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Will there be a budget/debt ceiling deal?

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The President and members of congress are working, sort of, to reach an agreement on raising the debt ceiling by August 2. If they don't, the country could default on it's obligations -- everything from military pay to social security. Democrats are pushing for a tax hike, but only on the top 2 percent in terms of wealth. Republicans are pushing for as much budget cutting as they can get. Talks have been testy in recent weeks with GOP leaders walking out at one point.
The questions are:
Will there be a deal?
What price do we all pay if there isn't one?
Is this the right time to play political chicken? After all this issue has come up in the past and it was passed with no real fanfare. Why the big push now?

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127 Comments

What the?, your data is just plain wrong.

You need to learn how to research better. The break off for the half of Americans who pay no taxes is way over $16k, but I will letbyou do at least some work and get the data yourself (hint: remember credits).

I agree 100% that the Government has GOT to find a way to control the spending. That is both a Democrat and a Republican problem ..... everyone says they want to cut but no one wants to cut anything that might help them get re-elected. Too many lobbiests and special interests with their hands in our pockets.

Logical arguments have to include the elimination of loop holes for million/billion dollar corporations as well as serious spending cuts .... those spending cuts need to start at the top (time for Congress and the rest to live the way they expect the rest of us too!), then the size of so many programs that are bloated with waste, usually again at the top, and the last should be to programs that benefit seniors and those who are truly in need. I'm all for cutting welfare where ever it can be cut without putting so many people in the streets that we all have MORE problems than we have already, but I think you lose more than you gain when you cut services for the elderly (making Social Security/Medicare start at 68 or even 70 is a more realistic solution than slicing it up and leaving people who will genuinely need it without), or take away medical care or unemployment. Those things sound great in concept, but in reality it's dangerous, and benefits no one. If for no other reason, the fact that people with nothing, buy nothing, The moral and ethical arguments are truly compelling as well, but it doesn't seem those things mean much to people anymore.

So you want the rich to pay more taxes because you think they should be paying their fair share. You go on about why that should be but I do not see in your comment anywhere that you address the root cause of our financial problems. It is not the rich are not paying their fair share. It is precisely because government (politicians) does not control spending in any way, shape or form.

And the conserowackos, or as S&P calls them, the Republicans in the House. Read it again yourself.

My understanding is that those who don't pay federal income taxes make $16,000/year or less. So if 47% of Americans don't pay federal income tax, that means 47% of Americans make $16,000/year or less. That's a statement on how poverty is rising in America, not a statement about our tax system.

"So bye, bye Miss American Pie" "Drove my chevy to the levee but the levee was dry"

"singing this "ll be the day" the DOLLAR had died.

Appeal2reason,

You posted a regular talking point of the far left:

"The fight is also about the scope of tax breaks and loopholes for the ultra rich... tax breaks that are not available to anyone except them."

Since you obviously feel strongly on this, could you please share with the rest of us some examples of these alleged tax breaks that bare not available to the rest of us?

Also, you note the "poor" don't pay taxes----this is correct and is a recent phenomenon. When half then workers have zero skin in the game you have a structural problem.

The reason Warren Buffett says don't coddle billionaires is that he realizes the problem when all the money is stuck at the top. Read what Nobel Prize winner Joseph Stiglitz has to say on the subject. http://www.vanityfair.com/society/features/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105
Those are the people that need to be taxed. not Naperville physicians making $250,000. and fairly, just roll back to where it was under Clinton. That's totally fair. the economy needs a boost. Think of it as a game of Monopoly. What happens when one player has all the money. It's game over.

This little excerpt kinda says it all:

". Those who make $1 million accounted for about 0.2% of all tax returns but paid 20.4% of income taxes in 2009. Those with adjusted gross income above $200,000 a year were just under 3% of tax filers but paid 50.1% of the $866 billion in total personal income taxes. This means the top 3% paid more than the bottom 97%. Yet the 3% are the people that President Obama claims don't pay their fair share"

So, why is it so many of you think the higher income aren't paying "..their fair share"?

Dems want to spend more and tax the rich more to pay for it.
Repubs want to spend less and tax the rich less.

The fight is all about money. The fight is all about how big gov should be. The fight is all about the scope and role of the fed gov. The fight is also about the scope of tax breaks and loopholes for the ultra rich... tax breaks that are not available to anyone except them.

And the last battleground is how much to tax the rich because the poor don't pay taxes and they have squeezed what is left of the middle class until there jsut isn't anything left. No one is talking about charging the poor more in taxes, not even a token amount that would give them the pride to say they are doing their part to help society. No one is talking about cutting taxes for the middle class or restoring some of the tax breaks we used to enjoy. Since the middle class has taken it on the chin over the last couple of decades in terms of increased taxes along with the loss of several tax deductions it is probably fair that there should be a corresponding amount of tax pain felt by the ultra rich with some kind of corresponding loss of deductions or tax breaks.

Just like there is no cap on real estate taxes for the ultra rich the income tax paid by this same group isn't exactly going to kill them considering how much disposable income they have.

I'm going to split my vote and say I'm for less total government, less government spending, a balanced budget with no debt, and I'm for the ultra rich paying a fairer share of income taxes.... not necessarily a level of tax pain felt by the middle class but certainly a level of tax they can well afford to pay and still not feel any think close to the financial pain felt by most Americans. Maybe they won't be able to afford that second Bentley this year if you know what I mean.

Also interesting is while the libs were cheering Buffet on when he complained about the S&P downgrade, he failed to not was it widely reported he owns I believe about 8% or the competing rating company Moodys.

An example of rates versus income n the past:

>During World War I, the top rate was 77% and applied to those making over $16millionper year in2007 dollars!

>In 1939, the top rate was 75% applied to incomes above $75 million per year in 2007 dollars).

Now, if our President and the horde of uber liberals demanding other peoples money for them to spend decided to quit spinning the definition of "rich" and put it back to these old versions, I fully believe there would be a lot less push back.

I would start by pointing out being a millionaire or billionaire means absolutely nothing to me when discussing INCOME taxes as income taxes are taxes on income. Wealth, on the other hand, is money that has already been through
The taxing process and has been saved.

Now, as far as fed tax percent goes --- I know that is a current liberal talking point, but just throwing it out with no context is disingenuous.

I will start with some simple data points:

1)the top earners are  paying a larger portion, and a larger total dollar amount, than at any time in modern fed tax history.  This is important because you cannot spend a percent, but you can spend a dollar.

2)in Buffett's case, it is written (I would not know firsthand) that much of his income comes from dividends.  Old Warren is taxed on these dividends at about 15%. I understand that the left has several talking points about how dividends. S/b  taxed as ordinary income and I think this is in the Obamacare implementation. HOWEVER, I would like to point out that dividend snare already taxed at  about 35% at the corporate level, thus dividends are currently really taxed at 50% when you combine the corporate and individual taxes. I think that is more than high enough.

3)the spin about current taxes to the upper earners being the lowest ever is pure spin, and incorrect from an economic viewpoint.  The earlier rates allowed many, many deductions that are no longer allowed, and the current rates have deductions disappearing quickly with higher income. The result is that it is awfully close to a wash.

4)when the higher rates were  effect, almost all working Americans paid some fed income taxes. That number now is about 50%.

5)finally (for now), we as a nation are discussing/arguing millionairesand billionaires, etc,paying more taxes, but I have a newsflash for all--- our President talks the same talk, but his WALK is that $200k per year is "rich" and should be taxed more. He and his socialist followers use past tax rates to rationalize this slippery trick of words. However, if you look back at the higher rates of the past on these highest wage-earners, you will find that these highest rates applied to those making a hell of a lot more than $200k in current dollars.

Thus, I have no problem given current law with billionaire having a lower fed tax rate than me on any given year.

Interesting data I found on who exactly does pay the most income taxes.

According to this site: http://ntu.org/tax-basics/who-pays-income-taxes.html

It was the first site that came up, and I've not looked at who the National taxpayers union is, but their numbers sound like what I've heard before. According to them, the top 1% of taxpayers pay 38% of all income taxes and the top 5% pay over 58% of all income taxes.

So while there are tax breaks and "loopholes" this income group still pays a majority of the taxes. And Anon, I'm not sure what you mean when you say that "you or I shouldn't have to pay a higher tax rate than Warren Buffet"? What rate are you paying?

There seems to be some belief that the top 1% or 5% of earners have achieved this only through unethical, or illegal means - they stepped over everyone, and earned it on the backs of the poor workers. I'm paraphrasing, but just because someone has money doesn't make them evil. Ever since Gore keps using the "top 1%" line in his election bid this phrase has been used over and over.

Answer this then Cheesehead. What benefit is there to the top 1% controlling more than 50% of the nations assets? Who benefits from this aside from that top 1%? If they earn it that's great, but why the loop holes and tax breaks etc... etc.... Why exactly should you or I pay a higher tax rate than someone like Warren Buffett (choose another example if you don't like this particular billionaire).

a\little exerise you might find iteresting - look at BerkshiremHathaway's financial performance pre and post Sarbox.

Interesting.

OVERSPENDING is a HUGE problem, it just isn't the ONLY problem - and sadly way too many who don't see that are out in the streets walking around (and blogging) pretending they know it all. Not much hope for any of us while this is the prevailing attitude.

I don't think that because Buffet is wealthy he has some greater economic sense than someone who is not and therefore his opinions can only be correct. Warren Buffet has some classic failures and Berkshire has lost alot of money at times over the years. That is not to say he is some fool either. But why is it that I cannot recall him holding reckless spending by government accountable for the financial mess in this country rather than repeating constantly that wealthy people should pay more OF WHAT THEY EARN so that it can be WASTED by reckless spending? Why is he not telling Obama stop spending money we do not have? Why does he tell Obama that spending TARP money to create jobs to the tune of over $100,000 per job does not make economic sense? Why does he not tell Obama to put together a budget after more than two years? His emphasis should be on curtailing spending by the government rather than government pitting us against each other. Government is the problem not some guy like the crazy Kennedy kid who flies around the country in his Lear jet complaining about how we are killing mother earth with green house gas. LOL.

this country's problems are simple: OVERSPENDING.

to not understand this is to exhibit ignorance at its highest levels. those who don't obey need to sit down and try, oh please try, to put the number $14 trillion into perspective you can understand' than compare that to allU.S.income. if you still dont get it, than I truly hope you have not procreated.

