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Krugman deserves his own thread for this one

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by Batman Jones, Jul 26, 2011.

  1. Batman Jones

    Batman Jones Contributing Member

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    On this point however you are are entirely correct. That happens every time basso logs on to this site. It's his one special gift. He couldn't make it as an opera singer, but he is damn good at trolling. If he's not getting paid for it, he should.
     
  2. False

    False Member

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    Batman, I don't really feel like arguing with you on this point because I agree with you politically. I am also unhappy with the rightward trajectory of the Democratic Party over the past 20 years. Please don't misquote or willfully misconstrue what I said. I did not say that the Democrats were moving to the left or toward any pole, I said that they were staying put in their slightly "left of center" position. I personally think that both parties are to the right of what the center (or at least what the center was 2 decades ago), that's why I put "left of center" in quotes.

    The problem with any characterization of either party as having any relation to the center is that every time you use the words center you will have to describe the actual center you are referring to. You seem to be referring to the center as some sort of policy triangulation between both parties from 20 years back, while I was referring to center as it is defined in the present. I was not saying the Democrats have not moved at all, only that they have moved less to the right than the Republicans. Frankly, I think that arguing about who is where in relation to the center is a waste of time, but, if you insist on arguing where each party falls vis a vis the center, could you define this center you are referring to? Why would you pick your center to be some type of policy triangulation from 20 years back? Why not 10 or 50? The use of this idea of the center is lazy shorthand that the media falls into that allows them to equate policy determinations as being equally meritorious, when they really are not.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. lalala902102001

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    The problem with this logic is that those who say 2+2=6 are usually the majority.
     
  4. greenhippos

    greenhippos Member

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    Point well taken, that's why I believe no matter how much your income is, the rate needs to stay be the same across the board. But there indeed people out there who think the rich should pay a higher percentage than people with lower income simply because 'they can afford to'. As I said, I pay next to nothing in income tax, I get almost all of it back. I don't need the money and it's never something I've ever taken into account when it comes to bills.

    Of course I don't believe in the 'well if you don't need it, write a check to the government to help reduce the debt' or any of that gargbage. If the tax man wants to give me my money back I'll take it with a smile on my face.
     
  5. Major

    Major Member

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    We have a mix of taxes in this country. Some are progressive, some are flat, and some are regressive. Why would you take just one of those taxes and argue that because it's progressive, it's bad? What about all the others that work in opposite fashion?
     
  6. Mr. Clutch

    Mr. Clutch Contributing Member

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    Those are bad too
     
  7. Dairy Ashford

    Dairy Ashford Member

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    Yeah, you'll never be gay or get pregnant, so I'm guessing your little service workers' crime and poverty plan pretty much reveals with whom you'll be voting 10-15 years from now.
     
  8. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    Life expectancy has increased significantly since entitlements were created. Retirement ages associated with those programs must be adjusted. There is nothing drastic about that and I think it is irresponsible to have programs that do not adjust to a changing population.

    Yes I did see how they say it balances the budget before the Republican proposal, but I didn't see projected revenue associated with each tax increase. Nevermind...I found the link.

    I don't disagree with a lot of the tax changes. The only thing I am completely against is a financial transaction and speculation tax (and that is worth about 1 trillion dollars, if I added right, in tax revenue under this plan). It would kill a lot traders like myself. Who knows maybe it would open up opportunities since there would be MUCH less liquidity. There is no centralized liquidity provider anymore and maybe that volatility would be helpful to me cause it would immediately end all high frequency trading. LOL actually I want to see this happen just to see what kind of chaos would be associated with it immediately after the enactment of the tax. Would be fun to see!

    I also don't like the extra tax on millionaires. I think the changes to capital gain tax, div income, muni bond income, line item deductions are good though, but I think those changes should be for everyone and not only for people over 1 million bucks.

