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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 1:37 pm 
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TheValuesVoter wrote:
They could have accepted a deal with the President that would have cut the deficit by four trillion dollars with a mixture of 2.8 trillion in spending cuts and 1.2 trillion in taxes that would not have increased the tax rate. That would not have hurt the economy nearly as much as the Washington Temper Tantrum.

They could have resisted the urge to walk away from multiple negotiations, acts that, in themselves, helped make our government look extremely immature. Especially when you combine this drama with the near-shutdown in the spring (which, even though it didn't happen, has a devastating impact on small businesses in my area, where the local economy feeds heavily on both the federal government and government contractors. When there is uncertainty and drama in DC, no one wants to spend money).

They should not have repeatedly communicated a willingness to see the country go into default or expressed skepticism that anything bad would happen if no deal was reached or if negotiations dragged on and on.

This.

Republicans only had two viable options. The first was to recognize that they didn't control everything and couldn't have everything their way, and therefore do what was best for the economy (and therefore, for the country as a whole) and work to win 2012. That's exactly what VV is describing here.

The second was to insist certain principles be non-negotiable--in this case, raising ANY taxes (including, apparently, closing tax loopholes)--and then insist that a deal be made that sufficiently closed the deficit within that framework.

Instead, they threw a temper-tantrum, made the country look bad, got a talking point saying that tax cuts are off the table (even though the "super committee" will be considering them), and STILL didn't get a deal that sufficiently closed the deficit.

In other words, everyone loses. So as far as I'm concerned, if we all have to lose because the economy is tanking, they ought to lose in November as well.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 1:46 pm 
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Jac3510 wrote:
TheValuesVoter wrote:
They could have accepted a deal with the President that would have cut the deficit by four trillion dollars with a mixture of 2.8 trillion in spending cuts and 1.2 trillion in taxes that would not have increased the tax rate. That would not have hurt the economy nearly as much as the Washington Temper Tantrum.

They could have resisted the urge to walk away from multiple negotiations, acts that, in themselves, helped make our government look extremely immature.
Especially when you combine this drama with the near-shutdown in the spring (which, even though it didn't happen, has a devastating impact on small businesses in my area, where the local economy feeds heavily on both the federal government and government contractors. When there is uncertainty and drama in DC, no one wants to spend money).

They should not have repeatedly communicated a willingness to see the country go into default or expressed skepticism that anything bad would happen if no deal was reached or if negotiations dragged on and on.

This.

Republicans only had two viable options. The first was to recognize that they didn't control everything and couldn't have everything their way, and therefore do what was best for the economy (and therefore, for the country as a whole) and work to win 2012. That's exactly what VV is describing here.

The second was to insist certain principles be non-negotiable--in this case, raising ANY taxes (including, apparently, closing tax loopholes)--and then insist that a deal be made that sufficiently closed the deficit within that framework.

Instead, they threw a temper-tantrum, made the country look bad, got a talking point saying that tax cuts are off the table (even though the "super committee" will be considering them), and STILL didn't get a deal that sufficiently closed the deficit.

In other words, everyone loses. So as far as I'm concerned, if we all have to lose because the economy is tanking, they ought to lose in November as well.


My understanding was that the President had the temper tantrum and walked out. Hmm...

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 1:54 pm 
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justgrace wrote:
How can 1.2 trillion taxes not have increased the tax rate? Why should we trust government to ever lower taxes? Increasing taxes, as you know, would have really upset those voters who sent the Republicans to Congress on their promise not to raise taxes.

If I recall correctly, $800 billion of that came from closing tax loopholes and then was going to be used to lower the individual rates. The other $400 billion came because Saxby Chambliss' gang of six lunacy proposed $1.2 trillion in new taxes (which included, by the way, increasing the capital gains tax!). Obama backed off the original deal he was making with Boehner and insisted on the extra $400 billion to match what Chambliss was offering in the Senate. Politically, he had to do that. So a large part of the failure of that deal falls squarely on Chambliss and the rest of the gang of six.

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My understanding was that the President had the temper tantrum and walked out. Hmm...

So the Republican apologists like to insist. Bear in mind that the truth is usually somewhere in the middle. Yes, Obama backed out, but that was because Chambliss essentially put a deal on the table that the left was much more comfortable with (since it included a lot higher tax increases).

fdit:

and with reference to those TP members who signed their "no new taxes" pledge, that was just their own idiocy. You NEVER say would you will NEVER do. Remember the video of Huckabee telling his congress that he'd be willing to sign a sales tax increase, and remember him getting blasted for it?

What they OUGHT to have done is say, "I oppose all tax increases. There are also other things I'm opposed to, like destroying our country's credit rating. I'll do everything I can to ensure that we can save the credit rating without raising taxes, but keep in mind that Obama is the President. The credit rating agencies are going to require us to cut the deficit. We WILL do that. We will make the first steps necessary to buy us a few more years to do what we really need to. So vote for me so that we can get things going in the right direction, and the vote out Obama and the Dem Senate in '12 and then we can really fix the tax code to make the US more competitive in the world."

Unfortunately, while that is the honest truth, such a speech would get you called a liberal and you could never win a Republican primary, not because Republicans are more conservative, but because they're just anti-tax, anti-Obama zealots.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:01 pm 
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Here is an article on the famous temper tantrum. I do not think Politico is particularly a Republican source.

