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Old 01-03-2013, 03:03 PM   #3561
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Jack wants "his" and to hell with the country.
I believe you were the one that suggested it would be a boon to all Americans.
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:20 PM   #3562
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I believe you were the one that suggested it would be a boon to all Americans.
I've searched "Boon" and cannot identify to what you are referring, please provide a link.
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:23 PM   #3563
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I've searched "Boon" and cannot identify to what you are referring, please provide a link.
My mistake, it was Cordy's comment that prompted Jack's reply. Read Jack's reply as such, and it's apparent what his point was.
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:35 PM   #3564
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Jack wants "his" and to hell with the country.
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Originally Posted by mgeoffriau View Post
My mistake, it was Cordy's comment that prompted Jack's reply. Read Jack's reply as such, and it's apparent what his point was.
Yeah; I assume olderguy was joking, but it's worth pointing out that context matters.

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Originally Posted by Scrappy Jack
What if entitlement reform meant a lot fewer people were eligible for care or benefits due to things like means testing and increased full retirement ages or caps on medical spending?
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Then the system would be sustainable and affordable and people might have to learn to plan for their future responsibly.
Ryan_G - Your response seems to presuppose that the current system is unsustainable and unaffordable and that no one needs to plan for their future responsibly. This may "seem right" based on whatever ideological or political or religious bias you naturally hold. That does not mean it is operationally accurate.


Because this is a picture/video thread...



Are you pondering what I'm pondering?
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:44 PM   #3565
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From these levels, given that the private sector is still repairing its balance sheet (mostly households as corporations are able to do that much more quickly)? Probably a recession.



Would tax and entitlement reform be a boon to "ALL Americans?" What if tax reform meant getting rid of deductions like mortgage interest and charitable deductions with only a minor reduction in the marginal rate? That would be a real kick in the ***** for me.

What if entitlement reform meant a lot fewer people were eligible for care or benefits due to things like means testing and increased full retirement ages or caps on medical spending?
You're absolutely right Jack. If I were to trust the government to enact these reforms--the very people who EFFED everything up--the resulting "simplified" cluster would end up being worse than what we have now.

As for your recession comment, If government enacted something as stoopid as sequestration, then YES, we probably would have a recession. Yes, I'm ASSuming that government would make good decisions, which is patently not the case in either party.

The best I can hope for is the smallest possible government with the least amount of intrusion into my life. The Constitution helped in this regard, once upon a time.
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Old 01-03-2013, 05:54 PM   #3566
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You're absolutely right Jack. If I were to trust the government to enact these reforms--the very people who EFFED everything up--the resulting "simplified" cluster would end up being worse than what we have now.
Regarding the tax code, my point was simply that it's silly to use terms like "ALL Americans" when talking about the benefits of a major change. Some people will benefit and others will suffer. That's not an argument for or against a change, just a criticism of the way you framed it.


Also, I am not sure what you mean by the government being "the very people who EFFED everything up," but I will bet you $100 that I can make an excellent argument that whatever "everything" is - from the recent global financial crisis to the US Federal income tax code - that the private sector was at least as complicit as the government.

Thinking the government is always and ever the bad guy/incompetent/immoral and the private sector always and ever the good guy/competent/moral is super silly.

Quote:
As for your recession comment, If government enacted something as stoopid as sequestration, then YES, we probably would have a recession. Yes, I'm ASSuming that government would make good decisions, which is patently not the case in either party.

The best I can hope for is the smallest possible government with the least amount of intrusion into my life. The Constitution helped in this regard, once upon a time.
You may hope for the "smallest possible government" but I'm not sure that's what most people want or that it would be the best outcome. People like to idealize different time frames and view history through romantic nostalgia. They also tend to always think today is somehow worse than "when I was a kid" or when "the Founding Fathers" were running the show.

A great example is violent crime. Ask the average person if there are more or fewer homicides in the last few years versus the 1990s or the 1960s and if it has been getting better or worse.

If they answer that the average homicide rate is lower over the past 5 years (2007 - 2011) than the 1960s or the 1990s and that the trend has been getting better, I'll be damned impressed. I know that I never would have guessed that until I actually went looking for data.

A graph of all violent crime in the USA for the past few years from the FBI Uniform Crime Reporting program:



How about economic activity? Was the 3rd quarter of 2012 GDP growth - after inflation - better or worse than the 20 year average? If they answer that it was 3.1% versus 2.5%, drinks are on me.

How about dollar terms? The USA lost $625 billion of economic output during the last recession. Since then, it has recovered $951 billion of economic output. Does that mean it couldn't have been better? No. But it does mean it's not as bad as people think.



Sorry to bring a bunch of data and objective facts to the discussion, but at least I added a picture. Charts are pictures, right?

I deal with people every day that let emotion and bias overwhelm their otherwise intelligent and rational thought process and it's so frustrating (and a little bit sad). It's like they are all wearing that shirt from the Mythbusters that says, "I reject your reality and substitute my own."

Or, instead of "my own" it should read "the one fed to me by the echo chamber of whatever biased editorial sources I consume."
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Old 01-03-2013, 06:26 PM   #3567
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Yes, I'm super silly *****. Jack, one of my New Years resolutions is to not waste time explaining myself on forums, because that would be just....silly.

Perhaps diving into the minutiae with you would be good over coffee or a beer, but suffice it to say that to my eyes our system is broken in the broadest possible context, and that we're not only going downhill but we're also picking up speed.

If only I had a graph...
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Old 01-06-2013, 01:54 PM   #3568
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But not doing well enough. This administration has done everything in its power to slow the economy down, so obama could get reelected and work towards his third term, so he can be just like FDR.
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I wish I could achieve this level of delusion. Life would be so much more simple.
Delusion?

