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Old 12-11-2013, 10:36 AM  
Taco John Taco John is offline
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Undoing the Sequester Is a Step Backward

I'm hoping this thing gets voted down. It's a terrible deal that gives away the only real conservative accomplishment of the last 6 years. Why is Paul Ryan and Boehner willing to cut it open when Obama's not willing to gut the ACA?

It's a terrible deal, and it shows why the Republican leadership needs to be primaried and replaced - Paul Ryan included. I don't care how conservative he makes himself out to be when he so willingly guts our accomplishments, he's acting for the left.


TODAY’S BUDGET AGREEMENT: GOOD POLITICS, MAYBE, BUT NOT GOOD POLICY

The current continuing resolution on federal spending expires in January, and Paul Ryan (on behalf of the Republican House) has been negotiating with Patty Murray (on behalf of the Democratic Senate) for an agreement to set spending levels for the remainder of FY 2014. It is not hard to understand the political considerations that drive House Republicans: the Democrats have been threatening to shut down the government again, as a means of diverting attention from the Obamacare fiasco. Republican understandably don’t want that to happen. But in policy terms, today’s agreement, while not terrible, represents a step backward.

Spending levels under current law were set by the Budget Control Act of 2011, which was the resolution of that year’s epic budget battle. Republicans agreed to increase the debt limit by $2.1 trillion, in exchange for which they supposedly got $2.1 trillion in spending cuts over the following ten years. Because the parties were unable to agree on a different set of cuts (i.e., slower increases), those specified in the sequester portion of the Act kicked in. The sequester had its faults, but it was the Republicans’ biggest domestic policy achievement of recent years. Unless I am mistaken, it represented the most significant restraint on federal spending of the post-World War II era. Under the sequester/BCA, discretionary spending for 2014 was set at $967 billion.

The Democrats hated the sequester, and have been trying to bust it ever since it went into effect. Today, they succeeded. The Ryan/Murray deal pegs FY 2014 spending at $1.012 trillion, which Ryan’s press release described as “about halfway between the Senate budget level of $1.058 trillion and the House budget level of $967 billion.” What Ryan didn’t say is that $967 billion isn’t just the House proposal, it is the discretionary spending limit under current law. The sequester is now out the window.

Republicans did get something in exchange for increasing spending: notably, federal employees will have to increase their pension contributions. But we can say goodbye to the $2.1 trillion in spending cuts that the GOP trumpeted following the 2011 Budget Control Act. That is the real moral of the story–long-term budget agreements are meaningless. Typically, minuscule spending cuts up front are augmented by major cuts in the out-years. But the reality is that the out-years never come. No Congress can bind a future Congress, and political will to reduce spending is always in short supply. Consequently, any spending deal is meaningless, except insofar as it applies to the current year or next year’s spending. Beyond that, all claims to have cut government spending are fatuous.

We will probably have more to say about today’s agreement–which, of course, needs to clear the House to become effective–as more details become available.

UPDATE: A number of observers are praising today’s deal as a “compromise.” Patty Murray set the tone: “‘Compromise has been a dirty word” in Washington, D.C., Murray complained in an evening news conference, but “we have broken through the partisanship and the gridlock.” But wait! The 2011 Budget Control Act was itself a compromise. The $967 billion discretionary spending limit was a compromise, just two years ago. So why should a higher spending number now be lauded as a “compromise”? How about if we reduce spending by another $50 billion, to $917 billion? That would be a compromise too, wouldn’t it? But somehow that isn’t the sort of compromise that is ever entertained in Washington.

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archive...ood-policy.php
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Old 12-12-2013, 10:52 PM   #46
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The problem is that most CEO's are STILL citing uncertainty as a major concern and MOST have cited Obamacare as one of the major factors involved. NEXT YEAR at this time that should all be settled out to a degree and I fully expect we'll see more genuine gains at that point. 2014 and 2015 are the years to look at for serious gains.
When you say "STILL" I assume you mean "since the beginning of time."
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Old 12-13-2013, 01:36 AM   #47
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When you say "STILL" I assume you mean "since the beginning of time."
No, it's a reference to when I pointed to uncertainty being a major issue in the economy in a previous debate here. We have had a far higher degree of uncertainty the last few years than is anywhere close to 'normal'. Obamacare (according to a number of CEO surveys) is the biggest factor in that.

