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  • #18
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    How can someone who has never had to balance a family budget or worked at a real job understand economics? I remember the special report where the statement was made that Americans don't understand economics and shoudn't have to. According to Capitol Hill, workers in this country have bottomless pockets and with the weekly cost of living increases, plus taxes, folks now need what to live? Perhaps it's politicians who have led naive and sheltered lives who don't understand economics. Take from workers, give to those that won't! Take yourself to the voting booth and replace this lunacy.
  • #24
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    Little addition: take from this county, and the workers/taxpayers, and give to countries that burn American flags and chant death slogans. There would be a sensible cut to start with. All the workers out of work, put that money here where it actually helps those who the money really belongs to. Would the nation as a whole vote for the billions sent to other countries? You can't buy these countries, so it's a total waste.
  • #44
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    Ayn Rand warned us about the coming of Mob Rule by Bureaucrats. We didn't heed her warning about the future as tax slaves to Big Bro and the Democrats allowed their Party to be taken over by the Orwellians. Most think it is too late for America to recover now.
  • #69
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    @BossTweed It don't look good. Lawmakers pick and choose which laws to break/enforce, raise taxes which cripple workers and the economy, (the buck stops when taken as taxes), exempt themselves from laws which the country has to live by, which tells everyone there is something wrong with the law, turned the justice system into a for profit cooperation/business, send our factories to Mexico putting millions out of a job and millions their homes, opened the country to illegals, who drive down labor, hurting legal workers who can't compete (as they have to pay taxes). A complete overhaul of the currently in office might help. No one repeats.
  • #37
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    Without any doubt. Thanks Politix for allow us this access to this very articulate and intelligent work. These gentlemen concisely voiced what so many feel but just can't put into words that the everyday citizen can comprehed. There is hope!
  • #45
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    Facts mixed with fantasies.

    "...sequester cuts will consist of a measly $85.4 billion..." Yea, I drop that at lunch.

    "But government doesn't produce anything. When it spends money, that money has to come from people in the private sector who have produced." What do banks produce? Wall Street? Insurance companies? When the government spends money, doesn't it frequently GO to the private sector? Companies like Lockheed, Northrup, General Motors, and Morton-Thiokol, are all producing for the government as buyer. They don't employ slave laborers, either.

    "Wars aside, from the Founding era through the nineteenth century, the federal government never cost Americans more than 3 percent of GDP..." Wars aside... that's a pretty big aside, isn't it? Okay, you delete the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Mexican War, the Civil War, the Indian Wars and the Spanish American War from the math for the time period up to the 20th century, then deduct the cost of WW1, WW2, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Cold War, Grenada, Panama, the War on Drugs, the War on Terror, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq since the beginning of the 20th century and show us the percentage of the GDP for that time period.

    If you aren't telling the whole truth, you are still lying.
  • #54
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    $85.4 billion =$285 for every man woman and child in the states vs our $1 trillion+ annual deficit ($3,500 per capita).

    Banks produce capital opportunities - if you are on a slow track you make a deposit (make long term gains over other people's short term needs), fast track - take out a loan and purchase something you couldn't otherwise afford (ex. a car to drive to work). Wall street is like a fancier "bank" which trades in company ownership instead of money.

    Insurance companies produce security. Put another way, it allows the penalty for failure to be spread over a large group.

    Before the government spends money it has to take it. When we spend money we first have to earn it (benefit the person who gives us the money).

    Good note on the war aside issue. Government is about 18% of GDP. Even if we considered defense spending as 1/3 of spending (its actually 17% currently) that would be 6% of GDP. 6+3 would still give us only half of the federal GDP spending we have today.
  • #28
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    He bases his theory off a false premise, that our economy is not built on consumer spending. To deny that simple fact is to deny the driver of our economy since WW2. As an economist this is ideological garbage and should be treated as such.
  • #35
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    “Mountains of academic studies show how government expansions reduce economic growth:
    1.Public Finance Review reported that "higher total government expenditure, no matter how financed, is associated with a lower growth rate of real per capita gross state product."
    2.The Quarterly Journal of Economics reported that "the ratio of real government consumption expenditure to real GDP had a negative association with growth and investment," and "growth is inversely related to the share of government consumption in GDP, but insignificantly related to the share of public investment."
    3.A Journal of Macroeconomics study discovered that "the coefficient of the additive terms of the government-size variable indicates that a 1% increase in government size decreases the rate of economic growth by 0.143%."
    4.Public Choice reported that "a one percent increase in government spending as a percent of GDP (from, say, 30 to 31%) would raise the unemployment rate by approximately .36 of one percent (from, say, 8 to 8.36 percent)." - http://www.articledashboard.com/Article/Keyne...

