• I don't know if I would go that far itisi, but on the ABC nightly news, there was the results of the study of political ads in this election cycle conducted by ABC themselves. Interesting results, although the study is not on the ABC site yet, so no link, but anyway...

    51% of political ads by Democratic candidates, across the country, are personal attack against their opponent.

    69% of political ads by republican candidates, across the country, are about issues.

    Take it as you want.

    October 29, 2010 at 6:42 p.m.

  • This comment was removed by the user.

    October 29, 2010 at 5:58 p.m.

  • If I may inject a point of order in this running debate Legion vs BigJ/Writein. BigJ you are correct the debt was eliminated in 1835, but Legion's question was as follows:

    "When Was The Last Time That The United States Was Debt-Free?
    The actual answer is - 1836."

    The federal debt was zero during both 1835 and 1836 - so Legion's answer to his own question is correct - I guess we all need to get a life :)

    October 28, 2010 at 10:55 p.m.

  • Mike...I took a big hit, too, but I'm NOT gonna bail out when the market is down. It's been coming back and so have our IRAs. I have faith in the stock market. I have little but contempt for the executives who run the large corporations both here and abroad as well as the ones running the big banks and people like Boone Pickens. But the market itself I do trust. I trust in the viability of the American economy and the basic strength of the American people. I do trust completely my investment counselor. He has an amazing "bedside mannor" in that he can talk and explain and take away some of the worry. When the markets plunged, we bought and, now that it's back around 11,000, my portfolio is looking reasonably healthy again. It's certainly not back where it was when the DOW was over 14,000, but it is a lot better than it was a short time ago. When it's FINALLY time to retire, we'll buy annuities that will pay us for as long as either of us lives. Those in addition to SS will provide us with a comfortable -- not lavish, but comfortable -- retirement provided inflation doesn't get outrageous. If that happens, I guess I'll learn to like Alpo. I'm hoping that BO will be a one-term president AND that the republicans will have learned from the excesses and mistakes of Bush II and we can vote for a reasonable, not far right religious nut, but a fiscally conservative candidate who knows how to compromise with the congress. I hope by that time the American health care system will not have been destroyed by obamacare.

    October 28, 2010 at 9:22 p.m.

  • It sounds a little strange that McConnell would make a comment like that... That their goal is for Obama to be a one term president. But when you look at where that is coming from, it makes more sense.

    Health care was a real big mistake for the Democratic Congressmen. Many will lose their seats because of that item. But it was not the bill itself that was so toxic. It was the way it was manipulated through Congress. The actions and ideology of this administration have caused a strong negative reaction from the voters on the other side.

    Many Republican Congressmen are hearing from those who support them that they do not want the country to move in this direction, and since the Democrats are so determined to meet the goals of their Liberal base, there are plans to vote them out. All of them. This election is a start. More will go in 2012.

    If some of the Democrats see what is going on and move toward the middle, the government will probably function in a balanced way. And the purge will stop. Based on how so many are not using health care in their re election campaigns, one would assume that it may be making them think again.

    Do the Republicans have the power to fulfill their goals if it comes to that? Who knows. But that is the plan.

    October 28, 2010 at 7:52 p.m.

  • Writen, if you would have said Ronald Reagan created the "modern debt", I probably wouldn't have commented.

    However you commented..."I guess you forgot or should I say IGNORE the fact that President Ronald Wilson Reagan created the debt by heavily borrowing money from China. "

    I only pointed out, by your comment above, that the United States has only had zero debt for a very short time, be it 1835 or 1836, doesn't really matter, two years out of 234 years.

    My comment was in now way a insult to your intelligence, your comment "Ronald Wilson Reagan created the debt..." is in fact, not true, I take it you meant to comment " Ronald Wilson Reagan created the MODERN debt."

    But you left that one word, MODERN, out of your comment.

    Don't "put words in my mouth" when I only responded to your actual comment, not what you meant to comment, but didn't.

    October 28, 2010 at 7:05 p.m.

