November 26, 2012

Cliff jumpers.

"A growing bloc of emboldened liberals say they’re not afraid to watch defense spending get gouged and taxes go up on every American if a budget deal doesn’t satisfy their priorities."
Here’s what these progressives fear: an agreement that keeps lower tax rates for the wealthy, hits the social safety net with unpalatable cuts and leaves Pentagon spending unscathed. In other words, they’d rather walk the country off the cliff than watch President Barack Obama cave on long-held liberal priorities.

88 comments:

gemma said...

They sound like they ran the Hostess Bakers Union......

Erika said...

What penance do I have to do for having voted for Patty Murray when I was young and stupid?

I remember her 'mom in tennis shoes' shtick the first time she ran. Well, I'm now a mom in tennis shoes who won't be able to pay her bills every month if our take-home decreases.

Fuck her.

Michael said...

It will be win-win for them since they will get what they want and the Republicans will be blamed for the mess it will cause.

Rick Caird said...

The Democrats are willing to allow any damage to occur as long as they think they are not "to blame". But, if the Republicans offer a viable alternative and the Democrats decline, they will be blamed.

In other words, the fiscal cliff is all about blame, not economics.

Paco Wové said...

"A growing bloc of emboldened liberals say they’re not afraid to watch defense spending get gouged and taxes go up"

Waitaminute... isn't that what they want, anyway?

caplight45 said...

Liberals like chaos. They know how to exploit it and are comfortable in it. Conservatives have a natural aversion to chaos and disorder.

sydney said...

Well, they won. They can do anything they want. Isn't that how it works?

Paco Wové said...

"I'm not afraid of this thing I've been hankering after for years!"

Robert Cook said...

The "defense" budget (so-called, as we are not and have not been engaged in defense but in offense) should be "gouged."

As for taxes, the only way we can increase revenues is by increasing taxes, however that is done. Whether taxes are increased on "everyone," or whether (as should be the case) our wealthy individual and corporate citizens should be held responsible to pay more of their share of taxes, taxes will have to be raised if we intend to decrease our budget deficit. "Tightening the belt" (i.e., shuttering all government programs and services that provide help to Americans in need) will not suffice by itself to close the budget gap.

Of course, it's a lie that the deficit is the greatest danger we face; it's the lack of well-paying jobs that is killing the middle class and that will accelerate America's already on-going fall into third world country conditions.

To paraphrase a Clinton-era slogan: "It's the jobs, stupid!"

MadisonMan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MadisonMan said...

The problem is not that taxes are too low, on any group of wage earners.

The problem is that spending is too high.

If taxes are raised, the only thing that will happen is more Government spending. How is that a good thing?

So-called "Progressives" just don't want to prioritize their spending cuts (beyond the vague "Defense spending" -- Patty Murry does not want any cuts that would affect Boeing, for example, despite her rhetoric).

Robert Cook said...

"They sound like they ran the Hostess Bakers Union...."



Hostess Management killed the Twinky, not the bakers, however much one may wish to believe lies to the contrary

Shouting Thomas said...

As for taxes, the only way we can increase revenues is by increasing taxes, however that is done.

Cookie is one of the most devout believers in Government as Religion I've ever encountered. He must have an altar to the Fed in his bedroom. His trust in the great God of Government is, indeed, very touching.

Yes, slash the military budget. Bring the troops homes. Close the foreign bases.

Get off the permanent war status. This is not a partisan issue.

Scott said...

How did Washington go from Scoop Jackson to Patty Murray? Doesn't the state have a defense industry anymore?

The confluence of the fiscal cliff plus Obamacare is going to put lots more people out of work. And the Democrats want this. They would rather hurt people than relinquish their white-knuckle grip on their ideology of nihilism.

Shouting Thomas said...

The last election certainly made a big impression on me.

What it impressed me with is... we are extremely silly people.

Apparently, we don't have anybody capable of actually filling the representative roles essential to democracy.

Hopefully, the next few generations will produce a higher quality of people.

How much more free stuff do we have to give to the women before they calm down a little?

Michael said...

Robert Cook. There is an interesring article in today's FT contradicting your assertion. The management of Hostess was pro union.

Icepick said...

As for taxes, the only way we can increase revenues is by increasing taxes, however that is done.

