Steamboat lays off 7 city employees

Cuts primarily to administrative positions effective today amid tight 2011 budget

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Jon Roberts

— The axe finally fell Monday morning in City Hall and Centennial Hall.

Steamboat Springs City Manager Jon Roberts said seven full-time city employees were laid off Monday, the latest outcome in a two-year work force reduction that has included hiring freezes, furloughs and pay reductions for city staff.

A forewarning of Monday’s layoffs came last week when the Steamboat Springs City Council gave initial support to a proposed 2011 budget that includes personnel cuts of more than $700,000. Those budgetary line items now are realities.

Roberts said he, Human Resources Manager John Thrasher and the appropriate department directors met individually with each affected employee Monday morning.

“It’s a very unfortunate result of the continued decline in the economy,” Roberts said. “It’s very painful.”

The layoffs include an assistant in the Planning and Com­­munity Development Depart­ment; three positions in the Public Works Department; an inspection administrator for Steamboat Springs Fire Rescue; and a position in the Finance Department.

The city’s losses also include one position right outside Roberts’s office door: Lauren Mooney, who has worked in City Hall as the assistant to the city manager since the late ’90s.

“I’ve had a good 14-plus years with the city, and I enjoyed working with everyone and I’ll miss them,” Mooney said Monday. “They were my work family.”

Mooney said she worked for six city managers, including those who served in an interim capacity, during her tenure. Former City Manager Van James hired her.

Roberts said a total of 14 personnel positions were eliminated Monday from the 2011 budget. He said the seven positions that did not require layoffs include three already vacant positions in the planning department; one vacant patrol position in the Steamboat Springs Police Department; two seasonal positions in the Parks, Open Space and Recreational Services Department; and one position that was re-assigned.

Roberts said Police Chief JD Hays recommended elimination of the vacant patrol position as a way to meet budget requirements. Last week, during City Council’s daylong budget hearing in Centennial Hall, Capt. Joel Rae said the Police Department has seen a 10.5 percent reduction in calls for service year to date, compared to 2009.

Public Works Director Philo Shelton said his department lost a construction services foreman, a staff assistant and a staff engineer as a result of Monday’s layoffs.

“Building permits, new construction projects, etc., are very slim to none right now,” Shelton said. “These positions supported those projects.”

Shelton said the construction services foreman had duties including storm water inspections and construction quality control.

He said the city now is down to three city engineers rather than four. The layoffs should not affect snowplowing this winter or other essential city services, he said.

“We had no other cuts in the Public Works Department, which is street, fleet, transit, airport, and no cuts in staffing as well in the utility division, which is water and wastewater,” Shelton said.

Roberts said the seven layoffs were effective Monday and included a severance package equivalent to the employee’s salary through the end of this year. Employees will remain on the city’s health insurance until the end of this month, and the city also will provide each employee with medical insurance assistance, he said.

Roberts said employees also will have access to COBRA health insurance, a federal program that provides temporary coverage at group rates to some employees who have involuntarily lost their jobs.

The city had a staff equivalent of about 270 full-time employees before Monday’s layoffs, which Roberts said he hopes will be the city’s last.

“It’s our intent that this is the last step we’ll have to take,” he said.

— To reach Mike Lawrence, call 871-4233 or e-mail mlawrence@steamboatpilot.com

Comments

sledneck 3 years, 6 months ago

Hurray! Everyone else is cutting. It is good that the city is too! Now, if they would just realized how much more effective they could be by stopping spending on "big ticket" items, maybe our county/ city could avoid bankruptcy.

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JLM 3 years, 6 months ago

They will have to make further cuts before the year is out. The economy is getting worse not better.

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Jamie Morgan 3 years, 6 months ago

Brent: Is the last paragraph of the article accurate---does the City of Steamboat Springs really employ 270 FTE's? I assume an FTE computes to an employee working 2000 annual hours. 270 FTE's seems like a lot for my own myopic sense of the City of Steamboat Springs as an employer.

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Scott Ford 3 years, 6 months ago

Hi JLM -- You indicate that the economy is getting worse not better - could you elaborate on your comment within a local/regional context? I do not necessarily disagree with you - I am always interested in hearing other perspectives of what leads them to their conclusions.

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

I also disagree that the economy getting worse, certain aspects like the housing market might be but overall output has seen just a glimpse of growth, but not getting worse. 2.6% according to this Bloomberg article: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-10-11/economists-cut-u-s-growth-forecasts-through-2011-on-job-woes-survey-says.html

The country has enough doomsdayers, how about putting politics aside and getting a little optimism and faith in your country.

And Wall Street seems to be doing great, back to business as usual: http://www.nydailynews.com/money/2010/10/12/2010-10-12_wall_street_payday_returns_depite_mired_economy_pay_on_track_to_break_record_144.html

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housepoor 3 years, 6 months ago

I do think locally we are doing a little better in the tourism area or at least it feels better? My concern is how many more locals we are going to lose that are trying to ride out the downturn but are now realizing that the real estateconstruction industry is not returning anytime in the foreseeable future.

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Brian Kotowski 3 years, 6 months ago

Pray for snow. There will be 5 fewer commercial flights in & out of YVRA this season.

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Scott Wedel 3 years, 6 months ago

Hiya Scott, The negatives are the reduced flight seats (which should have limited impact because last year had so many empty seats). I also note that Sierra View condos which allow direct comparisons have continued to decline in price. At the start of the year an unit was quickly sold when it's price dropped to $150K. Now there is one for sale for $129K and another for $137K that have yet to find buyers.

