Scream if you want to go faster...

>> Monday, April 18, 2011


Standard & Poor: Heck Of a Job, Obama

The outlook for U.S. debt is not good.
--by John Hayward
April 18, 2011

If you've noticed a bit of a dip in the stock market today, one of the reasons is the new report from Standard & Poor's debt rating service, which downgraded the outlook for United States government debt from "Stable" to "Negative."

This isn't an actual downgrading of our debt rating – you'll know right away when that happens, because you’ll see toads, blood, and stockbrokers raining outside your window. Rather, it's meant as a warning – to both investors and the U.S. government. It means there is a one-in-three chance the United States will lose its AAA credit rating in the next two years.

Although S&P believe America's economic strengths "currently outweigh what we consider to be the U.S.'s meaningful economic and fiscal risks and large external debtor position," they have begun to doubt those strengths will "full offset the credit risks over the next two years." They're worried about our high level of debt, and while they appreciate the beginning of a serious conversation between the parties about deficit reduction, they "see the path to agreement as challenging because the gap between the parties remains wide." They probably were not reassured when President Obama threw a temper tantrum on stage at George Washington University and insisted that uncontrolled government spending is the key to patriotism.

Naturally, the clueless crowd at the White House – the people who brought you a "new normal" of high unemployment and soaring gas prices – dismissed the report as so much balloon juice. Austan Goolsbee, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, is quoted by MSNBC as saying Standard & Poor is "making a political judgment, and it's one we don’t agree with." Oh, good, so our credit rating is safe as long as Austan Goolsbee protects us by sneering at the "political judgment" of the guys who actually issue that credit rating.

The loss of our AAA credit rating would deal profound damage to an already rickety federal budget. We're paying hundreds of billions in interest every year on over $14 trillion of debt. A lower credit rating would raise the interest on that debt by billions of dollars, as well as making foreign buyers less eager to purchase American dollars. If the government responded by printing more money, it could trigger the kind of hyperinflation spiral that ends with hundred-dollar loaves of bread. No one should be under any illusions about the ability of the current Administration to resist the temptation of printing money to escape a fiscal crisis.

Liberal Democrats won't pay a moment's heed to the dire warnings from Standard & Poor. Instead, they'll draw the exact opposite of the proper conclusion, and use the report as a club to beat anyone who resists raising the debt ceiling next month. They should read S&P's statement more carefully. The analysts don't think our problem is that we're not borrowing enough money.

America, and its liberal elite, will learn the meaning of the word "unsustainable" when Standard & Poor chooses to advise the investors of the world to stop sustaining them. That decision will not be subject to the approval of Barack Obama or any of his advisors.

--------------

From the S&P report:

"On April 13, President Barack Obama laid out his Administration’s medium-term fiscal consolidation plan, aimed at reducing the cumulative unified federal deficit by US$4 trillion in 12 years or less. A key component of the Administration’s strategy is to work with Congressional leaders over the next two months to develop a commonly agreed upon program to reach this target..."


What really leaped out at me was the text I emphasized. I thought Obama produced a new budget? But this report appears to back up what others have been saying... there is no plan. Obama went out, and in a petulant, classless speech told everyone what he wants to see in "his" new budget, but now it's up to the "Gang of Six" in the senate to come to an agreement-- they appear to be holding all the cards.

Talk has been, if the US doesn't increase oil production soon we're looking at $5 a gallon gasoline. If the conflicts in Libya, Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen, Syria, etc., spill over into Saudi Arabia, we're looking at further decreases in oil production.

Can we afford to await clean renewable technologies to save us from the very likely events that could cripple our economy? No, even if we start drilling tomorrow morning we wouldn't have oil filling barrels for at least a year, but every moment we wait for clean technologies to save our environmentally conscious souls the specter of economic disaster looms closer.

Sometimes what we want has to take a back seat to what we really need. If only our president understood this.

More from the S&P report:

"Key members in the U.S. House of Representatives have also advocated fiscal tightening of a similar magnitude, US$4.4 trillion, during the coming 10 years, but via different methods. House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s plan seeks to balance the federal budget by 2040, in part by cutting non-defense spending. The plan also includes significantly reducing the scope of Medicare and Medicaid, while bringing top individual and corporate tax rates lower than those under the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts.

"We view President Obama’s and Congressman Ryan’s proposals as the starting point of a process aimed at broader engagement, which could result in substantial and lasting U.S. government fiscal consolidation. That said, we see the path to agreement as challenging because the gap between the parties remains wide. We believe there is a significant risk that Congressional negotiations could result in no agreement on a medium-term fiscal strategy until after the fall 2012 Congressional and Presidential elections. If so, the first budget proposal that could include related measures would be Budget 2014 (for the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1, 2013), and we believe a delay beyond that time is possible."


Can the US economy wait until after the 2012 elections? If democrats retain the senate and Obama the White House, we're at a stalemate, and the problem worsens. Both parties are intractable in their ideologies.

I find it interesting that Standard & Poor sees BOTH plans as a foundation for a good start, and that good things "could result." The problem, again, is two diametrically opposed political forces which will work their positions to the detriment of the country. It's not about the future of this nation-- except as lip-service --for either, but for one more than the other. What it's really about is the consolidation of political power.

[Naturally I believe there's less of this in the republican party, but who reading this is surprised to hear it?]

If Obama loses-- as many expect --and democrats retain power in the senate, and republicans in the house, there's a greater chance of moving fiscal sanity forward. But from where I sit, the biggest obstacle to genuine, responsible, fiscal change is the democrat-led senate.

