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US Government Shut Down - new elections for senate and house of rep.?


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It is not a myth, that the middle class has gotten weaker and the upper middle, or higher class has gotten stronger.

 

This has been going on far longer than the recent financial crisis. To lay this issue at the feed of the fed is to ignore all of the other influences.

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Just thinking out loud here.....   If people like soldiers and policeman can be legally charged with 'Dereliction Of Duty' for not performing the required responsibilities of their job then why can'

Wish you guys would quit playing the game. Bush only had a surplus because Clinton stripped Social Security while he was in office. Man you ideologues are atrocious. I am glad I am not part of this ci

I never suggesed you were evil. I simply pointed out that as a matter of recent and easily remembered historical fact you and your fellow registered Republicans bear full and undiluted responsibility

The shutdown still has had no impact on my life or the lives of anyone I know.

 

I find this statement surprising - aside from the "I'm alright Jack" sentiments, your presence on a science forum would indicate at least a cursory interest in science.

 

Virtually all public funds for science in the US are currently frozen. This is having a significant, long lasting impact on many, many aspects of scientific research. As a person working in science, virtually all of my colleagues are experiencing impacts. We personally had to cancel an experiment, as the mouse colony at the NIH funded institution we acquire them from had to be euthanased due to the technician employed to look after them was furloughed.

 

If you have an interest in science, I find it difficult to understand how you can claim it has "no impact" on you.

 

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2013/10/government-shutdown-affects-biomedical-research/

http://www.cnn.com/2013/10/03/opinion/urry-nasa-shutdown/index.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/01/government-shutdown-scientific-research_n_4025894.html

 

etc.

Edited by Arete
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I am not sure exactly how the consumer price index chart you showed reflects increases in insurance payments, health care, gas prices and asset prices that have occured in recent years.

Well, then I recommend you look them up prior to replying to my well supported and evidenced post with a tone of disagreement. Hint: Check out the difference between headline and core inflation.

 

It is not a myth, that the middle class has gotten weaker and the upper middle, or higher class has gotten stronger.

As swansont already mentioned, this is completely peripheral to my point, which was specific to quantitative easing. You're now discussing something else entirely.

 

Quantitative easing was and is an untried strategy, with unknown consequences...

Sorry, wrong again. At least you're consistent, though: http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2010/06/the-first-quantitative-easing-1930s/

 

It bothers me a bit that such a huge amount of money is created every month, and I get NONE of it.

Perhaps this is part of the problem. You clearly don't seem to understand how you are directly benefiting from these programs, but the simple fact is that your personal incredulity is hardly an argument against them. You ARE benefiting from these programs, TAR, no matter how forcefully you ignore that simple fact.

 

They can not allow interest rates to rise, or we can't pay our debts.

This is wrong on many levels. First, they can (and will) allow interest rates to rise. I covered this already in the previous post. Second, monetary policy is not responsible for debt payments. That comes from fiscal policy, which is handled by congress, not the Fed.

 

This summer they announced an intention to start tapering the amount of easing, and the market sold off, and interest rates started to climb, and they immediatly reversed, and promised the punch bowl would be available for the forseeable future and the market recovered and kept rising, in the face of bad economic news...

So, you're suggesting that you're upset that they based their decision on evidence and chose not to tank the economy until recovery strengthens? They chose to avoid further harming the economy after looking at the data. They were ready to pull back, and adjusted their approach to take a smarter one. They will continue to evaluate the economy and will take action when appropriate, not when it will result in more harm than good. How is this a problem, exactly?

 

 

We can't grow out of our debt problems, when we are barely growing at all.

I'm not sure why this is relevant in your argument against Fed action. To grow, we need fiscal policy, of which there is none. Congress refuses to act. The Fed is the only reason we have any growth at all right now, and they've essentially exhausted their ability to help with monetary policy. The point is that you're saying growth is important, and in the next breath you're beating down the Fed for taking steps to help growth. You are not expressing a logical position.

