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April 16, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

An uncertain future for us all

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President Barack Obama seems much less concerned about the deficits and debt than I am.

I am 60 years old and have some money saved, but if the deficits and debt eventually result in hyperinflation, I will be ruined financially and my anticipated retirement will disappear. I also have a granddaughter, and I worry about her future.

I find it surprising that so many people feel like we can continue on this path and never suffer any consequences. That just doesn’t seem logical to me.

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  1. I agree with the letter writer. It is morally reprehensible to pass huge debts and deficits onto future generations of Americans. In 2008 candidate Obama accused the existing President of being un-American for allowing a debt of $6 Trillion. Today it is at $16.5 Trillion, and climbing. With predictions of $20 Trillion by 2016. What does President Obama call this? The US debt is approaching 25 percent of GDP. The Republicans have a plan to reduce it to 19 percent over 10 years. What do the President and the Democrats have?

    Carmine D

  2. Future gives details about the budget presented by each side. It looks like a choice between 'terrible' and 'really bad'.

    One side won't consider any revenue increases via higher rates or closing loopholes and eliminating deductions. The other side pretty much removes any changes to entitlements, even for future recipients of the programs.

    Neither side offers a plan to seriously attack all the fraud, waste and duplication in government programs and neither side offers a serious attempt to re-write the Federal Income Tax Code.

    I find it odd that Americans take Patty Murray or Paul Ryan or most other members of Congress seriously when they offer these proposals. The differences between the budgets is 1.4 trillion dollars over 10 years. One budget basically never balances and one 'possibly' balances at the 10 year mark. We are already more than 16 trillion dollars in debt.... and that is the best our President and our Congress can come up with...And they cannot even agree on any of what each side propose.

    Americans can and probably will continue to support one or the other of these sad sack parties and our present elected representatives... but they shouldn't.

    Michael

  3. There are two major problems in this country that we need to solve or else budget and debt problems will never be solved. One is the exorbitant cost of our healthcare system that consumes 6% more of GDP than it should. The other is a tax system that has been designed to encourage certain economic activites and give tax breaks to narrow and special interests rather than to provide the revenue the Federal Government needs to operate.

    As for your retirement Michael, your choices might be between possible hyperinflation or inadequate "premium support" for your healthcare costs. If either happens, you're screwed.

  4. Jim:

    For a liberal you're very pessimistic.

    Carmine D

  5. CarmineD

    Not everyone would describe me as a liberal. I'll plead guilty to being a populist and a realist. Besides that, cheering up Michael is a tough chore.

  6. Jim,

    I am pessimistic about the future and that will not change unless our useless representatives do more than offer plans that don't go far enough and yet always contain 'poison pills' the other side will never agree to.

    Each side shows no real interest in solving problems. Their only interest appears to be to convince enough Americans that they are doing 'something' that they are allowed to retain their office..... Unfortunately, that strategy is working ... to the detriment of us all.

    Michael

  7. As a foreigner, I wholeheartedly agree with Michael Casler. Deficits and accumulated debt matter greatly.
    For the life of me, I can't comprehend exactly what the Republicans actually want, but I think they genuinely want to reduce spending in order to get the annual deficit under control. My problem is that the Republicans really are the party of the rich, and I suspect most of the cutbacks will hurt ordinary Americans terribly and barely affect the wealthy.
    The Democrats under President Obama appear to have bigger hearts than their Republican counterparts, but Obama obviously follows the teachings of economists such as Paul Krugman who believe that deficits don't matter and that government stimulus is the cure-all for the American economy. I find that philosophy totally ludicrous.
    America as a viable country is treading in treacherous waters. Canada also overspends and has scary deficits and accumulated debt, but at least our system of government seems much better equipped to deal with political gridlock. Your system, as Mr. Casler continually tries to hammer home, is broken at this point in its history.

