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Thread: What have the Republicans brought to the United States during their rule?

  1. #21
    troaty mouth best song ever pjdude1219's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buffalo Roam View Post
    Never said it wasn't, what I said was no new attacks, there hasn't been a successful attack on America since 9/11.
    there also has been no need to. why commit the resources to try instill fear when our own government is doing it for them.

  2. #22
    Registered Senior Member Buffalo Roam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pjdude1219 View Post
    there also has been no need to. why commit the resources to try instill fear when our own government is doing it for them.
    Don't know about you but I don't live in fear, cut the umbilical cord to mama, 57 years ago. GRHS

  3. #23
    Tiassa,

    As one who disdains references to people like Hillary Clinton as a "liberal", you have my sympathies in this. But notions of liberal and conservative are somewhat transitional; they are constantly evolving in response to contemporary conditions. Would Jesus have gotten along with Muhammad have gotten along with Sir Isaac Newton have gotten along with Lord Byron?
    I think so. I would prefer to avoid dwindling off into a philosophical tangent, but I think the parameters of conservatism and liberalism are consistent throughout the ages. Sure, the specifics and details may differ, but the fundamental values and ideals are similar and enduring. From reading abundant scriptures and biographies, I can confidently say that both Jesus's and Muhammad's political standpoints would be identical, regardless of the six centuries separating their births. Liberalism is now what it was centuries ago: fervent support for progression, power to the state, and openness to change, even if it is rapid. Conservatism's history favors tradition, sensible spending, free market emphasis, and gradual change. I understand your point: the notions of liberalism and conservatism constantly evolve in response to contemporary conditions, but it seems as if both retain their core philosophies. Connecting this to our modern day, I'd say the American Republicans in office have shown liberal tendencies (there goes my neutrality!), and have completely ignored vintage conservatism (which, I might add, they claim to adhere to). I'm sorry, but I cannot picture a self-described conservative participating in so many off-shore wars/campaigns, overtly destroying the citizenry's privacy and liberties, and spending so much money. Isn't Bush the biggest spending president in all of American history (ousting the infamous LBJ)?

    Ron Paul is an excellent example of this ideological rollback. A hard money policy would throw the United States back to a myth that is perhaps antebellum, or maybe 1911 at the latest. And while this might sound appealing to people who dress themselves in "libertarian" rhetoric, it would more likely prove disastrous.
    Really? I think abandoning the "hard money" concept has destroyed much of America's willpower, and has put its economical control into the hands of a few men (many of whom are foreign). Favoring hard money gets people in deep trouble, Tiassa - even if they're supposedly on top of the food chain. Why do you think Richard Lawrence shot two bullets in an attempt to claim Old Hickory's life? He vetoed the charter to the Second Bank of the United States, and ordered public lands to be purchased with hard money, and hard money only. Hard money helped finance Lincoln's efforts in the Civil War, when the bankers of yesterday (who very much resemble the bankers of today) demanded up to 36 percent interest on the loans Honest Abe needed. You can spin it any way you like, but the truth remains unchanged: the greenback killed Lincoln, and the silverback killed Kennedy. If these attempts to reform America's defunct, hopeless monetary policies have failed due to cold-blooded assassinations, you have to wonder why this practice is so adamantly frowned upon. I've even read, albeit only Internet rumors, that Ron Paul was an assassination target because he wanted to deconstruct the Federal Reserve System. And why not? The F.R.S.'s private owners have robbed Americans out of billions of hard-earned dollars. If one old man posed a threat to your elaborate money-making scheme, wouldn't you try to silence him?

    As James Garfield, a former American president who died of an assassin, once said: "Whosoever controls the volume of money in any country is absolute master of all industry and commerce… And when you realize that the entire system is very easily controlled, one way or another, by a few powerful men at the top, you will not have to be told how periods of inflation and depression originate."

    I don't want to go too far off topic, so I'll end with this: the Federal Reserve System has to go. It's robbing Americans of their money, and it's a private institution, which is a recipe for disaster. Who controls the shareholdings of the Federal Reserve? Here's a significant list:

    1. Rothchild banks of London and Berlin.

    2. Lazard Brothers Banks of Paris.

    3. Israel Moses Seif Banks of Italy.

    4. Warburg Bank of Hamburg and Amsterdam.

    5. Lehman Brothers Bank of New York.

    6. Kuhn, Loeb bank of New York.

    7. Chase Manhattan Bank of New York, which controls all of the other 11 Federal Rwerve Banks.

    8. Goldman, Sachs Bank of New York.

    That doesn't look right, no matter which way you spin it. Ultimately, we should never forget the fact that millions of Americans, both past and present, have suffered from the inflation of paper money, and the articifial depressions which it creates. Ron Paul, for better or for worse, is the only candidate addressing this issue. The rest are too busy swimming in lobbyist money.