Quote:
Angry that Republicans are refusing to cave in to his demands for tax increases on job creators, President Obama threw a temper tantrum and stormed out of debt-ceiling negotiations with GOP leaders Wednesday.

Politico reported:
President Barack Obama abruptly walked out of a stormy debt-limit meeting with congressional leaders Wednesday, throwing into serious doubt the already shaky negotiations, according to GOP sources
“He shoved back and said ‘I’ll see you tomorrow’ and walked out,” House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) told reporters in the Capitol after the meeting.
Andrew Stiles reported at National Review Online that House Majority Leader Eric Cantor grew frustrated with the Administrations insistence on higher taxes and dwindling spending cuts.


Cantor said he told the president that the two sides remain so far apart at this point that he doubted they could get to $2.5 trillion in cuts (to match the debt increase requested by the administration, enough to get through the 2012 election) given the time available. President Obama has said he will not sign any increase to the debt ceiling less than that amount, and Cantor had previously insisted that the House would vote no more than one time to increase the debt limit. Cantor said he was willing to abandon his position in order to allow some kind of short-term measure to increase the debt limit and reassure credit markets while negotiations continue, and asked the president if he would be willing to consider this option.

At this point, Cantor explained, the president became “very agitated” and said he had “sat here long enough,” that “Ronald Reagan wouldn’t sit here like this” and “something’s got to give.” Obama then told Republicans they either needed to compromise on their insistence on a dollar for dollar ratio of spending cuts to debt increase or agree to a “grand bargain” including massive tax increases. Before walking out of the room, Cantor said, the president told him: “Eric, don’t call my bluff. I’m going to the American people with this.” He then “shoved back” and said “I’ll see you tomorrow.”

The Chicago Tribune reported that Obama would not yield even if it meant ending his presidency, according to a Republican aide:
"I have reached the point where I say enough," Obama said, according to the aide. "Would Ronald Reagan be sitting here? I've reached my limit. This may bring my presidency down, but I will not yield on this."


A post at the conservative blog Hot Air notes that Democrats have a different take on Obama's actions, and naturally blamed it on Republicans:

The Democratic spin on what happened is that Cantor “rudely” interrupted The One mid-finger-wag and he got huffy and walked out. As for what he means by “going to the American people,” I don’t want to get my hopes up but we might be in store for another 45-minute lecture tomorrow morning about corporate jets.

“Cantor’s account of tonight’s meeting is completely overblown. For someone who knows how to walk out of a meeting, you’d think he know it when he saw it,” an unnamed Democratic aide told Politico.

“Cantor rudely interrupted the president three times to advocate for short-term debt ceiling increases while the president was wrapping the meeting. This is just more juvenile behavior from him and Boehner needs to rein him in, and let the grown-ups get to work.“


Obama's tantrum confirms what Florida Republican Allen West told Fox News earlier this week:
“My concern is that we have a President that is not willing to do his job and that is to prioritize the spending. That he is digging in his heels, being very intransigent, and he’s being a rigid ideologue. And he must understand that every single one of his economic policies have failed. So I think it’s time that he realize that he does not have the moral high ground in this argument."

On Tuesday, the President said senior citizens may not see their August Social Security checks unless a deal was reached, but Stephen Goss, the Social Security actuary, confirmed such a decision rested with the Administration.
...

http://www.examiner.com/conservative-in ... gotiations

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:15 pm 
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You're talking about the first set of negotiations. I am talking about the second set that we developing over the July 22 weekend.

See more here: http://swampland.time.com/2011/07/23/th ... d-bargain/

(First link I found on the story)

Fact is, they could have come up with something. They chose not to.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:20 pm 
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justgrace wrote:
Quote:
They could have accepted a deal with the President that would have cut the deficit by four trillion dollars with a mixture of 2.8 trillion in spending cuts and 1.2 trillion in taxes that would not have increased the tax rate. That would not have hurt the economy nearly as much as the Washington Temper Tantrum.


How can 1.2 trillion taxes not have increased the tax rate? Why should we trust government to ever lower taxes?


My understanding was that this would come by closing loopholes. Which is somewhat easy for me to believe given that GE paid no taxes the year before last and I know of another large company that paid less than 3% in taxes.

If those loopholes were closed, these companies would pay a more reasonable percentage of their profits in taxes (let's say it were 8-10%, which is still a much more enviable rate than what most of us currently pay). However, this would not constitute a tax rate increase as the rates would not be increased at all for individuals nor for businesses but the increased revenue would come in the form of elimination of some of the loopholes that allow for larger businesses to pay very little or nothing.


Quote:
Increasing taxes, as you know, would have really upset those voters who sent the Republicans to Congress on their promise not to raise taxes.


I have a great deal of respect for all your comments, JG, and think you are always insightful - so please don't misread my response to this particular comment as being negative - I think very highly of your insights. But this is the third time during this thread that I've heard someone comment sympathetically about the potential backlash that politicians would have to face from voters.