 

We have some structural problems, and we have some dependence problems, and I think we should be addressing them both.

I don't disagree, but one of the ways we're currently addressing them is through monetary policy, because fiscal policy has been so lacking from Congress.

 

The situation with the disability claims, reminds me of when the neighbor gets together and forms a neighborhood watch...

Nobody is talking about disability, FFS. That's a symptom. It's a result of unemployment insurance running out and people not able to find work. We need more fiscal policy, and more jobs. That is lacking because of an ineffectual congress. Until congress gets their thumbs out of their asses, monetary policy is all we have to use. Monetary policy involves lowering interest rates. They've done that, and it's helped. Monetary policy involves expansion of the Fed balance sheet. They've done that, too, and it's helped. Everything you're saying here is an argument IN FAVOR of what the Fed is doing, not against it... Yet you don't even realize it. It's a bit disheartening, really.

 

The value of a company does not change simply because the government is printing money. <snip> Printing money devalues savings and bonds. Printing money simply...

Wow. And despite correction just a few short hours ago, explaining what QE truly is and how it's false to consider it printing money, you continue to repeat the same falsehood about printing money. Good times.

Shutdown day 6 and 7:

The shutdown still has had no impact on my life or the lives of anyone I know.

More logical incoherence in your position. The markets continue to crash, and you continue to say, "No impact on me" in parallel with repeating already and easily refuted myths: http://www.businessinsider.com/the-stock-market-keeps-heading-lower-2013-10

And then there's this, too... but you know, whatevs... Ain't hurtin' you none, right?

 

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Edited by iNow
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If finger pointing actually got some result I would agree. The fact is, sadly, our the people in our government are not held accountable for what they screw up, even if it is criminal.
If legitimate accusations and assertions of misbehavior were not continually dismissed as "fingerpointing", results might be easier to obtain.

 

If there were less political advantage in the use of terms like "fingerpointing", and if the regular folks of the US were less gullible and less inclined to nod their heads and agree with miscreants and criminals who cover their asses with counter-accusations of "fingerpointing",

 

we might get more subpoenas and better government. Dick Cheney has never tesitified under oath about anything he did as VP - why not?

 

 

 

It is not a myth, that the middle class has gotten weaker and the upper middle, or higher class has gotten stronger.
That has been the major focus of leftwing economic analyisis of Reaganomics since the early 80s. Everybody on the left has been talking about that for thirty years. No it is not a myth - it is probably the major problem with the rightwing "conservative" economic nonsense that has bid fair to ruin the US economy since Reagan's election established it as official Federal policy and the frame of national economic analysis.

 

 

 

We have some structural problems, and we have some dependence problems, and I think we should be addressing them both. You might have seen the 60 Minutes on the huge amount of people on disability in West Virginia and Tennesee and Ohio.
That was a consequence of addressing the "dependence problem" of welfare and unemployment in places dominated by single industries, broken unions, and the resultant split into rich and poor, by cutting welfare and unemployment benefits rather than taxing the wealthy to pay for them. The move to SS disability rather than "welfare" or unemployment was a tax break for the local rich (the rich don't pay SS).

 

 

 

we are still in a tough situation, where less government spending and higher taxes for us all, are going to be required.
Higher taxes for the rich have been "required" for thirty years, by reason and sense - since they were cut, and the economy started to separate into rich and poor while public debt snowballed. This situation is not "tough" for the wealthy in the US, but bonanza - they haven't suffered from a recent debilitating recession, prices on stuff they want to buy have dropped relative to their burgeoning incomes - and there is no "we" in a setup where the highest incomes pay the lowest overall tax rates.

 

Less government spending is of course what we have been trying - overall government spending in the US has been flat or dropping, with local governments cutting back by as much or more than the Federal government has been pumping in as stimulus - and it has been doing exactly what the Keynesians predicted it would - suppress recovery from a depression caused by an equity trap.

