Economics

Who's the Extremist?

Why are liberals demonizing Paul Ryan's budget plan?

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All of you yahoos who support Rep. Paul Ryan's budget plans aren't just misguided anymore; you're nihilists. After all, if $38 billion in illusionary cuts to the federal budget—1 percent, or less than the amount the national debt grew while everyone was gabbing about cutting 1 percent—is, as the esteemed Sen. Chuck Schumer explained, "extremism," we're going to have to ratchet up the hyperbole.

Rep. Ed Markey, member of the large political party that never resorts to boorish demonizing, recently explained at a progressive shindig that fiscal conservatives have a desire to "destroy the whole wide world." (Yikes!) And when you believe morality springs from the wisdom of technocrats and Washington spurs prosperity and taxpayers have an ethical obligation to pay for the abortions and highbrow radio networks of their more enlightened neighbors, it probably seems as if the whole wide world is crashing around you. The rest of us can only dream.

Markey went on to claim that Republicans wanted to "shut down the Internet" when they had voted to strip censors at the Federal Communications Commission of the power to regulate the Internet. Conservatives wanted to padlock the Web by keeping it open? As devious plots go, this one is as counterintuitive as it is dastardly. No, the Web has never been regulated, and it seems—to the untrained eye, at least—to function more efficiently and freely than any industry overseen by a three-letter acronym. But that's probably the problem.

The irascible Markey, author of the cap-and-trade regulatory scheme, also groused about Republicans (he must have forgotten to mention the Democrats) who are attempting to strip the Environmental Protection Agency of its power to regulate carbon dioxide—or, in other words, everything. Asserting that this is a tad too much authority for unelected bureaucrats to have is—and I'm loosely paraphrasing here—analogous to repeatedly shivving Mother Earth in the back, according to Markey. Democracy, you see, is vital in free society except when the issue is too vital for democracy.

[David Harsanyi talks with The Independence Institute's Jon Caldara about leaving the Denver Post and joining Glenn Beck's The Blaze and Mercury Ink. Article continues below video]

And so it goes. The Democratic mayor of Washington, Vincent Gray, called on citizens to "fight back against oppression." What oppression, you ask? Riders to the 2011 federal budget would end taxpayer funding for abortions and allow a handful of poor kids in D.C. to once again escape public schools. (Talk about fighting oppression.) Choice, as you know, is tyranny. Sometimes.

When Ryan released his long-term budget plan, aimed to bring spending and revenue into equilibrium in a quarter-century, the thoughtful rhetoric continued. The always rational New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, who's already spent your great-grandkids' 401(k) accounts in his columns, called Ryan's plan "extreme," "unprofessional," "nonsensical" "crude nonsense," and accused the author of "haplessness" in one brief blog post.

Others claimed it was a "war on the poor" or, alternatively, a "war on the weak," because to the left, subsidizing the health care of the elderly and poor through the private delivery systems we use, rather than a plodding government system they want us to use, is the moral equivalent of rolling tanks into Grandma Edna's nursing home.

Forget cuts. We just need to tax more. It's patriotic, noted former Secretary of Labor, professor, political commentator but nonexpert on American history Robert Reich. And if you complain about taxes, interim Democratic National Chairwoman Donna Brazile will tell you it's driven by racism—which makes complete sense when you're plum out of rational arguments.

These are the allegedly reasonable, the self-styled moderates and the grown-ups. And that should make any "extremist" proud.

David Harsanyi is a columnist at The Blaze. Follow him on Twitter at davidharsanyi.

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  1. I wanted to say that it’s funny if it weren’t so depressing. But then I decided that we’re are completely fucked anyway, so we might as well just sit back and laugh at the whole thing. Very funny. I’m going to read political columnist going forward for the humor.

    1. I like the way you think.

      1. I was on board with everything mentioned in the post until this nonsense:
        “Washington spurs prosperity and taxpayers have an ethical obligation to pay for the abortions”

        Assuming you’re talking planned parenthood – tax money doesnt go to planned parent hood for abortion (which only makes up 3% of their services). And even if you aren’t referring to planned parenthood its a lot cheaper to pay for an abortion than to put another kid on gov provided welfare or add another person to the group likely to commit robberies or violence

        1. its a lot cheaper to pay for an abortion than to put another kid on gov provided welfare or add another person to the group likely to commit robberies or violence

          A cynic would point out that there is a reason most of these clinics are located in poor minority neighborhoods.

    2. I feel the same way. Given the unbeleivable lack of testicular fortitude with regards to actually doing anything about the deficit, much less the debt, I am convinced that nothing meaningful will be done until the train goes over the cliff.

      Until then, it’s all just one Vaudeville Show after another.

      1. And when the train starts to go over the cliff, they’ll pass an emergency spending measure to solve it.

      2. I’m afraid the train is pulled by an old coal fired locomotive, and we’re heading into a tunnel.

        1. The Taggart Tunnel…

      3. … nothing meaningful will be done …

        I think the only politically realistic course of action, given pols are completely unwilling to cut spending in any meaningful way, will be that the government will print more money. I’m planning on double-digit inflation within the next 10 years. This is real inflation, not the funny numbers that will be put out. Message to low income America from Washington: “screw you”.

        1. I don’t disagree but I wonder how viable that really is, as our borrowing costs will sky-rocket. On the otherhand, maybe that is just watching the train-wreck from one side of the tracks as opposed to the other. Either way, we’re totally screwed and the clowns responsible will go scot free.

        2. Ummm, we already have real inflation hovering around 10% on average, and TRIPLE-DIGIT inflation for some commodities.

    3. ryan assumed a 2% unemployment rate which would be historical

      1. Re: OO,

        ryan assumed a 2% unemployment rate which would be historical

        Old news, OO. Already pointed out and picked appart by H&R.

    4. That’s why I keep reading Krugman. He’s so irrational and hyperbolic that his columns easily pass for entertainment.

      1. I am Canadian and find Krugman hilarious!

  2. The way things are now, Markey et al are going to find themselves in a steadily shrinking box.

    Financial events are forcing cutbacks – of some kind – to appear. If its not in govt. revenue it will be the physical value of their revenue units. It is a loosing battle; the lefties had their chance, even had their chance with the credit card, and now its maxed out and their schemes are broken.

    This narrative isn’t going to change for decades given the obligations coming due, and there’s nothing the Markeys of the world can do about it.

    I love watching it unfold.

    1. I’m retiring in Mexico– assuming my dollar is still worth more than the Peso.

      1. Call yourself a “cartel boss” and the US government might even provide you with your own assault rifles!

  3. The Democratic mayor of Washington, Vincent Gray, called on citizens to “fight back against oppression.” What oppression, you ask? Riders to the 2011 federal budget would end taxpayer funding for abortions and allow a handful of poor kids in D.C. to once again escape public schools. (Talk about fighting oppression.)

    Yesterday, the Mayor of DC was interviewed by Bill O’Reilly, and when asked why is he, as Mayor, opposed to the reinstating of the school voucher program, he invoked sovereignity. You know, the extreme right-wing buzz word, according to the SPLC?

    1. The District does not have sovereignity. Congress has “exclusive legislation, in all matters whatsoever…”

      1. Re: Concerned Citizen,

        The District does not have sovereignity. Congress has “exclusive legislation, in all matters whatsoever…”

        That is exactly what O’Reilly told the Mayor, but he remained firm in his conviction.

  4. “Robert Reich…”

    Gotta love that name.

    1. His father is Robert Reich Jr.

      1. lol i see what you did there…

      2. Ah ha! That one actually made me think. Well done.

        1. I’ll bet at least one third of the readers won’t even bother to think about it.

  5. Walter Sobchak: Nihilists! Fuck me. I mean, say what you like about the tenets of National Socialism, Dude, at least it’s an ethos.

    1. So according to The Dude are we a bunch of gay looking germans?

      1. You better pay up Lebowski, or we will cut off you MEDICARE!!!1!1!!!

    2. -He’s a nihilist

      -huh, must be exhausting.

  6. The always rational New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, who’s already spent your great-grandkids’ 401(k) accounts in his columns, called Ryan’s plan “extreme,” “unprofessional,” “nonsensical” “crude nonsense,” and accused the author of “haplessness” in one brief blog post.

    Krugnutz is more and more sounding like the crazy uncle everybody just ignores during family get-togethers…

    1. … everybody just ignores…

      until someone catches him taking one of the kids upstairs to, um, fiddle about.

      1. For a little economics education.

        Here’s $20 don’t tell your parents or I’ll have to kill them! It’s for the good of the nation.

    2. The hilarious part is that I have an uncle who, when he speaks on political matters, sounds almost like an exact narration of a Krugnutz column.

      1. So that’s where Krugman gets his material.

    3. Except that lefties eat his shit up. For every person who knows he’s a nutbag, there’s 3 Times readers who would willingly guzzle him cum like top shelf wine.

  7. Are there any adults on the lefts side of the fence these days?

    1. Harsanyi quoted:
      One Congressman.
      One mayor.
      One columnist.
      One former politician.

      Not one of them was quoted in a full sentence, let alone paragraph or context.

      Is it really fair (or logical) to take those handful of words from 4 people and equate that with everyone on the left?