This country is barreling pell-mell toward an uncertain future, and one party appears hell-bent on maintaining a status quo that is no longer sustainable. Scream if you want to go faster. Make hay while you can. Rock till you drop... Or bite the bullet, and step back from the edge.

The choice should be apparent to all. But apparently it's not.

45 comments:

Mark April 19, 2011 at 7:47 AM  

I'm not confident that Obama won't be re-elected in 2012. Looking at the current crop of Republican candidates who have already indicated they will run, I see none strong enough to defeat the Democrat attack machine. Otherwise known as the left leaning media.

ELAshley April 19, 2011 at 8:26 AM  

Truth be told, I'm not 100% confident either. Media is simply too deep in Barack's back pocket for my comfort. There's no objectivity left, let alone integrity, on the left. Folk like Jim being the prime example. If I were to say Obama's shit didn't stink, his lot would find a tack with which to disagree. They are contrary for contrariness' sake.

But the future isn't entirely bleak. When I came across this article yesterday, I thought it was pretty big news, but I wasn't prepared for was to see it plastered all across the evening news-- well, in my circle of news. There's only so much MSNBC I can stomach.

Question is, will folk like Jim see the article as a warning and come to the table, or will they double down on their ideology and push the petal to the metal?

As I see it, when ideology trumps all drive toward personal survival, there's something wrong with the ideology. I've heard it said that Liberalism is a mental disorder, and the more I listen to the irrational, bleatings of folk like Jim I can understand why some would say such.

Jim April 19, 2011 at 9:32 PM  

"will folk like Jim see the article as a warning and come to the table"

What table? The one where it's your way or the highway?

Uh, no.

ELAshley April 20, 2011 at 8:28 AM  

Yes, Jim, there's a table with a small placard on it that reads..."our way or the highway." Problem is, it's staffed by liberals. Your guys.

Hypocrites. Every last one of you.

Jim April 20, 2011 at 11:15 PM  

Sorry El, but that is certifiable BS. Liberals have been compromising for the last 2 and a half years. Do we have single payer health care system? No. Did we can an adequate stimulus? No. Did we get expiration of Bush era tax cuts on the wealthiest? No.

Try again.

ELAshley April 21, 2011 at 9:03 AM  

Certifiable BS? Certified by whom?

Liberals have been compromising? No, you don't have a single-payer HCS, but what you do have is a system pushed through without allowing the opposition any substantive input. You have a HCS that more than 50% of Americans do NOT want; in point of fact, they want it repealed. A HCS that more than half the states are actively involved in trying to defeat. Idaho, just yesterday, made Obamacare illegal; implementation is banned.

An adequate stimulus? You mean you wanted MORE than the near trillion in FAKE stimulus? You'd have wanted more spent than was? By your use of 'adequate' are we to assume you agree that the Obama stimulus was an abject failure?

Bush era tax cuts? You bemoan Obama's cynical extension, which means nothing in the face of his public calling for their demise? What does that say about your 'golden boy' president? Do you honestly think the expiration of the now Obama tax cuts will save the deficit? Or reduce the debt? This assumes government will actually stop spending, because government has never met a tax-revenue dollar it didn't want to spend. You want to go back to the Clinton era tax rates? Great... so long as we go back to Clinton era spending levels. I actually had money in pocket during Clinton's administration. I've done nothing but struggle under Obama, and it's not getting any better. Almost everything liberals are proposing today will further weaken the American economy tomorrow. Look at your position on oil exploration! $5 gas in D.C. and California.

I'm not impressed or fooled by the 'woe is us' cloak you've draped yourselves in. Oh, how pitiful! Those poor democrats are so beleaguered, and downtrodden! You did it to yourselves by miscalculating the mandate you thought you had in Obama's election. A historic election, no doubt, but just because he's the first black president doesn't give him any special mandate to radically change the culture and economic structure of this country.

Now, if you want to see a mandate, just take a look at the 2010 congressional elections. HISTORIC defeat of democrats in the house. Historic. Why? democrat hubris coupled with a disdain for the will of the people.

Want to know what did you in? What was the driving issue? Obamacare. Your guys pushed an unpopular bill upon a nation that didn't want what dem's were selling. Yes, the nation needs health care reform, but what this nation doesn't need are politicians pushing onto the American people reforms that will never affect politicians personally; reforms that take away individual liberty; reforms that will lead to the same horror stories read about in England and Canada.

What? because you didn't get EVERYTHING you wanted the table isn't really staffed by liberals? Okay, it's staffed by sulking liberals... crybaby liberals. Okay, they may be acting like petulant children buy they're still manning the table.

ELAshley April 21, 2011 at 9:07 AM  

BUT they're still manning the table...

BenT - the unbeliever,  April 21, 2011 at 10:03 AM  

The individual mandate and exchanges are conservative healthcare ideas. At least they were 10 years ago when Bill Clinton was trying to pass healthcare reform. Pres. Obama is a centrist Democrat. It no use crying when he adopts once-conservative ideas when your party has moved even further to the right.

Any discussion of deficit and spending has to realize that the biggest causes of our current deficit happened under the previous administration. The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, put on the federal credit card. The Medicare part D expansion, put on the federal credit card. The Bush tax cuts, again put on the federal credit card. And what makes these things so disastrous to our budget is that they are ongoing expenses. The stimulus package for all it's cost was a one-time expenditure. Like getting your car fixed. Over. Done. The medicare part D plan will cost more and more.