No, dipshit, the four million people that were employed in December of 2007 but aren't employed now could get jobs. That would be one way for revenue to go up without raising taxes. There are other ways, but this demonstrates that you are wrong.

Michael said...

Robert Cook. There is an interesring article in today's FT contradicting your assertion. The management of Hostess was pro union.

Shouting Thomas said...

I've thrown in the towel.

An electorate that will send the uber corrupt Elizabeth Warren to the Senate doesn't have the sense to wipe its ass.

Maybe we should just turn everything over to the computers.

Rusty said...

Robert Cook said...
The "defense" budget (so-called, as we are not and have not been engaged in defense but in offense) should be "gouged."

As for taxes, the only way we can increase revenues is by increasing taxes, however that is done. Whether taxes are increased on "everyone," or whether (as should be the case) our wealthy individual and corporate citizens should be held responsible to pay more of their share of taxes, taxes will have to be raised if we intend to decrease our budget deficit. "Tightening the belt" (i.e., shuttering all government programs and services that provide help to Americans in need) will not suffice by itself to close the budget gap.

Of course, it's a lie that the deficit is the greatest danger we face; it's the lack of well-paying jobs that is killing the middle class and that will accelerate America's already on-going fall into third world country conditions.

To paraphrase a Clinton-era slogan: "It's the jobs, stupid!"


Comrade Bob. I admire your consistency.

IT"S THE SPENDING STUPID!


You have yet to give a reasoned argument as to how raising taxes in a recession is going to grow the economy.
And before you give that tired old trope-we can cut the defense by 10-20-30 percent, or whatever your number is today, then we can cut ALL federal spending by the same amount. If the inefficiencies exist in military spending they exist in all federal spending. All spending then needs to be cut. Not military first.

rehajm said...

As for taxes, the only way we can increase revenues is by increasing taxes, however that is done.

Government revenue is a function of tax rates applied to economic activity. Government revenue will increase if economic activity increases.

Also, raising marginal tax rates reduces the incentive to increase economic activity.

Pogo said...

It's the Cloward–Piven strategy, played by seeming adults in control of the US government. The US voters gave them a mandate and now they're going to go all in.

It won't work the way they think, but they won't get any of the blame. Win-win.

I never thought my collection of communist history was going to become my users manual.

Erika said...

Well, if defense gets gutted with Murray at the helm, I hope that Joint Base Lewis-McChord gets BRACed. Maybe also Fairchild AFB, Whidbey Island NAS, Pugest Sound Naval Shipyard, Everett NS, and NS Kitsap, for good measure.

Astro said...

Compared to the federal budget (or compared to the deficit - take your pick) the theoretical increase in revenue that might be gained by increasing the tax rates on 'the wealthy' is a pittance. The only reason for increasing the tax rates on the wealthy is a punitive one. It's taxing them just because they are rich. It's class envy / class warfare.

It has been demonstrated numerous times that revenues increase when taxes are cut. Look at the federal deficit under Bush from 2003 to 2006. The deficit decreased for the 4 years following 'the Bush Tax Cuts'. The deficit only began to increase again following the 2006 elections when the Democrats gained control of the House and the Senate.
The problem is due to spending (specifically non-defense spending) and regulations.
If you really want to cut defense spending, then remove the barriers to energy extraction (oil and gas) so that the US can become energy independent. Then bring the troops home - that's the way to cut defense spending.

AJ Lynch said...

The annual deficit is now $1 Trillion so this argument about how can we cut $1.6 Trillion over ten years is nothing but a misdirection play. And the media is dutifully playing along. As are you Althouse by even giving the subject the time of day.

Curious George said...

If the GOP House folds I think rather than voting for any tax bill Obama put before them, which would normally require some GOP votes, they should simply vote "present." This would eliminate the claim of "bipartisan", eliminate the GOP for taking any blame the harms that would surely follow, and place it all on Obama and the Democrats.

AJ Lynch said...

A comunity organizer as President and a social worker as Senate Budget Committee chairman [Murray]. We are so screwed.

Robert Cook said...

"...before you give that tired old trope-we can cut the defense by 10-20-30 percent, or whatever your number is today, then we can cut ALL federal spending by the same amount...."

I'd say we should cut our war budget a minimum of 50%, but preferably more.

Moreover, not all spending or all waste is equal.

