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Posts by foregoneconclusion

  Federal, state, and local governments have to operate on PROJECTIONS for both revenue and spending. They don't really know for sure what spending costs will actually turn out to be, nor do they really know for sure what the tax revenue will end up being at the end of a given year. Why is that? Because expensive government projects can run over budget vs. the original projection (i.e., claiming the Iraq war is going to very short and the cost is going to be shouldered...
  Generally, the focus in terms of "fair" has been the reality that very low capital gains taxes can mean that some of the wealthiest people in the country pay a lower effective tax rate on the vast majority of their income than people in the middle class. That's why there was so much coverage regarding Mitt Romney's tax returns. Most of Romney's income is in the form of capital gains.   That's the reason why the top income tax bracket used to be 70% or higher pre-Reagan....
  It's not foolish. Clinton increased taxes during his first term, and the revenue from those increases helped create tax surpluses that allowed several consecutive balanced budgets during his second term and real reduction of the national debt. Of course, that was in combination with a fairly low level of average annual growth in the federal budget, but it wasn't a slash-and-burn austerity approach either.   So...modest increases in taxes, reasonable restrictions in...
  Tax cuts are statistically known to be one of the weakest forms forms of stimulus in terms of "bang for the buck". The CBO has confirmed this time and time again, and the federal government has decades of statistics on it. One of the problems with tax cuts as a stimulus during slower economic times is that people tend to save the money rather than spend it if they're worried about the economy...and it's only SPENDING of the money that stimulates the economy....
  Incorrect. It was Fiscal Year 2009 that had the first trillion dollar deficit. Fiscal Year 2009 ran from October 1st, 2008 thru September 30th, 2009 (as the federal fiscal year always does), and was the final Bush administration budget. It was George W. Bush that was signing all of the appropriations bills during 2008 that would enable the Fiscal Year 2009 spending.
  So you've never heard of the term "structural debt" as it relates to the private sector? You don't think it's possible for a company to pay off debt and continue borrowing at the same time?
  Of course you can keep spending money that you don't have. The private sector does it every day. Borrowing and lending is the engine of capitalism. Did the private sector vow to never borrow beyond their own capital again after the financial meltdown in 2008-2009? Of course not. The ability of corporate America to make money would slow to an absolute crawl without constant borrowing. It's really just a cynical double-standard to claim that the U.S. (which bailed out the...
At the end of the day, a corporation is focused on it's own self-interest, which by definition means it's not the best place to go for advice about what is best for the public interest.
  The reason the U.S. government has to borrow a trillion per year is because of all of the financial commitments it's already made in the past. Those don't disappear just because someone new took office. The last Bush administration budget ended up with a trillion dollar deficit, so that's the deficit level that Obama has had to deal with himself. Also, why would you consider the past four years to be a "terrible result"? The last time the U.S. economy contracted was in...
  What about all of the contradictions that existed in terms of those "inalienable" rights at the time (like slavery, voting rights, and women's rights)? All of the amendments to the Constitution going forward from that time? Those kinds of things don't really fit into the idea of the Constitution not functionally granting the rights to the citizens of the United States. There are far too many historical disagreements about the scope of the rights you're supposedly born...
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