There must be new revenue to offset these continuing expenses or we must pare back federal services.

Eric, you know what happens when you make a late payment on your credit card. You interest rate goes up. Fees you can't afford are added on. Other cards raise there interest rates. And then you're in even worse financial shape. America can raise it's credit card limit easily. If we don't then we enter the vicious cycle. It isn't optimal, but it must be done. It's not Democrats putting conditions on the table.

One day after being named to a presidential task force to negotiate deficit reduction, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor fired off a stark warning to Democrats that the GOP “will not grant their request for a debt limit increase” without major spending cuts or budget process reforms.

ELAshley April 21, 2011 at 10:39 AM  

I'm less concerned with 'single-payer,' at this point, than I am with the individual mandate. Idea's evolve, as do ideologies, as do movements, as do people. I don't care what conservative politicians thought was a good idea during Clinton's attempt at universal healthcare. What concerns me today is Obamacare and the individual mandate.

You can throw it back in our faces, if you wish, that conservatives once thought this or did that, but turnabout is fair play. Democrats once believed in slavery; defended it, and lamented its passing. But that doesn't mean it was a good thing, right? I don't think democrats think NOW that slavery was a good policy position to defend. Your shield of past conservative positions doesn't survive the first salvo.

"Any discussion of deficit and spending has to realize..."

....that irrespective of Bush's ratcheting up of the debt, Obama has still tripled our national debt in just 2 years, giving us a failed stimulus package, to name but one.

....that while the car may be fixed, it was fixed on borrowed money. It was not a one-time payment. It's not over. We're STILL paying for it, and will be for some time to come if the Left continues to insist we spend like drunken sailors.

And raising the debt limit is the worst possible thing we could do. Don't believe the scare tactics...

From the American Spectator:

"Whereas before economic advisers were claiming that reaching the debt ceiling would result in an immediate debt default and economic catastrophe, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner is now making the more modest claim that the government would only be pay[sic] the interest on its debt for eight weeks after the debt limit is reached (which he expects to happen mid-May).

"Geithner is still not being honest with the public. In reality, the government could prioritize its payments and avoid a debt default for many months, if not up to a year. Geithner's bluff is fairly transparent. After all, as recently as 2003, the Treasury continued to make interest payments and fund the government for more than two months after the debt ceiling was reached."


...

"It's not Democrats putting conditions on the table."

Oh, no? The Senate refuses to even bring to the floor House bills that seek to fix our economy?

The GOP "will not grant their request for a debt limit increase" without major spending cuts or budget process reforms."

And what is wrong with that? In light of a $14.3 trillion debt? In light of fear-mongering on the left if the debt ceiling isn't raised? The government needs to learn how to stop spending willy-nilly. S&P's warning wasn't enough for you?

Your every argument ignores the possibility of genuine default. You routinely ignore warning from credible sources, choosing instead to view only those who tell you what you want to hear; what you want to believe. And that's not a very stable position to stand on. Nor is it prudent.

Jim April 21, 2011 at 10:49 PM  

"Obama has still tripled our national debt in just 2 years"

Uh, no. End of FY 2009 (Bush's last budget) the debt was $11.9T. Today it's about $14T. If my math serves me, that's a bit under 18%. Not in the same universe as "tripled".

Where did you get "tripled"? Fox & Friends?

The biggest drivers of the increase in debt were the recession and the Bush era tax cuts plus the Middle East Wars. Obama is not responsible for any of that.



Stimulus did not fail. Period.

BenT - the unbeliever,  April 22, 2011 at 2:47 AM  

"Democrats once believed in slavery..."

So a policy idea that appeared in a report from the Heritage Foundation in 1990 is analogous to a policy of democrats 150 years ago?

"It was not a one-time payment. It's not over."

Yes it is. The money is spent. Gone. Can not be recovered. However the debts from Medicare Part D, The Iraq War and The Afghanistan War plus the Bush Tax Cuts keeps growing larger and larger. The costs of the Iraq and Afghan Wars now top $1-Trillion, which is more than the Stimulus and they keep growing.

"From the American Spectator..."

Even if you accept the words of the American Spectator as truth, (which I would debate) eventually after about a year the nation will reach default of its debts without a debt limit increase.

"the government could prioritize its payments and avoid a debt default for many months, if not up to a year."

Eventually the debt limit must be raised. So lets go ahead and do what must be done, and if now is the time to have a larger discussion of debt, deficit and federal spending, then lets do that in relation to the federal budget for next year. Congress would have until at least October to have serious discussions and maybe reach a consensus that no one will like, but will have a chance of accomplishing a real goal of deficit and debt reduction.

Democrats want a clean debt limit bill. It's republicans holding the country hostage saying, "Give us what we want or the global economy gets it!"

ELAshley April 22, 2011 at 9:06 AM  

Sorry, Jim, I misspoke... Obama's first budget triples the national debt by 2019. [source]

Salient portion of CNN's article:

"Obama was essentially correct when he said he inherited a budget deficit of $1.3 trillion. Though the budget deficit for 2008 was a then-record $458.6 billion, the CBO issued a projection in January 2009, just days before Obama took office that the budget deficit would reach $1.2 trillion that year, before the cost of any new stimulus plan or other legislation was taken into account.

"As for the impact that Obama's first budget would have on the national debt, the CBO estimated the national debt would indeed triple by the year 2019 under the president's budget, from $5.8 trillion to $17.1 trillion. The president's budget office, the Office of Management and Budget, projected that the national debt would increase to $16.0 trillion by 2019.

