Obama Did Not Go Quite Far Enough

Let me start off by saying I applaud Barack Obama for announcing a freeze on the pay of federal employees. As many employers let employees go or freeze salaries it is time for the people who are paid by the taxpayer to have their pay frozen as well. Obama finally came on board with what Eric Canter had proposed quite some time ago. Back then Democrats thought it was a gimmick but at least they have come around.

I am serious when I say this is a good first start but Obama did not go far enough. If the people who work for government (and we can debate that there are too many and the number needs to be cut but we do need people to work for government to make it work) then those who receive money from the government and DO NOT work for it need to have their allotments frozen as well.

NO MORE extensions of unemployment. You have your 99 weeks (and we need to reduce that) and bam, you are frozen out. No more welfare increase, you get what you get and that is it. I do not care if costs go up, you need to learn to live on a tight budget. In fact, these programs need to be under more scrutiny so we can see who does not really need to be on them. If you have flat screen TVs (and/or cable), a few cars, a house and cell phones then you need to have your benefits (as if you deserve a “benefit”) cut or eliminated. We are in a budget crisis and we are freezing the salaries of workers who are paid with tax money so it is only appropriate that we freeze or eliminate the payments of tax dollars to those who are not doing anything to earn them.

Obama took a good first step but he needs to go farther. He needs to freeze out the people who are getting taxpayer money and not doing a thing to earn it.

If federal employee’s pay is being frozen (and I am on board with that) then those who are getting checks for doing nothing should be frozen or, better yet, pared down or eliminated.

While we are at it, we should force all elected officials to take a 20% pay reduction.

We will see where this goes because Congress needs to approve it.

Source:
AP (via Yahoo)

Cave Canem!
Never surrender, never submit.
Big Dog

Gunline

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25 Responses to “Obama Did Not Go Quite Far Enough”

  1. Adam says:

    A recent issue of Economist magazine had an article where the author argued that to really impact the deficit we need a combination of spending cuts (specifically entitlements) and tax increases at a ratio of 75:25.

    That is nothing ground breaking but it brings up a big issue: Democrats don’t like to cut entitlements and Republicans don’t like to raise taxes so we instead resort to gimmicks like freezing government pay and eliminating earmarks which are both laughingly useless and mostly symbolic.

    Forget government pay and pork. If I had my way though I would extend unemployment again to the end of the year, lock in the “Bush Tax Cuts” for all but the $250,000+ folks, and skip any plan for $250 checks to anyone. Then next year we’d let the GOP House do the work to reduce spending if they can manage it. If the GOP went about it with a little sanity then both sides could sign off on it as a victory. Some of this will happen but most of it probably won’t.

    • Big Dog says:

      Of course you would increase taxes on the evil rich people, you are a liberal. The issue of pork is not about how much it costs or if it will make a dent. it is about abuse of our money. It is only a drop in the bucket but with enough drops the pail gets full. If members of Congress want to spend our money on something then it should go through the appropriations process and not just added to a bill. Often, no one is aware of the item and that is not right. If they want to spend the money then they need to go through the proper process.

      Make the tax cuts permanent (for everyone, it is OUR money) and cut spending. Reduce social programs and cut waste. Eliminate all spending that is not specifically allowed by the Constitution and require government to have a balanced budget. Imagine if you told your boss (and we are their bosses) that you had financial problems and needed to cut household spending 75% and get a salary increase of 25%. Do you think he would just raise your salary to help you out?

      They are spending money we do not have on things we do not need. Money collected for SS and Medicare should be put away specifically for those programs and the rest of the taxes we pay should be spent on items that are needed to run the government.

      I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents. James Madison

      While we are at it we can close our military bases in most of Europe (let them pay for their own defense) and we can stop giving our money to other countries.

      That should do much better for us than confiscating money from the “rich” who make more than 250k.

  2. Adam says:

    “Of course you would increase taxes on the evil rich people, you are a liberal.”

    I didn’t say the rich were evil, you’re just putting words in my mouth. The rich keeping more of their money does nothing for our economy.