Buffett is a complete hack and hypocrite.

He talks to taxes and wealth as if he trusts the government with it, but as usual he lies and misleads.

Buffett has already committed his 50 billion to the Gates Foundation, NOT to the taxman. if paying taxes is so good for us all, why is he avoiding it?

Answer, anyone?

Anonymous, you might want to actually get some subject matter competence (as in taxes andiron) before you insult other sand embarass yourself with your lack of knowledge :)

Wow Glock, you apparently know more about economics than Warren Buffett! You must be very proud of yourself (as far as I can see, you always are).

Take a look at the facts on where the majority of the nations wealth is and who controls it. Look at which group is growing during the current crisis - take a good look at what has (or hasn't) happen with the middle class in terms of growth since the late 70's. Once you've reviewed these FACTS, then listen to Warren Buffett.

"Warren Buffett is the third wealthiest person in the world, and he's got a message for Washington: "My friends and I have been coddled long enough by a billionaire-friendly Congress. It's time for our government to get serious about shared sacrifice."

This isn't what the Tea Party or the GOP wants you to hear, but facts is facts as they say. Don't worry, you'll catch up one of these days if you every figure out how to open your mind to reality.

Funneling wealth to the top 1%? Put the crack pipe down. People earn their wealth, only the government funnels it anywhere. And as history proves correct, government takes the wealth from those who earn and flushes it down the toliet. Man, you got to get your head out of your arse.

I've never seen an intelligent comment from a GOP self proclaimed cheesehead. That string continues.

Label it as Liberal or Conservative, but the funneling of all US wealth to the top 1% with no regard for anyone else is the source of the majority of this countries problems today. Leadership has to be able to stand up and tell the mega wealthy that the free ride is over. Earn as much as you can, that's great - but actually earn it, don't do it on the backs of the poor and/or middle class.

Taking control away from the Unions in places like Wisconsin is one thing - change is needed, complete dismantling is not. Funneling the money FROM the workers, TO the Koch brothers and their ilk, is not going to solve anyone's problems, it will make everyone (exception being that top 1% and the politicians they own) less able to thrive and support any economy.

The extremists in the GOP have only one goal, and that is to defeat Obama. That's politics, I get that - but the fact that they are willing to do it at the expense of every working person in this country is shameful.

Apparently what the? Cannot even read.

If you really read the statement, it is crystal clear that S&P puts the blame squarely on both the size of total debt AND the inability of the U.S. Leadership to address the total debt issue.


In your liberal world, you THINK government does not run its labor unions but follow the money. The reality is government funds its labor unions. And labor unions fund in particular your goofy Democrat party. That is a peculiar relationship is it not? That is something Scott Walker is changing in WI. And again, as last week proved the voters are begining to see this and found that it is not a financial relationship to their benefit. When the taxpayers are clamoring for the government to spend responsibly and for example the unionized teachers are chanting "raise our taxes" in Springfield last year, do you not see the alliance between who is running the government and who is running the IEA in this case? Politicians work for the union interests and other organized constituents who cough up money to their campaigns. In retrun, the policticians grant them beneft contracts for wages, health care and retirement benefits to name a few. Then the union leaders set the prevailing unionized labor rates by trade, submit them to the politicians who enact those standards into law. But this is the bottom line. If you think for every dollar the federal government owes in obligations, borrowing $0.42 on the dollar to pay them is good government, then you are indeed a crazy lady. Finally, I want to weigh in on Michelle Bachmann before the lefty smear campaign gets in high gear. What a breath of fresh air she is. She has more accomplishments in her life than this idiot you voted for in the Oval Office now. And frankly, if we can elect an incompetent like Obama to save face and show our friends we are not racist, then we can certianly vote for a woman to show our friends we are feminists. The rising tide that is going to fire Obama is something that all the nut jobs and all of Obamas men will not be able to stop. She may not be elected but make no mistake about it, Obama will be fired in 2012.

Sure it's the conservowackos, S&P said so in their 8-page statement. I think you should vote in more of them, make a suicide pact and mix up the Kool-Aid the next time the debt ceiling has to be raised! Oh, wait, Grover N. already did that!

BTW, what happened in Wisconsin is a repudiation (I commend you for not using "refudiation") of unions, not government. Government doesn't run unions, unions have been strangling the government, and that's the problem. Taxpayers are fed up with union workers taking so much and delivering so little in return. Big government does not mean good government, but nonexistent government is not good either. It's a balance, Glock, not one or the other.

Spoken like a true 10-year-old.

What the? must have been looking in the mirror with that "bitter" comment, Lars.

Here is a link to a rant by Dillon Ratigan, who has reported on both sides of the issues with CNBC and MSNBC...I think it covers what Mr.A.P is talking about:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/09/dylan-ratigan-rant-debt-negotiations_n_922855.html

So let's do something about it.

Now we are at about $3trillion in stock market losses. It is not conservowackos. It is about our personal economic wealth being intentionally taken from us by the big spending politicians with Obama at the wheel. What happened in Wisconsin yesterday is a repudiation to big government. People with the exception of you are getting the idea that big government is not good government and tea party patriots who believe that prosperity that comes from a market driven economy rather than a government controlled and over taxed economy works best for the most people. The next election cycle cannot come fast enough. We need to get this loser out of the White House and his so called experts need to go with him.

Bitter much?

Latest political scorecard:

1 - adult Wisconsin voters  and countrywide fiscal conservatives

0 - juvenile union hacks and fuzzy thinking liberals everywhere

What? Care to explain what you mean by "research"?

The FACTS are simple: non union labor was working the fundraiser.

Next question.

Der she blows!  Rising from the depths of the uber liberal sea of know nothing, what the? Pipes in with the latest liberal talking point.

Hey der, yep, it is the tea fault, uh huh.  If dey only had kept der mouths shut, no one would know we are spending way too much.  If not fer Dem teas, S&P would never have known, either. 

Yep! Shooting da messenger is definitely then besets reaction.

Nice lemming, wt?.  Way to hit der talking points (tho I'm disappointed it took ya this long).

It seems like we've got another good misdirected rage week in ConservoWorld. Why don't you brainiacs vote in some more Tea Party Congress members, or better yet, a Tea Party President, and let them take the entire American economy down and our country with it. That should save Russia, China, North Korea and the Taliban the trouble. Yep, that's what true American patriots do!

Do your research, and don't be bitter.

Many here and elsewhere have been complaining about President Obama, as though he is the cause of the problems in this country. These economic problems didn't get this serious in the last year and a half. Like a terrible cancer, they started off small and nearly imperceptible, only to get worse when symptoms eventually surfaced, but were then ignored until it was too late. Don't blame Obama; blame the incompetent incumbents on both sides of the aisle who have served multiple terms and who have put the country in this position! None of us ever personally introduced a bill in Congress or ever cast a vote on one that was introduced. Legislators do that -- our "representatives" in the House and Senate who, when you email them, send you those canned, form letter responses instead of answering your questions. Sure they're busy, but so am I. Yet those incumbents had the time to enact the laws that set the economic policies in place that fed their pet projects and ran the deficit up so high that the national debt may never be paid off, surely not in our lifetimes. The current members of Congress are the perfect poster children for TERM LIMITS! Simple arithmetic, like balancing a budget, is very obviously beyond their capabilities. They should not be holding public office, and will be keeping that in mind as I look forward to casting my votes in the next election. One last thought -- blame your neighbors who don't even take the time to vote. They may be the most guilty of all.

Does anyone know where Obama is today?

Is he on vacation?

Is he golfing?

Is he on his bus tour?

Is he on tv taking the blame for the helicopter that was shot down (like he took credit for UBL)?

Is he at the whitehouse trying to fix this economic mess he has crated?

Hmmmmm?

How about that  hypocrite known as President Obama?

he has an alleged birthday party in Chicago, uses it to really fundraiser  at $35k a pop so he can "rep the people",  but to top it off he uses only non union labor to serve the party!!!

Does anyone REALLY wonder why the AC was broke and it hit 92 degrees in the  party?

It is estimated that the stock market lost 1.1 trillion dollars on Thursday when it closed more than 500pts down. Now What the ? and all the other Obama supporters can cheer the incompetent, university trained idiot all they want. The reality is HIS failures as a leader are costing this country the wealth and prosperity of its citizens. I am highly agitated to see my conservative managed 401K down in excess of 5% in five days. When he takes his so called jobs bus tour, I am going to meet up with it and be among what I suppose will be many protesting this foolish President. The only person who is happy is Jimmy Carter right now. His presidency is no longer the most failed one in the last 60 years. Obama wins in a landslide.

You all can thank me for getting the debt ceiling deal finished. I threatened to sue everyone in Washngton DC, from President Obama all the way down to the janitors at the White house if this deal didnt get done. I WANT MY SOCIAL SECURITY CHECK!!

One of the questions posed by the Naperville Sun editors who started this topic nearly a month ago on July 10th was what price do we all pay if there isn't a debt deal? Well, now there is a debt deal, and in the past month the Dow Jones has so far dropped 9.53%, with additional carnage in the market predicted for today (8/5/11). What price do we pay? Well, 9.53% of the total value of an entire lifetime of retirement savings would be gone if, for whatever hypothetical reason, you needed to cash out today (that's $9,530 for every $100,000 you've saved for retirement throughout your entire life!). This is bi-partisan blame. Current legislators in both major political parties have now proven their incompetence at dealing with the economic issues of this country, and once again the middle class workers will both take the hit and pay the bill.

