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April 26, 2015

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Letter to the editor:

President’s fairy tales don’t help

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Our president continues to call for increased government spending but says it won’t raise the deficit. I’m not someone who believes all government spending is bad or that it cannot help the economy grow, but at least when New York Times columnist Paul Krugman calls for more spending, he admits it will raise the deficit.

Much of the spending the president has done over the past four years has added to the deficit; it is likely that new spending will be no different. It would be nice if the president were as straightforward as Krugman.

If President Barack Obama believes that reducing spending at this time would damage the recovery and the economy, as Krugman does, then he should come out and say so.

Then Americans can have a real debate about that.

By spinning fairy tales that more spending will not add to the deficit, the president engages in the same game played in the Bush administration: making statements and promises that simply are not supported by the facts in an effort to shield Americans from some very harsh realities.

It really does need to stop.

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  1. The truth is that taxes are going up, costs to live are increasing and at the most, the 'rate of growth' of spending is slowing.

    Neither the Republicans or the Democrats have put forth a plan that puts us on a path to spending that comes close to matching revenue.

    I believe that spending cannot be cut drastically or quickly without damaging the economy, but I also believe the we cannot continue to spend at the rate we are without damaging the present and future economy.

    You hear the word 'balance' used often, but to Republicans that means spending cuts and no tax rate increases and to Democrats it means higher taxes, more spending and no real spending cuts.

    Real leadership would be for the President and both parties to admit that more spending will increase both the debt and deficit, more taxes will be required, we are going to have to go after the waste and fraud in the budget, both defense spending and domestic spending are going to have to be scaled back, in as fair and reasonable way as possible and entitlement programs are going to have to be modified, at least for future recipients.


  2. March 1, the Sequester kicks in. These are the automatic spending cuts that trim 2.5 percent of the fiscal year 2013 budget with 85 billion in automatic cuts in defense and discretionary programs. Recall this was President Obama's solution to the August 2011 debt/deficit problem when the Supercommittee failed to reach a compromise. The Sequester was to become effective on January 1, 2013: The fiscal cliff. Congress and President moved it back to March 1. The latest likely solution will be to "kick the can down the road" yet again. Probably delay the sequester until September 31 or even December 31. If the GOP is smart, and I never accused them of being so, it will let the sequester happen on March 1. Then, bam boom bang: The Continuing Resolution expires on March 27 with no additional funds to operate. The Federal government closes down. No one except the government employees in Washington DC, including Congress and the President, will take notice. In fact the rest of the country will benefit with a government shutdown. Just what it deserves. Let er rip.


  3. Once upon a time...........

    "Neither the Republicans or the Democrats have put forth a plan that puts us on a path to spending that comes close to matching revenue."

    Equally true - Neither Republicans or Democrats have put forth a plan that puts us on a path to revenue that come close to matching spending.

    We have an impasse here and two sacred cows are at stake. The sacred cow of the Republicans is taxes that they refuse to raise and would prefer to lower. The sacred cow of the Democrats are the entitlement programs. Little will change until and unless both are put on the table.

    We don't have a problem that is strictly spending. We don't have a problem that is strictly revenue. We have a DEFICIT problem and until we attack it from both sides, improvement will be limited.

  4. "The sacred cow of the Republicans is taxes that they refuse to raise and would prefer to lower. The sacred cow of the Democrats are the entitlement programs. Little will change until and unless both are put on the table." @ Jim Weber

    Bingo and the Sequester was born.


  5. Michael, have you gone off your rocker! Your comments are way off the mark. Hey! Look, if I have to point out where you are wrong with your comments.... Look, you are losing your best position when you start a false debate like the one you posted above.

    Are you bored, nothing to do on a Monday, on President Day?

    The system is corrupted with huge amount of money given to political candidates. Federal and State elections are being sold to the highest bidder. Stick with the facts. Don't lose your position. Don't throw away your trump card with the comments you spewed out today!

  6. I totally agree that our Legislative branch (Congress) is corrupted by money and lobbyists. That is the biggest issue we have facing us, but as long as we re-elect the same people over and over again, that isn't going to change. We need term limits, public financing of campaigns and lobbying reform. We will never get any of that by 'approving' what we do get by re-electing the same people.