"When the CBO issued its projections for Obama's budget in June 2009, it projected that the national debt would double to $11.7 trillion by 2019 if its pre-Obama baseline economic assumptions were held steady for 10 years. A more recent CBO baseline projection from this month puts the national debt at $14.3 trillion in 2019 and $15.0 trillion in 2020. "


But here's some deficit numbers...

--2009 Deficit--
Bush's went from a deficit of, roughly, 450 billion in 2008, to 1.3 trillion in 2009 primarily because of TARP. (from CNN's article)

--2010 Deficit--
Obama adds 1.29 trillion to the deficit

--2011 Deficit--
Obama adds 1.6 trillion to the deficit

--2012 Deficit (projection)--
Obama will add 1.1 trillion to the deficit

In three years (including next year's projected deficit) Obama more than triples the amount of over-budget spending from Bush's 2009. This is money we have to borrow to pay out everything the budget asks us to spend. This is an accumulation, like snow; a building and piling up of debt that has to be paid back. That's 3.99 trillion, compared to Bush's 1.2 in 2009. Last time I checked, 3.99 is more than 3-time 1.2

ELAshley April 22, 2011 at 9:19 AM  

The Bush era tax cuts can't be objectively proven to have had any hand in our rising debt. Tax revenues increased big time under those tax cuts. Besides which, the money we're talking about belongs to the wage earner and not the government.

Government makes the huge mistake of counting that money as theirs to be be lost if tax breaks are given. It has never been their money. We pay taxes on what we earn, not the other way around... i.e.; we earn net wages from the government after they determine what their budgetary needs are first. What remains after their determination is what I'm allowed to keep to manage my household.

Government has no business counting the wages of American workers as theirs. If a worker chooses to become self-sustaining (as Dan Trabue advocates) then government loses out on bounty of that individual's labor altogether. After all, government can't confiscate a man's garden in lieu of wages they would have taxed had the man gotten a "normal" job. It is stupid for government to consider any man's wages as theirs first, and the earner second.

ELAshley April 22, 2011 at 9:33 AM  

"Eventually the debt limit must be raised."

No. You're wrong. The debt limit must NOT be raised; it does not HAVE to be raised. Government can learn to do like everyone else, and decide whether it really needs cable in every room. Or whether it needs every light in the house running 24/7.

I mean, that's what we do, right? I can't stomp into my employers office and demand my "debt limit" be raised. I have to trim the fat from my own budget to make ends meet. Sometimes it requires difficult choices. And yes, it is hard for a few months, and sometimes longer. But then it eases. Because I've learned to live within my means.

Same thing with the federal government. Government has to decide what is more important-- an ever increasing debt, world without end? Or a judicious scaling back of expenditures? Lets have THAT debate.

But here's the hard truth... we will never get a handle on our debt if we keep raising the ceiling. Doing that teaches nothing about fiscal discipline. CHANGE must come, not a rise in the debt ceiling. It's just too bad it's not the kind of social justice/engineering kind of change you liberals prefer. Well, no one said it would be easy. Not even Obama during his campaign for president. This transition we so desperately need will not be easy. But it has to be done.

ELAshley April 22, 2011 at 11:55 AM  

It will seem unfair to Jim and Ben that I compare Obama's three years worth of deficits to only one of Bush's, so...

According to the Washington Examiner, in August of 2009...

Obama's 09 deficit exceeds all eight years of Bush red ink

That may not mean much to some, so let's take a look at some 'every man' math.

First, if Bush is responsible for 2009, then Clinton is responsible for 2001's deficit of 75.26 Billion (a relatively miniscule number). So Bush is responsible for fiscal years 2002 through 2009.

Deficits Per Year, Under President Bush: [Source]

2002 Deficit = 233.9 Billion
2003 Deficit = 301.6 Billion
2004 Deficit = 315.4 Billion
2005 Deficit = 283.5 Billion
2006 Deficit = 284.9 Billion
2007 Deficit = 241.5 Billion
2008 Deficit = 472.4 Billion
2009 Deficit = 878.7 Billion

Total = $3.012 Trillion Total Deficit in 8 years


Under Obama, in only three years; one of which is a projected deficit...

2010 Deficit = 1.3 Trillion
2011 Deficit = 1.6 Trillion
2012 Deficit = 1.1 Trillion

Total = $4 Trillion Total Deficit in 8 years.
(3.99 trillion rounded up. I round up here, because I rounded up on all of Bush's numbers, and 3.99 trillion is only 100 billion shy of 4)

Obama has incurred almost a trillion more in deficits in only three years, than did Bush in eight.

You want us to believe that it is Bush's fault that Obama had to borrow, in only three years, nearly a trillion more than did Bush to fix what Bush's supposed 'failed policies' did to the country? Is anyone questioning the damage Obama has done? No one in the mainstream media is; meaning mainstream media has failed to do its job, which is to fairly and accurately report the news.

Well, your math simply doesn't add up. Also, let's not forget the guiding principle of the Obama administration from the outset...

"Never let a serious crisis go to waste. What I mean by that is it's an opportunity to do things you couldn't do before."

--Rahm Emanuel, Obama Administration Chief of Staff, November, 2008

What did the Obama administration want to do? Fundamentally change America? Well, he's done that. Question is, is there time enough to change it back?

ELAshley April 22, 2011 at 12:03 PM  

"So lets go ahead and do what must be done, and if now is the time to have a larger discussion of debt, deficit and federal spending, then lets do that in relation to the federal budget for next year."