    Anyhow, this plan is just basically cut military spending (and HOPE there are no disturbances across the globe that need major military action), increase some social programs, and tax the wealthy and financial markets. Tax revenue as a % of GDP would be higher than what it has been over the past 60 years. Taxes as a % of GDP certainly need to increase and I think the issue of the rich getting much richer needs to be addressed. I think there are some good ideas in this plan, however I think it is just too one sided.
     
  9. Northside Storm

    Northside Storm Contributing Member

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    Raising the social security age to 67 will not save that much, you're going to have to do things like adjust COLA payments down and significant downwards spending on entitlements to get the equivalent.

    That said, I'm personally not entirely averse to modifying things like that, and adding to the plan, but if you think the Progressive Caucus is being one sided...one sided comes in where the Republicans are taking it, and what I'm referring more to. They don't want just little changes here and there.

    Ryan's plan basically takes an axe to education, "entitlement programs" and societal welfare, while giving tax breaks. Cap and balance isn't even a plan, it's just a vague commitment to disaster.

    So while I think your idea is reasonable, the reason why I labeled it as drastic is because it implies many more grave steps if you're only talking spending cuts. I suppose if you were amenable to the plan though, you'd be amenable to my position then---tax increases, and spending cuts wherever the benefits outweigh the costs. Something like raising the retirement age is something I would not prefer, but would definitely not discard.

    The progressive plan would still leave America with a sizable military, just not one that accounts for more than 50% of global military expenditure (with close allies accounting for another 20-25%).

    Really, I think the Progressive plan is not perfect, and it definitely has flaws, but it is certainly something that can be worked on, and given enough refinement, could be the best solution. Too bad it was "dead on arrival" the moment the nuts went "NO TAX INCREASES EVER!".
     
    #89 Northside Storm, Jul 27, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2011
  10. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    Why do you have to wait for confidence to falter to begin to change course? We are projecting to need to access the debt markets in very large amounts for at least a decade on top of the deficits we have been running for the past 10 years. We are projected to need $7 trillion from the debt markets to continue on this path over the next 10 years. Stop and think how absurd that is. I honestly just did right now and it is pretty ridiculous.

    So IMO raising the debt ceiling without any sort of significant resolution to the deficit just kicks the can down the road and hurts global confidence in our ability to solve our significant budget issues.

    And borrowing is not simply just a confidence game...it's a numbers game. It can become a game of confidence if one becomes overlevered and overly dependent on debt. We are not overlevered, but we are highly dependent on debt. We have this ability to borrow because we are the most dominant economy in the world and we have a massive amount of wealth. The confidence isn't there just because people feel like being confident on a whim. The confidence is there because our economy is amazingly powerful and because we are the reserve currency of the world. I guess we can see how far we can push this confidence and just lay into the debt markets until rates start to move up significantly and then figure out what to do after we have accumulated a lot more debt. But I think that is a dangerous game to play.
     
  11. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    I haven't kept up with the various plans, but I thought some of the Republican plans did have increases to effective tax rates?
     
  12. NotInMyHouse

    NotInMyHouse Contributing Member

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    Bigoted towards southerners or small-town folks much? I guess we're all stuck in our little shantys and something like the internet isn't accesible to any of us to educate ourselves? We've all got to re-double our efforts to be metropolitan travelers apparently.
     
  13. Deckard

    Deckard Blade Runner
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    I had to control myself over the weekend while hanging out with some good friends. The S.O. of a guy I've known since grade school, a lady I really care about and admire, has one particular flaw. No matter what political issues end up being discussed, and we always end up discussing some issues, as my old friend and my own S.O. (along with myself, naturally) love to talk politics, she comes out with "They're all alike, they are all the same, they're all just as bad, yada, yada, yada!!" until my head wants to explode. She just doesn't want to hear the reasons why they are NOT all alike. Simply doesn't want to hear them.

