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Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:02 PM

 

There Is No Fiscal Cliff.

Don't believe the hype. Tax cuts for the rich will expire if nothing is done. Combined with the ending of the wars it will change the economic picture eventually. It will hurt but the rich have much more to lose if nothing is done.

In the meantime we need to keep a focus on attempts to drag us into more conflicts, stand alone attacks on social security, potentially damaging decisions from the Supreme Court, and continued attacks on labor.

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Reply There Is No Fiscal Cliff. (Original post)
lalalu Nov 2012 OP
leftyohiolib Nov 2012 #1
lalalu Nov 2012 #3
freshwest Nov 2012 #2
lalalu Nov 2012 #5
freshwest Nov 2012 #9
gravity Nov 2012 #4
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #6
lalalu Nov 2012 #7
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #13
lalalu Nov 2012 #15
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #16
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #19
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #20
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #22
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #25
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #27
SouthernDonkey Nov 2012 #28
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #31
PoliticalBiker Nov 2012 #60
bossy22 Nov 2012 #11
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #14
bossy22 Nov 2012 #30
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #32
ProgressiveProfessor Nov 2012 #8
lalalu Nov 2012 #10
ProgressiveProfessor Nov 2012 #12
lalalu Nov 2012 #17
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #18
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #21
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #23
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #24
customerserviceguy Nov 2012 #26
ProgressiveProfessor Nov 2012 #40
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #41
ProgressiveProfessor Nov 2012 #57
Igel Nov 2012 #65
DCBob Nov 2012 #46
HereSince1628 Nov 2012 #29
lalalu Nov 2012 #38
HereSince1628 Nov 2012 #39
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #33
lalalu Nov 2012 #37
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #34
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #35
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #42
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #44
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #47
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #49
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #53
lalalu Nov 2012 #36
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #43
lalalu Nov 2012 #45
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #48
lalalu Nov 2012 #50
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #52
lalalu Nov 2012 #55
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #56
lalalu Nov 2012 #61
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #62
lalalu Nov 2012 #63
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #64
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #51
One of the 99 Nov 2012 #54
allrevvedup Nov 2012 #66
PoliticalBiker Nov 2012 #58
lalalu Nov 2012 #59

Response to lalalu (Original post)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:08 PM

1. calling this a "cliff" is more shock doctrine stuff an obvious attempt at getting a reduction in s.s

 

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Response to leftyohiolib (Reply #1)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:12 PM

3. agree

 

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Response to lalalu (Original post)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:10 PM

2. Wise advice. Thanks, lalalu.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #2)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:13 PM

5. Voters did a great job on election day.

 

I am hoping we can keep it going against the phony media stories.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #5)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:57 PM

9. It's hard, they're paid well to break the progressive momentum.

And no matter what, it affects our perception of what is going on and demoralizes Democrats while it encourages the reactionaries. It's hard to overcome as we are captive to a polluted stream of information daily.

One needs to remember what we're about and support those things, not tear each other up because of what the media wants us to believe about ourselves. It's said that the lie repeated often enough becomes the truth, IOW, a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The reactionaries give us enought data to fight among ourselves, and to say we're just like them.
That is not what the OFA and proved this year.

We need to keep that going. I would continue my donation to them to keep that organization going. It's going to be needed for the next twenty years. Because we have thirty years to overcome.

Thanks again for that dose of the truth in the OP.



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Response to lalalu (Original post)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:12 PM

4. Tax cuts for middle class will expire too

The Democrats still have to put pressure on the Republicans to extend them after the cliff.

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Response to lalalu (Original post)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:23 PM

6. I'm with you part of the way

I agree that cutting military spending with the sequester is a good idea, and I'm ready for the expiration of anything that uses the word "Bush-era" as an adjective, we've won two Presidential elections since that buffoon got benefits for the rich by throwing crumbs to the poor. I'm also glad to see the payroll tax holiday expire before it undermines faith in Social Security any more than it already has.

However, there are some more "cliff" things that are coming. The Medicare doc fix and the expiration of extended unemployment benefits are two major ones. Add to that the problems with the AMT (alternative minumum tax) and you've got some nonrich folks in a conundrum.

