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Thread: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

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    Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    .... they can't be serious ....

    ... but they are ....



    Ah, Democrats: the gift that keeps on giving. To Republicans.



    So the Democrats are drawing their line in the sand: at $6 billion in spending cuts.

    A top Senate Democrat said Sunday that the $6 billion in additional spending cuts that his party offered is the limit Democrats can accept – drawing a line well short of Republicans’ goal with less than two weeks to go before a government shutdown if the two sides can’t agree.

    Sen. Richard J. Durbin of Illinois, the second-ranking Democrat in the chamber, said the $6 billion proposal, released Friday, has “pushed this to the limit” on domestic spending. That comment stands in sharp opposition to a House Republican bill containing an additional $57 billion in cuts below 2010 spending.

    Republicans should take up cudgels over this. $6 billion is nothing: Congress spent $3.3 trillion in 2010. $6 billion is 0.001 of that, a number that rounds down to about zero. Nothing...

    Democrats are saying in essence that every dollar of federal spending is sacred, that spending is never coming down, and that government has a prior claim on the wealth of generations of Americans unborn. I don’t usually give advice to politicians, but I’d make a marquee message out of that fact: Even after the shellacking, Democrats are willing to cut nothing of any significance. This isn’t shaping up to be a replay of 1995; it’s shaping up to be a replay of 2010.

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    Re: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    If the Republicans were actually proposing serious cuts to entitlements, I might be a little more sympathetic to them. But they aren't. They're cutting discretionary spending, which is at historically normal levels and which has far less waste per dollar than the entitlements do. Although I'm sure there are some individual programs and projects that are wasteful, it is far from desirable to cut discretionary spending overall. Unless most of that $57 billion is in the Pentagon budget, I'm highly skeptical that they've found that much waste that they're willing to cut.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 03-07-11 at 01:41 AM.
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    Re: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    If the Republicans were actually proposing serious cuts to entitlements, I might be a little more sympathetic to them. But they aren't.
    "Our budget, under the leadership of our Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, will specifically deal with entitlement reform."

    Boehner on Entitlement Reform: Yes, We’re Serious

    Boehner Challenges Obama on Entitlements: ‘I Said It Right to His Face’

    Boehner Dares to Touch the Third Rail: Social Security

    and so on and so forth.

    much of discretionary spending isn't just wasteful, it's actively harmful (agricultural subsides, for example); there is no good reason not to snatch off the low-hanging fruit as we approach the entitlements.
    Last edited by cpwill; 03-07-11 at 02:16 AM.

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    Re: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    but seriously; 6 Billion? that's like when Obama tried to make a name for himself as a cost-cutter after the 'Stimulus' bill by ordering the executive agencies to try to find ( :puts pinkie to lips: ) 100 Million Dollars in savings.

    This isn't a "cut", it's cotton candy la-la land savings; it's less than a rounding error in the fraudulent portion of Medicare.

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    Re: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    Ya 6 Billion clearly isn't enough to be a real solution and its not part of any greater plan for the next few years/decades to reduce the debt, so every new Congress is going to revisit these cuts they dont have staying power. However... while I agree with the Republicans on this one their plan isn't a solution either, again because like the Dems it doesnt go far enough. Once they have a workable plan, heck even if its one I don't like but still gets us to a seriously lower debt, they can justify spending time and energy attacking Dems. But if the choice remains between the two separate plans, I really don't care because neither is enough and isn't a solution. So my only choice is between two wrong answers.

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    Re: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    That's a hopeful sign, but what I meant is that they should be cutting spending there instead of screwing around with discretionary spending which really isn't that big of a problem. If anything we need MORE discretionary spending until the economy recovers.

