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Fri Nov 16, 2012, 12:56 PM

About this fiscal cliff

My understanding- based on everything that I have heard so far- is that this *calamity* known as the "fiscal cliff" would occur because of a combination of the expiration of the Bush Tax Cuts, as well as the across-the-board spending cuts mandated by the Budget Control Act (since the so-called "Super Committee" failed to approve a deficit reduction plan) that was ultimately approved by Congress and signed by President Obama to finally resolve the standoff over the debt ceiling in 2011. Supposedly, this would create an economic "shock" to the system that could cause all kinds of fiscal messes, may provoke another recession, etc. Assuming I understand this correctly:

1. Did Congress not think about/realize this when they approved the Budget Control Act and then failed to come to an agreement in the Super Committee? Pretty short-sighted of them not to realize that this could be a problem (if it actually is).

2. Republicans yelled and screamed and shouted about "deficit reduction" for nearly the entire year back in 2011. All of these cuts will reduce the deficit. Now, they want to restore all or most of these tax-and-spending cuts? If so, what was the whole point of everything they did back in 2011 shrieking about the debt ceiling, going bankrupt, preserving programs for future generations, blah, blah blah, etc? Have they spelled out exactly what specific cuts they want to roll back? Are they giving up on battling the deficit?

3. Republicans claim that government "doesn't create jobs". Well, then how are these tax-and-spending cuts going to cause an economic mess? They spent all of 2011 telling us that wantonly cutting spending will grow the economy. I'm confused now.

This IMHO has all of the makings of a manufactured "crisis" and I'm not encouraged to see a lot of people in DC falling all over themselves to push this and making (if not demanding) all kind of wild solutions such as cutting Medicare/Social Security benefits and/or attacking Obamacare. I'm also not encouraged by the fact that it seems that the lame duck Congress that delivered the past two miserable years are going to be the ones trying to come to a "solution". If this is a legitimate concern and not a "smoke and mirrors" crisis, I would much rather them find a temporary solution and allow the incoming Congress to resolve it.

The best thing I can say about this situation is that President Obama was handily re-elected and the Democrats have more leverage to handle these negotiations given the outcome of the election.

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Reply About this fiscal cliff (Original post)
Proud Liberal Dem Nov 2012 OP
DJ13 Nov 2012 #1
Proud Liberal Dem Nov 2012 #2
magical thyme Nov 2012 #3

Response to Proud Liberal Dem (Original post)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 12:59 PM

1. Republicans yelled and screamed and shouted about "deficit reduction" for nearly the entire year

"Now, they want to restore all or most of these tax-and-spending cuts?"


They want cuts, but not to their protected constituents, like defense.

The cuts they want are to entitlements that serve the 47%, those are okay with them.

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Response to DJ13 (Reply #1)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 01:02 PM

2. Too bad for the Republicans

that a majority of people voted for protecting social services over defense contractors.

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Response to Proud Liberal Dem (Original post)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 01:21 PM

3. There is no FISCAL CLIFF. period.

Claiming there is a fiscal cliff is an attempt to sow fear, uncertainty and panic (FUP) to manipulate we the people into accepting whatever shit sandwich the 1% tries to shove down our throats.

The Teapublicans tried to hold us hostage last year over the debt ceiling. President Obama got them to agree to massive cuts to the military and social programs in exchange for lifting the debt ceiling if congress doesn't agree on a budget he can live with. He set the target date to match the expiration of the Bush tax cuts.

If they don't agree on a budget, then the Bush tax cuts expire and cuts to the MIC and social programs will start to be phased in. This can be stopped at any point in time. This can be reversed, eg renewal made retroactive.

Now, President Obama has them by the short hairs. He has changed the nature of the budget he can live with. There *must* be increased revenues from the top "earners" or he will not sign the budget. He is also asking for a 2nd, much larger stimulus.

If they refuse, and he lets the Bush tax cuts expire across the board, then Dems can propose a middle class tax cut and leave it to the Teapublicans to accept, or refuse and go down in 2014.

What WE the People must do is hold President Obama's back. Any concerns I had dissolved when he asked for renewed stimulus. I had expected a 2nd, more targeted stimulus after the 1st one and was very disappointed when it didn't happen. Now I understand better what was happening, and why he did what he did.

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