Our war spending produces nothing but death and destruction, and devastated lives, not only for those we're bombing but for our own soldiers. Even as it's spent for its intended purpose, our war spending produces nothing but waste.

Our other spending goes toward education, building and maintaining infrastructure, and providing assistance to people in need: to the hungry and homeless, the sick, the unemployed and underemployed, and the elderly.

Shouting Thomas said...

Our war spending produces nothing but death and destruction, and devastated lives, not only for those we're bombing but for our own soldiers.

Well, there are quite a few things that our "war spending produces," but they are kind of invisible.

Like international stability. You might be surprised, Cookie. Remove the American shield around the globe and hell might break loose on a scale beyond imagination.

I'm willing to take the chance. The U.S. can't afford to continue in its current role.

But, I won't downplay the possible consequences, which include emboldening much worse players to step onto the international stage with evil intentions.

Tank said...

AJ Lynch said...

The annual deficit is now $1 Trillion so this argument about how can we cut $1.6 Trillion over ten years is nothing but a misdirection play. And the media is dutifully playing along. As are you Althouse by even giving the subject the time of day.


Winner.

We're going to have a BIG conversation about relatively insignificant numbers, like it matters, then kick the can down the road ... again.

Patty Murray. If you've heard her discuss economic issues, you know .. she is dumb as a brick (might not be fair to bricks).

Robert Cook said...

The total waste of our ongoing war in Afghanistan

NotquiteunBuckley said...

"Our war spending produces nothing but death and destruction, and devastated lives, not only for those we're bombing but for our own soldiers. Even as it's spent for its intended purpose, our war spending produces nothing but waste."

You have no justification or rationalization for paying taxes that support your vision. This means if you believe in anything beyond the present, you are doomed for your evil taxes going toward what you describe.

You see, we are all a single garment of destiny. Since you are a part of it, you are a slave-owning poor-person hating gay-killing evil-causing problem for the world.

Uglo American.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

Robert have you calculated how much destruction and death your own personal tax contribution caused?

Do you even care how much death and destruction you personally financed?

carrie said...

Obama won't cave and we will go off the cliff. I think that the writing was on the wall to go off the cliff the day that deal was made. The military cuts are the only thing that I think would be a disaster. Recession, depression, high tax rates, etc., we can survive. I think the liberals and conservatives who voted for Obama deserve all of that and that we can sweat out a poor economy for a few more years. However, drastic military cuts would, IMO, make the whole world unsafe and it would be years, if ever, before we could recover from such cuts. I think that it would be drastic military cuts plus people refusing to go into the miliary in the first place or to re-enlist, so the results would be devastating. Hopefully they would bring back the draft and draft all of the children of the liberals and conservatives who voted for Obama to serve in the underfunded, understaffed military and save the world.

Bruce Hayden said...

As for taxes, the only way we can increase revenues is by increasing taxes, however that is done. Whether taxes are increased on "everyone," or whether (as should be the case) our wealthy individual and corporate citizens should be held responsible to pay more of their share of taxes, taxes will have to be raised if we intend to decrease our budget deficit. "Tightening the belt" (i.e., shuttering all government programs and services that provide help to Americans in need) will not suffice by itself to close the budget gap.

As others have pointed out, it just doesn't work that way. What you are using is called "static analysis", and has been discredited for at least since Reagan. For one thing, it assumes that people don't change their behavior based on tax rates. But, of course they do, starting with the most basic decisions of how many people to hire, how much to pay them, etc.

Congress has long mandated the use of static analysis (instead of the much more accurate dynamic analysis) for itself and the CBO presumably because it makes them look less bad, and hides the damage that programs like ObamaCare are going to cause. Which means that their internal policies are heavily biased in favor of higher taxes to pay for higher government spending. Who would have guessed?

Of course, it's a lie that the deficit is the greatest danger we face; it's the lack of well-paying jobs that is killing the middle class and that will accelerate America's already on-going fall into third world country conditions.

And, you seem to think that this happens in a vacuum, without the federal government having increased expenditures by some 5% of GDP since the Dems took Congress in 2006. And, massively increased regulations. Congress, and the Dems there in particular, plus the Obama Administration apparently being, in your opinion, innocent bystanders to all of this.

TosaGuy said...

"Our other spending goes toward education, building and maintaining infrastructure, and providing assistance to people in need: to the hungry and homeless, the sick, the unemployed and underemployed, and the elderly."

