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The U.S. Careens Over the Fiscal Cliff, Reaching Only Half of a Deal

Unknown Lamer posted about a year and a half ago | from the as-surely-as-the-earth-turns dept.

United States 639

New submitter Jetra wrote with word that the House of Representatives failed to vote on the "fiscal cliff" deal before midnight, technically sending the U.S. over the fiscal cliff. The White House and Senate, however, reached an agreement at the last minute to allow for some tax increases, and a House vote approving it is expected in the next day or two: "The agreement came together after negotiators cleared two final hurdles involving the estate tax and automatic spending cuts set to hit the Pentagon and other federal agencies later this week. Republicans gave ground on the spending cuts, known as the sequester, by agreeing to a two-month delay paid for in part with fresh tax revenue, a condition they had resisted. White House officials yielded to GOP wishes on how to handle estate taxes, aides said." The battle over required spending cuts has predictably been delayed for another day, making the deal far from complete.

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639 comments

First Time (5, Informative)

Jetra (2622687) | about a year and a half ago | (#42438985)

I need to learn to submit good submissions.

Re:First Time (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439083)

If you wrote it, it was ok, if your original write up was hacked to pieces it happens. I've had about ten submissions posted and I don't even care to login
-zeroum

Re:First Time (1)

crafty.munchkin (1220528) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439125)

interesting... the article [theage.com.au] I read about this (as an external observer) indicated that a deal was reached... but this article seems to indicate the opposite.

Re:First Time (1)

Jetra (2622687) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439157)

Page not found....I could be wrong. I posted this before I found out that a deal was "within sight" if I remember reading.

Re:First Time (1)

jamstar7 (694492) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439173)

Hey, you tried. Points to you, and congrats on your first submission.

Re:First Time (1)

Jetra (2622687) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439181)

Thanks!

Re:First Time (1)

crafty.munchkin (1220528) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439175)

Oops... seems my trying to put target="_blank" at the end of my link stuffed up. This is the correct link [theage.com.au] .

Re:First Time (5, Insightful)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439445)

Careens over the cliff? I thought it was a rather graceful slide, myself.

Ehhh, that "fiscal cliff" thing was very over rated. The best thing they can possibly do, is to allow all those things to just kick in. Our government can never be out of debt, so long as they are paying bankers to administer our currency for their own profit. But, still, the best thing we can do is to raise taxes, and cut the many "entitlements". Starting, of course, with the very special entitlements for the rich.

A balanced budget amendment is what we need, more than anything else. The onl y sensible thing to do, is to ensure that our debt shrinks a little bit every year. GROWING the debt is just plain suicide.

Fuck the US (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42438989)

Their fat asses can eat my dick.

Re:Fuck the US (1, Flamebait)

anagama (611277) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439051)

Jeez -- don't give them any ideas. They'll gobble it up with relish.

Re:Fuck the US (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439335)

No relish. Just between two buns is fine.

Re:Fuck the US (1)

Austerity Empowers (669817) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439407)

Surely you're not paying attention. We'll tell you we don't like that, Jesus wouldn't approve, while a few would meet you in a bathroom stall with a bottle of relish. In response to your public offering, we may decide to invade your country to give you democracy (and Jesus), wherein an unmanned predator drone may choose to eat your dick too.

Re:Fuck the US (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439319)

What country do you live in and how much US foreign aid does it receive?

And this too shall pass away. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42438999)

"The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the publics money."

Re:And this too shall pass away. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439159)

Well I make roughly $50k, so if this late deal doesn't pan out this is going to cost me another $1,000 a year in taxes.

So Congress can feel free to bribe me with my own money. At what I make, another $1,000 a year really hurts.

Someone please remind me of this the next time I'm considering voting for a Democrat.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (2, Insightful)

jamstar7 (694492) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439195)

Why are you against voting for a Democrat when a Republican held the country hostage?

Re:And this too shall pass away. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439235)

Because the Republicans are insisting on spending cuts. Something the Democrats refuse to budge on. It's not the low taxes, it's the high government spending that's causing the problems. Limited government creates economic prosperity. Government largesse stifles it.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (5, Informative)

Trepidity (597) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439243)

The U.S. already has rather low government spending by first-world standards, though. Including lower than some countries who are outperforming us (e.g. Germany still has a successful manufacturing sector, and a positive trade balance).

Re:And this too shall pass away. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439285)

This is a lie, not just once, but twice.

The Democrats have compromised numerous times on the spending cuts. Obama's own proposal included many of them.