  • Writein,

    Yes, I have the same crystal ball you have♠

    You-tube is amazing, just type in Obama as far back as 2000, and listen to his words, subject, substance, topics and his setting. That is how I have come to my opinions of this man♠

    He told Jon Stewart, he wanted to change the thinking in DC; he could get more done if it wasn’t for the filibuster rules. Obama does not want checks and balances; he wants to change the power of the president to have complete control, which in my view is a dictator♠♠♠ Some times you just have to scrape the crust in order to see what is in the pie, just because some one told you it was lemon doesn’t make it so when there a lot of pies on the table♠

    October 28, 2010 at 6:57 p.m.

  • waywardwind

    While I'll agree with you, we will have they get a tow truck and a heavy duty chains just to get to the republicans to the bargaining table.... The future house majority leader,John Boehner said they would be no compromise.... He might change his mind if the committee I mentioned, recommends raising the cap but eliminate it; no way.... Unfortunately we have to deal with reality.

    Workers are currently getting out of their 401 K's because of the volatility in the market and people just don't trust Wall Street anymore.... I agree that mutuals stack up better than Social Security benefits but after my grown children learned that I lost a little over $12,000 in the financial collapse; they immediately pulled out of the market.... We'd need to do something to restore the trust in the market for individuals; right now the big boys are supporting the market... Many companies are taking advantage of the low interest rates to buy back their company stock.

    It's too bad that pensions are rare nowadays because more companies switched to matching funds 401ks for their employees. Some companies have even stopped matching funds.

    Have a good one

    October 28, 2010 at 5:46 p.m.

  • Mike...You said the 250,000 was arbitrary and you just made it up for the sake of the conversation and that the cap might need to go to 500,000. Then you said something profound: "Medicare doesn't have a cap." That's true, of course. Now, why not remove the cap from FICA wages? I do believe that, in the future, more and more people will need to be more and more responsible for their retirement.

    One thing that needs to happen is to begin teaching in high school the basics of saving for your old age. Teach'em as kids. Show'em what they can expect if they do and, more importantly, what they can expect if they DON'T. Demonstrate how private savings in good growth mutual funds will stack up against the same amount of money placed in Social Security. Show'em how, if they start a serious and continous saving program of their own when they're young, they won't have to be concerned if Social Security is available for them when they retire.

    I know that I wish I'd started a LOT earlier than I did, but I worked for an oil company and there was the "promise" of a fully funded pension down the line and I'd seen how well my dad's oil company pension provided for him and Mom, so I didn't take it seriously for several years. "If" is the biggest word in the English language.

    October 28, 2010 at 5:28 p.m.

  • justataxpayer

    A.... I just made up that $250,000 cap but you might be right, that might need to be raised to $500,000 because those suckers have never paid in... Medicare doesn't have a cap.

    B..... I could go with raising the eligibility cap with some waivers for those working in labor intensive jobs.

    C...... While I'll agree that we all need to make sacrifices, the reality is that the politicians don't have the political guts to tell us that.

    lol... Be my guest, blame Reagan but I don't see anything wrong with short term deficits spending in,as long it is within reason and our GDP can afford it.... We do it with major purchases like mortgages and automobile loans...I know the old line "but that's our money" and my answer "yes" and you will be the beneficiary tomorrow."..

    There you go... Social Security problem solved in one afternoon... I will e-mail this to the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform... If it were only that easy....:-)


    October 28, 2010 at 4:53 p.m.

  • Justataxpyer.

    I have a better chance of being President of the United States or anywhere close to that vicinity than Bristol Palin in 2020. The ChiComs would say to any future President, I do not know, but my guess would be eating lead.

    October 28, 2010 at 4:51 p.m.

  • Itisi.

    How do you know? Do you have a crystal ball? 2012 is another year. Your disagreement is based on your hatred and nothing more. I firmly believe I know where is the source of your hatred. Yes I can tell by your demeanor. I listen to the Jon Stewart “interview” . If the President is a dictator than why did he allow and let Jon Stewart poke some fun at him? The Character Assassination from you and the majority on this board needs to stop. That is actually is dividing the country.

