Where are the Republican's Priorities?

@mattic (282)
United States
March 29, 2011 11:59am CST
The sweeping victory in November had a short play among the Republicans, who promised to rein in big government. To put it in perspective, the few billion they have offered in cuts would be akin to giving you a five dollar discount on a 15 thousand dollar vehicle. How can we express that we want massive cuts? Or is it that we have gone so far down the entitlement trail that most Americans are happy to have government steal from their fellow citizens...as long as their own needs are met? I fear we are well on our way to becoming a socialist dictatorship. What do you think?
2 people like this
11 responses
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
29 Mar 11
It's scary for most of America to think of giving up the entitlements they've grown used to. Some can't fathom living without the toys and accoutrements of modern life. Easy credit instead of saving and waiting has become the acceptable way to run your life. They've not been taught in school that it takes accountability and responsibility to succeed. Instead, they hope that they will win the lottery or in the case of young people in school, that they can become the next American Idol or superstar in sports. Our culture is dying and no one notices because ethics and morals are not being taught. I agree with you mattic, hurray for a voice of reason!
3 people like this
• United States
29 Mar 11
When was the last time a Republicant cut the national debt? That was Ford, right? http://acapella.harmony-central.com/showthread.php?2752141-National-Debt-chart-by-President-%28since-Gerald-Ford%29 It wasn't G.W.B, and he had 8 years. It wasn't G.H.W.B, and he had 4 years in which to try. It wasn't Reagan, and he had 8 years in which to try. One and only President president over a national debt reduction in the last 30 years. He was a Democrat, and his name is William Jefferson Clinton. Let me say that again: In the last thirty-one years, three Republicant Presidents talked about cutting the national debt. One Democratic President actually cut the national debt. And you still think Republicants will actually rein in big government?
1 person likes this
@Taskr36 (13874)
• United States
29 Mar 11
Just to clarify, Clinton cut the "deficit". The actual debt grew by 1.7 billion during his 8 years. Eliminating the deficit was certainly a great thing, but it's not the same as actual debt reduction. I should also point out that it was a republican congress that he had that was instrumental in the process. All spending bills must come from congress. As president he could do nothing to decrease the deficit if congress didn't pass the appropriate legislation. By the same token Bush couldn't have let the debt get so out of control if both republican AND democrat run congresses hadn't passed horrible budgets.
• United States
29 Mar 11
Actually the last President to cut the national debt was President Andrew Jackson. He was a big believer in not owing money. Clinton didn't cut the national debt. He actually passed on something like $33 billion to Bush which was more than what he had going in. In fact, there was only one year of his Presidency that the budget actually got balanced. He also raised the corporate tax rate above 30% and had a few other tax increases. A lot of his success can be accredited to how the economy was doing at the time. During his Presidency, the internet was blowing up and so was the housing market.
@andy77e (5171)
• United States
29 Mar 11
This is the guy in the glass house throwing stones. Yes, I agree, the republicans overspent. Um.... In fact... GWBush has a record $400 Billion deficit. You do understand that Obama reached $1.4 Trillion deficit in the FIRST YEAR IN OFFICE...... and now it is $1.5 Trillion, even after he claimed his dozen legislative programs would reduce the deficit. So, no... I do not know for a fact that Republicans would reduce the size of government. What I *DO* know, is that the Democraps sure as hell wouldn't cut it. So which should I choose, the one that might, or the one that for sure won't? Hmmm.... choices choices.
@speakeasy (4215)
• United States
29 Mar 11
The problem with the lack of cuts is lobbyists. The Republicans plan to cut some very inexpensive programs which benefit a lot of people; but, are not willing to take a single penny from the trillions in farm subsidies or change the tax laws to keep companies like GE from not paying any taxes even though they make trillions in profit every year.
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
30 Mar 11
Lobbyists have to go! I don't have the money to influence (bribe) Congress and neither should they.