    The direct quote...'and it won't add a dime to the deficit'... Several of the programs the President proposed would be laudable if they were administered properly and lobbying in Congress would not insure that they money allocated was not misappropriated and wasted. And even if we say the programs would be properly administered, to say they won't add a dime to the deficit .... is just not true. We can't pay for what we spend now and the President calls for increased spending and says it won't add to the deficit? What?

    If the President were wise enough and brave enough to call for increased taxes (on the wealthy or on everyone) to pay for all the increased spending plus a little more to pay for what we already spend, I'd have no problem. I could support some of the programs he proposed. But that isn't what is being proposed. Just like the previous administration and Congress, the money will be spent but it won't be paid for with additional revenue or reductions elsewhere and the deficit and debt will rise.


  7. Wolf! Wolf! Wolf!

  8. Let's file away the statements of President Obama and Alan Krueger and re-visit them in 6 months. I have never been a Bush apologist and I won't be an Obama apologist either.

    Much of the debt and deficit is the responsibility of the former President, his administration and those Congresses. The task at hand is doubly difficult because spending wasn't property dealt with for 8 years. SOMEBODY, at SOMETIME is going to have to deal with the debt and deficit. When Bush was in office, he would not take the tough steps necessary. So far, Obama has also been unwilling to do so, and now the steps required are even more painful.

    Words and promises are still as cheap as they were from 2000 to 2008. We need real leadership. Let's see if President Obama has what it is going to take.


  9. Comment removed by moderator. Personal Attack

  10. The president is not calling for increased government spending. The tens of thousands of people a day that are signing up for supplemental income, medical assistance, education assistance, and various other programs are demanding additional government spending.

    Deficit spending is not the fault of our presidents. It's the fault of millions of people that think they can take something from the government and not be anything to the government.

    Politicians are giving people exactly what they want. Maximum entitlements with very low taxes.

  11. Again, let's set partisanship aside and look at the facts. The people who we elect never really want to spend less and/or shrink government. Spending and growing government is how they 'stay in office'!

    The only real difference is that Republicans make claims about their intentions that the 'facts' don't support.

    It was OK to have two parties that wanted to spend more and more (just in different areas)... as long as we had a vibrant economy and taxes were raised somewhat from time to time.

    The real problems started when our vibrant economy stopped being so vibrant and our elected leaders decided that taxing enough to make our continued spending increases somewhat affordable was just too unpopular to consider.

    Nothing has changed recently and we are on the same course. Until circumstances force a change or enough Americans get frustrated enough to force a change, we will continue to travel this same course.

    It will take an extraordinary President to be willing to tell the whole truth to Americans and so far, he or she has not appeared on the scene.


  12. Gerry,

    Sorry to disagree but our Presidents and our members of Congress do have a responsibility here. You're correct to point to Americans who want many benefits but also very low taxes, but we elect our leaders and expect them to tell us when what we want isn't really in our best interests. Instead, they just can't bring themselves to tell the truth because it would be unpopular. I do hold them responsible for that failure.

    I used to hold just one party responsible, but my intellect and logic finally made me see the reality.


  13. Comment removed by moderator. Personal Attack

  14. "The direct quote...'and it won't add a dime to the deficit'... "

    That is not a direct quote.

    What Obama actually said:

    "... tonight I'll lay out additional proposals that are fully paid for and fully consistent with the budget framework both parties agreed to just 18 months ago. Let me repeat: Nothing I'm proposing tonight should increase our deficit by a single dime. It is not a bigger government we need, but a smarter government that sets priorities and invests in broad-based growth."

    He never actually said "it won't add a dime to the deficit."

    Casler's entire argument doesn't seem to be based on what Obama actually said.

    "Nothing has changed recently and we are on the same course."

    This, also, is not true.

    "Here's a pretty important fact that virtually everyone in Washington seems oblivious to: The federal deficit has never fallen as fast as it's falling now without a coincident recession."

    "To be specific, CBO expects the deficit to shrink from 8.7% of GDP in fiscal 2011 to 5.3% in fiscal 2013 if the sequester takes effect and to 5.5% if it doesn't. Either way, the two-year deficit reduction -- equal to 3.4% of the economy if automatic budget cuts are triggered and 3.2% if not -- would stand far above any other fiscal tightening since World War II."

