Spending is the problem

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It amazes me the lack of knowledge of the economy. Liberals are screaming for the Republicans to pass the two-month extension of the payroll tax deduction. This is not a payroll tax deduction reduction. It is a reduction of the Social Security insurance program.

Historically, an employee had 6.2 percent of his salary deducted for Social Security, but an agreement – a bad agreement – was reached in 2010 to lower that to 4.2 percent.

Seniors who scream about Social Security reforms should be screaming now. Why was this reduction approved when Social Security is already broke? Why did Congress not cut the federal income tax by 2 percent instead?

Well, that would have led to having less to spend on things such as the $700,000 given to the University of New Hampshire to study methane gas emissions from dairy cows. They also wouldn’t have the $800,000 to spend on a genital-washing program in Africa. They can’t do without the $113,000 for a video game preservation center in New York. What would we do if the federal government hadn’t spent $765,000 to study how college students use mobile devices for social networking?

Taxes are not the problem. Spending is! Cut the waste and the tax income will be sufficient. However, I do understand the people screaming class warfare. If I was one of the 51 percent of Americans who received entitlements from taxpayers, I wouldn’t want the gravy to run out, either. When you receive your freebie, just remember: The government didn’t pay for it – your neighbor did!

Margaret Thatcher said, “The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money.” Therefore, you might want to help us taxpayers on this runaway spending, because when we run out of money – oh, well!

Mark Canipe, D.Min.

Beech Island, S.C.

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copperhead
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copperhead 12/30/11 - 03:11 am
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Spending is NOT the problem!

Spending is NOT the problem! The problem is not enough tax! We must raise taxes to surpass spending so we can have more of the wonderful programs mentioned. I know that i will gladly do without heat this winter so some africans may learn how to wash themselves. Folks need to support the givernment and be happy to pay ANY percentage of their income to maintain the level of spending the givernment needs to operate. Stop complaining and pay your taxes!

desertcat6
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desertcat6 12/30/11 - 04:05 am
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Thanks for a great letter.

Thanks for a great letter.

Riverman1
86906
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Riverman1 12/30/11 - 06:25 am
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This is the beginning of no

This is the beginning of no one having to pay into social security. Everyone will get it along with free medical care. Along with the other social programs, we've just about eliminated the need for people to work. Who would have thought such a thing were possible? Americans must be the smartest people in the world. Everything is free. Shangri La.

carcraft
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carcraft 12/30/11 - 06:37 am
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Well the rich do have to pay

Well the rich do have to pay thier fair share......doesn't matter what the arguement is, the rich have to pay their fair share...

augusta citizen
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augusta citizen 12/30/11 - 07:53 am
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Thanks Mr. Canipe, your

Thanks Mr. Canipe, your letter is right on target!

skeptic griggsy
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skeptic griggsy 12/30/11 - 08:35 am
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What tripe! By socialism do
Unpublished

What tripe! By socialism do you mean ownership of industries and medical facilities or just any government action you don't approve.If the latter, as Lawrence O'Donnell, notes we are all socialists: it is just a matter of to what degree!
Do you proudly speak of public schools or disdainfully speak of government schools? Do you mean the one percent of taxes that goes for workfare? Yes Pres. Barack Hussein Obama is right in noting that reactionaries called President Theodore Roosevelt a socialist or -even communist! Do you remember Pres.. Eisenhower, that "socialist" who spent billions on roads? Why Sen. Ayn Rand Paul might just think him a socialist and might just prefer that we privatize roads and such!
Why would one gladly stunt the mind with that term socialism as though that automatically stops discussion?
We liberals use socialist programs to further capitalism! Workfare, TAA, unemployment insurance, social security and medicare are demand side programs that indeed do stimulate the economy.
Yes, taxing more the super rich, of whom sixty percent, agree themselves would help pay off the debt! Actually, they depend on taxes for roads to distribute their products, educate workers and so forth!
Again, I laud the patriots such as Warren Buffet and George Soros who do advocate higher taxation on themselves [ Bill O'Rly lies about him!].
Rant and grieve! The Republi-cons are making sure that Obama has a second term! Fewer people are letting their reactionary views concerning social issues to overwhelm their self-interests to view the economy as paramount: why some will go Democratic! The neo-theo-cons- the con-job-servatives- are harming the GOP!
Rant and grieve! We win , you lose as Pres. Reagan would say!