    Conservatives have and will overstep their bounds. Here are the examples. Glenn Beck’s attacks on the Obama girls, Sean Hannity’s Neo nazi ties. Rand Paul’s idea about the 1964 Civil Rights Act along with his thugs beating up a woman.

    The Tea Party is nothing more than a wild, over budget remake of the Mink Coat Mob of the early 1960’s.

    October 28, 2010 at 4:43 p.m.

  • Raising payroll taxes, that will increase employment? It is a basic economic principle that has been proven many times that when you tax something you get less not more of what is being tax. How do you compromise on that - who wants fewer jobs?

    October 28, 2010 at 3:05 p.m.

  • born2Bme

    That's a pretty tough question and I have to answer with assumptions.

    We have about 75 million baby boomers heading for Social Security benefits in the next few years, those people will not be affected....leaving 75 million jobs for the young workers.
    About 40% of our jobs are in the service industry where the labor intensity is not that great, so raising the age to 67 would be to their benefit, since people in that industry tend to want to stay longer. I agree and said so the other day, that older people have natural aging medical problems that make them the least likely to the retain their jobs.

    This is only one of two or three more steps that need to be taken.... Raising the wage base cap from its current $106,800 to $250,000 will probably do more good but you know politics always raises its ugly head..... The republicans do not want to raise the wage base cap and the democrats do not want to raise the age limit.... A compromise has to be made.

    October 28, 2010 at 2:51 p.m.

  • So.... I was at the mall today, buying tall boots, and I noticed the "vote aqui here" sign. I voted. =P =P =P =P =P =P

    October 28, 2010 at 2:19 p.m.

  • I'm curious about something. How will raising the retirement age help anything? If people are forced to stay on the job longer, it will mean less jobs for the younger workers. Not only that, most employers don't want workers on their payroll that are a health and/or safety risk. Older workers fall into this catagory more often than younger workers
    Raising the age will create at least 2 new problems. No matter how you look at it, there are only X amounf of jobs.

    October 28, 2010 at 2:11 p.m.

  • justataxpayer

    I still maintain that it wouldn't take more than two and three days to come to a Social Security solution.... I agree workers to those on Social Security will come closer together because we have an aging work force but by raising the retirement age, raising the cap and possibly imposing some sort of means testing; Social Security can become solvent again even if the payroll tax collected goes into the general fund....Social Security will always be there for retirees because the government bonds held by Social Security are backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. government..... If you believe our country is gonna go totally bankrupt, then Social Security benefits will be the least of our problems.... I know there are a lot of people out there trying to scare everyone because tax revenues are not keeping up with our intake but eventually that is going to change... Those same people will not come back and say they were wrong... I'm not trying to minimize the problem, but Social Security has been with us for 75 years; that's a pretty good run for any government program.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:37 p.m.

  • waywardwind

    You're absolutely right.. That would make it more exciting
    My mistake.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:18 p.m.

  • justataxpayer

    The 180° apart was meant as a compliment because I don't expect very many people to be as optimistic about investing in our people, infrastructure, and energy sources, as I am..... I think it will pay off in the future.... I'm not that gung- ho about balanced budgets and short term deficits. I just don't believe you can run a $14 trillion economy like a household budget. i.e.... If we need to go to war; we're going and if a natural disaster occurs,FEMA will respond.... I'm not for heavy doses of taxes because we can do a lot with entitlements and defense spending cuts.... I suspect you are good caretaker of the purse strings and believe it's time for fiscal restraint.... I think we need to wait until unemployment comes down to ~ 7% before we start making drastic cuts.

    I completely agree that the trust of Wall Street,corporations and congress is at an all time low and it is justified. I disagree just a little bit, because I believe the republicans are moving far to the right,the democrats are becoming the old republicans; leaving the middle class with no one to turn to.

    I never said anything about Reagan exploding the debt and didn't blame Tip O'Neill because I think that's irrelevant at this time. We've had plenty administration's to undo those wrongs but they didn't.

    I do find it fascinating that but three years ago Hillary Clinton was being vilified by the right; now she enjoys a 75% approval... Bill Clinton was also a bogeyman for the right, now the republicans are praising him for being bipartisan...Go figure.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:13 p.m.