No, much of the budget supposedly for those people instead goes towards paying a big block of middle class liberals employed by government or non-profits. Poor people are a commodity for these liberals...no poor...no jobs. The poverty-industrial complex.

Robert Cook said...

NotQuiteUnBuckley:

Of course I'm aware that a portion my tax payments go toward our murder, torture, and imprisonment of people abroad...as does a portion of yours and of every other tax-paying American.

This is all the more reason we should demand that it be stopped. The evil our government does is in our name and with our funding. It is not separate from us.

Shouting Thomas said...

For Christ's sake, Cookie, will you quit re-directing me to Counterpunch!

Those crack brained loons are too much. Even when they're right, I can't bear to read them.

How do you stand that shit?

Unknown said...

Robert Cook

San Francisco Supervisor Dan White shot and killed gay activist and fellow San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk. During the trial, White claimed that consumption of Twinkies sent him on his homicidal rampage and the court accepted this defense so in legal terms we can accept it as true.

In your lame defense that Unions did not put an end to Hostess Twinkies you are advocating a substance that caused an otherwise sane man to kill a gay man (as established to the satisfaction of the California justice system). Why do you hate gay people?

Shouting Thomas said...

Of course I'm aware that a portion my tax payments go toward our murder, torture, and imprisonment of people abroad...as does a portion of yours and of every other tax-paying American.

I hope you have several hair shirts, so that you can keep them laundered.

Nothing stinks worse than a hair shirt in its third of fourth day of use!

Robert Cook said...

Bruce Hayden:

I don't consider Obama or his administration to be "innocent bystanders" at all, for any of the evils our government is doing. He, and they, are fully involved and culpable.

John said...

Robert Cooke,

I read this blog enough to know that you are an imbecile. But that link regarding the Hostess bankruptcy is bad even for you. The argument basically is that Hostess didn't run its company well enough to pay for the union's demands so it is their fault that they went bankrupt. If you can't pay for our gold plated benefits it is your own fault for going bankrupt.

My God Cooke, how do you feed yourself? You have to stop posting this stuff and making me laugh so hard.

Robert Cook said...

Unknown...why bother commenting if you're just going to be stupid about it?

Robert Cook said...

John,

If that is all you got out of the article I linked to, there is nothing I can do to help you.

John said...

John,

If that is all you got out of the article I linked to, there is nothing I can do to help you.


There is nothing else there. That is what the argument boils down to. Since Hostess didn't change with the times, it is its own fault for going bankrupt. Who says it has to change with the times and even if it did who says that would have saved it? The market spoke for what the value of a baker is and it wasn't what the Union thought it was. It is really that simple. If Hostess had been in a different business, wages could have been higher. Well no kidding.

Again, I really don't know how some people manage to feed themselves and make it through ordinary tasks without basic reasoning skills. It is really quite astounding.

Strelnikov said...

Every sane person should support Cliff Diving no matter who promotes or "benefits" from it. This could be a first, small step in the direction of a complete default and re-set of the economy, without which the ultimate crash will be far worse. Time to at least think about taking our medicine.

Strelnikov said...

And I say that understanding that the Republicans will be "blamed" for whatever happens - but that is inevitable in any case. I have reluctantly supported R's in the past, including this last election, but since they are going to either cave completely or, worse, continue in the can kicking, fuck them.

Tim said...

"In other words, they’d rather walk the country off the cliff than watch President Barack Obama cave on long-held liberal priorities."

Duh.

They are, to a man (and woman), Liberals first, Democrats second, hyphenated-whatevers third, and, maybe, just maybe, Americans fourth.

Tim said...

Did Robert Cooke say anything that approximates reality?

Peter said...

Illinois raised its (flat) income tax rate "temporarily" from three percent to five percent.

So, with such a large ( 67% !) increase, IL state government should have no trouble paying its bills- IF the tax-and-spend formula is correct.

BUT, it's still broke, and vendors still aren't getting paid.

SO, perhaps that tax-n-spend formula doesn't actually work??

Robert Cook said...

"They are, to a man (and woman), Liberals first, Democrats second, hyphenated-whatevers third, and, maybe, just maybe, Americans fourth."

Your nonsensical statement--what's a "hypenated-whatever?"--reveals you don't know what an "American" is: An American is anyone born into American citizenship or who becomes a citizen by conscious decision later on.

