Debtor Nation: Treasury Quietly Adds Another $1 Trillion In Debt

As many on the blog are aware, I am a fiscal conservative and social liberal (the profile of many a libertarian). I have previously railed against our soaring debt and the continued inability of our presidents and members of Congress to exercise a modicum of fiscal responsibility. This is a new low with the Treasury Department taking on $1trillion in more debt — for a second year in a row. We are saddling our children with this crippling level of debt to avoid our politicians to escape their responsibility to make tough decisions. With the start of the 2020 presidential election, politicians are lining up with expansive new spending proposals to entice supporters as our government plunges deeper into debt.

Congress in March approved a bloated $1.3 trillion spending bill. Notably, the stumbling block in the end was not a demand for fiscal responsibility but an objection from a Republican Senator over the renaming of an Idaho wilderness area.

Representative Nita M. Lowey (D., NY) heralded the spending bill as “repudiat[ing] the abysmal Trump budget, investing robustly in critical priorities like child care, transportation infrastructure, national security, election protection, medical research, opioid abuse prevention and treatment, veterans’ health services and much more.” What it did not do is make responsible cuts to balance programs. There were big increases for both defense and domestic programs. I also disagree with the Trump Administration which seems to relish cuts in the environment (which produce collateral and greater costs) while increasing spending on defense and other preferred areas.

With new election, this will only get worse as candidates dangle shiny and expensive objects before the voters to induce their votes. Despite watching meltdowns in countries like Greece and Spain over debt, we are gleefully adding debt and kicking the can down the road for a future generation to face the consequences.

173 thoughts on “Debtor Nation: Treasury Quietly Adds Another $1 Trillion In Debt”

  1. Representative Nita M. Lowey (D., NY) heralded the spending bill as “repudiat[ing] the abysmal Trump budget, investing robustly in critical priorities like child care, transportation infrastructure, national security, election protection, medical research, opioid abuse prevention and treatment, veterans’ health services and much more.”

    1. There are no economies of scale in the realm of ‘child care’ which would justify locating the finance of it in the central government. Publicly financed ‘child care’ is a dubious enterprise anyway, but it can certainly be undertaken by county governments or multi-county authorities if there’s a local constituency for it.

    2. Again, we have a network of provincial governments who are quite capable of maintaining their own roads. One qualification to that would be that some measures might be undertaken to see to it that the long-haul interstates all meet some baseline expectations of quality. That can be addressed by having a federal inspectorate with the authority to place the maintenance of a given patch under federal trusteeship and incorporating dedicated funds in each state for the maintenance of long-haul Interstates. The federal government could finance these funds by instituting tolls and allocating the sum of toll revenue to the state funds according to the acreage of macadam in each state.

    3. Democrats aren’t interested in ‘election protection’. They’re interested in preventing decent people from disrupting their vote-stealing schemes.

    4. ‘Opiod abuse prevention’ is code for ‘jobs for twits with MSW degrees’. Straightening out actual addicts (not nonsense like ‘preventing addiction’) is a ministerial function, not a state function. People who do it are assisted by banks and the criminal justice system, which are intrusions of reality in the life of addicts. Even if you had publicly financed drug rehab, county governments and multi-county consortia are capable of handling it.

    5. Democrats aren’t interested in national security.

    6. The problems with ‘Veterans health services’ are a function of command-and-control delivery systems

    7. ‘Much much more’. Yeah, we figured.

    1. Tabby, disjointed points that add up to nothing.

      A national system for child daycare could theoretically have ‘positive’ longterm effects. We can’t have our population aging-out because women are afraid to leave their jobs. And this trend has already taken hold in Japan and many western nations. Aging populations are the ultimate dead-end!

      And what make you think every state is committed to maintaining good roads? Some states value tax cuts more than infrastructure. In fact the Koch Bros have ‘convinced’ most Republicans that tax cuts ‘are’ more important than infrastructure improvements.

      And Tabby, show us a poll that says the public is eager to embrace toll roads as the future of transportation. I can’t think of an idea that would alienate the public ‘more’ than toll roads. But Republicans love the idea because toll roads allow the preservation of tax cuts. In fact, toll roads are the Republican answer to infrastructure improvements.

      1. Tabby, disjointed points that add up to nothing.

        Like everyone else here. I can explain something to you. I cannot comprehend it for you.

  2. Getting ready to pay your taxes? What if you had to pay for all of what your federal government has made you responsible?

    Like all government spending government debt is also an expenditure underwritten by taxpayers. This year again taxpayers must set aside time to calculate what the government demands they owe. But always missing in the process determining all of what they owe is the federal government liability we know as the “US National Debt” currently nearing $22 trillion.

    Whatever each taxpayer calculates their tax to be for 2018 they should add another $179,465 for their share of the “US National Debt” for which the government has made them liable. If that is not bad enough, what also should be figured in what taxpayers owe is their share of the federal government’s liabilities that are unfunded.

    Unfunded liabilities of which the US Federal Budget Deficit, Social Security, and Medicare are the largest have broken above $122 trillion and rising. With each taxpayer share of unfunded federal liabilities currently at $999,499, the total tax for which they are ultimately responsible is $1,178,964 more than just what their filed tax return indicates they owe.

    1. But…but…won’t that be paid for by the evil rich people and corporations???

    2. Without concerning myself on the numbers Ron provided there is one thing too many people forget, interest on the debt. That amount varies based on the interest rates the US government is forced to pay. At present we are near historic lows in interest payments so I believe our interest has fallen from near highs of around 14%+ to around 7% today.

      When companies or governments keep piling on debt their interest rates rise and they can rise dramatically. If everything else was equal and interest rates rose to near former highs the interest we would be paying could double or more. Unless one wants to see a Venzuela one can’t keep paying those interest payments by creating more debt and printing more money.

      It doesn’t matter what anyone thinks. It is a pure numbers game that isn’t influenced by opinion or need. In the near future we could have a crisis though the American people won’t recognize it as such. Instead they will be complaining of stagnant wages, less benefits, higher prices and watching fixed benefits (especially retirees) melt and fade away. That is what happens when the government prints money and we saw that under the Carter administration where low income seniors saw half of their wealth disappear while prices rose.

      Think about this carefully. Presently our economy is showing growth. We are in a cyclical economy. What happens when that stops or reverses?

      1. Yeah, Alan, what happens when the next, inevitable recession hits?

        Because Trump cut taxes in the best of times, there will be no room for tax cuts when this expansion sputters out. For this reason alone, the Trump tax cuts were Voodoo Economics of the worst kind.

        1. Peter Shill, dumber than sh!t. The most important thing for defense of this nation in times of war and in times of economic slowness is a strong economy. Employment of workers is crucial as is job creation and retention of important profitable industries along with R&D.

          Taxes can always be raised and lowered. Putting our corporations at an economic disadvantage sends our jobs, industry and strength abroad.

          Peter I don’t know which is worse, that your are a Shill or completely dumb.

          1. Alan, it is starkly evident that you can’t answer the question of ‘how’ we stimulate the economy when the next recession hits.

            Trump bucked conventional economic wisdom by cutting taxes amid a bullish expansion. That leaves us far less slack for cutting taxes ‘when’ we really need to.

            If you were carrying heavy debts and had a good year when income spiked, you would logically use that spiked income to pay-down your debts. You wouldn’t squander that year by taking on ‘more’ debt. But that’s precisely what Trump and the Republicans did; ‘they squandered good times for a mindless sugar rush’.