Uh........ the market is reacting to the sudden relaization that there are no cuts in the debt ceiling agreement, just a POTENTIAL to limit the increase from an additional $10 trillion to about $8.5 trillion.

Seeing the projection of our debt increasing to over $23 trillion even AFTER the deal has staggered the markets.

The Democrat economics of spend, spend, spend is still in vogue and will still tank the country.

So I guess we got a "deal' after all. wow and the market is tanking anyway. Well i guess when the realization sinks in that GOP economics of cut cut cut are back in vogue the market tanks.

Vote only for Democrats, the USA will go broke.

Vote only for Republicans, the USA will go broke.

I am laughing myself all the way to the poor house because of Democrats and Republicans

Well, well...our leaders really screwing things up in the market. Note that the last 100 point drop in the DOW came after Obama made it clear that "everything must be on the table"...followed by more bashing of the rich, oil companes, people who fly in corporate jets, etc. Does he have any idea what damage he is doing to the confidence of businessmen everywhere. Combine this with the holding up the Boeing's newly built plant in SC over a union issue in Washington. What kind of message does that give to ALL CEOs? Answer: Do not built a plant in the US - period. No conception of image portrayed, unless the image is a cynical lefty who hates all successful business people.

Even the head of his American Jobs Council is moving jobs and infrastructure to China. See GE CEO plans via this link:

http://www.thetradingreport.com/2011/07/29/ge-ceo-jeffrey-immelt-the-head-of-obama%e2%80%99s-jobs-council-is-moving-jobs-and-economic-infrastructure-to-china-at-a-blistering-pace/

You think Ronald Reagan would let this happen on his watch? I would have that punk up against the wall in the White House (the reason I could never be president). I voted for Obama, and I still think he was better than McCain-Palin would have been (can you imagine?). However, Obama will not get my vote next time if the Republicans have a normal person running, or an Independent candidate emerges from the chaos - more likely this election than ever before, because the Republicans may run a lunatic.

Each day Obama looks more like Jimmy Carter. And he will shortly have the same economy, unless he can roll the red carpet out to business, and restore confidence. His speach today, tells me that will not be happening. He now owns it all, because he is the President.

He also took on too much with Obama Care, another failed decision, the non-stimulus stimulus to pay off cronies, unions for the 2008 campaign, and now the total failure of a grand compromise to simplify our tax code, re-patriate $2 trillion in foreign cash for US companies to invest here, and lowering the corporate tax rate in conjunction with closing loopholes (he should start with that free "traitor" Immelt, CEO of GE, a company near bankruptcy and surviving only at the tit of our US governments loan guarantees through 2012 (bet you did not know about that).

I heard defense was cut but not the big 3 of Medicare, Medicaid and SS.

Well, since you can never prove 6 months (or whatever)later what caused what, a prudent investor does measure the immediate reactions to an event to help measure the event.

The only truly good news would be a serious attempt at spending controls, and this would by definition have to include social security, defense, and real Medicare ( ie recipients, not providers).

direstraits,

No prudent investor cares one hoot what the market is doing today or tomorrow. Only a gambler cares about today and tomorrow. Goodness knows the knee jerk reactions and pendulum swings in the markets are more about the fear crazed emotions of gamblers trying to cover their stupidity, greed, and egos than it has ever been a controlled, measured response to a factual situation.

Lets see where the market is in 6 months or a year as a direct result of this compromise. If it's still down, as a direct result of these actions, then maybe there may be something to discuss.

Let's see: Boehner and Reid are declaring victory; the Tea Party is claiming Boehner caved, the Progressives are claiming Obama did.

Sounds like a compromise to me!

4 those who think the issue is a deal and not the total debt, just look at the market's reaction to this alleged "great bipartisan deal".

Down big time!

In all do respect, I would prefer "hard numbers" rather than your "guess". And I am not saying that at all to disrepect you. Rather, it reflects a problem with all governments where leaders mislead others on the numbers.

Take Social Security. Beneficiaries have not received increases over the last two years. Have the number of "net new retirees" increased by 8%? That seems a bit extreme.

Everyone claims that the government should balance their books like people do. First, they need to keep the books. With low inflation and interest rates, the government should be taking advantage of the current environment to control costs. If the increases are 8% and they are saving money in some areas, that means that other areas are increasing even more.

To be clear on my proposal, cut spending back to 2008 levels (reverse the "stimulus") and only allow entitlements to increase by CPI (Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, etc). If Medicare expenses are increasing at 8%, then cut the reimbursements to hospitals and doctors by 5% so the increases stay at 3%. Force people to spend less.

This is really out of control. It makes the increases of the City of Naperville and the local school districts look reasonable!!!!

Enough asked:

Why not a freeze to 2008 levels and growth for Social security at CPI. Control Medicare as well.?

My guess is that a significant chunk of the increase in expenditures for Social Security and Medicare will be due to increases in the number of people receiving benefits under these programs.

The reason we don't have a debt deal is obvious:

Liberal Democrats!

They are so intent on keeping the 60 year old social reengineering projects exactly as they were 60 years ago (when social security kicked in 5 years AFTER the expected death of an American male!) that they refuse to see the bankruptcy before their eyes!

(They turned down the house bill without reading it (hey! Sounds like Obamacare!)
Why read anything that doesn't follow in goose-step to your dogma?
n
Obama is all words, no action. He may or may not have said he would compromise, but as soon as the liberal buddies in the Senate spoke up, he breeched attempts at compromise and ran for the red hills of liberaldom. Obama is too weak to negotiate as he cannot even stand up to the Senate.

He sits down and cries like a little girl. Wah!

Meanwhile, middleclass America suffers from Obama inaction and Pelosi/Reid socialism.

The most revealing portion of this deficit debate is that Federal spending, already bloated by Obama, is scheduled to grow by 8% per year for the next ten years. Compound 8% growth.

Why not a freeze to 2008 levels and growth for Social security at CPI. Control Medicare as well.

These numbers are more than preposdurous, they are obscene!!!!! We cannot sustain this. So lets admit this and move on.

There is no reason we should be increasing spending by 8% annually. NONE.

Connie Mack and Rand Paul are at least 80% right on this topic. Hold the line until the budget can allow for more spending.

The reason we won't have debt deal iis plain. Republicans, especially the Tea Party Republicans, have so corrupted the legislative process that it is impossible to get anything done. To say that Obama has not compromised is pure folly. He offered $3 trillion in cuts - not good enough. He offered to cut Social Security and Medicare - not good enough. Boehner and McConnel have both said publicly it is there jo to stop the president and make sure he is a one termer. how on Earth can you work with people like these? This no compromise approach is ruinous. that's why no other country on Earth gets as hamstrung as we do. You Can't change thee U. s. constitution in two days.

The U.S. senate is pitiful!!!!

They don't even read the House bill, they just refusemto acknowledge it's existence.

They, the Dem Senate, is going to crash the economy with their partisan ignorance as they make all their moves based on getting Obama reelected. They don't care about our bills or lives or retirements.

Speaking of fear mongering, the DEMs wrote the book on that tactic.

Just look at them on this debt issue ----- they keep stroking the fires of default, yet they also refuse to create any solutions (they just keep saying no to the only actual proposals, those from the house).

The Senate has also refused t pass a budget for about 800 days.

It is clear that their plans all along since they got blistered in the last election cycle is to create this defat situation because they are trying to recreate the Clinton/Newt standoff. as always, the DEMS don't even have anew idea when it comes to political infighting and they must reuse a decade and a half old strategy!

Of course when you are led by a slug like Reid, imagination is not really an available skill set.

Unfortunately for you liberal partisan hacks, you are not even aware that the Democrat party is the largest recipient of extravagant donations of wealth from the rich!

This includes Wall Street, the law profession, executives and businesses, etc.

The data is out there ----- just go look it up. of course, that would not play well into your meaningless dogma and would get in the way of your attempts to create divisiveness via class warfare!

Well which is it, omg99?

U state the fireman and teacher together making $250k are rich (I said they were well-off), then you state the doctor or executive with a .single salary of $250K is just well off (which it is)

Even if we ignore the inconsistency, you offer no explanation, data, etc.to determine rich versus well off. I expected more. Of course, everything can get caught up in the definitions, yes?

I will submit that a yearly salary, by itself, has nothing to do with being rich, as my definition for rich is based on accumulated wealth (which certainly is easier with certain circumstances, such as high income over a period of years, low spending,no kids, etc). I will further state that "rich", tome, implies little fear of losing a job as you would know that even without it you can pay all the bills and not be forced to take a "survival" job to meet the basic requirements.

So, if you take a family of 4 living in, say, NYC or Lincoln Park, and making $250k per year they most certainly are NOT rich!

Problem is this - the majority of us ARE working, and are working hard - but the way things are it doesn't matter how hard you work - unless you are already one of the GOP chosen few, no one cares what happens to you. The top 1% of this nation is THRIVING - making money at a record pace - and that's fine, except for the fact that they are thriving at the expense of everyone else.

You preach getting the government out of everything - I couldn't agree with you more, but let's start by getting it OUT of the business of supporting loopholes and tax cuts for those who are reaping profits in the multi millions. They can make as much money as they can, fine - but why should my family have to go without basics so that they can hold on to more? Let's get OUT of the war business - we don't need to police or rebuild the world. What exactly do you think happens to those people who truly NEED the safety net some of these programs provide? Where do you think they should go? You are ready to let them all starve in the streets so that the Wall Street execs can get their bonus's and send millions overseas to avoid paying taxes on the riches they earn? I am all for everyone having the opportunity to earn everything they can, but I will say AGAIN and AGAIN, they should do that without taking from those who have nothing. NO ONE is supporting fraud or in favor of giving a lifestyle to those who aren't willing to earn it - but be careful who you throw out in an effort to punish them, because you are throwing out some people (more these days than ever before) who ARE working, who ARE willing to work, who don't mind one bit doing their fair share. You abandon those people in the name of your "conservative principles" and you are doing irreparable harm to a HUGE segment of the population, and not only do those people lose, but ultimately you will too. Who exactly do you believe keeps this economy running when things are good and everyone, rich AND poor, has the opportunity to succeed or fail?