david jennings
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david jennings 12/30/11 - 08:46 am
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Not just spending, frivilous

Not just spending, frivilous spending. Every bill thats passed has to be loaded up with goodies for constituents back home so the career politician can be reelected. I agree just cutting out the waste would go a long way toward solving the budget problem. Canipes got my vote.

skeptic griggsy
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skeptic griggsy 12/30/11 - 09:36 am
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Many of those goodies are
Unpublished

Many of those goodies are essential items. One can ignorantly make light of some programs that one doesn't fathom.
The greatest spending programs are defense and medicare. Let's get a lean, mean fighting machine, not this one loaded with items that the military itself doesn't want.
The problem with medicare is the external expenses. It and social security have very low overhead.
Medicare and the Affordable Care Act are not socialist in the sense of government ownership. That act itself aims for cost reduction. I prefer medicare for all, except us veterans who use the socialist veterans program, to further reduce costs.

augusta citizen
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augusta citizen 12/30/11 - 09:11 am
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david jennings, you're right,

david jennings, you're right, every bill is just loaded up with pork, all of the politicians constantly grabbing at the tax-payer's purse to keep their voters re-electing them. It doesn't matter if it's to keep the entitlement troughs full or make the lobbyists happy or give the folks they represent more funds to spend. I am sick of it all, whether it's free stuff (like government cell phones) or endowments for the arts, or roads that aren't needed, etc. We are in the hole in this country and it needs to stop.

A comment I saw on another blog this morning:

"What do you call it when someone steals someone else's money secretly? Theft. What do you call it when someone takes someone else's money openly by force? Robbery. What do you call it when a politician takes someone else's money in taxes and gives it to someone who is more likely to vote for him? Social Justice."

Disgusting, and almost all of them are guilty of it!

Fundamental_Arminian
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Fundamental_Arminian 12/30/11 - 09:35 am
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Excellent letter! Let's

Excellent letter! Let's remember, though, that with fiat currency there's no such thing as debt. How many trillions does our nation owe? It doesn't matter. We can pay it off today simply by cranking up the printing presses.

The FED knows this. That's why it doesn't hesitate to bail out its pals who need it. Meanwhile we taxpayers who aren't in the loop grow poorer and poorer as our cash loses value.

JRC2024
9287
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JRC2024 12/30/11 - 09:56 am
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carcraft, where have you

carcraft, where have you been. The rich do pay their fair share, it's the other 40 percent or so who do not. That arguement is just too old and has always been around. A cutback on all government programs is the true answer.

skeptic griggsy
39
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skeptic griggsy 12/30/11 - 10:08 am
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Taxation is the proper means
Unpublished