Honestly, the last thing on my mind - or on the minds of most voters - is sympathy for the political careers of our elected representatives. Do I care more about Grover Norquist hammering someone for doing something that in his mind violated his "No Tax Pledge" or about a solution being reached that preserved our nation's credit rating and met most of our goals? It's not even close - they need to do the right thing regardless. Let me remind you and everyone here that these are the same people who hammered Huckabee and actually prevented a President Huckabee from taking office in 2009. They attacked him because he did dare to do the right thing when he was Governor, balancing a budget and making the necessary improvements to his own infrastructure - even if it meant finding some ways to bring in new revenue - and even if it meant displeasing the holy mandates of the so-called fiscal conservatives whose first, second, and third priorities are about taxes, taxes, and taxes. Huckabee has the ... let's just say testicular fortitude ... to do what's in the best interests of his constituency even if it means that some professional critics attack him. I certainly can't say the same thing about some of our congressional leaders.

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Whether they are income taxes or other taxes, this would not help anything. There are not enough wealthy (or whoever the Democrats and the President wanted to skim more revenue from) to even make a dent. I do approve of closing loopholes. The Fair Tax would bring in a much more equitable and honest taxation. Now, nearly 50% pay zero income taxes! With the Fair Tax, the approximately $13 trillion tax-sheltered dollars hid offshore would come home to the economy.


I also oppose tax rate increases and hate the Democratic mantra of "taxing the rich" (which includes a lot of people who are not rich). I support the Fair Tax. But until we get it, one way of reducing the deficit is to close the loopholes. I also dislike the fact that half the country pay no income taxes - very unfair.

But, there is a time and a place and a way to get every goal met. This Temper Tantrum stunt did not meet the goal. Not only are we now in an even more dire economic state than we were in a couple of weeks ago - amazingly - but there will be less of a chance of getting spending cuts passed in the future because the public blames the GOP more than the President and there absolutely will be members of Congress who pay the price next November.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:25 pm 
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I do not really want to be drawn into a back and forth defense of people who are not perfect. But please remember that many of us here may have leanings toward some of the Tea Party ideals, if not all their actions. (I would think most of us do agree with them more than with the socialistic ideas of this President!) Isn't it wrong to call these honest citizens who feel they are being overtaxed and forgotten "idiots?"

Quote:
What they OUGHT to have done is say, "I oppose all tax increases. There are also other things I'm opposed to, like destroying our country's credit rating. I'll do everything I can to ensure that we can save the credit rating without raising taxes, but keep in mind that Obama is the President. The credit rating agencies are going to require us to cut the deficit. We WILL do that. We will make the first steps necessary to buy us a few more years to do what we really need to. So vote for me so that we can get things going in the right direction, and the vote out Obama and the Dem Senate in '12 and then we can really fix the tax code to make the US more competitive in the world."

Unfortunately, while that is the honest truth, such a speech would get you called a liberal and you could never win a Republican primary, not because Republicans are more conservative, but because they're just anti-tax, anti-Obama zealots.


The truth is that the ideals with which people go into office run up abruptly and sometimes brutally against the "establishment" and ways of Washington, D.C. The mindset of much of Washington politicians is tax, tax, tax, spend, spend, spend. These freshmen and women are learning quickly. Yes, they may seem a bit brash in their naivite. But they are trying to stick to principle.

As Governor Huckabee has said, you have to win the victories by stages. Like in a football game, gaining yardage.

I have also heard on Cavuto, etc. that the Standard and Poor's has been hinting even before the budget deal of lowering our credit rating. The past couple of years under this administration have seen the debt raise at an alarming rate. President Obama cannot blame the Tea Party. Most of this debt increase came about before they were even elected.
We need more of the citizen-type of candidates. But changing what has become dug-in in Congress and the toxic climate of Washington D.C. will not happen overnight.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:36 pm 
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I can believe that President Obama had a temper tantrum and walked out. I also believe that the GOP had a temper tantrum and walked out. Like I have said over and over again, they're ALL responsible. I never said or implied that President Obama didn't bear responsibility; others have hinted that the GOP leaders bore little responsibility.

Our Congressional leaders acted like little children. Making an argument that the President also acted like a child does not indemnify either side. Voters are likely to give all of them a timeout on the next election day.

Watching them all blame each other reminds me of watching a bunch of kids point fingers at each other ... "HE STARTED IT!!!"

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:39 pm 
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justgrace wrote:
I do not really want to be drawn into a back and forth defense of people who are not perfect. But please remember that many of us here may have leanings toward some of the Tea Party ideals, if not all their actions. (I would think most of us do agree with them more than with the socialistic ideas of this President!) Isn't it wrong to call these honest citizens who feel they are being overtaxed and forgotten "idiots?"

I haven't called anyone an idiot. I would appreciate it if you didn't attribute things to me I didn't say. What I DID say was that Boehner's plan was idiotic, and it was. HE is in the gov't. HE KNEW that the S&P was going to downgrade us if he signed a deal for less than $4 trillion in spending cuts.

Obama's actions were idiotic, too. I assume that goes without saying here. My frustration here is with the defense of the indefensible Republican actions.

Quote:
The truth is that the ideals with which people go into office run up abruptly and sometimes brutally against the "establishment" and ways of Washington, D.C. The mindset of much of Washington politicians is tax, tax, tax, spend, spend, spend. These freshmen and women are learning quickly. Yes, they may seem a bit brash in their naivite. But they are trying to stick to principle.