      Look, I don’t care about politicians, they’re essentially all statists, a lot of them are corrupt (by any definition other than American politics) and some of them are fucking idiots, but I don’t prove my side better/smarter/”righter” than theirs by using the same hyperbolic rhetoric and syllogistic reasoning.

      1. What do you have against syllogisms?

        All men are mortal
        jcalton is a man
        jcalton is mortal

        1. Deductive syllogisms(your example) are much more reliable than inductive syllogisms:

          jcalton is mortal
          jcalton is a man
          all men are mortal

          It’s a true statement, but syllogisms are not usually a great way to prove inductions.

      2. If you have any poo, fling it now

      3. Not one of them was quoted in a full sentence, let alone paragraph or context.

        My wife has to write papers for a Master’s degree that have more (and better) sources that a dozen Krugman columns.

      4. Not one of them was quoted in a full sentence, let alone paragraph or context.

        Feel free to quote the whole paragraphs and show how Harsanyi allegedly misrepresented what they said.

        Feel free to come up with some quotes by other prominent liberals who DON’T sound like statist authoritarian arseholes on these issues.

        Until you give those links showing Harsanyi is misrepresenting reality, though, STFU.

      5. Harsanyi quoted:
        One Congressman.
        One mayor.
        One columnist nobel prize-winning economist.
        One former politician.

        Fixed.

        1. Listen, strange Swedes lyin’ in ponds distributin’ prizes is no basis for a system of economics! Supreme productive power derives from free choices from the masses of producers and consumers, not from some farcicial fiat economy!

      6. So you missed the whole tea partiers are racists meme. Good times, good times.

  8. Markey went on to claim that Republicans wanted to “shut down the Internet” when they had voted to strip censors at the Federal Communications Commission of the power to regulate the Internet.

    Makes sense, as everybody knows that only a well-regulated machine runs well, and there are no better experienced mechanics than a bunch of bureaucrats who are simply too much educated to be productive… or humble.

  9. I would like to believe that people like Markey are just playing politics saying stuff they don’t believe. But I am starting that that that is not true. I think maybe they really do believe that a budget that leaves 95% of the most expensive central government in history in place is “nihlistic”. In other words, I am starting to thing these people are just nuts. I don’t see any other plausible explination for their behavior.

    1. Power. Their sense of power is derived from money. If you tell them that they not only aren’t getting more money, but actually SAY you’re giving them less (even though they probably won’t) they’re going to go apeshit.

      1. And go apeshit they have. People like Krugman don’t even bother to try to have coherent positions anymore. All they can do is scream invective. They don’t have a plan beyond defending the status quo and they refuse to face the reality that the country is going bankrupt.

        In fairness that describes pretty much our entire political class left and right. But the lefties don’t even pay lipservice to sanity anymore.

        1. Screaming invective is what you do when you are a political minority. I think the left is just warming up for 2012. Or maybe they already feel like a minority party given the thrashing in November…

        2. Keep the tax revenues flowing to keep thy brother.

  10. Let me remind you, extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.

    1. those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither

      1. “In any compromise between food and poison, it is only death that can win.”

        Rand

  11. And if you complain about taxes, interim Democratic National Chairwoman Donna Brazile will tell you it’s driven by racism?

    I guess that makes me a racist.

    1. Any disagreement with a person of color is motivated by racism.

      There can be no other explanation.

      Well, unless the person of color is not a liberal. But any person of color who is not a liberal is a traitor to their race and it doesn’t matter what they say.

      1. Get it right. They’re not a race traitors, but house niggers or lawn jockeys.

        1. I thought the PC term was Oreo cookie.

          1. PC doesn’t apply to non-liberal colored people.

    2. I guess that makes you a fool if you bought into this comment and answered it.

      1. By taking the time to offer that critique, that make you an even bigger fool.

        1. correction… makes you an even bigger fool.

  12. The Ryan plan is shitty because it does not tackle Medicare costs for ten years while those under 55 continue to pay the full Medicare tax then get a lousy coupon when its their turn for benefits.

    Any decent plan should attack current costs.

    Of course Ryan did not want to piss off the most reliable GOP voter base – the elderly.

    1. Re: “shriek”,

      Any decent plan should attack current costs.

      How? By throwing hissy fits? Because the ONLY two way to “attack” costs that does not involve another price control scheme is by either shopping around, or not buying.

      1. How about a co-pay of $100 per doc visit?

        Watch those waiting rooms clear out where they now host Medicare social clubs.

        1. Shrike, I couldn’t agree more with that as a policy. But that is politically DOA and you know that as well as I. The dem talking points would be a litany of ratbaggin teafuckers trying to kill Granny, and thereby killing any chance of at least reforming the program down the line.

        2. Re: shrike,

          How about a co-pay of $100 per doc visit?

          How about just letting doctors bill their customers directly whatever they want, and letting customers shop around?

          1. I doubt that approach would work. US doctors are notoriously reluctant to state any prices in advance.

            1. Only because of the current system. Insurance providers negotiate fee schedules with health care providers, so the price of a service varies depending on who your provider is.

              They don’t tell you what the price in advance, because they don’t know what your price is.

            2. Re: Rrabbit,

              I doubt that approach would work. US doctors are notoriously reluctant to state any prices in advance.

              Are they?

              Make them compete, and they will surely post their prices and send coupons like plastic surgeons and lasik surgeons – and hair stylists – regularly do.

              1. Yup! Speaking of competition and pricing, my local Wal-Mart teamed up with one of the local hospitals, and opened a clinic inside the store. $80 for a physical. Imagine what they would charge if they had actual competition.

            3. Never been to a cash clinic then have you?

          2. Don’t you know that life for almost everyone in America was a nightmarish, dystopian hellhole before 1965?

            Or was it 1935? I can never remember for sure.

          3. How about give the money directly to the elderly and let them spend it on the doctor they want. I guarantee they will stop going to the doctors all together unless they, the doctors, lower their prices or they the elderly die form being to cheap to see a doctor. Either way we win.

        3. I already have that. I have to pay my 1200 dollar deductible first, than insurance kicks in.

          Really I don’t have an issue with that. It’s when you get a prescription it gets pricey. 230 dollars for cough syrup. Or 40 dollars for 5 pills.

    2. It has something to do with the need for generating political support. I don’t doubt the Ryan, in an ideal world and unconstrained by the most powerful lobby in DC known as AARP, would likely begin cutting medicare immediately. But the Dems are demogoging the hell out of cuts a decade away. If they could scare the current crop of septegenarians, any chance at meaningful long term reform would go from remote to complete non-existent.

      1. I agree with both your comments.

        Political repercussion scares any real reform away.

        1. “Political repercussion scares any real reform away.”

          A+

        2. Political repercussion scares any real reform away.

          Paul Krugman knows this and uses it to his advantage.

    3. Of course Ryan did not want to piss off the most reliable GOP voter base – the elderly.

      No matter what the plan is, it must still be politically doable. Fantasy budget plans won’t get far.

    4. Ryan’s plan is far from perfect but any plan will have its flaws. It is the only plan for actually cutting spending that has a chance in hell of being implemented.

      As someone noted on a recent thread, there is no painless way to unravel a Ponzi scheme.

      1. But didn’t reason say the Bowles-Simpson plan actually balanced the budget more?

      2. That’s the thing that no one realizes: Social Security and the rest of the social safety net is a giant Ponzi scheme. Don’t force me to pay in at all.

    5. I agree with you that Ryan doesn’t nearly go far enough in cutting the size of government, that the budget should be balanced THIS YEAR.

      That being said, who else in Congress is proposing bigger cuts in detail?

      1. I have. Click my name to read about my plan.

      2. Rand Paul

      3. I know somebody…

  13. tolerance: forcing you to tolerate me while I show intolerance to you.

    inclusiveness: forcing you to include me while you exclude you.

    equality: forcing you to treat me as an equal while I shower you with contempt.

    extremism: what I call it when I don’t get my way.

    compromise: you give in to all of my demands and I don’t give in to any of yours.

    ideology: holding true to one’s principles. (I, as a liberal, don’t have any)

    oppression: when you take away my power to boss people around.

    1. *I, not you, in definition 2*

      1. I like definition 2 just the way it is…

    2. fair n balanced – info sources in addition to the RW media bubble

      1. Draconian Budget Cuts- laughably small budget cuts.

        Extreme measures- limpdick, symbolic gestures.

      2. Extreme Draconian Cuts- symbolic limpdick gestures; suicidal apathetic lethargy.

      3. Extreme draconian measures- trivial gestures; any range of action slightly above suicide by lethargic apathy

  14. Ryan’s “budget” is a sick joke full of lies and fallacies. it certainly has nothing to do with balancing the budget and everything to do with giving huge tax cuts to his real masters which are the big money interests that fund him and others. This is so obvious you would have to be truly clueless or delusional to not know this.

    1. Hmmm, maybe I’ll need to reconsider this Ryan plan… sounds pretty good to me now that you’ve summarized it (I’m for tax cuts and against deficit reduction…)

    2. Well shit, what does that make Team Blues proposed budget then?

      1. What proposed budget?

        1. Obama proposed a budget. But I think it was just a parody or something, given some of his recent comments…

          I’m sure he sent it to Congress with a little “;-D” appended…

          1. Obama has proposed three 10 year budgets all roughly the same except the deficit curve shifts up about $0.1 trillion per year in the following year’s plan. Eventually you will like one of their plans. Well, they’re not changing them anyway.

