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The US Debt

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Just wanted to continue the discussion with more context. China does not have some massive leverage over us. The relationship is far more symbiotic than the myths that get spread around.

Hm, the in 1999 the USA only owed 22% to foreign nations. The amount owed to US individuals/institutions has gone down, but social security has gone up. I'm not really sure where this stuff about China came from? Their share of our debt couldn't of increased that much in 10 years.

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This is nothing new or ground breaking, but I thought it was a good paragraph off Wikipedia that summed up what Blackstar's been saying:

"Despite strong increases in productivity, low unemployment, and low inflation, income gains since 1980 have been slower than in previous decades, less widely shared, and accompanied by increased economic insecurity. Between 1947 and 1979, real median income rose by over 80% for all classes, with the incomes of poor Americans rising faster than those of the rich. Median household income has increased for all classes since 1980, largely owing to more dual-earner households, the closing of the gender gap, and longer work hours, but growth has been slower and strongly tilted toward the very top (see graph). Consequently, the share of income of the top 1%—21.8% of total reported income in 2005—has more than doubled since 1980, leaving the United States with the greatest income inequality among developed nations. The top 1% pays 27.6% of all federal taxes; the top 10% pays 54.7%. Wealth, like income, is highly concentrated: The richest 10% of the adult population possesses 69.8% of the country's household wealth, the second-highest share among developed nations. The top 1% possesses 33.4% of net wealth."

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and yet any attempt to address that unprecedented, entropic, destabilizing difference in income is hysterically attacked by the American Right as "socialism" with probably the bluntest cudgel of all: that it's unpatriotic. as i said in another thread, Democrats are pretty awful; but there's really only 1 party in this country who's actively subversive and holding us back.

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more corporate tax (or lack thereof) madness:

General Electric, the nation’s largest corporation, had a very good year in 2010.

The company reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, and said $5.1 billion of the total came from its operations in the United States.

Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion

Its extraordinary success is based on an aggressive strategy that mixes fierce lobbying for tax breaks and innovative accounting that enables it to concentrate its profits offshore. G.E.’s giant tax department, led by a bow-tied former Treasury official named John Samuels, is often referred to as the world’s best tax law firm. Indeed, the company’s slogan “Imagination at Work” fits this department well. The team includes former officials not just from the Treasury, but also from the I.R.S. and virtually all the tax-writing committees in Congress.

The head of its tax team, Mr. Samuels, met with Representative Charles B. Rangel, then chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, which would decide the fate of the tax break. As he sat with the committee’s staff members outside Mr. Rangel’s office, Mr. Samuels dropped to his knee and pretended to beg for the provision to be extended — a flourish made in jest, he said through a spokeswoman.

That day, Mr. Rangel reversed his opposition to the tax break, according to other Democrats on the committee.

The following month, Mr. Rangel and Mr. Immelt stood together at St. Nicholas Park in Harlem as G.E. announced that its foundation had awarded $30 million to New York City schools, including $11 million to benefit various schools in Mr. Rangel’s district. Joel I. Klein, then the schools chancellor, and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, who presided, said it was the largest gift ever to the city’s schools.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/25/business/economy/25tax.html?hp

but remember, according to Republicans it's teacher pensions that are bankrupting America.

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blame neo-liberal economics. they fucking suck.

and for the record, nothing should be cut. maybe some things made more efficient or consolidated, but mostly just we need a tax hike. a little bit of corporate (but honestly not too much, we will lose even more jobs as a result) and a lot of "redistributive" taxes on the double fucking super upperclass and a little on the upperclass and a tad on the semi-upperclass/notquitemiddleclass.

well, maybe cut u.s. nascar funding. lolz

but before ya tax a lot, you have to spend a deficit reviving your economy. legitimately. and slowly start taxing/balancing your budget. and then once everything is go time, you tax full speed until you balance your budget and create decent services for non-double fucking super upperclass people who work little but hold lotz of money.

oh. what's that? i said redistribution and am therefore a marxistmaoistleninlovingstalinhitler? okay. cool.

