Americans Aren't Bound To Pay the Government's Debts

If the "consent of the governed" is a sacred American principle, how does the government borrow money in our names and compel us to repay the debt?

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew says if Congress doesn’t raise the debt ceiling—or, as I call it, the debt sky, because apparently the sky is the limit—the government won’t be able to pay all its bills starting October 17. The Congressional Budget Office says that dire condition won’t set in until sometime between October 22 and 31.

As he has each time this issue has come up, President Obama emphasizes that increasing the debt would only permit the government to pay expenses already incurred and would not finance new spending. To which I again reply, rhetorically: Why is Congress allowed to spend money that it knows it won’t possess unless the debt limit is raised? Not only does that violate good sense, it also rigs the debate over the debt limit by threatening default as the price of voting no.

Such a query about the debt sky assumes that Congress operates in a context of legitimacy. So what we really need to do is step back and question that context itself. To do that, there is no better person to turn to than Lysander Spooner (1808–1887), lawyer, abolitionist, entrepreneur, and libertarian subversive. It so happens that in section XVII of his 1870 essay “The Constitution of No Authority” (number 6 in his No Treason series), Spooner took up the question of government debt with his signature fresh look. As you might imagine, he left nothing standing.

“On general principles of law and reason,” Spooner wrote, “debts contracted in the name of ‘the United States,’ or of ‘the people of the United States,’ are of no validity.”

How could that be?

It is utterly absurd to pretend that debts to the amount of twenty-five hundred millions of dollars are binding upon thirty-five or forty millions of people, when there is not a particle of legitimate evidence — such as would be required to prove a private debt — that can be produced against any one of them, that either he, or his properly authorized attorney, ever contracted to pay one cent.

Certainly, neither the whole people of the United States, nor any number of them, ever separately or individually contracted to pay a cent of these debts.

He has a point. I can’t recall ever registering such consent—or being asked to, for that matter. Can you? Aren’t we taught that the “consent of the governed” is a sacred American principle?

Earlier in the essay, Spooner handily disposes of the claim that voting or paying taxes implies consent. Since we are subjected to the government’s impositions whether or not we vote—opting out is forbidden—any given individual may have cast a vote purely in self-defense, for the perceived lesser of two evils. And paying taxes certainly cannot signify consent, because the penalty for nonpayment is theft of one’s property, imprisonment, or (should one resist) death. In fact, there is no way not to consent, which makes the whole question rather suspicious. How can one actually consent if there is no possible way to withhold consent? (Charles W. Johnson has something to say about that.)

So by what authority do the people who claim to constitute the U.S. government borrow money in our names and compel us to repay the debt? By no authority at all, as far as I can see, unless “might makes right” counts as authority.

Spooner continues,

How, then, is it possible, on any general principle of law or reason, that debts that are binding upon nobody individually, can be binding upon forty millions of people collectively, when, on general and legitimate principles of law and reason, these forty millions of people neither have, nor ever had, any corporate property? never made any corporate or individual contract? and neither have, nor ever had, any corporate existence?

It seems that this is not possible. “Who, then, created these debts, in the name of ‘the United States’?” he asks.

Why, at most, only a few persons, calling themselves “members of Congress,” etc., who pretended to represent “the people of the United States,” but who really represented only a secret band of robbers and murderers, who wanted money to carry on the robberies and murders in which they were then engaged; and who intended to extort from the future people of the United States, by robbery and threats of murder (and real murder, if that should prove necessary), the means to pay these debts.

Here, when Spooner says the members of Congress only “pretended to represent” Americans at large, he is referring to his earlier point that because the ballot is secret, we really don’t know whom these alleged representatives actually represent, that is, whose agents they really are.

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  • pan fried wylie||

    Maybe we should be bound to pay those debts, then people might stop electing the guy who offers more free shit. Might take a couple election cycles, but the "No Free Lunch" lesson ought to sink in once taxes consume the greater portion of their income.

    As it is, when our elected representatives don't represent the will of the electorate (the last decade of military expenses they permitted and Obamacare for two prominent examples), then Hell No, let them pay for it. They can even setup a payment plan.

  • Knarf Yenrab (prev. An0nB0t)||

    Might take a couple election cycles, but the "No Free Lunch" lesson ought to sink in once taxes consume the greater portion of their income.

    It hasn't sunk in in Europe over the past century or so, and the only time reform comes is when a credit crisis emerges that can't be put off another day. Taxes, particularly when most of those taxes are paid by a small minority of voters, aren't going to teach anyone a lesson, particularly when the real tax on the voting public will take the form of continued monetary & price inflation rather than just jacking the income tax across the board.

    As far as most voters are concerned, price inflation is an unfortunate fact of life like earthquakes and hurricanes rather than political desire to disguise taxation.

  • pan fried wylie||

    To my credit, I did use qualifiers like "maybe" and "might".

    As far as most voters are concerned, price inflation is an unfortunate fact of life

    THIS. They probably just assume it's greedy corporations hoarding the profits from those price increases so the CEOs can swim in it ScroogeMcDuck-Style. I feel like I'm talking to a child every time I explain how the govt printing or borrowing more money causes devaluation of the dollar. Come to think of it, I haven't actually tried explaining it to a real child, who I suspect would understand the concept more fully.

  • Knarf Yenrab (prev. An0nB0t)||

    I feel like I'm talking to a child every time I explain how the govt printing or borrowing more money causes devaluation of the dollar. Come to think of it, I haven't actually tried explaining it to a real child, who I suspect would understand the concept more fully.

    One of the problems is that this is a legitimate conspiracy that's going on in plain view, but if we point it out, we're called conspiracy theorists. It's hard to believe that the fed operates as it does, and since there are "Nobel Laureates" who defend the practice, there has to be some magic to it.

  • hollanderpetr||

    my co-worker's step-mother makes $63 every hour on the laptop. She has been without a job for 7 months but last month her pay check was $13317 just working on the laptop for a few hours. visit

    http://www.Works23.com

  • Scarecrow Repair||

    I like showing people this chart and pointing out that inflation began after the income tax and fed banking.

  • Zeb||

    It is interesting how before the 20th century there were short periods of fairly high inflation, but they were more or less balanced by periods of deflation.

  • Scarecrow Repair||

    Notice they coincide with wars.

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    Now that's a hockey stick.

  • ||

    OMFSM!

  • Carolynp||

    We're homeschoolers, and you're right! Children understand it far better, especially when you include the tiny factoid that they, in fact, will be dealing with the debt incurred.

  • Paul.||

    Mmnah, they can just hand it to their kids.

  • BLEEDINELL||

    Military budget accounts for less than 17% of the budget.
    I spend more of my own budget than that protecting my property.
    Bashing the military is disingenuous and ignores a real need to protect our borders, interests and way of life.
    You are only online ranting because we have a strong military.
    You need to get out of the hippy mindset that we can all just get along as long as we can share a blunt with each other. The world is full of evil motherfuckers that want to kill you and take what you have.