And no, it's not high government spending causing the problems, that's just the Republican mantra, even though they really do nothing to actually reduce the scale of government. They just prioritize things for their own needs.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439325)

the government has been spending nearly double what it earns for many years now, how is that not a spending problem? live within your means or pay the consequences later. It is almost time to pay the consequences and it is going to be severe no matter how you spin this one.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (3, Insightful)

The Master Control P (655590) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439321)

You realize America is trying to run a first-world state with taxes that are around half of what they are almost anywhere else in the developed world?

This is the horrible thing about the current Republicans operate... Break program X, whatever X was going continues to coast on inertia in the short term, they brag about how we obviously didn't need X. Then of course the fallout lands, but by then it's too late, because X is Big Gubbermint Soc'lisms now.

Well, 30 years of "the wealth will trickle down" are now coming back to haunt us. 30 years of "if we only cut taxes enough we'll be more prosperous" is now coming back to haunt us. 30 years of blind faith in the Invisible Hand are haunting us. Starting two land wars, and then cutting taxes instead of passing a war tax (the first time in American history any administration has been so staggeringly foolish) are coming back to haunt us.

We may not like it, but taxes are the price of civilization.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439375)

Starting two land wars, and then cutting taxes instead of passing a war tax (the first time in American history any administration has been so staggeringly foolish) are coming back to haunt us.

Well, somehow the village idiot/town drunk from Crawford, TX managed to make POTUS even when the other guy won the popular vote (and the electoral vote was ambiguous even until the end so SCOTUS had to figure it out). We've been paying for that mistake for 12 years so far and I'm afraid many more to come.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (1, Insightful)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439423)

The United States government gets plenty of taxes already, thanks. What's the figure, something like one-third to one-half of all wealth created in the nation goes to the government? New taxes are not the solution. They aren't even the precipitate. Give them more money, and they will just waste it. Guaranteed.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439439)

sadly though, instead of increasing taxes across the board (which is what is really needed), Obama is playing popular politics and pushing just for the mega rich to be taxed, everyone needs to pay more including the middle class.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439441)

You realize America is trying to run a first-world state with taxes that are around half of what they are almost anywhere else in the developed world?

The top US federal tax bracket is rising to 39%. Double that would be 78%. For reference, the top Canadian federal tax bracket is 29%.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439223)

I simply cannot imagine why anyone making 50K should even be asked to fill out a tax form, much less pay a dime of tax. I do not mean to belittle your income, but I have seen way too many welfare recipients make more than that.

Personally, I cannot see taxing anyone single under 50K or family under 100K.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439247)

You Sir, are a stupid, lying cunt.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439283)

How about those of us with cancer that pay additional taxes due to Obamacare with no benefit from the new law?

FSAs cut from $5000 to $2500.
Deductions for medical treatment start at 7% of income where they used to be 4% of income.

These are taxes that wouldn't have had any impact on me without cancer treatments, but because I now have massive medical bills these are significant tax increase in addition to the income tax increases.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (1)

number11 (129686) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439291)

I simply cannot imagine why anyone making 50K should even be asked to fill out a tax form, much less pay a dime of tax. I do not mean to belittle your income, but I have seen way too many welfare recipients make more than that.

Bullshit

Re:And this too shall pass away. (1)

TemperedAlchemist (2045966) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439389)

Welfare recipients won't make more than that, unless they're gaming the system through some elaborate ploy. Or if you have like 13 children.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (1)

pwizard2 (920421) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439395)

IIRC you have to file even if you make as little as $900 per year.

Re:And this too shall pass away. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439429)

Well I make roughly $50k, so if this late deal doesn't pan out this is going to cost me another $1,000 a year in taxes.

So Congress can feel free to bribe me with my own money. At what I make, another $1,000 a year really hurts.

Someone please remind me of this the next time I'm considering voting for a Democrat.

So it wasn't both Democrats and Republicans that agreed to this fiscal cliff as a motivation? Give me a break. If Republicans had agreed to defense cuts and taxes on the wealthy, none of this would have occurred. It is their stubbornness despite the fact that they lost all popular vote measures in the general election that allows this type of travesty to occur.

As far as I'm concerned, this fiscal cliff is a good thing. It is the first time in over a decade that the funding for the military industrial complex has decreased and taxes for the wealthy have increased. It is a pity that it is going to fuck the economy over, but you know that the Republicans would do that anyways with repeated filibusters on raising the debt ceiling. At least now when the recovery happens we won't have the Republicans being able to threaten a third recession.

