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Thread: Trillion-dollar deficits as far as the eye can see, and hardly a voice of caution to be heard

  1. #1

    Trillion-dollar deficits as far as the eye can see, and hardly a voice of caution to be heard

    https://thehill.com/opinion/campaign...not-a-voice-of

    In the old days, a decade or so ago, Democrats would have assailed Donald Trump's failure on federal deficits; instead of eliminating it, as promised, the deficit has doubled to a trillion dollars as far as the eye can see.

    Republicans would be in full fury over the spending schemes of Democratic presidential candidates; even the mainstream moderates propose huge increases for health care, education and the social safety net for the disadvantaged.

    Yet deficits, as a political issue, are dead.

    The political impact always was exaggerated, but out-of-control deficits were a staple of opposition rhetoric. There invariably was some budget-balancing blue-ribbon group, the most famous being the Simpson-Bowles Commission.

    For Democrats, the pressing urgency of unmet needs in health care, education, infrastructure and the social safety net far outweigh any rising debt. They favor tax hikes, mainly on the rich, to reverse the huge 2017 Republican tax cuts, but there's less premium on the green eyeshade test of paying for all spending initiatives.

    Most Republicans strongly want to keep those tax cuts — the only significant achievement of three years of party rule — and have little interest in tackling politically popular entitlements. In the years the Republican Party controlled both houses of Congress and the White House, it focused only on gutting the Affordable Care Act.

    This has become the Trump Party, which overshadows the old Republican battle lines between budget balancers and tax cutters. This Republican executive is a tax cutter and budget buster.

    As well as the politics, Democrats have a strong policy basis for their position. Early this year, the two most prominent Democratic economists — former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers and Jason Furman, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, both under Barack Obama — wrote an influential article citing structural declines in interest rates. This means that “policymakers should reconsider the traditional fiscal approach that has often wrong-headedly limited worthwhile investments in such areas as education, health care and infrastructure,” they said.

    “Politicians and policymakers should focus on urgent social programs, not deficits,” they advised.

    They don't go as far as the Modern Monetary Theorists who basically argue the sky is the limit on debt unless inflation takes off. Instead, Summers and Furman claim a key is that the federal debt — as a percentage of the economy — stays at a relatively stable 3 percent to 4 percent, where it has been for the past five years.

    The Republican deficits hawks, most recently former House Speaker Paul Ryan, have been rendered obsolete, as least as long it’s the party of Trump.

    Even back in the 1970s, however, some Republicans embraced what supply-side propagandist Jude Wanniski called the “Two-Santa Theory” — namely, to counter Democrats' support for popular spending programs, Republicans should favor huge tax cuts without concern for the deficit. (Ronald Reagan once joked he didn't worry about the deficit, as it was “big enough to take care of itself.”)

    Moreover, the Republican cries about the evils of big deficits have been more rhetorical than real, although the general perception of Democrats as more fiscally profligate is a canard.

    Under Reagan and George H.W. Bush, the federal budget deficit doubled. The deficit was $255 billion when Bill Clinton came into office; at the end of his term, there were four straight small surpluses. (This along with the surplus at the end of Lyndon Johnson's presidency are the only ones in the last 60 years.)

    The deficit also soared under George W. Bush, especially at the end of his term, with the economic crisis.

    Obama inherited a massive $1.4 trillion shortfall and in eight years cut it by 60 percent.

    The shortfall has doubled under Trump.

    As a percentage of the economy, however, it has risen from 3 percent in the final Obama year to a bit more than 4 percent now.

    Even Washington's most stalwart and consistent fiscal hawk, Maya MacGuineas, president of the bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, acknowledges the budget deficit isn't a top policy concern right now “as low interest rates buy us some time.”

    However, she cautions that the fiscal situation “is the worst it has been since just after World War II,” adding, “No one knows when the tipping point is or what it looks like, but those are questions we shouldn’t want to find the answers to.”
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The quality seems to have dropped significantly since I came here, I guess you get what you pay for.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Yes, that is the new tactic from all the trolls.
    They just assert lies over and over no matter how often they are exposed.
    I am Zippy and I approve of this post. But you don't have to.