    Would the moderator like to expand on where this "personal attack" is?

  15. ksand99, one form of a personal attack is when a comment can be viewed as having ridicule or disrespect, as opposed to simple disagreement, as a motive.

  16. To the Moderator,

    Thank you. I am fine with being disagreed with. I do make mistakes, as with a quote that wasn't correct and other things. What I would prefer not to see is ridicule... of myself or anyone else, so I thank you for your diligence. We can disagree without being disagreeable.


  17. So you'll publish a letter to the editor ridiculing Obama's policies as "fairy tales" but when that same exact language is used to describe the position of Mr. Casler, it's objectionable?

    You don't view that as a double standard?

  18. Michael... Run for office on the platform that you're going to cutSocial Security, Medicare and Medicaid. See how many votes you get. People want assistance and if the politicians don't give it to them they can't get elected. A while back Social Security recipients didn't get a cost-of-living increase because inflation was muted. My wife gets $1550 a month and usually gets an increase of a few bucks a month. The outcry over not getting a cost-of-living increase was something to behold. If the gray hairs won't give up a few bucks what makes you think they're going to accept the massive cuts it would take to balance the budget. The unfunded liabilities currently sit at $66 trillion.

  19. I do apologize about the quote. I was lazy and did not want to read through the entire state of the union again to find the quote, although I did watch the entire state of the union speech.

    The government is spending nearly a trillion dollars more than comes in per year. The deficit (that is what we put on the government credit card each year) was 8.7 % of GDP in 2011 and will now be ONLY 5.3 % of GDP. Our GDP is 15 trillion dollars! Any reduction is commendable, but this is tiny.

    With a debt of 16 trillion dollars, quite a bit more is going to be required over time than a tiny reduction in the deficit as a percentage of GDP.


  20. Gerry,

    I don't 'expect' that most Americans would take kindly to any changes to SS or Medicare. That doesn't make it the wrong thing to do. It means that such action would be unpopular. We are at a place where our elected representatives will not propose and pass ANYTHING that is unpopular. We will not continue to be a successful nation if we cannot make tough and unpopular decisions.


  21. "I was lazy and did not want to read through the entire state of the union again to find the quote, although I did watch the entire state of the union speech."

    Right... your "direct quote" was neither direct, nor a quote. The actual quote and few lines of context destroys the core of your argument.

    "Any reduction is commendable, but this is tiny."

    A $505 billion reduction in the deficit is tiny? That's a 40% reduction in the deficit in three years. Your perception does not seem to match the facts.

  22. "I don't 'expect' that most Americans would take kindly to any changes to SS or Medicare. That doesn't make it the wrong thing to do. It means that such action would be unpopular."

    Mike, how do you square that with your comments in the past? You have been one of the most vocal critics of cuts to the wasteful Medicare Advantage private insurance scheme.

    In August of last year, you wrote:

    "Those changes to Medicare Advantage will hurt seniors like my wife."

    In criticizing Medicare, you criticized the fact that Medicare doesn't cover 100% of costs, only 80%. It seems a few months ago, you were arguing that we should be spending MORE on Medicare, not less.

  23. "Nothing I'm proposing tonight should increase our deficit by a single dime." - President Obama, SOTU 2013

    "[President Obama] never actually said 'it won't add a dime to the deficit.'" - ksand99

    While it may be true that President Obama left himself a backdoor by saying "Nothing ... should increase" instead of "Nothing ... will increase" I think most people would feel that was the meaning to be conveyed. This is in line with Obama using a relative rather than absolute term to describe the State of the Union. ("stronger" rather than "strong" or "good".)

    Strictly speaking, government spending "should" not increase the debt/deficit as long as revenues are increased to match. But we all know that simply does not happen. Our elected representatives (and ultimately the voters) have failed to answer the very basic questions of "What do we need, what do we want, and what can we afford?"

    Obama can propose anything he thinks the American people want or need, but it is up to Congress, and arguably more importantly the American people themselves, to tell him what we really want and need and are willing to pay for, and how it will be paid for.