1 person likes this
@sam3m1 (190)
• United States
30 Mar 11
how does what you describe lead to a socialist dictatorship? right now 400 people in the u.s. have assets equal to 150,000,000 of us. common sense tells me that those 400 are using their wealth and influence to take more money from the rest of us. they pay little or no tax and often increase their profits by eliminating american jobs when they can. at the same time, they have successfully pitted us against one another. the wisconsin unions vs. gov. walker is an excellent example of the tactic. the wealthy avoid paying taxes and blame the deficits on the fat pensions (average $8,000 per year in new york state), soc. security, medicare, etc. the entitlement programs should be examined, but why in the world are we giving billions in tax breaks to people who have millions? the gop's mandate with the last election was get jobs, not push the right wing agenda. if their against abortion, go to court against it. against the unions? bargain with them rather than trying to break them becvause they support democrats. come up with candidates who are intelligent, fair-minded people, not idealogs like palen and bachman and barber. there have to be reasonable repubs. out there. look around.
@mattic (282)
• United States
30 Mar 11
First, how can we "give" a tax break. Whose money is it. You have let your collectivist slip show. I dispute the 400 number, but even giving you that it is still their money. The jobs also belong to them. The Wisconsin issue is a straw man argument, but government employee unions are the epitomy of big government statism. The GOP sweep in November was not about creating jobs (not a function of government) but reducing government in size and scope. We were pushing for an end to the Dept. of Education, HUD, Interior, HHS and Energy. We libertarians were also pushing for an end to our unConstitutional occupation of Iraq, Afghanistan, Germany, Japan, the Philippines, etc. and ending foreign aid. Lastly, we were believing the incoming class would help bring an end to the punitive progressive income tax. These are far reaching aims, but the paltry cuts offered are greatly disappointing. Oh, I almost forgot. We were also promised that the incoming Repubs would end O-Care. It looks like they will just "make some adjustments" instead. So much for liberty and the Constitution.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
30 Mar 11
@Sam3m1 Why do people blame US companies for no jobs? The outsourcing is a result of NAFTA. If a company outsources it is because NAFTA allows them to do it. Put the blame where it originates and work to get out of THAT. As to the other things you mention, I agree. Go to court to eliminate these bad laws. It seems to be what the liberals are doing to stop voter referendums all across the land. I do agree we are being pitted against one another, and that is why I like mattic's take on things, BOTH parties are to blame. Been saying that for awhile. Tax breaks are not always a bad thing. It encourages growth. But there are loopholes that need to be closed and the whole system revamped. I say throw it out and have a flat tax. @Mattic, I don't know the details of what republicans are doing to overthrow Obamacare, maybe you're correct. But isn't it a bit early to be critical? Can you post a link to any info on just what they're doing about it?
@Taskr36 (13874)
• United States
30 Mar 11
"right now 400 people in the u.s. have assets equal to 150,000,000 of us. common sense tells me that those 400 are using their wealth and influence to take more money from the rest of us." They CAN'T take money from you. That's called theft. No matter how rich they are, the way they got their money is that people GAVE them money. Nobody forced anyone to buy their products. Take Bill Gates. Nobody has forced me to buy Windows, Office, or any other product he profits from. He hasn't "taken" a penny from me. I have CHOSEN to purchase Windows because I prefer it to Linux or Mac OS. People CHOOSE to purchase MS Office even though Openoffice.org provides a nearly identical software for free. Only the government can take money from you by force. It's called a tax. "they pay little or no tax and often increase their profits by eliminating american jobs" Wrong on both counts. The top 1% of earners in this country pay 41% of federal income taxes. Private businesses CREATE jobs. They can't eliminate jobs that they haven't already created themselves. Don't you realize that? You can't fire someone that you didn't hire in the first place. Government however CAN cause job losses by raising taxes on businesses to the point where their only choices are to cut costs, often through layoffs, or passing the cost onto the consumer. "they have successfully pitted us against one another" You're proof that BOTH parties are successfully pitting people against each other. You are here spouting of garbage that you heard from left wing fatmouths and none of it is even true. You're buying all the crap they sell without doing any independent research or actually thinking for yourself.