The GOP is protecting their base by selling fear to those who don't know better. They should be ashamed of themselves - and maybe they would be if it wasn't such a successful strategy. No matter what happens to your or I, they want to beat Obama, they want their POWER back - and they don't care who they destroy along the way to get it.

Both parties are guilty of supporting incredible waste for personal gain - for that reason alone, the vast majority of those who are involved in the current mess should be sent packing. One of the best ideas out there is to pass a law whereby the legislators have to live under the same circumstances they impose on the rest of us. They shouldn't get free healthcare unless everyone else has access to the same quality at the same cost - they shouldn't get a free ride into retirement when the majority of the people who elected them are looking at working until they fall off the chair or living in abject poverty. Make these people live with the same hopes and fears the people who elect them deal with everyday, and we might lose the ego driven self serving motivation that is so common in both parties.

Not to make excuses for Bush2, but the Democrats in the last two years of his office did excessively increase taxes. And Barney Frank protected his buddies at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. I would be curious if the Bush deficit would be broken out between the first six years and the last two years.

And Bush should have shut down the governement in 2006. Too high of a budget, then spend nothing. He tried to play ball with the Democrats and lost.

And why not strive for a better life style? We work hard, so we should have some reward. If you want a more lock step government, move to China. They have a perfect left leaning government, join them.

Why shouldn't America strive to be the best? Do you think the French or Germans want to live in the past? No way. Even the old Eastern Bloc is improving, striving to have a life style similar to ours.

Everything the Federal government does is a failure, the Post Office, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, total failures.

Yes, I agree both parties are to blame. I am surprised the Republicans don't blame both houses of Congress (who were Dems) for all the spending that the Dems blame on Bush for. Congress is responsible for funding right? Why have the Dems done such a great job sticking Bush with big-spending, but the Reps have no come back? In reality, probably Clinton, Bush 2 and Obama, are moderates and big spenders.

Both sides may just want "the power" to pay back friends, waste money, and self-enrich themselves either in office or lay groundwork for retirement from office to lobbying, corporate boards, Fannie/Freddie posts, or directors of non-profit organizations. That's what the ethics look like to me. That also means the grand deal will be a tiny smoke and mirrors nothingness.

Anyway, back to the $250k per year is not rich. It is rich, and I am leaving out the stats. You teachers and fireman may find out the hard way, just how rich that is, when jobs get lost eventually, or pensions not paid. The fact that someone would think a $250k family income of a fireman and teacher is not rich, shows you the problem we really are facing today. It is what it is until it isn't.

I go further to say an executive or doctor making $250K as a single income is also very well off. I believe that puts you in the top 5%-10% of Americans - not bad at all. I am sure you think this is too low - until that amount is gone. It is what it is until it isn't.

We have collectively built up this aura of wealth and status, that should be shaken out of us. How could this happen? Did your dad fight in WWII for this, or was it for a "good paying job", a tiny house, and maybe a car. My dad would probably be in shock if he saw where I live today. So we either shake this out-of-touch sense of worth and value today, or we will have it shaken out of us later.

We are going back to the basics, and I hope you do the same soon.

Fine and dandy - I'm not happy with Obama's speech either, but you can't blame dems for raising this and give your GOP buddies a pass. BOTH parties know the cap has to be raised - too late to NOT raise it now - the money has been spent already (over the past several decades, so neither party get's to act like they aren't to blame).

The thing here is - there has to be a solution, and that solution needs to be passed by a bunch of reasonable adults - not a bunch of three year olds who point fingers about whose fault it all is/was (it is BOTH PARTIES FAULTS - BOTH SIDES MADE THE MESS, BOTH SIDES HAVE TO FIX IT).

Close the loop holes for those who support campaigns but send jobs overseas and make millions and more in profits. They will cry, but guess what, they can afford it and they will still find a way to make money and survive. CUT the spending - there is more wasted money going out the door in this government than anyone can even begin to see. Bad news for the politicians, this isn't just the money someone else has spent, but the crud they benefit from as well.

Toss out each and every politician that has been in office at this point. Not one of them deserves the lifetime benefits they are so dead set on seeing that none of the people get.

STOP falling into the trap they are so enjoying all of you wallowing in. BLAME is a waste of time - they are all to blame - work for a solution - not a re-election (and yes, the majority leader is running for his party much as he would like you to think that is simply a democratic president thing).

If attitudes don't change, those of politicians and those of the rest of us, this country is shot - it won't be Obama's fault as so many are hoping - it will be the fault of ALL OF THEM - Obama, the Tea Party, the GOP, the Democrats .... all of them. Fault wont matter, the result will.

So you think that more government spending (or as Obama now calls it "investment") will help the economy?

Look how these local governments waste money, Atlanta Schools are the poster child.

Obama is the biggest hypocrite. He can no longer keep his stories straight. He opposed the debt limit increase as a Senator. He said that the deficits were growing under Bush. OK, if that is bad , FIX IT. Instead the ultimate hypocrite INCREASES THEM MORE.

Change you can believe in. All the way to ruin!!!

Our President's speech last night was his worst ever (and seems to just be a campaign speech).

Anyone who watched the speech and the "response" last night should be totally clear on one thing. The Republicans are a bunch of 2 year olds that believe we are all stupid! Course, some bloggers here will prove them absolutely correct.

omg99:

"Note that the Dems were in control of both houses of Congress at the time when they rescued both quasi govt agenecies from bankruptcy."

And there was a Republican President who pioneered and signed TARP and Congressional Republicans such as John Boehner who CRIED on the House floor begging Congress to pass TARP and save the country.

As I have said before:

"Fannie Mae (Federal National Mortgage Association) and Freddie Mac (Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation) are government-sponsored enterprises (GSE) with a mandate to expand affordable housing in the U.S. and provide liquidity and stability to the U.S. housing and mortgage markets. Created in 1938 at the request of President Franklin Roosevelt, Fannie Mae was chartered by Congress in 1968 as a private, shareholder-owned company. Freddie Mac was chartered by Congress in 1970"

Both these programs worked for DECADES with no problems. What changed? The repeal of Glass-Steagall during the Clinton Admin, for one. Then:

"Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac's problems had their beginnings in the U.S. real estate bubble of the early 2000s. Fueled by low interest rates and relaxed lending standards, U.S. home prices increased at rates that were well above the historical average in the 2001-2006 period.

But in 2004, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) directed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to purchase more loans made to subprime borrowers. This would expand the market for subprime loans and also enable the two GSEs to fulfill their affordable housing mandate in the U.S."

http://www.investopedia.com/articles/economics/09/fannie-mae-and-freddie-mac-saved.asp#axzz1TBbLaVLc

In 2004, Republicans controlled BOTH houses of Congress. Expanding subprime loans was part of G. W. Bush's "ownership society" platform. The Bush administration was up to it's neck in what Fannie and Freddie were doing.

As usual, all these discussions fall along partisan lines. Reps blame Dems and their social programs for all of society's ills, especially the last two years of the Bush administration when Dems retook Congress, ignoring or glossing over the role Republican leadership played in the preceding 6 years when they controlled the Congress. After all, the housing bubble formed and burst under G. W. Bush's watch, and Bush's "ownership society" helped inflate that bubble.

I'm certain there will be a deal. These guys are holding the best deal either side could possibly get, but nobody wants to own the outcomes of not having a solution. The endgame would not rest well for either side when it comes to the voting populous.

Appeal2reason, it is just so darn CUTE the way you just keep posting those liberal talking points!

U broke it u own it --- from Durbin's mouth, to your ears, to your finger tips.

What a lemming!

If having your response posted is that important to you, then compose it in a word processing program and then cut and paste it here. That way you will still have it on your computer if a glitch occurs.

Guy on another blog raised this point: The rich (ad that, i guess includes anonymous) by their steadfast refusal to accept a teeny tiny tax increase, will see their wealth tank by way more now that the markets are going south. Congrats A, psyche and all you others. Never back down, not even in the face of a moving train. you broke it. you own it.

Still no deal and now even the wall Street boys are starting to sweat. I'm glad Boehner is so concerned about the Asian markets and wants a deal so they don't tank in a few hours. He probably has a lot invested in China. it's obvious he has nothing invested here. A bowl of jello? Really? Oh well, he go his sound bite and I'm sure he and all his buddies stood around high fiving. That's all they're good at.

Had a nice, well-thought-out response to give about why 250k fireman/teacher/doctor/executive pay IS rich...then hit preview and it disappeared. No backtrack found. Goodbye for now Sun - what a waste of time and energy.

Anonymous, you underestimate marketing skills of today. The loaf of bread will not go to $10 - it will be cut to a fourth of the size, and inflation will be declared under control - "transitory".

This is just the next Boy Who Cried Wolf bail out for Wall Street, a lagging indicator of our economy.

The Federal Government is already bankrupt, the longer they pretend that we aren't bankrupt, the more debt they run up that we are all going to pay for with increasing pain.

As the money printing kicks into full gear, look for Wiemar Germany hyperinflation aka $10 a gallon gas and $10 loaves of bread. The Arabs aren't stupid when it comes to math and all grain is sold on the world market. You'll be able to reminisce with the grandchildren about when you had steak more than once a month.

If there is no new borrowing; the Republicrats will have to make some hard decisions to balance the books.

Sooner is better than later.

Enough,

The realm irony is that Sweden has basically abandoned the Scandi model! Look at their current tax rates, yet our current Dem strata wants to move to that model.