Our universe is doomed! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439005)

DOOOOOOOOOOMED!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXU8w336oGs

Re:Our universe is doomed! (2)

Zemran (3101) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439329)

No sir, the universe is fine and the planet earth is happily looking forward to the extinction of the human infestation. If all the insects died tomorrow, all life on earth would die out within 3 months... but if all humans died tomorrow, life on earth would thrive.

let the cuts begin (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439009)

we spend trillions on many useless things - I'd be willing to wager quite a lot that most of these spending cuts won't amount to much for the majority of the population...and, we need to scale our military to what is prescribed by our constitution - a defensive force - some drastic cuts are needed there (spread over a few years to avoid a major shock to the system)

Re:let the cuts begin (5, Insightful)

SternisheFan (2529412) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439141)

Do you wonder, like I do, that the whole fiscal cliff thing is really just some bit of choreographed acting job? It had all the drama, tension and suspense of an action movie. And a last minute, down to the wire, happy ending. Gosh, makes a person feel like our representitives are really sweating for us, and their large salaries/perks. I feel so-o safe in their capable hands.

Re: choreographed acting job (2)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439293)

It absolutely is.

I dunno exactly who thought it up, but spending was never a problem for 8 years of "Staying The Course In The War On Terror".

Re:let the cuts begin (1)

MaerD (954222) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439443)

Congress built the cliff, willingly walked out on to and then stood around arguing about how to get down while half of them were trying to saw themselves off of it Wiley Coyote style.

Every single person (regardless of party affiliation) who voted *for* this charade in the first place should be voted out of office. Maybe the next person will get the message that you can't fool all of the people all of the time. I don't particularly care if we keep the same party in the seat, just change the person.

Woohoo! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439015)

Happy Fiscal Cliff, everybody!

Even better - (2)

davidwr (791652) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439049)

- first front page /. post of 2013.*

*official /. Standard (???!!!) Time.

Remember Remember (2)

bobstreo (1320787) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439019)

All the fine Congress critters and Representatives who managed to screw up something so simple.

In their next election.

Hint:
Vote them out.

Re:Remember Remember (2, Funny)

Jetra (2622687) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439037)

Tried that. Didn't seem to work. I'm going to vote Ron Paul until he's dead. Then, I'm going to clone him and attempt to get him in office until it is achieved.

Re:Remember Remembering (5, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439339)

And then when the first big hurricane, tornado or tsunami of Paul's presidency kills tens of thousands because NOAA has been wipes out, I'm sure you will feel proud of having put an ideological fruitcake in the White House.

Re:Remember Remembering (-1, Troll)

Jetra (2622687) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439397)

At least he gets shit done, unlike Olame-a.

Re:Remember Remembering (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439433)

And then when the first big hurricane, tornado or tsunami of Paul's presidency kills tens of thousands because NOAA has been wipes out, I'm sure you will feel proud of having put an ideological fruitcake in the White House.

Dude, report to your CO. Now. That's an order. You swore to an oath of secrecy regarding HAARP and the MIC's ability to create hurricanes, tornadoes, and tsunamis. You'll be lucky to not be court martialed!

Re:Remember Remember (1)

jhoegl (638955) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439061)

The problem is clear.
There are those that "signed" the no new tax vow, which is backed by large money if you break it.
But if you dont, you get that money.
Our congress is in its state because people have been openly bought by the system we have.
It is time to get some laws in there to prevent this shit, or start cleaning house.

Re:Remember Remember (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439165)

The problem is clear. There are those that "signed" the no new tax vow, which is backed by large money if you break it.

Apparently it is not clear given that you are offering the Norquist red herring. The actual problem is that the current plan being offered is quite light on the spending cuts side. We've seen this before, tax increases now, budget cuts promised for later ... however the budget cuts never happen. The House is actually quite reasonable in wanting to see real spending cuts in the current plan.

Re:Remember Remember (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439207)

Forgot to explain why the Norquist pledge is a red herring ...

Jan 1, 2013 12:00 am the tax cuts expire and rates are increased.
At 12:01 am a bill cutting taxes for those earning below $XXX could have been passed. Dems get their increase on the "rich". Repubs never voted for a tax increase, just a tax cut for the middle class. Everyone wins.

As stated previously, the real problem was the lack of spending cuts.

They didn't even have to wait (2, Insightful)

Leuf (918654) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439303)

Letting a temporary tax cut expire isn't raising taxes, anymore than not continuing to get a Christmas bonus in January isn't cutting your pay. I really have no idea why no one calls them on this nonsense. If you are only interesting in technically not raising taxes then you can play whatever word games you want.