Then they had the wrong ideals. "Anti-tax" isn't an ideal. At least, not a proper one. The gov't NEEDS taxes to run. The proper ideal is efficiency in gov't and a fair tax system. Sometimes, that means that you may have to accept a tax raise for a time so that you can win the bigger argument down the road, like Huckabee did. But cowering before Grover Norquist? No, that's not an ideal worth fighting for. That's just same-old-Washington, only this time, instead of the special interest group we're pandering to being the labor unions (what Republicans are always complaining about), it's the Club for Growth. But since that's a "right-wing" interest group, apparently, it's excusable--neigh, defensible!

Garbage. Bottom line is those TP members are no different from the rest of them. They are more interested in their careers in Washington than in doing the right thing. Don't make your base mad! Don't upset your special interest! You might get fired!

THAT'S the problem with our country. THAT is the lack of leadership that resulted in our downgrade. And so long as any one of us make ourselves a part of one of those special interest "bases," we're just as much to blame.

Quote:
As Governor Huckabee has said, you have to win the victories by stages. Like in a football game, gaining yardage.

Correct, but if they had stuck by that principle, then Grover would have attacked them in the primaries. They were more interested in their jobs than in doing what was RIGHT.

Quote:
I have also heard on Cavuto, etc. that the Standard and Poor's has been hinting even before the budget deal of lowering our credit rating. The past couple of years under this administration have seen the debt raise at an alarming rate. President Obama cannot blame the Tea Party. Most of this debt increase came about before they were even elected.
We need more of the citizen-type of candidates. But changing what has become dug-in in Congress and the toxic climate of Washington D.C. will not happen overnight.

Which requires people being willing to go to Washington and doing the right thing, not voting to keep their jobs for a bill that they know will destroy the economy.

Bottom line: they Republicans backed a plan THEY KNEW would destroy the economy, all so they could get reelected. It's absolutely disgusting, and all of them need to go. You people keep defending them. They'll never change. Not now, not overnight, not ever, because you won't make them. You keep letting them get away with using you to get elected, and now WE have to pay the price.

Thanks

edit:

By the way, the stock market is now down almost 500 points. Whether you like it or not, in defending Republican behavior by pointing the finger at Obama, THAT is what you are defending. You're justifying a 4% loss in the market in one day. This could very well end up pushing us formally into that second dip we've been talking about for so long.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:54 pm 
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TheValuesVoter wrote:
justgrace wrote:
Quote:
They could have accepted a deal with the President that would have cut the deficit by four trillion dollars with a mixture of 2.8 trillion in spending cuts and 1.2 trillion in taxes that would not have increased the tax rate. That would not have hurt the economy nearly as much as the Washington Temper Tantrum.


How can 1.2 trillion taxes not have increased the tax rate? Why should we trust government to ever lower taxes?


My understanding was that this would come by closing loopholes. Which is somewhat easy for me to believe given that GE paid no taxes the year before last and I know of another large company that paid less than 3% in taxes.

If those loopholes were closed, these companies would pay a more reasonable percentage of their profits in taxes (let's say it were 8-10%, which is still a much more enviable rate than what most of us currently pay). However, this would not constitute a tax rate increase as the rates would not be increased at all for individuals nor for businesses but the increased revenue would come in the form of elimination of some of the loopholes that allow for larger businesses to pay very little or nothing.


My understanding (and you all know I have never walked in the shoes of a Congressman or President!) is that business, particularly small business, is very jumpy and nervous now about expanding and hiring. Any threat of increasing taxes jeopardizes job creation.

I do believe loopholes should be closed. Fraud should not be tolerated, as it so often is, the bigger the business or the bigger the government. If I became President (Ha! Ha!) I would start with prosecuting to the full extent all those who are guilty of Medicare and Medicaid fraud. We could save billions there.

But I think the Fair Tax would alleviate many problems because other taxes and opportunities to cheat would be eliminated with a simpler tax system. The IRS--an intolerable, egregious, gestapo-like agency (just try getting a mistake corrected with them!!)--needs to be eliminated. This would also improve the climate for business and job-creation. And we could forget this talk of tax fraud and raising taxes (couldn't we?).

But, since the Fair Tax is probably years away (sigh!), we need to do the next best thing and find money by stamping out fraud, as well as by making hard cuts in spending. Families have to do that. The government raising the debt ceiling is equivalent to the family in debt saying, "Oh, let's just get another credit card." Eventually, creditors do not want to take them as a risk.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:58 pm 
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It might be an overstatement to say that one rating agency downgrading us means the destruction of the US economy.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 3:10 pm 
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I agree with the Tea Party ideas - the idea of balancing the budget, cutting spending, being fiscally responsible. In fact, I think its too bad that they didn't start the movement about eight years earlier, back when we only owed $5 trillion dollars and had a budget surplus. But, better late than never.

What I disagree with is some of the tactics that some members of Congress in particular utilized in (supposed) pursuit of those goals. I do not think it was acceptable to hint that they'd be perfectly willing to see the nation default if all of their conditions weren't met. I also have absolutely no idea what the Boehner bill was about or why it was done. When you have only a week to go before possibly defaulting, what was the exact purpose of working on a bill that could not pass Congress and which wasted a whole week's time? Makes no sense to me.

But when it all goes into the history books, this is a game that everybody loses.

* The President will always be the first President of the United States to have presided over a credit downgrade.

* Speaker Boehner will always be the first Speaker of the House to have presided over a credit downgrade.