    http://www.swifteconomics.com/2011/08/04/aust...

    http://www.progress.org/2009/keynes.htm

    and there is plenty more idealogical garbage out there, but by all means, lets not learn from Japan's mistake or learn from Chile's success.
  • #43
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    Keynesian economics was discredited long ago - many young people, never having been taught economics, do not realize that and are ignorantly repeating the mistaken theories of 50 years ago.
  • #46
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    @DerivePI Which completely ignores my point... consumer spending is what drives our economy and isn't what drives Japan's or Chile's economy.
  • #47
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    @blnelson2 Keynesian economics is what Reagan used to get out of the recession, it's what GW Bush used to get out of his mini recession, and is what stopped the free fall during the great recession. To say it was 'discredited long ago' is simply ignorant.
  • #50
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    @AceLuby Socialists, Marxists, and Communists ALL agree with you. Too many people are still fighting the last election. America chose a Third World Collectivist Nightmare future for our kids. We now must Surrender, Submit and OBEY the Will of The Obama.
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  • #11
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    I always enough economic analyses that apply political ideology instead of math. Not that someone from an institute with Ayn Rand in its name should be expected to grasp math, but it would be a refreshing change.
  • #48
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    @blnelson2 Ad hominem? Hardly. There is an undeniable similarity between Ms Rand's fanciful "Objectivism" and the content of this opinion piece: neither address the real world in terms other than of its own making. I repeat, an economic analysis that fails to use math is useless, and, coming from Randians, not a surprise at all.
  • #61
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    @DARSB The credibility of Randians is nil when they find it necessary to speak to "tiny amounts" yet bring up Solyandra which is a "tiny amount" in the grand picture YET they do not find it applicable to speak to the boondoggle known as the "virtual fence". I look to see who writes the Op-eds and when I saw the Ayn Rand name I was just moving past this when i saw your post. I agree with you here and to those who wrote this? Whatever. You people are lunatic fringe. You won't hold your own responsible but you will point fingers at "the other side". That neither responsible or credible.
  • #62
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    @DARSB The point is that the article is not an economic analysis, it is a philosophical analysis. Until proper limits are placed upon government, debating the math is pointless. Think of this analogy: if a car is speeding towards a cliff at 150mph, does it really matter if it slows down to 135mph? The 15mph difference will not prevent the car form going over, it will only delay the inevitable.
  • #64
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    @jessejaymes The point about Solyndra is not about the "tiny amount", it is that government has no business in taking tax dollars from productive citizens (or borrowing it) and investing it in a private company, regardless of the outcome. Financing Solyndra would have been wrong even if it produced a $500 million gain for the government instead of a loss. The loss only exacerbates the problem. Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism values personal responsibility and does not advocate merely pointing fingers at the other side. Randians take personal responsibility for their actions and believe in individual rights.(Note that famous Ayn Rand readers Alan Greenspan and Paul Ryan are sometimes mistaken as Objectivists but display no virtues of the philosophy and do not exemplify Objectivism).
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  • #38
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    The Authors follow Ayn Rands principals. Ayn Rand warned us about the obvious horrors of Mob Rule and the culture of mediocracy and tax slavery to the Orwellian Elites which would be the norm under the civic death grip of Big Brother. In Nov, majority voter choose mediocracy over exceptionalism. Now we all must lower our standards and our expectations for positive out comes.
  • #102
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    Electing Reagan marked the point of lowered standards.

    Any presidential field that includes Donald Trump as a serious candidate is pitiful indeed.