It failed, thus Sweden adapted.

Now, what is thaty saying about doing thes ame thing and expecting different resuts?

Here is some real irony.

YOU ARE STATING WHAT REPUBLICANS HAVE BEEN ADVOCATING FOR THE LAST TEN YEARS.

Huh? All of this Obama, Peolisi, Reid nonsense about taxing the rich to fund the deficit and a larger socialist state they envision simply does not work. If you taxed the rich (over $250,000 in income) 100%, you don't have enough money. Ultimately there needs to be a middle class tax increase to fund the current level of government spending let alone the "investments" that these guys want (i.e. socialism).

Saying the above, tax policies should be openly and honestly evaluated, not simply swept under the rug as is the current practice. I have my issues.

1. Tax rates on the wealthy. Yes, prior to Reagan, the tax rates on the wealthiest Americans were 70 to 90%. On the other hand, there were numerous tax loopholes and noncompliance resulting in the real taxes paid being substantially lower. We need an honest recap of rates before policy is made.

2. Concept of income tax. For all people, the tax was only to be made AFTER everyday life costs were paid. Specifically, people were alllowed to deduct medical costs (it use to be an individual's responsibilty!!!), all local taxes, all interest, etc. The concept is that you paid taxes on the net amount of funds you hold. And the tax rates were higher FOR ALL PEOPLE (like Psyche said, even the lowest incomes paid 10 to 20% income tax rates).

The elimination of these deductions in return for lower tax rates by Reagan effectively resulted in little or no benefit to the middel class. And since these costs for the most part are not optional, did the middle class benefit at all from the Reagan tax rates?

3. Let's drop all corporate taxes and replace the tax with a 10% VAT including capital improvements. This would raise a comparable amount of money, but companies would be able to expense capital costs immediately. The government benefits ONLY when the company recovers its costs.

4. Economic growth and lower marginal rates. Even though the wealthy were able to lower their effective tax rates, the high marginal rates did discourage additional economic activity. In short, it put a cap on the growth.

Lower marginal rates for corporations and individuals generally spurs economic activity. But do all such revenue do so? Clearly, capital gains do. What about interest income and dividends? Take our main man Barry O. He had $2 to $4 million in income from his books. Now I think he earned it, with a $850 million boost from campaign contributers. Again, he feels he did not.

My tax question. Should interest and dividend income be taxed at lower rates? Now he did declare this income, in contrast to some previous posters, as Schedule C income. So he did pay 35% plus an additional 2.9% FICA (Medicare) tax on these funds. When you add in the state taxes, he paid almost 40% on this revenue. That he generated. Had he earned this as a dividend, he would have paid 15%.

My take, as long as the income is "salary" type (W-2 or Schedule C), it is taxed fairly. The issue becomes as sub S corporation or a LLC. These vehicles exist to escape the double taxation of corporate income. If the corporate income tax was eliminated, there would be no incentive to form these types of corporations (a tax loophole). But any money reappropriated as salary or dividends should be taxed at a higher rate than 15%. These funds are not being used to create jobs, but to support a personal life style. The balance is to figure out how to not to overtax investment in capital as either interest or equity.

I could go on, but the above is an adult conversation. This is not what we are seeing in Washington. So until we see some real debate and process, our country unfortunately is doomed. I close on a comment from an economist about the "wonderful" Scandanavian "sociialist" states. They encountered the economic turbulance the US is experiencing in the 90's. They had to scale back their ambitious "safety net" programs, although they did not abandon them. They have still not recovered. Unemployment remains above the levels before their economic downturn. Constant drift.

To not be too partisan, the current Democratic party aspires to a Scandanavian model for government and society. Unfortunately, as hard as peple try, it does not work. The only reason those countries are surviving is the remnants of capitalism and a highly educated populous.

Enough for now!!!

A lot of gamesmanship between the President and Congress, but the longer this goes on, the less likely there will be much impact. However, it smells like the middle class is going to get more taxes or less write-offs (same impact). The reason for the compromise is the Congress and the President are all upper income now, and find it easy to rationalize higher taxes for the middle class. Oh, and the $6 trillion in cuts, those will be smoke and mirrors to get to the next election - like the budget approval was saving 300 billion, then 100B, then 30b, but ended up costing us taxpayers.

Dems will approve, because they never turn down new taxes on anything, and especially now that they may not pay more taxes as wealthy people - high salary, plus relatives like spouses on corporate and non-profit organizations - they ARE the rich today (see #1 and #2 below). "New Revenue - yeah! We can do our good work for our people because we know what's best...and provide wothless training, education for the poor, so our buddies in for-profit education can make massive bonuses, stick the public with any defaults - 90% of the loans - and donate to our campaigns....urrr...ummm ...oh...we mean jobs! jobs! jobs! big oil bad! Unions and ehtanol good! -- oh!, and election year?...so War good - look tough huh?"

The Reps will like the deal because the rich will not have their taxes raised - oh, maybe if they make $50 million a year, maybe that's OK. You see that is right in the Reps wheel-house - 1) payback corporatie executives, organizations and "think" tanks (who are all people now thanks to the recent Supreme Court ruling - yes, like you and me) who donate larger dollars to their campaigns (forget the people, who just do the electing, especially now that they are in office and thus, can raise the huge bucks - by the way this goes for both Dems and Reps); 2) their own taxes will not go up (hey - they/sposues are making the giant coin now, so why not - makes them feel the status - the stroke of the ego - their special too). "Tax breaks for the we rich...ummm..urr..I mean..ah....small business and the middle class....oh and jobs, jobs, jobs!....did I say jobs jobs jobs? Unions and Ethanol bad! War/Free Trade good!"

You see, everybody can win here! Except the American middle class - the only strong middle class in the entire world. Use it people, use it.

Something to watch when you get the opportunity: NY City financial collapse in the 1970s - on CNBC this week. One hour show. Maybe available online - I don't know. A lot of similarities to today, except the US Government eventually stepped in to help; however, who is really going to step in and help the USA if the same thing hapens at the Federal level, even though we have spilled the blood of millions of our own citizens to help them out? - France? China? Germany?

Sadly, you can't expect reason from those who have concrete surrounding the "ideas" that have been planted in their heads.

appealt2reason lacks the ability to see outside his biased frame of reference as a pure and simple liberal. Of course, from reading these blogs over the years I can see that the far eft liberal segment of our society is somewhat brain dead when it comes to understanding fiscal issues.

You need to read all the words,not just those that fit your mental model.

You use your liberal bias to only address the words that fit into your talking point.

Many (myself included) understand the economics of the issue and can see through our own bias to understand that our country has a spending crisis ---- pure and simple. You cannot fix a spending crisis by taxing more (you can temporarily fix the debt ceiling, but the true crisis remains).

If the elected idiots could fix the spending crisis (say,cut REAL spending by 6-8 trillion over 10 years, and by real I do not mean smaller increases), than there are few that would be vehemently against fixing the tax code.

I don't know what i expected from bloggers here but judging by the recent posts I'm really not surprised. Whining about high taxes is just par for the course. Of course the rich pay more taxes. Taxes heere, and everywhere else are based on amount of income earned and amount of property owned. The disparity in taxes paid by the top 2%, the top20% or the top whatever is all the proof any rational person needs to see there is a growing problem. That of too much wealth in the hands of too few Before you scream socialism please read the article by Joseph Stiglizt in Vanity Fair. http://www.vanityfair.com/society/features/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105
Stiglitzm, a Nobel prize winner in economics. describes how rhe disparity between rich and poor is disastrous in the long run for a country. In the U.S. the top one percent earn 25 percent of the income and control 40 percent of the wealth. Their income is up 18 percent over the past 25 years while the middle class has seen its income fall. You guys can moan all you want about taxes but the simple truth is this: When the rich are taxed more the country had a surplus and the economy thrived. When the taxes are cut for the top earners the economy sputters, as it did for the past 10 years. What makes this country hum is economic activity. and with companies sitting on nearly two trillion dollars in cash, refusing to hire, expand or move forward, the economy is going to sit stil.. sometimes taxes just have to be raised. but only here do we have people married to the fantasy that lower taxes create more revenue. they don't. According to taxpolictcenter.org tax receipts fell after the Bush tax cut. Look it up for yourself. http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/taxfacts/displayafact.cfm?Docid=200
meanwhile outlays kept going up. The bad policies of tax cuts and rampant spending caused the problem we see today. Republicans who raised debt ceiling 6 times under Bush without mentioning their own huge deficits are now just sticking it to a Democratic president and to the country as a whole.

I agree that $250k a year is well off, but $250k is not rich. In reading oyur example on the doctors, I would suggest you get a better understanding of both current tax law and the proposals that have been floated by our President.

Many, many deductions have gone the way of the dodo bird as part of the Reagan and the Bush tax cuts. If you listen closely to the test balloons from the President, you will hear that even more deductions will go the same way (thus increasing taxes paid regardless of the marginal rate). In fact, the interest deduction for mortgages, has one foot on a banana peel and the other wavering over a ravine as we speak.

The example of the fireman/teacher family still applies. Anything they make over $250k is not rich, period. As a family makes more, they lose more and more deductions. Where will it stop? Neither you nor I know, now do we?

Your dismissal of the doctor couple in your example is a little condescending as you attempt to speak for them. To you, it is just a few thousand extra dollars, but to them it is still a huge tax bill while 50% of the working population pays either zero taxes or, in many cases, has negative taxes (meaning they get a credit for taxes never even paid!).

You ask the question, “Do you think it is outrageous that a couple who makes $320K should face an income tax increase of $400???”.

My answer is that I think it is outrageous that a couple making $320K should be asked to pay such a high percentage of the income taxes that go for services we all enjoy regardless of income level, especially when half the people pay none or get a credit. Do you know how much a couple really pays on that $320K? On the $70k over $250K? Do you understand the rates at all?