I think a big issue is reflected in SB's drop in Ski magazine rankings. Seems to me that SB was once the best ski resort for families. We were more affordable and friendlier. And so while not scoring in the top of any particular category, SB would overall consistently get an overall ranking in the top 3. But we have been too caught up in comparing ourselves to Vail and Aspen which has resulted in a whole lot of development that has made us inferior versions of Vail and Aspen while we have neglected family friendly tourism. We chased something we should never have wanted and neglected what had been our strength. For instance, tubing at Howelson, a city owned facility, costs significantly more than at Saddleback Ranch which also has a better hill, more varied runs and a closer lodge. I think it shows we've lost focus when the City's tubing hill in downtown where it is easier for tourists costs more than the privately operated for profit tubing hill. I think there was a time in which the Chamber would have lobbied the City to make tubing and similar stuff more family friendly, but now no one cares.

So now Vail and Aspen offer enough discounts that someone wanting to go there can afford to go there and are not forced to settle with SB as next best choice. And families are finding that other resorts are better for them.

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

I will have faith in my Country if after November 2nd we have voted the power out of the hands of the Socialists. The largest indicator that the economy is getting worse is the unemployment rate, even with the White House manipulating the numbers to sucker the zombies the rate can't be pushed lower than 9.6%. That number does not account for the last two weeks of September which shows an increase to 10.1% not including those who are not counted which push the number all the way to 18.8%. http://www.gallup.com/poll/143426/Gallup-Finds-Unemployment-September.aspx

Using the most left wing of media sources we can see that the economy is in doomsday mode.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/10/08/unemployment-rate-september-2010_n_755453.html

So only those living in a bubble of comfort could believe that the economic agenda of this Administration is working or can work and is either in la la land or a supporter of this Socialist agenda.

As far as County employees being released, does a DUI while driving a County vehicle get one fired, just asking? I would think that someone with that knock against them would go before others who have an exemplary record.

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

"Recovery losing momentum" does not equal doomsday. Doomsday is a tool used by politicians, religious leaders, etc to scare people into a certain action - in your case "voting out the Socialists". Remember the fear stirred up by "don't switch horses midstream",I am so glad we dug in even deeper with Iraq and poured billions down the drain thanks to exaggerated threats. Defense spending has been and continues to be by far the largest portion of our budget, lets take an axe to that instead of laying off teachers!

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

Zed, Are you claiming that the tripling of the deficit by Obama was spent on Defense? Really?

You need to learn what the Federal Governments role is and what the States role is and then you may have a different understanding of the wealth redistribution that is taking place. Unions have ruined education through the political ambitions of Politicians and the pensions that absorb the funds intended for students and teachers, like the recent $30 billion dollar stimulus that Obama pushed through. That money is NOT doing a damn bit of good for those who really need it. Just the Unions and politics. And it may not seem like doomsday to you if you are in no financial ruin, but sorry to inform you that a great many Americans are in serious trouble with no light at the end of the tunnel all the while as the White House imposes more Socialist policies like Cap and Trade and Card Check etc. Spread the wealth and Global Union power, that is what is at work here. The SEIU and Obama have been totally open about that, need proof? Use google or go to youtube and watch for yourself what they say. Are they lying?

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Curtis Church 3 years, 6 months ago

Actually, entitlement programs (SS, Medicaid, Medicare, Unemployment and Welfare), when added together are three times the expenditures of defense spending. However, I do not believe that considers emergency supplemental appropriations.

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Curtis Church 3 years, 6 months ago

However, I am not making a statement about which is more important.

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housepoor 3 years, 6 months ago

A forthcoming study by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities concludes that the $1.4 trillion annual deficit run by the government has little to do with current White House policies and much to do with George W. Bush's actions.

"What we have looked at were several major contributors to the deficit: the tax cuts between 2001 and 2003 (on the assumption they get extended in 2010), the cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the effects of the recession as well as the legislative response to the recession," James Horney, director of federal fiscal policy at the Center, told the Huffington Post. "When you take those things into account -- in other words, if we hadn't enacted the tax cuts, had the wars, if we hadn't had the recession and needed the legislation to deal with those problems -- the deficits are much, much lower. And basically none of those represent Obama's policies. He didn't run saying he wanted to pass a stimulus to deal with the recession or that he wanted to continue the war in Iraq or escalate [to this extent] in Afghanistan. He inherited these issues once he took office."

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

The funding for Iraq and Afghanistan have been primarily emergency supplemental to the tune of 752 billion dollars. Read it here from the CBO: http://cbo.gov/ftpdocs/89xx/doc8971/Letter.2.1.shtml You want to send pallets of US money blindly overseas and you are a patriot, you want to help schools and you are a union supporting communists. Perspective is such a funny thing.

NPP has a nice breakout of where tax dollars are going(not including emergency war funding). It's not unions drawing the big defense contracts and it is not the socialists trying to redistribute wealth to Haliburton and Wall Street. It's all of those wonderful privately held corporations in bed with government. End our numerous wars today and how much would we save? I see doomsday when so much of our tax dollars and soldiers lives go towards war and so little go to education and infrastructure.

http://www.nationalpriorities.org/taxday2010

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jaded 3 years, 6 months ago

I'm pretty sure it is the Winter Sports Club who runs and collects revenue for the Howelsen tubing, hill, similar to the Alpine slide. Prices are set by them, not the City.