            And ‘you’ call me “stupid” for not seeing the logic of that sugar rush?

            1. “Alan, it is starkly evident that you can’t answer the question of ‘how’ we stimulate the economy when the next recession hits.”

              Really? That is your conclusion? You are like my neighbor who crashed his 2 engine plane when one engine blew out. He pulled the wrong way when if he had only let go and used less control his plane would have righted itself and he could have landed safely. [Study FDR’s depressio and his other one after 1933 and listen to what his secretary of the treasury, Henry Morgenthau Jr., had to say, “we’re spending more than ever and it doesn’t work”.]

              Stimuli can help but there are many kinds of stimuli available if one believes stimuli have to be used. Yes, they can prop up an economy but eventually that money added to the economy has to be taken away. That is probably one of the reasons for our recent stock decline that made you sh1t in your pants. You are a know-nothing. If there wasn’t low fruit close to the ground you would starve to death.

              1. Alan, you can’t answer the question. Instead you just get increasingly hostile.

                The truth is: ‘Robust expansions are the best time to pay-down debt and deficit”.

                You don’t waste robust expansions on unneeded stimulus.

                1. “Alan, you can’t answer the question. Instead you just get increasingly hostile.”

                  Peter I can’t help it if your intellect is so low that you have difficulty understanding the printed word. You think simple answers to yes or no questions suffice because anything more than a simple answer wil fly above your head.

                  I mentioned tax cuts and I mentioned subsidies both of which can stimulate an economy but eventually have to be paid back. Apparently that was too much information for you. I also mentioned that we need not jerk the economy into compliance as that can crash it and along with that I mentioned the first part of the depression during FDR along with another dip that was likely due to many of his policies. That too apparently went over your head. In other posts I mentioned a lot of other things but when there is nothing but air between the ears things go in one ear and out the other.

                2. stuff like fixing cruddy bridges and airports is perhaps “stimulus” but it is also needed infrastructure so it would have been a good thing to do a little bit more of but instead that too has been sabotaged by Democrats

                  a border wall would be good too oh boy they don’t want that, it might stop future generations of Democrats from being born here in the US to migrants

                  1. “a border wall would be good”

                    Kurtz if one selects their metrics carefully enough they can prove anything so what one needs to do is agree on the metrics to use and how they will be used. Unfortunately Peter might know the definition of the word metric but doesn’t understand them and his mathematical abilities are near nil.

                    Take the wall. there are all sorts of predictions using a multiple of metrics. Firstly it is a permanent fixture that doesn’t depreciate like many other expenditures and it has a purpose. Where did Obama put money? Solyndra which eventually failed so that every dollar was essentially lost. But at the same time money to Solyndra hurt competing companies and reduced their potential revenues. That is one way of providing a stimulus that leads to a lot of wasted money and a negative stimulus for other in the economy. Another way was cash for clunkers which reduced the number of old automobiles on the streets. Decreases in supplies raises the value of what remains and what remained was bought for the most part by poorer people that then had to pay a higher price. The wall helps stop drugs from entering the country. Since 72,000 died of drugs that might not be a bad deal especially since the costs to society based on drugs is likely in the three figure billions. Additionally the wall can stimulate the economy and help improve our steel industry without destroying American competitors like the Solyndra deal did. All of this and more involve deeper layers of thinking that Peter is unable to do.

              2. [Study FDR’s depressio and his other one after 1933 and listen to what his secretary of the treasury, Henry Morgenthau Jr., had to say, “we’re spending more than ever and it doesn’t work”.]

                There was no ‘FDR’s Depression’. There was a rapid economic recovery which lasted from the spring of 1933 to the end of 1937, a sharp contraction which lasted from early 1937 to mid-1938, and a rapid economic recovery which ran from mid-1938 to the onset of the 2d World War. A number of possible triggers to the 1937-38 contraction have been offered. I think the modal one today in scholarly circles identifies monetary policy – sterilizing gold flows – as the culprit.

                However rapidly production recovered over those years, the labor market did not. Elevated unemployment rates were the order of the day prior to the war, partially ameliorated by public employment schemes. Certain policies followed by the Democratic Party exacerbated this situation, but slow labor market recoveries you see in a variety of circumstances.

                1. “There was no ‘FDR’s Depression’. There was a rapid economic recovery which lasted from the spring of 1933 to the end of 1937, a sharp contraction which lasted from early 1937 to mid-1938, ”

                  DSS, that is the second dip that occurred during FDR’s administration rather than starting in another administration. I think it was best seen in the fall of monetary supply and increased unemployment. My contention is that the second contraction which was severe should not have occurred. If you want to make your case you will have to use raw numbers for a lot of things were happening.

                  The depression ended with the war, but before the war there was a deterioration in the poltical situation in Europe and gold flowed into the US. Causes and solutions are controversial as well as what actually brought us out of the depression. You seem to favor FDR’s economic policies more than I. I don’t think either of us can prove a strong case to favor one or the other.

                  1. My contention is that the second contraction which was severe should not have occurred. If you want to make your case you will have to use raw numbers for a lot of things were happening.

                    Policy was not absolutely optimal during the Roosevelt Administration. It very seldom is. Policy is made by human beings who make mistakes. Real output in 1933 was 26% lower than it had been in 1929. Real output in 1938 was 3.3% lower than it had been in 1937. The latter was regrettable, but a modest part of the overall economic trajectory.

                    The depression ended with the war, but before the war there was a deterioration in the poltical situation in Europe and gold flowed into the US. Causes and solutions are controversial as well as what actually brought us out of the depression. You seem to favor FDR’s economic policies more than I. I don’t think either of us can prove a strong case to favor one or the other.

                    By 1936, real output exceeded that of 1929. By 1939, real domestic product per capita exceeded the levels of 1929. By 1941, the trajectory of output per capita had returned to the long-term trend line. The Depression was well and truly over prior to the war. This is not controversial. It’s just that Amity Shlaes doesn’t read data tables.

                    1. Firstly I know your dislike of Amity Shlaes, and we have discussed that before but I think you have a rather restricted view of what is right and what is wrong. I think you get all hyped up over Amity Shlaes because you have a very narrow view of history. Her name with regard to the Great Depression wasn’t needed since I didn’t read her book on the Great Depression nor did I rely on what she has written. My guess is you didn’t read her book either, but if you did, kudos.

                      The depression started in 1929 so when you look at the comparisons of data, despite the fact that Hoover was President when it started, you have to look at the time span of the entire depression which lasted at least 10 years. One has to take into account growth that occurs over that time span so while I don’t completely disagree with the numbers I do disagree with how you portray them. FDR continued many of the policies of Hoover so many more conservative than you would choose to say that FDR policies extended from 1929. You may object and that is your right but you can’t say that some of FDR’s policies weren’t a simple augmentation of Hoover’s with additional policies. I don’t find the numbers you provide to prove your case over a 10 year period and then one has to consider why the dip when one have expected the recovery to continue on the same trajectory.

                      You seem to state a point as fact when it is disputed. Many feel that WW2 ended the depression but you neglect the economic forces in the years prior to WW2 where there was political instabiilty and gold was travelling westward to the U.S..

                      I’m not going to state that “You need to get the basic history right.” but I do think your response is rather shallow though I recognize it as a valid opinion.

                    2. FDR continued many of the policies of Hoover so many more conservative than you would choose to say that FDR policies extended from 1929.