    Add to that Paul's disdain for the Department of Education. While there are certainly arguments of merit about the scale of the federal outlook on education, we cannot escape consideration of what happens if we throw out any sense of national standards whatsoever. A friend of mine went to a Christian school where one could spell through as thru and get it correct on the test because the administration figured that was the way of the world, and everyone would be using the simpler spelling in twenty years. The state legislature of ... I think it was Louisiana once proposed that, for academic purposes, π should equal 3.0, in order that students could get better test scores. Kansas wanted God to be taught as a scientific principle, thus undermining the scientific method. In the end, allowing such ridiculous standards in a patchwork arrangement will destabilize American society. Students in cosmopolitan centers would, largely, fare better in college acceptance and placement than students from rural or religious schools. This would sharpen economic and ideological gaps between Americans, thus reducing sociopolitical cooperation. American performance would decline. The damage would be insidious, and recovery would take generations.
    So how has government's involvement benefited the educational system as of recent? It hasn't, and as history will show us, it can't. You seem to be proposing a government administered, nationwide educational program - a one size fits all, so to speak. I disagree with that. It is difficult to handle such an enormous educational process with delicacy; allowing for appropriate variation among schools will allow for the greatest results. If you ask me, nothing is more terrifying than a nationwide educational system lead by an erratic government, teaching all kids, in every corner of America, the exact same thing, in the exact same way. I suppose it's good for raising parrots, if you're looking for an upside.

    And, frankly, it seems a ridiculous proposal to sacrifice entire generations just so we can, today, take satisfaction in saying, "At leas' there ain't no guv'mint tellin' us what a circle is."

    A triumph of freedom today. Wud u lik fryz wi' dat?
    It's all about that harmonious balance, isn't it?

    In overturning Roe v. Wade, just how far back would Paul like to set the Constitution? The nineteenth century?
    Ideally, as far back as it can go. His constitutionalism is highly admirable, whether or not you admire him as a candidate. He's honest, scandal-free, and knows that America functions best when it adheres to its constitution. Which brings me to the original topic: the Republicans in power today have made a complete mockery out of the constitution. Wasn't there something within that soggy old parchment which demanded Congress's approval before carrying out acts of war? I could have sworn I saw that somewhere ...

    If the conservative leadership is no longer made up of "true" conservatives, what does this mean? Two options come to mind, but I won't limit it to that. Either ...

    • ... the definition of a true conservative has evolved, or ...

    • ... true conservatives are stuck somewhere back in the nineteenth century.
    Hmm ... it could be a combination of both. Consider this: the true conservatives have drastically reduced in numbers, for reasons I would rather not explain. Does that seem plausible?

    Two personal questions, Tiassa, if you don't mind:

    1) Do you consider yourself a conservative, liberal, a mix, or something else? It's always important to know in a discussion like this. I'm thinking liberal, but who knows what you say in your textbook posts?

    2) Pertaining to our "hard money" conversation, have you ever read G. Edward Griffin's The Creature From Jekyll Island? Although it's a 600-page behemoth, it truly is an interesting page turner. I'm sure somebody as well-read as yourself has at least come across the title once or twice.


    Kadark
    Last edited by Kadark; 08-26-08 at 11:10 PM.

  4. #24
    troaty mouth best song ever pjdude1219's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buffalo Roam View Post
    Don't know about you but I don't live in fear, cut the umbilical cord to mama, 57 years ago. GRHS
    honestly you must try to be this stupid. I refuse to be afraid because that what the bushies like you want of me to do. but the object of terrorism is to instill fear which the bush admin is doing with their rhetoric and such which is why there was no attack. I don't get how being born has anything to do with someone trying to instill fear in the american people.

  5. #25
    Let us not launch the boat ... Tiassa's Avatar
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    Cool Notes, theories, and such

    Quote Originally Posted by Kadark

    I think so .... From reading abundant scriptures and biographies, I can confidently say that both Jesus's and Muhammad's political standpoints would be identical, regardless of the six centuries separating their births.
    Muhammad would have embraced Jesus; I'm not so sure about reciprocation, though. Jesus had a thing about false prophets, and we could probably argue for a century about how he would have regarded Muhammad without achieving a firm conclusion.

    But Newton and Byron? Newton was a bitterly obsessive, buggering alchemist. Byron was a serial adulterer who abandoned his daughter. Although I admit it would be absolutely fascinating to listen to Jesus and Byron get drunk and argue about Napoleon.

    Liberalism is now what it was centuries ago: fervent support for progression, power to the state, and openness to change, even if it is rapid. Conservatism's history favors tradition, sensible spending, free market emphasis, and gradual change. I understand your point: the notions of liberalism and conservatism constantly evolve in response to contemporary conditions, but it seems as if both retain their core philosophies.
    It is my opinion that liberalism changes more slowly. Liberal aspirations have yet to be realized; conservative ambitions look back to former conditions. And while their core philosophies remain fairly stable, the interpretations and manifestations of those perspectives evolve differently. Liberal notions of equality and justice, being abstract, can find much in common with their former expressions. You can find in Wollstonecroft, Beethoven, Byron, Shelly, and the aforementioned Luddites, at least, ideas that still have great sympathy in the twenty-first century. Their contemporary conservatives are—at least in the United States—largely extinct. To the other, though, the Golden Ages to which conservatives aspire change at the very least with each generation. Very few "true conservatives" would admit to yearning for black slavery. Indeed, I doubt such sympathizers exist in any significant numbers.

    Connecting this to our modern day, I'd say the American Republicans in office have shown liberal tendencies (there goes my neutrality!), and have completely ignored vintage conservatism (which, I might add, they claim to adhere to).
    Part of this is the nature of politics. Americans are so hung up on the idea of selling out that "compromise" is very nearly a dirty word. I voted for Clinton twice, yet I will still make the joke that he was the best Republican president ever.