  • Almanian!||

    Thanks for bringing the derp HARD, 'merican.

    #derp

  • Zeb||

    You spend almost 1/5th of your budget on protecting your property? Where the hell do you live?

  • Carolynp||

    I could see that in, say, Chicago or Detroit.

  • hotsy totsy||

    So if you make, say, $50K a year, you spend $8500 every year on protecting your property? $800 a month? That's some security system.

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    The world is full of evil motherfuckers that want to kill you and take what you have.

    And as long as they stay over there, I don't really give a shit.

  • SomeGuy||

    problem is the free lunch always goes to the people that have nothing to loose. Hence why they want the free lunch and continuously vote for it.

  • setTHEline||

    The real problem is that our monetary system is based on debt. We can't shrink the money supply by trillions on trillions (and mind the leverage) by paying off our debt, as it would create some of the worst economic turbulence ever seen. That's the dirty little secret that tax and spend liberals either aren't aware of (too stupid) or won't mention (too corrupt). Debt is instrumental to our economy.

  • SomeGuy||

    debt isn't though. You could have a government function just fine without inflation and debt. It is only needed with how much hand outs there are. You cut all the handouts our government would have a surplus of 100s of billions and the economy would flurish.

  • MoreFreedom||

    It'd be quite a different story, if government, when raising the debt ceiling, required every citizen to sign a promissory note to pay their share back.

    However, government has also corrupted the tax system, so both the spending and taxing side are corrupt, and don't treat people equally, because the law doesn't.

    Government has already decided that certain citizens' share of taxes should be higher than others, which isn't fair either.

    Personally, I'd like them to bring back the poll tax, and if you can't show you've paid at least $10,000 in taxes, then you can't vote in federal elections. Similarly we should have a minimum state/local tax paid to vote in state and local elections.

    That would end voting by those looking for "free stuff" except the 1% rich who do much of the stealing by buying government favors from corrupt politicians who'll sell out taxpayers for campaign cash.

  • Rich||

    If the "consent of the governed" is a sacred American principle, how does the government borrow money in our names and compel us to repay the debt?

    AR-15s?

  • SIV||

    "Patrol rifles"

  • Brian||

    You consent by not leaving, silly.

    Just like a battered wife consents to abuse if she doesn't leave her husband, making it A-OK. Duh.

  • setTHEline||

    Yeah, silence as acceptance. "If you don't like it here in Amerika, move somewhere else."

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Actually, I mean, unfortunately, it is a principle of law codified in the UCC that fraud is perfectly legal as long as no one objects. Along the same lines, contracts are presumed to be made by not objecting, even though much of the time one party doesn't know that they're making a contract or have the opportunity to object or to renegotiate.

    This applies to just about every interaction with a judge.

  • Wyrd Wulf||

    AR-15's and willing, deluded young people confused from birth about patriotism. They are perverted by those that are old enough to know better, but because of propaganda and subversive teaching on the proper (American) role of government and citizen, are themselves confused about the subject or corrupt. But we dare not support the (federal) troops, even as they are used to imprison us.

  • ||

    At any rate, they can have no proper claim against the rest of us.
    Meaningless. This is the same BS as "You are not required to pay income tax". "Proper claim" doesn't enter into it. All that matters is that the government issues debt and collects taxes. Whether it's done "properly" or "legally" or "constitutionally", doesn't count for the fuzz on a fly's eye.

    Don't want to pay the public debt? Don't trade US Dollars.

  • ||

    That's a wonderfully eloquent rendition of, "Fuck you, cut spending."

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    Whoever was stupid enough to extend that much "credit" do the government will be paying that debt. Not me.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    A lot of that debt is held domestically.

  • Rich||

    "We owe it to *ourselves*!"

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    Yeah?

    Yeah. I know.

  • Ballz||

    how much of the debt is held by the Fed?
    default on that.

  • John||

    America doesn't have to pay the debt. But if it doesn't want to it will have to take the cost of setting up a new currency. It is a question of semantics. Sure they don't have to pay it. But they will pay a hell of a price if they don't.

  • Rich||

    Nuevo dollar, Baby!

  • Warrren||

    Bring on the Redbacks!

  • Snark Plissken||

    Caps.

  • Sunken Idaho||

    I'm still waiting for my letter from Vault-Tec. Fingers crossed!

  • Carolynp||

    Bitcoin.

  • hotsy totsy||

    Bolivares fuertes!

  • Fatty Bolger||

    I came here to say this. Americans will pay, one way or another. Never doubt it.

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    Can we initiate a class action suit against all living current and former congressmen who ever voted for for a budget that spent more than they had? Make them PERSONALLY responsible for the entire thing.

    There...we're off the hook.

    *wipes hands*

  • Whahappan?||

    Fuck you, sovereign immunity! Suck it, bitch!

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    Debtklok Debtklok Debtklok Debtklok!

  • ||

    We call out to the beasts of the sea to come forth and join us, this night is yours. Because one day we will all be with you in the black and deep. One day we will all go into the water.

  • Mustakrakish||

    Musta..... Krakish....

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Release the Kraken!!

  • Knarf Yenrab (prev. An0nB0t)||

    In fact, there is no way not to consent, which makes the whole question rather suspicious. How can one actually consent if there is no possible way to withhold consent?

    Harry Reid just tweeted that Sheldon Richman and Maestro Spooner are nothing more than Tea Party Anarchists. And racists.

  • ||

    "Harry Reid just tweeted that Sheldon Richman and Maestro Spooner are nothing more than Tea Party Anarchists..."

    That is the third time I have heard him use that word to describe anyone who disagrees with total government. He must have just learned the word and he thinks it is really cool.

  • Concerned Citizen||

    Only gold or silver coin are legal tender.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    No. Au & Ag are the only things that CONGRESS can make legal tender. You and I can agree on anything to be legal tender in our agreement.

  • sarcasmic||

    You know, we've got the biggest and baddest military the world has ever seen. Instead of looting Americans to pay this debt, why not go loot someone else? We had this opportunity in Iraq and Afghanistan, but instead our politicians manage to fuck up a wet dream.

  • Knarf Yenrab (prev. An0nB0t)||

    Colonialism has a bad habit of making the colonizers poor.

    I'd recommend an old-fashioned imperial shakedown/protection racket. Slip all the non-nuclear nations a note and threaten moral panic followed by invasion unless they surrender 5% of their nation's GDP to the U.S. every year. We can even internationalize the IRS and hire more auditors from the pools of unemployed Americans to audit our new imperial satellites while stimulating the economy via increased employment and aggregate demand. Win/win!

  • General Butt Naked||

    If we did that while offering military protection and free trade & travel (as we have between the states) I think it'd work out for everyone.

    Hell, let them keep their own local laws and customs (no forcing of democracy) and they'd probably internalize our system in a generation.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    That's basically what the American empire is. The problem is that we try to force the pseudo religion of democracy on them too.