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dmaz101 3 years, 6 months ago

seeuski...

Typical bagger. Connecting the 7 layoffs in Steamboat to Obama. Okay, you started it.

I lost my job early 2008 due to the drop in retail sales, after 21 years in management. At the time, I didn't blame it on Bush. But now I know better. The Republicans caused this mess. Every wonder why a Democratic President leaves office with a surplus, and the Republican Presidents leave with a defecit? Hmmm. Obama's biggest mistake was trying to fill a $3T hole with only $800B. Can't be done.

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

dmaz101, You got laid off in 2008 because you were probably a lousy manager. The argument you are putting forth has been worn out over the last 8 years on this forum and no one is going to change their positions. If someone thinks Saddam Hussein and the Taliban were not threats then the war was a big waste. If someone believes the opposite and feels that Bush was doing what any sitting President should have done then you would support that effort, to protect America from enemies foreign and domestic. The Iraq and Afghanistan wars cost 1% of GDP yearly, our financial woes represents 10 times that amount. Check out what the debt payments under Bush and now Obama are as a % of GDP and it might wake up some thought in the process of figuring out what our Government is doing wrong. Calling me names also shows a symptom of why you were canned by your boss in 2008, attitude is everything.

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

And the 7 layoffs should not have happened if as Obama said, "we are in the summer of recovery" and "if we don't pass the stimulus bill unemployment will go over 8%".

Great leader.

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housepoor 3 years, 6 months ago

Seeuski, Can you please give it rest!!!!
You post 100x more than anyone on here and treat every thread as if it’s your own personal fox news audition.

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ride4fun 3 years, 6 months ago

While it is always traumatic and difficult for anyone who gets laid off, the City did not go far enough. Seven employees represents 2.5% of the workforce. If the City was serious about managing its talent they would annually remove the bottom 10-15% of the workforce and create a culture of accountability. We should not accept nor can we afford an environment where government positions are held sacred.

Recently the city spent $500k to upgrade systems to increase functionality and efficiency. The result of this upgrade based on the Pilot resulted in a headcount increase. Expenditures like these need to be based upon measurable ROI and not feed the administrative bureaucracy.

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OnTheBusGus 3 years, 6 months ago

Well, that news spread fast: http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_16317965

Some of the comments from the Denverites are interesting.

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kathy foos 3 years, 6 months ago

Good Luck to the people looking for work,I dont think many people are hiring.

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Scott Wedel 3 years, 6 months ago

Doesn't really matter who runs the tubing at Howelson. Where is the Chamber with sponsorship (or corporate sponsorship) to make it an affordable part of a family vacation to SB and so on? It is instead yet another means of fleecing tourists instead of making SB a better place to visit. And we have become so used to it that we don't even have people looking at SB vacations from the tourist's perspective and working to making their experience better even if it involves extracting less money from them.

The City's 2008 financial report says they have 225 full time employees and 60 full time equivalents for a total of 285 equivalent full time employees. So the City has already reduced staff by 15 employees prior to the layoffs. Not exactly drastic, but not zero either.

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Scott Wedel 3 years, 6 months ago

BTW, why is it that the City's financial reports are 50MB of bitmapped images instead of a normal pdf with text via fonts and formatting? It does prevent searching or any other useful electronic tool of analyzing the financial report.

It is intentional to obfuscate it's contents or merely ignorance?

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Chris Peters 3 years, 6 months ago

seeuski, Your cloak of anonymity has gotten old. Why don't use stand up for your views and the hatred you spit by adding your real name to your profile. Then when I see you on the street I can tell you your #1, with my middle finger. And I won't be hiding my identity from you, it will be out there for all the world to see. Get some cajones or stop waging personal attacks on those who disagree with you. You make me sick!

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1999 3 years, 6 months ago

sadly...SEEUSKI is a fine representative of the idiocy and hate that has overtaken the once conservative repub party.

sadly...this is what we are getting in politics and among voters.

stupidity like seeuski

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challange1 3 years, 6 months ago

It just sickens me that you people are actually happy that more people have lost their jobs. (sledneck) I bet you wouldn't be cheering so loud had it been you!!

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mtroach 3 years, 6 months ago

Housepoor/chrisp lay off the outing of seeuski your beef is with the pilot's policy not her.

Seeuski is right on some points but I'm on the other side of the fence to her. Not a problem. I didn't think saddam was a threat to the USA as the most powerful nation in the world I think we should be able to outlast a single dictator on the other side of the world and thus I belive the invasion if Iraq was a mistake. Same with the talaban. If the usa wasn't addicted to oil we could let the middle east return to the fight they have been involved in since old testamant times. Problem is our government was owned by corporate america and big oil's interests (and our addicted economy) were and are at risk by conflict in the mideast. We need to get control of the government back in the hands of individual citizens, and put responsible reps into congress that will reform campaign finance, tax policy, immigration and government spending(benifits). Till then we're victims of this system we allowed to be created.

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mtroach 3 years, 6 months ago

Sledneck; like any proud anti government conservative you are refusing unemployment benifits. Yes? I would hate to think you are on the forum posting against big government while benifiting for said big government's welfare programs. That would make you quite a hypocrite.

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

^^^Good call out, who knows the real story behind the people posting on here.