Plus, we're coming up to the debt ceiling. The Repukes coming back to Congress in January know that all they have to do is have a simple majority to refuse to raise it, and they get automatic spending cuts as the Federal government struggles to make tax revenues cover spending. The first negative effect of failure to raise the debt ceiling will be to cause a spike in interest rates, which will mean even less money to run the government as the Treasury has to budget more for interest within the ceiling.

We'll see the US split along generational lines, with Social Security recipients hanging on to what they've got, plus rising interest rates on their savings, while younger Americans have even tougher times finding jobs. It's not going to be pretty.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:40 PM

7. It will be difficult

 

but extending the tax cuts will make it more difficult for the non rich. Social security has nothing to do with young people not getting jobs. That is one of those false connections. If anything the surplus contributions made by those now collecting SS were used to keep the government functioning.

The generational split is not as wide as some pretend and young people overwhelmingly voted for democrats and the saving of programs like social security. It is nothing compared to the huge gap between the rich and those who aren't rich. Letting the tax cuts expire will hurt the rich more and will be a huge blow to policies that for decades have protected them.

Change will be painful but the losses will be much lower compared to the gains. Having more money to invest in infrastructure and innovations in our nation will reduce unemployment and the need for so many to get extensions. Many of the people who are unemployed are middle aged people with skills that can help us rebuild.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #7)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:22 PM

13. Maybe I didn't put some of that correctly

I didn't mean to imply that Social Security and jobs were related, I only meant that if we "did nothing", yes, we would avoid a ruinous grand bargain that the Rethugs have been itching for as a way to cut entitlements (thus saving Social Security in the short run) but a failure to raise the debt ceiling would cause a credit rating drop of US securities, which would lead to higher interest rates.

Older folks with CD's and such benefit from them, while younger folks are net borrowers, and suffer from higher interest rates. If interest rates go up on mortgages, then the housing market has a much worse chance of recovery, and the rest of the economy is impacted, making the outlook for jobs growth poorer.

Hopefully that clarifies what I wanted to say.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #13)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:32 PM

15. OK, I get what you are saying now.

 

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #13)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:33 PM

16. Regarding that credit rating drop:

 

In fact the sudden surge of revenue from taxes and spending cuts would more likely have the opposite effect, i.e., improve the credit rating of US securities.

Heard this on NPR so take it or leave it but it makes sense doesn't it?

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #16)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:52 PM

19. Yes, expiration of the Bush tax cuts

will bring the budget better into balance, but the bigger factor I'm worried about is the extension of the debt ceiling. Even with a complete return to the Clinton-era tax rates requires some borrowing, and if there is simply no capacity to do that, government shuts down until it can figure out what its' absolute essentials are.

That will have a very negative effect on our credit rating and the interest rates our government pays on constantly refinanced debt. As more and more of the tax income has to be budgeted to rising interest costs, more and more expenditures will have to be cut back to make up for that.

Think of it this way: If you have maxxed out your credit card, but just got a new, better paying job that will pay all your living expenses and allow for payback of the principal sum, you might just need a bit of a raise in that credit limit just to make the whole thing work. If you can't get one from your bank, you might have to turn to a sub-prime bank to lend you money at a high interest rate.

That buys you time, but making payments on the new high interest loan and the old card strap you down even further, and you might have to cut back yet again on living expenses in order to get out of the hole. If the bank that you maxxed out on decides to arbitrarily raise your interest rate (they do this just to be jerks sometimes), then you're even further in the hole. Of course, most Treasury borrowings are for very long terms, so the analogy is not exact, but so very, very much of it is refinanced every week that it's not a wholly useless example.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #19)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 04:08 PM

20. Debt ceiling is a separate issue.

 

Yes, the debt ceiling obviously has to be extended, but as I understand it that's a separate issue from the tax hikes and spending cuts that will follow from the fiscal cliff.

I suppose we can consider them as part and parcel of looming legislative priorities but fiddling with tax rates, spending cuts and "entitlements" (what the heck is SS doing in there anyway?) will not extend the debt ceiling which has to be dealt with separately.

So I agree with the OP: there's a lot that needs to be sorted out but these are separate issues and letting the Bush tax rates expire can only help.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #20)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 04:36 PM

22. Legally, yes

Multiple pieces of legislation will need to be passed in order to avoid the so-called cliff, but I see only two possible scenarios:

1) The Rethugs get just enough to approve either a grand bargain or a can-kick for a few months, and we're not likely to be happy with what our side has to give up.