  • John||

    Exactly. It is a bullshit myth invented by Marxists and later Leninists that the colonial powers got rich because of their colonies. No, the colonies were a luxury of them getting rich. Other than the Spanish looting the Inca and Aztecs, no country ever got rich from colonies.

  • General Butt Naked||

    What about Rome?

  • John||

    Rome didn't have colonies. The annexed and extracted huge sums of taxes. That is not what the European powers did.

  • Knarf Yenrab (prev. An0nB0t)||

    And as usual, Rome had it right. If you're going to be a monstrous bunch of murderers and thieves, don't pretend that you're doing it for the benefit of the barbarians. Just shake them down and step in every now and then to crucify those who threaten the local governments/tax collectors who pay homage.

    The U.S. is in the nasty position of being a quasi-colonial empire that, for political purposes, must engage in nation-building to justify the expansion of the empire. The result of that is that it does massive damage to other nations and their civilians while making all of us poor, as we and anyone else who holds U.S. Treasuries will continue to foot the bill for the adventurism. The only people who benefit are the defense industry, bankers who get first use of inflated dollars, and members of the political class who have a symbiotic relationship with those industries. Literally everyone else is getting shafted, but they go along with it because the level of propaganda is damn impressive.

    The constitutional democratic-republican empire is an extraordinary con, when you stop to consider it. The Framers would have to be truly astonished to see what's happened over the past 150 years.

  • Mickey Rat||

    "If you're going to be a monstrous bunch of murderers and thieves, don't pretend that you're doing it for the benefit of the barbarians."

    The Romans did publicly justify their policies as what they did was in everyone's interest.

  • General Butt Naked||

    True.

    Isn't what rome did similar to what I said we should do in my post @4:05? I know a bit about the roman empire, but I'm not an expert. You seem to know more of their history.

    Sure rome eventually taxed themselves out and the empire fell, but it lasted a hell of a lot longer than it looks like the American period will last.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Hard to say, Aremica's empire can easily last another couple of hundred of years.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    If by "years", you mean "days", then you're spot on!

  • pan fried wylie||

    Other than the Spanish looting the Inca and Aztecs

    Do we actually have any record of how much gold they brought back? Or a record of how much it cost to perform the looting? Wasn't crossing the Atlantic back then economically equivalent to putting something into orbit today?

  • SomeGuy||

    I do remember learning that Spain has horrible inflation because they brought so much back they crashed the market

  • ||

    And that went so well for the Spanish. Heh.

  • pan fried wylie||

    And that went so well for the Spanish.

    I don't see America taking an institutionalized nap in the afternoon. I think the Spanish conquest of those gold-hoarding primitives worked out well enough.

    "LOOK AT ALL THIS GOLD!!!! We'll be able to nap like kings for CENTURIES, MUWAHAHAHAHAHAHA"

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Meh, it worked out pretty well for them when you consider that Spain wasn't even a unified nation state when Columbus sailed, and that Spain went on a century long military binge off the Inca gold.

  • BakedPenguin||

    I'm not sure even Spain got rich. They mistook gold for wealth (since their wealth was measured in gold). All that really did was create massive inflation. Had they immediately traded all of the gold and silver to other nations in return for goods and services, they could have gotten rich, as well as exported most of their inflation to other countries.

  • pan fried wylie||

    This is why I'm retroactively voting for Penguin as God Emperor of Spain. His policy on looting indigenous peoples is rock solid.

  • BakedPenguin||

    That's right - print up hundreds of trillions of pesos, and buy stuff all at once. The currency will be ruined when they find out, but we'll have TVs, coke and whores, so who cares?

  • hotsy totsy||

    Then the whores will have all the money and y'all will be poor again.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Had they immediately traded all of the gold and silver to other nations in return for goods and services, they could have gotten rich, as well as exported most of their inflation to other countries.

    That's largely what they did. The problem is that doing so helped build up the productive capacity of the countries that they were buying from instead of their own.

  • Christophe||

    That is incorrect.
    Adam Smith talks about in the wealth of nations. Spain (and Portugal) had extreme restrictions on the exporting of gold and silver. This means they bore the brunt of the inflation cost, and didn't event get to arbitrage goods out of it.

  • SomeGuy||

    So do a Rome/USSR got it

  • VG Zaytsev||

    I'd recommend an old-fashioned imperial shakedown/protection racket.

    We have a newfangled shakedown racket in the petro-dollar. Much more efficient.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Like when all the anti-war left was crowing about blood for oil at the onset of the Iraq war. Gawd, at least if we were fighting for cheap gas, that'd be something worthwhile.

    But for all the blood and money lost in Iraq, oil (and by extension, gas) prices have only increased.

  • pan fried wylie||

    you try making a profit on that blood-oil once they enacted OSHA over there.

  • Tejicano||

    Yeah, and the oil we were "trading" blood for was almost all destined for the EU - at least much more so than for the US market.

    Just about all the oil we need in the US is supplied by sources in the Americas. Any idjit who thinks we ship oil halfway around the world when most of the demand can be met with local sources isn't worth the time it would take to explain it to.

  • Warrren||

    The military, especially the ground forces, is not as capable as their PR division leads one to believe.

  • John||

    They are very capable. It is that we expect them to do things that they are not designed to do. If you want them to kill people and take ground they are the best. If you want them to rebuild countries and consider it a defeat if even one nut is still willing to blow themselves up, not so much.

  • Warrren||

    Their main ground vehicles are trash; heavy and slow and vulnerable, and mostly road-bound and they take a long time to get built up in the first place.

    If your country is not flat and hard all over you really have nothing to worry about from the ground. Even average canopy and other closed terrain will reduce the already marginal potency of those weapons and make it hard on aircraft to acquire targets.

    The more hills, rivers, forests and so forth the worse it gets for the US.

    There are many countries immune from US invasion.

  • John||

    That is completely untrue and stupid. We have what amounts to air supremacy. Yes, that terrain is great to hide out form air power. But it prevents you from massing your troops. Without mass, you can't win a ground battle. So those vehicles would roll.

    And you have it completely backwards. Tracked vehicles fall apart using roads. They are fabulous off road. That is why they don't work as well doing occupations. But they are unstoppable in a battle of maneuver. They were designed to be used in northern Europe for God's sake.

    No offense, but you really need to rethink your opinions on this. They are totally off.

  • Warrren||

    I'm completely right. You simply have no idea of what you are talking about.

  • John||

    No, you don't. The fact that you think tracked vehcilces are road bound shows that you don't know the first thign about tracked vehicles. The pads on the tracks vibrate apart on the road. This is why the Army has huge trucks with low boy trailers . The idea is to hall the tanks on roads close to the point of contract and then turn them lose off road.

    You clearly have no understand of how combined arms actually work if you think that closed canopy or even untankable terrain means a country can't be invaded.

    I am sorry Warren, what you are saying is not even close to right.

  • Warrren||

    Jesus Christ! The Strykers and HMMVs are stuck on roads unless the ground is flat and hard.

    And where do haulers have to drive? Is it on roads?