    Donald W. Desaulniers

  8. We (Obama and company) should be figuring out how to PAY OFF THE DEBT. Cutting spending is absolutely essential. The federal government is not big daddy or sugar daddy. It is past time for tax cuts but FIRST we need to eliminate massive amounts of spending. Even the "defense" department can handle serious funding cuts. There is absolutely no reason the government is funding social welfare programs. SS and Medicare are insurance programs and those who paid the premiums are entitled to coverage. Disabled, deformed, deranged people (at least citizens) qualify for SSI and SSDI--and in Nevada that means essentially no other coverage other than food stamps and state-paid Medicare premiums. ALL welfare programs (at local levels) should be limited to 2/5 years (consecutive/lifetime). If whatever is preventing you from supporting yourself is NOT a disability or similar, YOU need to deal with it, not me. Five years is more than enough.
    I too am age 60, with some savings and investments. The Federal Reserve is DELAYING the hyper-inflation MKC mentioned but the inflation will arrive (if our economy/nation survives) sooner rather than later. We need to start "evasive" action NOW. We need to cut spending down to absolutely essential federal necessities. Sure people have needs. People also have rights, responsibilities, abilities, freedom to chose. So get with it and STOP encouraging teens to drop out of school "because" of pregnancy. Stop providing young parents with social welfare. If they're adult enough to have (and keep) kids, they're adult enough to provide for them. Can you just imagine how our economy would REBOUND as we pay down the debt after demanding balanced budgets? Now that'd be America.

  9. Belleville: I don't know about the "party of the rich." Tune in and note that many to almost all "celebrities" with mega-million incomes are Dems. Looks like they want things to stay the same--because THEY do well when we deficit-spend. Perhaps they do well financially because the masses of us buy movie tickets to mindless violence rather than deal with the world around us.

  10. Rockie: O. has been quoted and on video saying he's passed on the idea of a "balanced" approach. Now he want increased revenue and will not consider spending cuts.

  11. Donald stated "My problem is that the Republicans really are the party of the rich"

    Wow! And to think states with the most millionaires in the USA such as New York, Massachusetts, California, DC, Maryland, Virginia, Connecticut and New Jersey voted for Obama. Sorry, I'm not buying what your selling Donald.

  12. Michael,

    Paul Ryan's offering of a nonsense budget contributes to your fear and add to the uncertainty. All created by the party in control of the House of Representative.

    What is certain, the rich are getting richer. Maybe, you have your investment(s) in the wrong financial instrument(s). Or, is Wall Street the play ground for the corporations and the One-Percent only?

    It is clear to many (those in touch with reality) that the country is improving. To hear people say the country is heading for failure shows a lack of belief in America and lack of knowledge of what is fact and what is fiction.

    I am of the belief, if you don't believe in America, leave! Go! Go somewhere you can have the security and freedom you think you don't have here in America. I say stop complaining, do something about your situation and your insecurities.

    Being an American in not a spectator sport, you can be a participant. You can make a difference. You do have choices. Stop being part of the problem, stop being uncertain...being scared, in fear.

    We don't quit in America. You have choices. Ninety percent of the problems you others are experiencing are self created. If you are in this 90%, this shows you are creative by the fact you created your own problems. Which means you can create a positive situation for yourself.

  13. 70% of inflation is wages. When you start seeing double-digit wage increases year after year you can start worrying about hyperinflation. As it is wages have been stagnant for decades. You can't raise prices with wages dropping in real terms.

    The future of this country has always been uncertain. Slavery, civil war, race riots, labor riots, inflation/ deflation have been part of the American way of life.

  14. Michael,

    Have you watched the recent circus at CPAC? You can't possibly blame Obama for a party that isn't willing to work with him. Obama is correct, the deficit can be dealt with down the road, but you need a willing dancer. Misleading the public to believe that cutting taxes for the wealthiest create jobs is nonsense. We've done that since the Reagan administration with "trickle down" economics and income for the working class has stagnated. The top one percent took 93% of the wealth gained in the recent recovery. It's time they paid for their own yachts and private jets instead of the working class. It's time their offshore accounts were closed along with their loopholes.

    As far as your granddaughter, you should really worry about the planet we are leaving our future generations. The is no doubt that over the last ten years we've recorded the highest temperatures. Ice caps and glaciers are melting, deserts are increasing in size, drought has stricken every continent, and storms have been greater.

    Denying the fact we need increased taxes, that climate change is some sort of conspiracy, and believing our resources are infinite is foolish, if not completely stupid.