2) The Rethugs will not get enough for a deal of any kind, and they take the whole "shut down the whole thing, and see who screams the loudest" scorched earth approach.

If the tax cuts expire and the sequester happens, what is their incentive to raise the debt ceiling? If anything, they'd have even more power when it comes to negotiations on that subject. The only way out is if the Treasury can accelerate tax payments, which means that Geithner will NOT keep withholding tables in place. As of the first paychecks of January, 2013, we will all see smaller ones.

Maybe we can weather the storm, maybe the temporary rise in unemployment can be sustained with the President managing to put the blame on the Repukes for it all, Bill Clinton did that quite well when it was Newtie as his opposition, but chances are, Boner's just going to cry for the camera about what a nasty man Barack Obama is.

If #1 doesn't happen, we'll see how that all plays out.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #22)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 04:49 PM

25. Yes, they'll push us over the cliff,

 

at which point they'll be "forced" to raise taxes on the 1% in the national interest (defense etc). That way they keep their idiot pledge. But there's no reason to make it easy for them and no particular reason to cut a deal before that or to enter any kind of "grand bargain" giving anything away.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #25)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 04:56 PM

27. Again, they know that there's a lot of fat and waste in the defense budget

And they'll just try to rally the recipients of that money to their side. I don't see them raising taxes on only the rich to give to their buddies in the defense industry, and I still see them holding the debt ceiling as hostage.

If they're willing to take the blame for raising taxes on middle and lower income workers, they'll be willing to let the government shut down without a debt ceiling increase. We saw what the President did the last time the crazies threatened to drill a hole in the bottom of the boat we're all in, and I fear that he will give in again.

I sure hope I'm wrong.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #13)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 04:59 PM

28. For what the current interest rates are on CD's

My mom has 40k in a CD. The interest she earned on it last year she could make up with a good carport sale! If it dropped to half, it would be no big loss.
I'm for going over the waterfall in the row boat. It's going to be painful for a bit. But in the end we'll all be in the same lifeboat!
As it is now, the rich are screaming "WE HIT AN ICEBERG!" While they are pushing the rest of us over the side; where a few of us land in inadequate lifeboats; and the rest go in the water to drown. All the while, their true reason is to clear out the second and third class steerage, so to have more room to put their shit!

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Response to SouthernDonkey (Reply #28)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 05:29 PM

31. Welcome to DU!

Glad to see you posting here. From your username, I assume you're going to get a bit annoyed at some of the posts that are anti-Southerner here, but hang in there, others will eventually rise to the defense of the progressive people of the South. My lady and I did a grand tour of WV, KY, NC, SC, and VA a few weeks ago, and we had the most wonderful time with great things to see and do, and friendly people everywhere we went.

Yeah, interest rates do suck for savers, but low rates are essential to an economic recovery. They make it possible for businesses to borrow to hire, and for consumers to make purchases to keep the economy growing. I don't think we've ever had a period of high interest and high unemployment, but I do remember the "stagflation" of the Ford years, where we had high unemployment and high inflation.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:40 AM

60. If you believe....

... the rhetoric coming from the President, Pelosi and Reid, it is their intention to let the *Bush Tax Cuts* expire which will be followed immediately with a similar tax plan without the same for the wealthy. Therefore, the line Raising Taxes on the middle class and poor is essentially a moot point. The problem will be getting it through the house. There are still enough bags of T in the house to make things difficult. The longer it is stalled in the house the more the impact on the middle class and poor will be. Democrats will need to make sure they frame the message the republicrats are holding up the process... and keep that message in the news daily. Use the republican tactics against them... with the difference of having REAL vs. made up facts.

Republicrats are terrorists. Vote them out!

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:03 PM

11. I dont think interest rates will rise

in fact I expect they will fall even more. If the fiscal cliff happens we will go into a recession, in which you will most likely see a decrease in interest rates. Remember, those dollars have to go somewhere, this isnt the euro area where you can take your euros somewhere else if your country is in the toilet. There is no other major country that uses the dollar.

It should also be noted that U.S. 10 year rate decreased on the eve of the debt ceiling debacle. Whenever there is fear about the economy- even if its due to U.S. gov spending, people run to U.S. bonds

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Response to bossy22 (Reply #11)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:31 PM

14. How much further can they fall?

They've been at historically insanely low levels for quite a few years now, and that's only because the economy has been so very weak. All of my 401K is in a money market fund, and it's earning about one-tenth of a percent per year in interest. It's basically a mattress fund.