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housepoor 3 years, 6 months ago

Didn't realize Sled needed to work??

Sled said: I worked like putting out fire from the time I was 12 till I was 38. I sold 2 sucessful companies that are still making money for their owners and I still own 3 others. I retired at age 38 and never have to work again. I did it all with NO government help and in spite of considerable government annoyance. I was on jobsites reading plans by flashlights at 5 am 6 days every week.

All that time I watched others. Employees of mine who refused to work in the rain came in on Mondays describing how they fished all weekend during a monsoon. Some who could NEVER get to work on time managed to get in the woods at 5 am to go hunting. Some stole from me. Some lied to me. Some worked as hard as I did and they were making $50,000/yr (in the '80's) even though they were high school drop-outs! Each and every one of them was EXACTLY where the sum total of their past choices put them. NO EXCEPTIONS.

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

^^^ Typical Republican elitist "self made man" mentality. It makes life so easy when you can judge a person in such simple terms... But why would someone so special be without a job for 13 months?

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mavis 3 years, 6 months ago

zed- I don't know who sled is but.... he doesn't sound like an elitist... more like a realist... when I read his comment I would assume he has something to do with building houses and if you haven't noticed there is NOT a LOT of that going on..... especially in the last 13 months... Sounds like a solid hardworking HONEST person NOT jumping up and down for a handout...

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sledneck 3 years, 6 months ago

Yeah mtroach, that would make me a big hypocrite indeed. Not to worry; I have never taken $$$ from any government handout program. And I would commit suicide if I genuinely could not find a job in 99 weeks.

I don't need to work, House. But I LIKE to work. I know thats a concept foreign to leftists' but I consider work a priviledge.

Zed, Your comments ring silliest of all as I have oft times publicly disavowed republicans and their policies. Republicans suck just 1% less than democrats. I am a libertarian.

Why I'm without a job? I'm glad you asked. The reasons I am without a job are several. First, I'm living in the same world as the "poor helpless unemployed". You know... the folks you defend while you castigate me for being equally unemployed. Second, I don't need or really want a job and so I can't find a job for the same reason a bank robber can't find a cop. Anyone who needs 99 weeks to find a job clearly doesn't want one. (including me)

I am not happy about people losing their jobs. I have lost jobs and won jobs allong lifes way. My point is that YOU are not your job. If you lose your job suck it up, grow a pair and find a job tomorrow. It is no disgrace to lose a job. It IS a disgrace to be perpetually unemployed while claiming to want work.

It's very simple. Can't get a $25/ hr job? Find a $20/ hr job; or $19 or$17 or $12, etc. You want work bad enough, it's there. Put a mexican out of work! Steal your job back. Demand a freakin border. Demand employers hire Americans. If you won't do those things stop askin me to cry for you.

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mtroach 3 years, 6 months ago

Sled as most republicans are for free markets and unrestricted business, why are you against free boarders. Labor itself must be able to move where the work is and be employed. Isn't government restriction on free labor movement bad? If amaericans really wanted to work how do illegals even get "our" jobs? Really, we just need a way to get illegals, legal, and into our tax system faster. That way Uncle Sam can get his, to pay for yours(ours), before its sent back to their homeland. Isn't that immigration reform, which you oppose? How else do we fill those jobs?

Please help me understand this?

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

"Sounds like a solid hardworking HONEST person NOT jumping up and down for a handout"

Yep, because all those people who need government assistance are dishonest and not hardworking. I guess I should feel guilty for looking into down payment assistance to buy a condo in Steamboat, the problem is clearly that I am not a hard enough worker!

Sled, based on your logic that anyone who wants to work can find a job, how do you feel about Mexicans seeking better opportunities in the US? I don't doubt that a good number of them are much more hardworking and honest than the American's they are "taking" jobs from, if you had been born in the slums of Mexico city, would you cross the border to work hard and be rewarded?

As for your personal story, I think you are well aware that there are a large number of people in Steamboat that do not have to work because of family money, etc. They are not a result of their job or their work ethic, their comfort in life is a result of being handed ideal financial circumstances. Not necessarily your situation,but certainly makes me suspect when someone speaks of being unemployed in Steamboat for 13 months...

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

If the President knowingly lied to the American public about the stimulus package and the funding of "shovel ready jobs" would it be wrong to assume that that President more likely than not lied about Health care reform and other new laws? Let alone the bogus charge against the US Chamber of Commerce. The Lehrer report blows the whistle at the 8 minute mark.

November 2nd is so important in order to regain some semblance of order.

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mtroach 3 years, 6 months ago

So noone can explain why republican's are for the free market up untill that free market allows labor to cross our boarder to work in our labor market? Protecting our labor market from outside influences seems like a democratic policy, not republican, yet the republicans are screaming to close the boarders.

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trump_suit 3 years, 6 months ago

Seeuski,

When are you going to figure out that youtube is NOT a news source?

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

Are you going to seriously suggest that a tool like youtube as a video vehicle would be considered a news source? WOW! The video depicts a specific Lehrer episode, is that not a news source? Or is it because you can't yell, FOX NEWS, FOX NEWS, FOX NEWS, on this one?