    I want to slightly increase taxes on a tiny portion of tax payers which would return the rate to what it was just 10 years ago. It won’t solve all our problems but it’s a big step in the right direction instead of a tiny droplet.

    You basically made my point. You don’t want any tax increases and you only want to slash entitlements. A real solution would include both. I’m fine with cutting waste and making tough choices on entitlements. I’m just against pretending the rich keeping more of their own money is useful or good policy.

    “Imagine if you told your boss…”

    Stop right there. Once again, the federal budget is not a household budget and the rules do not apply the same. I don’t know why you always want them to.

    • Big Dog says:

      The rules for a household budget are exactly the same. If the government followed them there would not be a mess. For some reason you seem to think that spending more than you make will not lead to disaster in government but will in all other instances.

      The rich pay most of the payroll taxes. They spend more when they have more and that stimulates growth. For some reason you have a problem understanding that raising taxes on anyone is a problem especially in a bad economy.

      You act as if the rich do not pay enough when they pay more now then they did 9 years ago.

      The problem is, you think you know how their money should be spent and what they should have to pay. They do not use the government services paid for with taxes and the people who pay little or no taxes use a lot of the services. UYou think that is fair but who are you to decide? Why do you get to say how their money is spent?

      And in what world is 250k RICH?

      Do you really think the people whose taxes are increased will not find a way to pay less to offset the intrusion?

      It is not like any money is being lost. The rates stay what they are and government lives within its means. You are right, I do not want any tax increases and I want to slash entitlements. We already pay taxes (and the rich pay the most) and we pay quite enough. It is time to CUT.

    • Blake says:

      Ah, but the rich USING SOME OF THEIR MONEY FOR JOBS, well, that is another kettle of fish entirely, wouldn’t you agree, Adam?
      Or do you believe that rich people just keep all their money, and never use it to improve the lives of those who work for them?

  3. Adam says:

    “For some reason you seem to think that spending more than you make will not lead to disaster in government but will in all other instances.”

    Not true. I think spending more is bad in government but I also understand the complexity of the federal government and it’s obligations to it’s own people and the rest of the world. The simplicities of a household budget do not do the argument justice.

    “They spend more when they have more and that stimulates growth.”

    I’d like to see that backed up with evidence.

    “You act as if the rich do not pay enough when they pay more now then they did 9 years ago.”

    Tell me the page you’re getting that figure from in your source. I’m not seeing it.

    “And in what world is 250k RICH?”

    A world where 98% of Americans and the very vast majority of the world earn far less than 250k. What is rich to you if 250k is not rich?

  4. Big Dog says:

    Darrel, go away. You come here and link to something that has the name of a Republican in it as if that makes a difference. If the same guy said global warming was a hoax you would be blasting him so quit trying to act as if you care what a Republican’s budget director says.

    If I am to believe this means something to yuou then you must tacitly admit that what Reagan did and what his people did was credible because you give his person credibility.

    Adam, rich was defined as people making over a million dollars. However, since we now know how you define it then i must say that the people in America who make 30k a year make more than the vast majority of people in the world so they are now rich. Increase their taxes.

    • Adam says:

      “…30k a year make more than the vast majority of people in the world so they are now rich. Increase their taxes.”

      Yes, but they are not also rich by American standards so I fail to see the logic there. Find me where it says rich pay more now than 9 years ago.

      • Big Dog says:

        Of course the question was in what world…
        97% of the people in poverty own a TV and most of them are big screen.

        Page 10 of the report under effective tax rate.

        • Adam says:

          “…97% of the people in poverty own a TV and most of them are big screen.”

          What do you base that on?

          “Page 10 of the report under effective tax rate.”

          I see your point now but it’s a bit misleading. Correct me if I’m wrong but you can hardly compare the percentage of taxes paid by the top quintile in 2000 to the same in 2006 as Heritage has done when the bottom 80% of people saw their income increase an average of 1.9% and the top 20% increased 8%. Of course the rich pay more in taxes now than 9 years ago. They make a ton more money now than 9 years ago.

        • Adam says:

          I remember now that the CBO figure you first cite is about effective rate while Heritage was talking about liabilities. I’m still not convinced the effective rate is higher. Can you cite a figure from page 10 so I know I’m looking in the right spot?