    3. “it certainly has nothing to do with balancing the budget and everything to do with giving huge tax cuts to his real masters which are the big money interests that fund him and others.”

      Yeah, by eliminating corporate tax deductions and credits, Ryan is really hooking up all of his fat cat buddies.

    4. Right. Because Dem’s aren’t beholden to any ‘big money interests’. (Cue union tantrum.)

      1. “(Cue union tantrum.)”

        and the sheep fornicating trial lawyers

        1. I see what you did there.

    5. I see the “adults” come out right on cue.

  15. Evul racist Tea Bagsterdz are destroying this country. The “adults” told me that.

  16. it certainly has nothing to do with balancing the budget and everything to do with giving huge tax cuts to his real masters which are the big money interests that fund him and others.

    Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  17. So are libertarians extreme nihilists or nihilistic extremists? You never know with these liberal columnists…

    1. Neolithic excrements?

    2. Nihilists! Fuck me. I mean, say what you like about the tenets of National Socialism, Dude, at least it’s an ethos.

      1. These men are Nihilists Donny, there is everything to be afraid of.

          1. The Big Lebowski really ties Libertarians together, does it not?

      2. OVER THE LINE!!!!!

  18. This article makes out like Krug and other liberal critics of Ryan’s plan have no substantive critique of Ryan’s plan and just went over-the-top ad hominem on him.

    This is not true. Krug has made detailed substantive critiques of Ryan’s plan, as have others. Krug posits that Ryan’s plan cuts revenues collected from high-income earners, slashes supports for low-income workers, and does nothing to reduce the deficit. You may agree or disagree with Krug’s critique, but it is not ad hominem. It is eminently substantive.

    So what gives? I think the truth of the matter is that these so-called “Libertarians” don’t want to see a reduction in government coercion and violence; they just want to see it “legitimized” with the imprimatur of “property rights,” as it was in the 19th Century before all the dirty unions and socialists imposed all these unreasonable things on our society like the minimum wage and hand guards on cutting machines.

    To this googly-eyed freak parade of Objectivists and Ron-Paulers, no police action would be too savage or violent so long as it is directed against the “moochers” and redounded to the benefit of the investor class. But that is an ugly message that they don’t want to air to loudly or clearly. So, instead, they resort to every distracting and indirect tactic available — playing the victim; “flopping” like a dirty basketball player; posing as the target of some vast and shadowy conspiracy.

    Krugman threw down his gauntlet on his blog just this morning. I quote:

    “So yes, I’m an ideologue. I believe in a more or less Rawlsian vision of society ? treat others as if you could have been them ? which implies a strong social safety net. I also believe that a mostly market economy, with public ownership and provision of services only in some limited areas, works best. Others will disagree with my values, my sense of how the world works, or both. Let’s not pretend that we share more than we do.”

    That’s the message from somebody who doesn’t keep his balls on ice in a tea cup. Why can’t the Harsanyis of the world take him on in his own terms, instead of giving us the same old tired “Charlie Bit My Finger!!!” [google it] routine again and again?

    1. So Krugnutz wasn’t using ad hominems, but calling someone a “google-eyed freak parade” like you just did is trenchant analysis.

      Have an ad homimem for yourself: Fuck off, statist.

    2. God, you are fucking retarded.

    3. danny’s correct so +1

      1. Sorry, OO – you mooed?

        1. He tweaks. Hey Orrin, what grade did you ever get to, and how does it feel like to be the only person on HnR who can’t use proper grammar?

          1. You know, now that you mention it, the commenters around here DO tend to spell and structure their sentences well.

            This is obviously the result of discrimination.

    4. Re: Danny,

      Krugman threw down his gauntlet on his blog just this morning. I quote:

      “So yes, I’m an ideologue. I believe in a more or less Rawlsian vision of society ? treat others as if you could have been them ? which implies a strong social safety net[…]”

      So treating others as one would treat oneself means stealing from others to give to some other others?

      No wonder you drool over this guy.

      1. Oh, Rawls. “Structure society as if you have no information or context whatsoever!” Such lunacy.

        1. I’m a big fan of Rawls as well. His version of “Wind Beneath My Wings” is still the best.

      2. “So yes, I’m an ideologue. I believe in a more or less Rawlsian vision of society ? treat others as if you could have been them ? which implies a strong social safety net[…]”

        What a f’n idiot Krugman is. It doesn’t imply anything of the sort. In fact, John Galt’s pledge fits entirely with Krugman’s depiction of Rawl’s philosophy:

        “I pledge by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.”

        Liberals like to think they’re so much more empathetic than everybody else. What horseshit! I’m more empathetic than they are. The difference is that they’re weak and unprincipled and I’m not. So when they imagine themselves in somebody else’s shoes who’s going through a rough time, they have they same reaction they would if it were them, ie, “Oh my god, the horror, I have to steal from somebody to make it better for me!”, whereas my reaction goes like this: “This sucks. I’m still not going to steal from anybody, though.”

        And mine is the better way.

        1. I tend to lean away from liberals in my thoughts yet I own a daycare, write for a magazine for families dealing with special needs and once started an autism charity – WITHOUT government money.

          Yet, I have had liberals tell me I lack compassion for others for simply believing in the individual as premise towards building a better world – in whatever form. However, I do no begrudge someone for not being charitable or caring. That is life.

          Nor do I believe in any form of coercion. Coercion is not a means towards a better world – just a superficial one. I am surprised liberals have not figured this out.

          One liberal who trolls my blog once called me a conservative piece of shit. He is unemployed and exhibits the rational thought of an asshole. He is good at pointing out all the ills (mostly blamed on Republicanism) and is big on the state as a way to ensure the same crap Krugman seems to believe about social safety nets. Not ONCE ever exploring perhaps it begins with the INDIVIDUAL.

          I have no problem with some regulation for some people. Assistance on some level is fair although I prefer it come from people themselves. However, it seems to me in North America we have bitten off waaaayyy too much we can chew. The insipid, wasteful stupidity I see on a daily basis with the government – in all its manifestations with union members, civil servants etc. – is breathtaking.

          The only extremists are them for eliminating and destroying the individual mind. Nothing can be more evil to the human spirit.

          1. Stop insulting anuses.

    5. The simple fact remains that the structure of the current system is unsustainable from a fiscal perspective and cannot be made to be sustained even through ever increasing progressive income taxation on those making above $250k. Although Kruggy may throw down his gauntlet in defense of this safety net he so prizes, he has NOT offered any substantive way to pay for it.

      FACT: The federal government could annex every dollar of income above $250k by each and every household in this country that qualifies as such and it would only amount to $1.412 trillion, not even enough to cover the current year’s deficit. Now, if the federal government were to annex every dollar in income above $250k (not allowing for any deductions whatsoever either), this would both cripple state income tax revenues, and the considerable impact upon the next year’s GDP without all of that additional investment money and with people now disincentivized from earning anything above $250k, would put us right back to square one, with a gaping deficit hole yet again.

      If Krugman were intellectually honest he would say we can either a) see our currently overly generous senior care programs that keep granny popping $800 in pills a fucking day, or b) we can raise taxes considerably across all classes, with a immensely heavy additional tax burden falling on the middle and working class in order to pay for current senior drug consumption and meetups in $2,000/day hospital rooms, without any guarantees that there will be the money to pay for that 35 y/o working class slob when he turns 65.

      1. “see our currently overly generous senior care programs that keep granny popping $800 in pills a fucking day”

        I know a guy on the corner who can hook granny up for much less than that.

    6. “This article makes out like Krug and other liberal critics of Ryan’s plan have no substantive critique of Ryan’s plan…”

      That’s the problem numb nuts. They have a critique of Ryan’s plan, just none of it substantive. Unless your idea of substance is premised on rainbows, unicorns, and the unsustainable status quo.

      1. Unless your idea of substance is premised on rainbows, unicorns, and the unsustainable status quo.

        Hey! What’s wrong with unicorns?

        1. Hey! What’s wrong with unicorns?

          Most of them are free-loading hippies. But I stereotype…

    7. Ah, Danny, you don’t disappoint.

      treat others as if you could have been them

      This isn’t Paulie Krugnuts position any more than it is your position. You believe in forcing others to act a certain way. Since you don’t want “corporate interests” or “the rich” to force you into things, you are either imbeciles or simply dishonest shit-bags. I tend to believe the latter.

    8. The top 1% of tax payers pay most of the taxes in this country. A large portion of the country pays no federal income taxes just FICA and medicare. So shut the fuck up about the rich not paying taxes. No country in the world has a more progressive income tax system or depends more on the top 1% of earners than the US.

      Second, shut the fuck up about the safety net. What does cutting ag subsidies and having HHS hire a few less 115K a year diversity planners have to do with the safety net? The government has exploded. And it hasn’t exploded because of welfare. It has exploded to produce a giant bureacracy giving out favors to the favored members of society. When you defend the government you are not defending the poor and the safety net. You are defending the rich and connected who are looting the government and running up debt that will someday be paid by the middle class and the poor.

      In short Danny shut the fuck up you are out of your element. At least try to live in the real world or don’t bother to come here. Go waste some other retarded dumb ass’s time rather than your own.

      1. Can we cut HUD, too? Housing for the poor may be a good idea, but the HUD has done a terrible job of it. Sell off a property to a private company, and everything starts improving.