* The 112th Congress will always be the first Congress to fail to raise the debt limit in a timely enough manner as to avoid default.

* The Tea Party movement, which has many good points, will, fairly or unfairly, be held responsible to some degree for the default, as will the President. I remember a couple of weeks ago someone here suggesting that voter anger will just blow over long before election day. Maybe that will still be true. But now people are fearful of increased interest rates. The stock markets all over the world have fallen precipitously. This is a very high price to pay for the principle of ... of ... eh ... I guess I don't know what we ultimately gained by this thing.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 3:17 pm 
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Jac3510 wrote:
justgrace wrote:
I do not really want to be drawn into a back and forth defense of people who are not perfect. But please remember that many of us here may have leanings toward some of the Tea Party ideals, if not all their actions. (I would think most of us do agree with them more than with the socialistic ideas of this President!) Isn't it wrong to call these honest citizens who feel they are being overtaxed and forgotten "idiots?"

I haven't called anyone an idiot. I would appreciate it if you didn't attribute things to me I didn't say. What I DID say was that Boehner's plan was idiotic, and it was. HE is in the gov't. HE KNEW that the S&P was going to downgrade us if he signed a deal for less than $4 trillion in spending cuts.

Obama's actions were idiotic, too. I assume that goes without saying here. My frustration here is with the defense of the indefensible Republican actions.


Jac, I was not calling you an "idiot" or saying you were calling anyone "idiots."

But sometimes the discussions and quotes seem to imply that about the Tea Partiers. I just don't want people to think we support running them down. That is what the major news media keeps calling Tea Party members, or at least implying that they are. I guess the latest term to put them down, marginalize, and misrepresent them is "terrorists." I think it is really elitism on the part of media "experts," to put the people of America down so often. This was a citizen-led protest, really. People like you and me who were fed up with big government and over-regulation and over-taxation. And the people they elected to Congress were not really prepared for just how intractable politicians can be, especially liberals and RINOs.

Of course, I believe in the Republican Platform but not always in what Republicans do. Some of them run, not on the Platform, but in the party where they can win in their district. It's a little like saying I believe in the Bible, but I do not agree with all the actions of those who profess to follow and believe it.

As a member of the local and district Republican Party in Kansas, I will try to do all I can to improve it and call it to account where needed. I have been pretty hard on some of them for not trying harder to include blacks and Hispanics. Thankfully, some progress is being made there. I do want to be an ideologue in so far as I believe the principles are right. But yes, I want to encourage listening and sometimes compromising if it means changing hearts and minds and perhaps making steps in the right direction. (By compromise, I mean not principles, such as life or marriage. I mean that sometimes we cannot get all we want at once. And we can learn a lot about commonalities when we listen.)

I do not know if the Tea Party and other Republicans could have done any better. I, too, was very disappointed and even angry at Boehner at first. But having never walked in those shoes, I do not know what could have been done, considering how different our President is ideologically.

I guess that is why the Bible tells us to pray for our leaders. It is probably harder to lead when you are outnumbered than any of us can imagine. Let's keep up the hope.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 3:43 pm 
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Before I go and get back to my work! I wanted to respond to this from TVV. (I really have trouble responding to all the multiple quotes and keeping them straight! :wink:

TheValuesVoter wrote:
justgrace wrote:
Quote:
Increasing taxes, as you know, would have really upset those voters who sent the Republicans to Congress on their promise not to raise taxes.



I have a great deal of respect for all your comments, JG, and think you are always insightful - so please don't misread my response to this particular comment as being negative - I think very highly of your insights. But this is the third time during this thread that I've heard someone comment sympathetically about the potential backlash that politicians would have to face from voters.

Honestly, the last thing on my mind - or on the minds of most voters - is sympathy for the political careers of our elected representatives. Do I care more about Grover Norquist hammering someone for doing something that in his mind violated his "No Tax Pledge" or about a solution being reached that preserved our nation's credit rating and met most of our goals? It's not even close - they need to do the right thing regardless. Let me remind you and everyone here that these are the same people who hammered Huckabee and actually prevented a President Huckabee from taking office in 2009. They attacked him because he did dare to do the right thing when he was Governor, balancing a budget and making the necessary improvements to his own infrastructure - even if it meant finding some ways to bring in new revenue - and even if it meant displeasing the holy mandates of the so-called fiscal conservatives whose first, second, and third priorities are about taxes, taxes, and taxes. Huckabee has the ... let's just say testicular fortitude ... to do what's in the best interests of his constituency even if it means that some professional critics attack him. I certainly can't say the same thing about some of our congressional leaders.


My take on this is a little different. I know there are many politicians who only care to be elected, no matter what it takes. But I do think that with the Tea Party movement, the sentiment is so strong against dishonest politicians who do not listen or keep promises that those who ran with their backing generally felt strongly about what they believed in. It is a matter of integrity to try to stand for what one believes in, I think. (Of course, even the best of us fails in actually doing that at times.)

And look how ineffective it can render a President who makes a statement, like George Herbert Walker Bush did: "No new taxes," and then was persuaded just once to renege on that promise. It hurt his integrity and his ability to get the respect he needed. Although he was probably far better on keeping taxes down than his Democrat counterpart would have been, he is still remembered for not keeping his word.