    Quote Originally Posted by cpwill
    much of discretionary spending isn't just wasteful, it's actively harmful (agricultural subsides, for example); there is no good reason not to snatch off the low-hanging fruit as we approach the entitlements.
    Sure, eliminate any wasteful programs in the discretionary budget. But there just aren't very many of them, outside of the DoD. One of two things will happen: Either they'll end up making some token cuts to truly wasteful projects so that they can pretend like they're solving the problem, or they'll start cutting truly important discretionary programs that aren't mere waste.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 03-07-11 at 03:01 AM.
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    Re: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    Quote Originally Posted by Wiseone View Post
    Ya 6 Billion clearly isn't enough to be a real solution and its not part of any greater plan for the next few years/decades to reduce the debt, so every new Congress is going to revisit these cuts they dont have staying power. However... while I agree with the Republicans on this one their plan isn't a solution either, again because like the Dems it doesnt go far enough. Once they have a workable plan, heck even if its one I don't like but still gets us to a seriously lower debt, they can justify spending time and energy attacking Dems. But if the choice remains between the two separate plans, I really don't care because neither is enough and isn't a solution. So my only choice is between two wrong answers.
    Republicans plan for this fiscal year cuts more than the Democrats does, and they are planning on starting the work of reforming entitlements (the gorilla in the room) next fiscal year with the upcoming budget. If they can do that, then we're getting there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar
    That's a hopeful sign, but what I meant is that they should be cutting spending there instead of screwing around with discretionary spending which really isn't that big of a problem.
    discretionary spending is still wasteful (and as mentioned, some of it is quite harmful). when you decide to tighten your own budget, you sell the expensive car and buy a decent used one along with cutting down on the number of times you eat out.

    If anything we need MORE discretionary spending until the economy recovers.
    actually the more discretionary spending we have the slower the recovery will be. hop in here if you'd like to take part in that tangle.

    Sure, eliminate any wasteful programs in the discretionary budget. But there just aren't very many of them, outside of the DoD.
    i imagine they could probably start here. there is quite alot of useless stuff outside the DOD. Agricultural and "renewable energy" subsidies just happen to be my favorite whipping boys.
    Last edited by cpwill; 03-07-11 at 05:46 AM.

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    Re: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    6 Billion?.....

    I wasnt exactly thrilled at the Republican's effort to cut a 100 Billion mouse fart from a 4 trillion dollar hurricane.......but at least it was something. 6 Billion on the other hand......laughable at best.

    .....if anyone ever had any doubt that all Democrat roads lead to Bankruptcy and only Bankruptcy......let those doubts end.
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    Re: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    If the Republicans were actually proposing serious cuts to entitlements, I might be a little more sympathetic to them. But they aren't. They're cutting discretionary spending, which is at historically normal levels and which has far less waste per dollar than the entitlements do. Although I'm sure there are some individual programs and projects that are wasteful, it is far from desirable to cut discretionary spending overall. Unless most of that $57 billion is in the Pentagon budget, I'm highly skeptical that they've found that much waste that they're willing to cut.
    Oh please.......the liberal whining that will ensue if Republicans cut any of the almighty entitlements will be deafening.......
    ..
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    Re: Democrats Counter Proposal: Only Cut $6Bn

    Quote Originally Posted by Badmutha View Post
    Oh please.......the liberal whining that will ensue if Republicans cut any of the almighty entitlements will be deafening.......
    Solving the entitlement problem is the only way to long-term fiscal responsibility. The side-shows with discretionary spending that are being proposed are more of a way for congresspersons to show the voters how much they care, than a serious attempt to solve the problem. As I said, I'm all in favor of cutting out harmful discretionary spending (especially agricultural subsidies and the DoD) but there just isn't that much of it.

    As for the entitlements, social security can be made solvent with a few minor adjustments. By continuing to raise the retirement age by two months per year, and by indexing SS payments to a more accurate measure of inflation, we can keep it solvent. The Republicans have said that they're going to take it up, and Obama has displayed willingness to work with them on the issue.

    Medicare/Medicaid are much more difficult to solve. These are much bigger problems looming on the fiscal horizon. Hopefully the new health care reform law will help rein in the costs, but it doesn't go nearly far enough in terms of cost controls. Ultimately I think we're going to have to do things that make consumers feel some of the cost of their medical expenses. The "Cadillac Tax" on expensive health care plans is a start; we should start taxing ALL health benefits as regular income to break the link between health insurance and employment. We're also going to need some laws that create a favorable environment for high-deductible plans, so that consumers will be able to protect themselves against the risk of a serious medical bill wiping them out, but still having to pay out of pocket for routine expenses.
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