        There’s self-interest, for you.

      2. Bravo with 1 caveat. It isn’t looting when it’s collusion.

    9. “Krug posits that Ryan’s plan cuts revenues collected from high-income earners”

      When Warren Buffet complains about only paying an 18% tax rate, when it is supposed to be 35%, because he is able to benefit from all the loopholes in the tax code. Ryan’s proposal will lower the rate from 35%, down to 25%, but also eliminate those loopholes. This would actually increase Buffet’s tax burden, because he would pay 25% instead of the 18% he claims to be paying now.

      1. Always assume the opposite of what Buffet and Soros say. They will do the opposite to profit off it because they have something called – Bueller, Bueller – LEVERAGE.

        Liberals who cite these guys are fools.

    10. You know what I’d love to see from the Krugster? How he sets up his own investments. How he structures his tax shelters. Based on his income, what should HIS marginal tax-rate be? I’ve never seen a lefty answer that question. What % of GDP should the public sector (state, local, feds, etc.) consume in their mission? These are basic questions that I’ve never seen a lefty like Krugman answer.

      And I am tired of millionaires like Krugman – who’ve never done a day of real work in their lives – railing against ‘the rich.’ Krugman’s the proverbial Orwellian pig walking on two feet. He IS ‘the rich.’

      1. But-but-but, he won a Nobel prize!

        1. You know who else……..

      2. Then let’s get Buffett’s tax returns and see why he’s so interested in getting a tax hike on the rich. Is he proposing to boost a tax he already avoids?

        1. I think it would help his life insurance biz.

      3. Same with rock stars.

        God bless Springsteen and Mellencamp, but the message is stale and somewhat hypocritical.

        Millionaire socialists I believe.

        If it is soooo bad to be rich pull a St. Francis of Assisi on me. Then perhaps I shall take you seriously.

        Until then, Hurts so good, come on baby make it hurst so good, because we were born to run!

        1. Neil Young too. He just won a Juno (Canadian award) for humanitarian stuff.

          Yet. He is silent on Obama.

      4. Re: TheZeitgeist

        And I am tired of millionaires like Krugman – who’ve never done a day of real work in their lives – railing against ‘the rich.’

        I must disagree with you here. Anyone who is rich (excluding inherited wealth) got that way by producing something of value. You may not find any value in anything that Krugman has produced, I certainly don’t, but that is irrelevant. Whether or not his method of production meets your definition of real work is also irrelevant.

        Someone (his employers) found the products of his mind (and let’s be honest, his opinions are entirely products of his mind since they have no basis in reality) to be valuable enough to pay him large sums of money in exchange for them. I agree with you that Krugman is a hypocrite, but I cannot agree with your implication that he has not earned his wealth.

    11. I love all the hate.

      The hate is a badge of honor.

      I wear the hate like a medal.

      I carry all your hatred like a lock from a maiden’s tress.

      All the F-words really let me know I hit home. It’s like the secondary explosions from an ammo bunker.

      1. Please stop feeding the troll.

        1. If any of these leftists tried to take my unalienable, common law rights away in person, I’d have to stop them. With extreme prejudice.

          1. Ignoring them does more damage to them than responding.

      2. Oh how I love to reward fucking tards with the badge of retarded honor. You’re a fucking moron, there are no real medals or honor in that.

      3. It’s like the secondary explosions from an ammo bunker.

        Probably just gas.

      4. There were admittedly a few “fuck you”s. But that’s largely because most people didn’t expect you to answer substantive critiques.

        I, however, presented you with a substantive critique regarding where exactly you plan on getting the revenue to pay for this particular status quo and showing that TEH RITCH!!1! don’t have enough money to pay for it. Go ahead, call for massive tax increases on the middle and working class if you’d like, intellectual honesty and candor is welcomed here. But, please, don’t defend the status quo spending without finding a sustainable revenue stream to fund it.

        1. This is the game the left plays. Last night on The Daily Show (or maybe the night before) they went from a ‘taxes on the rich’ rant to a graph that implied ALL the Bush tax cuts go away. So they talk about the rich, ‘home’ of 1/4th of the tax cut cost, and then implies it gets to the same place as Ryan. Stewart’s a charlatan.

      5. In other words, you’re a troll. Got it.

      6. WHOA BUDDY! You keep stroking it that furiously it’ll fall off.

    12. “provision of services only in some limited areas”

      Krugman’s definition of “limited” was concocted in Wonderland.

      1. Limited areas = All “areas” in stabile or near-stabile orbit of the Earth’s center of mass. (Definition subject to change.)

        If you don’t like our laws you can just move out…

        1. Going Galt on Mars is already the plan. Now to make it happen…

    13. To this googly-eyed freak parade of Objectivists and Ron-Paulers, no police action would be too savage or violent so long as it is directed against the “moochers” and redounded to the benefit of the investor class. But that is an ugly message that they don’t want to air to loudly or clearly

      I couldn’t agree more!

      *returns to phone call*

      Yes, yes, wire the next $100 billion to the following investment companies, let me know when you’re ready for the list.

    14. treat others as if you could have been them

      Do you imagine he means this bi-directionally?

    15. “flopping” like a dirty basketball player

      Vlade Divac is an aspiring politician back home, is he not?

    16. …treat others as if you could have been them…

      I already do this. If I was rich, I wouldn’t want a large portion of my money taken from me by force to be given to people who didn’t work as hard as I did. Therefore, I don’t want to take more from the rich. If When I was poor, I wouldn’t didn’t want to steal from people who earned more than me. I would did want to work harder to improve my conditions.

  19. I’m pretty sure Ryan’s plan would destroy all of creation, if enacted. Only a thin soup of elementary particles punctuated by the occasional black hole would remain.

    1. wait – no beer n babes? wtf…

    2. Gozer the Gozerian, Gozer the Destructor, Volguus Zildrohar, the Traveller has come! Choose and perish!

    1. This is old news, even if it just happened.

    2. If it is a measly 40,000, why can they not just levy an extra fee to fund it from those who use the Port?

      What a tool.

      1. He could have gotten the money from any number of businesses that use the port, but that would defeat his real purpose: bringing home the bacon.

      2. Really. If it’s that important to the state economy, why doesn’t the state want to pay for it?

      3. It does suck, but I think the problem is that they cant get on the Army Corp of Engineers list of projects without the study. SLD applies, but he wants the bigger prize of getting the harbor dredged by the Feds, and this is the first step.

    3. the double-whammy bringdown of worthless Republicans and South Carolina together

  20. I believe in a more or less Rawlsian vision of society ? treat others as if you could have been them ? which implies a strong social safety net.

    Lou Rawls is a welfare queen?

  21. A couple of reasons why us wild-eyed liberals aren’t crazy about Ryan’s plan:

    “In fact, the numbers in his plan show that his budget produces just $155 billion in real deficit reduction over ten years.

    That means that, despite proposing $4.3 trillion in what would be the most severe and wrenching budget cuts in U.S. history ? two-thirds of which would come from programs for people of low or moderate incomes ? the plan barely reduces deficits at all over the next decade. That’s because his budget cuts are offset by $4.2 trillion in tax cuts that would go disproportionately to those at the top.”

    In addition, “$1.3 trillion in “savings” from the official CBO baseline that comes merely from the fact that the Ryan plan reflects the costs of current policy in Iraq and Afghanistan [that, is the Obama Administration’s plan, if they stick to it, to end these unneccessary wars]. … Ryan himself said earlier this year on National Public Radio ? in attacking President Obama’s 2012 budget proposal for not doing enough to reduce deficits ? that simply showing the costs of current policy in Iraq and Afghanistan produces “phantom savings” from an anomalous baseline, not real deficit reduction.”

    Also, there’s “$200 billion in lower interest savings due to an error by Chairman Ryan’s staff in calculating interest savings.”

    All this via James Horney here: http://www.cbpp.org/cms/index.cfm?fa=view&id=3458

    And, of course, there’s the fact that Ryan himself voted for one budget-buster after another in the Bush year, most importantly the Medicare prescription drug plan.

    Is that “reason” enough to think the guy’s full of it?

    1. Re: Alan Vanneman,

      A couple of reasons why us wild-eyed liberals aren’t crazy about Ryan’s plan[…]

      You’re a wild-eyed liberal???

      Well, beat me with a stick and call me a pi?ata! I would never have imagined it!

      1. “Well, beat me with a stick and call me a pi?ata!”

        Well, why not? That’s your job, right, pi?ata* man?

        *Congrats on mastering the enye technology! Way to stay in character!

    2. “two-thirds of which would come from programs for people of low or moderate incomes”

      Obamacare will cut Medicare reimbursement by $15 TRILLION according to the 2010 Financial Statement of the United States Government, published by the Treasury Department in December.

      What was that about “severe and wrenching cuts”?

      1. $15 trillion in one year? Or ten? Don’t think so. And Medicare goes to every geezer, not just the low and moderate folks.

        1. With cuts to Medicare like that, the term doesn’t matter. As to your second sentence, you just prove my point. It WILL hurt low and moderate income people.

          1. Worse, the Obamaboids lied about it constantly the summer of 2009. I had to Google or the O-bots simply wouldn’t believe it. My favorite quote “I work from home and have MSNBC on all day long and I listen to all his speeches. That’s bullshit, there are no cuts to Medicare”.