                      FDR was adverse to companies reducing nominal wages, as was Hoover. As far as I can recall, their actions in this vein were merely hortatory, at least prior to 1938. There was a modest scheme set up during the Hoover years to manipulate commodity prices. The Reconstruction Finance Corporation, founded in 1932, continued under the new administration. Quite late in the Hoover Administration (March 1932), the Federal Reserve began open-market operations. That was the beginning of a more expansive monetary policy stance. Other than these items, there wasn’t much similarity between the two in policy responses.

                    3. “FDR was adverse to companies ”

                      Let’s add to the list: Jobs. Public works, think of when the Hoover Dam was started. FDR converted these projects into the FERA. The RFC that you mention had similarities to the Federal Farm Board also created by Hoover. Job programs and loans had a lot of similarities but maybe what you are thinking of is the hard turn from mild manipulation of the economy (prices) into an attempt to control it by setting prices and other things of that nature that didn’t work. On the other hand maybe the extreme difference is in the political relm where for one thing FDR tried to pack the court.

                      Then again we have to consider debt when we consider those numbers you hung your hat on and mentioned earlier. I didn’t bother with those numbers because without mentioning debt they appeared as a shallow and deceptive argument. Go into enough debt or spend enough on programs and one can end unemployment and show a marked increase in the GDP but that is not real and the debt has to be repaid.

                    4. I don’t find the numbers you provide to prove your case over a 10 year period and then one has to consider why the dip when one have expected the recovery to continue on the same trajectory.


                    5. Allen, governments undertake public works as a matter of course. That’s what they do.

                      The scale of public employment schemes in terms of expenditure and manpower was during the Roosevelt Administration vastly higher than it had been during the Hoover Administration.

                    6. “Allen, governments undertake public works as a matter of course. That’s what they do.”

                      Yes, but it is the nature of the public works and the quantity that differs. I think building the Hoover Dam at that time was smart.

                      “The scale of public employment schemes in terms of expenditure and manpower was during the Roosevelt Administration vastly higher than it had been during the Hoover Administration.”

                      Understandable as the depression was lasting longer and having a great effect on American citizens.

                    7. I didn’t bother with those numbers because without mentioning debt they appeared as a shallow and deceptive argument. Go into enough debt or spend enough on programs and one can end unemployment and show a marked increase in the GDP but that is not real and the debt has to be repaid.

                      A country is not a hardware store.

                      GDP measures aggregate production levels of all the enterprises in your economy, public and private. The goods and services in question are not fictional. You have since 1938 had business recessions from time to time which featured declines in production levels. Except for the reconversion recession (1945-47) and the most recent unpleasantness (2008-09), none of the recessions incorporated a decline in the (seasonally adjusted) rate of production that exceeded 2%. You’ve been waiting an awfully long time for the Roosevelt mirage to dissipate. Suggest you consider the possibility that you’ve misunderstood matters.

                      Federal debt levels in 1945 (120% of GDP) were quite extraordinary. However, over 60% of that debt had been incurred fighting the war. During the period running from 1933 to 1941, the Roosevelt Administration did engage in peacetime federal borrowing to an unprecedented degree, but during no fiscal year in that period did such borrowing exceed 4% of GDP. The federal debt on the eve of the war amounted to 52% of GDP and service costs that did not exceed 2.4% of GDP. It was manageable. Prior to 1981, only a negligible share of Treasury issues were held by foreigners, so this debt service amounted to an intramural income-transfer program.

                    8. “A country is not a hardware store.”

                      We agree.

                      “GDP measures…”

                      I have no problem with what GDP measures, but it is significantly influenced by the printing of money and debt. Your numbers alone meant little and therefore your conclusion solely based on those numbers was faulty.

                      “You’ve been waiting an awfully long time for the Roosevelt mirage to dissipate… you’ve misunderstood matters.”

                      I don’t understand what your point is (mirage) and your point as stated certainly doesn’t mean I misunderstood matters. It more likely means that your data points were incomplete as I have suggested.

                      ” However, over 60% of that debt had been incurred fighting the war.”

                      Right, but that doesn’t deal with the 40% debt that was huge at the time (I think the greatest debt since the Civil War) and that certainly changed the curves created by the data points. A lot more debt could go directly to the problem at that period of time. Today such debt would be greatly diffused and that too changes the picture.

                      I don’t worry about the debt FDR created if that is one of your points. Instead I worry about how you lack inclusion of the debt in your data points which significantly affects the conclusions we can draw.

                    9. I have no problem with what GDP measures, but it is significantly influenced by the printing of money and debt. Your numbers alone meant little and therefore your conclusion solely based on those numbers was faulty.

                      Allen, you’ve managed to contradict yourself in just one sentence while uttering crank nonsense. Production statistics do not have a ‘meaning’ which is contingent on federal debt loads. Production statistics are production statistics. Output and consumption levels in 1941 were what they were (notably better than they were in 1929). The significance of the federal debt load would be in the future share of tax revenue which had to be devoted to debt service. What that amounts to is a transfer of income from taxpayers to bondholders. That’s all. You’ve got this idea in your head that the economy as a whole is like a household running up credit card debt. It isn’t. In 1941, the ‘debtors’ and the ‘creditors’ were ultimately the same body of people.

                      The pacing of economic growth within a particular business cycle is influenced by fiscal and monetary policy, but economic development over time is a function of technological innovation and refinements in the division of labor. The ‘effect’ of fiscal and monetary policy on production levels is manifest within short spans of time (and, in most circumstances, stokes or retards production by a percentage point or two, no more). That having been said, production is production and consumption is consumption, whether the economy is being stimulated or not.

                    10. “crank nonsense.”

                      Crank nonsense? In other words you believe that if the government borrowed $5 Trillion and gave it to all Americans to spend that that wouldn’t change the GDP. OK. You can believe what you want.

                      You are talking nonsense. I was talking about the economy in general and you want to limit it to your specific metric which by itself is an innaccurate measure of the economy or the wellbeing of citizens. It is as if you used the stock market as your metric. People could be starving while the stock market hit new highs daily. To you that may mean a good economy. To me that is crank nonsense.

                      DSS It sounds as if your solution to all economic problems is to borrow and print money.

                    11. Right, but that doesn’t deal with the 40% debt that was huge at the time

                      No, not particularly. Central government debt loads of that magnitude are sustainable over the long-haul.

                    12. “Central government debt loads of that magnitude are sustainable over the long-haul.”

                      That may be true, DSS, but it can make the economy look better than it actually is.

                  2. You seem to favor FDR’s economic policies more than I.

                    Whether I do or I don’t is immaterial. You need to get the basic history right. Output levels, per capita income, consumption levels, employment levels. People talk rot on this subject because they do not know these data points.

            2. easy answer peter.

              a) cut taxes more

              b) standard fiscal stimulus: borrow another trillion and actually spend it on something useful infrastructure like safer roads and bridges and airports and yes a decent border wall that could have been half paid for already given them money wasted 3 billion in the pelosi shutdown

              c) Federal Reserve can stop raising rates now for starters and could even reduce them a wee bit if the recession materializes. but not much room in that.

              d) the debt is a problem but we are already in an ahistorical situation with respect to the size of American debt so these are and have long been uncharted waters in that respect nothing has much changed.

              A lot of the current problems are systemic and have nothing to do with Mr Trump that’s for sure. Nor Obama before him. Mostly this rests on Congress and it’s a legacy of bipartisan incompetence spanning decades. And yet, we have the biggest economic and military empire in all history, so let’s not get too frazzled over it.