    Compared to all the republicans who ran Obama was clearly the best candidate. You can call that damning with faint praise, but no rational person can deny it.
  • #7
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    You are 60 years too late to start whining about the deficit. America has been running a guns and butter economy since 1953. Toss in the moron bush's guns and butter and tax cuts economy (and keeping the wars in the middle east off the books) and you have screwed yourselves into the ground.
  • #21
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    @PoliticalSpice I saw that. I'm not sure that's a solution but I asked Ernest Payne. He implies he is much smarter so I want to hear what he suggests.
  • #23
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    @EzraBlade Watching elections of all types over the last fourty or so years leads to the conclusion that the smart politicians suggest nothing, they just talk and let you think they said something you agree with, that, unfortunatelly is what wins elections most of the time.
  • #3
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    And a 50% cut in the President's/First lady's Vacation budget. The EPA, Oil Subsidies, Farm Bills , Department of Education- we spend more per child worldwide, and we are in the toilet (Maybe focus on education over social engineering and sex ed). And maybe demand the Obama admin stop spending like this.

    By not using the Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiative to group orders from multiple agencies in order to get lower prices, the government is overspending as much as $50 billion annually according to the General Accountability Office

    $3.3 million to bail out a failing Alaska tourist boat that he says is "sinking private business" vying for the same customers; $505,000 to promote specialty hair and beauty products for cats and dogs; and $97,000 for floating outhouses for Oregon fishermen.

    $17.8 million in aid to China last year to improve the Asian giant’s social services and clean up its environment.

    The U.S. Agency for International Development provided $10 million to a Pakistani arts organization to adapt “Sesame Street” for Pakistani toddlers. The money will also help pay for the creation of 130 episodes of the show.

    484,000 by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to build a Mellow Mushroom pizzeria in Arlington, TX. Mellow Mushroom is a national chain known for its use of hippie and drug themes.

    The National Science Foundation spent $131,000 on robot dragons designed to mimic human responses to help teach preschoolers language skills.

    $25,000 federal grant, visitors to the Milwaukee Public Museum will now be able to experience a “3-D high-definition, full-color true holographic or holographic-like exhibit of a virtual mummy unwrapping.”

    The Inspector General for the U.S. Office of Personnel Management says “the amount of post-death improper payments is consistently $100-$150 million annually, totaling over $601 million in the last five years
  • #5
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    Exactly! Concidering we outspend the next 9 biggest militaries combined in the world by a two thirds margin per year, I hardly think it would hurt or harm our ability to defend ourselves as the war mongers and fear mongers would have us believe, although it might hurt the pockets of the war corporations and their lackies, something I'm all for...
  • #6
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    @drpeeper Problem with is your history of deceptive and dishonest statements is such I don't believe your claims and therefore ignore everything else you suggest.
  • #8
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    @PoliticalSpice Of course, you hate reality. We know that.

    So, these are budget numbers straight from the Obama years- You must agree with them all. Comical.
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  • #99
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    Anti-trust is not aimed at companies that are too big, but companies that become a monopoly. Whether you think it's wise or not, it is interstate trade and thus constitutional.

    "-- Corralling older Americans into the government's own unsustainably expensive health insurance scheme"

    There is nothing "unsustainable" about Medicare other than the completely unsustainable American medical care system in general. The most expensive national health care system in the industrial world costs about 12% of GDP. Our medical care is pushing toward 20% of GDP. The difference is $1 trillion off our total GDP.

    It was military spending that brought down the Soviet Union, it's likely to be medical spending that brings down the US.

    You claim that, wars aside, the federal government never cost the country more than 3% of GDP before the 20th century. I would like to see where you got that figure. In my research I use GDP after WWII, because I find WWII and before numbers in GNP, not GDP. I find no such numbers at all before around 1879. So, please give your source, I would love to have it.

    When I look at the pre-WWI numbers I am amazed at how many recessions and depressions this country had, and how bad they were. Post WWII this economy was one continuous boom by comparison. Ok, Reagan and the Bush family did their best to end that, and they were quite successful. In the 19th century this country went through so many recessions and depressions it is amazing it survived at all, and they were so bad anything after looks easy.