Taxation is the proper means of paying for government services; it is hardly theft! Silly libertarians just love to skirt reality with their stupid platitudes.
The real job creators are not those who having great wealth, put new moneys into investments that don't create jobs, but rather we who buy the goods and services: that is why the stimulus and government subsidies are so important besides keeping people from starving and such. Yes, when Reppubli-cons announce that they are from the government, they mean that they will screw the system in order for Americans to get fed up with the federal government! When they prattle that they want us to have more money in our pockets, they mean that we'll have more expenses for which to pay whereas we Democrats prefer to pay for services with higher taxes so as to allow us to have real spending power [However, with Obama, we've lowered taxes for the many.]. That's the Republicannot sleight of hand and bait and switch!
Ti's a simple matter of making social security solvent. People prevaricate about it. It keeps many of us out of poverty! It is hardly a Ponzi scheme as current payers pay for current beneficiaries: we pay for it ourselves with interest not subject to the vagaries of the stock market [ How I know that! Buy Apple and Amazon!]
Yes to social justice! Yes to social democracy and the regulated, free market!
We need the federal government and other levels of government that can render what we really need and then get our monies' worth!
The Fed sustains the economy. Reactionaries prevaricate about it! Rep. Ron Paul, Sen. Ayn Rand Paul's father, rather than trying to fathom it, prefers conspiracy thinking!
Oh, many creationists are Social Darwinists! I prefer the term Spencer-Randi-ans to denote their selfishness and lack of respect for the downtrodden! You Randroids with your Rand lexicon just are so subjectivistic! Oh, for all her lauding capitalism,Rand did not invest well and had to get social security to keep her afloat for awhile! Well, she got back more than she put in.No hypocrisy! And she and Herbert Spencer calls the downtrodden parasites! What misanthropes!
Politifact and Fact-Check in essence notes that we Democrats fib whilst Repuli-cons prevaricate !Oh, Oh, Politifact has made one colossal error in finding us with our pants on fire with the ad with the man pushing the old lady off the cliff in our denunciation of Rep. Paul Ryan's' plan to change medicare: that would indeed be the end of medicare!
What Republican moderates? Not Gov. Romney-the theo-neo-con-job-servative!

robaroo
796
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robaroo 12/30/11 - 10:23 am
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There certainly is waste in

There certainly is waste in big government, but as David Jennings' comment pointed out everybody wants their pork.

The bulk of the Federal budget goes to military spending, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. That means that meaningful cuts have to come from there.

Doctors in some areas are no longer accepting new Medicare and Medicaid patients. I'm sure you have already read letters from people saying their SS payments aren't enough to make ends meet. Most fighter planes are 20 years old or older.

The Democrats refuse to cut back on any of these programs. Other than Ron Paul, I haven't heard any of the Republicans promising to cut them either.

Demand truth from all candidates - don't accept vague promises. Make them specify which programs they intend to cut and by how much. Otherwise, they will continue to play us for suckers while they vote for special interests.

skeptic griggsy
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skeptic griggsy 12/30/11 - 10:28 am
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No, as many of the rich
Unpublished

No, as many of the rich themselves note that they could pay more. That forty percent pay pay-roll and other taxes. Again, the rich receive much for their taxes!
Oh, some Democrats say that we Democrats are in cahoots with the rich: so we are! I wanted as a new Democrat for us Democrats to be more business- friendly than we were, but we are so beholden to Wall Street! We need it for campaigns! Yes, we must overcome our Wall Street addiction!
Ah, we came out of the Great Depression in '36 but by insisting on balancing the budget our indefatigable pro-business president Franklin Delano Roosevelt- like his indefatigable cousin Pres. Theodore Roosevelt [ pron. rusevelt-long u], reactionaries called him socialist or- communist-, caused the First Great Recession.
Thus, whilst ti's good that we are trying to lay the foundation for reducing the budget, for the next two years we must be wary of overdoing that good thing!
Conspiracy theorists so err as to why government has to do certain things! No plans exist to turn us into full socialism. Our mixed economy is the known moral ideal!It builds upon empirical foundations rather upon laissez-faire shibboleths of scholastic sophistry! Reactionaries,please stop using your perverse, peevish prevarications!

skeptic griggsy
39
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skeptic griggsy 12/30/11 - 10:31 am
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Yes, do demand from
Unpublished

Yes, do demand from politicians what they intent to cut and by how much! We don't want them eviscerating medicare!

Chillen
17
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Chillen 12/30/11 - 10:40 am
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Here's a fun fact I just saw

Here's a fun fact I just saw in an article.

"Every day, the U.S. government takes in $6 billion and spends $10 billion. This means that every day the federal government spends $4 billion more dollars than it has."