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  3. #2
    Paul Ryan a deficit hawk?
    This moron voted for the iraq war,medicare part D,Bank bailouts & he voted everytime for bigger spending.
    His Budget that he once proposed didn't cut anything!

  4. #3
    Rand Paul has long been sounding the alarm and pushing the Penny Plan.

  5. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Warlord View Post
    Rand Paul has long been sounding the alarm and pushing the Penny Plan.
    He proposed no changes for Social Security- including not freezing cost of living increases.
    Defense spending would increase every year in his plan (rising from $657 billion to $740- billion in five years).
    "Foreign Affairs"- he has rising from $60 billion to $64 billion over five years.
    "General Science" to increase from $35 billion to $39 billion.
    "Natural Resources and Environment" to increase from $45 billion to $51 billion
    "Agriculture": $20 billion to $23 billion
    "Commerce and Housing": $15 billion to $18 billion
    "Transportation": $89 billion rising to $105 billion over five years

    Link: https://www.paul.senate.gov/dr-rand-...alanced-budget

    Could go on, but not seeing the budget getting much smaller. The "Penny Plan" was supposed to freeze spending at 2019 levels and then cut two percent a year for five years and then balance the budget.

    Is that reasonable? 2019 spending was $4.4 trillion. Revenues were $3.4 trillion for a $1 trillion deficit. Let's assume we include Social Security (which he said leave off) and cut two percent a year. Where would we be in spending after five years?

    2019 spending: $4.4 trillion.
    2020 spending: $4.3 trillion. Year one.
    2021 spending: $4.2 trillion. Year two.
    2023 spending: $4.1 trillion. Year three.
    2024 spending: $4.05 trillion. Year four.
    2025 spending: $3.98 trillion. Year five. (Rand claims it would be down to $3.1 trillion by that point but I can't see how)

    Spending is about $400 billion less than we started with. Nine percent less.

    Revenues? We started with $3.4 trillion so we need to raise $600 billion more in them to get rid of the $1 trillion deficit or 18% more in tax revenues.

    If he wants to balance it without touching Social Security, he (or anybody else), needs to cut $1 trillion from this over five years (and he calls for more, not less spending on defense):





    But at least he suggested something. Nobody else has.
    Last edited by Zippyjuan; 12-02-2019 at 03:37 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The quality seems to have dropped significantly since I came here, I guess you get what you pay for.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Yes, that is the new tactic from all the trolls.
    They just assert lies over and over no matter how often they are exposed.
    I am Zippy and I approve of this post. But you don't have to.

  6. #5
    I never had any hope that the deficits would go down.
    "Perhaps one of the most important accomplishments of my administration is minding my own business."

    Calvin Coolidge

  7. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Anti Globalist View Post
    I never had any hope that the deficits would go down.
    Trump said he would get rid of the debt in eight years. You did not believe him?

    https://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box...ebt-in-8-years

    Trump: I will eliminate U.S. debt in 8 years

    Donald Trump insists he would be able to wipe out the United States’s debt in eight years.

    The Republican presidential front-runner said in a wide-ranging interview with The Washington Post that he’d be able to get rid of the more than $19 trillion debt “over a period of eight years.”

    Eliminating that amount of debt in eight years is highly improbable, according to most economists, The Washington Post reported. It could require using $2 trillion a year from the annual $4 trillion budget to pay off holders of the debt.

    Trump insisted in the interview that “renegotiating all of our deals” would help pay down the debt by sparking economic growth.
    More at link.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The quality seems to have dropped significantly since I came here, I guess you get what you pay for.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Yes, that is the new tactic from all the trolls.
    They just assert lies over and over no matter how often they are exposed.
    I am Zippy and I approve of this post. But you don't have to.

  8. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Zippyjuan View Post
    Trump said he would get rid of the debt in eight years. You did not believe him?

    https://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box...ebt-in-8-years



    More at link.
    Obama increased debt more than all his predecessors combined, why didn't you complain then?