I don't know what other, imaginary, criteria you believe is necessary or definitive.

Rusty said...

Robert Cook said...
"...before you give that tired old trope-we can cut the defense by 10-20-30 percent, or whatever your number is today, then we can cut ALL federal spending by the same amount...."

I'd say we should cut our war budget a minimum of 50%, but preferably more.


So you want the militia on permanent standby? You want a draft?

Moreover, not all spending or all waste is equal.

No. But all waste is. In your original argument several days ago you stated that corruption and graft alone would amount to 20 or 30%. Why, then, is only the military subject to this graft and corruption? Doesn't greed and corruption permeate all levels of government more or less equally?

Our war spending produces nothing but death and destruction, and devastated lives, not only for those we're bombing but for our own soldiers. Even as it's spent for its intended purpose, our war spending produces nothing but waste.


Wrong again. It produces security. It gives the villains of this world reason to pause. It gives the downtrodden hope. Our creed isn't just for Americans. It is the birthright of every human being on the planet.

Our other spending goes toward education, building and maintaining infrastructure,

These things are supposed to be paid for by direct taxes or user fees. Why is that money going into the general fund?

and providing assistance to people in need: to the hungry and homeless,
Something that private charities do a much better job with. Youi know that government handouts aren't charity, right?

the sick,

You're not on medicare, I see.


the unemployed and underemployed,

Employers pay into a fund for that. BTW at employment again heading for 9% plus your government solution is an utter failure.


and the elderly.


Yeah. SS is a great scam. We're rapidly running out of working young people we can rape for the benefits the elderly enjoy.


Comrade Bob. I'm beginning to think you aren't an honest broker in this marketplace of ideas.

What do you teach BTW?

jr565 said...

Yet I'm sure it will be dems on this board saying repubs are the reason we are not getting a deal or if we do go off the cliff.

Jane said...

And here's the fascinating thing: everyone takes it as a given that if we end up with a 2013 recession, it will be the Republicans fault. If they don't bend and we go over the cliff: Republicans fault. If they bend, but the Dems have a talking point that they didn't get everything they wanted, it's the Republicans fault. If they reinstitute the 90% marginal tax rate, still the Republicans fault.

But if the unemployment drops to 7.7%, then Obama has rescued the economy single-handedly!

EDH said...

As I've said, the Dems have already foreseen recession and war-gamed the need for the Republicans in the wings as their media fall guy.

The Republicans should offer Obama exactly what he asked for before the election, i.e., higher marginal tax rates at the top with no changes in deductions, and run on economic growth and tax reform in 2014 and 2016.

Paul said...

"I don't know what other, imaginary, criteria you believe is necessary or definitive."

That's right. You don't know. You will never know. You are simply irredeemable like so many others who have absorbed and then participated in the dissemination of propaganda designed to weaken and destroy America.

You people have done your job well and we are watching the greatest nation in history unravel before our eyes.

jr565 said...

Robert Cooke wrote:
As for taxes, the only way we can increase revenues is by increasing taxes, however that is done. Whether taxes are increased on "everyone," or whether (as should be the case) our wealthy individual and corporate citizens should be held responsible to pay more of their share of taxes, taxes will have to be raised if we intend to decrease our budget deficit. "Tightening the belt" (i.e., shuttering all government programs and services that provide help to Americans in need) will not suffice by itself to close the budget gap.

the real issue is not taxes, but spending. You could confiscate 100% of the wealth of rich people and it will only cover a few months for running this country. And that will not happen. The only way you make taxes even potentially cover the debt is if you tax the middle class. Do you think dems are going to do that? (Note they already are doing that by driving up costs on fuel and goods, and with things like Obamacare but they have yet to have the balls to do so outright) it would be FAIR, though wouldn't it?
So taxes will be raised on the rich, and the cost will be pushed onto the middle class. And the tax will not amount to a hill of beans .
Meanwhile the spending?

edutcher said...

The people who want to go off this cliff obviously believe they won the election fair and square and thus have a mandate.

Good luck on that.

PS Remember, nobody blames the republicans for ObamaTax.

Tank said...

Hey, this fiscal cliff thingy is the law they passed the last time we had a showdown, a resolution designed to kick the can passed the next election. So, now we're here. America, more or less, voted all these same representatives back in. So, this is what we wanted.