Nice attempt at sounding reasonable. But why can't we have that discussion now? Why do we have to wait till October? Cuts need to be made now, today.

Besides which, by nearly a two to one margin, Americans do not want the debt ceiling raised. A new CBS News/New York Times poll shows that 63% of Americans oppose raising debt ceiling. Only 27% of Americans support the move.

[source]

Jim April 22, 2011 at 9:50 PM  

Yada yada yada. Your numbers are not correct. Your claim (from your source) starts from a base national debt of $5.8 Trillion. And yet the US Treasury says that the national debt hasn't been below $6 Trillion since 2001.

Since such an important aspect of your source's argument is false, it makes the entire thing suspect.

I state again that according to numbers from the CBO the three biggest contributors to the deficit (and therefore rising debt) are in descending order the Bush-era tax cuts, the recession, and the wars in the middle east. Obama's recovery measures are insignificant by comparison.

ELAshley April 23, 2011 at 12:09 PM  

Bullshit, Jim. Nothing's wrong with the numbers. Pull your head out of your ass.

Jim April 23, 2011 at 3:27 PM  

Click on the US Treasury Link and show us where the national debt was $5.8 Trillion as claimed by you and your source.

"Pull your head out of your ass." Obviously facts don't impress you.

Jim April 23, 2011 at 3:31 PM  

I'll help you. The national debt was $5.8 Trillion at the end of Clinton's last fiscal budget year.

How dishonest is it to lump all the Bush deficits in with the Obama deficits and blame the tripling on Obama?

ELAshley April 25, 2011 at 8:47 AM  

Take it up with CNN. Their fact check, which you didn't bother to read, states clearly (had you followed the link and read the whole piece) that "the national debt held by the public was $5.8 trillion at the end of 2008 and increased by 30 percent to $7.5 trillion at the end of 2009, according to CBO calculations." All of which I've given you as being owned by Bush. Bush caused the national debt to rise 30% from 5.8 trillion to 7.5 trillion. The rest is on Obama, i.e.; every penny from 7.5 trillion to 13.6 trillion (according to your link) that's almost double what it was when your boy took over.

Now, if you had followed the other link at the site of your link (the one labeled 'Historical Information') and followed the successive links to September 2009 you'd see that the "Total Public Debt Subject to Limit" is 7.53 trillion. Add to this the 'Intragovernmental Holdings' of 4.33 trillion and the grand total is 11.85 trillion in debt. Barack is not responsible for it all. I never said he was. He is, however, responsible for nearly doubling the debt in only one year. It took Bush eight years to increase the debt from 5.8 to 7.5 trillion... a mere thirty percent. Obama increased the debt, in only one year, to just over 50%. Bush? 30% in 8 years. Obama? Over 50% in only ONE year.

"How dishonest is it to lump all the Bush deficits in with the Obama deficits and blame the tripling on Obama?"

Not surprisingly, you've misunderstood. Barack has added TRIPLE to the deficit what Bush added. I haven't lumped all of Bush and Obama together only to blame the tripling on Obama. The simple point of fact is Obama's addition to the deficit is triple Bush's addition. Bush added, in deficit spending alone, from 5.8 trillion to 7.5 trillion, a grand total of 1.7 Trillion. Obama has added, in deficit spending alone, from 7.5 trillion to 13.6 trillion (through September 2010 only), a grand total of 6 trillion added, in deficit spending.

So. Bush added almost 2 trillion in 8 years. Whereas Obama has added 6 trillion in just two years. Last time I checked 6 trillion is 3 times "almost" 2 trillion.

At some point, someone is going to have to say 'enough is enough.' We know that person is not going to be Obama... or a democrat. So we'll have to wait till next year's elections, and hope republicans are given the ability to say it, mean it, and make it so.

All you and your guys care about is spending our country into ruin, for something as tenuous and cynical as political power.

Jim April 25, 2011 at 10:29 PM  

Yes, 6 trillion is 3 times 2 trillion. But nowhere is this comparison established. Your mathematical gymnastics are impressive but nonsensical. Example:

At one point you cite: "the national debt held by the public was $5.8 trillion at the end of 2008 and increased by 30 percent to $7.5 trillion at the end of 2009, according to CBO calculations." This is as it says, a 30% increase in ONE YEAR, the final Bush budget year.

But then there is this: "So. Bush added almost 2 trillion in 8 years." Wait, above you showed that was in ONE YEAR.

Above you claim "Obama's first budget triples the national debt by 2019". Now you are proving it with numbers that you yourself say is Obama adding to the "debt" in two years three times what Bush added in one, or eight depending on which part of your post you're comparing. Not only is that NOT what you were claiming above but it's not apples to oranges.

"you'd see that the "Total Public Debt Subject to Limit" is 7.53 trillion."

Nope. That is public debt held by the public. Doesn't include debt held by the Social Security Trust fund and other government agencies. Total actually is $11.8 Trillion.

You can't pick a portion of the debt that is a low number and then somehow suppose that Obama's total debt is comparable and doesn't include all debt.

That's wrong. And it's highly dishonest. But nice try.

ELAshley April 26, 2011 at 8:14 AM  

Since you seem completely incompetent; enough to understand what's clearly simple. I have nothing more to say to you.

Nothing dishonest here, except your assertion and claim to be in possession of sense and intelligence.

Nice try Jim, but you're an idiot. And a dishonest one at that.

ELAshley April 26, 2011 at 8:31 AM  

I Said:

"...you'd see that the "Total Public Debt Subject to Limit" is 7.53 trillion. Add to this the 'Intragovernmental Holdings' of 4.33 trillion and the grand total is 11.85 trillion in debt."