    Although, as I said, I care a hell of a lot about her as a friend, she represents one of the paramount dangers to our political system that exist in the good old USA. Far too many people like her don't bother to delve deeply enough into what makes our country tick politically, the two major parties, to realize just how different they are in ways absolutely crucial to the health of our democracy. They "skim" through the elections. They have no concept, for instance, of the impact of lifetime Federal judges and who appoints them. How for decades after the elections that brought those people to their exalted position, they are still having a huge impact on our personal lives, the health of our democracy, and even our standing and relationships with countries overseas. A good example is today's radical Roberts Supreme Court. By a narrow majority, they declared that for political purposes, a corporation was a person. A person! The restraints on their political spending, restraints decades in the making, were in a moment lifted. The result? We are already seeing a big uptick in the money those corporations are spending politically. It will only get worse. A lot worse. And that's only one example. What caused this sea change in American politics? The election of a President from one particular party, a party increasingly in the grip of extremists and those corporations I mentioned.

    Yeah, I've said it here many times, and I'm not alone. Elections have consequences. Some of them last a lifetime. Some of those elections have consequences that last generations. We are in deep, deep trouble, people.
     
  14. Batman Jones

    Batman Jones Contributing Member

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    I don't insist on arguing about it but I do feel compelled to correct anyone that calls today's Democratic party left, liberal or left-center.

    As for defining the center, no I cannot, because the center is always moving. But there are core party principles by which to judge. When the GOP governs by its party's platform and the Democrats do not, I'd say they have moved off the center of even their own party.

    And considering that Obama has advocated mostly for policies passed or proposed by Nixon, Reagan, Bush I, Bob Dole and on and on -- and people call him a socialist, a liberal, a left-winger or even center-left for it -- I think it's a pretty sure bet the center in the Congress and the Presidency have been steadily moving to the right.

    The country is something else again. Their positions on various actual issues have, by and large, steadily been moving left, particularly on social issues but also on most domestic issues. On taxes, jobs, education, the environment and on and on and on, the people generally favor Democratic party principles. If only elected Democrats would do the same.
     
  15. Batman Jones

    Batman Jones Contributing Member

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    That's very true. But it's also true of the news media and it's their job to correct the math.
     
  16. greenhippos

    greenhippos Member

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    If you bothered to read, I already stated, in its own post who I would vote for.....I like how you attacked gay people in your post. Stay classy.
     
  17. Northside Storm

    Northside Storm Contributing Member

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  18. Batman Jones

    Batman Jones Contributing Member

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    And they are not only against all new taxes. Their major beef right now is with tax cuts that were never meant to last beyond last year. Under the law containing the Bush tax cuts for the rich were supposed to expire last year. Republicans said that if they weren't extended (equalling a new tax cut for the rich), they would not allow tax relief to the middle class or poor and that they would not continue to provide relief to people that have been on unemployment for a certain amount of time.

    In other words, in exchange for providing relief to the unemployed, the poor or the middle class, they insisted on a new tax cut for the rich.

    That new tax cut for the people that need it least, coupled with closing corporate loopholes, is the only "revenue" that was ever requested by Democrats during the debt ceiling negotiations. Republicans said no to even that, while insisting on deep cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

    Maintaining unusually low taxes on the rich, while everyone else is suffering, is bigger than abortion to these guys anymore.
     
  19. greenhippos

    greenhippos Member

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    I don't agree with all of those either. My only issue is with federal income tax, I think everyone should pay roughly the same perecentage of their income. Which is why, like another poster said before, Buffet pays less as a percentage than his secretary, no reason at all that's right. There are some circumstances where I can see someone paying less for a fixed amount of time. For instance someone who's been out of a job for a few months, I think they should pay a lesser percentage the first 4-6 months they're back to work. As far as business owners who provide jobs, they pay a whole heap of other taxes that I won't get into honestly because I'm not too familiar with it and won't pretend to. I think after they pay their taxes on the business profits a tax deduction based on number employed could be in order.

    Not an issue if anyone disagrees with any of that, just my opinion.
     
  20. basso

    basso Contributing Member
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    If by "not making it" you mean 10 years on the lyric stage, with annual gigs at the Met, La Scala, and the Paris Opera, then yes, you are correct.

    Failure.
     

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