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The Fiscal Cliff

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  • #519417
    News
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    Let’s Jump Over the Cliff (in a Year)

    My dad always said that a government that does as little as possible is the best kind of government. (My dad also voted for Ross Perot, so please don’t think that he was some kind of genius). But, when it comes to the “fiscal cliff” drama playing out in Washington, what happens if the government does nothing at all? What impact does that have on your business? And is it that bad? Maybe not doing anything at all is the best thing for all of us. Because it’s not always about what the government does, just when it does it.

    READ MORE: http://www.inc.com/gene-marks/fiscal-cliff-lets-jump-over-in-a-year.html

    #519418
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    Obama, Boehner talk and exchange new offers on “fiscal cliff”
    WASHINGTON | Wed Dec 12, 2012 12:09am EST

    (Reuters) – Negotiations to avert the “fiscal cliff” ahead of a year-end deadline intensified as President Barack Obama and U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner spoke by phone on Tuesday after exchanging new proposals. It was latest sign of possible progress in efforts to avoid the automatic steep tax hikes and spending cuts set for January 1 unless Congress intervenes.

    White House and congressional aides confirmed that Obama gave Boehner a revised offer in talks on Monday, and the Republican responded with a counterproposal on Tuesday.

    In his proposal, Obama slightly reduced his demand for the amount of new tax revenue he was seeking to $1.4 trillion from $1.6 trillion over 10 years, congressional aides said. Boehner was no happier with that number, an aide said.

    READ MORE: http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/12/us-usa-fiscal-idUSBRE8A80WV20121212

    #519419
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    US economy could withstand brief fall off ‘cliff’
    By Christopher S. Rugaber
    Associated Press
    Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

    WASHINGTON— It’s the scenario that’s been spooking employers and investors and slowing the U.S. economy. Congress and the White House fail to strike a budget deal by New Year’s Day. Their stalemate triggers sharp tax increases and spending cuts. Those measures shrink consumer spending, stifle job growth, topple stock prices and push the economy off a “fiscal cliff” and into recession.

    READ MORE: http://business.inquirer.net/97885/us-economy-could-withstand-brief-fall-off-cliff

    #519420
    Coremodels
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    Don’t really care about this article…but the photo, along with the humbug headline, are great.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/humbug-fiscal-cliff-talks-expected-drag-christmas-article-1.1219541

    #519421
    rus
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    http://www.economist.com/news/leaders/21568382-barack-obama-must-do-more-avoid-economic-abyss-he-has-chance-fix-americas

    But there are still two big reasons for America—and the rest of the world—to worry. First, depending on the details of the deal, there could still be too great a fiscal squeeze in 2013. Second, and more important, entitlement spending is America’s biggest long-term fiscal challenge. Any fiscal deal must reform Social Security (pensions), Medicare (for the old) and Medicaid (for the poor). Mr Obama has been demanding tax increases of $1.6 trillion over the next ten years, but has offered entitlement cuts of only some $400 billion. He needs to increase the latter, to entice the Republicans into a deal and because it is the right thing to do.

    America has a chance to straighten out not just its finances, but also the highly polarised politics that underpin them. Republicans believe passionately that higher taxes will wreck the economy; no Republican in Congress has voted for higher income taxes since 1990. Democrats believe equally passionately in the sanctity of health-care and pension schemes for the old. The last time pensions were overhauled was in 1983. Since then politicians have added handouts even as medical costs have soared and the population has aged. The result is a gaping, and growing, fiscal hole. America’s underlying “structural” budget deficit is almost 7% of GDP. Among rich countries, only Japan’s is bigger.

    #519422

    Kid Rockafella
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    I’m getting sick of these worthless fucking republicans they are pieces of shit

    #519423
    Walker Evans
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    Kid Rockafella said:
    I’m getting sick of these worthless fucking republicans they are pieces of shit

    Let’s keep this discussion civil and on topic. Comments like these do nothing to stimulate productive conversation.

    #519424
    hugh59
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    Our government is spending more and appears to be giving us lower quality services; how long can this continue? Many people are so charged with partisan political energy that they don’t see the situation anymore; most of what they think about involves defending their “side” and attacking the other “side.”

    It amazes me at times how little some people really understand the other “side” in political discussions. Some people have a distorted view of who the other “side” is and what their views are. You need to look at multiple sources of information to get a better understanding of what is going on.

    For example, a few months ago, I read the Amity Shlaes book, THE FORGOTTEN MAN which was a criticism of FDR and the New Deal. One issue that received a lot of attention in this book involved the use of public utility companies to bring electricity to rural America. Now, I am reading Robert Caro’s book THE PATH TO POWER (volume 1 of his 5 volume biography of LBJ). This book goes into great detail about the failures of the system Shlaes was defending. It also describes what life was like in rural Texas in the 1930s before people had electricity.

    However, while Caro writes very favorably about many of FDR’s programs, he does not shy away from describing the patronage and cronyism that came along as the role of the federal government was expanded. Shlaes focused on the patronage and cronyism almost to the exclusion of the progress made by the New Deal programs. I am glad I have read both books (and that I watched the Ken Burns mini-series on the Dust Bowl); my understanding of these issues is better because I have information from several different sources.

    One problem today is that no one really knows what is going on inside the big government agencies anymore. Members of Congress and officials from the Administration only have a partial view of what is going.

    This is a problem even at the state level. I see it in my agency. The Governor appoints the Commissioner; the Commissioner appoints the Deputy Directors. The next level down consists of the Executive Administrators (EAs); they are the permanent senior administrators. Generally, the Commissioner and the Deputy Directors come from the outside; they end up relying entirely on information given to them by the EAs (and the less senior staff used by the EAs). Those of us the lower levels can get very frustrated by the fact that the senior administration does not really know what is going on in the Agency because the EAs are filtering the information that goes further up. Things are even worse at the Federal level; the federal agencies are many times larger.

    #519425
    Coremodels
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    My issue with the R’s continued suggestions are that they want to replace the automatic cuts that would hit defense and domestic spending with 100% cuts on domestic spending.

    Here’s an idea, quit building trillion dollar planes.

    #519426
    Snarf
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    Coremodels said:
    My issue with the R’s continued suggestions are that they want to replace the automatic cuts that would hit defense and domestic spending with 100% cuts on domestic spending.

    Here’s an idea, quit building trillion dollar planes.

    Trillion dollar planes are cooler than enabling millions of entitled moochers, dude. Why do you hate Amercia?

    #519427
    Coremodels
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    Snarf said:
    Trillion dollar planes are cooler than enabling millions of entitled moochers, dude. Why do you hate Amercia?

    moocher:

    #519428
    Snarf
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    Get a job, memaw!

    #519429
    Coremodels
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    Snarf said:
    Get a non-union job, memaw!

    :D

    #519430
    rus
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    Coremodels said:
    My issue with the R’s continued suggestions are that they want to replace the automatic cuts that would hit defense and domestic spending with 100% cuts on domestic spending.

    Here’s an idea, quit building trillion dollar planes.

    Those defense contracts provide jobs in congrescritters districts. That’s why it’s easier to get new high-tech machines, but things like body armor and rifle scopes take scandals. Less money in that.

    In essence, just a different sort of moocher.

    Yeah, definitely cut defense ( time to slash the USAF, personally ).

    Health care spending is still a problem, though, and if Obamacare turns out anything like Romneycare there won’t be much in the way of cost control.

    #519431
    Coremodels
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    I’m not a dove who wants a zero defense budget, for the record, I just don’t want to outspend Australia’s GDP on a single plane.

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