Wow! 11.85 trillion... Imagine that! I came up with the same number Jim complains about...

Jim Said:

"Nope. That is public debt held by the public. Doesn't include debt held by the Social Security Trust fund and other government agencies. Total actually is $11.8 Trillion.

Hmmmmm. That's what I said. Jim's an Idiot.

Need more proof?

The deficit was 5.8 trillion (under Bush) in 2008. 2009 is given to Bush (primarily because of TARP and 2 wars and the prescription drug benny). The 2009 deficit total was 7.5 trillion, a 30% increase in only one year. The grand total increase amounts to 1.7 trillion-- not quite 2 trillion; "Less Than" two trillion... in one year.

Now... the debt has climbed from 7.5 trillion in 2009, to 13.6 trillion in 2011. That's under Obama. Those are the only numbers I'm attributing to Obama. Subtract 7.5 from 13.6 and you get 6.1 trillion. In two years, Obama adds 6.1 trillion to the debt. Whereas, Bush in only a single year adds "Less Than" 2 trillion.

How does Jim respond?

"But then there is this: "So. Bush added almost 2 trillion in 8 years." Wait, above you showed that was in ONE YEAR.

"Above you claim "Obama's first budget triples the national debt by 2019". Now you are proving it with numbers that you yourself say is Obama adding to the "debt" in two years three times what Bush added in one, or eight depending on which part of your post you're comparing. Not only is that NOT what you were claiming above but it's not apples to oranges."


I'm sorry it's confusing to you, Jim. Incapable of thinking for yourself? Need someone to hold your hand? Raised in a Union household? Your objections are utter nonsense. You're MAKING no sense. You need politicians to show you how to think..? WHAT to think?

Perhaps someone else knows how to make this simpler for Jim? If so, feel free. I'm done.

ELAshley April 26, 2011 at 8:56 AM  

But let's talk percentages...

Bush: In one year, from 5.8 trillion to 7.5 trillion, Bush adds 30% to the existing deficit.

Obama: In two years, from 7.5 trillion to 13.6 trillion, Obama adds 43% to the existing deficit.

Couched in these terms it doesn't look as bad. Bush added 30%, Obama 43%. But in actual dollars... Bush adds 1.7 trillion in a single year, whereas in two years, Obama TRIPLES the amount Bush added. What did Bush add? That's right class, he added 1.7 trillion dollars. What did Mr. Obama add? Right again, class! He added 6.1 trillion in two years. That's almost 4 times what Bush added, but we're being generous today, we're rounding down to 3 times.

Just for fun, class, how much did Mr. Obama add to the deficit in just ONE year. That's right, 6.1 trillion. For added fun, class, how much has Mr. Obama added to the deficit since September of 2010? Well, Jim's treasury numbers don't go beyond March of this year, but how much was it last month? THAT's RIGHT, Children, the deficit as of last month was 14.22 trillion dollars. Since last September, Mr. Obama has added another 600 billion to the deficit. His grand total from 2009 to last month is 6.7 trillion dollars!

In all eight of Bush's years, 2002 through 2009 (inclusively) Bush racked up a whopping total, in deficit spending, of 3.012 Trillion.

IN ONLY 2 and a HALF YEARS, President Obama has added 6.7 Trillion. That is more than DOUBLE in only 2 and a half years, what Bush added in eight. And he fought 2 wars, on top of the typical governmental waste and fraud.

Now don't let all this talk of doubling here and tripling there confuse you, like it has Jim. It's easily understood, if you simply apply yourself.

Jim April 26, 2011 at 12:25 PM  

Thank you for your patronizing bullshit, El. It really proves your superiority.

It also proves that you can't write a post that makes any sense.

You are all over the place. At one point you provide a deficit number for Bush for 1 year, call it 8 years and then compare it to 2 or 3 years of Obama.

How can we take you seriously when you confuse debt and deficit:

"THAT's RIGHT, Children, the deficit as of last month was 14.22 trillion dollars." And then there's:

"Just for fun, class, how much did Mr. Obama add to the deficit in just ONE year. That's right, 6.1 trillion." Six trillion in one year? That is counter to fact as well as your own "numbers".

In one post you tally three years of Obama deficit as $4 trillion, then later you say "IN ONLY 2 and a HALF YEARS, President Obama has added 6.7 Trillion." Then 6 trillion in one year.

But my main point still stands. You count only part of the national DEBT as Bush's ending and Obama's starting point, and then compare it to the total debt for Obama's ending point. Apples to oranges.

"Your objections are utter nonsense." I don't think so, Tim.

There is no doubt that the deficit has risen much faster during the Obama administration. We have been recovering from a recession which requires more spending while less revenue is coming in. Unemployment compensation, extended beyond normal terms, among other things.

If you are signing on to the Beck school of political science and claiming that Obama is purposely trying to destroy the financial system of this country, then you are as bat shit crazy as he is. Obama has done NOTHING that many main stream economists have not suggested or agreed with.

ELAshley April 26, 2011 at 2:01 PM  

No, I do not think Obama is PURPOSELY trying to destroy the financial system of this country. But I do believe he is destroying the financial system through sheer incompetence and lack of experience.

Jim April 26, 2011 at 2:32 PM  

Well, there are a few of you on the fringe who believe that, but most mainstream thinkers and economists don't. We are in tough times and Obama has many experts working to resolve huge problems. They won't be solved immediately.