    According to the Monthly Treasury Statement for fiscal 2018, the year that just ended Sept. 30, the deficit was $779 billion — a $113 billion, 17 percent increase over the$666 billion deficit recorded last year.

    This was the biggest one-year increase in the deficit since 2009, when the Great Recession wreaked havoc on federal finances. At 3.9 percent, it was the largest deficit compared with gross domestic product since 2013.

    The bottom line 2018 deficit number is significant because it occurred during good economic times, when the federal deficit typically falls rather than spikes. But that’s not the most important story. A simple analysis of what Treasury reported shows that virtually the entire deficit increase was because the tax cut enacted in December reduced revenues substantially.

    Treasury said revenues grew from 2017 to 2018 by slightly less than $14 billion. Given the federal government’s overall $113 billion deficit increase, you might assume that the deficit rose because spending was $127 billion higher.

    Overall federal outlays did increase by $127 billion compared with what was actually spent in 2017, but that’s the wrong comparison. The right comparison is the total tax revenue the government would have collected under the old tax law versus the new one.

    The Congressional Budget Office estimated fiscal 2018 revenue would be $3.5 trillion under the laws that were in place before President Donald Trump signed the GOP tax cut bill. The actual amount Treasury reported Monday was $202 billion less. That $202 billion would have more than covered the $127 billion in extra spending in 2018.

    This comparison, to tax revenues that were expected had the laws stayed the same, unambiguously shows that virtually all of the federal deficit increase that occurred from 2017 to 2018 was because of the new cuts in corporate and individual taxes. Had the tax changes not been enacted, the federal deficit in 2018 would have dropped to well below $600 billion, rather than rising to close to $800 billion.

    Four things about this are most troubling. First, both Treasury and CBO expect the deficit to keep spiking. Compared with the CBO pre-tax bill baseline, 2019 revenues will be $263 billion below what they would have been if rates had stayed the same. Treasury’s projected 2019 deficit would be just above $800 billion rather than close to $1.1 trillion.

    Unlike the recession-caused trillion dollar federal deficits of the Obama years that fell precipitously when the economy improved, these deficits are the result of permanent changes in federal revenues caused by the tax law. Not only does this put the constantly promised-but-never-achieved goal of balancing the federal budget in 10 years out of reach, it makes even the projection of a balanced budget into the political equivalent of a practical joke or a hoax.

    Edited from: “The Federal Budget Deficit Is Soaring, And You Can Blame It All On Republican Tax Cuts”

    USA TODAY, 10/16/18

    1. RE: ABOVE:

      Paragraph 2 tells us this was the biggest jump in deficit spending since the Great Recession in 2009. How bizarre..!!

      Historically good times were used to PAY-DOWN debts and deficits. But Trump and the Republicans have squandered the current expansion. Their tax cut actually ‘surged’ the deficit as though the economy was in recession.

      And ‘where’ did that tax cut go..?? Into the pockets of the wealthiest individuals and corporations. The Trump Tax Cut was so mindless that Republicans were told by pollsters not to even mention it during last fall’s midterm election season.

      In fact, one of the reasons Trump focused on border security during the midterm campaign season was ‘because’ his tax cut failed to impress the average working Joe. Said tax cut was a resounding failure for everyone except the wealthiest.

      Had the Trump Tax Cut been honestly promoted it should have known as: “The Koch Bros Kickback Plan For Supporting Republicans”

      1. the fact is that Democrats consistently, across decades, support both excessive social spending AND also excessive military spending, across the board. I am not sure Republicans are much better.

      2. And ‘where’ did that tax cut go..?? Into the pockets of the wealthiest individuals and corporations.
        Yeah, DARN those selfish meanies in corporate America like Amazon, Walmart and McDonalds who provide over 2 million jobs that can lead to a career to those who need to work to eat and keep their kids warm because they don’t qualify for the Big Gov Tit Sucking Parasite Plan and the desparate and marginally employable not to mention those jobs of their assorted contractors. Don’t they know the $113 billion increase is already short of the $116 billion needed to fund Pelosis illegals lifestyles and the tens of thousands more are on the way? If you factor in the billions more needed for the impact of incarcerating illegals for crimes they commit and fighting all the crime committed by illegals to try to keep American Citizens safe………Oh wait, never mind. Scratch that keeping Americans safe sh!t. It’s not in Pelosis budget or even on her radar. As a matter of fact any day now the Democrat bill designating wanting not to die at the hands of “Democrat voters” a hate crime, should reach the House Floor.

        1. Dawn, this sounds like what’s known as a “general rant”.

          General rants are basically political diatribes with no cohesive theme. Instead the writer, or speaker, seeks to marshall disconnected talking points to create the appearance of a forceful harangue.

          One can compare general rants to dull claps of thunder. Sometimes when the sky threatens rain we might hear a dull clap of thunder. But said claps don’t necessarily indicate the onset of a storm. In fact, the sky might actually clear moments later.

          General rants only connect with people sharing the exact political views. People accustomed to hearing certain talking points echoed repeatedly might recognize bits and pieces of a general rant. This recognition is like hearing a medley of old show tunes, for instance.

          But unless the reader or listener instantly connects with the medley, general rants fall flat. Instead they just burp like dull claps of thunder.

          1. Well then ranting certainly qualifies me as one of the “average Joes” Democrats use in their poll based governing to dictate policy. This is comforting because rants trump actual reality based needs everytime when Democrats priortize the budget, their bills and party playform. All I have to do is out hate and spew more venom advocating violence against American Citizens and the implosion of the country louder with my disconnected talking points to create the appearance of a forceful harangue than Pelosi, Schumer, AOC and Warren and I can be assured that Democrats will take notice and find a way to float me free taxpayer money too. Maybe I should see if there are openings at CNN. Better yet, maybe could use my new found free taxpayer funded money to run for Congress.


        1. Tom, explain how Obama was responsible for the wave of retiring Baby Boomers that began in 2011.

          Just to review, Baby Boomers are the generation born between 1946-1962. And they began retiring in 2011. Those retirements had been projected decades earlier. So explain how those retirements had nothing to do with surging Social Security and Medicare expenses during the Obama years.

          Was it Obama’s fault that Boomers started retiring in 2011..?? And shouldn’t Bush have taken those retirements into account ‘before’ cutting taxes on the eve of invading Iraq..??

          1. I don’t pretend that anyone can explain anything to Peter Hill.
            If someone wants to take one or two factors… the baby boom wave…..or the Iraq War….and pretend that these are the only two factors, fine.
            I can be as dedicated to the truth, the half-truth, and nothing but half-truths as Peter Shill.
            The dotcom bubble burst in March 2000; ten months before Bush took office.
            The speculative mania of the 1990s helped to artificially boost the economy and tax revenues.
            The other side of speculative bubbles is not as pleasant.
            The long expansion of ( primarily) the 1990s was nearing an end as Bush took office.
            There was, additionally, the real economic impact of 9-11 that hit less than 8 months after Bush took office.
            Of course a larger wave of retiring baby boomers will result in SS and Medicare spending increases at an even faster rate. It’s not as if that spending were static prior to 2011, or that the increase in SS spending is a significant part of the $10 Trillion of additional debt since 2011.
            The jump in MediCaid enrollees from 50,000,000 to over 70,000,000 is largely attributable to eligibility changes under ObamaCare.
            Additional funding of that program has an impact on the budget, and I hope no one pulls out the lame, idiotic “Republican obstruction” canard again.
            Both of other two major entitlement/ welfare programs….Social Security and MediCare…. have eaten up a larger and larger percentage of the budget for decades, and the expected increase in the number of SS enrollees accounts for a part, but only a part, of the $10 Trillion in additional debt stacked on during the Obama years.
            I’m sure this is a mere “oversight”😒 in the multiple HHHNN articles posted here, but I haven’t seen Peter Hill even mention the factors I’ve pointed out here.
            The factors that he “likes” will be trumpeted in capital letters. If anyone thinks that his “analysis” is a good faith effort to actually analysize budget/ deficit/ debt issues, they are extremely naive.
            None of what he has written really tries to deal with the set of issues involved in the $5 Trillion “Bush Debt” or the $10 Trillion “Obama Debt”.
            I don’t think he mentioned the $ 10 Trillion debt, but I may have missed it if he did.
            On the revenue side, the tax cuts of both the Bush years and the Obama years did contribute to the deficits of those years .
            If you distribute a “tax rebate” to everyone, give a “tax credit” of $10,000 for buying a house, or green energy tax credits, or cash for clunkers credits, these are not as straightforward as cuts in tax rates.
            But they do lessen tax revenues, and they do cost the Treasury money.