Do you know they will have an increase of about 2% points due to lost deductions at $320K, that they pay social security of 12,4% on the first 106K, and 2,9% for medicare, that in Illinois they pay 5% (and up to 10.5% if they live in California?), that the elimination of the Bush tax cuts in 2010 will up their marginal rate to 39%?

Look, I understand we have a difference of philosophy here. I see spending as the single, ONLY thing we must address immediately or we will fail as a nation. I “feel” that you think the answer is in higher taxes for some segment of society you deem to be “rich” . I doubt we will ever see eye-to-eye on this.

These are not reasons, though, for you to be nasty about it or close-minded to alternative arguments. It is not only “right wingers” who think we have a spending crisis!

Now, let’s address your canard about the years 1941-1946 as proof that you can spend yourself out of a recession/depression. I don’t remember saying you can’t (and yu can’t! Now I said it!), but if that was directed at me, let me respond with a Newsflash --- those were war years!

Back it up a little, and let’s look at the New Deal, shall we? That is the epitome of non-war spending excess and represents the golden age, the mecca, of your liberal thinking.

Now, you should note (read carefully here, as I am posting from memory and not from a book right now, so my numbers will be a bit loose and rounded) that the unemployment rate during the New Deal fluctuated between a high of over 35% and a low of a little over 20% (which jumped up again to over 30% and than WWII started).

In other words, ses, spending did nothing to help the real issue of the day, which was unemployment. However, getting into a war did wonders for the unemployment rate as so many of our relatives went off to war (of course, the downside was all the maiming and deaths).

The entire field of econ you refer to is a failed field that has been proven wrong over and over again. Look at Obamanomics, look at Europe (old),look at the New Deal.

As the economist said, “Sure, it works in practice, but will it work in theory?”

Lotta this to respond to, southeast side.

Let me start with your oh-so-knowing liberal ranting about Republicans, NOTW, and Fox news --- please do NOT pretend to either know me or what I watch.

Are you really so damn lazy that you cannot look something up yourself if you have doubts? Have you fallen so low that you cannot even challenge your own mind and mental modes with even a modicum of light labor?

Have you?

I assume you are referring to my 7/11 post, so I will fill in some more for the clinically lazy like yourself:

First, the words of Morgenthau, a key architect of FDR’s New Deal – He wrote these words in his diary AND, I believe, He spoke these words on May 9, 1939. in an appearance in Washington before Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee during the seventh year of FDR’s New Deal programs to combat the rampant unemployment of the Great Depression. He also said ““I want to see this country prosperous. I want to see people get a job. I want to see people get enough to eat. We have never made good on our promises.”

Second, the Bush tax cut comment ---- “…tax revenues were $786 billion higher in 2007 ($2.568 trillion) than they were in 2003 ($1.782 trillion), the biggest four-year increase in U.S. history”. These are the valid numbers, but you can go find the source yourself.

Third, I don’t know what to tell you on this one. The numbers are published regularly and all you have to do is read the federal budget. It is simple math and I can’t really tell you much more.

Fourth, I again don’t know what else to tell you but the data is there. The tax rates were in existence, and you can review them yourself. Are you questioning the fact that even low income people paid SOME taxes, that the lowest rates were around 20-22%?

Fifth, re:JFK,s tax cuts to 70% and 14% from 91% and 20%---- resulted in tax revenue collections that rose to 8% of GDP from 7.7% of GDP.

Sixth, Reagan’s cuts again yielded a larger tax revenue to the feds to 8.3% of GDP from 8% of GDP.

Please, all those who want to raise taxes, here is my suggestion. Each of you send a check to your favorite US government department, stating that it be spent according to your suggestion.

The US $ will collapse, if spending is not reigned in. Taxes if raised, will never cover the costs of government.

Omg99,

Nice adds!!!!!

In reference to:
gr8d84f8 | July 15, 2011 8:46 AM | Reply
Those interested in the Fannie-Freddie effect on the meltdown might also be interested in a new book on the subject by Gretchen Morgenson, a business reporter and commentator for the New York Times, and Josh Rosner, a financial analyst, called “Reckless Endangerment”. Their basic conclusion is clear and concise: Fannie Mae was not a “marginal” player, but the actual SOURCE of the decline in mortgage underwriting standards that eventually caused the financial system meltdown in America. They do a good job of proving Fannie led, rather than followed, Wall Street in the area of risky mortgage lending. Peter Wallison has written on this and the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission (FCIC) report. He lays out a compelling case showing the FCIC “papered over” Fannie & Freddie by ignoring key data and actually not interviewing the most key people at these institutions during the run-up to the failure. He is acute in pointing out that the FCIC ignored the key data, which led to the Frank-Dodd act whose sponsors former Sen. Chris Dodd and former House Financial Services Committee Chair Barney Frank, were the principal supporters and political protectors of Fannie & Freddie. Pretty comfy, huh?
====
To add a part not said...Bill Clinton saw to it that Franklin Delano Raines (FDR#2), became CEO of Fannie Mae. He was touted as the first black CEO of a "fortune 500" company. Unfortunately, other than the fact that a quasi government agency should never be traded in a market nor qualify for measurement in the fortune 500, Mr. Raines was a corrupt individual from day one, pushing accounting frauds, and turning Fannie Mae into more a buyer of bad mortgages versus provider of good mortgages - helping take the mortgage mess into hyperdrive. That is part of socialized risk-absorbing strategy of our government, so private individuals, including politicians, can self-enrich themselves. Privitized profits and socialized risk (US citizens payoff any downside of reckless commerce).

The net result, as is so often these days seen in corporations, was short-term financial results and massive bonuses (FDR#2 made about $20 million per year at Fannie Mae). FDR#2 resigned in disgrace, but only paid back about $3 million in settlements of over $100 million made - no jail, no bankruptcy, no political pain for the he or the Dems - the big supporters of Fannie Mae - mainly so they can self-enrich themselves on the backs of you/we citizens, getting special deals, and often moving into executive positions (where the big money gets made) after lobbying for a few years post elected office. Sweet deal.

Note that the Dems were in control of both houses of Congress at the time when they rescued both quasi govt agenecies from bankruptcy. Although, I am confident Republicans probably got special deals as well - the main reason the American public never hears about the real scams. In addition, FDR#2 used a special favors "club" or lobby called "Friends of Mozilo" (no joke, Mozilo is the ex head of Countrywide bank, a key palyer in the mortgage mess - I can't even dream this up). Senator Dodd of Dodd-Frank Bill supposedly "getting Wall Street under control once and for all" (yeah Dems!), got a discount loan from Countrywide. Senators can also openly own stock in companies they are regulating in committee, their spouese serve on boards of major corporations, and get compensated handsomely.

By the way, maybe a half-dozen long-standing regulations (if that - most made after/because of the Great Depression) caused most of the financial meltdown. However, none of these have been put back on. "We the People" get thousands of pages of regulatory garbage, and often page 2000, reverses the tough regulation on page one. It looks good to somebody, that our politicians are actually doing something, but they actually just wish to get on with the money-making game again ASAP. That means getting re-elected.

Fannie Mae (and Freddie Mac) was backed by the full faith and credit of the US Gov't - you and me, and thus, they removed the risk from greedy banks/brokers by insuring the bad mortgages they bought through the back door. All we ever hear is that Fannie Mae made few bad loans, but they bought many times that in bad loans. The net result, as is so often these days seen in corporations, was short-term financial results and massive bonuses (example - FDR#2). These people make big oil executives look like choir boys. The total cost of the mortgage meltdown was over $6 trillion. Guess who is slowly paying off that mess - you and me via flooding the market with capital, and depreciating the US Dollar to the point where unbeknownst to citizens their wealth may get cut in half. Smoke and mirrors to bail out politicians, their families, their friends, big bankers and wall street. Not a single banker is in jail today. The SEC is a joke of self-regulation by Wall Street.

So I strongly suggest that you stop pointing fingers to and fro at Dem and Rep parties - as the parties want you to do, while they quietly do nothing until the next election, so they can start all over again, with self-enrichment at the cost of our society. Repeat -- there is really no difference between the parties! It is all about getting power for self-enrichment purposes.

Go independent, and vote for independents - the only salvation of the America you once knew. Throw every incumbent out in every election for the next 10 years, until we get people who really care about America, and not themselves or their party over "We The People".


$250k a year is really well off. Half that is pretty well off.

The beauty of marginal tax rates is that they only apply "marginally" - that is, if rates are raised on income over $250K, the increased rate is only on income OVER $250k.

a teacher and a fireman (who works o.t.) can easily hit $250k per year. Let's say they live in a town liken, say, Naperville, and have 3 kids.


For the example of a teacher and fireman making $250K with 3 kids - While it cannot "easily" be done, I will concede that with enough overtime it might be possible. That said - because of interest and dependent deductions, their taxable income is likely not nearly $250K. Nowhere close. They couldn't have those kids or any mortgage interest, and no retirement saving plan or anything. You would need to up over $300 to get there, that is really not possible.

So lets make an example of 2 doctors married to each other - each making $160K - after their deductions, netting a taxable income of $260K. The proposed increase ( from 35 to 39%) would only apply to that income over $250K. 4% increase in tax on that $10K is $400.

Do you think it is outrageous that a couple who makes $320K should face an income tax increase of $400??? I think they would yawn over it.

Me and all my neighbors will go broke in the meantime.

Really? paying 4% more on taxable income over $250K will make you go broke?

Every piece of data shows that in practice you cannot spend your way out of a recession\depression.

Really? How do you explain the recovery in 1941-1946?? Wasn't that a huge stimulus plan? Didn't we go from a depressed economy to a roaring one by spending like crazy and putting pepole to work? You right wingers have very short memories and a painful lack of historical knowledge. In fact, the entire field of economics shows that you CAN spend your way out of a recession. It's called Keynesian economics - google it.