  9. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Stratovarious View Post
    Obama increased debt more than all his predecessors combined, why didn't you complain then?
    Trump will have more debt than Obama. He is the best at everything! (also it is Congress, not the president- who controls spending).

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The quality seems to have dropped significantly since I came here, I guess you get what you pay for.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Yes, that is the new tactic from all the trolls.
    They just assert lies over and over no matter how often they are exposed.
    I am Zippy and I approve of this post. But you don't have to.



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  11. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Zippyjuan View Post
    Trump will have more debt than Obama. He is the best at everything! (also it is Congress, not the president- who controls spending).

    lol, not without the presidential seal.


  12. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Zippyjuan View Post
    Trump will have more debt than Obama. He is the best at everything! (also it is Congress, not the president- who controls spending).

    Once again zippy , why did you not complain about Obama, and now its fkg Armageddon ...

  13. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Stratovarious View Post
    lol, not without the presidential seal.

    He can only sign or veto it. He can't do anything about the content of a spending bill.

    Presidential seal:

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The quality seems to have dropped significantly since I came here, I guess you get what you pay for.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Yes, that is the new tactic from all the trolls.
    They just assert lies over and over no matter how often they are exposed.
    I am Zippy and I approve of this post. But you don't have to.

  14. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Zippyjuan View Post
    He can only sign or veto it. He can't do anything about the content of a spending bill.

    That's right, so don't pretend Obama didn't approve ....

  15. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Stratovarious View Post
    That's right, so don't pretend Obama didn't approve ....
    If you want to go there, deficits were high from Bush spending fighting two wars and the recession. Deficits declined significantly by the time he left office. Now they are soaring again. FY 2009 budget was signed by Bush.

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The quality seems to have dropped significantly since I came here, I guess you get what you pay for.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Yes, that is the new tactic from all the trolls.
    They just assert lies over and over no matter how often they are exposed.
    I am Zippy and I approve of this post. But you don't have to.

  16. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Zippyjuan View Post
    If you want to go there, deficits were high from Bush spending fighting two wars and the recession. Deficits declined significantly by the time he left office. Now they are soaring again.

    Not really, I'm interested in why you didn't complain about Obama debt, for the 5th time......


  17. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Stratovarious View Post
    Not really, I'm interested in why you didn't complain about Obama debt, for the 5th time......

    Deficits were declining- a good thing. Trump said he would make the go a way and instead they are bigger than ever.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The quality seems to have dropped significantly since I came here, I guess you get what you pay for.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Yes, that is the new tactic from all the trolls.
    They just assert lies over and over no matter how often they are exposed.
    I am Zippy and I approve of this post. But you don't have to.

  18. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Zippyjuan View Post
    Deficits were declining- a good thing. Trump said he would make the go a way and instead they are bigger than ever.
    so.... for the 6th time zippy , why did you not complain about the biggest debt in the history of mankind under
    Obama, but now suddenly , it's a big problem?




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  20. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Zippyjuan View Post
    But at least he suggested something. Nobody else has.
    Rand Paui has suggested modest cuts a balanced budget withi 5 years. I trust Rand.

  21. #18
    FAO Zippy. Rand Paul talks about his Penny Plan on the Senate floor:


  22. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Warlord View Post
    FAO Zippy. Rand Paul talks about his Penny Plan on the Senate floor:

    Aside from my own calculation as to what a two percent cut of everything would mean, the other figures came from Rand Paul (the ones showing higher spending for almost everything). Link was provided. Here it is again:

    https://www.paul.senate.gov/dr-rand-...alanced-budget

    Scrolling down shows category by category spending. I looked at five years even though he listed more years (since he claimed it would balance in five years).

    But again, nobody else has even suggested anything so I do give him credit. His numbers just don't add up.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The quality seems to have dropped significantly since I came here, I guess you get what you pay for.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Yes, that is the new tactic from all the trolls.
    They just assert lies over and over no matter how often they are exposed.
    I am Zippy and I approve of this post. But you don't have to.

  23. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Zippyjuan View Post


    Business is not easy to run, he may have been speaking from that pov. What is the problem if he pays it back later.



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