realize you are nothing more than an ignorant consumer and until you actually not only make an effort to understand the bigger picture(s) but actually do gain understanding, shut your damn pie-hole and stop acting like your cornbread common sense is the answer. The world is not that simple and a country like the USA should not allow an iota of its policy to be directed by such intellectual swill.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:40 PM Reply Like
  • Spoken like a true liberal. When you run out of sayings from the playbook, resort to name calling. Your type is all to familiar.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:50 PM Reply Like
  • I am not a liberal.
    31 Jul 2011, 04:00 PM Reply Like
  • That would be, "Your type is all TOO familiar". I rest my case, O Great Patriot.
    31 Jul 2011, 04:01 PM Reply Like
  • Your new comment above to Wyatt shows that. Perhaps we both misinterpreted each others comments.
    This country is simply way too far in debt and if we are to survive the overboard spending has got to stop. It is that simple.
    31 Jul 2011, 04:26 PM Reply Like
  • Your type? Well you're the type that votes tea party and marries your cousin. I get it, you're a simple man who doesn't understand big issues, don't be embarassed, just ask someone who can read to explain these issues to you.
    1 Aug 2011, 02:32 AM Reply Like
  • The next 48 hours will be very interesting.


    Clearly the leadership in both Parties in the Congress and Administration would like to resolve this impasse and, in particular, at this point in time with the markets in Asia about to open, want to prevent any chance of panic selling of US sovereign debt and other US related securities.


    One has only to read many of the comments in this thread to be reminded yet again that few, if any, deficit hawks of the Republican Party 'back benches' will find any settlement agreeable to the leadership in both Parties acceptable to them. The question, therefore, is whether a sufficient number of Democratic Party 'back bench' centrists will now support such a compromise. Given how little any deal apparently under discussion addresses stated Democratic Party objectives, it is by no means given that the necessary Democratic Party votes will be forthcoming until the last minute, if at all.


    In short, expect conflicting reports over the next couple of days on whether the impasse will be settled for now or not.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:21 PM Reply Like
  • What an incredibly weak proposal. This will not make any headway with our debt over the next 10 years. Even if they meet the weak 3 trillion in future cuts versus 2.4T in new spending now, who is to say the next congress won't approve another 3 or 4T increase in the debt ceiling? There is nothing proposed that will actually cut debt long term. This is an exercise in futility.
    31 Jul 2011, 03:55 PM Reply Like
  • Well blame the Republicans, most voters will be in 2012.
    1 Aug 2011, 02:33 AM Reply Like
  • Default will be painful, but it is all but inevitable for a country as heavily indebted as the U.S. Just as pumping money into the system to combat a recession only ensures an unsustainable economic boom and a future recession worse than the first, so too does continuously raising the debt ceiling only forestall the day of reckoning and ensure that, when it comes, it will be cataclysmic.


    We have a choice: default now and take our medicine, or put it off as long as possible, when the effects will be much worse.
    31 Jul 2011, 04:14 PM Reply Like
  • Obama has sure destroyed this country.
    31 Jul 2011, 04:41 PM Reply Like
  • Um, the Republicans forced him into this. Just look at the public opinion polls at who people side with the in the debt ceiling debate.
    1 Aug 2011, 02:34 AM Reply Like
  • We spent too much money that we didn't have for too long. They can probably kick the can a bit further down the road but the day of reckoning will come as we continue to depreciate our currency in order to pay off debts that we're increasingly unable to. The states are as bad, if not worse, than the federal government and practically every country has significant debt issues. Expect a very likely currency crisis down the road and gold/silver to spike. Keep moderate amounts of gold (GLD)/silver(SLV) in your portfolio for insurance purposes.
    31 Jul 2011, 04:44 PM Reply Like
  • It is a victory for the Tea Party Republicans. They shifted and controlled the entire debate. If it was not for the fiscal conservatives influence it would have been another routine increase in our debt. The administration would be pushing and probably getting more stimulus programs. The is a turn away from the Keynesian policies. Or at least a tap on the breaks. There was no way they were ever getting deep spending cuts. Problem is too little too late. Stay tuned for default by inflation.
    31 Jul 2011, 07:28 PM Reply Like
  • No they didn't, they tried to take the whole process hostage, were alienated from their own party, and when the pressure mounted, caved in and wimped out. Now they are going to get voted out the next go around.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:28 PM Reply Like
  • Lightway, The leadership is who will get voted out next.
    31 Jul 2011, 09:44 PM Reply Like
  • Haha, if you think there's any leadership in the Tea Party you are very mistaken!
    1 Aug 2011, 02:35 AM Reply Like
  • Trump 2012. All there is to it.


    Too many poor leaders in government establishments. O'Bama is probably the worst president, maybe in the history of the United States. Funny how one year, the big agenda is to pass a bill that enacts spending at an alarming rate and the very next year the agenda is to avoid a default. CAN'T EVEN PLAN FOR ONE YEAR IN ADVANCE. sad.
    1 Aug 2011, 12:05 AM Reply Like
  • Trump would be great, he has enough experience through multiple defaults already lol.
    1 Aug 2011, 01:24 AM Reply Like
  • Vote the Rinos out......................
    1 Aug 2011, 07:50 PM Reply Like
  • Vote all democrats out.
    4 Aug 2011, 12:10 AM Reply Like
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