    Oh, and you were right to say "aside from war", because military spending was the big driver of debt before WWII. Since WWII there has been no significant reduction in military spending to allow a judgement of it's effect. Yet, the debt to GDP ratio, from Truman through Carter, went down continuously. It has been only under anti-tax republican presidents that the trend was ended.

    The entire post is a compilation of deceptions and lies. You may well be a Randian, but you are most certainly no constitutionalist.
  • #98
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    What a mass of BS and lies.

    "They claim that when government spends, the economy grows, when government shrinks, the economy collapses, and so cutting government spending could provoke another recession."

    Neither Obama nor anyone else of significance says that.

    Keynesian economics is a method of resolving an economic failure, not a system for government under long term conditions. For it's purpose it works so well that Keynesian economics explains pretty much all economic growth under Reagan/Bush I and Bush II. However, Keynesian economics calls for reduced deficit spending under conditions of prosperity.

    "Historically, substantial cuts in the rate at which government spending grew, such as the one in Canada in the 1990s, have led not to economic collapse but economic expansion."

    Yet you do not include any link to any stats to back that up. All you give is an assertion, and you include Estonia as your only other example. You use a country most of us haven't even thought of in years as your example? Canada we know, Estonia? Again, where are your stats? How much of the Canadian cuts were to military spending?

    "Those who claim that the sequester will harm the economy are really saying, "If we take money from the individuals and businesses who earned it and give it to politicians and bureaucrats, we'll achieve prosperity - but if we allow them to keep what they earned, we'll sink into poverty.""

    That is a pure lie on your part. No one is saying that other than people like you. I note you do not say we should allow the people who really produce wealth, the workers, to keep what they earn by their work. You say businesses, but not workers.

    Oh, and you say this about Canada, " the debt-to-GDP ratio began a rapid decline - it is now at about 34 percent...". Guess what, that is where the US debt was before Reagan. Before Reagan only two things ran that ratio up, depressions and war. After Reagan one thing was added, Republican presidents. Clinton reduced the debt to GDP ratio, and Obama inherited a depression.

    " When America was created, the Founding Fathers assigned to it a strictly defined role: to protect the individual's rights to life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness - "

    Another lie. Property does not appear in the official version of that line. The only way you can include it is if you expand your proper role of government from just freedom to include safety. You see, your other lie, that the only role of government is to insure freedom is false, safety is the other role. If it's now, why do we even have police? Why do we have prisons? Prisons deprive people of freedom.

    In your list of things the government does you apparently think they should not do you include things like professional licensing. The examples you give include barbering and real estate sales, but you don't mention lawyers and doctors. Above all you pretend this is something the *federal* government should not do, which is the only topic covered by your main theme. In the real word, professional licensing is almost totally done at the state level, and thus is absolutely allowed by the constitution under the 10th amendment. Better read the constitution.

    When you do read the constitution you will find much more that the government is allowed to do. The federal government's writ runs from bankruptcy to telling you what time of day it is.

    Regulating interstate trade is in there, as well as international trade. Whether or not establishing import quotas is wise, it is international trade. When you buy a coffee maker that counts 12 cups as six ounce cups, or a cord of wood that doesn't fit the legal definition, they are breaking laws, those laws being clearly constitutional.
  • #93
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    Yes. The big they is trying a cheap lie that can easily be disproven. The government body should be embarrassed by a pitiful offer like that. We need the real deal. The plan that will actually work. Even the time that is wasted talking about this dumb plan will cost us dearly.
  • #87
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    Yes I absolutely agree or founding forefathers would be embarrassed my the incompetence of our current government. They need to cut government spending but it should start with the outrageous benefits Congress have given themselves. Imagine a 100% pension a full health care for the rest of your left with just one term in office.
  • #86
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    definitely!I'm willing to bet there are more than a few unemployed accountants out there who can find 1,000,000 ways to trim the budget. You can't believe how much waste there probably is. I what are also recommend that we cut your pay I'm all government employees by 25 percent.
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