Thursday, July 28, 2011

You've Lost that Lovin Ceiling

One of the biggest things in the news these days is the hubbub the U.S. politicians are making over the debt ceiling. It's absurd. There's not much I can say about it, but I suppose people are talking about it and maybe might want to talk about it around here, which is fine.

The Republicans are hypocrates and the Democrats are Democrats. Both want to take your money and flush it down the Potomac. Actually, they want to pocket it and re-invest it in the greater D.C. area. Did you know that the majority of the top 10 richest counties are right outside Washington D.C. (the others are all right outside of Wall St.'s backyard).

Money continues to pour into our nation's capital, despite the fact that no elected official would send their kids to any of the local public schools, and we are supposed to concern ourselves with a debt ceiling?

There are some reports that the credit rating of the U.S. federal government will be downgraded regardless. There are reports that if we don't raise the ceiling a disaster beyond imagination will occur. There are reports that foreigners are buying up American homes. There are reports that Republicans are fiscal conservatives. Sorry, now is no time for jokes.

I have been thinking for awhile about writing a post about large numbers and trying to break down the scale of the deficits and debts and budgets to try to make them understandable. If there's enough interest, maybe.

Otherwise, does anyone think Obama, Reid or Boehner has the best interest of the American people at heart? This is why I, a patriot and life long Republican voter, have not voted in a federal election since I voted for Bush the second time. What difference does it make?

But I still read a lot and stay informed. I thought this was an interesting interview, and that this was a very informative article.

Debate on...


Coovo said...

Being the political novice that I am, a good friend of mine once said, "Tim (Coovo's real name) you haven't changed, the republicans have."

I guess that happens. Reagan and even Strom Thurmond were once registered democrats. The man who freed the slaves was a republican. Teddy Roosevelt was a part of something called the Bull-Moose party. Bull-Moose. That sounds like a great stout pint.

I can't help but think that this is what we're staring into now. The tea party folks have hijacked the House so that no piece of legislation can move through to raise the debt ceiling/prevent default. How was Reagan able to raise it 18 times and Bush 7? Did they have to pass legislation? Yes we spend too much, but default is no option.

I am with Ryan in that I haven't voted in a federal election in a while but mine was the first Bush election. The one where more Americans voted for someone else. Even though I voted for Bush I can't help but feel that the same logic that electing a president who lost is at play here when we refuse to come to some sort of agreement.

I distance myself a tad from Ryan's belief that Obama et al don't have the American people in the forefront of their minds. They do. Slightly behind their goal of getting re-elected. One of the people I've most been impressed with is Tom Coburn (R) from OK. Saw him on Charlie Rose a couple of times and he's already said he's not running for re-election and seems to have a very competent grasp on the situation.

In the end, I just wanted to hear the person who wants the Fed audited to chime in on the situation and I'm glad he did.

Now I'm going to sleep.

Ryan said...

Coov, the dueling plans on the Hill right now are so weak and so similar and the history of events that has led us here, which has been a product of both parties striking deals with each other rather than making decisions that are more meaningful is why I say they are not interested in our interests, but in their own.

The only people in D.C. who have a chance of representing us are those who don't care about re-election.

The presumption of this whole mess is that the only way to get out of it is to simply raise the debt ceiling, which is like a family saying, let's just get another credit card. The "fight" is over which credit card to get, not over whether we should maybe cut spending in other ways to start paying down the debt.

I am not a strict balanced budget guy. And now is probably even a bad time for Congress to have a coming to God moment with the ideal of a balanced budget. But to me, there is a lot of room to cut wasteful spending, regardless of if we are still spending in deficit, balanced or in surplus.

That conversation is not happening even to the slightest degree by any of our "leaders" right now.

Not extending the debt ceiling would also not guarantee default or a disaster -- that is a lie told by both parties to ensure the press pays attention to them and they keep people scared. It makes their current "work" seem important.

Ryan said...

This is brilliant, Apple has more cash than the federal government:

Coovo said...

Spending needs to get cut, but doesn't the debt ceiling need to go up just so we can send checks out in August? Again, I'm new at this paying attention to government affairs so bear with me.

From what I've heard, if we slash spending so drastically to meet our fiscal requirements in a few days, the effect would be job loss and and an even bigger hit to the economy. And wouldn't a default be even worse?

And in my newness I fail to see why we shouldn't have a balanced budget. If we keep on having deficits, we'll never get out of this mess.

Gotta go.

G. Smith said...

so it's all been passed - what's your verdict? (not that your opinion counts since you don't vote in federal elections:)

Ryan said...

Verdict, two thumbs down, meaning a yawn. There might be some political ramifications regarding the Tea Party or Obama's reelection, but those are less accurate speculations than the economic ones going around.

Some thoughts:
The "debt ceiling" is meaningless if it is never followed and always simply raised.
Long term agreements are meaningless, i.e., the 10 years of deficit reductions are not binding and won't happen.
The U.S. federal debt got downgraded anyway.
There is no leadership in the main Democratic or Republican parties.
Now is probably not a great time to get all idealistic about balanced budgets or "austerity", whatever that means. So it's not a great time to yank away the main or only sources of income from the poorest people in our country (a sector the government continues to try to increase). But spending cuts must be made in some form.
Cutting spending is like having a baby, there's never a perfect time to do it, you just got to do it.
There's probably no way to make meaningful cuts in spending without cutting military spending.
"Increasing" tax items is probably not as important as a full tax overhaul, reducing the code to a front and back of a piece of paper, eliminating all loop holes and complexities.

The president's job is not to "manage the economy."

Still not anticipating any good major party options this upcoming federal election.

Kevin M said...

The tax debate is interesting (and repetitive), but I liked this take on it.