The solution is not to tax more. You could tax the so called wealthy 100% of their income and still not come close to balancing out the spending.

Can any of you fine, upstanding, big govt liberals & socialists please tell me how this can continue?

faithson
5261
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faithson 12/30/11 - 11:17 am
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It has been and continues to

It has been and continues to be a fool's errand to think that getting our fiscal house in order will only come from 'spending cuts'. Case in point is the federal highway funding system. There is not enough money (revenue) to keep up with the infrastructure needs of the nation. What, let it all deteriorate or raise taxes on gas. A fool would allow the roof of his home to leak at the expense of destroying the interior structure. I see a lot of foolish idealism on these boards, and not by progressives.

Little Lamb
46919
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Little Lamb 12/30/11 - 11:21 am
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Faithson, fool's errand or

Faithson, fool's errand or not, we need at least to try. Just one program at a time. Cut 5% and watch what happens. Then the next program; cut 5% and see what happens. Just one at a time, rather than handwringing and doing nothing.

justthefacts
22706
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justthefacts 12/30/11 - 11:26 am
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"There is not enough money

"There is not enough money (revenue) to keep up with the infrastructure needs of the nation." There would be if it didn't take three $25 a hour workers to dig a hole.

Chillen
17
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Chillen 12/30/11 - 11:36 am
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@faithson. How ironic that

@faithson. How ironic that you would bring up infrastructure spending.

Our federal government should be spending in 3 areas:
1. BASIC Infrastructure development & maintenance (most should be done by the states)
2. Defending our borders (does NOT include being the world's police dept)
3. Enforcing laws that keep us from harming each other

That is it. All the rest of the spending can step aside.

Let's tackle some REAL spending problems - of which there are hundreds of thousands. For example - the Dept of Education, the EPA, obama's vacation & party expenses, foreign aid, welfare (of all types), social security, medicare, Homeland "Remove American Freedoms" Security, etc. How about the fact that federal employee pay is at an all time high in 2011? While the rest of us have been getting pay cuts, they have been getting pay raises.

Washington DC is a money black hole. And barack obama has doubled the size of it.

We are at a critical juncture in this nation - one path will lead to recovery and the other path will lead to economic calamity.

Choose your path carefully. We have little time to save this nation.

bailmeout4
0
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bailmeout4 12/30/11 - 11:41 am
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One of the problems is that

One of the problems is that the layperson cannot understand tax code. Taxes are paid in rates and percentages..so for the 47% that want the rich to pay their fair share...a percentage of a very large number is bigger than a percentage of a small number? Get it? So the 32% that I pay is probably more than 10 households on my street combined. 32%%!!!!!! How much more do you want?????

bailmeout4
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bailmeout4 12/30/11 - 11:52 am
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Here is something to think

Here is something to think about...Its harsh, but...

We are in a period of reverse evolution. The industrious, wealthly folks are waiting longer to have children so they can finish their education, start careers...etc and having few children, while the poor uneducated have more than 2 children(more children than just to replace themselves). Unfortunately, as we all know, its difficult for a child to break out of the vicious poverty cycle.

This has been going on for about 40-50 years. At some point as someone posted above in a quote from Thatcher...there wont be enough industrious folks around to keep up the demand.

http://www.freakonomics.com/2011/06/10/the-rich-vs-poor-debate-are-kids-...

Chillen
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Chillen 12/30/11 - 12:08 pm
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@bailmeout4. I believe what

@bailmeout4. I believe what you are speaking about in your 10:52 post is called Idocracy. If you haven't watched the movie, you should check it out.

When the govt dependent & uneducated have 3 times more children at shorter intervals (every 15-20 years instead of every 30 years), then eventually our society will break down.

Our government is rewarding poor choices, lack of education and lack of desire (in most cases). And they are punishing success (unless it is government derived success - like being a politician or a friend of a politician). It is being done on purpose. They are so very close to total control they can taste it.