Rep. Jose Serrano reintroduces bill to repeal presidential term limit | Twitchy

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Old 01-06-2013, 03:14 PM   #3570
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I cant find alot of info on this, im actually posting it to see if anyone has a non tinfoil hat perspective:

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Old 01-06-2013, 03:17 PM   #3571
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It was posted on another forum and I found a Nicholas Phelps / Laura Phelps that live in Sandy Hook, CT. That's as far as I went with it because the main claim by people on that forum was that there was no one by the name "Nick Phelps" that lived in the area.
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Old 01-06-2013, 08:41 PM   #3572
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I cant find alot of info on this, im actually posting it to see if anyone has a non tinfoil hat perspective:

Eh, seems like a reliable source to me.

Wellaware1 Honest men fear no question. Home page 1
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Old 01-06-2013, 08:51 PM   #3573
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heh, yeah it was found on FaceBook from someone known for fact checking stuff, seemed alittle too far fetched for even her so I figured i would ask the internetz
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Old 01-07-2013, 11:35 AM   #3574
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Are you stupid or just acting stupid?

That same bill has been introduced every 2 years by Serrano since 1997. It's never gone past committee.

I'm sure THIS TIME it'll be different though.

you need to lighten up.
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Old 01-07-2013, 11:36 AM   #3575
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I cant find alot of info on this, im actually posting it to see if anyone has a non tinfoil hat perspective:


this post is racist; what all white ladies with brown hair in their 40s all look same?
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Old 01-07-2013, 12:11 PM   #3576
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Originally Posted by Scrappy Jack View Post
Ryan_G - Your response seems to presuppose that the current system is unsustainable and unaffordable and that no one needs to plan for their future responsibly. This may "seem right" based on whatever ideological or political or religious bias you naturally hold. That does not mean it is operationally accurate.


Because this is a picture/video thread...



Are you pondering what I'm pondering?
The graph you linked was broken but I looked it up and that is the most cluttered POS graphic so I didn't even try to put effort into reading it. If you want to summarize the idea I'll be glad to hear it.

The current system of medicare and SS are not affordable atleast not without reductions in coverage or real income payouts.

When I said people would have to start planning for their future responsibly I guess I was linking one problem to another when they are really unrelated. I know there are a lot of americans who do not properly plan for retirement and then live almost solely off of SS or have to take SS and work in order to stay afloat. This is really more of a problem with how they handle their own finances and not the cause of the current system.

EDIT: Your link works in my quote but it doesn't show up for me in the original post. It is also much larger then when I tried to view it the first time so maybe I'll attempt to read it now.

EDIT 2: Ok I read the graph. I see that you are pointing out that medicare costs have dropped to rising at a little over 2% annually as of January 2012. However, the problem with medicare is not the current payouts or ever the payouts per person. It is the future obligations and the actual total payouts that are unsustainable. You will soon have many more people taking payments than people paying in to the fund. I don't care if costs per person is rising slowly. The money is just not there so it really doesn't matter.
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Old 01-07-2013, 01:00 PM   #3577
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The graph you linked was broken but I looked it up and that is the most cluttered POS graphic so I didn't even try to put effort into reading it. If you want to summarize the idea I'll be glad to hear it.
My main point with the graph was that it indicated that, over the most recent shorter term, Medicare costs have been going down. This is contrary to projections that are often used to show health care costs growing permanently and indefinitely to the moon.

Quote:
The current system of medicare and SS are not affordable atleast not without reductions in coverage or real income payouts.
[...]
EDIT 2: Ok I read the graph. I see that you are pointing out that medicare costs have dropped to rising at a little over 2% annually as of January 2012. However, the problem with medicare is not the current payouts or ever the payouts per person. It is the future obligations and the actual total payouts that are unsustainable. You will soon have many more people taking payments than people paying in to the fund. I don't care if costs per person is rising slowly. The money is just not there so it really doesn't matter.
Help me understand what you are saying with the highlighted portion. Are you suggesting that the US Federal government is going to run out of US dollars, and thus be unable to make the Medicare payments?
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Old 01-07-2013, 01:13 PM   #3578
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Help me understand what you are saying with the highlighted portion. Are you suggesting that the US Federal government is going to run out of US dollars, and thus be unable to make the Medicare payments?
No, I am suggesting that a system that was designed to be self sustaining is not. As we have discussed in length the U.S. Is not going to run out of money. That does not mean we should not try to fix programs that are broken.
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Old 01-07-2013, 01:29 PM   #3579
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Old 01-07-2013, 02:47 PM   #3580
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[Chart of Japanese financial sectoral balances
Nice! Where did you see that at?

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No, I am suggesting that a system that was designed to be self sustaining is not. As we have discussed in length the U.S. Is not going to run out of money. That does not mean we should not try to fix programs that are broken.
[I am genuinely not trying to be pedantic here. I will admit that I am still very much educating myself on some of the operational details of the Social Security and Medicare systems. These kinds of conversations help me identify holes in my understanding so I am not just trying to be argumentative for the sake of it.]


That said, help me understand what it means when you say Social Security and Medicare are "broken." You earlier referenced that "[t]he money is just not there" and that the programs were "not affordable." You then say that there is no threat of the US Federal government running out of money.

Those seem like directly contradictory statements.

What does it mean, operationally, for them to be "broken?" For example, if a car is "broken," that might mean it does not run at all or it runs very poorly. A "broken" chair might mean it will not support any weight and is therefore not functional as a seat. In other words, the items are no longer functional for their intended purposes.

What do you mean when you say that Social Security and Medicare are "broken?"
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