 

By the way - notice in doG's graph above, post 146, that not only are the various debt ceiling increases labeled by President rather than Congress, and not only are they not ascribed to the Executive budgets they paid for or the Executive ventures that incurred the debts (Obama is assigned the 2009 budget and the Iraq War expenditures after 2008, for example), but the labels of "Democratic Control" and "Republican Control" are simply wrong.

 

In no sane world has the Congress been under "Democratic Control" at any time since 2000, just to pick the most obvious and unarguable example fresh in all our minds.

 

And this is typical - these people have not only set out to rewrite the history of the US to support their otherwise goofy approaches to stuff, but they have succeeded in creating a closed off arena of the political world in which that rewrite is the standard frame of reference. They have repeated these fantasies so often that they have come to accept them as their basic, assumed reality.

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Stonehenge, Nazca lines, crop circles, and the Pyramids all have several explanations from various people, including man-made and alien-made. Correlations are often interpreted as causal rather than random, because people want an explanation, and the same is true of political and economic events. In general, I believe politics and economics affect each other, but they are also affected by other things, which leads to uncertainty. Unfortunately, people become convinced that their belief is fact, and political battles ensue that lead to group-think decisions, which are almost inevitably poor ones.

 

Perhaps some day we will be able to analyze the social, political, economic weather, predict storm tracks, and ways to avoid them. In the mean time, we are locked in battles that seem to be perpetual and sometimes inane.

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Time for my daily update.

 

No impact on me personally. One of the guys in my lab said the NIST time clock is shutdown. I told him to use is cell phone. Crisis averted.

 

iNow makes it sound like the stock market is tanking, but the stock market has been between 14500 and 15500 for some time. No worries from me.

 

Also iNow, air quality is much better now than when I was in my 20s so there is no need to hold my breath. Water quality is also much better. It's only foolishness over CO2 that is killing the economy.

 

Arete, sorry the mice were put down. As a joke I almost said shame on you for experimenting on mice. There are always more mice, but the lost research was a shame. Tell your friends to get jobs in the private sector.

 

Since we are less than 10 days away from the debt ceiling being reached at least by the current FED prediction, perhaps we should be talking about that. Some people keep saying the US will go into default if the debt ceiling is reach, or at least technical default. Default however is prohibited by the 14th amendment which includes the following.

 

 

The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned.

 

So from the 14th amendment Social Security seems safe as a payment of pensions. Same with other government pensions. I doubt we have any payments left for rounding up Democrats responsible for the civil war. Other than that however debt payments come first. So what are we going to cut? Should entire departments be eliminated to service debt payments?

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Arete, sorry the mice were put down. As a joke I almost said shame on you for experimenting on mice. There are always more mice, but the lost research was a shame. Tell your friends to get jobs in the private sector.

 

 

There are more TLR7ko line mice just laying around? Let us know where and we'll be there.

 

The mice lines developed for biomedical research cost a considerable amount of money to develop, house and maintain. All of that taxpayer money was essentially wasted when they had to be culled. Not to mention the time wasted in re-establishing the lines once the funding kicks up again. This is happening all over science - and the effects will last much longer than the shutdown. If you work in science, or care about it you will be affected.

 

As for telling my friends to get jobs in the private sector - I'm going to assume you're scientifically literate enough to know the differences between basic an applied research, the importance of the former for the latter and the funding sources for both - and thus why that comment is rather myopic.

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Since we are less than 10 days away from the debt ceiling being reached at least by the current FED prediction, perhaps we should be talking about that. Some people keep saying the US will go into default if the debt ceiling is reach, or at least technical default. Default however is prohibited by the 14th amendment which includes the following.

 

So from the 14th amendment Social Security seems safe as a payment of pensions. Same with other government pensions. I doubt we have any payments left for rounding up Democrats responsible for the civil war. Other than that however debt payments come first. So what are we going to cut? Should entire departments be eliminated to service debt payments?