Don't confuse uncertainty with risk. Two completely seperate concepts in the economic realm. (check out Knight if you need more claification)
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Old 12-13-2013, 08:27 AM   #48
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No, it's a reference to when I pointed to uncertainty being a major issue in the economy in a previous debate here. We have had a far higher degree of uncertainty the last few years than is anywhere close to 'normal'. Obamacare (according to a number of CEO surveys) is the biggest factor in that.

Don't confuse uncertainty with risk. Two completely seperate concepts in the economic realm. (check out Knight if you need more claification)
You're on this kick again? Uncertainty is always present.
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Old 12-13-2013, 08:29 AM   #49
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Too bad we will end up at 2% this quarter and 2% for the year
http://www.tradingeconomics.com/united-states/gdp


Oh wait lemme guess: those numbers are "racist!"
Do you understand what a forecast is?
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Old 12-13-2013, 02:32 PM   #50
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You're on this kick again? Uncertainty is always present.
Yes, but that's like saying "hey why you bitching about this hurricane? Wind and humidity are ALWAYS PRESENT!"

If you are arguing that there hasn't been MORE uncertainty in the last few years than you are pissing in the wind because pretty much EVERY economist and more importantly almost every CEO will disagree with you.

Obamacare is a MAJOR factor in that uncertainty but of course it isn't the ONLY factor. The constant budget battles and hazy regulatory environment have been contributors as well. The Ryan-Murray budget deal will help a little but until all the Obamacare crap settles itself out... uncertainty will be a significant limiting factor on growth.
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Old 12-13-2013, 02:56 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by AustinChief View Post
Yes, but that's like saying "hey why you bitching about this hurricane? Wind and humidity are ALWAYS PRESENT!"

If you are arguing that there hasn't been MORE uncertainty in the last few years than you are pissing in the wind because pretty much EVERY economist and more importantly almost every CEO will disagree with you.

Obamacare is a MAJOR factor in that uncertainty but of course it isn't the ONLY factor. The constant budget battles and hazy regulatory environment have been contributors as well. The Ryan-Murray budget deal will help a little but until all the Obamacare crap settles itself out... uncertainty will be a significant limiting factor on growth.
Hadn't you heard? For some reason, Democrats think that they're the party of business now...
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Old 12-13-2013, 03:54 PM   #52
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Yes, but that's like saying "hey why you bitching about this hurricane? Wind and humidity are ALWAYS PRESENT!"

If you are arguing that there hasn't been MORE uncertainty in the last few years than you are pissing in the wind because pretty much EVERY economist and more importantly almost every CEO will disagree with you.

Obamacare is a MAJOR factor in that uncertainty but of course it isn't the ONLY factor. The constant budget battles and hazy regulatory environment have been contributors as well. The Ryan-Murray budget deal will help a little but until all the Obamacare crap settles itself out... uncertainty will be a significant limiting factor on growth.
Appeal to authority much?

Growth has been accelerating over that time period despite your claims of increased uncertainty.
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Old 12-13-2013, 04:04 PM   #53
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Appeal to authority much?

Growth has been accelerating over that time period despite your claims of increased uncertainty.
Got it. So the various CEOs are clueless but once again YOU know more than they do about the economy and why THEY have been holding back from expansion.

Yes there has been some growth... you will get that after you HIT ROCK BOTTOM... what we are talking about is why that growth and "recovery" has been so pitifully anemic.

To be clear, no one is saying Obamacare is the only factor here. Plenty of CEOs are just as Bearish regarding the current regulatory environment. And as I mentioned, a smaller (but still significant) number had concerns due to the budget battles. I don't see the regulatory issues being resolved in any way by 2015 but removing the budget and Obamacare uncertainty should go a LONG way towards accelerated growth. You know, the kind you expect to see during a TRUE recovery.
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Old 12-13-2013, 06:52 PM   #54
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So the economy is growing at a satisfactory rate and we're worried about the inequality of our wealth.

Got it.
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Old 12-13-2013, 07:20 PM   #55
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Got it. So the various CEOs are clueless but once again YOU know more than they do about the economy and why THEY have been holding back from expansion.

Yes there has been some growth... you will get that after you HIT ROCK BOTTOM... what we are talking about is why that growth and "recovery" has been so pitifully anemic.