  24. I think that we have a medical care problem in America. It is too expensive. Whether it is medicare, Medicaid, Medicare Advantage, etc.... it costs too much. My issue with the ACA is that I don't think it addresses the problem, which is cost. In the past, I did not favor a government controlled health care system. That was when I had employer provided coverage. Now that I am self employed and have to purchase my own expensive insurance, I don't hold the same opinion. I'm not sure what the answer is but I know the system we have is simply too expensive. I don't think the ACA is the right prescription but I'm not sure what is.

    I know the costs must be reduced or most Americans need to make a lot more money than they do now.


  25. Here's my question: How many broken promises or unfulfilled commitments does it take before the American people have had enough?

    To me, this isn't a partisan question. Elected officials of both parties continue to say one thing and then do another. I'm thoroughly disgusted at this point.


  26. Boftx is correct. I was lazy and got caught, so shame on me. However, the intent of what the President said was hard to miss.

    I don't expect the President to flesh out the details of how the spending will be paid for in a speech. To do so would invite attack.

    Former President Bush said oil would pay for the war in Iraq but did not provide any details. When that didn't happen, he didn't say anything and Americans mostly yawned.

    President Obama said the stimulus would be used to create shovel ready jobs to repair infrastructure. When that mostly did not happen, he said that shovel ready jobs were not so shovel ready and grinned. Again, Americans mostly yawned.

    I could provide many other examples, but they all beg the question: How long do we continue to give these people a pass? There are not minor glitches...they are MAJOR FAILURES.


  27. The base line CBO deficit projections can be downloaded as an Excel spreadsheet here:

    Table 1-1, line 30, shows the projected deficit declining to a minimum of $430B in 2015 and then beginning to rise again. (Note, these figures include the effects of the sequester from what I can tell, judging from the figures and notes on table 1-7.)

    With that in mind, just what did President Obama mean when he said his proposals should not increase the deficit? If he meant that they would not increase it over the current deficit of $1,089B then he is probably correct, but if he meant that they should not increase the projected deficits then I think there is room for debate.

    If as a result of his proposals we have a deficit of say $500B in 2016 instead of the projected $430 is that an increase in the deficit or not?

    Just what was Obama's baseline for that claim?

    And the real bottom line is this: the debt, and interest on that debt, continues to grow every year in absolute terms (line 34.) At some point we simply must put a stop to this!

  28. So, in 2015, almost 2 full years from now, we will still be spending 430 BILLION dollars more than we bring in. Well, let's all sing hallelujah! We sure will be able to stop the debt from rising further if we get that accomplished! NOT!

    Yes, at some point, we must put a stop to all this NONSENSE!


  29. For extra credit, look at the numbers on line 32 very carefully after reading the note on line 69. What does that tell you about Social Security and the ability of the government to continue to raid the trust fund?

    Of special interest is what happens to the numbers on lines 30, 31 and 32 in the years 2022 and 2023 (cols O and P, respectively.) The roll-ups in cols Q and R are even more disturbing.

  30. I think this is where things veer from stated policy and intent to wild conspiracy theory and silly interpretive nonsense.

    There will always be a faction of individuals who hear words... very clear language... and make wild interpretations of that language in order to justify their prejudices and belief systems. That entire problem is on display here for all to see.

    "Obama said X." No, he didn't.

    "Ok, he didn't SAY X, but he meant it!" No, he didn't.

    In context, his words were very clear.

    Secondly, citing CBO projections is meaningless, as the very programs and offsets Obama was talking about in the SOTU have not been evaluated by the CBO.

    Both Obama's speech and the resulting Q&A cited above are clear: Obama will propose programs and offsets.

    Simply, the very few who are claiming to have watched Obama's speech are omitting large swaths of it.

    "To hit the rest of our deficit reduction target, we should do what leaders in both parties have already suggested, and save hundreds of billions of dollars by getting rid of tax loopholes and deductions for the well-off and well-connected. After all, why would we choose to make deeper cuts to education and Medicare just to protect special interest tax breaks? How is that fair? How does that promote growth?"

    "Now is our best chance for bipartisan, comprehensive tax reform that encourages job creation and helps bring down the deficit. The American people deserve a tax code that helps small businesses spend less time filling out complicated forms, and more time expanding and hiring; a tax code that ensures billionaires with high-powered accountants can't pay a lower rate than their hard-working secretaries; a tax code that lowers incentives to move jobs overseas, and lowers tax rates for businesses and manufacturers that create jobs right here in America. That's what tax reform can deliver. That's what we can do together."