  15. FromBellevilleCanada (Donald W. Desaulniers) commented at 7:57 a.m. that " My problem is that the Republicans really are the party of the rich,..."

    Roslenda (Roberta Anderson) promptly countered with "Tune in and note that many to almost all 'celebrities' with mega-million incomes are Dems." And shortly thereafter BoliBlingBling (Jeff Garner) added "Wow! And to think states with the most millionaires in the USA such as New York, Massachusetts, California, DC, Maryland, Virginia, Connecticut and New Jersey voted for Obama."

    Neither recognizes the truth of Mr Desaulniers's comment. One party, Democratic, generally favors the idea that government should work to the benefit of the the majority, the common people. The other party, Republican, generally favors the idea that government should work to the benefit of the elite. The wealth of an individual does not necessarily necessarily control that individual's philosophy of government.

    The former idea is very recent in human history, the latter is traditional: very much by definition liberals want to change tradition, conservatives want to go back to it.

  16. Jeff (BoliBlingBling): you miss the fact that the wealthy are relatively few in number and tend to live in enclaves. Since voting districts are easily manipulated at the local level, gerrymandered..., you end with such interesting data as more Democrats nation-wide voting for Democratic candidates for the House of Representatives, yet the majority of the candidates elected were Republicans.

  17. "Carmine, who was the last president to produce a balanced budget? Was he a Democrat or a Republican?" El Lobo

    The answer didn't change from the last time I provided it to you.

    President Clinton, thanks to a GOP Congress! And Clinton himself will tell you that then and now! Recall after the 1996 mid term defeat in the House, Clinton was forced to move to the center. Think GOP Contract with America and Newt Gingrich, the Republican Speaker of the House.

    Before him, it was President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

    It's a moot point now. The issue NOW is who will balance it again and how long will it take to do it. GOP has a plan to do it in 10 years. Dems in 20 years, which was Rep. Ryan's time frame in the Nov 2012 election. Maybe they can meet in between.

    Carmine D

  18. robert 12:37: YOU MISS the point. Repubs and the rest of the world KNOW that the greater benefit is SELF RELIANCE, not reliance on a sugar daddy government.

  19. Bradley,

    You try to make me into something I am not. Yes, I voted for Bush twice, once against Gore and again against Kerry. I made a choice and it did not work out great. Would Gore or Kerry have been better. Maybe, maybe not.

    I have not and do not blame Obama alone for the debt, but he is in office. Bush royally screwed up but he isn't in office. Do I blame him? Yes I do. Do I think Obama is taking the tough necessary steps? No I don't.

    I see both parties as a bunch of people who want to spend to keep their supporters happy and are not really that concerned about the future of the country.

    Michael

  20. Vernos,

    Yes, I saw of the reporting on CPAC. It is what it is and it's pretty right wing. Does CPAC have to mean that the entire R party is completely nuts? I don't think so.

    Let's talk global warming. As I have said in the past, I have no problem with government investing in clean energy 'research' but they are investing in green energy 'retail'. Once the subsidies end, many of these companies won't be viable. China is an energy monster and if global warming is 'largely' a product of fossil fuel burning, one country, even if it is us, cannot stop it from happening. We need to have government invest in green energy research, develop and the use the cleanest fossil fuels we can and try to get our economy back on track.

    My granddaughter might live a horrific life 'if' global warming is indeed being caused mostly by fossil fuels, and if the warming happens quickly enough and on a large enough scale within her lifetime. She also might lead a horrible life if we so damage our economy by foolish spending that our people cannot afford to live a decent life.

    Either way, it would not be pretty and that's why I worry.

    Michael

  21. I do not believe that we can or will address the debt until the Republican Party goes through a shake out. Too many factions are fighting for control....internationalist v. isolationist, corporatist v. populist, business v. social reactionary, etc. No one faction has enough clout to risk accommodation with BO and the Democrats so no quarter is given. No one speaks for the Party. Boehner attempts to please everyone and McConnell stays conveniently in the background. Paul Ryan has become a convenient foil, trotting out ideas which were rejected at the polls while Eric Cantor plots and sharpens knives...et tu Brutus. I suspect that the next generation of Republican leadership will come from the ranks of governors....Christie, Martinez, maybe even Sandoval.