As far as incompetence and inexperience, I can easily point to his predecessor.

ELAshley April 26, 2011 at 3:34 PM  

You could, but it would be disingenuous.

Obama had never managed anything of consequence prior to becoming president. Obama is the lesson: Never again will this nation elect a man devoid of experience. For if it does, we'll deserve everything he gives us... or 'she,' as the case may be.

Mark April 26, 2011 at 4:33 PM  

I think Obama is purposely trying to destroy America through it's financial system. I do not think anyone could be that incompetent.

He is doing exactly what a Progressive Marxist would have to do to destroy America. That is no accident.

ELAshley April 26, 2011 at 5:46 PM  

I don't want to believe Obama could be doing this intentionally. I'd rather believe him incompetent. That said, I'm not wearing blinders. I just need more proof-- something a bit more incontrovertible --before I pin that on him.

Jim April 26, 2011 at 6:18 PM  

Only people on the fringe of the right wing think he's incompetent. Only people beyond that fringe think he's trying to destroy the country. It's one thing to disagree with the president's policy. It's another to attempt to de-legitimize him, and that's what you and yours are trying to do.

Marshall Art April 27, 2011 at 12:23 AM  

"Only people on the fringe of the right wing think he's incompetent."

Not true. Anyone who'll open their eyes can see it. It's right there, obvious to any honest thinking person.

To say he's trying to destroy the country is not so off the mark if one understands that his incompetence will so accomplish that left unchecked. He willfully continues on the path his incompetence leads him to take. He is trying to make incompetence work. Incompetence will destroy the country. Therefor, he is trying to destroy the country. The thing is, he, as well as people like Jim, are just too incompetent to realize it.

His incomptent policies and agenda does all the de-legitimizing for us. There's no "trying" required on our part. We just call it as we see it. Open your eyes and you'll see it, too.

ELAshley April 27, 2011 at 8:34 AM  

I've been hearing a lot of democrats lately who're saying the same thing.

Example of incompetence.... Obama wants to do away with subsidies to "big oil," believing this will bring the price of gas down a bit. Now, granted, the genuinely "big" oil companies don't really need the subsidies, but the subsidies have offset monies these companies would have spent in other areas. The smaller companies would be greatly impacted by this cut, and the exploration they do would all but dry up. The price of oil goes up.

Obama isn't using logic or good economic sense to make these decisions, he's using his ideological sense of 'fairness'-- a Marxist-based sense of fairness at that.

He is right, though... subsidies of ALL stripes should end. The problem with his decision however isn't in doing the right thing, but rather in sticking it to the oil companies. He either doesn't realize this action, at this time will hurt the American people, and the economy, or he DOES realize it, and doesn't care. Obama is on record as having said that he wants to see gas prices in America more in line with prices around the world... in other countries. Too bad the countries he DOESN'T have in mind are countries like Saudi Arabia where gas is roughly .45 a gallon
[source]

The irony in all this is we could substantially reduce our dependence on foreign oil, AND bring the price of a gallon of gas down if we only made use of our own oil-rich resources.

ELAshley April 27, 2011 at 9:08 AM  

Here's a take on the price of oil/gas in America that will garner all kinds of negative feedback from our resident detractors, ever the 'flying in the face of reason' somnambulistic intellectuals... "Asleep At The Wheel Of Reason." [did I just coin a new phrase? Hmmm]

Thanks to Obama, Gas Jumps in a Flash

Most interesting is the part, toward the bottom, that details how the drop in gas prices in '08 and '09 came because of Bush's actions. No matter what Obama and his supporters might try to tell you, don't believe it! The drops occurred BEFORE Obama's election.

The fact is, Obama could do a lot to bring down the price of gas in this country simply by lifting the moratorium on drilling in the gulf... simply by LIFTING... the ban on drilling. It worked for Bush, it'll work for Obama too. But Obama's not interested in the cost, to Americans, of rising energy prices. He's interested in making things "fair" for everyone. And, apparently, in Obama's world "fair" means "equal misery for all."

Here's something of note. I know some of us here have used it already, but this weekend I actually heard in on the news... "The Obama Misery Index."

What more proof do we need of Carter's second term?

ELAshley April 27, 2011 at 9:18 AM  

I just Googled "Asleep at the Wheel of Reason"

And there is only one instance of that exact phrase returned.

I think I'm near enough at the top to use it as my own.

Jim April 27, 2011 at 3:16 PM  

"Obama wants to do away with subsidies to "big oil," believing this will bring the price of gas down a bit."

I don't think he has said or believes that. Who would? You're totally making that up. Price of oil is based on world markets, demand and supply, and speculation. It is not based on subsidies or lack thereof to the oil companies. There is currently plenty of supply, but speculation is driving up oil prices.

Therefore, removing oil company subsidies will have negligible affect on US gas prices.

No evidence of incompetence there.

"Obama is on record as having said that he wants to see gas prices in America more in line with prices around the world... in other countries. Too bad the countries he DOESN'T have in mind are countries like Saudi Arabia where gas is roughly .45 a gallon"

What a patently ridiculous statement!

"The irony in all this is we could substantially reduce our dependence on foreign oil, AND bring the price of a gallon of gas down if we only made use of our own oil-rich resources."

If only? There are few if any non-oil company shills who would sign onto this "theory."

"He's interested in making things "fair" for everyone. And, apparently, in Obama's world "fair" means "equal misery for all.""

Totally irrelevant to the subject.