@laglen (19783)
• United States
30 Mar 11
I think we are almost to the point of no return. Look at what has happened in Greece over entitlements. This is what happens when so many people depend on government. The Tea Party candidates seem to be staying true but all the rest of the bunch are back to business as usual.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
30 Mar 11
1 person likes this
@Taskr36 (13874)
• United States
30 Mar 11
It's not just Greece. Have you seen the violent protests in the UK? When you breed a culture of entitlement people will violently fight against any attempt to wean them off the government teet.
1 person likes this
@laglen (19783)
• United States
31 Mar 11
taskr, you are right, it is not just Greece. It is everywhere and all for the same reason. The honey pot is running dry.
@andy77e (5171)
• United States
29 Mar 11
It is possible that we will end up in a socialist dictatorship, but only because the people want it. The problem is, the Tea Party movement, although a great start, is actually very very small. Most republicans DO NOT want huge cuts in government spending, no matter how much WE TEA PARTYers know that we need those cuts. No matter how many allies we have in Congress, there are dozens more, even on the Republican side, that are completely against cutting spending. And those people do in fact reflect America. Too many Americans do not want to cut spending, no matter how much they complain about the deficit and taxes. A co-worker illustrated this. He's a republican, yet when the Tea Party movement won several seats, he complained that they might cut Social Security and Medicare. I said plainly... um... we don't have money. We can't afford it. His reply? "But people depend on it!"... as if.... by saying that, money magically appeared in the budget simply because someone somewhere was dependent on it. Another illustration is the poll numbers from Wisconsin. 67% agreed that public employees like Teachers, should be required to fund their own health care like the rest of the country does. Yet, only 37% said they shouldn't have the right to use Union bargaining to determine health care benefits. Um... Hello? Those are mutually exclusive. If you want them to pay more, you can't allow them to use Unions to determine their benefits. They'll never agree to less health care benefits. So you can't force them to pay for their own health care, and allow them to Union Bargain for health care benefits. Similarly, a national poll recently found that the majority were very concerned about the national deficit. But the same poll also concluded that the majority is against cutting Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Food Stamps, Welfare, Subsidies and Public Housing... In fact, no one could agree to cut... anything. So.... Stop over spending! Don't cut anything! Don't raise taxes! And we wonder why government doesn't work? Look at the people government represents. There's your clue.
@mattic (282)
• United States
30 Mar 11
I am all for making Congress a voluntary position. Yep, end all pay for Congressional service. Also, cut staffing to one paid secretary. This would assure us of having men and women in Congress who truly had the interests of the country at heart (rather than creating a political career). It would also prevent Congress from wasting our money and their time putting forward asanine legislation.
@andy77e (5171)
• United States
30 Mar 11
There is one issue with that. Corruption. When you make government offices earn nothing, you discourage anyone from taking the job, because the fact is, being in D.C. is expensive. So all the honest people are not going to be interested in spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, in order to be president, one most frustrating, and stressful jobs in the world, for a whooping $50K. As a result, the only people who would be interested in that, would be those who see ways of getting money, off the radar so to speak. It's the same as policy officers. If you research any area that doesn't pay enough, you find police start taking money from criminals to ignore crimes. So, although I agree with the concept in principal, paying politicians nothing always invites corruption. We think it's bad now, it will be far worse if we do that.