  22. Bradley,

    Too many people, me included, gave former President Bush and Congress way too much leeway because of 9/11 and the war on terror. Shame on us. That's on me and I am willing to admit that.

    However, when I criticize President Obama, I am attacked as if I just give Bush a 'pass'. That's just not so, but Obama is the President now and if I don't agree with action he either does or doesn't take, I am unwilling to give him a 'pass' because Bush left him a mess. Just like Bush, he wanted the BIG job, campaigned for it and got it. Bush handled alot of the job poorly and that made Obama's task very tough indeed. I expect Obama to tell Americans the truth. I don't care if he bashes and blames Bush because that doesn't change a thing. If he thinks I'll give him a break because of what Bush did, that would be a mistake. I won't.

    Obama needs to tell Americans he understands that we are borrowing and printing 40 % of everything we spend. He understands that we only contribute 30 % of what we use in Medicare benefits. He understands how much waste, duplication and fraud there is in the Federal government .... and then he needs to enlist the American people to pressure Congress to act in these areas and others.

    He isn't doing that and he needs to... for the good of the nation.

    Michael

  23. Michael,
    Maybe Pres.Obama is taking some of V.P.Dick Cheney's advice in which the V.P. said,DEFICITS DON'T MATTER.

  24. Sam,

    Cheney was wrong and so is Obama.

    Michael

  25. The right has moved so far right it's impossible to work with them. Mainstream GOP members have allowed the extremist "we hate everything" people to take control. Even those who are on the inside are asking WTF? Some are saying the whack jobs have taken control of the asylum. Until rational leaders take charge again, don't expect anything to be accomplished by this congress.

  26. Republicans are a clown party even that deficit whining is a scam.

  27. @ HackDelahunts....I'm not sure where you have been the past 35 years but the standard of living has been declining for that long. Used to be a family could buy a home, a car, pay their bills and send the kiddos to college on the wages of one worker. Now it takes at least two along with massive consumer debt. granted that some of that is for toys....a 4X, couple of ATV's or SeaSleds, a 72" TV plus TVs and cable in every room but most is from stagnated wages.

  28. Pay attention to this man:

    http://www.charlierose.com/view/intervie...

  29. Rosienda - "Repubs and the rest of the world KNOW that the greater benefit is SELF RELIANCE, not reliance on a sugar daddy government."

    If that were true, why aren't private firms repairing our bridges and tunnels or rebuilding our roads? Companies use our infrastructure to ship and move products over land. Why are our power lines and gas pipe feeds in need of repair? The answer is, these private corporations want government funds (some skimmed off the top) to do the work.

  30. Teamster,

    I have nothing against unions, as long as they are in the private sector only and they continue to be formed by secret ballot.

    I also agree that we need to rebuild infrastructure and fund education.

    Where you and I part ways is that it appears that you wish to ignore the fact that there is huge waste, fraud and duplication in the Federal government and nothing is ever done about it, that Americans are taking out much more from some programs than is going in to fund them, and that economics tells us that inflation and a devaluing of currency often happens when borrowing and printing of money reaches a certain level.

    I am not knee jerk on cuts and realize they must be implemented slowly and carefully and I don't favor decimating infrastructure and education spending, but I am worried that we don't appear to be willing to make much of a start.

    Michael

  31. "That was approximately 24 years of Republican control of the White House, and yet, the party that pretends to be fiscal conservatives weren't fiscal conservatives at all... WOW! Doesn't that say loads about the Republican Party? How about "all talk and NO action?" El Lobo

    If you understood the answer I provided to your original question, you wouldn't have to ask. But since you did, the answer is the same as I provided before. Balancing the budget is a bipartisan effort with the President and Congress both willing and able to tackle the problem. Right now President Obama is unwilling and unable.

    Carmine D

  32. "Everything that republicans ran on was soundly
    rejected by the majority of Americans." Teamster

    Really? Tell me are the President's approval ratings dropping to below 50 percent AND all polls indicate that Americans believe the Republican Congress is better suited to deal with debts, deficits and budgets then the President. Do you think the American voters finally figured out that the President is playing them and not telling them the truth?