Oh, and thanks, TVV, for the kind words of respect for my viewpoints. Now, you are the one I really think is the deep-thinker and can see and articulate things well. I have learned much from you, even if we may not see 100% eye to eye. But then one of us would be unnecessary, right?

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 5:48 pm 
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justgrace wrote:
Jac3510 wrote:
TheValuesVoter wrote:
They could have accepted a deal with the President that would have cut the deficit by four trillion dollars with a mixture of 2.8 trillion in spending cuts and 1.2 trillion in taxes that would not have increased the tax rate. That would not have hurt the economy nearly as much as the Washington Temper Tantrum.

They could have resisted the urge to walk away from multiple negotiations, acts that, in themselves, helped make our government look extremely immature.
Especially when you combine this drama with the near-shutdown in the spring (which, even though it didn't happen, has a devastating impact on small businesses in my area, where the local economy feeds heavily on both the federal government and government contractors. When there is uncertainty and drama in DC, no one wants to spend money).

They should not have repeatedly communicated a willingness to see the country go into default or expressed skepticism that anything bad would happen if no deal was reached or if negotiations dragged on and on.

This.

Republicans only had two viable options. The first was to recognize that they didn't control everything and couldn't have everything their way, and therefore do what was best for the economy (and therefore, for the country as a whole) and work to win 2012. That's exactly what VV is describing here.

The second was to insist certain principles be non-negotiable--in this case, raising ANY taxes (including, apparently, closing tax loopholes)--and then insist that a deal be made that sufficiently closed the deficit within that framework.

Instead, they threw a temper-tantrum, made the country look bad, got a talking point saying that tax cuts are off the table (even though the "super committee" will be considering them), and STILL didn't get a deal that sufficiently closed the deficit.

In other words, everyone loses. So as far as I'm concerned, if we all have to lose because the economy is tanking, they ought to lose in November as well.


My understanding was that the President had the temper tantrum and walked out. Hmm...


Actually I think Cantor walked away first, then came back, then left again. Then the president tried to pull a fast one after the gang of six negotiations, so the speaker walked away.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 8:52 pm 
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justgrace wrote:
Oh, and thanks, TVV, for the kind words of respect for my viewpoints. Now, you are the one I really think is the deep-thinker and can see and articulate things well. I have learned much from you, even if we may not see 100% eye to eye. But then one of us would be unnecessary, right?


Absolutely. People don't have to agree about everything. However, it's really important to be able to talk about things that we disagree with, and, like QVA suggested, sometimes agree to disagree. However, I think in general, we as Huckabee supporters do a pretty good job overall of arguing our points but still being respectful to people who disagreee. I think that politicians in Washington could learn something from the people on this board. But then again, they could learn a lot from the guy we all support, Huckabee, which is why I think he still could change his mind and get in.

What other signal does he need that the country is way off track and needs his leadership?

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 12:57 am 
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Jac3510 wrote:
So long as people like you keep supporting them,they'll stay in power, and the downgrades will continue. As I said, I hold you responsible. This is your fault -- people who put party over principle and defend it no less are precisely the reason we are in this mess. I remember Huckabee talking about putting politics before principles, and about not spelling "God" as GOP.

Can we please handle our disagreement a little more respectfully? I don't know anyone on this board who puts party over principle. The accusatory & rather hostile language is counter-productive & invites return fire. What is accomplished by our turning on each other? Our enemy is not here.

TVV wrote:
They could have accepted a deal with the President that would have cut the deficit by four trillion dollars with a mixture of 2.8 trillion in spending cuts and 1.2 trillion in taxes that would not have increased the tax rate. That would not have hurt the economy nearly as much as the Washington Temper Tantrum.

Obama ignored his own debt commission and submitted a budget that adds $10 trillion in new debt - what is it about his "grand deal" that holds so much credibility?

Even the Time article link given stated that the deal was actually for $3.7 trilion which still fell short of the minimum $4 trillion that S&P was demanding (and odds are good that the CBO would have revealed more smoke & mirrors); & as Time further said, once the Gang of 6 derailed things, O pulled his deal because his own party was having none of it - so how were the Republicans supposed to sign on to a deal that was not only no longer on the table but O couldn't get his own party to sign on to? The emphasis is placed on the fringe in the GOP that would not cooperate, but they barely mention the fringe in the Dems that would not cooperate either. S&P specifically mentioned the need to address entitlements as well & the Dems still screamed 'Don't touch or else!'

The Time article also stated that the additional $400bn O was demanding would have required a tax increase. Boehner stated - as a simple statement of fact - that he would never be able to get that thru the House.

As for trauma caused by the DC "temper tantrum", the point I was trying to make earlier was that S&P was not somehow oblivious to the gridlock that exists in DC only until this event - even ordinary schleps on the street who don't follow politics were aware of that fact. The people on Wall Street were shrugging it off as SOStuff.

TVV wrote:
They could have resisted the urge to walk away from multiple negotiations, acts that, in themselves, helped make our government look extremely immature. Especially when you combine this drama with the near-shutdown in the spring (which, even though it didn't happen, has a devastating impact on small businesses in my area, where the local economy feeds heavily on both the federal government and government contractors. When there is uncertainty and drama in DC, no one wants to spend money).
While I can clearly see how greatly the idea of walking away from negotiations disturbs you, I have yet to see any statement by S&P - or any other organization outside of the DNC - that indicates they also perceived it so. Businesses negotiate in much the same way; Wall Street shrugged it off.