That is not mean, it is just a fact.

I think eventually us like minded folks will need to start our own country. Sadly, the USA model is not working anymore (mostly because we are not living in the original model - we are living in the Nanny States of America - guaranteed to breed the self reliance and work ethic right out of you).

Asitisinaug
3
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Asitisinaug 12/30/11 - 01:27 pm
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I agree 100%, cut spending on

I agree 100%, cut spending on all non-essential items. However, although I do not like it, it appears that we may have to raise taxes even if for a limited time in order to reduce the defecit. This should only be done for a limited time and for debt reduction combined with spending reductions...and not ones like Obama proposes to take place in 10 years but ones that take place immediately.

Basically, the same problems as illegal immigration. Properly secure the borders and then decide how / which illegals to remove. Well, stop the frivilous spending and then decide how best to reduce the defecit.

However, with people like Nancy Pelosi preaching to us about paying more taxes for the good of the people as she stays in her $10,000.00 per night suite at the Four Seasons in Hawaii not much is likely to change. The continued use of private planes at our expense so she can visit her home often should be added to the list of wasteful spending which should be illegal.

bubbasauce
22072
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bubbasauce 12/30/11 - 01:47 pm
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Talk about excessive

Talk about excessive spending, has anyone noticed the city replacing perfectly good red light support poles with brand new poles. This is an outrage and an example of wasteful spending that has to be stopped. I would love to hear their excuse for this, probably found one of the welds with a crack in it and figured they all needed replaced. By God do not dare repair anything, lets spend some of the tax payers money and get nice, pretty new ones. Again I say, it is easy to spend someone else's money! The politicians and city officials in Augusta need to quit acting like all of the politicians in Washington, D.C. QUIT SPENDING!

Chillen
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Chillen 12/30/11 - 01:53 pm
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@bubbasauce. As a mere 50%

@bubbasauce. As a mere 50% of the American public tries to get Washington DC under control, local city, county & state governments are busy as beavers spending your hard earned money. They are laughing at us as they spend because virtually NO ONE is paying attention.

Do not take your focus off of them also.

Little Lamb
46919
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Little Lamb 12/30/11 - 02:39 pm
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Asitisinaug wrote: It appears

Asitisinaug wrote:

It appears that we may have to raise taxes even if for a limited time in order to reduce the defecit. This should only be done for a limited time and for debt reduction combined with spending reductions.

We have seen the folly of "temporary" tax reductions (both the Bush-era income tax cuts and now the Robert Reich payroll tax cuts). Once they get instituted, no one has the political courage to undo it when the time runs out. It would be the same with a "temporary" tax increase. No one would want to change things when the time limit ran out.

augusta citizen
9692
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augusta citizen 12/30/11 - 03:51 pm
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faithson, there is plenty of

faithson, there is plenty of spending that can be cut. The letter writer named but a few, but things like studying methane gas emissions from dairy cows is one I had heard of before. There are crazy things like that being done all the time. Grants given to study totally useless things and it's just a slap in the face to the taxpayers. As Chillen mentioned, how about the Obama's vacations and parties, extragavant in your face spending. It goes on and on, if all of the total junk is cut, then someone can talk to me about more taxes, but all of the politicians want to keep piling more and more pork into every bill. I also agree that the state and local governments are right in there jumping on the useless spending bandwagon too. Everybody wants new parks and walking trails and street lights and on and on. I will never vote for any SPLOST or anything else that is a tax increase. Enough already!

burninater
9680
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burninater 12/30/11 - 03:54 pm
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I'm all for deep spending

I'm all for deep spending cuts across the board, and I think we'd have more political will to do so if people didn't start blubbering, crying, and pointing fingers as soon as their rural post office branch, for example, is closed.

Little Lamb
46919
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Little Lamb 12/30/11 - 04:04 pm
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Amen, Burninater.

Amen, Burninater.

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