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Lets go over the cliff

I know this won’t reach that many people, but all this worry about the fiscal cliff is just not justified. Its going to bring the tax rates back to what they were in the 90’s and thats going to be bad for the economy? I don’t think so. Somehow we managed to have the largest expansion of our economy during those “repressive” tax rates. After the Bush tax cuts, we’ve seemed to have nothing but recessions and sputtering recoveries, but the very rich have done well.

I really do believe that our economy will recover whether or not their is a compromise. I’m actually afraid that any compromise will actually hurt the economy in the long run. However, even going over the cliff is not going to be enough. We are racking up a trillion dollars a year in additional debt. Going over the cliff will only raise a trillion dollars in ten years, not per year. we have a trillion dollar problem and congress thinks it can be fixed with a billion dollar solution. That like throwing a cup of water on a house fire.

If you are wondering if I’m a republican or a democrat, I’m a RINO. I am fed up with all this party line bologna (you can bet I’d rather use a different word here). If I was a democrat, then I’d be a DINO, but I haven’t heard that term used, yet. I can think for myself and I don’t need any party hacks to tell me what my opinions should be.

Well this is my rant and rave, thanks for reading.

I always heard if you say democrat you are a republican because then it rhymes with rat. Now if I was a democratic party supporter I would say one thing, I f I was a republican I would say another, If I was an independent I would say we need a 3rd party, sure I could say don’t tase me bro, or wtf pepper spray, there is too much going on to quantify, but the general trend has been loss of rights, and rich getting richer, poor getting poorer and middle class disappearing.

Taxes are what all the talk is focused on, but that’s being used as a distraction…The REAL issue is the mandatory, painful military budget cuts…So-called defense contractors would really take a haircut, their sacred cows led to the slaughter house…The Republicans will vote for a tax rate increase on the top 2% before they will allow their biggest campaign contributors to take a $600 Billion hit…Talk about “entitlements”…

What everyone should be concerned about economically is the impact of forced spending cuts of ALL types.
Not just military.

Every category of federal gov’t spending would be cut, and that would lead to a HUGE increase in unemployment. Whether you are talking about printer paper, or cars, or ammunition, or computers, or widgets, or anything else that they purchase on an ongoing basis, federal purchasing of everyday items is a significant part of the economy.

Cut federal gov’t purchasing, and you wind up putting a lot of people out of work.
This issue is far more complex than many people realize.

The govt. seems to move at such a snails pace…but there is a purpose. Look at the upheaval in Egypt with such radical election results fostering such sudden changes. We have been so ingrained with our posturing before anything gets done, you just have to let it run it’s course. Personally, it is really tough for me to take. I left the Democratic party because they were too conservative for me. So, that’s the place I come from.

Two things that really hurt our economy were the wars and the tax cuts, both done too suddenly and without national debate. The urgency was fostered by our 911 attacks and national fear. But now, what is really missed, is our lack of investment in our “me first” culture. If we change that attitude, slowly, and champion things like national healthcare, education, infrastructure and reformed immigration policies and never let our concern for the economy be the driving issue, it takes care of itself. It does in real life, with our families, it should in public. You take care of the ones you consider your family, you get paid back in full…it is that simple. Our family nationally, is our citizenry and all those who aspire to it.

There is one thing that would change our political system for the better and do more for putting things in perspective is .run off elections. No third party ever fluroushes without a forum and no forum is provided when people can win an election with 34% of the vote.

So it IT IS the economy…but it’s people first and the economy takes care of itself. The debt only becomes a concern to those not in office. The strongest administrations that have shown the greatest economic growth are those who show the greatest compassion for the people they govern. You can tell by the words they speak.

Anyone who talks first about money issues, is doomed to failure. Anyone who talks investment in people first, is destined for success.

I think that as long as the country looks to the stock market as the single most important indicator of the country’s well being the vast majority of Americans will be the victims of predatory corpocracy, dagosa. Too many people have their future happiness invested in the markets and feel that they benefit when the chart is positive. They don’t realize that the people who run the markets are scamming fortunes in the shuffling of digits from one column to another and don’t really give a damn if the 401Ks go broke as long as they can cut a profitable deal on the way down. The 2008 crash poured $billions into the pockets of those who run the markets. Those $billions came from the “nest eggs” of hard working Americans, many of whom now rage against the administration for robbing them and giving ‘their’ money to the lazy who draw entitlements. The politicians and Wall St crowd play together behind the smoke and mirrors from Faux Nooooz and laugh on their way to the bank with our money.

Rod Knox…you have that right. The average joe, you and I are all stock holders directly or indirectly. The stock managers make a killing with poor regulatory inforcment. Look at the housing scam where the manipulators made gazillions and the rest of us not only lost our shirts, but had to bail ourselves out. It is a fallacy to say that WE lost money. The average middle class lost money as it shifted. Now, we are told to get out of this bailout simulated deficit, more has to be taken out of middle and low income class support programs.

