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Thread: Understanding Leftists

  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by YardleyLabs View Post
    The Republicans controlled the Senate during the Reagan Presidency and the House presented little opposition in the face of Reagan's popularity. In fact, Congress actually appropriated slightly less money that Reagan requested in his budgets.

    "The traditional pattern of running large deficits only in times of war or economic downturns was broken during much of the 1980s. In 1982 [Reagan's first budget year], partly in response to a recession, large tax cuts were enacted. However, these were accompanied by substantial increases in defense spending. Although reductions were made to nondefense spending, they were not sufficient to offset the impact on the deficit. As a result, deficits averaging $206 billion were incurred between 1983 and 1992. These unprecedented peacetime deficits increased debt held by the public from $789 billion in 1981 to $3.0 trillion (48.1% of GDP) in 1992." [emphasis added]

    From "Historical Tables, Budget of the U.S. Government, Fiscal Year 2006." Downloaded from www.whitehouse.gov/omb/budget/fy2006/pdf/hist.pdf. Page 5.

    Bush did two basic things to increase the deficit by almost $5 trillion: He implemented massive tax cuts and he launched the war in Iraq while saying it was our patriotic duty to keep living as if there were no war. Both of those actions were taken while congress was under Republican control.

    The numbers are pretty clear and speak for themselves in a way that no amount of Teflon can cover:



    Republicans and Democrats alike operated in basically a fiscally conservative manner, paying down our national debt from the end of WWII until Reagan finally found his "feet". At that point, new Republican economic theories decided that deficits were OK if they were incurred to support tax cuts or expand defense spending. That "enlightenment" was the cause of deficit growth under both Reagan and Bush II. Bush Senior tried to put the brakes on and was crucified by his own party. Clinton proposed fiscally conservative policies throughout his administration -- a fact that cost him support from the more liberal ends of the party. He was bolstered by a Republican controlled House beginning in 1995. However, the deficit reduction plan which included but tax increases and spending cuts was actually adopted in 1993. However, the division of party control from 1995 was, I believe, a big factor helping to prevent either side from implementing grand schemes -- either in the form of massive tax cuts or massive spending programs -- that would increase the deficit. This was beneficial to the economy and economic growth combined with political deadlock are, I suspect, the reason the national debt was reduced so much.

    I believe that both parties have the will to bankrupt our country given total control of the process. As a result, I almost always favor split control and complete ideological frustration of both the right and left.
    It's not worth arguing over but I believe you have a few things wrong in your presentation. One thing being - total income increased with Reagan's cuts but he allowed Tip O'Neill to call the shots on spending. & there was the thing about neglected military spending where the D's excel.
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  2. #52
    Senior Member YardleyLabs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marvin S View Post
    It's not worth arguing over but I believe you have a few things wrong in your presentation. One thing being - total income increased with Reagan's cuts but he allowed Tip O'Neill to call the shots on spending. & there was the thing about neglected military spending where the D's excel.
    Actual appropriations under Reagan totaled $29 billion less than was requested by Reagan so "overspending" by Congress was not a factor. The budget deficit was bigger than he budgeted because his budget submissions persistently overestimated tax revenues in anticipation of the theoretical "supply side" boost.

    As I noted before, each side, left to it own devices, will bankrupt the country. Republicans do it by cutting taxes while increasing defense spending. Democrats do it by increasing transfer payments and spending programs without funding them fully through taxes. The reality is that if our economy is growing, our budget should be balanced. If our economy is growing rapidly, our budget should have a surplus. It doesn't matter how "justified" you believe your own form of poison may be. Persistent deficits destroy the economy and represent a bigger threat to our security than any outside enemy. If the economy is in recession, the "cure" should be temporary or it will become part of a permanent problem.

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