    When you ignore the false quotes and put the speech in context, a much different picture is painted.

  31. "So, in 2015, almost 2 full years from now, we will still be spending 430 BILLION dollars more than we bring in. Well, let's all sing hallelujah! We sure will be able to stop the debt from rising further if we get that accomplished! NOT! Yes, at some point, we must put a stop to all this NONSENSE!"

    Great. Detail the cuts you want to see, and the amount of taxes you want to see raised. And explain how your cuts and additional revenue won't hurt our fragile recovery.

    What programs will you cut from the 2015 budget to eliminate the $430 billion deficit, Mike?

  32. The GOP seems to favor immediate cuts that would likely send us into another recession.

    Take it from the CBO:

    "We and many other forecasters had warned that, if all of the fiscal tightening that was scheduled to occur at the end of 2012 had actually occurred, the economy probably would have fallen into a recession," the CBO reported.

    The CBO said that now that Congress had avoided most of the tax increases included in the fiscal cliff, the economy would grow by 1.5 to 1.75 percentage points more than it otherwise would have, avoiding the recession forecast for the first half of 2013.

    The deficit and debt are long-term issues that need to be addressed reasonably, and not while we're still struggling to reduce unemployment. The immediate cuts that the right seems to favor - but refuses to detail, of course - would have damaging effects on our economy.

  33. It is the job of the President and Congress to come up with proposed budgets. If I had the visibility that the President and members of Congress have on all the spending and all the programs, I somehow suspect I could come up with a combination of fraud reduction, elimination of duplicated programs, a streamlined tax system, etc, etc that would outperform anything I see being proposed today.

    Would there be nobody that was damaged by doing this? No, but then again, I live in the real world.

    Any of us that are honest realize that government always provides the worst possible scenario when any proposed reduction in spending or tax increases are proposed. Over time, we need to do a lot more of both if we want to do anything but nibble at the edges of this problem.


  34. People supportive of President Obama say the Republicans want to cut spending right now and that will damage our fragile recovery.

    People who don't support President Obama say that increased spending now will damage our fragile economy.

    I suspect that there is some truth in both views. It's too bad that our dysfunctional government cannot reach a compromise.


  35. Michael,

    By definition a "dysfunctional government" is incapable of reaching a compromise. If that is what we have it is only the logical consequence of having a dysfunctional electorate.

  36. thank you ksand99 for your thoughtful and obvious researched article. glad you were able to convince the moderator that you had something of value to share. Many of the posters have little or no idea what "deficit" mean. They only go by what they have been told by mostly the "bubble people." They easily forget that much of this deficit was caused by the fact 4 years ago America was in a deep fall on our way to a full blown DEPRESSION. We all know some of the real reason for this-- to name a couple-- Bank greed, two wars unpaided for, housing market collaspe, etc;: It is amazing how soon one forget what got us at this place in time. Solution-- If we could only convinces our Congrees to help create Jobs - the key word is HELP"---common sense tells us the deficit will gradually disappear. Stop whining and get busy contacting your federal legislator(s). We will only survive if we as the people" force our selfish legislators to listen to what we want instead of obeying their own self serving motives.

  37. I agree. I just get very tired of hearing from Americans supporting one party or the other... that the dysfunction is solely or even mostly caused by:

    a) The Republican Party
    b) The Democratic Party
    c) Conservatives
    d) Liberals

    The truth is that all of the above help cause the dysfunction by their belief that the opposite side is completely wrong and is the 'enemy' and that 'their' side is completely 'right' and has all the right answers.

    We really are getting what we deserve. It's too bad so many of us are so stupid.


  38. I think American voters are tired of people misleading with inaccurate, misleading quotes and dismissing facts.

    Here are the facts that the GOP does not want you to know:

    "Since the start of fiscal year 2011, President Barack Obama has signed into law approximately $2.4 trillion of deficit reduction for the years 2013 through 2022. Nearly three-quarters of that deficit reduction is in the form of spending cuts, while the remaining one-quarter comes from revenue increases. As a result of that deficit reduction, the projected rise in debt levels from today through 2022 has decreased by nearly 10 full percentage points of gross domestic product."