    Well, until Dubya, but that's another issue that involves a redefinition of the standard.

    I'm sorry, but I cannot picture a self-described conservative participating in so many off-shore wars/campaigns, overtly destroying the citizenry's privacy and liberties, and spending so much money. Isn't Bush the biggest spending president in all of American history (ousting the infamous LBJ)?
    Sex and drugs? Conservatives have been as intrusive as liberals, and for reasons I consider more sinister. While a liberal might foolishly believe that a war on drugs will benefit society in general, conservatives are motivated by the greed of commerce. It is no coincidence that marijuana became effectively illegal (The Marihuana Tax Act of 1937) a year after DuPont introduced nylon. (Hemp rope would, with Congressional help, be supplanted by nylon rope.) Indeed, whenever hemp and medical marijuana come up on state ballots, you'll find timber and textile money in the opposition.

    The strange union of sociomoral and economic conservatives is a tremendous example of the effects of compromise in its more profane context. How is it that American Christians came to so vigorously oppose a philosophy (Communism) that took up a motto from the Acts of the Apostles? Indeed, our money reads, "In God We Trust," as a direct response to the perceived godlessness of Soviet Communism.

    And, frankly, the moral intrusions into people's bedrooms are part of the undoing of the alleged libertarian streak among conservatives. While they vociferously oppose commercial regulation as invasive, conservatives have long and enthusiastically sought regulation of consenting sexual behavior.

    In consideration of privacy and liberties, I would go so far as to suggest that we ought not be surprised. The judicial foundations supporting legislated patriotism, domestic espionage, and the like can be found in the Drug War. Over and over again, courts bent over backwards to accommodate the Drug Warriors. While judges would often defy sentencing regulations in other cases, they often pled, "My hands are tied," before sentencing convicted drug possessors to disproportionate prison terms. An example would be Apprendi v. New Jersey, in which a federal court struck down certain hate-crime legislation. While many of us find the idea of victimizing someone for mere ethnicity repugnant, the greatest public concern pertained to the Drug War, because the basis for the Apprendi decision also pertained to drug sentencing. Sure, it may be wrong to sentence someone for a crime a jury did not convict them of, but if it's drugs ....

    The Fourth Amendment suffered greatly during the Drug War, and continues to endure a disgraceful siege during the so-called War on Terror.

    Conservatives also are fans of the pejorative "tax and spend", yet what they mean is the idea of spending money on the people at large. When it comes to military spending, they have no real compunctions about breaking the treasury. After all, they're giving public money to their friends instead of the common rabble. Bush may be the biggest spender in presidential history, but that in and of itself doesn't concern conservatives so much as the way he did it. He favored the rich with tax policies, which conservatives like, but didn't make up the shortfall by taking enough from the working classes, which upset them. But this was a matter of political compromise; had he hit the working classes in order to clear the red ink, he would not have won in 2004.

    I think abandoning the "hard money" concept has destroyed much of America's willpower, and has put its economical control into the hands of a few men (many of whom are foreign).
    The willpower issue is an interesting theory; don't let me stop you from expounding on it. And, certainly, an oligarchic economy is problematic. But a wholesale reconstruction of our monetary system that does not account for the $48 trillion in American debt will bring disaster. While there might be some romantic appeal about the notion of hard money, practical details present certain challenges.

    Favoring hard money gets people in deep trouble, Tiassa - even if they're supposedly on top of the food chain. Why do you think Richard Lawrence shot two bullets in an attempt to claim Old Hickory's life? He vetoed the charter to the Second Bank of the United States, and ordered public lands to be purchased with hard money, and hard money only. Hard money helped finance Lincoln's efforts in the Civil War, when the bankers of yesterday (who very much resemble the bankers of today) demanded up to 36 percent interest on the loans Honest Abe needed. You can spin it any way you like, but the truth remains unchanged: the greenback killed Lincoln, and the silverback killed Kennedy. If these attempts to reform America's defunct, hopeless monetary policies have failed due to cold-blooded assassinations, you have to wonder why this practice is so adamantly frowned upon.
    Richard Lawrence was so ill that he was acquitted according to an insanity defense. The jury deliberated for all of five minutes before returning their verdict. Among his apparent claims were that he was an heir to the British throne, that Jackson had thwarted his attempt to claim the Crown, and that Jackson had murdered his father.

    And while prior years might have suppressed the hard money angle of the Lincoln assassination, I confess that I'm struck by the relative dearth of discussion about this theory in the internet age. Although I did find a discussion of a Freemason conspiracy that has to do with the British Crown.

    As to Kennedy, perhaps you can help pin down his apparent reversal in policy. From a 1960 speech in Terre Haute, Indiana:

    I want to emphasize that what we do here, and the kind of society we build here, affects our position around the world. The strength of the United States depends on the strength of Indiana, Pittsburgh, Detroit, California. If this country is moving forward, if we are producing to our maximum, there is no country in the world that can catch us. The United States produced about one-third of the rate of economic growth last year as the Soviet Union, one-half that of Germany. If we were using our steel mills to the fullest, if we had an agricultural program that maintained farmers' income, if small business in this country was prosperous, if the monetary and fiscal policies of this administration did not rest on a high interest, hard money policy, then the economy of this country would move and no one could catch the United States. But if we drift, if we use our people and our resources at slow speed, then at a time when the world is in turmoil and in revolution, people to the South of us, people in Africa, people in Asia are going to determine that the way of the future belongs to the Communists.