ELAshley April 27, 2011 at 5:27 PM  

On June 10, 2008 the democrat nominee for president, Barack Obama, while on MSNBC spoke about how he didn't think the then price of gas ($4.05) was too high, he just would rather the increase been more gradual.

Then candidate Obama, thought $4.00 a gallon gasoline was just fine. He thought Americans should be paying along the lines of what Europe was paying...

I didn't make this up.


[Source] Obama NOT lamenting the high cost of gas in 2008
[Source] Mitch McConnell Criticizing Obama's statement
And just for fun here's O'Reilly's ["Talking Points Memo"] from before the 2008 election.

Obama says, right off the top...

"[Bush], frankly, hasn't had an energy policy."

Really, Mr. President? He managed to get the price of gas to drop, by doing the one thing you've refused to do.

Truth is, Mr. President, it's YOU that doesn't have an energy policy.

Barack Obama, democrats, and quite a few Republicans...

Asleep at the wheel of reason!

Mark April 27, 2011 at 5:34 PM  

It is common for Progressive Marxists like Obama to claim they want to "level the playing field". However, their idea of leveling the playing field is to lower the wealthy to the low levels of the poor. Instead of attempting to make everyone richer, they try to do the opposite. They want to make everyone poorer, while enriching the elite few that they believe themselves to be.

This back-assward way of leveling the playing field is exactly what the Communists in Russia did, resulting in long lines to purchase everyday staples like bread and flour and sugar.

This is Obama's Marxist plan, and anyone who thinks he is simply incompetent and accidentally turning America into a Soviet satellite, isn't giving Obama enough credit. He knows exactly what he's doing, and it's straight out of the Communist Manifesto and the writings of Saul Alinsky.

Jim April 27, 2011 at 8:43 PM  

"However, their idea of leveling the playing field is to lower the wealthy to the low levels of the poor. "

Absurd.

"They want to make everyone poorer"

Absurd.

"while enriching the elite few that they believe themselves to be"

Wow, Obama's income in 2010 is $1.3MM over his salary due to book sales. Just how is he enriching himself?

"it's straight out of the Communist Manifesto and the writings of Saul Alinsky."

Absurd. You wouldn't know Saul Alinsky if he bit you in the ass.

I don't have any problem with what Obama said about $4 a gallon gas. I think it should cost more, too. I wouldn't like paying it, but I think that it would help incent people to use public transportation and invest in alternative sources of power.

What I had a problem with was your implication that oil costs $.45 a gallon outside the oil-producing gulf states.

ELAshley April 27, 2011 at 8:48 PM  

"What I had a problem with was your implication that oil costs $.45 a gallon outside the oil-producing gulf states."

That;s not what I said at all. The photo was taken by an American woman who lives in Saudi Arabia with her Saudi husband. She explained the price conversion in her blog post.

Jim April 28, 2011 at 12:19 AM  

Then what's the effing point? Gas is $.45 cents a gallon in Saudi Arabia. BFD. Cool picture. Whoopie.

ELAshley April 28, 2011 at 8:45 AM  

The point, sonny Jim, is that we too could have "cheep cheep" gasoline. Not overnight, but we could, in just a few years drop the price of a gallon of gas to a dollar a gallon.

But liberals like yourself don't want cheap gas.

What did you say?

"I think it should cost more, too. I wouldn't like paying it, but I think that it would help incent[sic] people to use public transportation and invest in alternative sources of power."

That's like saying, "Let them eat cake." It's ridiculous.

Obama thinks it should cost more too. You and he are more concerned with propagating your own ideological mores upon the backs of the general public rather than helping the public become more productive with less cost. You and Obama are all about saving the little guy from evil corporations, all the while forcing the little guy to operate under the weight of your own 'evil' machinations.

What about small towns without public transportation? 'Let them walk,' Jim says. 'Let them go hungry,' he says. 'Let even the clothes upon their backs cost a weeks wages.'

"A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny, and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine."
--Revelation 6:6

You rant about how conservatives hate the poor, yet you'd make them walk to work, and pay higher prices at check out.

ELAshley April 28, 2011 at 8:52 AM  

"They want to make everyone poorer..."

YOU do. You want them to pay more per gallon, more at checkout, more for the clothes on their back. You want those who can't afford the price of gas to walk. You want to force investors to put their money on viable technologies that either don't yet exist, or aren't yet up to the heavy lifting that oil is. In short, you want the nation to suffer while new technologies struggle to catch up to the pipe dream you and Obama are smoking.

YOU want to make everyone poorer? Absurd?

Your claim to intellectual capacity? Absurd.

Jim April 28, 2011 at 10:54 AM  

"Your claim to intellectual capacity? Absurd." There you go again, proving your intellectual superiority. I bow down to you, master.

"we could, in just a few years drop the price of a gallon of gas to a dollar a gallon."

This is utterly delusional. There isn't enough oil in North America to do this. And if it were a dollar a gallon, nobody would want to produce it. Or do you have a credible source for this nonsense?

"You and he are more concerned with propagating your own ideological mores upon the backs of the general public"

That's a laugh coming from you.

Gee, how do the "peasants" in rural Europe survive with gas at 2 or 3 times what Americans pay.

"You and Obama are all about saving the little guy from evil corporations"

More absurd BS. Not worth further comment.

I find it interesting that you are supposedly so concerned about the deficit (not really, just the spending side of it) because of how it affects America's future, but when it comes to energy you can't see past your next fill up.

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Young Turk:
Date: 1908
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:an insurgent or a member of an insurgent group especially in a political party : radical; broadly
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