Everyone has their favorite cost cutting measure. One of mine is based on the experience we had from the 18th Amendment (prohibition) and 21st Amendment (repeal), which demonstrated that prohibition is not only expensive and creates criminals, but is futile. Similarly, the war on drugs is futile and expensive, it should be stopped. Addicts are people with medical problems, putting them in prison is IMO cruel and inhumane. I believe we could save considerable sums by paying drug counselors rather than prison guards, and giving drug addicts supervised access to drugs, to prevent them from killing themselves. This idea, of course, pushes an "Oh, my God NO," button with the moral majority and will never be done. I find it hard to believe they are willing to spend another $ Trillion on the war on drugs, but it seems inevitable.

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So from the 14th amendment Social Security seems safe as a payment of pensions. Same with other government pensions.

Unfortunately there is a debt ceiling law, and that law has to be followed. It doesn't matter that it looks to be unconstitutional. It isn't unconstitutional until the Supreme court decides that it is. Because of the constitution.

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Unfortunately there is a debt ceiling law, and that law has to be followed. It doesn't matter that it looks to be unconstitutional. It isn't unconstitutional until the Supreme court decides that it is. Because of the constitution.

I'm not sure I understand your point. Both the debt ceiling law and the 14th amendment can be enforced. We simply can't increase the debt or stop making interest payments. The only way to do that is to cut other government expenditures after paying interest on the debt. The government will continue to collect revenue, just not enough for paying interest on the debt and all other current expenditures. That means other current expenditures must be cut. As I mentioned, Social Security is a pension which is also protected by the 14th amendment. Also true for other government pensions. Also true for paying those that rounded up Democrats for causing the Civil War. So what is left? I ask again, what programs and government departments do we cut, and what ones do we eliminate?

 

Now do you understand why Republicans aren’t to worried about hitting the debt ceiling?

 

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/republicans-reject-debt-limit-doomsday-predictions/story?id=20500649

Edited by waitforufo
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Here's what is ACTUALLY shutdown, as well as the scale:

 

 

http://labs.enigma.io/shutdown2013/

 

There's also a handy ticker at the page above showing the lost salary by the second of furloughed workers.

There's a detail they got wrong. Exempt is indeed people who are getting paid from available funds, so they get paid now. The law enforcement/protecting life people are excepted, meaning they are not going to be paid until this is all settled. So the poorly-chosen color codes (Really? Subtly different shades of blue?) are correct in distinguishing them, but the terminology is wrong.

I'm not sure I understand your point. Both the debt ceiling law and the 14th amendment can be enforced. We simply can't increase the debt or stop making interest payments.

And these are mutually exclusive if you have no money left. Where do you get the money to pay the debts when there's no money?

 

The only way to do that is to cut other government expenditures after paying interest on the debt. The government will continue to collect revenue, just not enough for paying interest on the debt and all other current expenditures. That means other current expenditures must be cut. As I mentioned, Social Security is a pension which is also protected by the 14th amendment. Also true for other government pensions.

But you cannot simply invoke the 14th amendment. You have to argue it before the Supreme court and they have to rule on it, which takes time. Meanwhile you can't borrow any money to pay your bills.

 

Also true for paying those that rounded up Democrats for causing the Civil War.

I have no idea what this is supposed to mean. Aren't these people all dead?

 

Now do you understand why Republicans aren’t to worried about hitting the debt ceiling?

 

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/republicans-reject-debt-limit-doomsday-predictions/story?id=20500649

I think the republicans have no clear idea on how this all works. At best, the republicans in that link are saying "we don't know what will happen". We merely came close to hitting the debt ceiling in 2011 and it had an effect on the economy.

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And these are mutually exclusive if you have no money left. Where do you get the money to pay the debts when there's no money?

 

There is revenue, or money if you prefer, just not enough. So the interest on the debt has to be paid, as well as government pensions, and social security. Everything else is on the table for cuts or elimination.