Robert Cook said...

Rusty,

Your assertion that our war spending produces "security" is risible.

It produces nothing of the kind. How secure are we if we must spend a decade plus and billions of dollars at active war, and impose police state measures at home, to "protect" ourselves from a ragged, tiny band of stateless rabble?

Our War of Terror has nothing to do with securing our homeland against danger from without or with defense of any kind: it is a scam to justify the continuation of the theft of the public's treasure by the military/intelligence industry, they who are fatted on our dollar building rapidly obsoleted and often malfunctioning weapons systems, and also to compel our acquiescence to the systematic stripping away of our liberties.

Likewise, your assertion that private charities do a "much better job" of providing for the needs of the hungry and homeless is, if not a conscious lie on your part, delusional.

I'm not on Medicare, but a family member of mine is, and she would be severely pressed, if not outright bankrupted, without it. (And she is someone who worked hard until she was 72 and who banked as much of her income as she could while meeting her living expenses along the way.) I'm not sure what your point is with this attempted "gotcha!"

From Inwood said...

"It's The Tax Take, Stupid, Not The Tax Rate!"

Conserve Liberty said...

@Robert Cook: NO!

Michael K said...

"Tightening the belt" (i.e., shuttering all government programs and services that provide help to Americans in need) will not suffice by itself to close the budget gap.

Of course, it's a lie that the deficit is the greatest danger we face; it's the lack of well-paying jobs that is killing the middle class and that will accelerate America's already on-going fall into third world country conditions.


This is the left wing delusion very well stated. Raising taxes on "the rich" will do little or nothing since the rich already pay far more than half the total although they are 2% or less of the taxpayers. The really rich is the one group that can avoid taxes by reducing income or sheltering it. In the days of 91% rates, so beloved by Krugman, the percent of GDP paid in taxes was 19%.

Cutting spending is the only way to reduce the deficit.

Since the left is considering voting to take us over the cliff, they might find equal enthusiasm on the right since that is the only way to cut spending. There is more acceptance of Pentagon cuts than they realize.

A cute, if useless, tactic for the right, which might come to pass, is voting to raise taxes on the real millionaires who make more than $1 million per year. Since this group votes more Democrat than Republican, it would call Reid's bluff.

Hagar said...

The "fiscal cliff" won't happen.
They will agree to a "temporary" deal while they work out a "grand bargain," but the "grand bargain" will never happen because the Democrats will renege on their promises that were the basis for the "temporary" deal.

Rusty said...

Robert Cook said...
Rusty,

Your assertion that our war spending produces "security" is risible.

A gratuitous assertion that can bve just as gratuitously denied.
No it's not.

It produces nothing of the kind. How secure are we if we must spend a decade plus and billions of dollars at active war, and impose police state measures at home, to "protect" ourselves from a ragged, tiny band of stateless rabble?


Ask Britain in 1775.

Our War of Terror has nothing to do with securing our homeland against danger from without or with defense of any kind: it is a scam to justify the continuation of the theft of the public's treasure by the military/intelligence industry, they who are fatted on our dollar building rapidly obsoleted and often malfunctioning weapons systems, and also to compel our acquiescence to the systematic stripping away of our liberties.


See my answer above.




Likewise, your assertion that private charities do a "much better job" of providing for the needs of the hungry and homeless is, if not a conscious lie on your part, delusional.


See my answer to assertion 1
Fact; Private charities far and away do more per dollar than the federal government in providing for the homeless and hungry.*
*See Hurricane Sandy

I'm not on Medicare, but a family member of mine is, and she would be severely pressed, if not outright bankrupted, without it. (And she is someone who worked hard until she was 72 and who banked as much of her income as she could while meeting her living expenses along the way.) I'm not sure what your point is with this attempted "gotcha"

Hmmm. Let me go back and look at what I wrote.
Ah. I see you are not on medicare, but a loved one is. Does she have supplemental medicare insurance? Most people I know that are on medicare do. Some Dr.s wont touch you unless you do.

I see that you cannot counter my argument with concrete examples to support your opinions.

There is no such thing as a free lunch , comrade Bob, and those things that can't be sustained won't be.
Everything that I told you would happen, before, remember? Is happening now and will get worse in the immediate future unless serious spending cuts are enacted.

Robert Cook said...

Rusty,

You've got nothing.

Rusty said...