Many of you on the left are seriously losing credibility in these days leading up to the elections and your post above perfectly represents the swamp of ideas are empty now. I do believe that today's NYT's has the editorial by Baker where it is revealed that Obama knew he was lying over a year ago when he continuously told Americans that the stimulus was going for "shovel ready jobs" and if we didn't pass it the unemployment rate would go over 8%.
Obama has been holding rally's lately where he says to the effect, "we need to keep moving our agenda forward" using the driving a car shpeel,"put it in D for drive or R for reverse". Well how intelligent would it be for people to continue with proven policy failures especially when we know that we were lied to by this man?

Insanity= doing the same failing thing over and over hoping for different results.

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Insanity = saying tax cuts are gonna fix the economy, create jobs, etc, etc. Especially when they go unpaid for. If extetending the Bush tax cuts are so important to job creation, where were the new jobs when the tax cuts were enacted in 01 &03. Bush Jr.'s administration presided over the worst job creation in this country since Herbert Hoover. Even perennial whipping boy Jimmy Carter and his administration managed to add 10 million jobs in only a 4 year term, while the Bush Jr administration presided over the creation of 1 million jobs in 8 years.

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

Are you serious Trout? The unemployment rate under Bush was below 5%, there is a record of lower taxation causing economic growth along with increased tax revenues and the opposite for your Socialist desires so please don't waste your time repeating the left wing talking points it's old.

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hereandthere 3 years, 6 months ago

Serious? Please reference your record of lower taxtion causing economic growth. The two instances of lowering taxes to stimulate the economy that come to mind are under Reagan and Bush, with questionable results, to say the least. While your at it, you might look at the increase in net worth of the top 3% of the wealthy, as well as the increase in compensaton of the corporate leadership (as a percentage of average workers salary), and tell us how that has created jobs. And, please don't waste our time with right wing talking points, its old.

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

Agreed, The growing divide between rich and poor is staggering, especially given the connection to Bush's policies that supported the wealthiest 1% of population in the years leading up to the economic crash. So the rich grow their personal wealth over the past 20 years and economy is suffering. With so few people controlling so much of the countries money I see them as a major influence in our economic problems. And now they are using that wealth to influence our elections through anonymous donations, great...

I won't post a link, but do a search on the top 1% wealth and pick your source. I wonder if most Tea Party members realize that these are the people who will benefit the most from the policies they are seeking. Average Joe is not going to get anything, Glenn Beck will certainly be sitting pretty.

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trump_suit 3 years, 6 months ago

Hmmm, A little historical perspective here for Seeuski. I know that everything is Obama's fault so please explain these discrepancies:

  1. Bush = POTUS 2000 thru 2008 - Obama - POTUS 2009, 2010 http://money.cnn.com/2009/01/09/news/economy/jobs_december/

Are you telling me that the potential election of Obama cause 2.6 million jobs to be lost in 2008?

  1. TARP (economic stabilization act of 2008) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emergenc...

So John McCain was going to suspend his campaign, The entire Gov't (both sides or the aisle) agreed that the banking/investment industries were in critical condition, and the economy basically fell apart in 2008, but it is all Obama's socialistic policies that were going to start in 2009 right?

Seems to me that 8 years of the Bush tax cuts and two unfunded wars caused the economy to collapse in 2008 and Our current POTUS has been left to clean up the mess. You may not like Obama's current agenda or solutions, but the situation that developed in 2008 can be blamed directly on the Bush administration.

That is if your current line of thinking that the POTUS is directly responsible for everything remains.

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sledneck 3 years, 6 months ago

Taxes result in revenue to the taxing agent. From zero upward the revenue increases on a bell curve. At zero % and at 100% the tax revenue is ZERO; no taxes will be collected at those rates. (if you are one of those individuals that has to wonder, even for a moment, why 100% tax rates result in zero revenue welcome to the communists' club) As tax rates climb from zero revenue increases. As they approach percentages people disagree with those people stop producing. Some at 30% some at 40% and some tolerate tax rates even higher.

Milton Freedman and F A Hayeck both did ehaustive work on the subject and found UNDENIABLE evidence that rates significantly higher than current levels depress revenue. Furthermore, other undesirable resluts increase too; like a decline in worker productivity, innovation, reasearch and development of new products, etc. Ultimately these conditions result in lost revenue too. Whether or not significant portions of the polulation have the capacity to anticipate or comprehend those results is another question.

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sledneck 3 years, 6 months ago

I would rather live in a country where there is a divide between the 3% rich and 10%poor that can be bridged by the opportunity freedom affords; than in a nation where 99.5% of men are ruled by .5% and have zero chance to change their lot in life.

For the most part the rich keep getting richer cause they keep doing the things that made them rich... DITTO for the poor.

Envy is unbecomming. Especially from those who are lucky enough to be "poor" in the USA. Billions of people around the world would like to be what you guys indignantly call "poor".

One last factor most overlooked by the leftists that perpetually condemn our capitalist systems "neglect of the poor" is mobility. Poor people are not numbers, they are individuals (a word leftists hate). Most INDIVIDUAL people found in the poor category one year have worked their way out of it by the next. Sure there are always 10 or 15% poor as statistics. But they are not the same people in most cases. The freedom and opportunity afforded them by our system has allowed them to "graduate" into middle class and even rich.

Show me a system that has lifted more poeple from poverty than free-market capitalism.

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

The marginal tax rate on the the countries highest incomes has been at a low since 1987: http://www.truthandpolitics.org/top-rates.php#fn-7 http://www.ntu.org/tax-basics/history-of-federal-individual-1.html Repealing Bush's cuts would put them back at what is still a historically low rate of 39% instead of the current 35%.