The problem is that Republicans see this as an opportunity to cut every program that they disagree with while continuing to spend just as much or even more on the things they do agree with. This is their opportunity to do with the budget what they can't do with votes or the courts, and they won't accept that their little fantasy isn't possible.

Did they sign Norquist ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439063)

Norquist's pledge, he got Republicans to sign a pledge that they wouldn't raise taxes (even to pay for stuff they introduced like Medicare and wars).

IMHO, if they signed that, then why did we elect them? Why didn't we elect their boss Norquist? Who runs the government a lobbyist for the rich or the elected representative?

We need to vote out Norquist proxies, because they don't represent their electorate, they represent Norquist.

Re:Did they sign Norquist ? (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439373)

The Republicans are taking care of Norquist's puppets. The rank and file realize the Tea Party isn't just a cancer on the GOP, it's a potentially fatal one. They realize all to clearly that the only thing that prevented a total loss in Washington was gerrymandering, and with the major demographic shifts occurring even in supposedly rock solid red states, they don't have that long to get their shit together. Norquist will soon be forgotten, Tea Party Representatives will either be detoxed or marginalized.

It may be too soon for GOP hopes for the 2014 midterms, but Norquist-style stupidity has to been by 2016.

Re:Did they sign Norquist ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439435)

IMO, anyone who signed the Norquist pledge is guilty of treason (or sedition at the very least).

Re:Remember Remember (5, Insightful)

anagama (611277) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439079)

Won't happen due to the district gerymandering.

Over the last 20 years, the number of House districts that swing between political parties has shrunk by two-thirds from 103 in 1992 to roughly 35 today, Silver found. At the same time, the number of districts where parties win by landslides has nearly doubled from 123 to 242.

Today, 55 percent of House members come from districts where their biggest threat is losing a primary election, not the general election. Of the landslide districts, 124 are held by Republicans and 117 Democrats (one is an independent). They have little incentive to compromise. Instead, their incentive is to play to their party base. Making independent boards responsible for redistricting, as some states have done, would be far better.

http://www.nationaljournal.com/politics/america-s-greatest-economic-weakness-in-2012-was-its-government-20121231 [nationaljournal.com]

Re:Remember Remember (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439081)

All the fine Congress critters and Representatives who managed to screw up something so simple. In their next election. Hint: Vote them out.

What did they screw up? If they failed to come up with a plan we get across the board budget cuts. That is probably the most reasonable thing that could happen. All the plans being floated do not really cut spending. These plans mere slow the rate of growth in spending and falsely call this slower rate of growth budget cuts.

Re:Remember Remember (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439123)

All the fine Congress critters and Representatives who managed to screw up something so simple. In their next election. Hint: Vote them out.

A majority of the House of Representatives were ***voted in*** with a mandate to not give Obama everything he wants. By not accepting the President's proposals and forcing the President and the Senate to actually specify budget cuts rather than make an ambiguous promise to cut something in the future, the House is doing what it was elected to do.

Contrary to the President's belief, he was not the only one who won an election in 2012.

Re:Vote them out. (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439279)

We actually did, the next batch of critters will have 100 newbies, who are even LESS willing to compromise. The Tea Party has trapped the R side of the Aisle.

Re:Remember Remember (1)

anubi (640541) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439301)

We try. Most people seem to vote for those with the most "microphone time", backed by the media. Geez, I get so frustrated on how we sheeple do whatever the microphone men of the media hock up into the little chrome stick.

I have been hoping so much that the internet would offer so many alternatives to the megacorp media that their megadollars would not be able to buy elections. I would much rather see a record of how the politician used his pen and his vote. I note businesses keep records of who keeps their promises ( Equifax, TRW, TransUnion, ChoicePoint, etc. ) and I would see databases of CongressCritters along with their "credit score" of how effectively they serve the public-at-large. A congresscritter wagging his pen for a corporation wanting special-interest law passed to guarantee private monopolization would quickly see his credibility rating zonked. The laws already existing which hold credit rating agencies harmless for defamation of character should be sufficient for holding politicians to their word as well.

But so far, we simply seem like sheep, going wherever the media-men shepherds herd us... including into the shearing room when its friggen cold outside.

Gee, do you really think that was an accident? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439025)

And do you think it was an accident that the Christmas money is already spent by the time this news comes out?
Whoops, I guess you shoulda saved that money.

Time to jump up and down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439029)

Time to jump up and down. with joy

Who cares... (3, Funny)

banbeans (122547) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439033)

Who cares...
It is all bread and circus anyway.