    (Senator John F. Kennedy)
    Or perhaps I read you wrongly. If I have, help me understand why you included Kennedy in that list, please.

    I've even read, albeit only Internet rumors, that Ron Paul was an assassination target because he wanted to deconstruct the Federal Reserve System. And why not? The F.R.S.'s private owners have robbed Americans out of billions of hard-earned dollars. If one old man posed a threat to your elaborate money-making scheme, wouldn't you try to silence him?
    That someone may have thought of shooting Ron Paul for whatever reason would not surprise me anymore than the idea that alleged meth-heads wanted to kill Barack Obama for being black.

    As James Garfield, a former American president who died of an assassin, once said: "Whosoever controls the volume of money in any country is absolute master of all industry and commerce… And when you realize that the entire system is very easily controlled, one way or another, by a few powerful men at the top, you will not have to be told how periods of inflation and depression originate."
    And well should Garfield know.

    I don't want to go too far off topic, so I'll end with this: the Federal Reserve System has to go. It's robbing Americans of their money, and it's a private institution, which is a recipe for disaster. Who controls the shareholdings of the Federal Reserve?
    I will note that privatization is a conservative plank. But while there is no question that the Federal Reserve is a mess, the question of its theory—that is, what it is supposed to do—is now so integral to American function that a complete vacuum would cause tremendous harm. The reform of the system is one thing, but the forfeiture of its purpose would strike deep at the American economic heart. While it might make for a popular cause in some quarters, the notion such as it is right now is dangerously myopic.

    Here's a significant list:

    1. Rothchild banks of London and Berlin.

    2. Lazard Brothers Banks of Paris.

    3. Israel Moses Seif Banks of Italy.

    4. Warburg Bank of Hamburg and Amsterdam.

    5. Lehman Brothers Bank of New York.

    6. Kuhn, Loeb bank of New York.

    7. Chase Manhattan Bank of New York, which controls all of the other 11 Federal Rwerve Banks.

    8. Goldman, Sachs Bank of New York.

    That doesn't look right, no matter which way you spin it. Ultimately, we should never forget the fact that millions of Americans, both past and present, have suffered from the inflation of paper money, and the articifial depressions which it creates. Ron Paul, for better or for worse, is the only candidate addressing this issue. The rest are too busy swimming in lobbyist money.
    While Paul might be attempting to address the issue, I have yet to see anything more than superficial appeals to libertarian demagoguery.

    So how has government's involvement benefited the educational system as of recent? It hasn't, and as history will show us, it can't.
    This is not necessarily a question of involvement itself, but the manner of involvement. Shortchanging and politically manipulating the federal educational outlook corrupts it.

    You seem to be proposing a government administered, nationwide educational program - a one size fits all, so to speak. I disagree with that.
    ∏ does not equal 3.0. "Intelligent design" is not a science. In recent years, our more conservative elements have done the greatest damage to the Department of Education. Former Secretary Rod Paige called teachers terrorists, which, while not entirely relevant here, doesn't help. But Secretary Spellings took some heat a couple years ago for attempting to inject conservative moralism into literacy programs. This is reflective of an old joke:

    A Democrat will tell you he can make you richer, smarter, more handsome, and get the chickweed out of your lawn. A Republican will tell you what's wrong with government, get elected, and then prove it.

    So much of what American conservatives fear is of their own doing and ambition that we might wonder how this comes to be. The GOP lockstep behind the President, for instance; and there was the disgraceful Schiavo fiasco, with a doctor pretending a diagnosis based on a videotape. And both the greed and sexual excess of American culture so lamented by social conservatives is the produce of economic conservatives. The FISA debate suggests the American political discourse has moved to the right; what was once a conservative distrust of government is now reserved for the leftist fringe. And as the Haymarket Martyrs were told, they were not sentenced to death for murder, but because they were Anarchists. They were framed in order to relieve the pressure leftists were putting on corporate greed.

    But back to education. The purpose of educational standards is one of equal opportunity. Consider two students with high school diplomas. One can spell, the other can't. The one can work the scientific method; the other refuses, on customary principle, the idea of a testable hypothesis. Which one will get into the better college? Which one will perform better? Which will get a better job? Whatever the federal government's role in education might be, it certainly is not to encourage such disparate results.

    Harmonious balance? There is something to that. But for all the contentious debate about equal opportunity, students should have reasonable access to proper information and method. Otherwise, they find themselves at a gross disadvantage.

    Ideally, as far back as it can go.
    That's almost an arbitrary answer. Should we undo the Fourteenth Amendment? History demonstrates the results of its absence. And, indeed, history demonstrates the determination of many people to enforce inequality despite it. (Why did women's suffrage require a separate amendment?)

    His constitutionalism is highly admirable, whether or not you admire him as a candidate.
    It would be interesting to see how he addresses the constitutional issues of Roe v. Wade.

    He's honest, scandal-free ...
    Well, maybe in terms of banging interns, or whatever. But he had no compunctions about lending his name and credibility to racists until it became politically problematic.