Robert Cook said...
Rusty,

You've got nothing


Reason disagrees.

Tim said...

"I don't know what other, imaginary, criteria you believe is necessary or definitive."

Robert Cook,

Indeed, you do not.

Nor would I expect you to, or to have any ability, let alone desire, to know.

Otherwise, thank you for proving my point so very clearly.

Robert Cook said...

Tim,

You apparently believe that to be an "American" requires a person hold to a specific set of doctrinaire beliefs, and any heresy reveals UN-Americanism.

In this, YOU are un-American.

Tully said...

Odd that no one has brought up the difference between raising tax rates and raising tax revenues. The former does not at all necessarily accomplish the latter.

To balance the budget we have to cut spending. I will happily pay Clinton-era tax rates in return for Clinton-era spending levels.

I am sure we will be treated to the usual Beltway Shuffle of wanting to raise tax rates now, but pushing any spending cuts off into the misty future of Never-Never Land.

cubanbob said...

The republicans should man-up and give the Robert Cook's of the electorate what they wish for on others in spades. First take the last Clinton budget, adjust it for inflation and population and insist that is the only budget they will vote for and insists they will not vote to raise the debt limit until that is passed. Second since the electorate voted for higher taxes and as the RC's always claim that taxes are the price of civilization and that everyone benefits equally from government spending let them pay them their taxes good and hard. On personal income eliminate all deductions other than the the standard and eliminate all tax credits other than those by tax treaty and let the Clinton era rates kick in. And since no one should be exempt, tax all non-profits, endowments and foundation's income at the top individual rate and disallow overhead to be charged against the income or required distribution. Require all FICA exempt public sector employees to kick in 7.65% of their gross to their retirement plan and pay 7.65% of their gross in taxes just like the self-employed and require that their pensions be deferred for payment until they reach their respective age that they would qualify for social security. Unless they are disabled they should work until they reach SS retirement age and tax at 91% double dip pensions. It's for the children, don't want to burden them paying higher future taxes to pay for services they will never receive. And since we want the economy to grow and avoid mis-allocation of capital, eliminate the tax exempt status of municipal and state bonds. Don't want wealthy bastards like John Effing Kerry-Heinz to be able to take in enormous amounts of tax free income. It's only fair.

Kirk Parker said...

Erika, scott, AJ, Tank:

Please, please -- that's Patty "Osama the Daycare Provider" Murray to you. Show some respect, will ya?

Chip S. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chip S. said...


Why, RCook, I do believe that your 11:56 comment indicates that you believe that a commitment to freedom is an essential part of "Americanism."

I agree.

Separation of powers, rights of the individual, true federalism...all that stuff.

All of which you seem quite ready to cast aside whenever they impede the march to collectivism.

Robert Cook said...

cubanbob, a handy tip:

When posting a comment dense with words, break up the dense block of solid text with paragraph indentations, or, better, breaks every couple of sentences or so.

This will help insure people will read your comment.

Chip S. said...

RC, cubanbob apparently prefers interesting content over indentation to attract readers.

It worked on me. YMMV.

AJ Lynch said...

Cubanbob: I like it - if only we had one Repub Senator with a set of balls who would use your plan as our opening salvo!

Erika said...

Cubanbob, that was a tour de force. Hat tip to you good sir.

Tim said...

"In this, YOU are un-American."

Robert Cook,

Were you competent to discuss this, it might make for an interesting conversation.

Otherwise, thanks again. You keep proving my point.

n.n said...

We should review our interests and restructure the military appropriately. The principal purpose for our world escapades is to secure resources for our and our partners' consumption. In order to address defense spending, we must address our irrational energy policies, especially those pertaining to production from technologies which are either not viable or have strictly limited viability, including: cannot be reasonably isolated from the environment, low density energy production, and dependent on finitely available resources.

As for the social safety net, much of it is enjoyed -- in perpetuity -- by individuals who are non-contributory or net-negative contributory to the system. Much of its benefits are siphoned by service providers. This is the means and cause of progressive corruption of individuals and institutions. It is redistributive change. It is an involuntary (i.e. coerced) redistribution scheme, which sponsors corruption.