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more corporate tax (or lack thereof) madness:

but remember, according to Republicans it's teacher pensions that are bankrupting America.

Yup. And Obama is the one who plucked Imelt out of the private sector and gave him a powerful policy position in the White House.

YES WE CAN!

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Wow, the Pres went on TV the other day to loudly proclaim the biggest spending cuts in recent history. As if that's something to be proud of. Shafting poor people, the elderly, educational programs and the EPA...that'll really jumpstart the economy. The sell-out continues.

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Wow, the Pres went on TV the other day to loudly proclaim the biggest spending cuts in recent history. As if that's something to be proud of. Shafting poor people, the elderly, educational programs and the EPA...that'll really jumpstart the economy. The sell-out continues.

Don't worry. He's going to campaign on increasing taxes on the rich so he can win you back.

This really has been an odd presidency. I don't really know what to think about it.

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Don't worry. He's going to campaign on increasing taxes on the rich so he can win you back.

This really has been an odd presidency. I don't really know what to think about it.

What you should think is that he's a sell-out. He campaigns on a lot of stuff, and says a lot of stuff. But his actions are not much different (outside of social issues like DADT) are identical to Bush in all the ways that matter economically and militarily.

As soon as he started saying "we need to live within our means" , etc., I knew the sell-out was official.

Did he give one mention about the massive, unprecedented unemployment in this country? Not one word about that. Because he's boxed himself in against any new major spending.

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2/3 of US corporations pay nothing in federal income tax, and 70% of foreign corporations operating inside the US pay nothing as well. What's more, many of these same companies still get massive tax rebates despite paying nothing to the federal government. GE for instance made $14.1 billion, paid $0 in taxes, and got a $3.2 billion tax rebate. Even companies which do pay their taxes often do not pay their share. For example, Google has shortchanged the US government $60 billion by paying taxes through Ireland at a much lower rate (2.5%) than the US corporate tax rate (35%).

We wouldn't need to talk about all of these cuts if major corporations were paying their fair share.

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What you should think is that he's a sell-out. He campaigns on a lot of stuff, and says a lot of stuff. But his actions are not much different (outside of social issues like DADT) are identical to Bush in all the ways that matter economically and militarily.

As soon as he started saying "we need to live within our means" , etc., I knew the sell-out was official.

Did he give one mention about the massive, unprecedented unemployment in this country? Not one word about that. Because he's boxed himself in against any new major spending.

He is the President, not a king. For example, a lot of people complain about Gitmo. But, what can Obama do about Guantanamo Bay if Congress refuses to appropriate the funds necessary to build an alternative detention center? With Republican control of the House, it's not like Obama can just steamroll everyone and do everything his supporters ever dreamed of. He is not Jesus Christ, does not walk on water, and can not magically overcome the obstinacy of a political party which is hellbent on simply opposing him no matter what he does.

Actually, Obama has done some pretty remarkable things. Considering the strength of health insurance companies in this country, and how they absolutely trashed Hillary Clinton when she tried to enact change during Clinton's presidency, it's amazing Obama got anything done at all. It cost him dearly though... Now, he can only hope that the Reps don't manage to repeal his health care bill.

People criticize Obama for continuing two wars begun under a previous administration. What is he supposed to do? Say, "oops, we're sorry, we'll just leave now and hope you can figure it out for yourselves."

Obama is trying to regain control of an aircraft which stalled under the previous administration. We were headed toward the ground fast, and it didn't look good, but the man deserves some credit for pulling us out of it. Things are not back to normal, we are not back at cruising altitude, but at least we are on our way back up.

As far as unemployment goes, all anyone can tell is that it is dropping. Obama is not a miracle worker, he can not just snap his fingers and give everyone jobs. There are a couple of reasons unemployment is so high.

-As pension plans have disappeared and people's retirement money was vaporized by the financial crisis, many older workers who should have been retired were forced to return to work.