    ... and knows that America functions best when it adheres to its constitution.
    Constitutional adherence is not, to borrow a phrase, "one size fits all". Abortion, gender discrimination, free speech, the right to bear arms, unreasonable search and seizure, executive power, and even the concept of a veto are subjects of debate. The list goes on.

    Which brings me to the original topic: the Republicans in power today have made a complete mockery out of the constitution.
    They usually do. Although this time, I confess the nature of their mockery is a bit different from what we're accustomed to.

    Wasn't there something within that soggy old parchment which demanded Congress's approval before carrying out acts of war? I could have sworn I saw that somewhere ...
    Something about the general and the particular goes here. And also something about Democrats understanding what they were voting for.

    Hmm ... it could be a combination of both. Consider this: the true conservatives have drastically reduced in numbers, for reasons I would rather not explain. Does that seem plausible?
    It seems plausible, and the explanation could prove fascinating.

    Two personal questions, Tiassa, if you don't mind:

    1) Do you consider yourself a conservative, liberal, a mix, or something else? It's always important to know in a discussion like this. I'm thinking liberal, but who knows what you say in your textbook posts?

    2) Pertaining to our "hard money" conversation, have you ever read G. Edward Griffin's The Creature From Jekyll Island? Although it's a 600-page behemoth, it truly is an interesting page turner. I'm sure somebody as well-read as yourself has at least come across the title once or twice.
    I don't mind at all.

    (1) I'm liberal to the point of being leftist, although I tend to disagree with many of my fellows. I have both Marxist and Anarchist sympathies, and find myself well to the left of the Democratic Party. In voting for Obama, for instance, I will be making a substantial concession to the right wing. It's important enough this year. If Gore hadn't won my state in 2000, I would have felt very badly about voting third-party.

    (2) Actually, I seem to have missed Griffin's book. The reviews I just read on Amazon, suggest an interesting book. The book exists in my local library system; but is currently on hold. I'll add myself to the list and give it a look. Thanks.
    _____________________

    Notes:

    Kennedy, Sen. John F. "Remarks of Senator John F. Kennedy, Courthouse, Terre Haute, IN". October 5, 1960. The American Presidency Project at University of California Santa Barbara. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=60428

    See Also:

    Kane, Paul. "Authorities: No Credible Threat Posed To Obama". Washington Post. August 27, 2008; page A23. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...082603791.html

    Rieckhoff, Paul. "Bush's Incredible Invisible Veto: Veterans Caught in the Middle Again". The Huffington Post. January 11, 2008. Bush's Incredible Invisible Veto: Veterans Caught in the Middle Again

  6. #26
    Valued Senior Member Pandaemoni's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buffalo Roam View Post
    Now as for the supposed budget surplus, it was never there, if you read the fine print, those were projection for what are called the out years, for budgets that hadn't been written yet, not the current budget, and the current budgets hadn't paid of the current debt in the first place.

    So the debt was just handed off, to the next year, or the next administration.

    Which means the money wasn't there.

    Main Entry: out–year
    Pronunciation: \ˈau̇t-ˌyir\
    Function: noun
    Date: 1981
    : the year beyond a current fiscal year —usually used in plural except when attrib.
    That's not true. The government ran actual, cash in hand, surpluses in 1998-2001 (2001 being the last year a Clinton budget was in place).

    See here: http://www.nber.org/palmdata/indicators/federal.html

    Or, for confirmation from the treasury, the graph at the top of page 6, here: http://www.ustreas.gov/offices/domes...-q3-charts.pdf

    Note that these were the actual numbers, not projections. You can see the budgeted numbers further down in the NBER post.

    Interesting to note that, despite the surplus, there was only one year in which the total government debt actually fell (from $5.776 trillion on 12/31/99 to $5.662 trillion on 12/31/00) , because intragovernment borrowing rose during most of those years (so one department of the federal government borrowed money from another). The "external" debt (owed to private citizens and state and foreign governments) declined during that period:

    9/30/97 external debt of ~ $3.790 trillion
    9/30/98 ~ $3.734 trillion
    9/30/99 ~ $3.636 trillion
    9/29/00 ~ $3.405 trillion
    9/28/01 ~ $3.339 trillion

    to a reported low of:

    10/31/01 ~ $3.333 trillion

    All the actual debt numbers (including the quoted external debt numbers) can be found here: http://www.treasurydirect.gov/NP/BPD...application=np by looking at 12/31/1996 to 12/31/2007.

  7. #27
    Most excellent Tiassa and Pandaemoni. I have a weird kind of facination in seeing how Buffalo tries to defend Republicans. It is truely an amazing thing to watch.

  8. #28
    Registered Senior Member Buffalo Roam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pandaemoni View Post
    That's not true. The government ran actual, cash in hand, surpluses in 1998-2001 (2001 being the last year a Clinton budget was in place).

    See here: http://www.nber.org/palmdata/indicators/federal.html

    Or, for confirmation from the treasury, the graph at the top of page 6, here: http://www.ustreas.gov/offices/domes...-q3-charts.pdf

    Note that these were the actual numbers, not projections. You can see the budgeted numbers further down in the NBER post.