In order to control our expenses and enable growth, we need to establish a reasonable energy policy. In order to control the progress of corruption, we need to employ people in productive pursuits. For the latter, we can realize an immediate benefit by deporting over ten million illegal aliens and their dependents, which serve to displace Americans and justify their dependence. The effort to rationalize amnesty also serves to rationalize the corruption which initially motivated their emigration.

Tim said...

"When posting a comment dense with words, break up the dense block of solid text with paragraph indentations, or, better, breaks every couple of sentences or so.

This will help insure people will read your comment."


Robert,

As you know, Marx didn't follow your advice.

Clearly wasn't an impediment for you then, nor me.

Age is a terrible thing.

Especially if one learns nothing in the passing years.

Robert Cook said...

Tim,

I've never read Marx, and, having looked at DAS KAPITAL, I doubt I ever will.

Robert Cook said...

"Why, RCook, I do believe that your 11:56 comment indicates that you believe that a commitment to freedom is an essential part of 'Americanism.'"

Of course.

"I agree.

"Separation of powers, rights of the individual, true federalism...all that stuff.

"All of which you seem quite ready to cast aside whenever they impede the march to collectivism."


Your comments here tell me you have no idea what my beliefs are and completely misapprehend anything I have ever said here.

gregq said...

No problem. Shortly after we run off that "fiscal cliff", we're going to hit the debt limit. The Democrats can have the end of the Bush tax rates, for everybody, the end of the AMT fix, and the sequestration cuts in defense.

And then they can have a balanced budget, and see how well their "precious priorities" fare when the budget gets cut by $1 trillion / year.

The fundamental stupidity of the Democrats can be seen in the simply fact that they're utterly unable to comprehend that "what goes around, comes around." They don't want to negotiate in good faith? Fine. Neither will we.

Let's see who can hold out longer, and who gets hurt more.

gregq said...

Robert Cook babbled:
"Our war spending produces nothing but death and destruction, and devastated lives, not only for those we're bombing but for our own soldiers. Even as it's spent for its intended purpose, our war spending produces nothing but waste. "

Been to the top of either of the World Trade Centers recently? No? Would that be because we didn't use our military to stop al Qaeda and bin Laden under Clinton?

Why yes, it would be.

Do the Nazis still have concentration camps murdering Jews, gypsies, homosexuals, and political dissidents? No? Why would that be? Would it be because the US military stopped them?

You really are a sad, sick, ignorant, and pathetic piece of work, Robert.

Rusty said...

Your comments here tell me you have no idea what my beliefs are and completely misapprehend anything I have ever said here.


Perhaps it's you.
You assert much that is not supported by facts you do not supply.
As if you speak deep and abiding truths that only you are privy to. Like a private religion.
Bye, Bob. I've tried to reason with you. To teach you. To expose you to a wider world where logic and reason reign. I was wrong. You have stopped learning. You're mind is closed to new and different ideas. Somehow I had hoped you were a different liberal. So sad.
On the up side I can continue to point at you and laugh and poke you with the stick of reason. Enjoy your mediocrity, Bob! You've earned it!

Robert Cook said...

"Been to the top of either of the World Trade Centers recently? No? Would that be because we didn't use our military to stop al Qaeda and bin Laden under Clinton?

"Why yes, it would be."


Um, no, it wouldn't be.

Why would we have used our military against Al Qaeda under Clinton? And if we had, would we have been any more effective in eradicating them than we have been in our 11 years at war in Afghanistan, (and the various ancillary countries where we have expanded our war)? Our ruinously deadly and expensive wars have failed to accomplish anything productive and have produced nothing but...waste, death, destruction, and devastation.

In fact, it is our military activity in those lands that spurs on new recruits to Al Qaeda and similar groups.

We and the world would be much better off--and safer--if we had never initiated our attacks against Afghanistan and Iraq.

"Do the Nazis still have concentration camps murdering Jews, gypsies, homosexuals, and political dissidents? No? Why would that be? Would it be because the US military stopped them?"

Yeah, and what good has our military done for us lately? That was 70 years ago.

Actually, the Russians had at least as much, and probably more, to do with stopping Hitler than we did.

We were not and are not and cannot be the lone saviors of the world. We're not even interested in that. Our military force is projected primarily to impose and enforce our own prerogatives throughout the world, not to serve as altruistic forces of good. We're out there because we want to be the boss of the world.

The world is not a John Wayne movie, bub.

bbkingfish said...

Of course they are willing to jump...because the other side will get the blame for it.