-Between 12-20 million illegal immigrants are competing with US citizens for jobs, but offering to work for much less, with no benefits, no unemployment insurance, and few of the rights an American worker has.

This labor environment heavily favors large business owners. Labor is a commodity affected by supply and demand. With labor in high supply and business demanding less employees, this is a large business owner's market. What does cutting entitlement programs, unions, and other worker benefits accomplish? It increases the size of the labor pool, meaning higher unemployment, and lower wages, which is great for business owners. This is a class war, and the wealthy are winning.

Obama should have stopped reaching across the aisle a long time ago.

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I agree with what you're saying completely - he's one man, not the entire power of the nation and its government. Not that I'm a Bush supporter, but it irks me that people are quick to defend Obama as "the President, not a king" and yet will go to the ends of the earth to blame all of our problems on Bush. I wish someone wrote that post a few years ago.

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Not that I'm a Bush supporter, but it irks me that people are quick to defend Obama as "the President, not a king" and yet will go to the ends of the earth to blame all of our problems on Bush.

the situations are quite different. i don't think even the most strident Democrat would place the previous administration's problems solely at the feet of Bush, but rather at the feet of The Bush Administration (you will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy...). Obama has no Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and Feith. many of us grow frustrated that there is no concerted effort on the part of this administration to impose it's agenda; the opposite accusation from that leveled against the disastrous actions of the prior administration. if only the Obama administration were as effectual across the spectrum of government power as it's predecessor!

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He is the President, not a king. For example, a lot of people complain about Gitmo. But, what can Obama do about Guantanamo Bay if Congress refuses to appropriate the funds necessary to build an alternative detention center? With Republican control of the House, it's not like Obama can just steamroll everyone and do everything his supporters ever dreamed of. He is not Jesus Christ, does not walk on water, and can not magically overcome the obstinacy of a political party which is hellbent on simply opposing him no matter what he does.

I'm not saying he's a king, but he doesn't even act like a President, i.e., setting the agenda the way Bush did, Clinton did, or Reagan did.

Presidents have the power to drive the debate, whereas this President has the habit of letting outsiders and radicals influence his positions.

CLINTON HAD A REPUBLICAN CONGRESS FOR 6 OF HIS 8 YEARS but he managed to RAISE TAXES ON THE WEALTHY and beat Gingrich when the Repubs tried cutting Medicare and Education during the 1995-96 government shutdown.

REAGAN HAD A DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS THROUGHOUT HIS ENTIRE PRESIDENCY BUT FOUGHT LIKE HELL FOR TAX CUTS AND DEFENSE SPENDING.

Obama had a Democratic Congress and accomplished a watered down health care reform....and a "financial reform" that actually protects Too Big to Fail. Meanwhile, Bush did RAM everything he wanted through Congress.

He is also weak when it comes to fighting for working class positions, and he appointed Wall Street insiders to run his economic policy.

When Republicans are being stubborn in negotiations, rather than say, "Go to hell, I'll take my case to the people", instead he gives the other side everything.

Like I said, why on earth did we get into the conversation of "cutting spending", instead of "fixing unemployment". That's a Republican talking point and he fell right into it.

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The final figures show that the median pay for top executives at 200 big companies last year was $10.8 million. That works out to a 23 percent gain from 2009. The earlier study had put the median pay at a none-too-shabby $9.6 million, up 12 percent....

Pay skyrocketed last year because many companies brought back cash bonuses, says Aaron Boyd, head of research at Equilar. Cash bonuses, as opposed to those awarded in stock options, jumped by an astounding 38 percent, the final numbers show.

And it’s not as if most workers are getting fat raises. The average American worker was taking home $752 a week in late 2010, up a mere 0.5 percent from a year earlier. After inflation, workers were actually making less

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/03/business/03pay.html?_r=1&hp

but remember, it's teacher pensions that are bankrupting the country and we need more tax breaks for the wealthiest few percent.

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Seeing the absurdity and lunacy of people who fail to vote in their own best interest because they're either too lazy or too stupid to get their facts straight has diminished my faith in this "democracy" of late...

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