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Should We Kick the Can?

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: Budget, Deficit, Economy )

- 1927 days ago -
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TomCat S (129)
Friday February 8, 2013, 6:19 am
Several times in the last few weeks, I have said that I would rather suffer the spending cuts in the sequester than a Ďgrand bargainí that reduces benefits, that present and future Social Security and/or Medicare recipients have earned with their life-long payroll deductions. On that, I have not changed. However, I have also strongly opposed kicking the can down the road, and on that issue, Paul Krugman has made some arguments that are leading me to defer to his wisdom on that point.

Carol H (229)
Friday February 8, 2013, 9:33 am
noted and agreed! thanks Tom

Kit B (276)
Friday February 8, 2013, 9:45 am

Increase taxes and spending, if that spending is on government projects that create many jobs. We have severe needs to replace our out dated infrastructure. We can also replace our grid system to make it far more efficient, we lose so much power in these old ones. Attach the new grids to alternative energy systems and all of these jobs are American jobs. When people have jobs they once again begin to spend money and that can be used to pay down our debts, over time. Budget slash and burn does nothing for the people of this country, but some how always manages to favor the few.

Social Security are always on the "table" or chopping block, when workers have paid into them for all of their working lives. Wouldn't it be surprising if just once we could approach budget issues without threatening the poor and elderly? When you look at some of the things Congress wants to spend on the military, even the military doesn't want those toys. Can we safely cut the military? The Joint Chiefs and the Pentagon both say yes - we can.

Kit B (276)
Friday February 8, 2013, 9:51 am

**Social Security and Medicare are always on the chopping block....***

David C (131)
Friday February 8, 2013, 10:45 am
could we just kick the republicans?????

cut military spending....60% of US budget....little percent decrease, big amount of $$$$

P A (117)
Friday February 8, 2013, 11:03 am
I agree with your reasoning, TC.

Chris C (152)
Friday February 8, 2013, 12:51 pm
Green star to Kit B - this is EXACTLY my view!

Yvonne White (229)
Friday February 8, 2013, 2:22 pm
Bone-head said:"ďIíve watched them kick this can down the road for 22 years since Iíve been here. Iíve had enough of it. Itís time to act.Ē NOW??????? Seriously? He WATCHED for the 22 YEARS he's been there, but NOW he wants to do something? No matter what the Real cost is in pain & suffering?? SUDDENLY he has Principles??? I'm so sick of Bu$h League LIARS & profiteers!!! Can't we start kicking CONgre$$ional "cans" down the road??


Mary T (178)
Friday February 8, 2013, 2:59 pm
Bone Head is an idiot the only thing he and his do nothing congress are the ones that are all about getting nothing done or any thing they can do to put Social Security and Medicare on the chopping block, If they are so concerned about the country's debt why don't they take a cut in their pay since they have done nothing to deserved it, I agree with Dave and Yvonne why not kick the republicans can down the road.

Gene J (290)
Friday February 8, 2013, 3:34 pm
TomCat? Paul Krugman has made some arguments that are leading me to defer to his wisdom on that point."

Paul Krugman not only has arguments, he has the truth. He espouses Keynesian economic theory. This was what FDR used to bring us out of the Great Depression. In essence, Keynes taught that in times of recession or depression what was needed was an immediate economic stimulus. He held that the best way to accomplish that was for government to spend (even if that meant deficits) to create jobs. His idea was that those jobs, police, fire, and other essential government services would result in paychecks that would be spent immediately in the local economy leading to a resurgence in small businesses, which are the backbone of our economic model (notwithstanding the giants in economy such as Wal-Mart) and so would restart the economic engine. Republican's, not surprisingly, didn't like the idea of increased government spending. But it worked. Richard Nixon, when faced with a recession, admitted as much when he said "we are all Keynesians now". He used deficit spending to right our economy, so too did Presidents Reagan and both Bush's. It is only NOW when we have a Democratic president that the "party" has turned on its heel and opposes deficit spending. Keynesian economic theory proves that austerity measures in a recession make that recession worse. The entire continent of Europe is doing exactly the opposite of what is needed to make things better. Which, of course, means things are going to get worse.

