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July 22, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

GOP puts politics ahead of our needs

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I wonder how many people realize how close they were to getting hit with a major tax increase.

If Congress hadn’t passed the Senate bill, which called for a permanent extension in the Bush tax cuts for the 98 percent of those making less than $250,000, most people would be hurting today. The holdup in passing this bill had been the Republican refusal to increase taxes on the 2 percent of American couples making more than $250,000. Finally, the Democrats compromised; in order to prevent tax increases across the board, the new tax increase is for those couples making over $450,000.

Even that didn’t appease House Republicans —151 of them voted against this bill, meaning they didn’t care if your taxes went up. Meanwhile, 85 Republicans joined with 172 Democrats to get the bill passed.

This refusal by Republicans to negotiate in good faith with President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats will continue. They are now vowing to go to the mat to block an increase in the federal debt ceiling, which would make the United States a deadbeat nation, unable to pay its bills. Republicans are putting politics before our nation’s needs.

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  1. The retired Richard Mundy must have missed the memo. Taxes did go up this year on most Americans

    "While Congress did act in a matter that will keep income taxes from rising on middle-America, in doing so they allowed a temporary reduction in the Social Security payroll tax that was enacted under President George W. Bush to expire. Extensions on that tax break have allowed Americans to hold onto more of their income during the last several years in lieu of sending it to cover the cost of the Social Security welfare program, financed by a 12.4 percent tax on wages up to $113,700. During 2011 and 2012, Bush-era tax cuts kept the share of US workers' at only 4.2 percent, with employers responsible for the rest. That reduction expired on Wednesday, however, and with no action taken by Congress it will increase to its old standard.
    Starting immediately, US workers will lose 6.2 percent of their paychecks in order to fund Social Security. The Associated Press says this will cost a typical American family earning $50,000 annually around $1,000 in 2013."

    US taxes to go up in 2013 regardless of 'fiscal cliff' deal
    http://rt.com/usa/news/fiscal-cliff-tax-...

  2. GOP and Boehner acted in good faith form the start, putting tax increases and increases in tax revenues on the table THE DAY AFTER THE ELECTION. President Obama did not act in good faith on the fiscal cliff negotiations. Everytime Boehner and Reid came to an agreement, and Reid presented to Obama, Obama upped the stakes. This is a negotiating tactic, Chicago style politics, that Obama uses BEHIND CLOSED DOORS. Even Reid threw up his hands and said enough. Telling Obama he will have to come to the table in the future and negotiate with the GOP leadership face to face. As you know, Boehner said the very same. Sounds like an agreement to me.
    CarmineD

  3. There are a couple of things Americans should take away from the fiscal cliff negotiations and outcome.

    The first is that even at 250 K, the tax increases proposed would not have made much of a difference in the deficits and the debt. At 450 K, they make even less difference.

    The second is that when the legislation is examined closely, instead of just dealing with the Bush Tax rates for individual Americans, a large number of tax breaks for favored industries were included at the last moment, effectively spending all the extra revenue and more that the higher taxes might produce.

    Taken together, this validates my contention that the GOP isn't interested in using higher taxes to help balance the budget and pay down the debt... because to do so on all Americans would be highly unpopular. It also validates my contention that Democrats are not interested in reducing spending to help balance the budget and pay down the debt...again because it would be highly unpopular.

    This same stupid game will be played out again shortly over raising the debt ceiling.

    It is laughable but sad that letter writers here and many Americans continue to believe and state that one of these parties has the interests of the nation as their 'first' priority'. WHAT A BUNCH OF NONSENSE!

    Michael

  4. How can 'any' of you contend that 'your' party is willing to address the deficits and debt when...

    Baseline budgeting stays in place, where every federal agencies budget is automatically slated in increase by some percentage each year, and if that % is decreased, it is called a 'cut' in spending.

    The Glass Steagall act is not re-authorized.

    All the government studies about the waste, fraud and duplication in government just sit on a shelf and are never acted upon.

    Our byzantine income tax code is not re-written to be much less complex.