Re:Who cares... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439377)

The IRS mafia cares. They want the majority of the fruits of my labor to go to my enemies, thereby making my life work pointless. Any resistance, and you'll be in prison for the rest of your life [wikipedia.org] .

--libman

Solved (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439041)

"After the usual hemming and hawing, horse-trading and partisan hysterics, Congress and the White House have seemingly agreed to a deal to get the country passed the so-called “fiscal cliff.” (Worth noting: The deal has yet to pass the Senate or House — meaning that it is not totally done just yet. But, it does appear to be as close to a done deal as possible.)"

too late slashdot

Fiscal cliff (5, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439057)

Yes, the fiscal cliff -- the totally preventable budget crisis that we created for ourselves because we couldn't figure out how to work together. And, apparently, still can't. So now our fragile economic recovery is going to be thrown under a bus... because we can't play nice with each other. That's a great way to signal the start of a new year. What next, placing bombs under things with two keys, one given to a republican, the other to a democrat, and then a timer set and they have to figure out how to work together or it explodes? :(

It's stuff like this that make me wonder what the hell is wrong with my country.

Re:Fiscal cliff (1)

currently_awake (1248758) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439071)

This is what you get in a country with no leadership.

Re:Fiscal cliff (4)

jamstar7 (694492) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439093)

This is what you get in a country with no leadership.

No, this is what you get when you have a bought and paid for Congress. Lobby money bought them, now they're delivering on their promises to keep from raising taxes on the rich and the corporations.

Re:Fiscal cliff (1)

rtb61 (674572) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439185)

Not to forget. Also allow them to blatantly cheat with overseas tax havens and fraudulent charges so as to off shore profits. They wouldn't need to raise taxes if they just collected on the ones owed both federal and state.

Re:Fiscal cliff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439131)

There are plenty of leadership - there's no dictator leadership however.

Re:Fiscal cliff (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439073)

It's stuff like this that make me wonder what the hell is wrong with my country.

It's simple. The electorate views compromise as a weakness, and elects people with similar views.

Re:Fiscal cliff (4, Insightful)

Jetra (2622687) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439095)

Why are the good ones anon cowards?

Re:Fiscal cliff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439183)

Because I don't want this kind of misanthropy tarnishing my good name. Also I always post AC when I'm drunk.

Re:Fiscal cliff (-1, Troll)

BlueStrat (756137) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439169)

It's stuff like this that make me wonder what the hell is wrong with my country.

No need to wonder.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progressivism_in_the_United_States [wikipedia.org]

They're in leadership positions in both parties and are deeply-entrenched in the government bureaucracy. That's why no matter which party wins elections, nothing much (that really matters) changes. The only real battles are between Progressives who want to start filling up the FEMA camps now, and the ones that think the frogs should be heated a bit longer first.

Strat

Re:Fiscal cliff (2)

Billly Gates (198444) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439171)

"Yes, the fiscal cliff -- the totally preventable budget crisis"

No, this is exactly a preventative crises aka Greece style 1000x over!

I do not agree with Republicans 100% of the time including the pledge not to raise taxes when you have 160% debt to assets ratios! But this? Yes, the Tea Party said enough is enough and put their foot down saying "If you are not going to be serious grownups and live within your means with no plans to pay it back, then I wont sign the check". That is what the debt ceiling is.

It is not a new budget. It is to pay your existing bill. Every American owes $150,000 each [youtube.com] and by not going off the fiscal cliff you are telling your creditors that you wont pay them back! In essence raising the debt ceiling is simply paying your credit card bill by charging to the same company over and over again.

Look at that video above to get an idea averaged out. So on average, we all pay $20,000 in yet owe $150,000 with no plan in site other than ... oh yeah the economy will eventually get better and we all will ahve so much money after the great recession that we can pay it back. Any bond investor would be nuts to invest in the dollar right now.

Republicans are trying to do the right thing and that is do what they were hired for. To put in an ultra conservative mandate in 2010 to stop government and bailouts. Not everyone agrees with this, but I happen to feel Obama is not being serious enough with cuts and republicans know how to talk to the talk but refuse to raise taxes.

We need 5 fiscal cliffs in a row for the next 20 years to dig out of this hole. Seriously, Americans are clueless and watch what will happen next?

Re:Fiscal cliff (1)

ub3r n3u7r4l1st (1388939) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439221)

The debt is an illusion.

Greece's debt are denominated in Euros, not drachmas. The Greeks can't print Euros by themselves to pay them off.