          • Big Dog says:

            27.1 vs 26.8 in the top figure, effective tax rate for 2009 and 2001 respectively.

            And more people in the upper income brackets were subjected to the AMT, a travesty if ever there was one.

  5. Mr. Ogre says:

    I’m right there with you, Big Dog. I’m SO tired of so many people, and liberal media with their various stories out today ( http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Unemployment-extension-cnnm-1277395125.html?x=0&.v=2 )whining about the end of benefits.

    Know what? I’m sorry these people are still unemployed. If I had money and less government regulations, I’d hire them. But why should I be personally held responsible for their bills? Why do they, and the media stories, demand that I, personally, get money taken from me by force to give to them? By what right do these people have a higher claim on my earning than I do?

  6. Adam says:

    Your correct that the top quintile pays more in taxes now than in 2001 but from that chart you see that’s true of every quintile. You said the rich pay more now than in 2001 but the chart you cite proves that wrong.

    We can wrangle over what is rich but I’m talking about raising taxes slightly on the top 2% and most of all on the top 1%. In that same data table you can see the top 1% paid 31.6% in 2009 but 33.0% in 2001 so their taxes have actually gone down.

    • Big Dog says:

      The highest quintile encompasses the top 20% which would incluse all the people you mention. The highest quintile (top 20%) pay a greater share of the federal tax burden than all other groups combined and that is a fact. How is it fair to add to that disparity?

      The fact is the rich pay more taxes and they pay the greatest share. Why should they pay more?

      The top 10% would be the people above 250k that would be affected. They still pay nearly half the taxes in this country (with the next 10% paying the 15%) so once again I must ask why it is that these folks, who are small in number, must bear the brunt of the burden for this country and why they must bear an even bigger burden? How is it right to make them pay more when they already pay the most?

    • Big Dog says:

      The effective rate for all falls but the income to which the taxes applied is greater. As heritage showed, the wealthy paid more in taxes. The rate went down but the amount of taxes went up.

      • Adam says:

        “The rate went down but the amount of taxes went up.”

        I’m only concerned with the rates themselves. If you earn more you pay more regardless of the rate changes. That’s a different subject altogether.

        “How is it right to make them pay more when they already pay the most?”

        Yes they pay the most but they earn the most. Do I think it’s fair? Yes, I do. You don’t get rich and stay rich as an island. You accomplish it through a support system of labor and consumption that drives our country and it’s economy and fuels our way of life.

        So the rich don’t use social programs the same way? Too bad. As a country we depend on those who do use those programs to keep afloat. Instead of raising taxes on those who can afford it let’s just slash entitlements and watch as consumption and economic activity drop off because people aren’t getting the help they need when they need it most. Let’s see how wealthy our top 2% are then.

        • Big Dog says:

          As I stated, the rich paid more in taxes and as Heritage pointed out, they paid more in taxes.

          Sorry Adam but it is not the job of the rich to fund social programs that people “need.” You act as if the support system that allowed these folks to get rich was provided for free. They got rich by employing people the PAID to work. Why should they also now pay for social welfare programs that sends money to people, most of whom had NOTHING to do with the people getting rich?

          The people who provide the labor are compensated and the people who consume receive a product that they want or need and that they pay for. It is part of Capitalism!!

          You act as if the rich people are the only beneficiaries. The labor benefits and the consumer benefits. Everyone receives some benefit from the process. The rich guy is the one who took the risk with his capital, not the labor or the consumer.

          You also seem to think that all the people in these programs need to be. That is total bunk. Whatever did our country do before all of this? People provided for themselves and their families.

          I assume that you would be OK if when you were in college the school took your A grades and made them Cs and then gave the points to the Fs so they too could be a C. Those failing students need the grade and you have more than enough so you should provide for them.

          Perhaps if the rich decided to stop producing you and your ilk could wither on the vine. Face it, if the producers decided to stop investing, hiring and providing we would be in a mess. Look at how that has affected the ecvonomy. There is plenty of money out there but the evil rich are not hiring or expanding because they do not know how future taxes will affect them or what waits in the darkness. I love the way YOU decide what the rich can afford. They already pay the biggest part for government but you want more.