    Interesting to note that, despite the surplus, there was only one year in which the total government debt actually fell (from $5.776 trillion on 12/31/99 to $5.662 trillion on 12/31/00) , because intragovernment borrowing rose during most of those years (so one department of the federal government borrowed money from another). The "external" debt (owed to private citizens and state and foreign governments) declined during that period:

    9/30/97 external debt of ~ $3.790 trillion
    9/30/98 ~ $3.734 trillion
    9/30/99 ~ $3.636 trillion
    9/29/00 ~ $3.405 trillion
    9/28/01 ~ $3.339 trillion

    to a reported low of:

    10/31/01 ~ $3.333 trillion

    All the actual debt numbers (including the quoted external debt numbers) can be found here: http://www.treasurydirect.gov/NP/BPD...application=np by looking at 12/31/1996 to 12/31/2007.
    total government debt actually fell (from $5.776 trillion on 12/31/99 to $5.662 trillion on 12/31/00) , because intragovernment borrowing rose during most of those years (so one department of the federal government borrowed money from another).
    Which still hadn't payed off the National Debt to that point, which means you don't have a surplus.

    Robbing Peter to pay Paul, taking the money from one pocket and placing it into another, creative accounting.

    It doesn't matter which pocket it is in, there wasn't any more money available, there was no reduction of debt, all smoke and mirrors.

    We were still in debt, and as I said those were projection for future Budgets, the money did not exist.

    ____________________National Debt, Total 1999_______________________

    ____________________________Current $_________YoY____During Presid.
    12/31/2000 CLINTON.......$ 5,662,216,013,697.........-2%...........36%

    ____Avg. Annual_______
    .........4.4%..............

    ________________Gross Domestic Product 1999________________

    ______________Current $ _______________Debt as % of
    ...................$9,817,000,000,000............. ........57.7%

  9. #29
    Bottom line Buffalo, no matter how you try to cut the pie and redefine measures, Democrats have a better track record of fiscal responsiblitly than the so called fiscal conservatives, the Republicans..especially in the last few decades.

  10. #30
    Registered Senior Member Buffalo Roam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joepistole View Post
    Bottom line Buffalo, no matter how you try to cut the pie and redefine measures, Democrats have a better track record of fiscal responsiblitly than the so called fiscal conservatives, the Republicans..especially in the last few decades.
    Really? and just when did they stop adding to the debt? when was the last budget passed that reduced the spending? not just the increase in spending.

    And with the platform being advanced by the Democrats, what do you think is going to happen if they get in to office?

    They are the ones who hold the purse strings in the House today, have they stopped the spending? No.

  11. #31
    Be kind to yourself always. cosmictraveler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joepistole View Post
    What have the Republicans and their cheerleaders (Hannity, Limbaugh, Fox News, etc) brought to us during their reign? A doubling of the national debt, moving from a budget surplus to a half trillion dollar annual deficit. What else have the Limbaughs, and the Hannities brought us? And since they were so generous in brining us these things, why should we continue listening to them?
    But it is the Democrats that control Congress! So if anyone is to blame it is the Democrats for not doing what they said they would do if they were in charge of Congress, or have they forgotten their promise of ending the war and getting the economy back on track?

  12. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by cosmictraveler View Post
    But it is the Democrats that control Congress! So if anyone is to blame it is the Democrats for not doing what they said they would do if they were in charge of Congress, or have they forgotten their promise of ending the war and getting the economy back on track?
    Not true Cosmic. The Democrats control the House. And the house has acted to control spending. One big example of the Dems in the house trying to reduce unnecesary spending was the Medicare Prescription Drug Reform Billof 2007 that was introduced in the House to allow the government to negotiate drug prices under the Medicare Prescription Drug Bill of 2003, passed by a Republican Congress and signed into law by a Republican president. It was passed by the House with a party line vote...Dems for and Republicans against. And it died in the Senate. The Democrats do not control the Senate. If it had passed it would have saved billions of tax payer dollars.

    The political break down in the Senate is as follows:

    50 Republicans (49 plus the Vice President)
    49 Democrats
    2 Independents

    Total Votes in the Senate = 101

    Total Democrats = 49, not a majority...unless you are using Hillary math.

  13. #33
    Registered Senior Member Buffalo Roam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joepistole View Post
    Not true Cosmic. The Democrats control the House. And the house has acted to control spending. One big example of the Dems in the house trying to reduce unnecesary spending was the Medicare Prescription Drug Reform Billof 2007 that was introduced in the House to allow the government to negotiate drug prices under the Medicare Prescription Drug Bill of 2003, passed by a Republican Congress and signed into law by a Republican president. It was passed by the House with a party line vote...Dems for and Republicans against. And it died in the Senate. The Democrats do not control the Senate. If it had passed it would have saved billions of tax payer dollars.

    The political break down in the Senate is as follows:

    50 Republicans (49 plus the Vice President)
    49 Democrats
    2 Independents

    Total Votes in the Senate = 101

    Total Democrats = 49, not a majority...unless you are using Hillary math.
    Hay Joe, you are using Hillary math, there are only 100 senators, 2 per state, X 50 states is 100 senators.

    In the 2006 election, two new female Senators (Claire McCaskill and Amy Klobuchar) were elected to seats previously held by men. This brought the total number of female senators to an all-time high of 16.

    The party balance for the Senate now stands at 51-49 in favor of the Democrats (including independent Bernie Sanders and Independent Democrat Joe Lieberman, who caucus with the Democrats).