U.S. debts are denominated in U.S. dollars, something our government can easily produce unlimited amounts via the Platinum Coin Seigniorage, and pay it off.

Re:Fiscal cliff (2, Insightful)

Billly Gates (198444) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439233)

Then you have hyperinflation. We are seeing this now with home prices skyrocketing, food, fuel, insurance, and other services going up. The rich will just get richer and use the extra fake money to raise prices and collect rents off the poor making everyone not them poorer.

You also have a potential situation where bond investors see the value of the dollar going to shit and demanding skyhigh interest rates due to the risk. Then you have to print more and more which creates the rates even higher! A depression will start either way.

You can not engineer out of a debt crises. The only way out is to pay out.

Re:Fiscal cliff (1, Interesting)

ub3r n3u7r4l1st (1388939) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439349)

You are assuming the extra money generated will go to the rich. A proper full employment social program and expansion of infrastructure spending will ensure money flows to the bottom of the ladder.

We don't need bond investors, as there is no need to borrow money anymore. We can issue "ceremonial" or "souvenir" bonds, and the interest rate at OUR choosing. Either pay or leave.

I suggest you to read the following article about the illusion of the national debt:

http://neweconomicperspectives.org/2012/12/americas-deceptive-2012-fiscal-cliff-part-2.html#more-4107 [neweconomi...ctives.org]

We have enough natural resources to cut off our imports. Then we can also utilize our world's strongest military to nationalize resources around the world for our interests.

Saying "the only way is to pay out" is the same is subduing yourself for being raped by the international bankers.

Re:Fiscal cliff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439277)

Every American owes $150,000 each

There lies the problem. This is why the Jews had such a beautiful idea with jubilee.

Remind me again what exactly is my incentive to pay the debt of 3 previous generations of Americans before I was born?

I actually physically spit toward people that tell me how much I owe the government. Fuck that shit.

Re:Fiscal cliff (4, Insightful)

quantaman (517394) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439417)

But this? Yes, the Tea Party said enough is enough and put their foot down saying "If you are not going to be serious grownups and live within your means with no plans to pay it back, then I wont sign the check". That is what the debt ceiling is.

Except the middle of an economic crisis is a really bad time to suddenly get concerned about the dept (why weren't they around in the Bush years?), particularly if your attempt at austerity causes the economy to go into recession, the tax receipts to plummet, and the social safety net to balloon.

It is not a new budget. It is to pay your existing bill. Every American owes $150,000 each [youtube.com] and by not going off the fiscal cliff you are telling your creditors that you wont pay them back! In essence raising the debt ceiling is simply paying your credit card bill by charging to the same company over and over again.

...

Any bond investor would be nuts to invest in the dollar right now.

Apparently the market disagrees with your assessment since treasury bonds are at record lows [blogspot.com] . All those people are apparently convinced they're going to get paid back, as someone with faith in the market I tend to take their word over yours.

Republicans are trying to do the right thing and that is do what they were hired for. To put in an ultra conservative mandate in 2010 to stop government and bailouts. Not everyone agrees with this, but I happen to feel Obama is not being serious enough with cuts and republicans know how to talk to the talk but refuse to raise taxes.

We need 5 fiscal cliffs in a row for the next 20 years to dig out of this hole. Seriously, Americans are clueless and watch what will happen next?

The Tea Party had a bit of a mandate in 2010, but now they've definitely lost it. And it's quite doable to start paying off the dept without a cliff, simply wait for the economy to get going again, then raise taxes, slash military spending, slash healthcare spending, maybe a few other bits, then soon you'll be in the black and paying off the dept.

Re:Fiscal cliff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439261)

They all need to be brought up on treason charges and dealt with quickly and *most* harshly. Every. Last. One.

Are there any vertabrate lifeforms in Washington? (4, Insightful)

stox (131684) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439059)

If there are, they are surely on the endangered species list.

Screw 'em All! Let's Go Over the Goddamn Cliff (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439097)

On the radio today: "The 'fiscal cliff', which merited no mention whatsoever prior to the election, has since the day after the election relentlessly provided citizens with non-stop spine-tingling, nail-biting thrills."

Piss on 'em! Let's go over the cliff. In 2014 we'll elect even more Tea Party representatives and further reduce the excesses of federal spending that are bankrupting this nation. By 2016 there should be enough congressional support to do some slash-and-burn on both domestic and military spending. Maybe get rid of DHS, FISA court system, Guantanamo and repeal the Patriot Act too.