    "Over the subsequent several months, Congress engaged in a protracted debate over the looming debt limit. The result of that debate was a bill titled the Budget Control Act. The act--also known as the debt-limit deal--reduced spending again. It did so mainly by setting caps on the overall amount of discretionary resources that Congress could allocate each year for the next decade. These caps were set even lower than the just-enacted, inflation-adjusted 2011 levels. So after already cutting spending several times to the tune of more than $500 billion, the Budget Control Act cut spending again--this time by approximately $860 billion. Together, the fiscal year 2011 appropriations process and the Budget Control Act are responsible for nearly $1.5 trillion in discretionary spending cuts. This is a whopping 10.6 percent reduction from inflation-adjusted 2010 spending levels."

    "So where does all this deficit reduction leave us? Since the start of fiscal year 2011, Congress and the president have cut about $1.5 trillion in programmatic spending, raised about $630 billion in new revenue, and generated about $300 billion in interest savings, for a combined total of more than $2.4 trillion in deficit reduction. The result is a substantial cut in how much publicly held debt the country is expected to hold 10 years from now. Instead of reaching nearly 93 percent of GDP, debt is now projected to total about 83 percent of GDP--fully 10 points lower. And while that won't be enough to finally put the budget onto sustainable footing, it is a massive improvement. In fact, it's about two-thirds of the way toward stabilizing the debt-to-GDP ratio."

    This GOP myth that Obama has done "nothing" to address the deficit is a fantasy that is not borne out by the facts.

  39. Kevin,

    What is the source for your quotes above? They are meaningless without that.

  40. Thank you, Roger. My comments were removed because I used the same "fairy tales" construct proposed by Mike... the guy who just commented that Americans are "stupid."

    Reducing the annual deficit by 40% in three years is not "nibbling around the edges. This is quite representative of what many on the right do in order to create an argument. First propose that Obama has done nothing. When that fallacy is dispatched, they say that Obama hasn't done ENOUGH.

    The arguments are counter-intuitive. As you've noted, Roger, employment should be our #1 concern. The deficit is a medium-term problem, and the debt is a long-term concern. However so many of our fellow commenters would sacrifice more damage to a weak economy in service of reducing the deficit.

    Deficit reduction alone is not a plan to save our economy. Immediate deficit reduction, as proposed here by several commenters, would have an immediate, substantial negative impact on employment. Unemployment would climb, thus increasing spending on social net programs and further reducing tax revenues.

    The 'debt panic' narrative has gained a strong foothold with many on the right. They truly would cut off their nose to spite their face.

    In fact, the recent reductions in annual deficits was met with contracting GDP in the fourth quarter of last year. They violently demand less spending, then when that reduced spending is met with a contraction of GDP, they blame everything except for their own policies.

    What did Boehner exclaim at the end of 2011?

    "When you look at this final agreement that we came to with the White House, I got 98 percent of what I wanted. I'm pretty happy."

    Boehner was successful... he undermined the recovery.

  41. Michael all that is deserved at this time is AMEN. Until all of the factions you named above stop complaining and get involved by forcing their WILL on their elected representative, until then and on then nothing will change. I don't want the deficit forgotten , but what is more important at this time is JOB-JOBS- JOBS-. With jobs America can and will--quickly over come this man-made disaster. Bridges, schools and infra-structure jobs (pipe line-subways, electrical grids etc)are just some of the areas that would not be hard to begin,--- the problem once again is based purely on politics. We must Stop fighting each other and join forces to fight the common enemy. We need Government-otherwise only the strong and powerful will get what they need. Our Elected Representative have already decided what master they will serve, and it is certainly not you and I.

  42. O. want free pre-school, based on "need" I'm sure. Poor timing. Federal DHHS study shows $200 Billion wasted on Head Start--doesn't work much at all as they don't emphasize READING. Ditto the all-day K thing. And this thing about raising the minimum wage? Does he think that will lower the numbers of people applying for welfare benefits. Let's do the math: $14,500 for 1 of 2 adults working full time getting minimum wage--O's example had 2 parents with 2 kids. Add in $6-7K for Earned Income Credit and Additional EIC. Free utilities via LIHEA. Free food via EBT Food Stamps. Free K-12. Free Medicaid..... Let's see, that's about $30K a year for family of 4. OK it's not the Ritz but if all you can do is minimum wage work WHY do you have 2 kids?