          What next, will they have to pay more for a can of peas based on salary?

          I wonder how square the equal protection under the Constitution and charging different rates for taxes. Jeez, let some homo not be able to get married or join the military and we are discussing equal protection. Let the rich pay higher tax rates and there is no such thing as equal protection.

          How about we all pay the same rate?

          How about we eliminate all but the absolute necessary social programs?

          How about if we are all able to invest our own money for retirement and keep the gubmint out of it.

          Do you need the gubmint to wipe your butt for you?

          And if the rich have to pay the most for this country then they shjould have the most say in how it is run. Don’t pay taxes, don’t get to vote.

        • Adam says:

          “As I stated, the rich paid more in taxes and as Heritage pointed out, they paid more in taxes.”

          You are correct but it is still a meaningless point. The top 2% have actually seen their effective tax rate drop in that time period. It’s time to raise that back up a few percentage points.

          “You act as if the rich people are the only beneficiaries.”

          No, I’m just reminding you that the rich pay higher taxes because they can afford it and it supports a system that helps them get rich and stay that way.

          “I assume that you would be OK if when you were in college the school took your A grades and made them Cs and then gave the points to the Fs so they too could be a C.”

          An absurd and meaningless comparison.

          “I wonder how square the equal protection under the Constitution and charging different rates for taxes.”

          We’ve been over this before. Differing levels of taxes based on differing levels of income do not violate equal protection no matter how many times you suggest otherwise.

          “Perhaps if the rich decided to stop producing you and your ilk could wither on the vine.”

          They won’t do that because we’re not calling for killer tax increases like you might want to believe. We’re talking about a few percentage points more. The rich won’t feel it, and our budget will be better for it.

          “Don’t pay taxes, don’t get to vote.”

          Still the most un-American thing you’ve ever suggested. You still need to expand your view of what it means to contribute. It involves much more than simply how many tax dollars you pay in every year.

          • Big Dog says:

            Still the most un-American thing you’ve ever suggested. You still need to expand your view of what it means to contribute. It involves much more than simply how many tax dollars you pay in every year.

            Really? When this country was founded only landowners could vote. The Founders knew that when someone has a vested interest it makes a difference. Were the Founders unAmerican?

            But you might have a point. Contributing involves more than how many tax dollars one pays. The wealthy pay most of the income taxes AND they provide jobs AND they keep the economy going AND they take the risks that allow others to benefit.

            How about those who contribute also contribute with tax dollars? It is what the rich do every day.

            And once again, who are you to decide what they can afford?

  7. Adam says:

    “The Founders knew that when someone has a vested interest it makes a difference. Were the Founders unAmerican?”

    No, but many also owned slaves. They were not right about everything. I don’t think you are un-American either. I just think what you’re stating is an un-American idea.

    “The wealthy pay most of the income taxes AND they provide jobs…”

    The wealthy earn most of the income so therefore they pay most of the income taxes. This would be true even if we had a flat tax. The rich don’t really create that many jobs though compared to middle class business owners. The rich are important which is why I’m all for being careful in how you tax them. I don’t think they are evil I just think they can afford a slight increase.

    “And once again, who are you to decide what they can afford?”

    Just a guy who votes for representatives who usually feel the same way as I feel on these matters. Nothing special about it.

    • Blake says:

      WOW! “The rich don’t really that many jobs…”? What about Bill Gates? Warren Buffet? I could go on, but if you cannot concede the logic point on those two examples alone, you will never-
      Most of the rich do not sit on their money- they know it takes money to make money, so they reinvest much of their profits.
      True- the vast majority of Americans will be like me- I never made over $40,000 a year- ever- but I managed to put food on the table for my family, and STILL dream of expanding my business- perhaps even being rich myself.
      And you, with your confiscatory attitude, would deny the dream that EVERY AMERICAN worth his salt dreams of? The possibility of becoming rich?
      How arrogant you are in your attitude-

  8. I do not care if costs go up, you need to learn to live on a tight budget. In fact, these programs need to be under more scrutiny so we can see who does not really need to be on them.