Dear Readers: Another post after reviewing the next, dramatic installment of the “Debt Ceiling Saga”. I have come to the conclusion that the President is under the erroneous assumption that if he manages to shut-down government, as Clinton did in 1995, he will ride onto victory in 2012 because the rascally Republicans will be blamed.
That is not how it is going to play out. Why?
It is quite clear to all of us paying attention via the new media that the Democrats had oodles of time to address both the debt ceiling and create a budget. In fact, I had Professor Athena chime in with her savvy financial perspective:
I can sum up my feelings about the debt ceiling problems in a few sentences. There has been ample time to fix this. Democrats have not passed a budget since 2009 (and which they are REQUIRED to do by law). Who is the leader of that party who cannot be bothered??? Oh! That adult who just came back from a golf outing to remind us to eat our peas.
Let’s all rush to do that. I was for cut, cap, and balance. Because I am after all a finance person. We can’t afford any more nonsense, and we all know most of the fat in the three big entitlement systems are just that — nonsense. But that said, we can afford Social Security with just a few tweaks, one of which needs to be that Congress is no longer ALLOWED to spend the Social Security Trust Fund. I am for raising the eligibility age, and other minor reforms. Social Security for everyone 50 and under should be a phased-in privatized deal. If Americans only realized how much compound interest the government was cheating them out of there, they would opt for that system with open arms. The investment in a (think similar to IRA rules) private social security account should be deductible from your earnings and could even be withheld, with a cap up to a certain amount just as we see for Roth IRAs. Stop letting the federal government spend our retirement. Where the other two are concerned, we can afford Medicaid if we limit it as originally designed for the very poor (annual income of $40k or below), everyone else buys private insurance or goes to a Medicare voucher system, as Paul Ryan explained. A combination of the two would also work to phase out the huge federal spending for this entitlement and the running of hospitals and medical practices by the government instead of physicians and those who deserve to practice medicine as opposed to Medicare reimbursement. Make Medicaid block grants to the states, who do a much better job with accountability.
Next month I start on the huge waste of public dollars and resources by our public school systems and why they are the equivalent of buggy whip factories in an I-Phone world…
Professor Athena is one of many business and finance leaders unhappy with the “vision” the White House has for this country.
And while both sides share the blame for this fiasco, it is also apparent that John Boehner is no Newt Gingrich.
No matter what you may think of the House of Representative’s proposal, his press conference came from the gut, and was devoid of arrogance. It contrasted considerably from the Obama’s press snit. Keith Hennessey (via Instapundit) had an outstanding piece today, which indicates just how much Obama moved the goalpost and was undermining the deal he discussed with Boehner by using the “Gang of Six” proposal.
- As of last weekend, the President was willing to support three individual tax rates, and the top rate would be less than 35 percent. Team Obama also agreed that the difference between the top individual and corporate rates would be limited.
- After the Gang of Six released their plan, the President’s team backed away from this position.
- In addition, Team Obama suddenly insisted that refundable tax outlays (for the poor) not be reduced by tax reform.
Professor Jacobson (Legal Insurrection) adds an interesting new dimension on the debt ceiling saga from yesterday: Obama may be trying to create a market panic on Monday for so the Republicans are forced to cave and give him even more power under the McConnell plan: I agree with the analysis with one big exception, the use of the terms “first time” and “entirely new.” In fact, talking down the markets and creating a sense of panic is one of the few things Obama has done well.
I hope to God that the Republicans can make their case forcefully on the Sunday talk shows, as we have seen several fine examples of this over the past couple of days (e.g., Senator Ron Johnson). I also hope my citizen activist friends stay fully engaged with the new media and avoid the distractions the elite media is going to offer.
If we stay strong, we may have an economy as good as Canada’s! 🙂 (Hat-tip, W.C. Varones).