As for your comments that "For the most part the rich keep getting richer cause they keep doing the things that made them rich... DITTO for the poor" - Money=Power and it is naive to think that those who control the money will not try to control our country and people. I have a great amount of respect for our capitalist system, but given recent events and history of big business I am suspect of a small group of individuals growing their concentration and then telling the 90% of Americans who make far less than them that everything is ok and fair.

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Actually, See, as of 2008 tax revenues in dollar terms did not regain what they were in 2000 until 2006. Thru 2008, tax revenues relative to GDP still had not reached their 2000 peak. So, where's that increased tax revenue under POTUS Bush you're talking about. From 1961-2000, we had a Dem in office half the time, GOP the other half. During Dem controlled years, real GDP expanded 4.1% per year. During GOP controlled years, real GDP expanded 2.9%, with the 8 years of W. Bush coming in at a paltry 2.3%. That must be the stellar economic growth under POTUS Bush you're talking about. If you look back to this country's 'glory years', 1945 - 1965, The top marginal tax rate fluctuated between 77% and 94%. During this time, we built America's middle class and our manufacturing base. In contrast, from 1925 - 1931, the highest marginal tax rate was almost as low as it's ever been, 25%. Between 2003 - 2010, the highest marginal tax rate was also at one of it's lowest, 35%. So, what happened when we had these historically low tax rates? The Great Depression and the Great Recession.

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pitpoodle 3 years, 6 months ago

Trump, here's a little historical perspective for you. Eight years of the Bush tax cuts and two unfunded wars did not cause the economy to collapse.

Our crash stemmed primarily from questionable mortgage lending practices that allowed people to make purchases without proving their ability to pay back the loans and allowing banks to make these risky loans with little capital to cover losses. Although regulations were in place, requiring banks to keep capital in reserves to offset risk, they found a way to bypass the regulations by dividing up and selling the risk associated with the loan. That done, risky loans could be reclassified as risk-free and would free up cash reserves they no longer had to keep for potential losses. When mortgage holders began to default on the risky loans the house of cards fell apart. Congressional oversight (Dems held control of Congress) of the banking industry failed. There was no oversight.

TARP gave authority for emergency spending of $700 billion. TARP funds have been repaid with interest except for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and auto bailout $.

The $787 billion stimulus was Obama’s initiative through Senator Rangel and Rep. Pelosi and amounted to a wealth redistribution package (call them socialistic policies if you wish). There is no proof that it helped the economy but it did divide the electorate and you can see the start of class warfare. In 2008 unemployment was at 5.8%, after the failed Stimulus spending which promised jobs, it is at 9.6% today.

Sorry, Trump but Obama is responsible for all that has happened to our country after his Stimulus spending failure ($852 billion with Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and auto bailouts). The stimulus money was squandered on paying off unions and the like. We watched it happen. The shovel ready projects we were promised to create jobs never materialized and stimulus spending took away any money available for small business loans. To this day, businesses are unwilling to hire because no one knows what Obama and his Congress will do to next. Obama must take responsibility for his actions to spread the wealth at the expense of actual working people. You need to recognize his failures.

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trump_suit 3 years, 6 months ago

So how do you explain how the economy lost 2.6 million jobs in 2008 before Obama became the President?

I understand that you beleive the stimulus was a failure. Please enlighten me on how Obama's policies cause the economy to lose that many jobs in 2008?

If we blame every single job lost in 2009 and 2010 on Obama the unemployment rate went from 7.2% to 9.6% for an increase of 2.4% If we assign the blame for even just the first quarter of 2009 to Bush instead of Obama that initial number jumps to 8.6% leaving Obama's policies responsible for just 1% or the current unemployment rate.

But, you say its all the Democrats fault..... They were the ones that caused the banking meltdown. I would agree more with Sled here that both parties are equally to blame for the policies and lack of enforcement that led up to the housing collapse. What I call foul on is blaming Obama for the recession that clearly started before his administration. If anything you could argue that Bush caused the recession and Obama's policies stopped recession from becoming depression. it could also be argued that Obama and the Democrats should be congratulated for stopping the massive bleeding of jobs out of the economy and in ever so slowly turning into growth.

I know, attack me for my liberal ideas. Go ahead and elect those Tea Party candidates you are all so fond of and when they disband OSHA, MSHA/ Dept. of Education and the EPA you can all brag on how low your taxes are while the big companies continue to take advantage of you.

The next Oil Spill or Mine collapse will never happen right?

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Poodle, there is a whole lot of proof the stimulus did exactly what it was supposed to do. The most recent analysis by the CBO states that the stimulus saved or created between 1.4 -3.3 million jobs. Moody's has a more conservative estimate, coming in at 1.6 -1.8 million jobs saved or created. Also, did you realize that $242 billion dollars of the stimulus were tax breaks that went to families and businesses? That's about a third of total stimulus spending. And you're completely wrong saying Obama is to blame for the Fannie & Freddie bailouts. On July 30, 2008, President Bush signed a bill to prevent Fannie & Freddie from collapsing and giving the Treasury Dept. the power to step in and protect them with taxpayer funds, all the while raising the debt ceiling to $10.6 trillion. The bill passed with bi-partisan support, 72-13. Also, that was all part of the TARP funds signed into law by president Bush, not the stimulus.