  • "Social Security can be made solvent with a little tinkering here and there but Medicare needs a lot of attention."

    Social Security is tied in with the "Mandatory Spending Problem" (MSP). Although Social Security is running a small deficit it is a major part (30%) of the MSP. In 2020 Mandatory Spending including interest on the debt will cost:

    4.2 trillion dollars.
    17.4% of GDP.
    74.0% of total spending.
    89.8% of total revenue.

    This assumes "Healthcare Reform" only costs $106 billion in that year - LOL

    Interest on the debt will be $840 billion this assumes interest rates stay about 4 to 5%. How likely is that when rating agencies are considering downgrading our long term bonds? How willing will countries be to roll over our debt or buy more even more of our debt?

    During the Clinton boom years TOTAL federal spending was only about 18 to 19% of GDP. On top of this we are two trillion dollars behind on infrastructure maintenance and improvements and defense has not even been mentioned. Who will end up being the world's policeman - China?

    October 28, 2010 at 12:18 p.m.

  • Mike...I understand. Different strokes for different folks. However, I'd BET you would find NASCAR exciting if they started turning RIGHT! :)

    October 28, 2010 at 11:46 a.m.

  • waywardwind

    I never claimed to be anything less than boring but I would be just as bored watching race cars going around in circles,turning right.... Several of my friends hate baseball because they think it's too boring but they have a attention span of a 4 year old.

    I've been a political junkie since 1990 and I think it's fascinating to learn what different parts of our nation likes and dislikes. I like to hear what political analysts like Charlie cook and Chuck Todd say about the demographics of counties in bellwether states. It's not so much who wins and who loses but why they won or lost; that I'm interested in.... It's interesting to me the data they use to call an election....Before 1990 I was not aware nor did I care,that a state like Florida could differ with their politics by just driving the 100 miles or less... This year I found out the Delaware has a north and south much like the divide of the civil war. That small state has the university elites in the north and the working poor in the south and they don't like each other...... In your trip to Wisconsin you were amazed with the landscape.... In my trip to Chicago, I loved the hustle and bustle of the big city and its people.

    It's no secret that we are not two peas in a pod and I think we're both comfortable with that.

    Have a good one

    October 28, 2010 at 10:05 a.m.

  • I disagree with you guys, Obama will not get re-elected, he will not move to the center, because of his ideology. He will place his arrogance behind the ideology that he believes in. He will demonstrate that arrogance with the power of the “pin” by Executive Order, he will continue too divide this country. This is not 1994; this election is about Obama and his “ideology.” There is no comparison to Bill Clinton and his ideology. Obama is to far out of the box with his European style of governing. He made that very clear on the Jon Stewart program. His demeanor was that of a dictator on Stewart’s program, his has put himself in a position as to, he is looking down on the people, as look to me I have the answers. If just one Democrat had courage to run against him in 2012 he/she would get elected, but you will see maybe a Republican or Independent if a Democrat refuses to run against him. Two years is a long time, he will fall, and fall hard.♠♠♠

    October 28, 2010 at 9:39 a.m.

  • justataxpayer

    I know we're about 180° apart , so it shouldn't be a shock that I totally disagree with your last post.

    Social Security can be made solvent with a little tinkering here and there but Medicare needs a lot of attention but since it can't be tied to Wall Street, it doesn't draw as much republican interest as Social Security does.

    I know Ron Paul doesn't like Social Security, Medicare or the safety net because of his Austrian economics beliefs which argues against a centrally planned economy and for a decentralized free market economy. That system is a sister of laissez-faire which believes that the market will always self correct. I do agree Ron Paul is a soloist but I think we should be thankful for that because he was against the bailout of Wall Street ...In hindsight it was the right thing to do and it only cost us less than 1/2 of 1% GDP... If Ron Paul would have had his way; most economists say that unemployment would have been at ~ 25%..... I won't even go to the only NO votes to give Congressional gold medals to Mother Teresa and Rosa Parks... Then another NO vote to give FEMA aid to his constituents in Galveston after hurricane Rita..BTW he maintained 100% rating with the anti-tax crowd knowing full well his colleagues would vote for the FEMA aid.

