Quantcast
Opinion

Richard Davis: Sequester makes no sense, but it is time to cut

Comments

Return To Article
  • wrz Pheonix, AZ
    Feb. 28, 2013 1:13 p.m.

    @Milt:
    "Hey wrz -- go look up the SPENDING INCREASES of Obama VS GW BUSH...

    Who cares about that? What we care about is the net result that Obama put us further in debt than Bush or any of his predecessors put together. Obama certainly could have cut spending to avoid the mess we now have. If revenues are down, the sane thing to do is to cut spending. But not Obama. His object seems to be to ruin our economy and bankrupt the government.

    "...it's STILL Bush/Cheney policies..."

    Of course it is. Every bad thing is Bush and Cheney's fault.

    "...unfunded wars, tax cuts, medicare ptD..."

    Well, Obamacare will make those things look like chicken feed where health insurance premiums are expected to go to $20,000, per IRS.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Feb. 28, 2013 12:33 p.m.

    To "Milt" and what is Obama doing that is any different than Bush?

    Do we still have troops engaged in combat? Didn't Obama extend the Bush tax cuts 2 times now? Didn't Obama add to medicare part D with Obama care?

    If Bush was bad because of $400 billion deficits, why is it that Obama is good for $1.2 Trillion deficits?

    A better question to ask yourself is this. If Bush was able to go through a recession in 2001 and have its effects gone in less than 2 years, why is it that Obama's policies have done nothing to reduce unemployment or raise tax revenues in 5 years?

    Also, if you look at dollar figures, Bush's final year had the total federal spending at $2.5 Trillion. Obama's smallest budget ran $3.5 Trillion. How can you say that the disparity is due to tax revenues, when the spending jumped by $1 trillion in less than 2 years? The evidence indicates that Obama has a spending problem.

  • Milt South Jordan, UT
    Feb. 28, 2013 11:14 a.m.

    "wrz
    Pheonix, AZ

    @Milt:
    "By the way, Obama has been a VERY conservative spender !! especially relative to GWBush..."

    Are you kidding us?! Obama increased the national debt by almost more than all the presidents put together... including GWBush... Over six trillion dollars."

    Hey wrz -- go look up the SPENDING INCREASES of Obama VS GW BUSH -- Obama has been the LEAST of the spenders of the all the presidents in the last 30 years! Read closely what I wrote -- Tax collections fell due to the bad economy while the low rates of Bush tax cuts are holding in effect - leading to a gap in federal revenue collection. Bush's spending increases were at 20% annually at times!! So again I am talking about SPENDING growth you you are talking about debt growth. The debt grew MUCH more because of collecting less in tax revenue than because of Obama's spending !! research it -- really go read up, debt vs spending growth... while you're at it research cost of policies implemented/ in effect now to see where the costs are coming from - it's not Obama, it's STILL Bush/Cheney policies (unfunded wars, tax cuts, medicare ptD... it is.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 28, 2013 10:42 a.m.

    The time to cut was last Novemeber; Thug politics won - logic lost

  • Milt South Jordan, UT
    Feb. 28, 2013 10:24 a.m.

    Copy Cat said: "I disagree. We have been spending like crazy, temporarily, for 5 years. We are still knee deep in unemployed and now our grandchildren will have to pay for our spending that didn't work.

    Save the great-grandchildren!!! Stop the deficit spending."

    We should have spent MORE in these last five years to make it more effective, that has been the problem. Sounds crazy but that's how macroeconomics works - it is NOT like your family budget!

    Here's how macroeconomics work spending more->more employment->more optimism->more investment->assets rising->more optimism->more consumer spending-> GROWTH

    -- the ONLY way to fix the deficit is to grow our way out of it! -- and since 2/3 of our whole economy is consumption -- we MUST grow the consumption of things in our society.

    The big failure of our recent past was NOT paying down our debt more when the economy was going gangbusters. We were selfish and gave ourselves big tax cuts instead! (Bush/Cheney tax cuts, etc etc) then we were REALLY foolish and passed Medicaid part D totally unfunded (republican support-only vote there) and started two wars without raising any taxes to pay for them.