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

The hot air will not save the election for the Dems, sorry but the greater public has realized that the Socialist policies of this Dem controlled Government is a loser. You won't be able to create or save the jobs of many Democrats in the House on November 2nd. The fantasy of jobs created or saved is about to disappear.

Keep your eyes on the national debt clock as we approach the most recently heightened ceiling of 14 trillion, the Dems will try to blame the Republicans this January for not razing the debt ceiling once they take back Congress in order to accommodate the Socialist policies that Obama has shoved down our throats and are driving up the debt. That will be how the left bash's the Conservatives and it will be the job of the new Congress to deal with this huge problem. Something will have to give.

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

Socialist policies equal lower taxes right? Where did you spend your $800 tax savings this year? It is unfortunate that many see what they want to see and buy into the hysteria.... like how our guns and religion are being taken away and the government is growing in size(actually shrinking since Obama took office). Obama has been far from Socialists and sadly represents more of the status quo.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/19/us/politics/19taxes.html

It is disappointing that no one in the Tea Party movement is taking any responsibility for our current situation, and instead going down the tried and true path of scapegoating the other party, "take America back". While it may get angry Americans riled up, hacking the government apart and letting businesses run free is not a comprehensive solution to our complex problems.

Wait Wait, Why haven't the Democrats used "Don't switch horses midstream" yet?

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Wasn't aware that facts are "hot air". No need to let that little thing called the truth get in the way of baseless accusations and flat out lies, crammed down our throats by the uninformed . Still wondering how extending ex- POTUS Bush's tax cuts are gonna save our economy, produce jobs, etc., since it's never worked in the past. Would love to see the stats that say the stimulus was a failure, not just empty talking points. Would love to see the facts that say Obama was responsible for the bailouts of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Anyone? Gotta love the hypocracity of our sitting Senators and Congressman, who rail against the stimulus in public, but privately lobby the White House for stimulus funds for their disrtict. Minority leader McConnell is the king of hypocracy. He was quoted as saying "the stimulus will squander an enormous amount of money on things that wont make much of a difference". He then turned around and lobbied for stimulus funds from Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood by wrinting 5 letters to him that sounded downright Democratic, including building bike paths in the Bowling Green area. In one of those letters supporting the rail industry, he wrote " supporting Appalachian railroads has the potential to attract industry, create jobs, and move goods thru areas underserved by the national highways." John McCain railed against the stimulus, then happily lobbied for funds for Phoenix's international airport. House GOP conference leader Mike Pence railed against the stimulus and Dems Proposals on climate change, then wrote letters on behalf of a bio-fuel initiative that would "reduce greenhouse gasses and promote broad-based green job creation" for his state. Scott Brown, Paul Ryan, Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul, Pete Sessions, etc, etc, etc. All hypocritical socialist, don't you think?

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

See. Can you please back up your accusations that the jobs saved or created under the stimulus are just "fantasy"?

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

So let me get this straight here, you guys are now saying that it is the Dems that are the fiscally conservative and the Repubs are the Tax and spend Socialists? Soooo, if we just stay the course with more debt and stimulus/deficit spending along with larger Government and smaller private sector that the US economy will rebound and we will all be in a state of euphoria? In the nearly 4 years now that the Dems had the House and the purse strings our debt has skyrocketed and the deficit has soared by more than 3 times what Bush had. The debt ceiling has been raised by Congress several times as they spread the wealth. It was Pelosi who said "don't worry about the deficits we are going to spend" right after Obama was elected. It is Obama who is operating with NO budget. Good luck in two weeks. Oh, and Obama's money man, Soros, has threatened our US dollar. You know, Soros, the guy who is in the deepwater offshore drilling business in Brazil with the $2 billion US taxpayer dollars he received from Obama. Funny, Obama is also helping Mexico set up drilling and other manufacturing with OUR money. And in the news today it seems that foriegn campaign donations(money from Americans working abroad) to the Dems has outpaced the Repubs by 2x. Why Obama went after that nonsense just shines the light on the mans nature.

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seeuski 3 years, 6 months ago

Yea I can back it up easily by asking you to show us where we can find that specific data, the jobs created or saved. It doesn't exist, it is a euphamism made up for the MSM to help confuse the mind dead in the voting populace, which is a decent amount of the voters out there. I would go back to Obama's own words that "if we don't pass the stimulus bill we will go above 8% unemplyment" (classic fear mongering). Well, we went above 10% unemployment with the original stimulus and the several additions to the waste that followed. This ship is sinking and putting phony balogna stats out to the public by this POTUS is a testament to his arrogance.

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hereandthere 3 years, 6 months ago

Referencing back to Trouts comment on the Bush tax cuts: still would like to hear why, after overseeing the biggest redistribution of wealth in our history, from the middle class to the wealthy, the conservatives were not able to create jobs.

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

It's from the Congressional Budget Office, an independent, non-partisan agency created by the Congressional Budget & Impoundment Control Act of 1974. Key phrases here being INDEPENDENT, NON-PARTISAN. It's a source that everybody can look to to get straight facts, numbers, etc. They tell it how it is. Lord knows we can't trust our news outlets or politicians to be truthful. So, yes, it does exist. It's true. The CBO's last update this summer stated that the stimulus package lowered the unemployment rate between 0.7% - 1.5%, meaning that the unemployment rate would have topped out over 11% w/out the stimulus. The stimulus increased the number of employed people by between 1.8 - 2.4 million. It also raised the level of real GDP by between 1.7 - 4.2%. George H.W. Bush said "Read my lips. No new taxes." He lied too. Politicians lie. What's your point? I got the numbers. What do you have besides that bologna sandwich and empty talking points.