            I only figured it out myself when I noticed all the Blue Hairs at the town halls. I had no clue why they were protesting (great job, media).

    3. Is that “reason” enough to think the guy’s full of it?

      DRINK

      Also, this = “liberals don’t like Ryan’s budget proposals because they don’t REALLY reduce the deficit + also, because the poor, children, etc. + also war is bad”

      OH, also =

      “and where were these Fiscal Conservative Republicans back when BUSH was spending like a drunken sailor? WAAHHH WAHHHH!! NOT FAIR!! ITS OUR TURN NOW!!! ”

      All of these things may in fact be (more or less) the case.

      (aside from the last one, which despite being the dumbest fucking thing I’ve ever heard is actually incredibly popular as a liberal retort: sort of the political, “I know YOU are but what am I?”

      (I also find the, “disproportionately @ the top” line maybe unimpressive. The bullshit here is that *letting people keep their own money* constitutes “Robbing the poor”, apparently – because in the *perfect* world it would be redistributed via enormous entitlement schemes which as we all know are a far more efficient employment of capital than letting it spread around via wages, investments, property etc…)

      …That said, the simple retort to these hair-splitting complaints is, “Yeah? So what? Your shit is even worse – nay, pathetically insufficient by contrast. STFU or give me something better.”

      The “better” they seem to offer are generally stalking horses; they’ll moan symbolically about defense spending, but find me any liberal congressperson actually voting to close bases and shut down contracts in their own districts. Don’t make me laugh. The only thing liberals want is to tax the @(#*$ rich, as though that’s the panacea to lacking any philosophy of governance whatsoever.

      I think the most accurate criticism of Ryans plan is, “It’s not nearly enough, so little as to be meaningless = yet this is still WAY too much for congress to even contemplate. Political Cowardice rules the day”

    4. In fact, the numbers in his plan show that his budget produces just $155 billion in real deficit reduction over ten years

      I thought that was a feature, not a bug, from a liberal perspective. But if that’s the case, and you’re genuinely interested in a fiscally sustainable gov’t, pray tell, how do YOU plan on getting the revenue portion to not dramatically exceed the spending portion on an annual basis? Please, details are welcome here as I am a bit wonkish.

    5. Tax cuts? Who’s getting tax cuts? You do realize that unless all people were paying the same percentage and some group then was given lower rates, that no one gets tax cuts?

    6. In addition, “$1.3 trillion in “savings” from the official CBO baseline that comes merely from the fact that the Ryan plan reflects the costs of current policy in Iraq and Afghanistan [that, is the Obama Administration’s plan, if they stick to it, to end these unneccessary wars].

      Wha… I think I see what you did there.

    7. A quote from the site –

      “”[The Center’s] statistical work is absolutely impeccable. If you care about [fiscal issues], check CBPP’s site regularly for updates.”
      – New York Times columnist Paul Krugman

      Hahahahaha. Someone who makes up stats as he goes loves them. Image that.

      How were’s the liberal plan by the way? The one Obama just talked about that included more spending and no details on anything? Or the plan that his comission came up with taht the liberals total ignores like it never existed.

    8. “That’s because his budget cuts are offset by $4.2 trillion in tax cuts that would go disproportionately to those at the top.”

      Kind of hard for tax cuts to to go anywhere but “disproportionately to those at the top” since those at the top pay disproportionately more taxes.

      After all, if you pay income taxes, then you pay infinitely more income taxes than 40% – 50% of American households. Infinitely more is pretty disproportionate.

  22. all this griping over only $38 billion? 1%?

    This is fucked up. Liberals have shown themselves to be ideological extremists, except with them it’s all the extremism, none of the serious ideology. It’s all basically just partisanship now.

    The liberal vision is failing massively. And people aren’t buying their bullshit anymore. Liberalism is really only thriving because they had managed to get a foothold in power in the first place and the perception of the American populace’s actual liberal tendencies is overestimated.

    By liberalism of course, I mean this more modern social democrat-style of government. The more classical, more JFK-like liberalism had a point and was meaningful – as Tony says, it does make sense to ACTUALLY expand freedom in a MEANINGFUL way to most citizens. But all this crap now is WAY OFF that supposed goal, it’s just knee-jerk socialism and partisanship. Just listen to liberals, they barely make sense anymore; watch the Bill Maher show – all their rhetoric is just repeating the word “corporations” a lot with barely enough verbs and prepositions to make it seem like it’s gramatically correct.

    How the hell is the entire nation going bankrupt going to help anyone? If the government fails, society is likely to collapse very thoroughly – if we’re reduced to dealing with Lord Humongous and his band of marauders trying to steal our gasoline that isn’t really “expanding freedom for everyone”.

    I’d like to see Tony explain this one.

    I’ve said I’d be willing to pay more in taxes… a lot more – if they would ACTUALLY cut the budget SIGNIFICANTLY.

    I mean can’t we at least change the SOcial security collection so that the money collected actually gets saved instead of spent? But no, not even that. Even if we do that little thing we’re evil capitalist pigs working for the corporations.

    1. oh yeah, I wanted to say that $500,000 needed, to pay our debts and unfunded liabilities, from every man woman and child is not “actually expanding freedom” or “helping” anyone out in any way

    2. Re: Edwin,

      How the hell is the entire nation going bankrupt going to help anyone? If the government fails, society is likely to collapse very thoroughly[…]

      Ha ha ha!

      Oh, you’re being serious…

      HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!!

      1. if the federal government collapses, state governments are likely to collapse. That would end the basic property-recognition mechanisms we have. Even if you are able to supply a a plat with a deed, it might not mean shit to anyone. It would start with homeless people squatting, then maybe poor people moving into larger places, esp. where the owner doesn’t actually live their year round. I could easily imagine the mexicans and other illegals around here forcibly taking nicer, bigger houses/condos, and why the hell wouldn’t they? I fucking would. Fuck your fat glarbo spoiled ass, you don’t need fucking 3,000 square feet. And only fishermen need boats, especially 35+ foot yachts.

        Or hell, you could easily fake some plats to take some land on the sly.

        there’s a mllion things people could do

        without some enforced consensus, property rights have trouble being maintained. The history of the world has shown what that’s like. Hint: there have been at leats 30,000 wars in human history.

        Not saying it WOULD happen for sure, but might. And there’s plenty on the scale between complete order and a slow, oppressive chaos.

        1. Re: Edwin,

          if the federal government collapses, state governments are likely to collapse. That would end the basic property-recognition mechanisms we have.

          My property recognition system would still work when and after government collapses, Edwin – not if. They are called: Smith, Wesson and Killer the pitbull.

          1. I hope you have plenty of ammo, because what’s coming is not going to be a few homeless people, but hordes of desperate angry people.

            1. Leftist love spouting these threats, but if the poor had the sort of drive required to really take over, they wouldn’t be poor in the first place. They’ll just keep eating McDonalds and shitting out more retarded, fatter versions of themselves.

              1. I don’t think it’s a matter of drive, I just see things as getting so bad that people who have been receiving entitlements will be cut off due to economic collapse and this will lead to prolonged rioting and food marches.

                1. Fortunately, the productive currently outnumber the non-productive. And most of the non-productive are too old to be any real threat. I’m sure we’ll be fine.

              2. It’s not the “poor” it’s those NIMBY zombies that are your neighbors who are going to go feral when food and fuel become scarce. If not your neighbors per se, then the next neighborhood over. Evenutally someone who is unprepared is going to realize brutal violence is better than starving.

            2. Re: Len,

              I hope you have plenty of ammo, because what’s coming is not going to be a few homeless people, but hordes of desperate angry people.

              We’ll be ready. Don’t worry about me – worry about YOU.

              1. this is the anarchist version of the Santa Claus belief

              2. I’m not worried about you. But I am worried about Killer. There’s gonna be more than a few unemployed SWAT goons running around. Just sayin.

                1. As for me, my survival plan goes something like this…

                  “Come and listen to my story bout a man named Abdul

                  A poor bedouin who barely kept his family full

                  And then one day he was shootin at some Joos

                  and up through the ground come a bubbling ooze.

        2. if the federal government collapses, state governments are likely to collapse.

          That wouldn’t surprise me, given how dependant all states really are on federal funding.

          The problem is that, ultimately, it really doesn’t matter. We’ve watched both parties try to prevent a reversion to the mean for over ten years after dotbomb blew up, and it’s because they either don’t understand or aren’t willing to acknowledge that ANY pullback in the GDP equation is going to lead to pain in the short term. And because Americans, for the most part, are unwilling to deal with pain in the short-term, our worthless leaders in Congress have been playing this “kick-the-can” game in an effort to put the day of reckoning off long enough so someone else can deal with it after they’re dead and gone.

          Fundamentally, our society is broken. We’ve gone from a country who understood 100 years ago that there’s no free lunch, to one that believes the distribution of free lunches is a sustainable revenue-generating enterprise. Typically, the only thing that corrects such a dysfunctional cultural mindset IS collapse.

  23. treat others as if you could have been them

    I give up.

    What the fuck is that even supposed to mean, Krugabe?

    1. It means that we could’ve grown to be $3,000/day costing seniors if we weren’t stressed and worked to death by 45 in order to transfer all of our wealth and income to the current seniors so they could take 125 day cruises around the world while riding on their hoverounds, enjoying endless lobster buffets, and bitching about how they don’t get enough free shit from their yet to be born great great great grandchildren and that nice colored gentleman in the white house.