To be clear, no one is saying Obamacare is the only factor here. Plenty of CEOs are just as Bearish regarding the current regulatory environment. And as I mentioned, a smaller (but still significant) number had concerns due to the budget battles. I don't see the regulatory issues being resolved in any way by 2015 but removing the budget and Obamacare uncertainty should go a LONG way towards accelerated growth. You know, the kind you expect to see during a TRUE recovery.
As has been pointed out before, the recovery we are experiencing is a text book recovery from a credit crisis (which 07-08). I can see you still haven't taken the time to read Reinhardt and Rogoff's paper on financial crisis and what the typical recovery after a credit crisis is like.
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Old 12-13-2013, 07:35 PM   #56
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As has been pointed out before, the recovery we are experiencing is a text book recovery from a credit crisis (which 07-08). I can see you still haven't taken the time to read Reinhardt and Rogoff's paper on financial crisis and what the typical recovery after a credit crisis is like.
I have read it and while I don't agree with it's over simplistic and limited take on things... EVEN IF I DID it wouldn't adequately explain the length and speed( or lack of) of our current "recovery."

If you think this recovery is "textbook" by their metrics than you need to learn to read. You could try and shoehorn the facts as they WERE two years ago and make them fit their model and had a leg to stand on. You don't anymore.

There is no question that this recovery would have been somewhat "slow" without Obamacare or added regulations or budget battles... if you want to use their paper to prop up that position you'd be fine. Instead you choose to ignore any effects from the other 3 factors I have mentioned. Well actually, I'm sure you agree on the budget battles aspect of things... because you look at this from a purely partisan standpoint. Reality be damned... no way Obamacare can have a negative effect! You're gonna ignore the principle of Knightian uncertainty and ignore prevailing economic thought and the opinions of the very CEOs making the decisions simply because you have a partisan agenda to protect.

Keep those blinders on!
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Old 12-13-2013, 07:47 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by AustinChief View Post
Yes, but that's like saying "hey why you bitching about this hurricane? Wind and humidity are ALWAYS PRESENT!"

If you are arguing that there hasn't been MORE uncertainty in the last few years than you are pissing in the wind because pretty much EVERY economist and more importantly almost every CEO will disagree with you.

Obamacare is a MAJOR factor in that uncertainty but of course it isn't the ONLY factor. The constant budget battles and hazy regulatory environment have been contributors as well. The Ryan-Murray budget deal will help a little but until all the Obamacare crap settles itself out... uncertainty will be a significant limiting factor on growth.
It is to CEOs' benefit to always complain about "uncertainty."
Frankly, one could argue there's been less uncertainty the last few years--the R Congress isn't going to let Obama do anything.
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Old 12-13-2013, 07:51 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by cosmo20002 View Post
It is to CEOs' benefit to always complain about "uncertainty."
Frankly, one could argue there's been less uncertainty the last few years--the R Congress isn't going to let Obama do anything.
Actually no it isn't.

And no, the kind of uncertainty that has affected them was put in place in Obama's first years and is still in place and the GOP/Dem budget battles haven't helped either.

You could argue that "regulatory uncertainty" shouldn't be much of an issue at this point but since most of that is put in place by executive fiat it can change without GOP say so. I honestly only mention it because it keeps coming up in CEO surveys I have nothing to back up those claims and it honestly could be baseless. Not something I have enough current info on to care to make a case out of.
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Old 12-13-2013, 07:54 PM   #59
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I have read it and while I don't agree with it's over simplistic and limited take on things... EVEN IF I DID it wouldn't adequately explain the length and speed( or lack of) of our current "recovery."

If you think this recovery is "textbook" by their metrics than you need to learn to read. You could try and shoehorn the facts as they WERE two years ago and make them fit their model and had a leg to stand on. You don't anymore.

There is no question that this recovery would have been somewhat "slow" without Obamacare or added regulations or budget battles... if you want to use their paper to prop up that position you'd be fine. Instead you choose to ignore any effects from the other 3 factors I have mentioned. Well actually, I'm sure you agree on the budget battles aspect of things... because you look at this from a purely partisan standpoint. Reality be damned... no way Obamacare can have a negative effect! You're gonna ignore the principle of Knightian uncertainty and ignore prevailing economic thought and the opinions of the very CEOs making the decisions simply because you have a partisan agenda to protect.

Keep those blinders on!

We've already gone over your uncertainty trope before. It is not the prevailing thought and you cited an extremely flawed paper that didn't say what you thought it did.

Also, it seems you haven't read what I'm talking about because there is no model that came from it. They admit it is a limited sample size but point to the commonalities among the recoveries coming out of a credit crisis.

It's funny that you knock Reinhardt and Rogoff for a small sample and then hold out the CEO survey as authoritative too.
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Old 12-13-2013, 07:55 PM   #60
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Hadn't you heard? For some reason, Democrats think that they're the party of business now...
I'd rather be the party of the people they represent.
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