  43. BEFORE the recent election, O. on "The View" said EVERYBODY'S taxes will go up. If taxes go up enough, there would be no increase in deficit spending. BUT, the point should be that we cannot sustain the current rate of deficit spending.

  44. A Google search on the phrase "Since the start of fiscal year 2011, President Barack Obama has signed into law approximately $2.4 trillion of deficit reduction" lists several sites that have posted the information that Kevin provided, but the original source appears to be this from The Center for American Progress:

    The pieces I have seen that quote from the original, such as the example given above which might be third or fourth hand, leave out much of the middle section of the original. It is worth reading the full original to get a better picture of what steps are being taken NOW to deal with/avoid the sequester and what the potential benefits/consequences might be.

    I strongly suggest reading the ORIGINAL article and not relying on partial quotes from it.

  45. Jeff,

    Thanks for posting the link. It would seem you posted that while I was looking it up for myself. One thing to note, while that is the original, there are several bloggers and other sites that have re-posted selected portions that leave out significant information.

    Overall, the original article is reasonably non-partisan but the second-, third- and fourth-hand accounts have applied a noticeable amount of spin.

  46. Fairy tale economics? Bin Laden spent about $500,000 to pull off 9/11 and in repsonse, the Fairy-tale-In-Chief spent about $4 trillion: $8 million US dollars for every $1 Al Qaeda dollar. 15 of the 19 9/11 Conspirators came from Saudi Arabia but Bush invades Iraq, from which NONE of the conspirators originated.

    This goes beyond a Fairy Tale and smack into Lunacyville, where the entire World gets Mooned in one act.

  47. Comment removed by moderator. Personal Attack

  48. It's kind of interesting that Conservatives are often portrayed as evil, spiteful and a host of nasty terms, but the people who have their comments removed for name calling are often the Progressives.

    If President Obama gets his initiatives passed and they don't add anything to the deficit, I will stop calling his promise a fairy tale.


  49. Chill, MC. No need to zip the descriptive language for PUBLIC FIGURES. Courts have long-ruled and it is widely accepted that one loses some rights such as privacy when one becomes a public figure. Think slander--you can say what you want about public figures (excepting threats to harm) but NOT about non-public individuals.
    As you know, Michael, I / we sacrifice detail and PC redundancies in the interest of succinctness and making our points rather than droning on degenerating into an indecipherable "logic."

  50. So, the moderator tosses comments made by Progressives because the 'truth' about conservatives makes the moderator squirm. I'll bet that assertion would be news to the moderator.

    No, the comments are tossed because they amount to ridicule and personal attacks on individual non public figures. The moderator is doing the job for which he or she is being paid.

    When someone won't admit what is obvious, it calls into question all the other assertions he or she makes.


  51. Fairy tale?

    Let's talk about real fairy tales: Once upon a time, there were supposed to be yellow cakes and Mobil WMD labs. So they sent soldiers to get them. Thousand died, including our own relatives and friends, and trillions of dollars wasted, plunging the country and the world into economic turmoil.

    No blame was placed on the perps, but the same people who believed in that fairy tale want to impeach the one who is trying his damndest to get the country back to its feet amidst their intransigence.

    Want more fairy tales? Rape does not make a woman pregnant. A fetus is an organ, Oh, I could enumerate more, but it is tiresome to even think about these people.


  52. Case in point on trying not to use inflamatory comments when referring to some posters. a comment currently being professed by The Speaker of the US House-- He stated in bold face that "The sequester" was caused solely by President Obama. He wants the American people to believe he had absolutely nothing to do with the sequester. Many bubble heads will swear that this statement is a divine truth. It is sometimes very difficult to avoid using extreme language when the "real truth" is well know by the majority of America. I beg the question -does he believe we are blind, stupid and ignorant? His comments today and in the past were even on the alleged fair and balanced tv station, so no one can say this was only posted on a so called liberal outlet.