    There are thousands of things that our government could do to begin to bring spending and revenue into balance and not only are they not done, they are not even 'proposed'. So much for the argument made by so many of you that the 'other' side is the problem.

    Michael

  5. Does the GOP stand for the interests of 98% of us or 2% of us? The GOP's recent actions answer any remaining question on their priorities.

    More importantly the argument boils down to money versus people. Those that think money should be the most important consideration or those that feel people should be the most important consideration. As long as we view each of these concerns as mutually exclusive, we guarantee no one will get what they want.

  6. It's all about political power. That's it in a nutshell.

    The modern day Tea/Republican Party is about a radical and extreme ideology. They would willingly destroy America's economy, reducing us down to third world status, all in order to scrape up the ashes and be in charge of what's left over.

    That is why for every election cycle, I vote straight Democratic Party tickets.

    Because I not only want to prevent their diabolical and warped desires and needs, but I also want to utterly DESTROY them.

    That's the only thing they understand.

    Even though they are doing a good job at incinerating their entire political party because of internal squabbling, I am going to do my best to assist their endeavors as much as I can.

    I'm glad to see the people of Nevada, as well as the nation, are waking up to their nonsense and joining with me.

    KAH BLOOEY!

    That's the only thing I want to hear in the future from the Tea/Republican Party. When they explode. Blasted to smithereens, not only from the voters, but from within.

    KAH BLOOEY!

    It would be music to my ears.....

  7. Jeff,

    Thanks, and I am fine. Mr. Mundy's letters are all the same... blame the GOP... and I do blame them. I agree with much of what Mr. Mundy says about the GOP.

    The issue I have is that Mr. Mundy, like most others, believes that one party or the other is THE problem. They are 50 % correct, no matter which side they support.

    We are in a financial position where 'any' viable solution, whether it be on the revenue or spending side or a combination of both, involve much pain and will be highly unpopular.

    Both parties and all office holders of all parties, depend on being popular with the public and inflicting no pain on the public.

    We've allowed elected office to become a lucrative 'career' and have a system where to keep your career going, you need to trade legislation for campaign cash and support provided by special interests and you cannot do unpopular things or inflict any pain on the public.

    Most Americans still believe that one party or the other somehow ignores the realities I stated above and actually places the best interests of American and its people first.

    A fair and honest look tells one that just cannot be and isn't so.

    I dismiss most comments I read here because they follow Mr. Mundy's track. Blame one side and ignore all the reality that is out there to see.

    Michael

  8. Ya gotta love the left. Always pleased as punch to take from others what they want but are unwilling to pay for. Tax the other guy, that's their tired old song. Greedy, grubby and indolent, their method is to conjure up the dead Saul Alinsky's Commie advice to divide & conquer. Gotta admit, what with the guy with the Cheshire Cat & empty rhetoric grin at the helm, they've been pulling the wool over lots & lots of folks eyes. And, when the true bill for their ride on the gravy train comes due, they'll still be trying to pass the buck to the honest, hardworking & productive among us.

  9. YOUR need are YOUR problem, not the government's problem, not my problem, not taxpayers' problem.

  10. Let's briefly look at the situation from a statistical perspective. You have roughly 9700 people a day reaching age 65 and signing up for Medicare and Social Security. In addition you have tens of thousands more signing up for Medicaid and various other entitlements.

    The government is going to get stuck with the lion share of the $150 trillion in medical spending that going to occur over the next 40 years.

    Not only are you going to need massive tax increases to pay for this the entire tax code is going to have to be revamped and were going to have to dramatically reduce medical spending. The tax code was never set up to pay bills like the ones that are coming due.

    The good news is healthcare inflation is at its lowest level in 40 years. Let's hope it stays that way!

    People are getting exactly what they want. Massive entitlements combined with rock-bottom taxes. Within 20 years this situation will change dramatically.

  11. Roslenda says our needs are our problem and not the governments. Tell that to the 30,000 people a day that are signing up for the above programs. Two thirds of the people in this country can't lay their hands on a grand but million dollar hospital bills are becoming commonplace. Some of the new cancer drugs, especially the ones that deal with tumor suppression can easily cost $500,000 or more according to a report that I read from the leading cancer specialist. If Roslenda thinks that Americans are equipped to pay these bills she's living in La la land.