            1. Tom, the economic trends of the 1990’s were more just a “speculative mania”.

              The end of the Cold War created the so-called “peacetime dividend’. With the Soviet Union finally neutralized, investors were feeling very bullish. Our triumph in Desert Storm created a decade of historically low oil prices. Those low oil prices kept inflation low which kept interest rates low.

              But the 1990’s were also boom years for high-tech industries. Those industries transformed our economy in a number of ways that made business more productive and generated reams of wealth.

              ‘Yes’, there was a speculative bubble regarding phantom Dot.Coms. And that bubble busted in February of 2000. But if you go back and look, the bust mainly effected the Nasdaq market. The NYSE was relatively undisturbed. Therefore unemployment was still fairly low Bush took office.

              9/11 was indeed a shocker to the economy. But recovery was fairly quick. By the end of 2001, the travel and hospitality industries had largely recovered. The real economic threat that year came in December with the collapse of Enron. in the months that followed, several more Enron’s revealed themselves in a cycle known as “The Accounting Crisis” .

              The Accounting Crisis would have been an ideal moment to re-examine the rush to deregulate various industries (especially financial services). Sadly the Bushies let that opportunity pass. Republican donors wanted to stay the course on deregulation. So Wall Street went on its merry way until the Great Recession hit.

              1. wrong, a major trend that spends a decade is not just speculative mania

                the 90s saw massive increases in productivity and efficiency in production and management and many aspects of business enterprise just from information technology alone

                get a grip my good fellow!

                1. Kurtz, it was Tom who describe the 90’s a just a “speculative mania”. Like he never heard of Silicon Valley.

              2. The extreme valuations placed on stocks…..not just dotcom stock, the “best” example….but ALL stocks, far exceeded any previous period of overvaluation.
                The collapse of the stock market was hardly a minor issue.
                And it was hardly a “NASDAQ issue; if you don’t believe me, take a look at what happened to the other indices; the S&P 500, the DJIA, or the Wilshire 5000.
                That includes the 1920s. It’s true that one if the very favorable tailwinds benefiting the Clinton Administration was the dramatic downsizing of the military and the reining in of defense spending.
                Those planned reductions were already being implemented before Clinton took office.

                1. value is just what a willing buyer and seller agree. overvalued is all a matter of perspective. it’s never “overvalued” until the selling shock sets in. and it’s never “undervalued” until buyers go on the hut for cheapies en masse

                  that is not to say that it’s not a good question what distortional effects in stock market valuations may be in effect at any time. but the ones we should worry about are what’s happening now like program trading and all that microseconds computer aided trading jive.

                  once you add increases in AI to this mix who knows where it will all end up

                  90s, don’t worry about them right now worry about what’s under our noses

                  1. Mr Kurtz,…
                    I don’t know if you are familiar with measurements of valuation like P-Es, book value, price-to-book, price-to-sales, etc.
                    But let’s look at a comparable example outside of the stock market.
                    You’ve won $1,000,000 in the lottery ( after taxes), and you want to buy an existing business.
                    One business generates a positive cash flow of over $100,000 per year.
                    Another business stratches out $10,000 per year in cash flow.
                    They both have similar “book value”; i.e., the value of the inventory, land, building ( I’m assuming ownership in this example, not leases).
                    They both have a similar percentage in growth rates. At a 10% growth rate, the first business is adding another $10,000 + per year in additional cash flow, and the other business c.$1,000 additional cash flow.
                    Which business is more reasonably priced at the $1,000,000 asking price?
                    If you as a “willing buyer” and the seller agree, and you buy the first business for $1,000,000, is a buyer of the second business getting the same value for his $1,000,000 purchase?
                    There are far more tangible and sensible ways of determining actual value than just the price at which a willing buyer and seller meet, and valuation us far more than “a matter of perspective”.
                    That mentality feeds, and relies on, the “greater fool theory” or a Dutch Tulip Mania mentality.
                    Since I’m not assuming that people know about P-Es, etc. I’m using this example as an illustration of what happened in the stock market in the mid-to-late 1990s.
                    While there is the “sentiment factor” that is a variable element in determining valuation, many investors…..often novice investors…..believed that the “old rules”, the more tangible methods of determining actual value, were out the window because of the so-called “new paradigm” of investing.
                    I’m not “worried” about the 1990s, but in a review of recent economic history, it’s unavoidable that the speculative binge of the market in that time frame comes up.

            2. It takes a lot more time and effort to untangle a set of distortions than it does to keep spitting them out.
              I don’t have unlimited patience with playing that game, but let’s take a look at one of Peter Hill’s pet claims, and pet excuses, for the $10 Trillion of additional debt stacked on during the Obama Administration.
              He has repeated cited the increased number of baby boomers retiring after 2010-2011 as a major cause of the $10 Trillion “Obama debt”.
              It’s easy to make and repeat a claim that is false, and that stunt has become common as dirt with some who comment in these threads.
              Untangling these bogus claims is a bit more involved, but here goes:
              During the 8 years of Bush 43, Social Security spending increased by roughly $200 Billion, from $400 Billion to $600 Billion.
              During the same period, MediCare spending went from $200 Billion to $300 Billion.
              So the increased SS and MC rolls and spending resulted in an additional $300 Billion of spending on these programs during the Bush years.
              We can conceivably hold that $300 Billion as part of the $5 Trillion in added “Bush debt”.
              During the Obama years, the SS spending went up from $600 Billion to $1 Trillion.
              MC spending increased from $400 Billion to $700 Billion.
              So we can conceivably hold that $700 Billion increase in SS and MC spending as part of the $10 Trillion Obama debt.
              At best, we can “excuse” about 6% in the “Bush debt” as inevitable, automatic growth of spending on those programs.
              At best, we can “excuse” about 7% of the “Obama debt” the same way.
              The “wave of baby boomers” that accelerated during the Obama Administration can be cited as a relatively small factor in causing the $10 Trillion “Obama debt”, but it is nowhere near as big of a factor as claimed.
              If Trump ran up $15 Trillion in total debt over an 8 year administration, would Peter and others try to claim that it was an even larger wave of baby boomers that was largely responsible for that debt?

              1. Tom the adage is “a liar can make up ten new lies in the time it takes to refute one”

                So you see certain folks on here never reply, only keep on moving with their talking points, blanketing the comments with fresh propaganda

                it’s clever but disingenuous

              2. Then Tom, tell us what the big driver was of all that increased debt during the Obama years. I don’t see that explanation anywhere.