Re:Screw 'em All! Let's Go Over the Goddamn Cliff (0)

mdenham (747985) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439145)

And by 2018 North America should be the proud home of at least a dozen new countries, because the Tea stands for treason.

Re:Screw 'em All! Let's Go Over the Goddamn Cliff (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439217)

The Tea Party is trying to save America from a horrible meltdown by 2018 aka Greece style with 100x worse due to the US being bigger and having assets all over the world.

Your 401k GONE, Stocks gone, your dollars? Worthless, unless you have gold. The best way to prevent it is to raise taxes and cut spending. It is time we paid the bills. I do not agree with the NO NEW TAXES pledge at all.

Here is how an economist views this [youtube.com] . FYI he was one of the few who predicted this recession and told everyone that a horrible crises was coming in 2006 and was laughed off stage. He was right due to looking at debt ratios.

Is it really wise to keep signing a check over and over again like this [youtube.com] ? Something has to give. Either you have Greece style panic and a 2nd great depression or Bernakke prints money fast and we all have hyper inflation (we are seeing this now in food, insurance, gas, etc).

Re:Screw 'em All! Let's Go Over the Goddamn Cliff (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439343)

The Tea Party is trying to save America from a horrible meltdown by 2018 aka Greece style with 100x worse due to the US being bigger and having assets all over the world.

The Tea Party is a bunch of hysterical butt monkeys then, because they're obsessed with Greece for some harebrained reason while failing to realize that Greece built their economy on tourism, sold themselves out to international banks and couldn't do anything about it.

We, as you point out, have assets all over the world, and don't have to kow-tow to financiers. We could get in their face, point out that bailout they got, and realize that they exist only to parasitically leach off the rest of us.

Then shoot them. Because they are criminals.

Your 401k GONE, Stocks gone, your dollars? Worthless, unless you have gold.

Gold is worthless unless people want it. I really don't value it that much.

The best way to prevent it is to raise taxes and cut spending.

The President has tried to cut spending. Remember that outrage over Medicare cuts? Or how Romney complained about how Obama was cutting vital US defense spending?

Fuckers don't care about doing things right.

It is time we paid the bills. I do not agree with the NO NEW TAXES pledge at all.

Good. Go shoot that traitor Grover Norquist.

Here is how an economist views this [youtube.com] . FYI he was one of the few who predicted this recession and told everyone that a horrible crises was coming in 2006 and was laughed off stage. He was right due to looking at debt ratios.

Is it really wise to keep signing a check over and over again like this [youtube.com] ? Something has to give.

One of the few? Any Idiot could have predicted it in 2000 when the GBL deregulation bill passed.

Either you have Greece style panic and a 2nd great depression or Bernakke prints money fast and we all have hyper inflation (we are seeing this now in food, insurance, gas, etc).

No we aren't. I admit, I am seeing my insurance company deciding to screw me by switching my roof coverage to value of the materials (ie, they can depreciate it ) from replacement cost, but that's not hyper-inflation.

That's them being greedy dicks.

Same with the rise in gas prices. It's not inflation-driven. It's greed driven.

Re:Screw 'em All! Let's Go Over the Goddamn Cliff (3, Insightful)

mdenham (747985) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439411)

we all have hyper inflation (we are seeing this now in food, insurance, gas, etc).

Hyperinflation has a specific definition (50% or higher monthly inflation, so ~12,900% annual inflation).

No, we are not seeing hyperinflation. We aren't even seeing inflation anywhere close to what has historically been "high" in the US, except in the healthcare field! Hell, up until this weekend, gas prices were dropping.

The Tea Party is trying to undo everything that made the country great back in the 50s and early 60s. What do you call someone trying to undermine the country?

Even if the House doesn't vote on Tuesday, (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439099)

watch the market skyrocket 300 points on Wednesday.

Welcome to Cliff year (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439113)

2013 is going to be known for

1. fiscal cliff
2. milk cliff
3. agri cliff
4. medi cliff
5. tax cliff
6. food cliff
7. bank cliff
8. slashdot cliff
9. hurricane cliff
10. bunghole cliff

Re:Welcome to Cliff year (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439153)

You forgot the return of Heathcliff

Re:Welcome to Cliff year (1)

PNutts (199112) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439379)

12. Cliff Clavin

Platinum Coin Seigniorage (PCS) hack (1, Interesting)

ub3r n3u7r4l1st (1388939) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439139)

The only legitimate solution to the debt crisis. The treasury should immediately mint a $1 quadrillion platinum coin and deposit to the fed, using the proceeds to pay off ALL obligations.

http://neweconomicperspectives.org/2012/12/new-msm-trillion-dollar-coin-wave-heres-the-big-story.html [neweconomi...ctives.org]

Read carefully if you still believe that will be inflationary. For those who don't want to be "otaku" on those subjects, in one sentence: Debt repayment by PCS will not be inflationary. Starting new spending is inflationary.