  14. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by Kadark View Post




    I don't want to go too far off topic, so I'll end with this: the Federal Reserve System has to go. It's robbing Americans of their money, and it's a private institution, which is a recipe for disaster. Who controls the shareholdings of the Federal Reserve? Here's a significant list:

    1. Rothchild banks of London and Berlin.

    2. Lazard Brothers Banks of Paris.

    3. Israel Moses Seif Banks of Italy.

    4. Warburg Bank of Hamburg and Amsterdam.

    5. Lehman Brothers Bank of New York.

    6. Kuhn, Loeb bank of New York.

    7. Chase Manhattan Bank of New York, which controls all of the other 11 Federal Rwerve Banks.

    8. Goldman, Sachs Bank of New York.
    Your idea about who controls the Fed is nonsense. It does not matter how many times this conspiracy theory is repeated on the internet; this conspiracy theory is pathetic and easily disproved. I am not anti conspiracy theory in general and I am not pro-Israel.

    The idea that the money supply should be controlled by an institution that does not serve some politicians short term interests makes sense.

    The Fed probably could and should be improved upon.

  15. #35
    Registered Senior Member Cazzo's Avatar
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    1,031
    Quote Originally Posted by joepistole View Post
    Bottom line Buffalo, no matter how you try to cut the pie and redefine measures, Democrats have a better track record of fiscal responsiblitly than the so called fiscal conservatives, the Republicans..especially in the last few decades.
    Yes, republicans HAVE done deficit spending, which I find annoying. BUT, it has been done with the help of democrats in congress. How many bills have democrats tacked on major pork for projects (further increasing the debt), how many bills has GWB and other rep. presidents proposed where the dems in congress boosted that same bill (further increasing the debt).
    There's 2 sides to the national debt coin........

  16. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by Buffalo Roam View Post
    Hay Joe, you are using Hillary math, there are only 100 senators, 2 per state, X 50 states is 100 senators.

    In the 2006 election, two new female Senators (Claire McCaskill and Amy Klobuchar) were elected to seats previously held by men. This brought the total number of female senators to an all-time high of 16.

    The party balance for the Senate now stands at 51-49 in favor of the Democrats (including independent Bernie Sanders and Independent Democrat Joe Lieberman, who caucus with the Democrats).
    Buffalo re-read what I posted. There are 101 votes in the Senate. You forgot the Vice President has a vote in the Senate...though he does not often use it. It does not change the fact that he has the vote.

  17. #37
    Mourning in America madanthonywayne's Avatar
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    The problem with the Republicans in the later years of their control of congress is simply that they became seduced by the power of the office. They forgot the principles they were elected to uphold and became as bad as the Democrats.

    Power corrupts. That's why government power must be limited as much as possible.

  18. #38
    Valued Senior Member Pandaemoni's Avatar
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    3,630
    Quote Originally Posted by Buffalo Roam View Post
    Which still hadn't payed off the National Debt to that point, which means you don't have a surplus.

    Robbing Peter to pay Paul, taking the money from one pocket and placing it into another, creative accounting.

    It doesn't matter which pocket it is in, there wasn't any more money available, there was no reduction of debt, all smoke and mirrors.

    We were still in debt, and as I said those were projection for future Budgets, the money did not exist.

    ____________________National Debt, Total 1999_______________________

    ____________________________Current $_________YoY____During Presid.
    12/31/2000 CLINTON.......$ 5,662,216,013,697.........-2%...........36%

    ____Avg. Annual_______
    .........4.4%..............

    ________________Gross Domestic Product 1999________________

    ______________Current $ _______________Debt as % of
    ...................$9,817,000,000,000............. ........57.7%

    It's a complicated subject, but I think you absorbed some bad information somewhere, and should reconsider the "it's projected" argument in light of the actual data for the latter half of Clinton's Administration. The actual numbers are there, in the NBER link. Perhaps you could find a different set of number refuting them, though NBER and the Bush administration's Treasury Department agree on the numbers. Otherwise, though, the data is there, and should be looked at rationally, setting personal animosities (or affections) for Clinton aside.

    We were still in debt, that's true, but:

    (a) Definition of a Surplus and Government Accounting That the national debt declines is not the accepted definition of a surplus...having greater cash revenues than cash outlays is the definition of the surplus in this context. The private sector analogy is "net income" (or, equivalently, "net operating cash" since the government is in essence not accounting on an "accrual" basis) and the result is the same: if a company takes in more in revenues than it spends, it has net income for the year. If the company's debts (but not current payables) increase at the same time, the company still has the same net income. "Debt" is something that is recorded on a balance sheet, and only affects income to the extent it is payable in the current period. The accounting at the federal level gets more complex than normal, though, because the calculation of "debt" counts money the government owes itself. If a division of a corporation "borrowed" money from another division of the same corporation, no accountant would include that on the balance sheet or the income statement (save perhaps in a footnote).

    You are right that the government's making "loans" to itself is economically no different than you taking $20 out of your right hand pocket, putting it in your left hand pocket and saying that you now "owe" $20 to yourself. Whether you count that as "real debt" or not, it is still true that from 1998 to 2001 the government took in more cash than it spent. If the government did that $20 trick, and were creating a "government balance sheet" that recognized those loans, that balance sheet should show a debt of $20 (a liability) *and* an offsetting cash receivable of $20 (an asset). As it actually accounts for it, though, it records the debt and not the receivable created.