                Somehow you just presume Obama spent like a maniac. Never mind that Republicans largely controlled Congress through most of the Obama years. You just want us to believe that ‘liberal’ Obama spent big on ‘freebies for the poor”. No explanation of why Republicans approved that spending.

                1. You evidently forgot what I said about the responsibilty of both branches ( Executive and Legislative) and both parties.
                  If you need to rely on a highly selective memory to distort the position of others, I guess you just can’t help yourself.
                  There was a combination of lower tax receipts ( in the first couple of years of the Obama Administration) and Stimulus Packages which dramatically increased spending.
                  The entitlement/ welfare programs are the 800 pound gorillas in any budget discussion, and were not exclusive or terribly unique to the Obama Adm.
                  The basic issue of how revenue-minus spending can= deficits is not terribly complex.

              3. G.W. Bush
                Started Presidency: $5.77 trillion
                Ended Presidency: $11.1 trillion
                Increased 93% or 8.5% per year

                Started Presidency: $11.1 trillion
                Ended Presidency: $19.85 trillion
                Increased 78% or 7.5% per year

                Source: Federal Reserve Bank of Saint Louis

      4. you’re really intent on blaming Trump for everything. i just hope, for your sake, in your own head that you aren’t that silly

    2. T”he right comparison is the total tax revenue the government would have collected under the old tax law versus the new one.”

      That is a phony comparison from a phony Shill. The tax plan that reduced the corporate tax increased corporate revenues. Now these phonies are calculating how much tax would have been received under the old corporate tax and then saying the difference between the two is a loss. Ridiculous!

      In other words if you earned $100 and were taxed 20% you would pay $20.

      Under the new tax of 10% you may earn $ 1,000 and be taxed $100.

      According to the phonies despite the fact that revenues increased by $80 they want to compare what would have been the revenue at 20% and they say it would be $200 and therefore the government lost $120. But at 20% only $20 would have actually been paid in tax. These phonies fudge their numbers all the time to make things appear different than they really are and they depend upon ignorant, uneducated fools like Peter Shill.

      1. Alan, show us a recent article from a mainstream financial journal that show tax revenue were ‘up’ in 2018.

        1. Peter, you mean you want me to find a spin article. You can run the exact numbers. I don’t know exactly how they turn out but they don’t do calculations like the one’s you quoted that were phony.

          I have provided you data over and over again at which time you run away. Why should I waste my time now. By the way, I don’t go to the MSM opinion columns writted by writers that have almost zero understanding of economics. You do because compared to you they shine.

          Lets get back to where you have to put some work in rather than relying other people’s work product which is probably why you are at such a low level today. You pick the shows and the times to prove how bad Fox News really is. You have said how innaccurate Fox News is on a continuous basis. After we both have the videos we can discuss that news and see who is right. Of course there is no doubt that you are wrong because you are wrong about almost everything. Even those on your side recognize you as a PUTZ.

          1. Alan, the truth is that the best financial journals haven’t published stories praising Trump’s tax cuts for increased Treasury revenues. Because it never happened! ..That’s the reason Alan..! If you can’t find any mainstream media stories to confirm your assertion, there’s a reason why.

            1. My reference had to do with corporate tax cuts, not the cuts provided to individuals. You don’t have the slightest idea of the components of the tax cut. I certainly don’t agree with everything in that tax cut or the way we do these things, but smart people have to deal with the Peter’s of the world that are hacks. My concern revolves around getting the country moving in the right direction. I don’t think the personal income tax changes helped to spur the economy much if at all. I do think that lumping a lot of tax deductions together and providing a max tax cut was wise in the long term even though that caused me to pay a lot more in taxes. I don’t like the idea that people were completely exempted from taxes though I don’t like the idea of working families being put in a bad position. That the corporate tax and the reduction of rules and regulations increased employment and salaries meant the government had to spend less on food stamps and other entitlements while perhaps receiving more in revenue from these lower income folk. In the long and short run the bill helped to spur the economy.

              You can go back to your sites where non economists or political hacks write on the subject but most economists will grant that what I have said is reasonable even if they personally disagree.

          2. Tax revenues were up in 2018, but only slightly.
            It may have been something like $3.47 Trillion in 2017 v. $3.5 Trillion in 2018.
            There was an increase, but it was not a significant increase.

            1. Tom, there are too many variables and if one picks and chooses one can find a number that satisfies their point of view which is meaningless. Enough said. Tax revenues went up a bit despite the cut in corporate taxes. The economy did real well. Those two things are enough to provide a reasonable though not final conclusion that is positive. The increase in corporate tax revenues seems to have about covered its own costs. The numbers Peter’s post was using were phony numbers to obtain phony results just like Peter. He is a phony.

          1. Peter asked for references and Mr. Kurtz provided them. After asking and receiving Peter now runs away so what is the point of finding what he asked?

            Peter is a phony. I’m waiting for him to make good on the proof that Fox News lies but he ran away from the idea of proving it. I’d be glad to tape as many shows as he would like and then discuss the lies he says they make but he is a phony and can’t defend the arguments other people have placed in his mouth.

            1. Peter always runs away and that is why I no longer spend time providing him proof. I should have, however, thanked Kurtz for doing so.

  4. “Also, the per-capita national debt should be about the same as the median annual household income before taxes ”

    Median houshold income around $60,000
    Number of households around 130 million
    National debt around $22 trillion
    Federal revenues around $3.5 trillion

    Diane, why don’t you run the numbers. Remember that our total debt includes entitlements unless the government chooses to wipe them out which is totally legal. That would mean an end to social security, Medicare, etc. The cost of those entitlements are increasing on a yearly basis. Likely if acturarily calculated what we owe today in entitlements and the national debt exceeds your limits, Without changes in fiscal policy we can expect the national debt including entitlements to continue to climb as both components climb.

    Why don’t you explain your policy recommendations.

    [DSS is an actuary so he can correct any of my numbers or assumptions. Alternatively he can put these numbers into a better form.]

    1. Liability is not the same thing as debt. And you know it. And you don’t care about pretending to the contrary. Because you don’t want to admit that what you’re really talking about, now, is theft.

        1. It’s not clear what she means.
          The surplus from the Social Security tax hike ( a bipartisan agreement in the mid-1980s) amounted to c.$3 Trillion.
          Meaning that at one point, c.

          2015, SS had taken in $3 Trillion more than it had paid put over a c. 30 year period.
          That $3 Trillion SS surplus was borrowed by the Treasury and spent on non-SS expenses.
          E.G., if the goverment collected $2 Trillion in a given year from income taxes, and $500 Billion in surplus Social Security taxes, that $2.5 Trillion was ALL treated (and spent) as government tax revenue.
          In turn, Treasury issued government bonds……essentially government IOUs… “replace” the SS surplus borrowed by the U.S. Treasury.
          Some published figures exclude the money that Treasury owes SS as part of total U.S. debt when presenting U.S. debt numbers.
          ( none of these figures are going to be exact….I’m not going to back out of this and go to a source to get those “exact” amounts).
          If the U.S. Treasury plans to default on its Treasury obligations (or partially default) by not repaying the borrowed SS surplus funds, you can “get” the total U.S. debt down to under $20 Trillion.
          Realistically, that debt to SS should be included in total U.S. debt numbers, so a more honest number is c. $21 Trillion.