    2. Apparently he gets off being robbed at gunpoint.

    3. I think all libertarians treat others as if we “could have been them.” If your situation sucks because you made crappy decisions, you get what you deserve, just as we would, and I don’t understand why we need to save people from their own mistakes. That doesn’t mean we wouldn’t support their correction or improvement, merely that we shouldn’t be forced to subsidized them.

      If your situation sucks due to misfortune, disaster, danger, policy or handicap beyond your control, we will gladly give to charities to help you as much as possible, and would give much more if the government wasn’t taking 30% of our incomes. That does not require force of government or faith in the supposed good nature of bureaucracy. Once the Left stops seeing the government as a charity organization and starts recognizing the inequality that results from welfare dependency and the moral hazard that results from subsidizing failure, maybe they will start attaining some of their supposed “values”.

  24. what would be the most severe and wrenching budget cuts in U.S. history

    *stops reading*

  25. Extremism in the defense of solvency is no vice.

    1. the problem is what’s actually perfectly reasonable is being called extremism

  26. I asked for 10 trillion and I agreed to 3 trillion. Hey, I cut the budget 7 trillion dollars!

    1. [slow clap]

  27. solution for federal:

    end social security. Only the ‘tardest of the feebs can’t save up for retirement. It’s a false “need”. I’ve hired countless wetbacks and they manage to keep their shit together enough to buy ipods and cell phones and still have save up a lot of money. If you’re too busy knockin’ up chicks and snorting coke to not sdave for retirement, you don’t get shit. Condoms take away all the feeling but just deal with it ass, or expect to pay that $500/month child support.

    ban unions from being in government jobs. even give an exemption from the union laws for caompanies when they’re doing jobs for the gov

    end medicare/medicaid and relevant regulations. Replace with somewhat generous voucher system

    end farm subsidies, public radio subsidies, education subsidies, and all other special interest subsidies

    make constitutional amendment making it legal for government to tax ownership of real estate and vehicles. Tax leisure boats and expensive real estate and expensive cars. Even tax vacations – make people prove they did business if they want to claim it was for business. Get the IRS to be fierce.
    Tax golf courses

    cut the military budget. Save only the most important technologies like the osprey. Look for and prosecute more fiercely any contract shenanigans. Make sure you put somebody who commited some crime in prison. Advertise his jailing to all defense contractors and all in the military who are in charge of that sort of thing. If he gets ass-raped or stabbed in jail, again, advertise it.

    Hell, literally go up to someone cheating the governent and kick his ass, and advertise it. I guess I’d be the president with the largest criminal record.

    Raise taxes on the rich, but lower corporate taxes and taxes on the middle class.

    In other words actually tax RICH PEOPLE. everything else is frivolous and potentially harmful to the economy. There’s more than enough money directly in the hands of the rich and the government has enough power to actually squeeze the money they need out of the rich. Nothing fancy is needed, except maybe the above-mentioned constitutional amendment

    1. Re: Edwin,
      Not bad except for this:

      make constitutional amendment making it legal for government to tax ownership of real estate and vehicles.

      Talk about a housing meltdown….

    2. Re: Edwin,

      Tax leisure boats and expensive real estate and expensive cars.

      Yeah, surely government is going to limit itself to just taxing “expensive” real estate and vehicles. Yeah, sure.

      1. could be written in said amendment, based on boat size, land size, house size, etc. Or starting at a certain value amount and adjusted for inflkation. Or as multiples of labor hours

        there’s no limit to what can be written. That’s why we have language.

        1. Re: Edwin,

          could be written in said amendment, based on boat size, land size, house size, etc.

          And that will insure that people will make boats a tad smaller, and partition their houses into separate sections, etc., etc., etc.

          1. “partition their houses into separate sections, etc., etc., etc.”

            uhhh… what?
            A single family house is a single family house. You could in theory deed separate parts of it separately through a strawman but your whole original lot would still only be allowed single family and my hypothetical tax would still apply.

            Haven’t you heard of zoning laws?

            And your example below about renting the boat out to yourself would be a form of outright fraud.

            You really don’t know a lot about laws and legal theory, from what I’ve seen here and in the comments to other articles. I’m not trying to insult you here, but why don’t you first try to learn about such things before you talk about them? If you want to have meaningful conversations you first have to be knowledgeable

            1. Oh, I know just how laws work; Sheer brutality, imagining you can control everyone everywhere, you statist fuck!

      2. or labor hours with more general but detailed descriptions of what a man’s life should be like and what goes a little bit or a lot beyond that in terms of a basket of goods. They do similar things with inflation statistics.

        1. Re: Edwin,

          […]or labor hours with more general but detailed [sic] descriptions of what a man’s life should be like and what goes a little bit or a lot beyond that in terms of a basket of goods.

          Pretty much telling people not to progress beyond this point. That will do wonders to revenue…

      3. I can tell you right off the bat that if you own a powered boat longer than 12 feet and you aren’t a fisherman or renting it out for other people then it’s a luxury, and it isn’t unreasonable to ask that you pay taxes on it.

        If you’re going to complain about that, the you’ll be proving that you are indeed a plutocrat saying “I’ve got mine, fuck you”

        1. Re: Edwin,

          I can tell you right off the bat that if you own a powered boat longer than 12 feet and you aren’t a fisherman or renting it out for other people then it’s a luxury, and it isn’t unreasonable to ask that you pay taxes on it.

          Well, that would make people buy several 12FT boats instead of yatchs, or incorporate and then rent the yatch to themselves.

          Face it, Edwin: People Act with purpose, and people are SMART. Your efforts at making man to your own likeness are bound to fail, as you’re clearly NOT God.

          1. who said anything about making men into my own image or playing at god?

            Do you even read what I’ve written? clearly I’m not a fan of our current federal spend-like-a-hog system, which is why I’ve proposed massive cuts and higher taxes to avoid federal bankruptcy

            why you gotta turn everything into some weird moral claim or ulterior motive? Oh, I know why, because you don’t have any serious argument

          2. “Well, that would make people buy several 12FT boats instead of yatchs, or incorporate and then rent the yatch to themselves.”

            They’re free to do that. I encourage all people to get what write-offs they can, and even not report some money if they can manage it.

            Talking from the standpoint of the federal government and how it might be saved by collecting taxes isn’t the same thing as my personal feelings on taxes.

        2. But why stop there? People can easily eat hamburger, so why not charge tax on steak? Those plutocrat fat-cat rich people are over here eating better food than us, so tax em.

          Hey, edwin, I’ve got an idea. Why don’t you send in every dollar of disposable income you have to the federal government to pay down the debt and leave my money and property alone.

          Calling someone a plutocrat because they have more than you is class warfare at it’s finest.

          Now go get your shinebox.

        3. hahaha “plutocrat”. Reminds me of the quote from Stalinist lackey Grigory Zinoviev about Kulaks, “We are fond of describing any peasant who has enough to eat as a kulak.”

          I wouldn’t put it past the statist douchebags in this country to resort to such thinking with regard to who is wealthy or a “plutocrat”.

        4. You know what else is a “luxury”? Anything more than 800 calories per day and a minimum water ration.

    3. Yeah, edwin. Tax. Tax. Tax.

      I’ve got a better idea: eliminate the income tax and replace it with a sales tax.

      Eliminate all subsidies and any dept and/or govt function not designated in the Constitution.

      Dismantle Social Security and stop subsidizing medical costs through medicare and medicaid. Make it easier for overseas trained physicians to come and practice in the US and eliminate caps placed on enrollment at our public medical schools.

    4. Yes, bring me back! I was a great success! At killing the American yacht building industry.

      1. If the tax is reasonable plenty of money can be raised while rich fatties still get to keep their boats. I know for a fact these guys would not part with their boats.

        And since the tax would be federal and on the ownership of any boat, paying the tax would be the only option if one wanted to own a boat. Except for a few people on the Northeast coast of Maine or the northern edges of michigan who could maybe house the boat in canada. Even then, you could write the amendment allowing the gov. to tax the boat no matter where it is as long as the guy retains his citizenship

        1. Uh, the gov’t paid out more in unemployment benefits to the former yacht builders than they collected from this tax. Do you recognize any rights as being inalienable?

          1. And envy does qualify as a right.

          2. Do you recognize any rights as being inalienable?

            Nope. To many, rights are just actions the government says you can do.

  28. Sidney Harman is dead.

    I wonder if his heirs will have to pay capital gains when they sell Newsweek for $2?

  29. “Socialism, like the ancient ideas from which it springs, confuses the distinction between government and society. As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at all. We disapprove of state education. Then the socialists say that we are opposed to any education. We object to a state religion. Then the socialists say that we want no religion at all. We object to a state-enforced equality. Then they say that we are against equality. And so on, and so on. It is as if the socialists were to accuse us of not wanting persons to eat because we do not want the state to raise grain.” –Bastiat, The Law, 1850

    I’m sure we’ll still be hearing the same tripe in 2050 and beyond.

    1. Bastiat is both entertaining and utterly depressing to read. Entertaining because insightful and succinct; depressing because all of his insights have been utterly ignored except by a powerless minority.