  • wrz Pheonix, AZ
    Feb. 28, 2013 9:31 a.m.

    @Milt:
    "By the way, Obama has been a VERY conservative spender !! especially relative to GWBush..."

    Are you kidding us?! Obama increased the national debt by almost more than all the presidents put together... including GWBush... Over six trillion dollars.

    "...so his problem has been more about UNDERCOLLECTING of taxes then over spending..."

    If you want more taxes collected you will put the economy in a continuous tailspin for perhaps the next decade.

    @Eric Samuelsen:
    "We have two problems: unemployment and the deficit."

    Yes, and our unemployment will be exacerbated with Obama as president... He wants open borders and amnesty for an estimated 11 million illegal immigrants. This will balloon the number of unemployed since there are just so many jobs available.

    @RedShirt"
    "If the government just eliminated the redundancies that would save more money than the sequester will cut."

    Excellent post, RedShirt. The US General Accountability Office (GAO) recently issued a report (to Congress, since the GAO is an arm of the Congress) outlining billions in savings. If Congress would just read and implement the findings in the report the sequestration problem would disappear. Why don't they do it, is a strange mystery.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Feb. 28, 2013 8:32 a.m.

    To "CHS 85" we could begin with Head Start. The DN ran an article earlier this week where they quoted government studies that showed it was ineffective.

    Getting rid of Ethanol subsidies will save $6 billion/year, and push farmers to produce more food.

    According to the WSJ article "Billions in Bloat Uncovered in Beltway" just getting rid of redundant programs will save $100 to $200 billion.

    Reducing unemployment benefits back to 6 months will save us $30 billion.

    Making Obama pay more of his own expenses would save at least another billion. See "President's family costs US 20 times what royal family costs UK" at MSN.

    Getting rid of green energy subsidies will save another $16 billion.

    If the government just eliminated the redundancies that would save more money than the sequester will cut.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Feb. 28, 2013 5:19 a.m.

    Re: ". . . this country has no real people. At least not any politicians."

    Amen, brother!

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Feb. 28, 2013 5:15 a.m.

    Re: ". . . we can close the deficit, but only with significant tax increases, which, by the way, the wealthy can easily afford . . . ."

    In other words, we are in hereditary thrall to deranged, vote-buying government spending, and the only way our Nation can survive is by robbing the successful to buy off the indolent.

    Hmmmmmmm.

    If that liberal concept of America were actually true, we would truly be finished.

    Fortunately, for America and the world, real people are neither as evil, nor as stupid as liberals assume.

  • wrz Pheonix, AZ
    Feb. 27, 2013 11:30 p.m.

    "Sequester makes no sense..."

    Sequestration wouldn't be needed if Congress had the guts to do the work that members were sent to Washington (and being paid) to do. They just can't seem to muster the courage to cut anything for fear of losing constituency votes. That's what we call 'politicians.' what we lack are 'statesmen' in our government... and that include the present occupant in the White House.

    "... but it is time to cut"

    Yes, we need cuts else we will not only be bankrupt but will have a major economic melt-down... And soon.

  • John Jackson Sandy, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 11:22 p.m.

    "Every economist will tell you that austerity doesn't work and that you don't cut government spending when coming out of a recession," offers Wildcat.

    What we are going through is not 1930, but we are insisting on using the same solutions used in 1930. In 1930, the unemployed did not have the social net we have today. Now, we not only have a social net, but the social net is part of the reason we have such a huge national deficit. Today, we are faced with the charge of curbing a deficit while at the same time not teetering the economy. Today, we are not just learning the principle of force-feeding the economy with government spending, we are dealing with the reality that government spending must be curbed. We have been on the force-feed for so long, it has become our addiction.

    Anyway, we do need to consider that it is time to cut. If we cannot achieve so much as the small curbing of growth that the Sequester will bring, what hope do we have of ever beginning the process of controlling the national deficit?