        2. Diane the national debt is the amount the US government has to legally pay back.

          The entitlement debts do not have to be paid back by law. In fact tomorrow the government could shut down everyone’s Medicare and Social Security without paying a dime. Actuarily speaking today that debt is many multiples of the national debt and is growing.

      1. “Liability is not the same thing as debt. ”

        As I said we have two types of debt, one that has to be paid back by law and one that is many multiples of the former that doesn’t have to be legally paid back. (On occasion we have reduced some of those payments by “steeling” from citizens but eventually we have to recon with the costs and the programs in a larger scale) Not paying that back can be called theft just like when government taxes taxpayers for things government should not be doing. Stalin believed in theft and used that to pay off some of his debts along with paying for government and keeping him in power.

        Somewhere along the line you have to recognize that the second type of debt we face is due to a sham and all that is being done is increasing that debt until the time when todays politicians are out of office and many of us are dead. In other words we are stealing from our children something your type of thinking promotes.

      2. #2″Liability is not the same thing as debt. ”

        Take note how you didn’t answer the question after approximate numbers were provided. That is how one doesn’t improve their thinking processes rather continues with the same trashy ones.

        “Median houshold income around $60,000
        Number of households around 130 million
        National debt around $22 trillion
        Federal revenues around $3.5 trillion”

        Run the numbers and then speak don’t continue to pretend to correct another as a ruse to get out of answering the questions. You will skip dealing with reality and go right right back to your fantassies.

    2. Social Security is a pension plan that was hijacked to provide lifetime income to alcoholics and junkies to stay addicted. That they need to put back in the lockbox. However if the pension plans are going to be included then it is only fair the multimillion dollar pension plans of ALL government union parasites should be abolished too.

        1. H.R.1218 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)

          Introduced in House (02/24/2017)

          Social Security and Medicare Lock-Box Act

          This bill establishes: (1) in the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund, a Social Security Surplus Protection Account; and (2) in the Federal Hospital Insurance Trust Fund, a Medicare Surplus Protection Account.

          The Managing Trustee of each trust fund (in both cases, the Secretary of the Treasury): (1) must transfer the annual surplus of the trust fund to its respective account; and (2) may not invest the balance in the account until a law takes effect that authorizes, for amounts in the trust fund, an investment vehicle other than U.S. obligations.

          The bill establishes in the executive branch a commission to study the most effective vehicles for investment of the trust funds, other than investments in the form of U.S. obligations.

  5. “I am a fiscal conservative and social liberal”

    I believe people should be free to do whatever they can afford.

  6. Harry Truman once reminisced that when he was sworn in as a Senator, he said to himself, “I can’t believe I got here”. After six months, he says to himself, “I can’t believe they got here. The people who so dismayed Truman nevertheless managed to effect a rapid demobilization after 1945 and balance the budget in a couple of years. In spite of the slack production, FDR was able to manage at least one balanced budget between 1933 and 1941. Lyndon Johnson, free spending caudillo extraordinare, turned in a balanced budget for the fiscal year ending 30 June 1969.

    The responsible parties would be the Congressional leadership, for the most part. (Mr. Trump’s two most recent predecessors were no help when they weren’t instigators of trouble). McConnell’s led the Republican Senate Caucus for 12 years and Nancy Pelosi’s led the House Democratic caucus for 15 years. Put on a pair of steel-toed boots and stomp on their faces. Again and again and again.

  7. My bet David is that you weren’t moderated but the computer program from WordPress caused you to be put on hold. When that happens to me I add a “.” after my name and temporarily change my address so that I cover both possible bases. I then recopy what was not posted with an explanation before the post so that the machine sees the new words and recognizes it as a new post from a new individual with a new address.

  8. David, is this what you did when you were teaching? You walk in a room and the first thing you say is “test”.

  9. The debt and our lack of fiscal responsibility is so much more important than the made up conspiracy charges against Trump which will not lead to his impeachment or anything else. What it has led to is the ability of Congress to sidestep from the issue of debt onto something else. Congress is not doing its job.

    Congress has to be put in the place of ordinary citizens. When the government closed down Congress should not have gone on vacation. When the government doesn’t pass a budget Congress should cease getting its salary and perks. When something like Obamacare is passed Congress should be placed in the same position as the worst affected American.

    We have created a new class of American, the politically endowed. We need term limits and we need a public that recognizes politics has become a ballgame where one roots for the home team instead of pushing both teams to move the nation forward.

  10. I have a great plan to repair the nation Jonathan, rid the debt overnight and drain the swamp. It starts with a RICO lawsuit against those who stole TRILLIONS from we the PEOPLE, those who aided and abetted by failing to do their jobs as government officials by arresting and prosecuting the crimes and most importantly failing to recover the TRILLIONS back for the PEOPLE. I would include the lawyers and judges that participated, including you Jon who failed to report or misreported with intent the crimes, acting as shills instead of defenders of the PEOPLE by demanding accountability. Then I would get a jury of the PEOPLE and give these criminals all fair trials and those found guilty of this TREASON and these ECONOMIC WAR CRIMES, well then off with their heads. Now once dismembered I would then seize all their assets including the Trillions offshore and kids trust funds etc and REDISTRIBUTE back to WE THE PEOPLE . For corp criminals involved seize their companies ill gotten assets. We as country will fair fine with less big banks and bankers.
    Our government has been corrupted to the core and the people are figuring it all out and better this solution than ANGRY MOBS with pitchforks just killing them all and taking it back which the whispers grow louder. I thought Jon you were fiscally conservative and a lawyer with integrity hahaha oxymorons but you are neither, so see ya on Fox pedaling your fame, oops I mean shame. As always guillotines free @

    Eliot Bernstein

    1. Wonderful plan, especially if you add going after Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, Google, CNN, Universities teaching courses on refining the use of mob violence to target and exterminate Whitey and Christians more effectively, Democrat apparatchiks calling for riots and the murder law enforcement officers and conservatives in every city and all the other tools Democrats are using to dismantle and replace the Constitution, Cloward and Piven the country and obstruct and violate American Citizens Rights in order to “teach them the lesson” of who rules and who serves. It should be quite a haul. Even if the suits are not won or it doesn’t pay down the debt completely, answering 100 million lawsuits will certainly put a crimp in Facebook and Googles World Domination Style.

    2. I normally like talk about guillotines and such but I don’t follow how Jonathan Turley had a single darn thing to do with any of that. Try and be more coherent next time please.

      Also if you are going to be bringing the guillotines then you will not be able to get to that phase via RICO suits it will take a lot more direct action than that.

  11. Not sure why why adding 1 trillion in debt is bad but adding 32 trillion for free for all government run healthcare ( $500 per aspirin) and ?? trillions for free education for all to secure nonexistent jobs is good, but I’m sure it makes sense to the Democrat mind. After all if you use the Democrat Ocasio-Cortez/Warren economic formula of:
    2.7 trillion seized from billionaires + magic unicorn money ÷ believe in the dream and sprinkle it with pink glitter to ward off reality = “just pay for it,”
    the whole thing will totally like umm definitely work out like ummm in the end ya know ‘cuz like ummm Alex ya know said so during her her her umm skin care and make up tips Instagram thingy thing.

  12. Penalty box is an apt description. But I think we need to get on topic while were out of the box.

    Did you notice Turley complaining about spending increases while neglecting to mention tax cuts?

    If you didn’t know better, you’d think that nobody ever offered tax cuts to entice voters.

    Some politicians still promise spending cuts to entice voters.