    This blog is going in the direction that has turned this political junkie completely away from the daily noise of political shows... We are still arguing about what Reagan or Clinton did, which is not relevant to today's problems. This past Sunday, I was watching a discussion between a representative from Singapore, one from India another from Great Britain each giving their views on our economy. The representative from India was amazed that we only gave the new administration less than two years to get out of a near depression and implement steps for recovery. The rep from Singapore said America has hit its economic peak and we're trying to manage our decline. The representative from Great Britain doesn't know why are we even considering electing some fringe candidates.

    I just have a feeling that the next two years will bring us a lot of revisionist history, talking points, gridlock, and more of the same instead of dealing with reality.

    October 28, 2010 at 9:31 a.m.

  • Writein

    I agree with your statement that "President Obama will get a second term with a congress or a house govern by the "RepubTea" Party. The "RepubTea" will over reach and offend indepenents and moderates in the next two years. "....but Mitch McConnell knows he needs to rein them in and said as much in the same National Journal Review article when he said "“Incidentally, there is no polling data that suggests [the voters] love us.”

    October 28, 2010 at 8:42 a.m.

  • And one more thing, that cartoon is incorrect. The jackass is hitched right but the caption should say "Can Do Anything."

    The "Can't Do Anything" caption should replaced the "Won't Do Anything" over the elephant - yeah much better.

    October 28, 2010 at 8:42 a.m.

  • BigJ, China is not looking at us as fools, but more so as a bad investment. We are trying to pay off our debt with "funny money" - the Chinese are not amused.

    October 28, 2010 at 8:37 a.m.

  • Justataxpayer.

    I would hazard a guess that it was in 1986. It was stupid and still stupid to borrow money from Red China to fight their allies the Russian Reds. This is why I can’t stand neo-cons. I bet you that China's High Command is looking at us like fools.

    October 28, 2010 at 12:02 a.m.

  • Icantcook.

    Where in my statement had I threaten Legion? Thank you for trying to put words in my mouth. By the way, Legion pretty much know who I am.

    October 27, 2010 at 10:21 p.m.

  • writein, I dont know who you are but I wouldnt threaten Legion too hard. you might regret it.

    October 27, 2010 at 10:11 p.m.

  • Leion357

    Jerry, I urge not, NOT, to insult my intelligence. I know what I am talking about. I didn't fall off the turntip wagon. You may think I’m dumb, but do not talk to me like I am dumb.

    The National Debt was paid off in 1835, NOT IN 1836. Since you didn’t know what I know then maybe you should read my blog I made TWO MONTHS about the National Debt. ( Second, the context of my earlier statement was about the Debt in MODERN TIMES. I blame Ronald Reagan and every President since (minus Obama) for the Debt crisis of today

    Next time Jerry, do not insult my intelligence.

    October 27, 2010 at 9:04 p.m.

  • Mike...It's gonna be a looong boooooring party regardless of what the republicans do. I can think of few things more deadly dull -- perhaps a Shakespear sonnet -- than watchiing election returns. The result is decided the moment the polls close, but the votes must be counted. Watching TV all night for a foregone result is beyond my ability to concentrate. "All right! We just got the totals from precinct 21 in the southern part of Gibberish County. We've been watching that race for County Clerk all evening and it's almost a dead heat. Forty-one votes for Frick and thirty-eight for Frack. Channel 9 is going out on a limb here and declaring Frick the winner with fifty-nine percent of the votes counted!" "GAWD! I've never been drunk enough to listen to that stuff. Just give me the final results in the morning paper. All I want is the result. It's not like watching a football game or a NASCAR race where things happen. It's like watching paint dry, only without the drama.

    October 27, 2010 at 8:15 p.m.

  • Oh, the link....

    October 27, 2010 at 6:55 p.m.

  • Reagan "created the debt", now that is some funny stuff.

    When Was The Last Time That The United States Was Debt-Free?

    The actual answer is - 1836.

    1836. Andrew Jackson was President of the United States. The Republic of Texas declared their independence from Mexico. Arkansas was admitted as the 25th state.