To hear FOX commentators talk, you would think the poor are hording all the money ! " Good grief ! "(Charley Brown)

A respected economist recently did an analysis, and concluded that if all loopholes were closed, and all subsidies were eliminated, the budget gap would be more than closed! In other words, Americans, like Greeks, Frenchmen and Italians are not paying the taxes they are SUPPOSED to be paying.

The Italian goverment is now going after the owners of newly purchased luxury cars, and finds many of these owners report very small incomes!

The US tax rates should be restored to the pre-Bush lvels, and all industry and other susidies eliminated. Current corporate tax rates are OK, and do not cause business to go to China. The US economy is already growing, and will continue to do so. My argument here is that a salaried person has no opportunities to to cut corners on his tax return, while businesses and self-employed owners can do almost anything they want. Even Buffet agreed that his secretary had few options, but companies and owners had all these loopholes.

Farm subsidies are some of the worst pork barrel programs; paying farmers NOT to grow things, for instance. Biofuel subsidies are evil and should be eliminated, as with solar and wind power. Any oil production subsidies should be eliminated as well. With $90 oil we can develop all sorts of deposits.

I am neither Republican or Democrat, but any government or family cannot live beyond its means.

More than one pundit has defined Fox (Faux) News as:

Rich people paying other rich people to tell middle class people to blame poor people for all of their problems.

And, in truth, this bit of satire is actually very accurate.

@Docnick A respected economist recently did an analysis, and concluded that if all loopholes were closed, and all subsidies were eliminated, the budget gap would be more than closed!

I agree. The problem is, the middle class and small business take advantage of much of these loop holes or deductions for some. Remember, a small business owner pays no personal income tax on money he reinvests into his business. Some might call that a loop hole till you realize it’s more than half of the wages paid to the middle class. “subsidies” are often used to stimulate growth in some areas and keep consumer prices in check. I don’t think, nor do I feel you think that we can paint all of these with the same brush. But. your point is well taken. But “pork” for some is a necessity for others.

Should we be engaged in “shifting” the wealth of this nation ? Bet your sweet buttocks. It has been shifting away from the middle class a little too long.

A great many Americans live pay check to pay check and fall for the flim-flamming of media advertising. Being the extreme cynic that I am the mass marketing of real estate loans in the early years of G.W.Bush’s administration caused me to be concerned but all around me people were trying to cash in on the wealth the banks offered. Any advice that I offered seemed to paint me as one of those “nattering nabobs of negativity” that Agnew held such contempt for. We are now in the chasm left when marketers successfully sell us more than we can afford. Like so many indulgent mothers at the beginning of the new year, struggling to make ends meet when their compulsion to fulfill their kid’s dreams at Christmas has left them broke. It was a grand party for many but how does the rent get paid now? How cold will it get if the gas is turned off? Somehow the bills and the debts must be paid. But who will pay them? Should millions of minimum wage earners whose homes are in foreclosure because their factory jobs have been outsourced to China pay the full bill? The wealthy, whose incomes and wealth have continued to grow by outsourcing to China, have convinced a great many Americans that they cannot be bothered with the responsibility. They must retain their fortunes for future investments… Most likely in China.

Remember too that because the prime was so low, the only way banks could swing a profit was to package the loans and move them onto the market at rates higher then they could offer their customers. The Fed was IMO, one of the big reasons this snow ball started. Low rates that were too low and lack of oversight. Greenspann should be doing time, hard time. The banks, even the most reputable, are profit driven endities that were forced to play this game. It doesn’t help that after the bailout, they used much of the monies to pay their " poor"directors off in bonuses they contractually get as percent of what they take in, regardless from whom it comes. If they didn’t pay, they were looking at huge lawsuits…thanks again Alan for allowing all this to occur.

I used to be military. A.F. The first thing to do is assign the blame. That is tough in this case.

Congress proposed it and the President agreed to it. Both are to blame. Neither one will admit it.

The House is in a position where they can propose anything reasonable and get it signed without a fight. Funny how IT isn’t being proposed. Funny how a ten year tax holiday hasn’t worked out as a way to wean business and industry off tax dollars.

Funny that the people in states that take the most money from government are voting for Republicans.

Whatever happens, it won’t seem funny.

I may be a little crazy here, but the crash of the banks in 2008 to me was not a natural cycle. It smelled of a conspiracy to be that largest heist of Ft Knox in history, and it looks like it worked.

But to me the worst thing that came out of it was the FDIC closing so many small independent banks around the country and giving their assets to the giants, Wells Fargo and B of A to name two of them. How they did this was use the asset criteria for home mortgage holdings of applying an asset value to each home mortgage based on the average sales price in the last 90 days. At the time, nothing was selling so the assessed value of each mortgage was $0.00, therefor the bank did not have enough assets to stay in business. In many small towns where these banks were located, the homeowners still had income and were still paying their mortgage, but that did not matter.