Psyche puts statistics out but no links to back them up. Republican spin indeed!! Maybe it belongs in News Of The World, or Fox News.

You are correct ---- easily was the wrong word (I was typing on the train and the intent was to convey that what many would view as "middle class workers"). My bad.

However, a 50 year old fireman married to a 50 year old teacher here in Naperville can/does hit the limit [ the highest paid firefighters in this metro area earned $91,680 or more per year] and it is normal for veteran firemen to get their pick of o.t.


As to A2R, sorry you are such a bitter,angst-ridden, biased person who likes to jump to conclusions :)

I guess since anonymous and his familly ar ok the rest of us can go scratch. congrats man.
i guess there is no getting through to you about how much wrong the GOP has done and all the pain, angst and worry they are causing now. To them, and to you too i guess, this is all just a big game. it's not about doing the right thing, but about winning the damn game. just laugh at the loser, in fact revel in his pain WE WIN HAH TAKE THAT YOU COMMIE LIBERAL.

a teacher and a fireman (who works o.t.) can easily hit $250k per year. Let's say they live in a town liken, say, Naperville, and have 3 kids.

.
.
id like to see proof of that... easily?

I would seriously suggest you "run the numbers" if you really think $250k per year is rich.

a teacher and a fireman (who works o.t.) can easily hit $250k per year. Let's say they live in a town liken, say, Naperville, and have 3 kids.

Now, with that info, trying to afford housing, gasoline, food (especially under the skyrocketing costs under the Obama ploicies) and saving for college and a rainy day, do you REALLY think that is trich?

Now, try the samecalcs while assuming the family lives inNYC!!!!

No, I am absolutely NOT worries about any of my family and friends on social security.

Why?

Well, assuming ANONE has the gonads and strength to actually get changes through, NONE of them apply to anyone either currently on social security or within 10 years of getting social security!

You might want to quit listening to to far left scare tactics and actually read the proposals yourself. Paul Ryan (ire the GOP) has been pretty clear on this IF you read and listen.

What DOES scare me is Obama's comment on Friday about "hoping" he can protect current social security recipients.

UR wrong ---- Obama has stated many times that the taxes kick in at $250k.

In fact, if U read the Obamacare bill you will see that figure used liberally (pun intended)

i feel that 250k a year is rich but the taxes Obama suggested raising are on the top earning bracket. those don't kick in until an individual earnes more than $372,000 and its ONLY on the $372 k and up.
Very few people reach that level after deductions and adjustments,
but seriously, anonymous aren't you worried at all. do you not have any people in your family on social Security.? And how about what happens if we default. are you prepared for $8 a gallon gas? are you ready for the DOW to drop to 6,000 or lower? Even if you have a lot of money it will be worth far less with the value of the dollar plunging with no confidence behind it. and this is all for political gain. The tea party is out now warning Republicans not to make a deal. i was at the rally in Naperville in 2009. Half the people there were in their 60s and 70s. Do they not understand what is going to happen to them? Is the blind hatred for Obama so strong that some are willing to blow up the nation's economy in the hope that he will be saddled with the blame? Politics is on thing but this is suicide.

Enough:

Fannie Mae was established in 1938 during the Great Depression as part of the New Deal. Freddie Mac was established in 1970. Both programs worked exactly as they should have UNTIL the repeal of Glass-Steagall during the Clinton Administration, and that opened the door to all the shenanigans leading up the housing bubble.

As another post mentioned, the FCIC “papered over” Fannie & Freddie by ignoring key data and actually not interviewing the most key people at these institutions during the run-up to the failure. Moody's gave Freddie Mac's preferred stock an investment grade rating of A1 until August 22, 2008 when Warren Buffett said publicly that both Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae had tried to attract him and others. Moody's changed the credit rating on that day to Baa3, the lowest investment grade credit rating.

Fannie and Freddie ran as intended for DECADES until the law was changed allowing the private sector to bastardize the programs for personal gain. That's what the author meant when he said that blaming it all on Fannie and Freddie let's the banking sector off the hook for fraud and criminal behavior.

Hey, why don't the people on this blog offer some defintioins so we can see if we are all arguing the same subject matter.

As an example, several have posted things about Obama and the Dems being golden because they wasnt to "tax the rich" and the GOP doesn't.

Define rich, please. As I understand it, Obama says making $250k per year is rich, period.

Does ANYONE out there agree/disagree with that defintion?

Those interested in the Fannie-Freddie effect on the meltdown might also be interested in a new book on the subject by Gretchen Morgenson, a business reporter and commentator for the New York Times, and Josh Rosner, a financial analyst, called “Reckless Endangerment”.


Their basic conclusion is clear and concise: Fannie Mae was not a “marginal” player, but the actual SOURCE of the decline in mortgage underwriting standards that eventually caused the financial system meltdown in America. They do a good job of proving Fannie led, rather than followed, Wall Street in the area of risky mortgage lending.


Peter Wallison has written on this and the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission (FCIC) report. He lays out a compelling case showing the FCIC “papered over” Fannie & Freddie by ignoring key data and actually not interviewing the most key people at these institutions during the run-up to the failure. He is acute in pointing out that the FCIC ignored the key data, which led to the Frank-Dodd act whose sponsors former Sen. Chris Dodd and former House Financial Services Committee Chair Barney Frank, were the principal supporters and political protectors of Fannie & Freddie.

Pretty comfy, huh?

appeal2reason Take it easy man. Republicans never learn. probably why you abandoned them huh. remember the government shut down of 95? Clinton parlayed that into his reelection. now, with Cantor et al backed into a corner with their no tax pledge Obama can't lose. a poll out today shows 67% of Americans favor tax increases on the rich. Probably because most Americans ain't rich. In any event, the GOP is coming off looking like hard asses who won't budge.

TARP has a $50 billion net cost at worst, most of that GM and Chrysler. Even AIG with the punative 14% loans (compared to Goldman Sachs at 0%) will cost the government next to nothing. Lehman and Bear Strearns wiped out shareholders (the people who should take the loss), but not the taxpayers. Merrill and Countrywide bruised Bank of America, but again, not the taxpayer.

In contrast, Freddie and Fannie will cost taxpayers over $250 billion.

What was Cohan thinking? He lists out all subjective issues, but fails to recognize that none of it would have occurred without Freddie and Fannie. This would be like saying that all of the investors with Bernie Madoff were responsible for his swindling.

Let the facts be the facts!!!

Enough:

Your comment about the Freddie and Fannie liquidations towards the end of your post caught my eye. I had just read this article in Bloomberg News entitled "Blaming Fannie for Crash Gives Banks Free Pass". It's premise is what I have believed all along: that the creation of the financial crisis had multiple strands of DNA contributed by many different players. To blame Fannie and Freddie alone ignores the perverse incentives and in some cases criminal behavior that was being practiced by the financial private sector. It's an informative read. Thought you might be interested.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-07-13/blaming-fannie-for-crash-gives-banks-free-pass-william-d-cohan.html

I think it is clear the Democrats DO NOT WANT A DEAL TO HAPPEN!

The longer this plays out, the better it is for them. If it doesn't happen it is great for them and an anvil upside the head to the Republicans. If it is solved in a "big deal", it is great for Obama.

Pretty clear where the Dems are on this.

I am an old time fan of real Democrats, people like O'Neil, Moynihan, etc., who actually knew how to run the Congress and the country. The current crop are idiots in it only for power and personal gain.

The current Democrat party and leadership is loads with small mounded,mean spirited, partisan attack dogs with little knowledge, manners, or ethics. Just watching them pass Obamacare without reading it sealed their inadequacies in my mind.

The best proof the Democrats are all about politics only?

Obama STORMED out of yesterday's meeting with a series of threats and dismissals.

Obama also wants it to happen. He will not pay seniors and blame the Republicans.

I think his polling people tell him this is the only way he can win reelection.

With less government spending, the economy will grow!!!!

Eric Cantor who stormed out of the budget talks

xxx

wasn't obama the one who stormed out?

Said it before and I'll say it again, there will be no deal. the Republicans WANT THIS TO HAPPEN. It's part of their grand strategy to blow up the economy and use it as an excuse to get rid of all social programs. the latest bit by McConnel is a joke. all a balanced budget amendment means is that it would take a super majority to raise taxes. it just means his rich friends/owners can rest easy knowing he was a better investment. Remember Mitch WE HAD A BALANCED BUDGET. now we don't. It took Bush and his cronies one month to udue years of work by Democrats and Republicans to get the governments affairs in order. That's why I don't have any faith in what any Republican says. believe it or not I was once a college Republican. I actually celebrated when Reagan beat Carter. I'm so disillusioned with the GOP now. They are a party of bullies and zealots. From Michelle Bachmann and her husband who believe they can cure gays to Eric Cantor who stormed out of the budget talks. Tell me, what good is John Boehner if whenever he makes a deal it can be scuttled by some junior congressman from Pigsknuckle Arkansas or a blowhard talk show host or a billionaire with no brains?

I'll even take 2008-level spending!

baffled,

The "Fair tax" is anything but (and is a joke in itself for any self-respecting fiscal conservative).

It is a concept that has NOTHING to do with income and is little more than a VAT, or consumption, tax and represents access to imbedded/accumulated wealth by the government.

How so? Well, say you are retired and paid all of your taxes over 40 years and saved and saved and saved. You now have a nest egg to spend in your retirement. The "Fair Tax" means that every time you spend your already taxed-and-saved money, you will be forced to pay ANOTHER 18 (or 20, or 28) percent tax on it!


[See http://www.fairtax.org/site/PageServer?pagename=about_main
for a decent description of the Fair Tax.]

Better yet, let's bring back the days of Ceasar. Make the poor pay 75% of their earnings and the rich pay nothing.

This class war fare is just a farce. Cut spending back to 2006 levels except for recession costs (food stamps). I cannot believe this is not on the table.

Please explain to me why we should raise the debt ceiling. Why aren't we cutting spending?