  30. I’m sorry, but since when is it news for the liberals and proponents of Big Government to label their opponents as extremists?

    1. Since they forgot about calling us racists?

  31. The GOP’s plan shows its hand immediately by taking tax hikes off the table.

    Why? Just doing nothing and letting the Bush cuts expire would take care of 75% of the problem over 5 years and 30% over 10. Why is this off the table when it’s an obvious and painless chunk of the solution?

    The answer is because Republicans don’t care about debt. They like debt. Because their goal is to destroy the social safety net, as it has been all along. Debt is their latest excuse. This is starve the beast in action, and they’ve decided now is the time of the crisis.

    Only I think even Americans are smart enough to see through this blatant bullshit. Give the rich even more handouts while making the poor and elderly pay for the debt problem Republicans themselves created? It won’t take a rhetorical genius to explain this shitty bargain. Which is good, because all we have is Obama.

    1. Oh, yeah, the idea of eliminating just, say, Social Security, has some real traction in Republican circles right now. They’re chomping at the bit for that one.

      Hahaha.

      1. Bush tried. They may be ideologues but they know how to pick their battles. I expect they’ll get back to SS after the next republican recession.

        1. “Bush tried. They may be ideologues but they know how to pick their battles.”

          Oh, I see now. I’ve been wondering why the size and scope of government has been steadily receding over the last century. It’s because all those Republicans were such successful strategists who shared the common goal of shrinking government.

          1. Nobody has a goal of shrinking government except you guys. Because you actually believe the slogans the GOP has sold you. Shrinking government doesn’t actually mean anything, really.

            1. OK Tony, fine, tax the rich more, tax me more

              If you get to do that, can we seriously reduce the federal budget?

              if you want to get reasonability you have to give reasonability.

              If you’re going to stick by EVERY LAST one of your pet social programs you’re only slightly less of an unrealistic, blind ideologue than libertarians are

              and your numbers as to the effectiveness of a 4% point increase in the income tax are WAY WAY overly optimistic

              1. Raising taxes is certainly not everything, but it isn’t nothing. Debt is the right’s obsession anyway–liberals are upset Obama isn’t ignoring it totally and focusing on jobs. If they are actually serious, which they aren’t, they would entertain the idea of at least letting the Bush cuts expire instead of cutting those taxes MORE and making poor and old people pay for it.

            2. Shrinking government doesn’t actually mean anything, really.

              Jesus-fucking-Christ you’re a world-class dumbass.

        2. We can only hope.

        3. A great many Republicans (and for damned sure most all the elected ones) love welfare programs… certain welfare programs, anyways.

          There is no sinister cabal of Republicans meeting in some underground bunker coordinating the destruction of the “social safety net”. Trust me, I actually, personally know quite a few real life Republicans. If only.

          1. Not according to The Simpsons. Even aliens are present at the secret meetings.

    2. “The GOP’s plan shows its hand immediately by taking tax hikes off the table.”

      Why should tax hikes be on the table? The government takes in plenty of money, they just don’t use it effectively and efficiently. Once the feds go through each department, and take steps to operate at a lower cost, then I might listen to any arguments for raising taxes. Until then, they can kiss my pasty, sun deprived ass.

      1. Do you really think there are trillions of dollars of waste fraud and abuse to be found? It’s not your taxes getting raised, why do you care?

        1. “It’s not your taxes getting raised, why do you care?”

          So, it’s OK for the government to single out a group, just as long as I’m not a part of that group?

          Why do you care about cuts to Medicaid or Social Security? It’s not YOUR Medicaid or Social Security being cut.

          I guess we should just assume that you are a beneficiary of the multitude of government programs you have been advocating for.

        2. And yes, their is a ridiculous amount of waste and duplicity in the federal government. Also, the feds don’t need to be involved in half of what they are doing, much of which can be performed by state government.

        3. Tony, if it were 1776, you would have looked great in a red coat. Why not leave the productive people alone, and help the poor figure out how to earn a living? What a minute, LBJ ended poverty. So what are you bitching about?

        4. So Tony, explain how the government has record revenue but is still in a defict.

        5. I do know that $50 billion was wasted LAST YEAR ALONE one but ONE (un, uno) federal program.

          So yes, in the aggregate, I do think that there is trillions of waste at the hands of our government overlords.

        6. SO you ARE a class warefare fuckwad. I mean you must be if you want to raise taxes only on the rich for that paltry 78 billion dollars. Here’s a fucking idea, how bout we go back to 1999 spending levels. Old people weren’t dying in the streets, teh childrenz were getting their education, and poor people were still getting their welfare and medicaid.

          1. I should point out that the dotcom bubble was providing a lot of revenue in 1999, so that Clinton’s “balanced” budget wouldn’t have held up during a time of normal expansion.

    3. Re: Tony,

      The GOP’s plan shows its hand immediately by taking tax hikes off the table.

      Why? Just doing nothing and letting the Bush cuts expire would take care of 75% of the problem over 5 years[…]

      Yes, because in the world of the Statist fuck, the relationship between tax rate and revenue is linear.

      The answer is because Republicans don’t care about debt. They like debt.

      All of them (Dems and Repubs) like debt.

      Because their goal is to destroy the social safety net, as it has been all along.

      Yeah, that must be it. Forget about the fact that such safety nets depend on people perniciously and unwaveringly producing something so someone else enjoys it, something that goes against human nature (just by looking at the great number of freeloaders that populate the welfare states.) Nah, it’s just not enough taxation. Right.

      1. Hey, it’s our money!

    4. You think the Democrats are proposing to raise taxes on the middle class? Bwa ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

      2012 will make 2010 look like a Dem landslide if so. None of the Dem ‘leaders’ will propose this. Oh, they’ll say it will solve the problem and field a chart. But will they be for it? Bwa ha ha ha ha ha

    5. …Give the rich even more handouts while making the poor and elderly pay for the debt problem…

      BWAHAHAHAHA!

      In Tony’s fucked up head, when a thief decides not to take your car, but only the radio in it, he’s actually giving you the car. Who knew!

      1. You have to know that this ridiculous exaggeration used as a catch-all excuse for being completely fiscally insane isn’t convincing to non-true-believers. If taxation is theft, then all taxation is theft. Anarchy doesn’t appeal to many.

        1. You do realize we’re not majoritarians, right? Do you think we really care what the majority thinks?

          Plus, government could be financed volitionally. Just pointing this out.

    6. Gotta love the allowing people to keep their money as “handouts” theme. It’s just so intellectually honest.

      1. They want to cut taxes for the rich MORE. It wasn’t their money. It was the people of the US’s. It’s welfare for the rich.

        1. Holy shit, we got ourselves a regular Michale Moore here. Please don’t tell me that you actually think that wealth is collectively owned, no that takes the time to comment here can possibly be that stupid and deluded.

          1. Please don’t tell me that you actually think that wealth is collectively owned, no that takes the time to comment here can possibly be that stupid and deluded.

            A Serious Man, have you met Tony?

        2. Ummm…what? Did the rich go steal it out of people’s wallets?

    7. It’s good to know you hate poor and middle class tax payers, since that’s where the bulk of the tax cuts went. Asshole.

  32. Tony,
    liberals act like tax increases have no effect other than to increase government revenue. That is not how it will work nor has it has worked in the past. Increasing taxes always results in a smaller tax base because many of the people who will pay those higher taxes will funnel their money into lower tax and tax-free vehicles. Plus, even those who do pay more taxes will have less to spend and invest resulting in lower speding, lower jobs and lower GDP. Hence the article Gillspie and Veronique wrote just a little while ago showing that despite changes in tax rates, tax revenue never really deviates from 20% of GDP. What DOES change is the GDP, it goes down. That means less actual revenue.

    Say what you will about the tenets of the republican party, but at least they have the Laffer curve, DUDE.

    Not only is taxing people at higher rates not fair (they receive the same public services and pay more taxes than others) or right, but it also doesn’t achieve its goal which in this case (as you claim) is to increase actual revenue. When you then factor in that politicians will always spend whatever they get to increase their influence and election chances, your argument for higher taxes fails on all fronts.

    1. Well said. Tony also seems to forget that people that some people making over 250K, like say doctors – will just decide to work less since making over 250K would have any reward.

      No to mention it hurts small business who will hire less and so on.

      But that’s ok in Tony’s world – it’s someone else tax problem.

      1. Bullshit! We’ve had MUCH higher rates and nobody has ever decided to downgrade their economic class because of tax rates. Also, supply-sider bullshit is…. bullshit. Flimsy bullshit excuses for never, ever, ever raising taxes on the rich.

        1. There’s an entire profession – tax accountancy – designed to minimize one’s tax liability. What do you think Warren Buffett is paying his stable of tax accountants for except precisely for when the government comes asking for more?

          1. So let’s suck dry the ones who are too poor to afford hotshot accountants!

            1. You’re an idiot. The rich still pay more even with their accountants.

              1. First, there’s a huge amount of legalized evasion. Still, I don’t care if they do pay more. They should pay more. Why should the old and poor pay more and not the rich if we’re meant to sacrifice for the sake of the deficit? It doesn’t make sense.

            2. So let’s suck dry the ones who are too poor to afford hotshot accountants!

              Looks like your “the government should take care of everybody!” philosophy came back and bit you in the ass, didn’t it?