    (There is a good reason to account for the transfers in a noticeable way, which is why they started treating it as debt, but the reason is not related to current budgets...the reason is because the internal debt is largely made up of "borrowings" from social security, and as that is an entitlement, there is a risk that some day soon the SSA will pay out more money in benefits than it takes in from taxes (though that hasn't happened yet). The internal debt, while not true debt from an economic perspective, is a measure of how unhealthy the entitlement programs are.)

    [Notice that the President's tables linked to in (c) below do the same thing I was: it takes the total debt, subtracts out the federal government's "internal" debt and then focuses on the debt held by the "Public" (though that includes State and foreign governments). If you discount the intra-governmental debts, the external debt declined from 1997-2001 (as the President's tables show)...so even if you define a surplus as a decline in the nominal amount of the external debt, which seems like it should be the defintion you'd be espousing, that's four years of surpluses. It's only when you add in the "creative accounting" debts that the government owes itself, that those surpluses vanish.]

    (b) Projections? Those are not projected numbers. The numbers listed in the NBER site are the actual numbers, measured in retrospect. NBER also lists the projected, budgeted, numbers separately, later in the same link. Similarly the Treasury Department's graph was not based on projections. The graph was produced in 2005, there was no need to use projections because the real numbers for 1996-2001 were known. (There was also no need for the Treasury in 2005 to do Clinton any favors in choosing favorable "projections" over what you clearly believe were actually deficits.)

    You are misremembering the (perfectly correct) complaint that was made about Clinton's proposals in the mid-1990s, that the surpluses were projected only...but history showed that the projections were conservative...the surpluses were slightly higher that the projected figures from his budget (see the NBER "budgeted" numbers). At the time his budget cutting measures were being sold, he was using projections to show how much the surpluses could be, and those projections made the assumption of future Congressional budgetary compliance. The complaint was "what if Congress fails to comply in the future?" It was a fair point because Congress was not obligated to comply, and intervening House elections might have changed its composition. That said, in actuality Congress did largely comply.

    (c) Increased Nominal Debt vs. Decreased Debt/GDP. I do agree that the national debt was higher after Clinton than before he took office, for what it's worth. There's no question that the only year in which revenues came in at a pace sufficient to pay down the total debt was 2000. The other years the surplus was allocated to the external debt (and as noted, did pay those amounts down), but no one can claim that the national debt as a whole declined during Clinton's Presidency.

    Most economists would say that the nominal amount of the debt doesn't matter, but that it's the Debt/GDP ratio that matters. You note that the debt was 57.7% of GDP which sounds about right for 2001 (the President's 2008 Budget puts it at 57.4% for that year, but close enough). It was as high as 67.3% (in 1996)[/url] so there was a decline. So while the total debt increased on his watch the Debt/GDP Ratio of the U.S. went down on the whole from 1993 (when it was at 66.2%) to 2001 (57.4%, according to the President's table), which is a good thing.

    (d) Whose Surpluses Were They. I was merely pointing out that you are wrong to say there were no surpluses, as there were. They were not hypothetical surpluses to come "in the future" that never actually came. They came in 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2001.

    The better argument, for your side, is that Clinton had nothing to do with it. First, it was the post-1994 Republican Congress that passed these budgets, so they should get some credit. Second, while spending didn't skyrocket under Clinton, it did rise faster than inflation in most years, so he was spending more money, in real terms, than his predecessors. How did the surpluses arise then? The economy boomed for 7 years, and that boom meant more transactions and more tax revenues. Receipts increased at a rate faster than spending not because Clinton was some economic genius, but because the economy was buzzing along nicely. Did Clinton cause that? While Clintonites would say 'yes' I would say 'no.' Presidents can play a role for good in the economy following major disasters or hardships, but generally it's much easier to harm economic growth than to cause it. Clinton did well by generally getting out of the economy's way, but that's about it.
    Last edited by Pandaemoni; 08-27-08 at 01:26 PM.

  19. #39
    Time for some light but (sort of) on-topic releif

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IaE3EaQte78

  20. #40
    Registered Senior Member Buffalo Roam's Avatar
    Posts
    16,931
    Quote Originally Posted by joepistole View Post
    Buffalo re-read what I posted. There are 101 votes in the Senate. You forgot the Vice President has a vote in the Senate...though he does not often use it. It does not change the fact that he has the vote.
    No, the only time the Vice President can vote is when there is a Tie Vote, and as the Senate now stands that can't happen, there are 51 votes in the Democratic Caucus, vs: 49 votes in the Republican Caucus.

    The Democrats control the leadership of all committees and Harry Reid is Senate Majority Leader, he controls what reaches the floor of the Senate for a Vote, he can keep what ever he wants off the floor for a vote just by pigeon holing the Bill, and never letting it see the light of day.

    1. Pass as is in the House........if this happens, it goes to the Senate

    2. Change it.......committee can change any bill. They many times call in experts to testify.

    3. Kill it.....if a bill dies in committee, the bill goes back to the author. That person can then either rewrite the bill and reintroduce it or can let it drop.

    4. Pigeon hole it... it can be placed in the "pigeon hole" and sits there until someone wants it reconsidered. It could stay here forever. It is not given back to the author when pigeon-holed.

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