Why raise taxes on those who pay 90% of our nations income taxes already? Aren't they paying enough?

Why aren't we developing incentives for the small and medium sized business owners to hire new employees and get this economy moving again?

Why don't we move to a Fair Tax? Everyone pays the same percentage tax (let's say 18% of their income). What's wrong with that?

Speaking of fake posturing, how about our President pretending he is making a serious negotiation when he insists the other side abandon their election promises o. Not raising taxes?

Kinda reminds me of the snookering thatch Dems hit Bush I with after his "read my lips" event.

Yes there will be a deal. Elected members of the legislative branch of the federal government love those paychecks, benefits, and pensions. Plus the joy of helping the many that will vote for their re-election.

Barry O is stooping to new lows to remain President for another four years and the country be dammed. Simple as this. He wants a "BIG DEAL" on terms totally unacceptable to the Republicans and 48% of Americans. The "BIG DEAL" will be defeated since Republicans are protecting Millionaires and an inferior deal will be put into place.

Then in the 2012 election, Obama can point to the Republicans protecting their millionaire friends to the demise of the country. While he knows this won't work from an economic perspective, it will get him reelected.

Two related thoughts. I heard how contentious it was when Bush raised the debt ceiling to $5.9 trillion in 2002 or so, now just ten years later we are talking nearly triple that amount. Oh how time flies and the dynamic of compound interest. But the Republicans should break down the current deficit in the following way:

Baseline George Bush (really Harry Reid/Nancy Peolsi.Deficit)........$250 billion
Recission Impact to Deficit..............................................$500 billion (?)
Obama increased spending............................................$700 billion (?)

I am willing to give Obama a pass on the inherited deficit and the increase caused by the recession (although wouldn't it be nice to tighten ones belt rather than bleed), but this increase (the stimulus was not one time, but rather forever!!!!) is terrible.

Second, I would favor NO DEDUCTIONS for charitable giving over $100,000 for people making over $1 million. My reasoning. Why should Bill Gates and Warren Buffet have their charitable giving subsidized by the Federal government? They want to promote higher taxes. Start by not taking advantage of this provision. They are real hypocrites telling others how they should behave.

Obama did inherit a disaster. But rather than create solutions (where are the Freddie and Fannie regulations or liquidations), he continues to politic. He is very well positioned for the next election, everything is everyone else's fault. He courageously tried to solve the problems.

I'm trying not to listen to it. I can't stand to listen to the fake political posturing. The Reps know there has to be a deal, but they will wait until the last possible minute to do it. The Reps might be afraid of the Tea Party, but money speaks louder and Wall Street holds the purse strings. They will not be happy if a crash occurs.

I would love to see Obama just raise the debt ceiling by invoking the 14th amendment and moving on. That would make my day! Just once I'd like to see him act like a total SOB. How refreshing that would be . . . .

The most dangerous game being played is by BO and the left. Nancy was very clear on Friday: NO ONE TOUCHES SS OR MEDI AT ALL!!!!!!

That says it all ----- the left wants 60% of total spending to be untouchable, period.

They either do not understand the simplest of numbers, or they are trying to tank the country.


There is no other answer. ALL of the polls are crystal clear: The nation wants spedning to be controlled. Once controlled, of course taxes will be redone.

Although it is fun reading all the opinions (with little to no actual facts) on this blog, I thought I would toss in a few tidbits (with comments in [brackets]) for your reading pleasure.

>FDR’s Treasury Secretary, Henry Morgenthau, wrote in his diary: “We have tried spending money. We are spending more than we have ever spent before and it does not work. … We have never made good on our promises. … I say after eight years of this Administration we have just as much unemployment as when we started … and an enormous debt to boot!”
[Hey, any thoughts on what happened to unemployment during and then after the govt spending days of FDR? Anyone? Even a guess?]

>After the Bush investment tax cuts of 2003, tax revenues were $786 billion higher in 2007 ($2.568 trillion) than they were in 2003 ($1.782 trillion), the biggest four-year increase in U.S. history

[No way! This must be republican spin!

>Without immediate spending cuts (real ones) federal spending will remain well above 24% of gross domestic product (GDP) rather than be scaled back toward the 19% average of 1997-2007.

[Now, why would we want to keep fed spending as a lower percent of GDP? Ayone wanna look at this one?]


>Concerning the beloved commie tax rates of 70-90% or so:
-When the highest tax rate ranged from 91% to 92% (1951-63), even the lowest rate was quite high—20% or 22%, and there were a dozen tax rates between 48% and 70% during the 1970s

[Does ANYONE out there think that during these high rates almost 50% of all workers paid either no, or negative, taxes? Anyone?]

>President John F. Kennedy's across-the-board tax cuts reduced the lowest and highest tax rates to 14% and 70% respectively after 1964, yet revenues (after excluding the 5%-10% surtaxes of 1969-70) rose to 8% of GDP.

[This cannot be as everyone knows that you can’t cut your way to prosperity……]


> President Reagan's across-the-board tax cuts further reduced the lowest and highest tax rates to 11% and 50%, yet revenues rose again to 8.3% of GDP.

[Impossible! Lies! All lies, I tell you!]

Uh, I think if you look at the activities ove the past 4-6 years, you wil find that if anyone HATES America, it is the hard far left. By America, I refer to capitalism, freedom of the individual, adherence to the Constitution, respect for the Republic, etc.

The reference to undergrad econ is laughable. Every piece of data shows that in practice you cannot spend your way out of a recession\depression. Your comment showing your belief it can reeks of the old econ joke with the punchline "yeah' but will it work in theory?".

You and those whop thibnk like you fail to understand the concept of increasing thetotal piue, of using noin-static methods incorporating practice to forecast and understand an econmy. Your fallback position is always the saome predictbvle, 60 year old liberal answer: INCREASE THE SIZE OF THE GOVERNMENT as only thegovewrnment knows how to best spend our money!

Note that the millionaire masters applies more to the Demo party than the GOP, by the way.

Hey, appeal2reason,

Take a big breath, turn off MSNBC, pout down the handgun and/or knife, ask your moms to make you a PBJ sandwich, and cool off a bit!

There will be a deal, but it may not be by Aug 2.

Of course, the ilk formed nuts on this blog will never accept any deal made by the Prez and the Congress. Really, to mislead the readers by simplistically stating the "top" tax rates of the 50s to 70s as being in any way meaningful is just plain inane.

The facts are that the 70 and 90% rates were NEVER met! The levels of dodges and write-offs available at the time drove the rates down drastically. In fact, the "realized" rates (which is the only way to discuss taxes) for individuals is very, very close today to what it was under the 70% rates. For those in doubt of this view, please go look up the data (and note that the days of 70 & 90% rates were the days when the major foundations were created to pay zero taxes).

Personally, since I was "there" during the higher rates, I can tell you that even individuals were able to write off just about everything and anything they wanted. Salesmen who did paperwork at home wrote off the s footage of the home "office", mileage was all but a std deduction for accountants, cops, etc.

IF the Prez can step away from his pandering to his far left every few minutes (did anyone watch his conference today? Very good at times, yet he couldn't help but take snarky shots meant to embolden his far left constituents.

IF they can really agree on 4 trillion in REAL spending cuts, IF those cuts include the sacred cows of SS, medicare, and medicaid,and IF on top of all that it also includes the $8oo bil in tax revenue increases, than it is a good deal.

My prediction: IF all of this happens, the far left segment of the Dems will be much more militant and much more disagreeable over approving it than the far right GOPs.

I do believe that the far left is incapable of understanding exactly what the Prez explained to them today ~~~~~~ that their wonderful entitlement programs will actually implode and dissolve without structural changes today.

Three people get it! That is so fantastic to see out here - keep it coming and maybe more people will see through the GOP pretense and we will actually get somewhere. I don't like either party a lot at this point, but the game the GOP is playing is dangerous.

I think Obama is failing just fine on his own.

Of course there will be a deal. It's a game of chicken where both parties know what needs to be done. Everyone may think that politicians are stupid (and they well may be, I suppose), but this is a very simple issue. It'll work out in the 11th hour, when there's no more room to jockey for position.

I can hardly wait until BO is gone . . . idiot.

The Republicans will hold ALL of the country hostage rather than have a tax increase on the wealthiest. The booming economie of the '50-70's had top tax rates for between 70 and 90% ( look it up! ) . The booming '90s under Clinton had higher rates than now. RAISE THE TAX RATES!

Any undergraduate who has taken macroeconomics knows that you can only spend your way out of a recession/depression. You CANNOT cut your way to prosperity. It is impossible.

The Republicans HATE AMERICA! They are brainwashed to serve their millionaire masters. They have controlled the house since January and there has been NOTHING on Jobs!! Hold BOEHNER and the Republicans responsible.

Call Judy Biggert @ (630) 655-2052 or (202)225-3515 and tell her that we NEED a clean debt ceiling passage!!!!

There will be no deal. the right wing nut jobs don't want one.They have no problem destroying not only the U.S. economy but the global economy if it gets them what they want. That being Obama out of the White house and them in total control of everything.
There not even trying to negotiate. they hate Obama and want him to fail. they have all said so. Now they have the chance to blow everything up and blame the president. The thing is they can survive this, the rest of us probably won't. I'll bet anonymous is just salivating at this.A big giant catastrophe to blame Obama for. it won't matter the real cause because 99 % of Americans don't know what the debt ceiling is. They will just wonder why gas is suddenly $10 a gallon, there credit card rate is 50% and a bag of groceries cost $200. Naturally the president will get blamed. Don't believe me? just look at what Michelle Bachman said. she won't vote for an increase under any circumstances. Hey anonymous, are you stocking up on food? Have you pulled your money out of the bank?

Want to know what I think?
There won't be a deal.
the economy will tank.
the Republicans will impeach Obama.
Me and all my neighbors will go broke in the meantime.

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