Our own country? Well, the republican party knows what Nixon, Reagan and both Bush presidents did. They also know how to save our economy. The question is, are they willing to let our economy crash along with Europes. They could cooperate with our President and keep our economy strong, or they could be so ideologically bound that they are willing to allow us to fall back into a recession. I don't know what they will choose, but there are certainly public projects that, even with a deficit, need attention. Like our electrical grid, do you know that a well placed blow could turn our entire country dark? Or our water and sewer system. There are TODAY an average of 50 crises per day, breakages that disrupt local traffic for hours, sometimes in major cities. Sewers and water mains are built to last an average of 40 years, in many cities they are more than 100 years old. I could, and maybe should, go on and on, but the point is, there are public projects that NEED doing and were our government to undertake them, we would be shielded from the crash that is coming in the European economy. The catch? Our republican party is willing to crash the American economy so they can blame our President and recapture the presidency. My hope is that the truth will get to the American voters and we take back the House as well as the Senate in 2014 and retain the Presidency in 2016. There are billion dollar right wing organizations, Karl (the impotent puke, sorry my opinion) Rove's among them. The battle is not over, it has barely begun. And then there is the climate...

JL A (281)
Friday February 8, 2013, 5:34 pm
Between Gene and Krugman, everything that needs to be said has been said--now to get Congress to return to reality from whatever fantasy some have been living in.

Yvonne White (229)
Friday February 8, 2013, 6:32 pm
The RepubliCONs (and DINOs & even the President to some extent) have decided Corporations are the Future - the same RepubliCONs who scream about UN "New World Order" are Already under orders from Corporate Headquarters! Both parties have Openly questioned the sanctity of Social Security! That is Blasphemey for Democrats!!!! This really scares me..and terrifies the elderly & disabled. CONgre$$ has become a Terrorist Organization!

Lynn Squance (235)
Friday February 8, 2013, 7:55 pm
John Boehner said:

"At some point, Washington has to deal with its spending problem, ÖIíve watched them kick this can down the road for 22 years since Iíve been here. Iíve had enough of it. Itís time to act."

I personally think the phrase should be, although Boehner would not say this: At some point, Washington has to deal with its politician problem.

It has taken Boehner 22 years, the squandering of a Democratic surplus (after Clinton), 1 illegal war, 1 questionable war, unnecessary tax cuts to the 1% and corporations, countless stupid decisions like the USPS debacle and the focus on repealing Obamacare 33 times, 2 fiscal cliffs, . . . etc etc ad nauseam to realise there is a problem? Not a very intelligent person this John Boehner! As I said, it IS a politician problem, not a spending problem.

"Realistically, weíre not going to resolve our long-run fiscal issues any time soon, which is O.K. ó not ideal, but nothing terrible will happen if we donít fix everything this year. Meanwhile, we face the imminent threat of severe economic damage from short-term spending cuts.

So we should avoid that damage by kicking the can down the road. Itís the responsible thing to do."

My question is, how far down the road? If it is until the US is in full recovery, then there needs to be a lot of new progressive political blood in Washington that understands some economics and is not playing up to the 1%, corporations and banksters. Europe is proving just how ill conceived austerity only is. Previous US administrations, both Democratic and Republican I might add, have proven that government spending, not gratuitous spending, but prudent spending, is better for stimulation of the economy.

Also, SS, Medicare and Medicaid cannot be on the table for both moral and financial reasons, not that morals would ever stop the Republican/Teabaggers. The GOP is ideologically constipated!

2014 is coming! Deal with the political problem by cleaning the House and Senate of the Republican/Teabaggers and DINOs.

Well said Kit and Gene!

John B (185)
Friday February 8, 2013, 8:00 pm
Thanks Tom for the post and the update on the two missing articles from yesterday. I'm with J.L. on this. After reading your post and comments there is nothing to add. Between you, Mr. Krugman, Gene J. and Kit what else is there to say. Read and noted.

Bruno Moreira (61)
Saturday February 9, 2013, 8:27 am

TomCat S (129)
Sunday February 10, 2013, 4:30 am
Thanks all, and kudos to Kit, Gene, and Lynn.
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