            3. You sound like a regular looter, Tony. Have you met Mr. Mouch and Mr. Meigs?

        2. Flimsy bullshit excuses for never, ever, ever raising taxes on the rich.

          That’s because the rich already pay more than their fair share.

          1. Ah, nevermind.

    2. It is more fair than asking the poor and elderly to take cuts instead.

      This anti-tax bullshit is so tired. It can’t make sense to you. So what, we’re stuck with the lowest upper rates in 50 years forever? Because the rich will find ways to evade anyway… I think we can find ways to make revenue increases actually increase revenue.

      1. Why can’t the elderly take cuts again?

        1. CAT FOOD
          RAODZ
          SOMALIA

          I think that about sums up why old people can’t take cuts in anything whatsoever.

        2. AARP

        3. Because they don’t have to. And they won’t unless the Republicans succeed in turning this country into a banana republic, for freedom.

          1. Please clarify that last sentence.

      2. Yes, it is more fair to ask the poor and elderly to take cuts. Do you know why?

        BECAUSE IT ISN’T THEIR MONEY!

        1. It is if the people via their government give it to them. Whose money is it? Some rich guy claiming it? Him and what army? What law makes that money his?

          1. It is if the people via their government give it to them.

            In other words, you only wish to do good when the governent holds a gun to your head. Spoken just like an idiot college student.

          2. I can’t believe it has taken me this long to realize I am talking to a wall.

            Tony, Do you have a job? If so, did you and your employer agree to compensation in exchange for your labor? When you get your paycheck, does the amount on your pay that you now have ownership of, equal the amount of compensation your labor earned? No, it does not. Why? Because some of that money, your money, was transferred to the government, who transferred it to someone else. In the case of entitlements, that someone else did nothing to earn the money generated by your labor, except for maybe breathing, and having a pulse.

            Money is property, in the same way a home, a car and the clothes on your back are property. You either believe in property rights, or you believe that anything and everything you own, can become community property, if that is the will of the people.

            1. I have a feeling he believes the latter. Can we recreate the Soviet Union, just to show him? Or send him to North Korea, where it sure isn’t the capitalists keeping them poor.

      3. “…Because the rich will find ways to evade anyway… I think we can find ways to make revenue increases actually increase revenue.”

        Firstly, Paul’s plan is to get rid of the loopholes so there can be no more “evasion” as you so crudely put it. But since there are no deductions, you can lower the actual rate. Otherwise, everyone will pay more. Getting rid of loopholes and lowering the rate would increase revenue by broadening the tax base, reducing deductions (and the special interests that are served with deductions and credits etc) and simplifying the process. Simplifying taxes is a boon to everyone since it now doesn’t require high priced accounting services, makes it easier to predict one’s tax burden and plan ahead, and will reduce the need for so many IRS agents and audits. in terms you can understand – less cost, more efficient, less “evasion”, more revenue.

        But of course, in your perpetual dishonesty you ignored this point of ryan’s plan and said merely that he was trying to give tax breaks to the rich. then in the course of your arguments against the rich you say that we need to find a way to keep them from “evading” their taxes. Well, the way you do that is to reduce deductions and lower the rate.

        It is quite entertaining to watch you argue yourself into agreement with Paul Ryan as you demagogue the “evils of the rich”

        1. Oh yeah and one more thing, Tony, if you still think you can increase taxes forever on the rich, there is one way they can “evade” those taxes that no government policy can stop – LEAVING. Which is already happening

          1. The Soviet Union didn’t really allow emigration. East Germany sure didn’t.

            But they can’t *make* me work.

  33. Shorter Spaceno: the rich have options, unlike Tony.

  34. Here’s my idea:

    1) Totally and completely annihilate and dismantle most of

    http://www.usa.gov/Agencies/Fe…..ndex.shtml

    …, starting with the Department of Education, just to piss Chicago off.

    2) Eradicate absolutely the scourges that are Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.

    3) Dismantle into non-existence all components and governmental affiliates of the Federal Reserve.

    How does that sound?

    1. Here are the first to go in my world –

      Department of Agriculture (USDA)
      Department of Commerce (DOC)
      Department of Defense (DOD)
      Department of Defense Inspector General
      Department of Education (ED)
      Department of Energy (DOE)
      Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
      Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
      Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
      Department of Justice (DOJ)
      Department of Labor (DOL)
      Department of State (DOS)
      Department of the Interior (DOI)
      Department of the Treasury
      Department of Transportation (DOT)
      Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)

      1. Note: I hope I don’t get flak for the joke, since I left the Department of Defense on the list.

        1. We do needs some defense, just not as much as we have. Since the Constitution provides for unlimited Navy, unlike the two year appropriation business for the Army, lets cut away most of the Army (and Marines, too). Downsize the Navy and Air Force, but keep them effective. Why do we have a Coast Guard? Couldn’t it be covered by the Navy? Why do we have such a jury-rigged national guard?

  35. Great list, but I’d leave the Treasury in there, but end the Federal Reserve. Gold and silver coin as legal tender in payment of debt – it’s the law.

    1. Yeah, I forgot to remove that from the list. Although free banking would be cool.

      1. The Treasury isn’t exactly a central bank.

        I think we should go to a silver standard, because we have enough that (with a little deflation) we could go to an absolute standard, with each dollar in circulation backed up by X amount of silver. Probably will never happen, though…

  36. If you tell a religious person or mystic that you don’t believe in anything supernatural, they will conclude that you are a nihilist.

    If you tell a liberal that you don’t support any involuntary redistribution of wealth, they will conclude that you are a nihilist.

    1. Liberals don’t believe in involuntary redistribution of wealth. They just realize that there are levels of voluntariness, and at the multi-million population level, voluntariness means democratic government.

      1. Liberals don’t believe in involuntary redistribution of wealth.

        Progressives, on the other hand…

      2. “They just realize that there are levels of voluntariness”

        Are you joking? “No, it’s only partially mandatory volunteer work….” Really, you can’t be this stupid. I refuse to believe it.

        1. How do you have voluntariness on the scale of national projects… total unanimity? Or are we just not allowed to do things on that scale?

          1. Why do we need national projects? What things need to be done at a national scale?

            States and communities will find ways to maintain roads and infrastructure on their own. This would become even easier if the federal government didn’t suck up so much wealth.

            I would much rather pay my current level of taxation to my state government, than the federal government.

            1. Sooo social contract is OK at the state level? You do realize that many states have higher populations now than the entire US did in the beginning. What’s so special about the state level?

              1. Notice I said “states and communities”.

                As government becomes more local, your voice becomes louder. It’s much easier to protest your state capital than it is to protest in DC. I can bump into my state and local reps at the grocery store, meaning that they have a greater fear of accountability that those in DC.

                Why shouldn’t California be allowed to choose their own drug laws, or emission standards, instead of being at the mercy of 49 other states?

                Strong local government means that a community can band together, and implement all the statist policies that they wish. I don’t have a problem with socialism, assuming all the people living under that system choose to do so. This is impossible with a vast, central government, ruling over a country the size of Europe.

                1. Well, certainly local governments should handle local issues. But let’s not pretend there aren’t national issues, especially in today’s world. There are even global issues.

                  1. Which issues do you perceive as national? Do you feel they are national issues because that’s just the way it has always been?

                    The reason I ask, is because their are numerous things that, once upon a time, I thought could only be handled by the feds. Over time though, I began to see the error of my ways.

      3. “voluntariness means democratic government.”

        Seriously Tony? So now we know that you have been voluntarily giving charitable donations to the federal government, for the purpose of supporting the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, enforcing a restrictive immigration policy, demonizing homosexuals, and every other fucked up thing the federal government supports.

        1. I “voluntarily” support the system, not everything that comes out of it. Part of voluntariness when you have to interact with many other people is realizing that they have their interests too, and that I don’t always get my way. Some might say this is part of being a grown-up too.

          1. Thats funny, if an organization I support engages in activities I find morally reprehensible, I stop my support of that organization.

            That is the difference between voluntary exchange and compulsion.

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  38. “They just realize that there are levels of voluntariness”

    He shoulda had a V8.

  39. Yeah. Mr. Fred McSuccess really HAS GOT to surrender half his property and wealth to government because Black Guy O’Shea LeShawn DeShawn Jackson-Johnson LeWay spent his days dealing crack instead of attending US History class, so now we have to pay for him to fuck women, have 5 kids, and stay out of work 5 months out of each year because SAFETY NET SAFETY NET SAFETY NET SAGFERTHTH SST VH.

    Fucking assholes.

  40. Tony the buffoon is at it again, since he has never done any charitable work on his own, he thinks that his pontification about taking money from others makes him a good person. Tony stop being a selfish arsehole and help out all those poor people who so desperately need your help.

    1. If the rich want to pay 50% taxes (and many do), why don’t they just donate the difference? Why should those who don’t want to be forced to pay? Same story will helping people in general.

      Cue altruism drone (Tony) in 3, 2, 1, …

  41. Wow, that was an article?

    Someone, somewhere decided to “post” this as an article. Hmmm.

    I don’t know what to say…. Paul Krugman spent your 401k in his article?? What does that mean?

    Paul Krugman is a god by the way.

    This article is unintelligent and foolish. What was the point of this?

    I mean, I am actually curious.

  42. ty rights, etc. seem like a more accurate measure of freedom than democracy.

  43. This plan has no merit

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