Raising the Debt Ceiling

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  1. #181

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    Quote Originally Posted by woodsrider View Post
    Compromise is for married couples. We didn't need compromise, we needed our leaders to make the tough choices and balance the budget with deep cuts. This bill was a waste of everyones time.
    Are there times when a balanced budget amendment would be harmful to the country/economy?
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  2. #182

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    Quote Originally Posted by KyTmcNcc View Post
    Compromise VOR , That is why it is good for the country .
    Compromise doesn't neccessarily mean it's good for the country. I think they could have made it good for the country if we had leaders in Washington with courage.

  3. #183
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    I have followed this whole debt ceiling story pretty closely for the last couple of weeks, but admittedly still don't understand everything about it. I may or may not be accurate in saying that raising the debt ceiling is essentially allowing us to borrow more money to pay our bills. From what I understand, passage of this bill will allow us to pay said bills until the start of 2013--to the tune of just over $2 trillion. And, from what I understand, we have made spending cuts over the next decade that are about equal to the amount we've raised the debt ceiling for the rest of this year and all of next. If all that is correct (and I acknowledge that it may very well not be), it doesn't seem to me like we've made all that much progress as it relates to the national deficit. Because when this deal comes up again around Thanksgiving/Christmas of 2012, we're going to have to vote to raise the ceiling again. And when we raise it again (and then again and again in later years), we're back to adding to the deficit rather than reducing it.

    In principle, I think I probably agree with what woodsrider said in #180 about the need for "tough choices" and "balance" to the budget and "deep cuts" (in spending). I would add the need for increased revenue, some of which would come through the highest tax bracket--taking them, say from 35% to 38% (I think they're currently at 35%)--and also by closing the mortgage interest deduction or something along those lines. I am admittedly a very far right person, politically speaking. I hear a lot of my far right brothers & sisters talk about cuts & balanced budgets and I agree with them. But if we really want to reduce this deficit--if we're serious about getting out of this hole--then we have to increase revenue.

    But as I've said earlier, while I believe that in principle, I question how effective increased revenues would be in the current political climate, given the spending habits of the Oval Office & Congress. I believe firmly that we need increased revenue along with these other things, but only if we really, really use said revenue to get out of debt.

    If I'm a Congressman from Kentucky, and if my understanding of this bill is accurate, I probably would vote against it. But again, I'm not sure if I have it fully and properly understood.

  4. #184

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    Quote Originally Posted by 75center View Post
    Compromise doesn't neccessarily mean it's good for the country. I think they could have made it good for the country if we had leaders in Washington with courage.
    And in this case it took Courage to compromise .

  5. #185
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randy Parker View Post
    I have followed this whole debt ceiling story pretty closely for the last couple of weeks, but admittedly still don't understand everything about it. I may or may not be accurate in saying that raising the debt ceiling is essentially allowing us to borrow more money to pay our bills. From what I understand, passage of this bill will allow us to pay said bills until the start of 2013--to the tune of just over $2 trillion. And, from what I understand, we have made spending cuts over the next decade that are about equal to the amount we've raised the debt ceiling for the rest of this year and all of next. If all that is correct (and I acknowledge that it may very well not be), it doesn't seem to me like we've made all that much progress as it relates to the national deficit. Because when this deal comes up again around Thanksgiving/Christmas of 2012, we're going to have to vote to raise the ceiling again. And when we raise it again (and then again and again in later years), we're back to adding to the deficit rather than reducing it.

    In principle, I think I probably agree with what woodsrider said in #180 about the need for "tough choices" and "balance" to the budget and "deep cuts" (in spending). I would add the need for increased revenue, some of which would come through the highest tax bracket--taking them, say from 35% to 38% (I think they're currently at 35%)--and also by closing the mortgage interest deduction or something along those lines. I am admittedly a very far right person, politically speaking. I hear a lot of my far right brothers & sisters talk about cuts & balanced budgets and I agree with them. But if we really want to reduce this deficit--if we're serious about getting out of this hole--then we have to increase revenue.

    But as I've said earlier, while I believe that in principle, I question how effective increased revenues would be in the current political climate, given the spending habits of the Oval Office & Congress. I believe firmly that we need increased revenue along with these other things, but only if we really, really use said revenue to get out of debt.

    If I'm a Congressman from Kentucky, and if my understanding of this bill is accurate, I probably would vote against it. But again, I'm not sure if I have it fully and properly understood.
    The flip side of the coin that many do not wish to acknowledge.

    If we want to simply posture and show off our conservative colors, we don't mention this (and to be fair, the same applies to those on the far left who only want to increase taxes/revenues).

    But as you said, if we're SERIOUS about reducing the deficit; it takes two (cut spending, raise revenue) to tango.

  6. #186
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcpapa View Post
    The flip side of the coin that many do not wish to acknowledge.

    If we want to simply posture and show off our conservative colors, we don't mention this (and to be fair, the same applies to those on the far left who only want to increase taxes/revenues).

    But as you said, if we're SERIOUS about reducing the deficit; it takes two (cut spending, raise revenue) to tango.
    2011 revenue projects ($2.17 trillion) are pretty much equal to 2005 revenue ($2.15 trillion). Spending on the other hand is up 54% from 2005 levels, $3.8 versus $2.47 trillion. Had we adjusted spending to coincede with revenue drops we wouldn't be in nearly the the shambles we are now. It's a lot easier to make up $500 billion short fall than $1.6 trillion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by woodsrider View Post
    2011 revenue projects ($2.17 trillion) are pretty much equal to 2005 revenue ($2.15 trillion). Spending on the other hand is up 54% from 2005 levels, $3.8 versus $2.47 trillion. Had we adjusted spending to coincede with revenue drops we wouldn't be in nearly the the shambles we are now. It's a lot easier to make up $500 billion short fall than $1.6 trillion.
    Curious question: How much of the expenditure rise is inflation? For example: weapons that cost X in 2005 probably cost much more in 2011.