Recession does lower interest rates, but we're still seeing rates that were already lowered by the Great Recession. Of greater concern is the US's credit rating, and as we saw in the Eurozone, as a nation's sovereign debt becomes riskier, interest rates go up. Yes, those dollars will go somewhere, but so far we've been lucky that they've been going to US securities.

If we simply shut down and do nothing at all, I doubt we will be seen as being as safe as we have been in the past. We still face massive problems if UC benefits are not extended, and especially if a new doc fix is not enacted.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #14)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 05:23 PM

30. they can go lower

just look at the Japanese 10 year.

The U.S. credit rating as rated by the major agencies is of trivial concern. What was the interest rate on the 10 year the day before the downgrade- it was higher then it is now. Japan has endured 3 downgrades I believe and borrows for 10 years at i belive .8% (We borrow at 1.5%).

You cannot compare europe to the U.S. We borrow in our own currency in which we have full control over. There is no single larger highly liquid market for U.S. dollar denominated assets as the U.S. Government bond market. Any massive greece/spain/italy style pull out would have to be offset by a huge asset bubble somewhere else- Like the DOW increasing 150% in 1 weeek. Either that or people will just be putting alot of greenbacks underneath their mattress- and even that is limited because circulating currency is less than 1 trillion.

Lastly, the u.s. government can only run out of money if it chooses too. The federal reserve could always monetize the debt with new money- this could lead to high inflation and is def. not the first course of action but it is possible. Greece doesnt have this option. The euro users are seeing a wholesale currency flight, from weaker countries to stronger countries. Your euro that you make in greece can be invested in germany with no conversions. You cannot just invest your U.S. Dollar in a canadian government bond- you would have to do a currency exchange and still, someone is left with the U.S. dollar.

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Response to bossy22 (Reply #30)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 05:49 PM

32. I suppose that they could asymptotically decline

like that last piece of cake at the office where I work. None of the ladies want to just take the last piece, and it dies the death of a thousand cuts. Yes, that could happen with interest rates, but half of very little is still damned little.

The spread between savings and Treasury rates and ordinary consumer rates is just simple bankster greed. Right now, if you've got good credit, the auto industry will finance a car at rates that are extremely low. If you have very good credit, it's easy to get a credit card with an interest rate of under ten percent, just don't expect to pile up any frequent flier miles.

Thirty year home rates are insanely low, especially considering that the money is loaned out for very long periods of time. In fact, one of the things that caused the S & L crisis of the early 1980's is the fact that small banks and savings institutions had mortgages paying in the under 10% range, and CD's that had to pay in the upper teens. If interest rates rise again, expect more pressure from the banksters for bailouts.

Yes, so far, the Rethugs haven't done permanent damage to the US financial reputation, but who's to say that will continue, no matter how badly they behave? Even the deal that produced the sequester gave the financial industry the idea that "well, they really never will go off that cliff, there's a year and a half to solve the problem, and it will take us past the election." What if those with money simply run out of patience?

I appreciate what you say about running the printing presses, and if that happens any more than it already has, look for those dollars to go into gold. We could be seeing $3K an ounce if the worst happens. Since oil moves in lockstep with gold, it won't be pretty for economies that have to buy their energy on the open market. Fracking will be here to stay.

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Response to lalalu (Original post)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:54 PM

8. Sequestration is a bit of a cliff

Shock waves will flow through the economy and they will not be pretty, not just on the military side.

If the deadline had been 1 October (Start of Federal FY) we would have had a dramatically different election cycle, though perhaps not in terms of Presidential results.

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #8)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:01 PM

10. You are right but we need a shock wave.

 

It will force congress to convene and restore funding to programs. It may be the wake up call for the public to truly see where their congressional representatives stand and the importance of federal programs. It may be what is needed to get people out in 2014.

I am not advocating suffering and hope it can be avoided. I just think extending these tax cuts will cause greater suffering down the road.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #10)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:05 PM

12. We thought the same thing prior to the Super Committee fiasco a few years back.

I do not expect the Congress to restore funding or the administration to ask for it.