    The M1s and Brads are too heavy for bridges and overpasses and many streets. Plus they are slow, use a lot of fuel and breakdown a lot. They are very vulnerable, the Brads especially are deathtraps.

    Overall they all lack the firepower and mobility they need.

    M1s, Brads, Strykers and HMMvs are all crap weapon systems that have high logistical needs and can be defeated by even a marginally competent OPFOR that has good terrain to work with.

  • Warrren||

    Also I'm going to need a source on that tracks shake themselves apart claim. I've tried googling for it but I'm not finding anything.

  • John||

    Look up the manuals on them Warren. i spent in year in Iraq and saw the initial invasion. And was with an heavy infantry division. Trust me when I tell you the brads and the M1s are designed to go off road not on road. They don't work for shit as police vehicles.

  • John||

    The Brads and the M1s don't just drive around alone waiting to be attacked. They work with infantry, engineers artillery, air power. It is called combined you half wit.

    You are so uninformed, I don't even know how to start a conversation with you. That OPFOR can't do shit to anything, if it can't mass. And you can't mass when the other side has the battlefield awareness and air supremacy the US has.

    Warren I wouldn't be rude if you were not so smug. But my god you are a fucking moron on this subject. You take one little piece of knowledge and extrapolate it out to one giant idiotic conclusion. Either educate yourself or stop talking on this subject.

    There may be conventional forces out there that can stop the US. But whoever they are, they are a lot more an just any OPFOR in any country. This is embarrassing how stupid you are.

  • Warrren||

    Fuck, you can certainly show off how stupid you are when you get going.

    You actually think having to haul your heavies on trucks is mobility? That it would work in say hilly, mountainous or soft terrain? Have you seen the pictures of M1s sunk into the ground in Iraq? You were there you probably saw that in person.

    Explain to me how things went at Pristina during the Kosovo thing. oh right, the Russians got there first.

    And I'm not being smug, you're just doing that so-con flag waving and mouth shit that your ilk does when someone points out that their precious Team Olive Drab has flaws.

  • Warrren||

    *mouth breather shit

  • Warrren||

    The Brads and the M1s don't just drive around alone waiting to be attacked. They work with infantry, engineers artillery, air power. It is called combined (arms)

    It's be a lot easier if the Brads were as fast as the M1s or had the same fuel range.

    This force structure is nothing more than pork for retiring generals. Expensive, unwieldy shit that gets troops needlessly killed and mulcts the taxpayers for billions. You should be ashamed to be defending it.

    Tulpa I get, but you? You hate bureaucrats and their useless programs why is this a hot-button with you?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    Tulpa I get, but you?

    'scuse me; I didn't realize how statist one must be to point out that the two most recent invasions we succeeded with were (a) an extremely mountainous country and (b) a country of sand and mud.

    You may have a point in this conversation, but you ruined it by making an overbroad statement like "If your country is not flat and hard all over you really have nothing to worry about from the ground."

    Have you seen the pictures of M1s sunk into the ground in Iraq?

    I guess Saddam and the Baathists were safe from invasion then, LOL.

  • Warrren||

    It is flat and open to air power. And it took a long-time to "win" and then we left having never really "won". So yes on the opening, no on the endgame.

  • ||

    The M1s and Brads are too heavy for bridges and overpasses and many streets. Plus they are slow, use a lot of fuel and breakdown a lot. They are very vulnerable, the Brads especially are deathtraps.

    This is why it took 6 months to get from Kuwait to Baghdad and they had to go around the Tigris and Euphrates rivers.

    Overall they all lack the firepower and mobility they need.

    "Need"? Against who?

  • Warrren||

    True. I don't want to send them anywhere, of course. SLD

  • SomeGuy||

    actually track vehicals are made for roads and off roads hence why they have the rubber road pads on the tracks. They just have very short life span on the road. Replacing track is a bitch. Tracks only real weakness is sand but that can be mitigated by a decent driver. The sand can build up in turns and throw the track so when you turn you have to do fast right turns and then go straight for a few feet while the sand gets out.

  • SomeGuy||

    let me add something someone else said below. Tracks have a lot of maintenance. They can travel in any terrain but it is expensive. The maintaince for the AAV, LAV, and abrams is a lot. AAV is the worst. But the LAV is superior to road conditions and distance due to less maintenance and better mileage. But don't get it wrong tracks can do it just expensive.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    If your country is not flat and hard all over you really have nothing to worry about from the ground.

    Wait, Afghanistan is flat? Iraq is hard? Huh?

  • John||

    Yeah, that is another good point. Iraq is hardly hard. It has a surprising amount of mud and sand and dust that are like quick sand.

  • ||

    Yes, and it was only the superiority of the Sherman over the Wehrmacht panzers that enabled us to win WWII. Now that we have shit like equipment like the Abrahams we could never pull it off.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    Panzers sure, but the M4 was totally outmatched by the Tiger I and II they encountered later in the war.

  • ||

  • Warrren||

    Southern Iraq is tank country, the rest not so much.

    And it's mostly wide open for air power. And even with it M1s and Brads suffered huge losses.

    And did Afghanistan have a competent force in defense? They seem to have now of course.

  • ||

    Ugh. They suffered no meaningful losses in the conventional campaign. As John said above:

    It is that we expect them to do things that they are not designed to do. If you want them to kill people and take ground they are the best. If you want them to rebuild countries and consider it a defeat if even one nut is still willing to blow themselves up, not so much.

    If we just want to smash and leave a country they're great. They aren't survivable against big mines beneath or adjacent to them, but neither are anyone else's conventional combat vehicles.

  • Agammamon||

    The M-1's and Bradleys suffered no significant combat losses and a good chunk of the ones destroyed in combat were due to friendly fire.

  • Warrren||

    Yeah, sorry I was conflating the FF and subsequent occupation losses for the Brads. But not counting the 500 or so that couldn't go at all because their transmissions were shit.

    In DS 23 M1s were lost which as a percentage of those deployed is indeed small but is a far inferior record when totaled up to the results of other MBTs.

    I've seen a source that claims 150 M1s knocked out in OIF with 15 totaled. Not a good record. And 80 more lost in the next couple of years of insurgency.

    Yeah, it's not a good tank.

    Overall for what it cost divided by what it delivered, the M1 is a pile of crap.

  • Warrren||

    500+ total lost in Iraq. Invasion and occupation.

    Over 15% of the total in service. Can you name another US tank that did that bad?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    Warren, how many were lost during the invasion? Ya know, the thing you're supposedly talking about.

  • Warrren||

    23 in DS, 15 were write-offs in OIF.

    Compare that to the records of the other tanks. The M1 is shit.

    And you could argue that DS was an Iraqi win. Not a big win, to be sure. But the main guy stayed in power until the next invasion... into a big open country where air power dominated. Don't you even read the comments? OIF was an airpower win not an M1 + Brad win.