 

 

But you cannot simply invoke the 14th amendment. You have to argue it before the Supreme court and they have to rule on it, which takes time. Meanwhile you can't borrow any money to pay your bills.

The 14th amendment is in the constitution. Can you provide a source where the constitution is found unconstitutional? You may have a chance with finding the debt ceiling unconstitutional. Maybe the Supreme Court would stay the debt ceiling while they decide but I dout it. Due to it's importance they would likely decide quickly. My guess is they would say congress has the power to pass such a law, but who knows.

 

Again, we have money just not enough. So we can pay some of our bills. We must follow the 14th ammendment first and then we can spend what is leftover and no more.

 

 

I have no idea what this is supposed to mean. Aren't these people all dead?

In part my comment on Democrats and the civil war is a joke. I only say in part because people keep compairing Republicans to pre Civil War confederates. Those pre Civil War Confederates were Democrats. I don't think we should ever forget the Democrats caused the death of 2% of the US population.

 

 

I think the republicans have no clear idea on how this all works. At best, the republicans in that link are saying "we don't know what will happen". We merely came close to hitting the debt ceiling in 2011 and it had an effect on the economy.

 

Republicans may not know, but they seem to be willing to find out.

Edited by waitforufo
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Some people keep saying the US will go into default if the debt ceiling is reach, or at least technical default. Default however is prohibited by the 14th amendment

Amendments to the Constitution do not govern physical reality, but rather Congressional and Executive behavior: So the 14th Amendment has already been violated by the Congressmen threatening default, the violation would be direct and explicit if default were to actually happen by their doing, and such a violation of their oath of office would seem to be reasonable grounds for immediate impeachment.

 

Also, the Executive Branch - charged with upholding the Constitution as it most explicitly is - is probably mandated to simply adopt whatever financial procedures it deems best to prevent default.

 

 

 

Republicans may not know, but they seem to be willing to find out

Yep. And the entire country has been warned, repeatedly, both by political analysts and numerous events, that modern Republican Party politicians are incapable of governing this country. So no one can say they are surprised, or that they didn't see this coming, or that they didn't know the Reps would act like this.

 

 

 

I only say in part because people keep compairing Republicans to pre Civil War confederates. Those pre Civil War Confederates were Democrats
You don't have to go back that far - a lot of recent modern Republican race baiters and Klan/Tea Party folks were themselves Democrats, in their own lifetimes. They switched Parties after Democrat Lyndon Johnson pushed through the laws forcing the abandonment of Jim Crow and legalized white supremacy in the US. Nixon and Reagan opened up the Republican Party to the Klan and their pals, and the Tea Party was born - although not yet named. Edited by overtone
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You don't have to go back that far - a lot of recent modern Republican race baiters and Klan/Tea Party folks were themselves Democrats, in their own lifetimes. They switched Parties after Democrat Lyndon Johnson pushed through the laws forcing the abandonment of Jim Crow and legalized white supremacy in the US. Nixon and Reagan opened up the Republican Party to the Klan and their pals, and the Tea Party was born - although not yet named.

 

So what you are saying is that the problem with the Republican party is Democrats?

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During the Civil War and afterward, I believe Southern Republicans became Democrats, because Lincoln was a elected as a Republican for his first term in office. I remember my family, who had been life long Southern Democrats switching to Republican when Kennedy first ran for president, because he was Catholic. Being Catholic to them was worse than being Republican. I don't know how many of them remembered that Lincoln had been a Republican, if any. Being a Democrat was tradition.

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So what you are saying is that the problem with the Republican party is Democrats?

Former Democrats, recruited by the likes of Nixon - yep, that's a lot of it. Throw in a few religious fanatics (Mormons, etc) and the wealthy corporate tax-hating elite, and you've pretty much covered the crowd.