By doing so, the power of the Federal Reserve ( to inflate money supply) is stripped and going back to the government, exactly what Ron Paul has tried to achieve.

IMHO, the PCS Hack gives to the presidency the power to prevent an abuse of power by the Congress, namely the debt ceiling legislation itself, and also gives the President the power to avoid interest bearing debt instrument-based financing of Congressional deficit spending appropriations if he/she desires. I think both of these are very good things, especially since the key power of controlling the purse strings still remains with the Congress, and not with the President. It seems to me that any greater leverage that falls to the President as a result of using PCS is leverage that can always seized back by Congress anytime it wants to do its collective job and represent the majority of the American people. On the other hand, if it wants to continue to represent narrow and plutocratic interests seeking to block any Federal spending that doesnâ(TM)t directly benefit them, then PCS profits may be viewed as a check on such an abuse of power by the Congress, and a reminder to Congress that the âoehow are we gonna pay for itâ excuse for not legislating Federal programs people desperately need won't work anymore!

Cut the bullshit. (1)

Seumas (6865) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439177)

There aren't ever going to be any "spending cuts".

When both sides talk about "spending cuts", they really mean "instead of increasing spending by a $500 million for this project over the next five years, we're going to increase it by $400 million -- HURRAH, WE CUT $100 MILLION IN SPENDING! YAY!".

Fucking thieving scum.

Spending cuts = job cuts (1)

elucido (870205) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439273)

And with the population increasing we can't afford either spending or job cuts.

Re:Spending cuts = job cuts (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439345)

then by all means continue on the way the US is going for a few more years then you can experience what Greece is currently going through, though without the other larger countries that the Greek have to save them the US will hit bottom and hit it much much harder.

Re:Spending cuts = job cuts (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439355)

I call Keynesian bullcrap on you good Sir.

Re:Spending cuts = job cuts (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439387)

Agreed. Kenyes' economics is so full of shit these days it's shovel ready

Re:Spending cuts = job cuts (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439367)

population is relatively stagnate in the US. What's more you don't need more government jobs just because you have more population. With the advances in technology in the last 2 decades governments have become way over bloated, creating jobs simply to avoid downsizing, it has to stop.

It's all theater (2)

BenSchuarmer (922752) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439317)

Democrats wanted to raise taxes on the rich, but most of the Republicans vowed to not raise taxes.

Now that we've gone over the fiscal cliff taxes have been raised without anybody having to vote for it. The can cut taxes for the non-rich so the Democrats get what they want and Republicans can say with a straight face that they didn't raise taxes.

Fuck this shit.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439371)

Why not just sign an executive order saying "Never mind this BS, and let's fire who ever had this idea in the first place.. into the sun."?

Seriously, whoever had this idea of playing Russian Roulette with our economy needs to spend some time in Gitmo.

Teabagger Repubs created the fiscal cliff (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42439381)

Please remind eveyone you know that the Republican party were behind the legislation that created this artificial fiscal cliff as an act of political brinksmanship to impose their policies into the budget. Any fallout can be laid at their doorstep. Why the President is negotiating at all is a bit of a mystery to me.

Being a non-Republican conservative, I'm okay with going over the cliff. We need both the reduction in spending and backlash to decimate the extremist Republicans currently in office.

Summary is ridiculously misleading (2)

butlerm (3112) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439385)

The summary is ridiculously misleading. The Senate didn't vote before midnight either. They have yet to hold a vote, although supposedly one is scheduled for about 4:00 a.m. EST. Sometime tomorrow morning the House will reconvene to consider whatever the Senate passes.

You're all wrong. (1)

inode_buddha (576844) | about a year and a half ago | (#42439431)

Onan the barbarian developed opposable thumbs in order to whack it better. Imagine what it must be like to fap without the benefit of thumbs. It almost makes you cry, no? But nay, we overcame adversity! Fapping is an essential survival skill, for keeping an even temperament and surviving a partnership in which you're not getting any. Which both are desirable traits for selection in this day and age. Notice how the ladies are drawn to an even-tempered steady mate. How do you think he got that way!? Opposable thumbs of course!

Let's face it -- everyone does it. Every single man that you have ever shook hands with, has fapped with that hand.

Have a nice day!

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