@kenzie45230 (3563)
• United States
29 Mar 11
The problem is that we need cuts across the board, and anyone who gets any kind of entitlements doesn't want their program cut at all. Yes, indeed, people are willing to have money stolen from one group of people to give to them. You betcha. What saddens me is that in days past, people not only cared about the people around them, they also cared for their kids, grandkids and future generations. They were willing to sacrifice for themselves so future generations didn't have to do that. But those days are gone. Now, people only care about themselves. One area that needs to be revamped is Social Security, but the lobbyists for senior citizens are good at making sure that never happens. People think that the SS money that came out of their checks was supposed to be for them. But that is either a lie told to people from the beginning or a misunderstanding that the government never addressed. Think about it this way. The official SS site has some pages for the history of SS. They started taking out money from people's pay checks in 1935. The site talks about the first lady who got monthly checks (before that, people who retired merely got back what they put in in a lump sum, since they had not contributed much.) This lady had money taken from her checks starting in 1935 like everyone else. She retire in 1939 and started getting monthly checks on 1940. The total she had paid in was just over $24. She lived to be 100 and in that time period, she was paid over $22,000. When my Dad retired, I learned that most people use up whatever they put in (even if you add 10% interest, pretending that the government had secured these funds and not used them in the general fund like they have) - in 3 years. I did some calculating by using my Dad's record of earnings provided by SS and going to the web site that shows what percentages were taken out each year that he worked. And, sure enough, with what he was receiving in payments, what he paid in would be depleted in 3 years. Guess what. He retired at age 62 (had to because working as a sheet metal mechanic - and having had his lung damaged by asbestos - made it necessary to retire early) and he lived to age 78. So he received money - not to mention Medicare, which although now requires seniors to contribute still costs taxpayers money - for 16 years but what he put in was gone after 3 years. In the business world, this would definitely be a Ponzi scheme and would be illegal. We have to "fix" Social Security, or it will be part of what brings the US totally to its knees. That and getting involved in wars and giving money to other nations when we cannot even feed our own.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
30 Mar 11
In my opinion all 'insurance' is a scheme. But I have not a clue as to how to change that. I'm learning. Used to be, family took care of its elders with help from the community and church. That's pretty much impossible now that we have families scattered and to busy with all working or away from the 'home' base. Used to be that the infirm were taken care of in the home or in institutions run by charities, that to is pretty much gone for the same reasons. Trouble is, we have all these programs because we are a caring society. We recognize that there is a need for someone, or the government to provide for and take care of certain sectors of our society. How to do it without waste or graft is a MAJOR problem I don't see being solved any time soon.
1 person likes this
@bobmnu (8160)
• United States
30 Mar 11
When asked many business will say that the tax issue is not number one but government regulation and oversight departments are. If a company wants to expand they have to fill out and file thousands of pages of paper work to the government. One small business man explained to congress that a hammer costs the government $25.00 and the same hammer could be purchased in the local hardware store for $8.00. The difference was the amount of paper work, regulations and reports that had to be written and filed with the government on the hammer.If the Republicans can help reduce government they will reduce waste and cut the spending too.
@bobmnu (8160)
• United States
30 Mar 11
When asked many business will say that the tax issue is not number one but government regulation and oversight departments are. If a company wants to expand they have to fill out and file thousands of pages of paper work to the government. One small business man explained to congress that a hammer costs the government $25.00 and the same hammer could be purchased in the local hardware store for $8.00. The difference was the amount of paper work, regulations and reports that had to be written and filed with the government on the hammer.If the Republicans can help reduce government they will reduce waste and cut the spending too.
@prabu03 (175)
• India
30 Mar 11
ya this sure they forign country are steal citizens and giving to other i think it is too bad
@Taskr36 (13874)
• United States
29 Mar 11
To be more accurate it's like getting a $660-$1000 discount depending on how you do the math. If you take Rand Paul's plan, and Republicans never will, it would be closer to a $5,000 discount. Of course we're not talking about cars and discounts, we're talking about budgets and deficits and that's really not the same as purchasing a product. What republicans have done is propose legislation that would cut the deficit by $66 billion in 6 months. The plan was $100 billion in the first year, but delays in the budget process have basically turned the plan into a 6 month budget. Is that good enough, not really. If we cut $100 billion a year it would take 15 years to balance the budget. We need to be more aggressive. That said, the democrats did just the opposite when they had a supermajority. Rather than take steps to reduce the record deficits they helped create when Bush was in office they QUADRUPLED the deficit. The republicans currently in office have to fix Obama's mess before they can even touch the one created when Bush was president. They're not doing enough, but at least they are going in the right direction. I would say that if the problems aren't fixed we are headed more towards a socialist totalitarian government rather than a dictatorship. Granted, if we continue to ignore the separation of powers in the constitution and let the president go to war whenever he likes without the consent of congress, you could be right.