TVV wrote:
They should not have repeatedly communicated a willingness to see the country go into default or expressed skepticism that anything bad would happen if no deal was reached or if negotiations dragged on and on.
This is an example of the generalizing that I find problematic. Who expressed a willingness to see the country go into default, etc? It was certainly not the entire GOP - not the leadership - nor even the main of the group. Why should this then be attributed to the entire group? What power do you think Boehner has to force House members do as he bids them? And if he is the wrong leader, then who?

The president - who warned Cantor not to call his bluff or he was going to take it to the people - went on TV & told the people that the sky was going to fall if the GOP didn't "compromise" and give them what they wanted, and that was when signs of panic began to show. The only thing I heard from the GOP leadership was the effort to try to reassure people there was little likelihood of default because spending was covered thru Sept and no need to panic. Wall Street remembers the run on the banks during the Depression; Wall Street stopped shrugging things off & began to get seriously jittery - not so much about the stupidity in DC as about the potential market stampede forming in response to O's cattle call.

I would also like to address another point that has been mentioned a few times elsewhere by several members regarding the great wrong of not putting country before politics - many of these Congress-people believe that their politics are about putting their country first.

This business is like a chess match - not because they see it as a game, but because each move is seen as part of a strategy moving towards an ultimate goal. If you get taken out of the game, whether it's by your opponent or by your own doing (ie. raising taxes after promising to protect your people from that), it pretty much guarantees that you won't be able to reach that goal.

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

I wrestled for the better part of the day with whether to post this. This has been such a trying day for the country & here at our home. Things look so bleak right now. Can we all at least pray for each other, for our country in its desperate time of need, and pray for the politicians who are working towards the same goals we aspire (even if they do it less than perfectly at times)?

God's peace to you all!


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 2:16 am 
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QuoVadisAnima wrote:
Can we please handle our disagreement a little more respectfully? I don't know anyone on this board who puts party over principle. The accusatory & rather hostile language is counter-productive & invites return fire. What is accomplished by our turning on each other? Our enemy is not here.

Not nearly good enough, QVA. Let me ask you a question. What is accomplished by staying in line, withholding criticism from those we support, and playing politics and insisting that everything is somehow our enemy's fault (by whom, of course, we mean those dreaded Democrats)? Well all of our Republican apologists have a ready and quick answer for that: what is accomplished is Republican rule.

And what does that accomplish? Thirty more years of increased deficits? Of children being slaughtered by the millions? Of bailing out super-mega-rich banks? Of corporate welfare?

How much longer are we to stand by and watch them sing and dance to conservative tunes only to go to Washington and continue to drive us into a ditch? You really think this time it will be different? I was skeptical before the 2010 elections. But this "deal" only proved it for me. The GOP doesn't care about us one iota. It doesn't care anything for conservative principles. It cares about being in power. For the love of God, look at the GOP presidential field. You think they REALLY care about conservatives? Where has the support been for Huckabee even in the last few years? How can you possibly explain McConnell's plan to give Obama the power to unilaterally raise the debt ceiling? And the pretend $2 trillion in cuts to the current plan? They're all backloaded in the last two of ten years! This is just like the pretend, make-believe promise to cut $100 billion from the deficit THIS YEAR, and what did it turn out to be . . . $500 million? Maybe?!?

Now let me answer YOUR question. What does it accomplish to divide here? Maybe it will wake people up to the fact that Republicans will NEVER be conservative, and any hope they will is just a pipe dream. It's actually worse than that, because they have a track record--a long, very well established track record--of stabbing us in the back. And yet they pull their normal script, they cry and beg forgiveness from conservatives, and then they point to the boogeyman (of course, a Democrat) and say, "Hey, at least we aren't THAT!"

So, I'm really sorry, but asking us to all just get along isn't going to cut it anymore. I supported Huckabee because he wasn't a GOPer. He's a conservative, but just as important, he knows what it means to govern conservatively. He's more interested in doing the right thing than doing what will get him elected. The GOP, on the whole, proved by signing this deal just how far removed from Huckabee--and from me--they really are. And you ask me to support them? To stand by and sing kumbaya and pretend like its okay to keep giving people power who have a thirty year track record of using it just to promote themselves at the expense of the good of the country?

Our country is nearly lost, QVA. My daughter isn't going to have the country I did if we don't do something different, and God knows, giving Mitt Romney, Mitch McConnell, and John Boehner the reigns of power sure as heck isn't different. I can't do it anymore. Either I do the right thing and trust the results to God, or I do the political thing and hope I'm smarter than statists. Well I'm not that smart, but He is. I'd way rather trust Him, but that means being willing to do the hard thing and to stop supporting people who are more interested in themselves than in goodness. Faith without works is dead. I contend that our faith has been dead for a long time. If we can wake one person up, then I've accomplished all I could ever hope for.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 2:48 am 
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No, Jac, I am asking you to respect the differing views of the conservatives on this board. Have you ever studied apologetics? If so, then you are familiar with 1 Peter 3:15 and the admonition therein. You would also realize that you are not persuading; you are inflaming. Doors slam shut when you put people on the defensive.

I have also defended Obama against some of the garbage thrown against him that I felt was unfair or unreasonable - that does not make me a blind Obama worshipping supporter either.