It is a stealth austerity program...nothing less

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #12)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:35 PM

17. Yes it is stealth austerity either way.

 

We are not going to turn things around any time soon. One way or another we are going to have to suffer for a while.

But don't you think agreeing to any tax cuts will cause greater austerity and widening of the wealth gap?

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Response to lalalu (Reply #10)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:39 PM

18. Oh, there will be a shock wave

But I cannot see anything that will motivate the GOP to "restore funding to programs". They all know that there's a lot of fat and waste in the military budgets, and they'll figure out how to cut bases in Democratic districts wherever possible. They would love the domestic cuts that are part of the sequester, and they figure that those cuts will be the leverage they want to get to the "grand bargain".

It's going to be two years of hell for some folks, but the President did a good job of making sure that voters saw the last four years as the downpayment on the repair needed to deal with eight years of Dubya's damage. He also did a decent job of showing Rethuglican "solutions" as a return to the problems, and he can keep that up.

He's a smart guy, and if he refuses to buckle, he can hit the road to campaign for Democratic control of the House, so that we can work out long term solutions to budgetary problems in the final two years of his Presidency. It's the only hope we have to get out of the mess by 2016, so we can retain the White House and both houses of Congress. By that time, Obamacare will be seen as a boon to our society, and we can run on it, instead of away from it, as many were doing in 2010.

But in the meantime, there will be a LOT of pain.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #18)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 04:12 PM

21. Obama can restore funding cuts by executive order.

 

No it's not exactly cricket but he has that power and he might as well make use of it, and I believe he probably will, because I don't see the GOP backing down on their "pledge" not to raise taxes until they have to, i.e., until after they push us over the cliff.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #21)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 04:41 PM

23. I'm not sure that's correct

but even if it is, how does his executive order to defy a law he himself signed make the GOP'ers any more likely to approve an increase in the debt ceiling?

They'll call him a dictator, and will justify their votes against a debt ceiling increase as the only way to stop him. Like most of their tricks, it will eventually go badly for them, but not until November of 2014. In the meantime, there are likely to be some negative consequences for our national credit rating, and upward pressure on interest rates such as is happening in the Eurozone.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #23)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 04:44 PM

24. Let them call him a dictator.

 

Red states are the biggest feeders on the national teat and their constituents will be the first to squawk if their bases go dark or their checks don't arrive on time so I say bring it on.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #24)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 04:52 PM

26. If it gets to that, they will

I do believe that the biggest reason the red states get more Federal funding per capita is that they have the most military bases and other defense spending. I suppose if the President would order that the military sequesters would not happen, they wouldn't have too much to squeak about, but if it's only the military sequesters that happen, I would expect hell to break loose.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #21)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 09:40 PM

40. No he cannot

The executive branch can not create funding for something that is not appropriated by the legislative branch.

Constitution 101

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #40)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 10:33 PM

41. He can add a signing statement to emergency funding legislation

 

for example to an emergency defense appropriation or similar stopgap passed in the interim between Dec. 31 and later budget legislation, under any number of pretexts. Here's an example of how it's been done recently (p. 142):

http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/WCPD-2006-10-09/pdf/WCPD-2006-10-09.pdf

Would it be constitutional? The constitution doesn't say anything about signing statements per se, but I don't doubt that Obama would act only with a) good reason and b) thorough legal vetting, or that he could add emergency funding of social programs to national security funding legislation if he needs to.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #41)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:26 AM

57. Was there any attempt to use that money for anything?

Was it challenged in court and with what results?

The power of appropriation is black letter law and there is ample precedent for it controlling what the executive branch can do

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #57)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 03:18 PM

65. The signing statement was orders of magnitude away from what it was claimed to be.

Funding for planning for consolidation was prohibited.

One could argue that it prevented having committees and working groups set up.

Bush responded by saying that as head of the executive, he reserved the right to request consultation with the heads of departments as part of their routine jobs, which would include, presumably, planning. That's what department chairs do--and if part of their planning would normally consist of evaluating the need for the continued existence of their organizations, or shifting responsibilities, that's part of their jobs.

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #8)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 08:33 AM

46. Its already having an impact.

Some agencies are putting all new hires on hold. My wife just had a job offer rescinded with NOAA-NWS. If sequestration happens it will seriously hurt this economy no doubt.