    1. I enjoy reading these in-depth policy recommendations.
      A three-word slogan is a wonderful substitute for actual knowledge or serious policy discussion, so why waste time going beyond the slogans?

      1. When the economy is doing poorly, you should run a deficit.
        When the economy is doing well, you should run a surplus.
        Cutting taxes while increasing spending is a fine way to run a deficit.
        Raising taxes while cutting spending is a fine way to run a surplus.
        If the economy is on an even keel, go ahead on and balance the budget.
        These in-depth policy recommendations are common knowledge.

        1. Duh! Little details and minor issues like : A.-where you rein in spending increases, B.-increased tax rates and who they target and where they kick in, C.- how much additional revenue is realistically expected, D. what is done with those additional revenues, etc. etc.
          Three word slogans and/or a few paragraphs erase any need to “get real” or get serious about issues A through D.

          1. Dr. Benson’s three word slogan was amphibolous. Look it up. The word curb appeal can be taken two ways in the context of courting voters. As such, the slogan “soak the rich” will garner votes from some people and repel others. It’s not immediately clear which interpretation Dr. Benson had in mind.

        2. “If the economy is on an even keel, go ahead on and balance the budget.”

          Does that mean raise taxes or control government spending, Diane? If the economy is on keel then revenues should match expenditures. If taxation is used then eventually a point occurs where taxation offers no benefit and you are back with the problem and less leeway to manage it.

          1. If you want gradually to reduce the national debt, then you’ll have to run surpluses for a great many years to come. And that would require raising taxes to some unknown point that is “feasible” while cutting spending to some unknown point that is “feasible.” Chances are that those “feasible points” are unknown because the economy is a moving target that refuses to hold still.

            Therefore, we should run deficits when the economy is in recession and surpluses when the economy booms. And that means cutting taxes while increasing spending when the economy is in recession and raising taxes while cutting spending when the economy booms.

            1. “If you want gradually to reduce…”

              Diane, despite what you think of your economic acumen, your entire post is virtually meaningless and without recognition of the factors that go into making or breaking an economy.

              Venezuela used this type of vacuous thinking and now is paying the price.

          2. nice try and keynsian excuse making …

            a country should not raise any taxes as a matter of course just because the economy is booming. that’s like saying you should try and get sick when you are healthy.

            to the individual who makes the money, taxes are a penalty
            penalize something and you get less of it
            like income earning work, duh!

            there are some types of taxes that have less pronounced effect like excise taxes but they can retard production as well and obviously are used to do exactly that in some cases.

            but only common sense would tell you such things and people who misunderstand keynsian macro take it as an excuse to justify their confiscatory mentality

      2. Also, the per-capita national debt should be about the same as the median annual household income before taxes–ballpark.

        1. For the year 2017, median household income rose 1.8 percent to an all-time high of $61,372, the U.S. Census Bureau said, as the West and Midwest notched the strongest gains. That followed advances of 5.2 percent in 2015 and 3.2 percent in 2016.

    2. “Penalty box is an apt description”

      Diane, blaming moderation is a bit paranoid but possible. Why do people blame an individual instead of a program that is known to cause these problems.

      The left loves to place blame on others and they are so used to restricting free speech they think everyone does it.

      1. Oh! Oblivious one. Take a look and see if you can find any of the comments posted by Dr. David B. Benson yesterday on this thread. Then come back and prate about paranoia or leftist blame-placing or . . whatever.

        1. You don’t know why David didn’t post. There are many possible reasons. 1) He was censored by a human. 2) He was blocked by a computer program. 3) He didn’t have time to post.

          Diane, that you automatically decide it has to be human censorship tells us you are paranoid.

  13. A lot of people in America cannot pronounce the word “fiscal”. They say “physical”. Our nation is on a path not unlike Venezualia. Ike warned us to beware of the Military Industrial Complex when he left office. The Military Industrial Complex consumes us. We have been in Afghanistan for 16 years. Once we hurried on down to Vietnam it never stopped. Build a wall. Spend money on that. Stop spending money on food stamp credit cards for dumbos. Make the country great again. Put Pelosi in a fiscal jacket and shut her up.

    1. Liberty 2nd,…
      When Ike said that, defense spending ( peacetime defense spending) was probably about 50% of total federal spending.
      As entitlement/ social welfare spending exploded, the defense spending portion of the overall budget shrank dramatically.
      It’s about 15% of the budget currently.
      While it’s popular to point to defense spending as THE major deficit/debt driver, even a quick look at the federal budget shows that isn’t the case.

  14. Fiscal hawks are a dying breed and may become extinct.
    There is simply no effective advocacy for fiscal restraint.
    About 8-10 years ago the Simpson-Bowles commission presented a set of recommendations and reforms to deal with the the deficit/debt issues.
    It didn’t take long for almost all members of Congress, and the Executive branch, to run away from the recommendations of the Simpson-Bowles commission.
    I don’t think even one of their recommendations was enacted, or even seriously considered by Congess or the president.
    Regardless of which party is in control of the White House, the Senate, or the House, I can’t see any serious effort in the coming years to address the deficit/debt issue

    1. “There is simply no effective advocacy for fiscal restraint.”

      I disagree. It’s called ‘tax relief’ and it doesn’t hurt that when people pay taxes they get something in return besides grief and slavish treatment from the politically entitled……

      1. There we go; finally, a serious “proposal”😒😉😁 from BeckaG.
        She solves the grief and slavery issues as well.

          1. “A fiscal conservative ought properly to have opposed Trump’s tax cuts.”

            A fiscal conservative would recognize that Trump’s tax cuts benefitted the nation tremendously even though they weren’t carried out exactly as planned. A fiscal conservative recognizes that a budget must be balanced and the only way to do that long term is to reduce spending. The government needs money. The only question is how much. The leaner the government is the better it functions.

            Is the tax system perfect? Absolutely not and changes large and small could be made. However, no matter the changes government spending has to be reduced because the taxes required to maintain our ever increasing size of government slows the engine of growth down to a point that increased taxation can cause slowdowns in the economy and loss of revenue.

        1. Tom, actually in retrospect if one reads deeper into what Becka is saying one might recall the statement: “no taxation without representation”. Her statement isn’t clear enough but she may be on to something.

          Let’s review the Declaration of Independence and its grievances. I am being very serious when I say this.

      2. Hmm. this sounds like a fiscal conservative who is too busy watching the ballgame and rooting for the home team to pay attention to the checkbook.

        1. I’m pretty sure that Becka G was being sarcastic. She put single quotation marks around ‘tax relief.’ Perhaps she should have put scare quotes around the words “I disagree” as well.

          1. Diane, I never know exactly what Becka is saying since sometimes it appears she hates x but seperate and apart likes the policy. All of this depends on what she means by “they get something in return” along with the rest of her statement. When people aren’t precise they often are misunderstood.

    1. He might want to make it look like I’m talking to myself out loud in public.

      He can’t do that to both of us at the same time.

  15. JT, I’m eyeballing Wall Street

    Loaded dice, marked cards & card counters are in the casino

    That would be Index Arbitrage trading, derivative trading & velocity trading.

    It’s all computer driven. Don’t mess with Warren Buffett’s casino.

  16. Well said. Not sure who can address this in current climate. The Starbuck guy is already trying but he may help Trump more than help the situation

    1. Maybe Schultz will revive the “Race Together”😊😂 idea, and make it a required feature for all coffee shops, restaurants, and taverns.

    1. If your name is part of your web address, then you can add one letter to imitate a repeated keystroke and the program will recognize it as a valid web address and accept the comment.

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