  • Eric Samuelsen Provo, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 8:37 p.m.

    Milt's right. We have two problems: unemployment and the deficit. They cannot both be solved together--they require different solutions, and so must be solved sequentially. The right sequence is unemployment, then deficit. And it's entirely possible that solving unemployment will make solving the deficit much much easier, by expanding the tax base. The sequester accomplishes nothing.

  • Copy Cat Murray, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 7:43 p.m.

    Milt
    South Jordan, UT
    "No, it is NOT time ot cut... it is time to spend ...TEMPORARILY..."

    I disagree. We have been spending like crazy, temporarily, for 5 years. We are still knee deep in unemployed and now our grandchildren will have to pay for our spending that didn't work.

    Save the great-grandchildren!!! Stop the deficit spending.

  • Swiss Price, Utah
    Feb. 27, 2013 7:19 p.m.

    Milt: The problem isif we wait to cut there will never be cuts. Reagan was promised cuts and Bush was promised cuts. Show me those cuts and I will happily go along with closing loop holes.

  • AT Elk River, MN
    Feb. 27, 2013 5:04 p.m.

    @KentD - if you were right, Zimbabwe would have the best economy in the world.

  • Milt South Jordan, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 4:43 p.m.

    No, it is NOT time ot cut... it is time to spend ...TEMPORARILY ... the time to cut is when we are doing well !! Instead, what we did was we cut taxes and lost government revenue that would have paid down the debt. When a pump needs to be primed, it takes water and lots of it sometimes. The fed. government should prime the economic pump and then when the water is flowing take some off the flow to pay it off. The hedge fund managers, bankers, milliionaire and billionaire classes have been fully juiced up to be the 'job creators' but to no avail..

    By the way, Obama ahs been a VERY conservative spender !! especially relative to GWBush --- so his problem has been more about UNDERCOLLECTING of taxes then over spending.... go look it up - Bush spending increases VS Obama spending increases!

  • Wildcat O-town, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 4:20 p.m.

    Bravo Kent C. DeForrest for pointing out what is the true nature of the problem. Essentially what is happening here is that cuts that will result in putting us back into a recession and the loss hundreds of thousands of jobs are being made so that billionaires can have their tax loopholes.

    Every economist will tell you that austerity doesn't work and that you don't cut government spending when coming out of a recession. You get people back to work and you get the economy growing before you cut WASTEFUL spending (like subsidies to Oil Companies).

    I don't want to hear a party that had two wars and Medicare Part D off budget lecture us on debt. With Wall Street doing as well as they have--thanks to the taxpayer bailout, it is time they pay their fair share of taxes before we make cuts to social programs that affect everyday people.

    The rich are not job creators as obviously shown this last decade--they are doing great, but are holding onto money and not spending. It is consumers that are job creators. If consumers don't have money to spend--no jobs are created!

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 3:02 p.m.

    Okay, RedShirt

    Let's see an actual plan that shows actual dollar amounts and programs. Your side was decrying cuts to the military saying the military will be decimated, then all the sudden, they say it isn't that bad. Well, which is it?

    Which "ineffective programs" do you want to do away with? Let's see something specific with some dollar figures to back it up and the effect it will have on the nation.

    I wonder how long I'll wait. The last time I posed this question to a story about cutting was done two months ago and the challenge went unanswered.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 2:11 p.m.

    @Redshirt
    "The US typically collects between 17% and 20% GDP in taxes, while spending 25% GDP. "

    Currently it's taking in 14-15% and spending 24-25% which is why I insist that we have both revenue and spending problems.

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 1:37 p.m.

    Red:

    FYI, if government hadn't picked up the spending slack, we would be hip-deep in a major depression right now. After 2007, demand hit rock bottom. You really think austerity is the answer? Do you understand what causes recessions to turn into depressions? Yes, we need to get things back into balance, but doing it by slashing spending will send us directly into depression. Do not pass go, do not collect $200. Yes, we can close the deficit, but only with significant tax increases, which, by the way, the wealthy can easily afford and still invest plenty in new production (if there were only corresponding demand to justify it).