 

The Dem Party, being an actual representative Party of the majority of the people in the US, managed them as a kind of embarrassing crazy relative - when they got too uppity, as with this guy http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Wallace, they were marginalilzed. But when Nixon realized he could take the White House with them, and brought them into the Republican fold, they were no longer marginal - they wre the key to power, the brownshirts and blackshirts of American fascism.

 

Now they've owned the Republican Party, and John Boehner is the Klan Tea Party's bitch.

 

Which is why that golf and booze enthusiast with the nice gated community home and the comfortable retirement beckoning is out there on the front of a pack of yammering trouble that wants to trash the US Presidency (current occupant) and default on the national debt.

Edited by overtone
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The 14th amendment is in the constitution. Can you provide a source where the constitution is found unconstitutional?

No, of course not, and I won't try because it would be pointless. This is not what I said, so I don't know what your point it.

 

Laws on the books are enforced even if they are later found to be unconstitutional. The people who get to decide if a law is unconstitutional is the supreme court, and nobody else. Not congress, not the president. Until that determination is made, you follow the law.

 

You may have a chance with finding the debt ceiling unconstitutional. Maybe the Supreme Court would stay the debt ceiling while they decide but I dout it. Due to it's importance they would likely decide quickly. My guess is they would say congress has the power to pass such a law, but who knows.

Up until such time that they struck down the law, we have a debt ceiling.

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iNow,

 

Our economy used to run OK without such increases in the Fed balance sheet.

 

The Fed would slow the velocity of money when things got too heated, and ease policy and loosen thing up when the economy slowed to much. They have a dual mandate of providing an enviroment that fosters growth and employment, without high inflation.

 

The untried strategy part, is what do you do, as a Fed, when you can't cut the Fed interest rate any lower, because its already nominally zero.

 

Now we are in untried territory, where the size of the monthly QE purchases are considered to have a slowing effect or a speeding effect, and this is where we are stuck, with the pedal not only to the floorboard, in terms of interest rate, but THROUGH the floorboard to the affect of 85 Billion dollars a month.

 

85 Billion dollars is a lot of money. People work and save for years to accumulate 10 thousand dollars, a life time to accumulate 100 thousand. And one group of men and women, tasked with regulating our money supply, by printing the required currency, and setting the Fed Funds rate, the rate at which banks can borrow money from the Fed, have now the ability to ADD liquidity to the market.

 

Emergency measures are one thing. QE 1 or QE 2, maybe. To kick start and get the engine running. But the money is not real, and can not be used as GAS itself. Not sustainably. Not without major warping of the ways that business is done. Not without wild dislocation of wealth and value.

 

Mom and Pop make the economy. You and I make the economy. We are the ones that buy and sell, add value and consume it.

 

Let me tell you a quick story. You always blame me for changing the topic or talking about something that is not at issue, but this, is in my estimation, the crux of our disagreements.

 

My grandfather used to buy a roll of tokens for Delaware bridge crossing for a discount of the normal 10 cent fare. He would give a token to visiting family members, for the return trip, over the bridge, to save us the 2 or 3 cents, familywise, and gift us the 7 1/2 cents person to person...A few months ago, I was crossing the Delaware and found myself, at a near empty toll plaza, in a stall, with no taker, with my dollar hanging out the window. It was an easy pass lane I had not recongnized, as I was engaged in thought and conversation about something else. I made eye contact with an unengaged taker a few booths down, and gave him a pleading look in the hopes he would recognize my willingness and desire to pay the toll, and my situation. He waved me disappointing on. I did not want to run the toll, but I had already made the mistake and had NO WAY to correct it, (as human to human, I should have been able to). I later had to pay 25 dollars through the mail, and I knew this, as I pulled from the toll, with the sinking feeling that EVERYTHING MY GRANDFATHER HAD DONE with the tokens for years and years, and cousins and cousins and aunts and uncles, was wiped away, unjustly.

 

85 Billion Dollars is a lot of normal, person to person or business to business, or state to state, or nation to nation transactions. And we have been doing this, for how many months now?