    My point is that there are many countries, and I'm not talking about major or even B+ tier powers, in the world immune from a successful invasion by the US so invading them for their loot to keep funding our lifestyle is pointless. Which was an offhand reply to Sarcasmic's sarcasm which offended your holy writ of US military invincibility.

    Afghanistan isn't even conquered. There's this thing called the "news" maybe you've heard of it. There is still constant fighting, so invasion yes, successful invasion, no. Maybe I should have spelled that out in crayon for you to understand. No Brads have ever been sent there and no M1s have ever fought there. Why? Because they suck. Which is my main point.

    And goalposts? Really? Your goalposts have so many frequent flier miles they can get a free month vacation to Japan.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    Desert Storm was an Iraqi win? What? Huh? I'm running out of interjections to put here. Holy shit, did you just really say that? No, I don't think you can plausibly argue that. They lost Kuwait, were subjected to gigantic NFZs in the north and south, and that's because Bush I decided to stop the campaign after Kuwait was recovered.

    There is still constant fighting, so invasion yes, successful invasion, no.

    I guess the Nazi invasion of France wasn't successful either!

    Maybe I should have spelled that out in crayon for you to understand.

    I can tolerate people being wrong. I can tolerate people being arrogant. I can tolerate people accusing others of intellectual dishonesty. I sure as hell won't tolerate all three at the same time!

    Your goalposts have so many frequent flier miles they can get a free month vacation to Japan.

    More big talk with nothing to back it up. Seems to be a pattern with you.

  • Warrren||

    The goal was to remove Saddam. They didn't manage it. Default win for him.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    The goal was to remove Saddam.

    Rewriting history again, Warren? No, that was not the goal. We assembled the coalition with the promise that we were just after freeing Kuwait and nothing more.

  • Warrren||

    http://www.defense.gov/News/Ne.....x?ID=29253

    Rumsfeld said the first is to end the regime of Saddam Hussein "by striking with force on a scope and scale that makes clear to Iraqis that he and his regime are finished."

    They changed their minds because they knew they couldn't manage it. They left four IRG units untouched, which then went on to crush the Kurds.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    That link is from 2003, Warren. Wrong war.

    Are you trying to look stupid here?

  • Warrren||

    Oh look, you got one right. You'll ride that horse forever now, I suppose.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    And did Afghanistan have a competent force in defense?

    There go the goalposts.

  • Warrren||

    And that reply should have gone in this space..

  • SomeGuy||

    they suffered because of IEDs hence why the MRAP was made.

  • Warrren||

    They suffered from IEDs because they were road-bound, just like HMMVs and Strykers and Brads.

    All (not the HMMVs) supposed war winners that cannot go off-road.

    Great force structure.

    Which goes to my main point that the US military ground forces are not the super thrusting penises of doom that they pretend they are.

    What would happen to these systems in say, Vietnam?

    What happens if the roads are impassible do to enemy action or the heavy vehicles just can't drive on them? As constructed now the US would not be able to do anything.

    When the US uses a different mix they do well, like in Panama. No M1s or Brads used there. As long as they insist on bringing the heavies and making them the star of the show things will go wrong.

    And the MRAP is still road-bound...

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    What would happen to these systems in say, Vietnam?

    They probably wouldn't be used as much because the strategy would be totally different. To paraphrase Rumsfeld, you go to war with the war you have, not the one Warren thinks you should have.

  • Warrren||

    Would they? These guys? The M1+Brad+Stryker guys? Really?

    No. They would delay so they could take a year to get their fetish machines in place and then keep pushing until the money and the patience of the US citizens wore out.

    Then they would run away, call it win while cashing checks for all the consultancy work they'll be doing after.

  • SomeGuy||

    i am astonished at how stupid you are being. I am pretty sure everyone on here will agree that you are being a complete moron and have no basis for anything. An occupying war require you to occupy where people are....which are where roads and cities are.

    They can't go off road so they would fail in a war being off road....what??? really? Please

  • SomeGuy||

    they were on the road because that was where they were supposed to patrol...it has nothing to do with them not being able to go off road....you are being willfully ignorant. Have you seen them or driven them? I have driver one of them and they are great off road but you can't be off road when you are occupying a city so quit being a willfully ignorant tard.

  • Agammamon||

    1. Whatever problems the Stryker has, you have to remember that the units fielding them previously had *no* armor - Stryker's are a massive improvement over walking.

    2. The Stryker's problems aren't as great as was thought initially - we have (and do) spend an enormous time on roads, which slows tracked vehicles down if you don't want to destroy them. In addition the Stryker can self-transport over long distances - you need to load a tracked vehicle on a trailer to cover long distances unless you're up for a maintenance nightmare.

    *And* in most terrain, the Stryker's maneuverability is not significantly less than the M-2/3 or the M-113 its intended to replace.

    3. The real fuck-up is the armor - rpg's were considered a lesser threat during its design phase rather than the main threat these vehicles actually face.

    4 The Army is *supposed* to be heavy and take a long time to build up. They're a steamroller who will flatten anything in their way. If you want quick and surgical, call the Marines.

    5. Drones, Drones, Drones.

  • ||

    Whatever problems the Stryker has, you have to remember that the units fielding them previously had *no* armor - Stryker's are a massive improvement over walking.

    Eh, I don't think that's so easy to say. Over the last ten years there's been a shift from heavy to Stryker brigade, somewhat masked by the increase in overall brigades due to the Iraq/Afghanistan buildup.

    In the future the planned cuts will hit armored brigades most heavily, followed by light, and I think only one or maybe two Stryker brigades are going away.

  • Agammamon||

    I'm not sure how that counters what I was saying - most of the units that have gotten the Stryker had no organic armor before. They were using HMMVW and MTVR for transport before and now they have some light armor.

    And the heavies losing some tanks and getting Strykers may mean that *those* guys aren't happy, but the early Stryker units have been pretty happy with the improvements having a Stryker brings over having to hoof it everywhere.

    And it shows that the Army is *already* in tune with Warrren's complaint and are lightening up for fast build-up and increased mobility in future conflicts - whatever you may say about the Stryker, it can certainly go places the M-1 can't, and get there faster.

  • Warrren||

    Strykers are too heavy and have too much ground pressure to go off-road in all but the hardest grounds. And they have shit for protection.

    And really, I don't want the Army getting faster and lighter or cheaper* that just induces the political types to use them more often. I'm just pointing out that the current forces are not what they are said to be.

    *I'd like to stop spending money on it totally of course.

  • Nazdrakke||

    Just like to remark that as an ex tank soldier this conversation has been interesting to follow and I have no intention of getting involved in it. Oh, and there are a lot of people on the internet who have less of an understanding of subjects than they think they do.

  • SomeGuy||

    what is too much ground pressure? All i can recall is the AAVs having ~9.7 pounds per in i think....that number still pops into my head. Granted i can't even recall the LAV or M1 number but i am sure you could google it. I have seen Abrahams and AAVs drive on the shore of CA and NC in some real loose sand where you could barely walk/jog in it let alone run in it because it was so deep and loose. I also have seen AAVs drive in 4 foot deep mud in Japan i think with little issue....wish i could have seen it in person or drive it there. Looked like a ton of run.