It is true that large cuts in government spending will lead to large job cuts, but look how we got there in the first place. If you work for the government in any kind of management position, and you wish to work your way up the ladder, your advancement is dependent solely on your annual performance evaluations. Your advancement is not controlled by your immediate superiors directly. Your eval goes to a board that sorts through all the evals and selects what it thinks are the best and those people get the promotions.

You would think that these selection boards would be looking for examples of competence, accomplishment, and dedication. But no, that is not the case, the two primary bullets that get you advanced are the size of your budget and the number of people you manage or supervise, directly or indirectly (the size of your command). The bigger the numbers, the better your chances.

We have a government that has a lot of dedicated and competent people who for the most part are conservative and believe that government spending should be reduced, except for their budget. If I were the president, I would immediately have any reference to budget size or command size banned for any performance evaluation, although any savings to the budget would be allowed and considered positive. anyone with a bullet referring to their budget size or command size would automatically be rejected from consideration for advancement. This would reign in excessive spending faster than anything else.

“A respected economist recently did an analysis, and concluded that if all loopholes were closed, and all subsidies were eliminated, the budget gap would be more than closed!”

I’m skeptical. The gap between revenues and outlays is $1 trillion; one third of total expenditures. Except for military expenses for Iraq and Afghanistan. Those are off the books.

If the Bush tax cuts set with the sun on 12/31/2012 and the Sequester takes place, we will only reduce the annual $1 trillion budget deficit by $500 billion - there’s still $500 billion left. Maybe loopholes and subsidies could have a substantial effect on the remaining $500 billion.

The people in charge 10 years ago ignored intelligent warnings

and denigrated those who warned them. But then, a local entrepreneur who was a customer at my shop laughed at my concern for his offering mortgages based on the buyers stated income and appraisals based on the hot market. Of course he enjoyed a good income from the growing bubble and when it burst corporate bankruptcy left his personal assets in tact and he dismissed the homeowners who lost everything in making him a high roller for a few years. Today that entrepreneur operates a cash for title/pay-day loan office.

@jtsanders The economist went through it step by step, and came up with $1 trillion. He added that over a certain income level, like $250,000 the government should “claw back” social security payments and some medicare. Most other governments do that. He did not even have to touch the military.

Basically, the additonal tax collected and the cut in redundant services and subsidies each amounted to $500 billion.

If Toyota ran the country, that’s probably what they would do using “lean sigma management”.

With this approach, no one below the middleclass would pay any more tax. The middle class would pay slightly more.

Maybe I’ll comment later after gathering my thoughts a little better, but whattaya think, folks? If you cut spending, of course people will be put out of work-especially the defense contractors-that’s where the money is being spent. And all those states that want to cecede from the union, are getting anywhere from $1.50 to $1.70 back for every dollar they send into the system. The blue states are subsidizing the red states by and large. My Dad worked in the defense industry but would always vote republican, then would get laid off after voting them in. (of course that’s just reversed now)

At any rate the government is just a big collection device pulling in money from all over and then dispersing it. If you change who gets the money, you just change what industries and locations will gain or lose but not change the total. The trick is to pull money in from that great surplus sitting in accounts all over that are not now being spent. A clue is 15% capital gains. Do you really think a 15% versus a 20% cap gains rate makes a bit of difference in investment decisions? Its all part of that crap we have been fed by special interests.

And true, Greece would have no problem if people simply paid the tax that was due. A good book is “Boomerang” that talks about this and other countries. Of course the Greeks are not exactly aggressive business people but paying their taxes would go a long way. I was amazed when we first pulled in to Athens either on a Monday or Wednesday, can’t remember, but everything was shut down at 2:00 as a customary thing. No stores, no banks, nothing open. I would be open 24/7 if I were in trouble.

Hello McFly!

@RodKnox Yes, Of all the people who should have known, Allen Greenspan is the most guilty. He advocated loosening the purse strings to “get more money into the hands of more people”, regardles of their ability to pay back those loans. He also let financial instituons do things that would make a Swiss or German banker blush.

In China the average home buyer has at least 30%!!! in cash as a down payment. In most countries you need a letter from your employer stating your family income, 30% of which needs to cover principle, interest and taxes of your new home. Lying on a mortgage application form is considered FRAUD in most countries.

In adding it all up, it started under Clinton and got exacerbated by Bush, including fighting a ruinously expensive war (Iraq) with a … TAX CUT!!!, the first such action in AMERICAN history. If you study the history of the Roman Empire during its decay period, you find similar irresponsible behavior by heads of state with the connivance of their Senate equivalent.

@Docnick, please provide a reference. I have a very hard time visualizing how it works. If 2% of the total population makes more than $250,000 the percentage that makes over that amount after retirement must be much less. I find it hard to believe that taxing their medicare and social security benefits amounts to much of anything compared to $1 trillion.