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Response to lalalu (Original post)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 05:07 PM

29. This congress has no character it creates a tiger trap for the economy and then skips around it

Kicking indecision down the road while providing 'guiding principles" for the furute isn't worth a steaming pile of cow shit. That does one thing and one thing only...it creates ANOTHER opportunity for another Congress to play brinksmen.

Seems to me it's time to play whack a mole with the brinksman, NOW.


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Response to HereSince1628 (Reply #29)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 06:43 PM

38. It is unbelievable how congress gets away with so much

 

for doing so little.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #38)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 06:47 PM

39. If only it weren't true...

Carrying out their role in governing isn't nearly as important as carrying out their roles in politics.

And they carry majorities in reelection, because having no character beyond that of political affiliation motivates voters.

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Response to lalalu (Original post)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 05:52 PM

33. Right now Obama is holding all the cards.

 

Boner can lead his red-state lemmings over the cliff, and there's a good chance they'll all follow lest Grover give them the evil eye, but the minute their constituents feel the pinch they'll come running back to sign whatever they need to sign. The government obviously is not shutting down. California used to go through this same dumb-ass drama on an annual basis (no more, as CA Dems just won a state-senate supermajority) and dumb-ass Ahnuld would give away the store. But Obama's not Ahnuld and he's got plenty of tricks of his own up his sleeve (signing statements for example), and while he may be inclined to hammer out a "grand bargain" for personal reasons, it would be insane to make any concessions whatsoever on taxes, spending, Medicare or Social Security. And I really don't expect that he will.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #33)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 06:41 PM

37. Good points.

 

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Response to lalalu (Original post)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 06:14 PM

34. It is a cliff for people who will lose unemployment benefits

They will end at the end of the year.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #34)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 06:22 PM

35. Federal extended unemployment benefits, but not state benefits.

 

State benefits won't change, only the EUC enacted in 2009 -- unless Obama extends them with a signing statement, and I don't see why he wouldn't.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #35)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 07:31 AM

42. Signing statement on what?

A bill has to be passed through congress for the President to issue a signing statement.

And millions have exhausted their state benefits, so they need the federal extended benefits to survive.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #42)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 08:07 AM

44. On other stopgap legislation,

 

as explained in #41 above. States can also extend their state benefits beyond 26 weeks and I imagine most Dem governors would if necessary. Redstaters might be SOL in which case they need to communicate their concerns to their reps because GOP reps are the holdouts.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #44)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 08:57 AM

47. Most states don't have the money

even if the have Dem Governors.

And the President can't do a signing statement on just any bill.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #47)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 09:08 AM

49. Do you live in a red state?

 

Yes, most states are broke, as is the federal govt, thanks to Bushco pouring trillions down the toilet and years of grand theft by dubiously elected GOP governors like Ahnuld. But Dem governors will go into deeper debt if necessary to make sure people eat. If you live in a red state you need to get on the horn and pressure your tea-party reps to break their stupid Norquist pledge. Obama made one promise during the campaign and that was to roll back the bush tax cuts. He got elected and the redstate reps need to suck it up and if they don't their constituents need to give them hell.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #49)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:17 AM

53. The state I live in is irrelevant.

There are long term unemployed in all states. And they are going to lose their benefits at the end of the year if a deal isn't made.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #34)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 06:41 PM

36. I understand this would be tough.

 

Most of us will be affected in one way or another. I just see this as a war where we may have to take some shots and loses in order to win. If we give in and compromise on tax cuts again then we will face worse problems. One part of the economic turn around is ending the tax cuts and to stop giving gifts to the wealthy and corporations.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #36)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 07:33 AM

43. You understand it would be tough?

Millions need those benefits to survive to feed their children. Sounds like you have as much compassion for them as Romney.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #43)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 08:32 AM

45. I can't help what you think.

 

If you think that extending the tax cuts in exchange for a few more weeks of unemployment is a great idea then you are thinking exactly the way republicans want.

One of the problems we have today is this need for instant gratification and not thinking long term. When those weeks of extended benefits are over and the rich still have their tax cuts then what?

The real issue is for various groups to come together and raise financial support for them during this battle. I can remember when labor and civil rights groups use to do such things. If they can raise a billion for campaigns then they can raise a billion to help the unemployed while fighting republicans.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #45)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 09:00 AM

48. You're the one making this about tax cuts.

I just think that going over the "fiscal cliff" is not a good idea because it would hurt too many people. But even if it was tax cuts vs. unemployment benefits, you're saying that other people's children should go hungry to stand up for your principles.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #48)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 09:19 AM

50. My principles? It is the principles of this country at stake and

 

that is what you can't seem to understand or don't want to.