    Carmine D

  33. "And DEMOCRATS will win the White House again in
    2016.

    Either Joe Biden or Hillary Clinton will be
    president with Bill Clinton or Barack Obama as
    their vice president." Teamster

    A rather small, old, and tired stable of presidential and vice presidential hopefuls for the race. With lots of heavy baggage.

    Carmine D

  34. Pointing figures at "parties" and PAC's while the boat is taking on water and sinking is like..... Totally irrelevant at who is to "blame." Who will take steps to fix it. Steps of solvency, stewardship, reasonableness, speed, common sense, NOW.

  35. Jeff,

    Some people prefer to believe in fiction.

    Numbers, no matter how compelling, will not change the minds of the people living in the Bubble.

    It comes down to one simple answer. That is, anything President Obama proposes, or is for, even if it is an item or issue that others like the Republicans once cherishes and championed, then they are all against it.

    Look, not everthing the President has done is good. What is clear, the opposition to the President is deep rooted in bias and prejudice. Let's call it for what it is...Racism.

    All evidence points to this conclusion. In a court of law, this would the finding.

  36. El Lobo:

    Here's your assignment.

    Research and ask any historian, politician and pollster, past present and future of whatever political party and persuasion, [and as many as you possibly can] what it means when a sitting President's approval rating drops by 7-10 points immediately following his reelection. To the 40's percentile. BTW, a reelection won by the slimmest of margins of popular votes by an incumbent president. Then ask what are the chances of the ratings going back up and under what circumstances?

    When you get your answers, please post them here if you have the guts to admit and accept the truth.

    Carmine D

  37. Jeff:

    You're irrelevant and verbose in the process. A combination which often goes hand in hand with you and your posts. Except on rare occasions when you have the wherewithal, maturity, and wisdom to agree with me.

    Carmine D

  38. CarmineD: At 4:46 a.m. you commented "Tell me are the President's approval ratings dropping to below 50 percent AND all polls indicate that Americans believe the Republican Congress is better suited to deal with debts, deficits and budgets then the President."

    You didn't give your source and I could not find anything specifically addressing "debts, deficits and budgets." What I DID find is data about general job performance - of which debts, deficits and budgets are a major part right now.

    Per Quinnipiac University's poll released Feb 8,46% approved Obama's performance, 19% approved the performance of Congressional Republicans, 33% approved the performance of Congressional Democrats. More recently, The most recent Gallup poll, released March 11, shows that 48% approved Obama's job performance, and 13% approve Congress's performance. This is a trend that has been evident since well before the election.

    I think the American voters figured out some time ago just who is playing them and not telling them the truth.

  39. Roslenda: Ref your 7:56 a.m. You say "Pointing figures at "parties" and PAC's while the boat is taking on water and sinking is like..... Totally irrelevant at who is to "blame." Who will take steps to fix it. Steps of solvency, stewardship, reasonableness, speed, common sense, NOW."

    I suggest that you look at the employment data for many months now and at the actual annual deficit figures for the last few years. The appropriate question is not "Who will..." but "Who IS taking steps to fix that sinking boat.

    Right now, the Republican'ts can't be bothered about our sinking. They are too busy trying, yet AGAIN, to repeal Obamacare. This is, what, their 33rd or 34th attempt?

  40. Robert:

    Latest McClatchy-Marist polls to start. And a host of others.

    Carmine D

  41. El Lobo:

    You get a zero for your last assignment. Now for extra credit tell us what liberal Bill Maher said about Iraq and taxes.

    Carmine D

  42. "Carmine, repeat after me "I was wrong about my 100% GUARANTEE of a Romney victory in the 2012 election"."

    Jeff: That's a learning technique that best serves you and parrots.

    Carmine D

  43. "He's still vastly more popular than Congress, particularly congressional Republicans. But in the biggest political clash of the year -- over the federal budget and how to curb deficits -- voters split 44 percent to 42 percent between preferring Congress or Obama."

    Carmine D

  44. "The national survey, conducted four months after Obama was re-elected with 51 percent of the popular vote, found 45 percent of voters approving of the way he's handling his job and 48 percent disapproving."