    The deficits and unfunded liabilities are all about medical care. Cut medical costs and you eliminate the bulk of these problems.

  12. Mundy's position is utter nonsense. When your constituents elect you primarily for the purpose of holding the line on tax increases and slashing expenditures, and you vote that way, that's representative government at its best. I get sick and tired of hearing the rediculous posts on line here that criticize these people for doing the job they were sent to Washington to do. This nation is divided,like it or not. Nobody's going to get everything they want--get used to it. Personally I have every confidence that at the end of the day(END)that the entitlement and expenditure decisions will be made. People are angry and fed up with this entire mess.

  13. Freeman

    You misconstrue my message. It is not about the rich versus everybody else, it is about valuing wealth above other values.

    I reject your insinuation that I have no right to an opinion that effects the working class. I have a more lengthly experience in the working class than you and, for most of those years, paid taxes at a higher rates than today's without whining about it. My current status does not disqualify me from caring about others who remain in the working class as well as the best interests of our country.

    Since you are obviously searching my comments you might notice that I've often stated that shared sacrifice will be necessary to solve our fiscal problems. Hence, the source of my irritation with the GOP favoritism toward the financial interests of the wealthy and their resistance and yours to share in any of that sacrifice. The same goes for the apparent disinterest in the working class demonstrated by the GOP in the House of Representatives.

  14. Jim Weber,

    I don't have much argument with your contention that when the GOP fights against any tax increases for the wealthy, they come across as caring only about the wealthy.

    The issue I have with many progressive leaning Americans is their reluctance to accept the fact that when progressives advocate for more and more spending and are not willing to tax anyone but the wealthy to 'try' to pay for the spending, they are setting us all up for the middle class to get hammered when the whole house of cards finally collapses.

    We can't tax the rich enough to escape where we are. There are not enough of them and they don't have enough money. The middle class (because there are so many of us) have the money and we either tax the middle class much more or we find ways to reduce spending.

    Most progressives want to reduce defense spending and as a financial conservative, I am OK with that, but again, there isn't enough to cut there to solve the problem. The GOP won't raise taxes on anyone; Progressives will only raise taxes on the wealthy and not by that much and neither party is willing to cut enough government spending to make a real difference.

    That is the real problem. Part of the blame can certainly be laid at the feet of the GOP, but Progressives are at fault as well.

    Michael

  15. Comment removed by moderator. Name Calling

  16. El Lobo,

    Do you honestly believe that the GOP should agree with and support 100 % of what the Democrats want to do? I would never want the Democrats to support 100 % of what the GOP wanted.

    Maybe I am wrong but you and others on both sides give the impression that you think the side you support is 100 % correct and that everything they want to do is in the best interests of the nation.

    You cannot believe that....can you?????

    Michael

  17. Motorsports,

    Gabby Giffords and her husband are gun owners and gun rights advocates. I think they do support common sense gun laws and I say good for them. I think they just disagree with the NRA's stand of 'no more guns laws, period'.

    Michael

  18. Motorsports,

    From what I have read, they do not want to do anything to the NRA. They are just advocating for some kind of an assault weapons ban or restriction and tighter gun registration. Those seem sensible positions to me.

    Michael

  19. Let's create a new "fairness tax". This tax would be the most fair according to the left's definition of "fair"...

    Anyone who publicly supported Obama and voted for him in 2012 will be taxed an extra 50% on their earnings including unemployment. Since they voted for this fraud, it is only "fair" that they should pay for all his greatness.

    Doing this, one of 2 things would happen:
    Suddenly everyone forgets who they voted for. or we will have the balanced budget the Messiah had promised us 5 years ago.

  20. What happened to the tapes of the ever-popular President (JFK)? Something about not asking your country to carry you but find something YOU CAN DO FOR YOUR COUNTRY. Enough already. We've bankrupted ourselves with spending and spending. So let's par back on everything.