  • Warrren||

    Do a GIS for Abrams stuck in mud and you'll see. In addition to many other photos that are inexplicably tagged that way.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    Pretty sure that every kind of mass-produced vehicle in human history has gotten stuck in mud at one point or another. Even your beloved Sherman.

  • Warrren||

    I like the Shermans but they're not my beloved.

    The point is that at 72 tons for the M1 and 33 for the Brad there are places they just cannot go that better conceived vehicles of their class can go. And the US has these crap-heaps because the people in the procurement process are corrupt motherfuckers who give not one shit to troop safety or operational capability. That's also why the Stryker is in service.

  • Agammamon||

    1. The M-1 doesn't weigh 72 tons - 69.5 for the M1-A2-HA and only 63ish for the non-upgraded ones (that the Marines and Natl Guard tend to have). I don't think you're going to get to 72 tns even with a full combat load.

    2. The Stryker only weighs (worst case scenario, applique armor and HPK fitted) 27.2 tns for the heaviest version (the MGS).

    Unfortunately there are trade-offs to each capability. You want everywhere mobility then you want tracks (in a vehicle this size), you want a small logistics footprint, the ability to quickly build-up forces in theater, and the ability to cross a country quickly - then you go for wheels.

  • General Butt Naked||

    There's this one of a sad horse stuck in the mud.

    Poor horse.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    Even Camaros are not immune.

    And yes, there is apparently a pay site full of images of scantily clad women whose cars are stuck in mud.

  • Warrren||

    A pay site? Jesus. How the fuck is that a thing that people will pay for?

  • SomeGuy||

  • Agammamon||

    To be fair, those are AAV's - a completely different vehicle used almost exclusively by the Marine Corps and not the Army.

    The MC are the service that goes in quick and light and secures the landing points for the Army to bring in the heavies.

  • SomeGuy||

    please the AAV is a piece of shit and a bradly and M1 are better in almost every way. I highly doubt a bradly or M1 get stuck easier than an AAV. Plus AAVs are slow as a dog. M1s are just as fast and i think bradlys are faster.

    Also marine corps has M1s too so a pointless point. The point of US doesn't have off road capabilities is stupid. Sure they will get stuck in some outlandish situation but to say that they will get stuck in a lot of cases is stupid. Only in extreme cases they will get stuck and that has nothing to do with them being bad vehicles. Whatever a track vehicle gets stuck in nearly ANYTHING will get stuck in it. Nothing wrong with the vehicles and they perform very well (minus AAV it sucks) (Also people in charge of them are idiots...they break down 500 feet from the ramp lol) (Nothing but tards)

    The point of Iraq and Afgan and IEDS and tracks going down is not due to not being able to go off road....it is the point that they are in charge of patrolling the road so where are they supposed to go? You need to sweep Chicago and clear out enemies so how are you going to go off road in Chicago? Are the vehicles incapable of doing so? NO! Their mission is on the road. They can't complete it driving around in the farm land can they? Warren is just being a trolling idiot using a fake situations and manipulating talking points to prove he is an idiot troll.

    I can't believe i am the first one calling him out on this.

  • Cascadian Ephor Xenocles||

    It's this simple. Success in war requires that the military and its strategy line up with the political goal for the war. The US military has long been designed to apply overwhelming force whether through numbers and the strength of its industrial base (as in WWII) or through technological force multipliers (as in the modern era). When the political goals line up with those abilities (expel Iraq from Kuwait, overthrow the Taliban, overthrow Saddam) we see success. When they don't (foster western democracy in Iraq and Afghanistan, fight North Vietnam but not too hard), we do not.

    It's as easy as not using a hammer to cut wood.

  • Agammamon||

    Pshaw! You can use a hammer to cut wood - you just have to hit it really, really hard. And maybe the wood isn't cut so precise and is mostly in splintery chunks, but hey - we cut the wood, MISSION SUCCESSFUL!

  • SomeGuy||

    actually with enough force a hammer can cut through wood like a sword......just need enough PSI. Straw can pierce a tree you know.

  • Cascadian Ephor Xenocles||

    As I'm sure you're intentionally demonstrating, you can often achieve something like the desired result, but the quality will often be so poor as to make the result unusable or it will require extra effort that renders the project unworkably expensive.

  • Warrren||

    Yes, but if you brand it as small-batch, artisian cut wood you'll make sales.

  • Cascadian Ephor Xenocles||

    Ain't nobody buying our artisan colonies, though there does seem to be an interest in shoplifting them.

  • Hillary's Clitdong||

    Because the U.S. military is woefully incompetent at imperial occupation. A lot of it is paper strength that doesn't translate to the kind of war that you have to fight to have an empire of exploited territories. It spends massive amounts on gee-whiz technology that is of next to no use in that situation. F-22s are a case in point. Nifty, but they do very little in an insurgency war that an A-10 couldn't do, and at a much lower cost.

    TL;DR version: The U.S. military exists because it's a huge employment agency and it creates lucrative munitions deals, not because it can win imperial wars.

  • John||

    No. It could easily win imperial wars. The problem is that to win an imperial war, takes a level of ruthlessness that the American public will not tolerate. The idea that a military that is literally a generation ahead of any other on earth couldn't win an imperial war whatever that is is absurd. But to win a war, you have to have the will to do so. And in a Republic having that will is not up to the military.

  • Hillary's Clitdong||

    But "winning" imperial wars is more than just knocking out any pre-existing government's forces. It's winning an insurgency, which may never end. Plus the U.S. is faced with the basic financial difficulty of waging that sort of war. Between equipment, training, salary, and benefits, each U.S. soldier costs a shitload. Pretty soon, the cost of fighting the war will vastly exceed any potential returns from winning.

    And "having the will to win" doesn't necessarily help you. Germany certainly had the will to win during WWII, and its counter-insurgency policy is probably the most extreme that has ever been tried. Didn't work, and if anything it compounded the insurgency they were facing.

  • John||

    Insurgencies are easy to win. You just kill all of the people. The only reason you find those things hard is because you want to do them within the context of limiting civilian casualties.

    and most insurgencies fail. The insurgency failed in vietnam. The South was conquered by a conventional army. It failed in Iraq. The Iraqi government still exists.

  • Cascadian Ephor Xenocles||

    Arguably there never was an insurgency in South Vietnam, just a front group for a stealth invasion from the North. We could have completely suppressed the VC and still faced a well-armed and numerous conventional force.

  • Hillary's Clitdong||

    Well, I suppose the U.S. could begin a campaign of extermination wars. What would the return be?

    If Iraq is a "success", then the U.S. cannot sustain a pattern of such wars. The cost of that war grossly exceeds the financial returns that the U.S. got from it.

  • ||

    We got returns?