 

How many decisions and actions of yours and mine are nullified or maginalized by the strokes of government pens? The changing of rules, the changing of the game. False stuff, which wipes away years of playing by the old ones.

 

Regards, TAR2

Edited by tar
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And? Any of these have a threatened shutdown, or actual shutdown?

 

No, you're right....dems vs dems hasn't threatened any shutdowns, just exponential increases in spending. The country is living beyond its means...

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Personally I'm hoping they continue this shutdown business way past the deadline date, which I understand is 17th October. Since I further understand the consequences would be to dissuade lenders from lending, with the long term possibility of the western economic system turning away from living beyond its means by being based of shedloads of borrowed money.

 

Doubtless there'll be a painful transition period, but in the long term it'll be for the common good.

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Ok, here is one solution to the shutdown and debt ceiling impasse: Social Security payments are based on one's prior earnings, not on what one needs to collect from the Government to live on. If some people were willing to accept smaller payments from Social Security, the money that they did not collect would go into an account that could be inherited by their children or other designated heirs. Money passed on to heirs is subject to an inheritance or estate tax. So this scheme would serve two purposes: enable the government to recover some of the benefit payments via the estate tax, and reduce the size of the Social Security outlays that will need be paid to the "baby boomer" generation, as such outlays will be deferred until they die, and then will be paid to their heirs.

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I think you came up with something that EVERY congressman would vote against.

 

In part my comment on Democrats and the civil war is a joke. I only say in part because people keep compairing Republicans to pre Civil War confederates. Those pre Civil War Confederates were Democrats. I don't think we should ever forget the Democrats caused the death of 2% of the US population.

It's obvious to me that your main purpose is trolling, but never thought you actually believed you were making a serious point with this. Do you really need to be taught how stupid this is or are you just having fun? I think the latter, but I thought I would ask.

 

 

Republicans may not know, but they seem to be willing to find out.

This is why shielding yourself with children works

Edited by john5746
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Ok, here is one solution to the shutdown and debt ceiling impasse: Social Security payments are based on one's prior earnings, not on what one needs to collect from the Government to live on.

Would never work and never get voted for. Like so many things, such Social Security seems a excellent idea at the time and easy to get into, but not quite so easy to get out of, should it be required.

 

Here in the UK they've just established a 'help to buy' scheme for house purchase. We all know that'll increase house prices and so the thing that struck me was: if at sometime in the future they want to scrap it because it's costing too much money due to defaults, how would they do it? Simply scrapping it would pull the rug and doubtless result in negative equity, large debts and possible destitution. But seemed a good idea at the time.

 

It seems to me that in the end the culmination of all these grand ideas end up like the subject of this thread: shutdown, political intransigence, TEA parties, defaults and bankruptcy.

 

How is American going to get out of this deadlock? I don't know anything about the American constitution, but maybe the President can threaten the use of some ultimate presidential power to force heads together. But whether such a power exists, perhaps others might know.

Edited by Delbert
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How is American going to get out of this deadlock? I don't know anything about the American constitution, but maybe the President can threaten the use of some ultimate presidential power to force heads together. But whether such a power exists, perhaps others might know.

 

Others have mentioned here the 14th amendment, specifically section 4, which states that,

 

"Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void."

 

The claim, from what I can tell, is that Obama has emergency powers to override Congress under the above amendment, though he himself has rejected this idea and the Washington legal counsel say that he does not have this power in the first place. From what I have read, it seems that even assuming he does (and it appears to me that this is true), executing the debt-ceiling laws under the Constitution would break other laws set by Congress and therefore be unconstitutional in and of itself. However, if Republicans won't give and no compromise is made, essentially anything that Obama does would be unconstitutional in some way, so he would have to pick the least bad option (invoke the 14th amendment and raise the debt ceiling) and simply risk impeachment. This article elaborates on it in more detail.

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