God gives us both faith and reason. That's why when the devil tries to tempt Jesus to go over a cliff, the Lord replies not to put God to the test - the devil was trying to pit faith against reason. Prudence is a Scriptural virtue - not a copout. You are not offering us reasoned council with a virtuous alternative; you are badgering us to go howling with you into the political wilderness & challenge God to pick up the pieces. I will not put God to the test. And I would rather save as many lives as possible now than sacrifice them on the altar of my fight for perfection - or nothing.

Boanerges, though we do not follow you, we fight on the same side - we are not your enemy. If you truly believe that the Lord is going to take your protest vote & multiply it like the loaves & fishes, then do what you believe He wills. But you have not the authority to stand in judgment over those of us who believe that He is expecting us to use our gift of reason as well as our faith until such time as He gives us a command otherwise.

May the Lord grant you the balm of His peace.
~Grace



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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 5:11 am 
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I have not had a chance to read this thread so I'm not sure what all viewpoints have been expressed. I think it might be best that I post some of my views without reading what has already been said.

I have sat back and watched since the continuing resolution battle where Republicans supposedly made a good deal only to find out later it wasn't all that good. For the most part I agreed with the argument that they had to be satisfied with what they had accomplished since they had little leverage. I'll be honest though and say that I said (I believe on these boards) and elsewhere right after the 2010 election that it didn't do us conservatives a whole lot of good to get more grassroots type conservatives in Congress if the leadership was still going to be Boehner and McConnell. I had zero faith in those guys, and I believed they were part of the problem and not the solution. I saw them as establishment types who were willing to go along to get along.

However after I heard Boehner give his speech prior to being Speaker, and after I saw a few interviews I was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. I still didn't have a lot of faith in McConnell, but since he was the minority leader of the Senate there wasn't as much that he could do or mess up. Where I started to have misgivings with Boehner was during the debate for the continuing resolution when there was fear of a government shutdown. As someone who has been in the psychological field I watch people's demeanor and posture with great interest. What I saw early on with both Boehner and McConnell was that they bought into the whole lie that if something bad happened then Republicans would get the blame just like they supposedly did in the budget battle with Clinton.

Here was the problem. They were defeated before they ever started negotiating. You CANNOT negotiate from weakness. They got a small deal which cut only a minimum from the budget. It didn't take a psychology expert to figure out that Boehner and McConnell were not going to stand up and fight.

When they went into these negotiation regarding the debt ceiling I saw the same thing. Obama and the media threatened Republicans with blame if anything bad happened, and they caved. This debt deal is a joke. It only cuts a little bit out of the next 2 years with the rest supposedly coming in later years, and if anyone sincerely believes this Super Committee is going to produce results then I have some great houses to sell you in at full value in Vegas :)

Yes I know the argument that they are in control of only one house of one branch of the government. The problem though was once they believed they were going to get blamed they were already done. I agreed that they had to cut even a bad deal at that point or they would get blamed, but it didn't have to be that way. I easily saw what was coming. Boehner wanted a somewhat tougher deal to pass in the House when he knew ahead of time that he would water it down in a compromise with the Senate.

Here's the problem. Establishment Republicans are still the majority in both the House and Senate. Because there are a lot more conservatives then there used to be they are having to move slightly more in that direction, and their hands are tied on what they can do to cut deals, but this is essentially the same as it always has been.

The answer is not to elect more Republicans. The real answer is to elect more conservatives. It is going to take several cycles before we get a true conservative majority. If Mitt or Rick become President I fear we will see another backlash against Republicans like in 2006 and 2008 in the future which means we will be even father away from our goal.

So here is where I am at, and where I am going at this time. As a Christian I believe I have had my faith placed in God and not in government, but I see that happening within myself even more over the last few months. I am reminded that there was always a remnant with the children of Israel. No matter how bad things got, there were always those who placed their trust in God and did well even in bad times. I believe we have to take a longer-term view. I sincerely believe that one day our government will return to being a government for and by the people. I'm just not sure it is going to happen in the next 15 to 20 years.

I'm not saying that to be gloomy or negative. It helps me to be less stressed when I see things happening that are far from ideal with little chance of change in the near term. I mean when we see polls where Americans are upset with the very conservative members of Congress because they wanted even deeper cuts then that just amazes me. People like Mike Lee and Jim Demint told us over and over again that it wasn't the risk of default that was our biggest enemy, but it was the risk of not getting control of our debt that was our biggest threat. The recent downgrade proved them right. They reached a deal. They did what the media and Obama said was necessary. Where did it get us? It just showed that once again we aren't serious about our debt. Democrats said that a gun was held to their head, and they were held hostage by terrorists just because they weren't allowed to add 10 trillion in new debt and only get to add about 8 trillion. Does anyone else not see how messed up that is?

If Americans are that dumb to buy into all the liberal rhetoric and media hype then in all honesty they deserve what they get. But then again maybe Americans aren't that dumb. Maybe they're just waiting for real leadership and someone to stand up and tell the truth without being afraid of the consequences. One thing is for sure. This kind of leadership is not going to come from Boehner, McConnell, or the ones who look to be in the best shape to be the Republican nominee.

No matter what happens though we can trust in God's Word.

Psalms 37
25 I was young and now I am old,
yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken
or their children begging bread.



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