  • SomeGuy||

    yea that is what i was thinking

  • Hillary's Clitdong||

    "Zero" is an amount. It's just a godawful one unless you invested somebody else's money and you have no obligation to pay that person back. You know, like if you're a government and you're "investing" taxpayers' money in your latest military vanity project.

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    Winning an insurgency is easy...it's just not very moral.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    The problem is that to win an imperial war, takes a level of ruthlessness that the American public will not tolerate.

    I don't think that is correct. The American public, for instance, didn't have a problem with killing millions of people in Vietnam. An effective military occupation could have been done with fewer total casualties.

    The problem is that American does not know how to do a military occupation - it's just not in our national dna - the way that is was in Spain's in the 16th century or Britain's in the 19th.

  • SomeGuy||

    seriously? There were tons of hooplas about various immoral attacks on civilians.

    The My Lai Massacre
    The Killing Fields
    The Pentagon Papers
    The use of Agent orange
    Violations of the Geneva Conventon

    I always hear people in your 50-70s bitching about the war

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Slaughtering civilians was John's prescription, not mine, although that works if you go to the extreme of full ethnic cleansing / extermination like the US did against Native Americans.

    The other way of doing it is to control the population by putting platoon in every hamlet and scaling up the presence for larger population centers and then controlling (governing) the populations. Something the US never did

    Instead we kept trying to destroy the enemy with search and destroy missions or holding a fixed point for a battle and then abandoning it after the battle was over. And we left the governing to in country lackies.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    We did a bang-up job in the Phillippines. Which we shouldn't have, but we did.

  • SomeGuy||

    This- we could slave and eradicate a whole country if the people wanted to. Seriously the amount of force the US could use is ludicrous. But the problem if you have to turn into an evil tyrant to do that. The US may have the means to do that but it is debatable. The US has a history of pissing on human rights but to pull a stalin, mao, hilter, or whoever type invasion is unlikely. At least for now. I am not really surprised by anything now

  • ||

    "...why not go loot someone else?"

    Where? You could loot half the world and still not run the country for a day.

    My stepmother is from Peru. She is fascinated by trains. When stopped at a crossing she stares slackjawed at the passing trains. I asked her why the fascination. She said it amazes her that one train carries more value than the GDP of her entire country. I pointed out how many trains there are in this country and how often they run. She simply cannot grasp it.

  • pan fried wylie||

    It's like a cokehead trying to mug passerby in a low-income neighborhood to support his $1k/day habit.

  • ||

    Heh. Good analogy.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Reminds me of when the occupy movement tried to foment anger towards the 1%. Someone pointed out that if we confiscated every bit of wealth from the 1% our government could run for about a month.

  • Irish||

    Iowahawk had a great post about redistributing wealth where he calculated the amount of money made by the entire top 1%, the 25 largest corporations in the country, etc. In order to fund the government for a year using only wealth taken from the rich, you'd have to liquidate all the assets of the top 1%, raise income taxes on the middle class to like 50%, and take all the money from the 40 largest corporations in the country. There were also a bunch of other things you had to do.

    That's only for one year. Good luck funding the second year now that the top 1% is destitute and all of your corporations are bankrupt.

  • General Butt Naked||

    That's the problem when numbers start going into the trillions.

    There's no way to grasp how much money that is. Our debt is a mere abstraction to most. People can't wrap their heads around how much a trillion dollars actually is. They think that raising taxes on the wealthy 3% will balance everything out and they can get their free shit without consequence.

    Though I wonder how many politicians realize the facts when making populist speeches about the rich paying their fare share.

  • ||

    That's because people don't grasp how interest works.

    Thinking raising "taxes on the rich to pay their fair share" is probably the stupidest belief in the left-wing arsenal. You can expropriate all the wealth and still not cover the debt.

    Debt is slavery. Debt is evil.

  • Warrren||

    IIRC Bertrand de Jouvenell pointed out the same thing in the 30s but he didn't have a blog. Or if he did he kept it to himself.

  • SomeGuy||

    true i get your point but a lot of poor countries have resources. Afica diamond minds for one, afgan drugs (who says we can't sell it), fort nox, i think several trillion are there ripe for the taking ^^, and so on. Plenty of places to control for free labor and for resources. It doesn't have to be physical money.

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    You know, we've got the biggest and baddest military the world has ever seen. Instead of looting Americans to pay this debt, why not go loot someone else?

    Yeah, as long as we are going to impose our will on the rest of the world, we may as well drop the "but we're the good guys" act and profit from it.

  • Hillary's Clitdong||

    We really could do with new uniforms. Perhaps Hugo Boss could make them?

  • Cdr Lytton||

    Hugo Boss's dead corpse could pump out a better uniform faster than the current Camouflage Improvement Effort.

  • SomeGuy||

    what is bad is marpat?

  • Cdr Lytton||

    The Camouflage Improvement is the Army program to fix/replace UCP. Nothing wrong with MARPAT imho and would have been a much better choice (minus the chicken globe and anchor) than UCP. Some of the pattern designers claim marpat is outdated but that's now, not then.

  • SomeGuy||

    i don't get the navy or army or airforce patterns...ok the patterns are find but the colors??? Army makes no sense. I get the bluish colors for airforce and navy butt he armies colors are dumb...or amybe i just don't understand how it works.

  • Agammamon||

    That's because the Navy's (and I won't speak for the AF wienies) colors aren't chosen to actually, you know, *camouflage* you.

    They're chosen to invoke camouflage and 'military bearing'.

    When we actually go into the field (as rare as that is) our guys either wear the appropriate MarPat uniform or one of our new digital camo uniforms appropriate for the environment.

  • SomeGuy||

    interesting i have only seen the blue digi one and seen them wear the marine corps ones. They have another?

  • ||

    I don't know if it's true but someone told me that the point of the Navy's camouflage is not to hide the sailor but to hide the dirt that gets on his clothes during a days work.

    I assume the same goes for the AF.

  • ||

    That is, of course, the blue camo pattern worn by sailors on board ships. I can easily see why SEALs and Corpsman wear camo but they don't wear the blue pattern, do they?

  • SomeGuy||

    corpsman do but typically don't on MC bases

  • SomeGuy||

    now i think of it i might be wrong. Maybe they do wear blue camies on MC bases. I honestly can't remember anymore....AWESOME!!!

  • William of Purple||

    Stillers are winless in 4

  • General Butt Naked||

    I'm so glad. Here in p-burgh all the fairweather yinzers crawl back into their holes when the stillers lose. That means I don't have to hear about the fucking stillers every 2 goddamn seconds.

  • William of Purple||

    Browns let down those who bet on Cinci one more time.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    They let me down one more time since I picked against them last week.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    Not looking forward to another week of the sports media tonguing Russ Wilson's asshole after yet another 2009-Mark-Sanchez-esque victory.

  • Cascadian Ephor Xenocles||

    Cameron sure didn't let me down for fantasy.

  • Hawk Spitui||

  • Cascadian Ephor Xenocles||

    Provocative headline, but the answer is no. According to the article the bill hasn't even cleared committee let alone the procedural hurdles it would face on the floor.