    Carmine D

  45. "Obama's personal popularity also has declined, with 48 percent of voters having favorable impressions of him and 48 percent having unfavorable impressions. That was down from 53-44 in December. It also was the lowest since November 2011, when it was 47-49."

    Carmine D

  46. "The RealClearPolitics rolling average of Obama's approval polls peaked at 53.8 percent on Christmas Day. Since then it's steadily fallen to 48.8 percent, with 45.3 percent of respondents disapproving of the presidential performance."

    Carmine D

  47. Robert: the Obama administration keeps interfering with the recovery of our economy. We'd have double or triple the jobs created if they'd stay out of it--stay out of doom and gloom threats of more interference.

  48. "Carmine, repeat after me "I was wrong about my 100% GUARANTEE of a Romney victory in the 2012 election and I have been COMPLETELY wrong about Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi"."

    Jeff:

    You don't even want to go there. I said on 9-12 here it was a terrorist attack. You like the White House said it was the video.

    Diminish, delay, blame. 3 features of a cover up.

    Jay Carney said today that 6 months after Benghazi President Obama has not met, talked with, or followed up, through his intermediaries, with any survivors of Benghazi. And quite likely, neither has former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. BUT the current Secretary of State, John Kerry has.

    Carmine D

  49. "A Reuters/Ipsos online poll released on Wednesday showed 43 percent of people approve of Obama's handling of his job, down 7 percentage points from Feb. 19."

    Carmine D

  50. "Barack Obama's approval rating started sliding in Gallup, and last week Reuters had him at 43%. Today, the Washington Post reports that Obama has lost five points in approval in their latest poll, with the most significant decline in his economic policies..."

    Carmine D

  51. Robert: Do you need more?

    Carmine D

  52. "Poor Carmine, after the GOP was thoroughly beatdown in November all that's left for him to hold onto is something about Obama's current poll numbers."

    Not me Last Throes. President Obama. After 4 years of "up yours" and "I don't need you" to the GOP, he's now making romance with them. Why? Three words: Declining poll numbers.

    Carmine D

  53. "Carmine......

    Paul Ryan and John Boehner now agree with PRESIDENT
    OBAMA that debt and deficit are not the immediate
    problem."

    Teamster: "The" immediate problem is J-O-B-S. Second immediate problem is out of control government spending.

    We have to fix both to fix debt and deficits.

    Carmine D

  54. "Carmine you and Jeff from vegas should do a political routine together."

    Thank you Future333. But Jeff can't afford me!

    Carmine D

  55. "And Bill Maher said that the CPAC is a convention
    for republicans with the hoods off.

    I wonder what he ment by that?"

    Wrong Teamster: My question was clear: "tell us what liberal Bill Maher said about Iraq and taxes/"

    Lest you forget it is the Democratic party that was the party of slavery and the KKK!

    Carmine D

  56. "Carmine did you really expect teamster to know anything about history when you asked about what party the KKK was part of? He probably thinks Kennedy freed the slaves. LOL"

    Future333:

    What the Kennedy's did was to put James R. Hoffa, Teamster's hero [and mine I might add] in jail for 13 years. President Nixon, a Republican, pardoned him after 11. I've told this to Teamster as many times as the number in your name above. Teamster refuses to comment on it.

    Carmine D

  57. "There is "future" and there is "chuck333"

    I like and respect both, even if I confuse their posts here. As the saying goes: Great minds travel in similar paths. And theirs' do.

    Carmine D

  58. "There Are None So Blind As Those Who Will Not See."

    Jeff, take your bow.

    Carmine D

  59. No Jeff, I was talking specifically about and to you. There is and has been no discussion at all here about the Catholic Church and Cardinals. Different thread altogether. Try and keep up here. You're falling way behind.

    Carmine D

  60. As usual Jeff, you are irrelevant. At least you took the hint on your verbosity. Hope it lasts but I'm not optimistic. You like to prove me wrong, please do so.

    Carmine D

  61. The only difference between arguing with you and a rock is that the rock has enough sense to know when it's wrong.
    Carmine D

  62. Heal thyself first!

    Carmine D