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 12:21 p.m.

    To "Kent C. DeForrest" Washington has a severe spending problem. Since Obama took office we have been spending more and more money using a credit card. The US typically collects between 17% and 20% GDP in taxes, while spending 25% GDP. In other words, they spend more than they take in, and have done so for 60 years.

    Why is it that we have to continue to spend more money on ineffective government programs?

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Feb. 27, 2013 12:21 p.m.

    "To real people, it's a problem. One that needs fixing."

    Then this country has no real people. At least not any politicians.

    John Boehner? Is he a "real person". How about Eric Cantor. Paul Ryan perhaps? What about Mitch McConnell.

    These guys all voted for unfunded wars, no child left behind, medicare part D (the largest entitlement expansion in my lifetime) all while cutting taxes.

    Nope, the Dems are no better, but this GOP leadership is large part of the problem ( as is the Republican party in general)

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 10:49 a.m.

    Re: "Actually, we don't have a debt crisis . . . yet."

    Yeah -- the fact that my family's [and your family's, and every other family's] portion of the national debt now exceeds our mortgages is not a problem.

    To liberals.

    To real people, it's a problem. One that needs fixing.

    And one that will never be fixed by liberals.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 10:42 a.m.

    Time to cut?

    Says who? Foxnews and AM radio?

    What credible economist believes that a cut in spending won't have detrimental effects on the economy?

    Do we really want our economy to go back into a recession?

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 10:12 a.m.

    Actually, we don't have a debt crisis . . . yet. What we have is an economy that unevenly distributes its wealth. If the consumer classes keep getting squeezed, then, yes, we will eventually have a debt crisis. As long as there is too much money available for investment and too little for consumption, government will need to keep spending to try to keep the economy from collapsing.

    If corporate executives could see past the end of their noses, they would understand that their economic philosophy is a dead-end street. If they would change their goal from maximizing shareholder and executive wealth to maximizing employment (while still turning a profit), most of our problems would eventually vanish, including the purported debt crisis. With the middle and lower classes getting more income, tax revenue would increase. But the greed sector can't seem to understand this, and unless they do, they will continue to hammer nails into their own coffin.

    So, let's keep laying people off and shipping jobs to Third World countries and see how much demand that generates in America. Stupidity doesn't have to be a requirement for either CEOs or politicians, but it certainly seems so.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 10:06 a.m.

    The notion currently being advanced by republicans of selective pain is nothing new as the writer points out. And it’s not necessarily a republican only game. The real government divisions in America would be better labeled as Business versus people. The strategy of politics is to punish the people rather that the offending government opposition.

    The people who are touting small, restricted and ineffective government are those who don’t want to be interfered with as they oppress the weaker people. And since the only way to legally oppress and enslave people in America is with the economic system, these people are generally know as business.

    The apparent willingness to destroy America and it’s government in the name of higher profits, indicates to me that the business operations in America may no longer be owned by Americans.

  • Makid Kearns, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 8:33 a.m.

    "Another example was Amtrak's response when it was threatened with a cut in the federal subsidies it operates on. Rather than pare back a few of the numerous routes in the Northeast where it would not be noticed as much, the train service announced it would eliminate a cross country line stretching from Chicago to Seattle. Since that was the only train service in that part of the country, and it passed through several states and many Congressional districts, many members of Congress complained that Amtrak's budget simply could not be cut."

    So, you are advocating that Amtrak cut a profitable train to keep one that is highly unprofitable? If Amtrak was told that they had to operate completely without Federal Funds, only a few lines would operate. The Northeast section would either stay the same or even see more trains, Trains in Southern California would also stay as would some trains to Chicago. The rest of the country would see a significant drop in service if not an end to service.

    Why advocate for cutting revenue lines and keeping highly subsidized lines. This type of thinking doesn't work anymore.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    Feb. 27, 2013 8:07 a.m.

    Your tax dollars at work, always some place that will annoy the most people.