  • Agammamon||

    Provocative answer, but the real question is - why is this bill even in committee?

  • Cascadian Ephor Xenocles||

    Vigilance is one thing, hysteria is another.

  • Warrren||

    Why not?

  • ||

    The real question is who believes they are not already doing it.

  • Almanian!||

    *points at Choney*

  • William of Purple||

    Oh God Epi's going to be more insufferable than usual.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    Wow, the Skins sure hit the ground running in their quest for 0-4.

  • Almanian!||

    Lions beat DUHHHHHHHHHHHH BEARSSSSSSSSSSSSS. Wow. Just setting us up for a bigger disappointment later in the year.

    Good form, Leos!

    /Lions Fan

  • Almanian!||

    PS I am in the Cedar Rapids/Iowa City area this weekend with Mrs. Almanian. We visited Amana - HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT IF YOU'RE IN THE AREA.

    Germans settled it, one of the orig communes in the US. Now it's all quaint shops, wineries, restaurants. Picked up some wine at a very good price, along with the hand carved art, also very reasonably priced.

    Quite fun - recommended for any Reasonoids into quiet, historical places with no Disneyland qualities.

    PS Raffling off two sides of beef - tickets $3. Three dollars! Yeah, I bought some...

  • Warrren||

    Do all their buildings look like appliances?

  • Almanian!||

    Oddly enough - yes.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Don't stop the gravy train!

    "Engage in whatever political machinations you wish, but do not default," said Honeywell International Inc (HON.N) Chief Executive David Cote. "Don't throw away a credit history built up since George Washington."

    For these corporate leaders, it's a bit like the movie "Groundhog Day," where the main character lives the same day over and over, wondering whether there is a way out of the scene.

    The U.S. government faces the possibility of a partial shutdown on October 1 as Congress struggles to pass an emergency spending bill that the Republican-controlled House of Representatives wants to use to defund President Barack Obama's healthcare law. The Democrat-controlled Senate and the White House reject the Republican position. If the gridlock persists then a spending bill may not be passed into law by the Tuesday deadline, triggering the shutdown.

    Even though many of the CEOs believe federal spending is excessive and a large budget deficit puts U.S. economic health at risk, they want Congress to pass the spending bill and raise the limit on government borrowing.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    The last close-call on a government shutdown in December 2012 and early 2013 dealt a blow to small-business confidence, hurting lending and job growth, said Richard Hunt, head of the Consumer Bankers Association.

    Hunt told reporters on Wednesday that experienced lawmakers understand the implications of shutting down the government, but some newer members do not seem to realize how wide-ranging the effects could be.

    "Some of these people who just got elected believe they are here to save the country, and they're not worried about a two- or three-day shutdown," Hunt said. "So we need to make sure we have adults in both parties right now."

    DOOOOOOOOOOM

  • General Butt Naked||

    Hunt told reporters on Wednesday that experienced lawmakers understand the implications of shutting down the government, but some newer members do not seem to realize how wide-ranging the effects could be.

    Us alive in '95 understand the implications as well. Not much happens.

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    Hunt told reporters on Wednesday that experienced lawmakers understand the implications of shutting down the government, but some newer members do not seem to realize how wide-ranging the effects could be.

    Because... shutting down the government = defaulting on the debt.

    DERP!

  • Will Nonya||

    newer members? as in those elected to push for change in the way congress works?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-VA)||

    dealt a blow to small-business confidence, hurting lending and job growth

    Is it possible to hurt bank lending when the velocity of money is the lowest it's been since the Depression?

  • Will Nonya||

    So is experience in making laws supposed to be a strength or a weakness? it's often difficult to tell...

  • The Late P Brooks||

    More people who don't want to admit DJIA is not the economy.

    Economists at Bank of America and Capital Economics wrote on Friday that the focus on President Obama’s health care legislation makes the positions of both sides more intractable now than they have been during other budget fights.

    “We have no idea exactly how this standoff will be resolved, and even less of an idea exactly when any agreement might be reached,” the Capital Economics team said in a note to clients on Friday. “At this stage, we would be lying if we said we were confident of a positive outcome.”

    If the disagreements persist, the reaction in the markets is likely to become much more pronounced as Oct. 17 draws closer. Mr. Valliere said that in the past, sharp swings in the markets helped to eventually push politicians toward a compromise.

    “You have to worry that the one thing that could motivate Congress to step away from the precipice would be an angry reaction from the stock market,” he said.

  • ||

    Watching Kerry on 60 Minutes. Wow.

    Among other things, he said Obama can and will use unilateral if need be on Syria.

    Amazing.

    Pellet should have then asked but when Bush allegedly went unilateral...

  • Warrren||

    It's different! Things have CHANGED!

  • ||

    Looks like it.

  • Sevo||

    But I was assured just yesterday that Obama didn't want to use military force in Syria. It was McCain who did, and Obama's sage counsel saved us from disaster!
    Isn't that the way is went? My lefty acquaintance remembers it that way!

  • BMFPitt||

    This silliness is why we have a hard time convincing people we're not crazy.

  • Warrren||

    I thought it was our bright pink and yellow jodhpurs with crazy stitched across the bum.

  • Loki||

    Certainly, neither the whole people of the United States, nor any number of them, ever separately or individually contracted to pay a cent of these debts.

    B-b-but... SOSHUL CONTRAKT!!111!!!111!!!!!!

  • Will Nonya||

    "Rips away the veil"?

    Is that what he's done?

    It seems all he's said is that he doesn't want to pay taxes on the basis that he doesn't think a republic is a valid form of government. He seems to hold democracy in even less regard, especially if elections include private ballots rather than publically scrutinized ones.

    It seems to me that Spooner would have fit in nicely with todays politicians with his circular ideology and the what do you have to hide mentality.

  • DebtFreePrinciples||

    If people applied to the government the basics of money management that they should apply to their personal finances, they would see that the ever increasing debt ceiling, threats to shut down government, endless printing of money and manufactured interest rates can't go on forever.

  • DebtFreePrinciples||

  • nina.Malik||

    my best friend's sister-in-law makes $74 hourly on the computer. She has been laid off for 5 months but last month her pay was $14134 just working on the computer for a few hours. have a peek at this website....

    http://www.Works23.Com

  • ro2nn3||

    Start working at Home with Google. It’s the most financially rewarding I ve ever done. On Saturday I got a gorgeous Ariel Atom after earning $6292. I began this six months/ago and right away began to make at least $80 per-hour. Official site, www.Pow6.com
    WORK LESS EARN MORE

  • DaveShayler||

    You might like to read my research into whether you are compelled to pay taxes or mortgages, which can be found by searching for the Third and Final Testament, Part 1

  • pcolsen||

    This is a spurious argument. You are the prototypical "Free Rider." If you really believe the debt is illegitimate then leave the country so you won't benefit from the services i provides. (I'll stipulate that the cost of those services must be reduced.)

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