    In short - it's been a long while since the United States had zero federal debt.

    From 1792 to 1834, the United States was slowly able to whittle down the size of their debt in relation to their GDP.

    In 1792, the Debt to GDP % was 35.1; by 1834, this number had been brought down to just 0.39%.

    In 1835 and 1836, the United States (according to public records) had no public debt to speak of - a 0% Debt to GDP ratio that I'm sure will never be duplicated again.

    The United States was founded in debt, money was borrowed from France to support the revolutionary war. It took until 1836 to get out of debt, but since then the United States has always been in debt.

    October 27, 2010 at 6:53 p.m.

  • Itisi.

    I guess you forgot or should I say IGNORE the fact that President Ronald Wilson Reagan created the debt by heavily borrowing money from China.

    October 27, 2010 at 6:05 p.m.

  • President Obama will get a second term with a congress or a house govern by the "RepubTea" Party. The "RepubTea" will over reach and offend indepenents and moderates in the next two years.

    October 27, 2010 at 5:36 p.m.

  • President Obama has set the political tone in this country due to the fact that he has been campaigning since he was sworn into office. The analogy and rhetoric that he chose was to beat back the Republicans from everything too driving the car into the ditch to they can ride with us, but they have to set in the back. He has criticized his own party, told the Hispanics to punish their enemies. This election is about Obama and his agenda; it is not about Democrats or Republicans. It is about stopping him in his tracks, he has cost the taxpayer three trillion in 20 months, and has not sold the American people one thing they can take to the bank. He shoved his healthcare agenda down the American taxpayer throats. Even when he is out campaigning for his senate buddies he doesn’t bring up his own healthcare agenda. He screwed the American people, he is a “fool”, he tried too push his European style government down the throats of the people, and well they didn’t buy in to it. The voter is educated more than ever because of technology it runs 24/7/365.

    It is time to stop this progressive train wreck and the spending. Obama is digging a whole that we can’t get out of and it is the damn Democrats fault! If the Republicans take over the House, I hope there is a gridlock in congress and they do not spend one more “dime” of taxpayer money on any other entitlement program we can’t pay for the programs we currently have now♣♣♣

    Thanks to Bill Clinton for the China trade deals that screwed American manufacturing jobs. The Democrats have got us into a fine mess.

    October 27, 2010 at 5:08 p.m.

  • justataxpayer

    Today I voted for two republicans in the local races and about five republicans in the state races because I don't really think party affiliation is that important at the state and local levels... That is just my thinking..... Governors, senators, and representatives usually follow a party platform, then I am influenced by their party affiliation.

    You're absolutely right,taxpayer, for years I didn't dwell on the issues or encourage my friends, neighbors, and family to do likewise. We are now in a position that we have to start listening to concepts that our partisan thinking may not like..... I'm anxious to see congressman Paul Ryan's reasoning and data supporting raising the age for Social Security. His supporters have to be willing to see the reasoning and data supporting raising the Social Security payroll tax cap.... The holy grails may have to be looked at.

    I accept responsibly for my faults and next Tuesday I will see the results..... I hope I'm wrong but I just don't see our representatives talking about issues that matter..... We can take up the unimportant issues when unemployment comes down to 7% and the economy starts to grow.

    October 27, 2010 at 4:38 p.m.

  • That's gonna be a boring party because the republicans will only take the house of representatives, leaving the democrats the senate and the executive branch..... It won't be like 2008 when the democrats took the whole enchilada...... Now that's going down in flames or as former President Bush said " we took a thumping"

    Have a good one

    October 27, 2010 at 4:10 p.m.

  • I am thinking of having a block party and watch the DEMS' go down on flames.

    October 27, 2010 at 4 p.m.

  • Hictoria

    Well, I never really touched corruption but I see it on all fronts whether it's business leaders, politicians, or those wanting favors..... It's a broken system no doubt, but we don't have the political will to fix it.....The only answers I hear, is to continue playing the whack-a-mole game.

    October 27, 2010 at 2:46 p.m.

  • I am glad you have figured out ALL politicians are corrupt in one way or another.

    October 27, 2010 at 2:39 p.m.