    The reverse to your statement seems true as well: If we had adjusted revenue streams to coincide with spending we wouldn't be quite in the shambles we are now either.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KyTmcNcc View Post
    And in this case it took Courage to compromise .
    Disagree, I think it was cya.

  9. #189
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    If we just eliminate tax credits - don't even touch tax rates - eliminating credits alone would give us $1 trillion.

    How about we get rid of the big tax cut Bush put in place for estate taxes? How much would that give us? And all we are doing is returning to the same tax rates we had in place before Bush cut them?

    My only concern about tax increases and/or eliminating tax decreases and credits is that it will take the focus off of cuts and making the tough decisions. That is supposed to be how it works in Republican supply side theory isn't it? Reduce taxes, cut off the revenue, government will shrink. Yet we have seen over the past 30 years that just reducing taxes and supposedly drying up revenues does not reduce spending. In fact, since 2000 we have reduced taxes BUT increased spending!! That is with 6 years of Republican control of Washington. So my point is keep taxes low and keep us on the edge so there is no choice but to focus on reducing spending.

  10. #190
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    Quote Originally Posted by Voice of Reason View Post
    If we just eliminate tax credits - don't even touch tax rates - eliminating credits alone would give us $1 trillion.
    My fear with that is I think you hurt more middle class people by eliminating tax credits. I have no data to back that up, but I would think it would sting the middle class much more so than the upper. I'm thinking you raise the tax rates back to what they were during the Clinton years, or somewhere close to that. But again, I have no figures or stats. If someone does have this info, please provide it.

    I honestly think our problem is about 65%-70% in spending. Dramatically reducing spending will help the country greatly. But the other 30% or so is revenue. We have to have more of it--at least until we start actually reducing this monstrosity of a deficit.

  11. #191
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    I have another question that some of you might be able to answer. When we were running surpluses during the late 1990's, what happened to the surplus money? Did we utilize it to pay off some of our debts, or did something else happen to it?

  12. #192
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randy Parker View Post
    My fear with that is I think you hurt more middle class people by eliminating tax credits. I have no data to back that up, but I would think it would sting the middle class much more so than the upper. I'm thinking you raise the tax rates back to what they were during the Clinton years, or somewhere close to that. But again, I have no figures or stats. If someone does have this info, please provide it.

    I honestly think our problem is about 65%-70% in spending. Dramatically reducing spending will help the country greatly. But the other 30% or so is revenue. We have to have more of it--at least until we start actually reducing this monstrosity of a deficit.
    I have been on the add revenue side of the argument with you, but I just don't trust our leaders to make the tough decisions. So I have come to believe it is better for now to keep revenue low, keep taxes where they are and let this deficit put so much pressure on DC that they have no choice but to act on spending. Look what it took to get this bill enacted and all everyone is doing is complaining about it. Give them more money and they won't make the tough decisions. I know I am contradicting my statements above about the failure of supply side theory and reducing revenue, but I think we are in such a hole financially and it is so apparent to voters that it is better to keep taxes where they are and keep the pressure on.

  13. #193
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    Quote Originally Posted by Voice of Reason View Post
    I have been on the add revenue side of the argument with you, but I just don't trust our leaders to make the tough decisions. So I have come to believe it is better for now to keep revenue low, keep taxes where they are and let this deficit put so much pressure on DC that they have no choice but to act on spending. Look what it took to get this bill enacted and all everyone is doing is complaining about it. Give them more money and they won't make the tough decisions. I know I am contradicting my statements above about the failure of supply side theory and reducing revenue, but I think we are in such a hole financially and it is so apparent to voters that it is better to keep taxes where they are and keep the pressure on.
    Oh, I wholeheartedly agree. I guess I'm speaking more in theory, and not in practicality.

    FWIW, Bill O'Reilly essentially stated the same thing that I'm saying about the need for increased revenue. He, however, is calling for a flat tax & some kind of national sales tax. Says the far right needs to wake up & realize the need for revenue.

  14. #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hatz View Post
    Curious question: How much of the expenditure rise is inflation? For example: weapons that cost X in 2005 probably cost much more in 2011.

    The reverse to your statement seems true as well: If we had adjusted revenue streams to coincide with spending we wouldn't be quite in the shambles we are now either.
    Good question but one I don't know the answer too. I would have a hard time believing it was 54% over that time period. Revenue streams are down because of the economy. The problem is when things started tanking the feds tried to spend our way out. How's that worked? When Bush's cuts went into effect in 2003 revenue increased an average of almost 6% until the crash in 2008. Had the crash not happened and revenue continued to increase at the same rate revenue for 2011 would be at about $3.2 trillion. Revenue is a problem right now but not because taxes aren't high enough, it's because of the economy.

  15. #195
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randy Parker View Post
    My fear with that is I think you hurt more middle class people by eliminating tax credits. I have no data to back that up, but I would think it would sting the middle class much more so than the upper. I'm thinking you raise the tax rates back to what they were during the Clinton years, or somewhere close to that. But again, I have no figures or stats. If someone does have this info, please provide it.

    I honestly think our problem is about 65%-70% in spending. Dramatically reducing spending will help the country greatly. But the other 30% or so is revenue. We have to have more of it--at least until we start actually reducing this monstrosity of a deficit.
    Going back to the Clinton tax rates would be a huge increase on the middle class.

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