There is no fiscal cliff and the facts don't back up your assertion. Maybe you missed it but the policies of the last few decades have caused a lot of children to go hungry and continuing those policies will cause more. It is those policies that have caused so many people to lose jobs and need unemployment.

You may wish to continue giving tax breaks to the rich and that is your view. Fortunately most don't agree and the election proved it. They are willing to fight and face the challenges of changing the policies and "principles" favoring the rich.



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Response to lalalu (Reply #50)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:15 AM

52. So the principles of this country

are to let the children of the long term unemployed go hungry? I doubt that most who voted in that last election would agree with that view.

As far as your views, your lack of compassion for them makes you sound more like Romney.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #52)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:22 AM

55. Your attempt to make this about hungry children is pathetic.

 

Actually it is Romney and the republicans who used the scare tactic of threatening to lay workers off and put people in poverty if President Obama won. It didn't work then and these lame threats aren't working now.

You need to come up with some better talking points. No one is buying the fiscal cliff and starving children crap.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #55)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:26 AM

56. But that is what this is really about

whether you like it or not. Whether you admit it or now. If no deal is made by the end of the year a lot of people are going to get hurt. You seem to be more concerned about winning a political victory than about helping people.

The fiscal cliff is real, especially for those who will lose their unemployment benefits at the end of the year. That fact that you think that is crap just proves you're more in line with Romney than Obama.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #56)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:40 AM

61. Hungry children and laid off workers are regular scare tactics

 

of republicans and you are the one using them.

The public has spoken loud and clear. The lines drawn during the election were very clear. No tax cuts for the wealthy are to be extended.

You need to try something scarier. You can pretend a meteor will hit if the wealthy don't get the tax cuts extended. Maybe you can have Glenn Beck put up a chart.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #61)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:45 AM

62. You keep making this about tax cuts

It is about the fiscal cliff and if a deal can be made by the end of the year. For millions of people there is a fiscal cliff. They will lose their unemployment benefits. Many who are underemployed, working minimum wage part time jobs will see their payroll and withholding taxes go up. Many middle class workers for the government and contractors will lose their jobs. You seem to only care about winning a political fight. That's rather heartless.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #62)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 12:34 PM

63. There is no fiscal cliff

 

and the rich are going to lose their tax cuts. Your scare tactics aren't working and the election proved it.

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Response to lalalu (Reply #63)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 12:39 PM

64. Yes there is

You're just denying reality when you say there isn't one.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #48)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 09:21 AM

51. Don't fall for the scare tactics.

 

Children are not going to starve because a bunch of tea party yahoos took some asshole pledge. Obama is in an entirely different bargaining position now than he was last August when he signed this stupid thing and now it's the yahoos turn to squeal, so don't let them scare you out of your lunch money.

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Response to allrevvedup (Reply #51)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:18 AM

54. I hope you are right

and they can make a deal by the end of the year.

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Response to One of the 99 (Reply #54)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 04:22 PM

66. I think they'll make a deal.

 

They might come close to the brink but I think it'll be wrapped up before the house and senate adjourn for Christmas recess on Dec. 16, at least for six more months. Still it wouldn't hurt to let your rep know you expect some action particularly if you have a tea-party rep.

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Response to lalalu (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:28 AM

58. Bump in the Road....

except that the *sequestration* will hurt the poor, young and the elderly a LOT more than it will hurt the wearthy.
Sequestration targets social programs at the bottom, but nothing at the top... defence department cuts... big deal - public funded (our tax dollars) so the rich get off scott-free.... again

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Response to PoliticalBiker (Reply #58)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:36 AM

59. It will hurt but not end those programs and if people

 

vote in 2014 the funding can be restored.

If the wealthy and corporations extend these tax cuts then eventually programs helping them will be ended. Also targeted are tax cuts which actually reward companies that offshore jobs which has been a major factor in increasing poverty.

There is no fiscal cliff. What exists is a chance to turn around the policies of this nation. These threats are similar to the ones made during the election about cataclysmic events if President Obama won. The sun did come up on November 7th and it was brighter than ever.

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