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pitpoodle 3 years, 6 months ago

Let’s start with this: The Obama administration predicted that the $787 billion stimulus package would create 3.6 million jobs. It didn’t. He claimed that jobs would be created with “shovel-ready” projects which never materialized. With all the job creation-reporting-errors we don’t know how many, if any, real jobs have been created.

The Government Accountability Office, a congressional watchdog group, stated that there are “significant issues to be addressed” in the accuracy of jobs created reports and cited errors with job number in non- existent congressional districts for example. The Wall Street Journal reported errors that have inflated the total number of jobs attributed to the stimulus. When Obama himself claimed that the stimulus package “saved or created” jobs, news organizations found huge exaggerations in the reported data. Many of the jobs reportedly created do not exist or cannot be accounted for.

It appears that more than ten percent of the jobs the Obama administration has claimed were created or saved by the $787 billion stimulus package are doubtful or imaginary, according to reports compiled from eleven major newspapers and the Associated Press.

You have got to be kidding to quote any jobs numbers from Moody’s whose credibility is questionable. Do you remember that Moody’s was the group giving out bogus AAA ratings?

I stand by my statement: There is no proof that it helped the economy and no proof that any significant number of private sector permanent jobs were created. Obama’s policies did expand government, however.

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Ok. From the GAO: Of the $35 billion dollars set aside from the stimulus package for highway infastructure and public transit, the Federal Highway Administration has obligated $25.6 billion for a total of 12,300 highway projects as of 8/2/10. The Federal Transit Administration obligated $8.76 billion of stimulus funds for about 1,055 grants. Highway funds were used primarily for pavement improvement projects, and public transportation funds were used primarily for upgrading transit facilities and improving bus fleets. Sounds like a few shovels were used in on most of these job sites. The GAO has asked the DOT to improve the accuracy of the number and amounts of contracts awarded, as the numbers may be overstated. But, really, overstated by 2 million jobs? 12,300 highway projects? Even if they were inflated by 10%, the stimulus would still be considered a succcess. But they won't know whether the nuumbers are overstated or not until the DOT comes back with more accurate numbers.
I just was just looking at another source when I quoted Moody's. I may not trust them, but I do trust the congressional watchdog, CBO, to be fairly accurate. And more importantly, Independent and bi-partisan. Lastly, You were dead wrong about the Fannie and Freddie bailouts, blaming them on Obama and confusing it with the Stimulus. What makes you feel so right about the failings of the Obama administration. Maybe you're wrong about the success of the stimulus package too? More facts: On October 14, 2008, Bush anounced a plan to buy stakes in ailing banks such as Citigroup, JP Morgan Chase, B of A, etc. You know, the big campaign contributors. This bailout was to the tune of $250 billion. Again, this giveaway was under a GOP whitehouse. Bush was quoted at the time " this is not intended to take over the free market, but to preserve it". This is because he was just smart enough to figure out that if he didn't help the banks, we'd be in a world of hurt, worse than we are now. Unfortunately, he gave them the money with no strings attached, so they just sat on it. Was it wrong for Bush to bail out the Banks, just as you seem to believe the stimuls was wrong?

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

As I've stated before, I'm not a member of either GOP or DEMS, and I don't want to come accross as an Obama apologist, because I'm not completely thrilled with his no backbone of an administration. But I'm tired of hearing all this empty talk with no numbers or facts to back it up. If I see a successful program from either side of the aisle, I'm quick to praise either party. I'm also just as quick to jump on an administration when they're policies are hurtful to our nation. If you say the stimulus failed, created no jobs, didn't help the economy,, etc., show me. I want facts, not just emotional heresay and empty talking points. How do you know the stimulus didn't create 360 million jobs. Do you have the proof to back it up? Where are the facts that say there were no shovel ready projects?

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Scott Wedel 3 years, 6 months ago

I find statements such as "$787 billion stimulus package would create 3.6 million jobs" curious because it suggests that they exclusively used $787B on projects. But about half of the stimulus was tax cuts. So presumably the spending on projects didn't have the desired multiplier effect and the tax cuts failed to have the desired stimulus effect. So using basic logic, if the stimulus failed then neither spending or tax cuts worked as hoped.

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exduffer 3 years, 6 months ago

Has anybody ever compared real estate sales and building permits vs. the stock market. Seems to me I remember learning in basic economics when one was up the other was down no matter what the tax rates were. Where were our economics proffesors when both were going hog wild. Money, like water, flows, it does not magically appear.

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exduffer 3 years, 6 months ago

Oh wait it did magically appear! In the form of dozens of credit card offers every month. Get over it people this economic down turn was caused by two things. Here is a hint, they are both among the seven deadly sins.

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housepoor 3 years, 6 months ago

WHAT"S THAT SCOTT? OBAMA GAVE US A TAX CUT??? WHEN, WHERE, HOW? THERE IS NO WAY THAT SOCIALIST WOULD EVER CONSIDER CUTTING TAXES!!!!!

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pitpoodle 3 years, 6 months ago

There is no getting around it (hard as you try, you can't blame Bush for this) Obama is responsible for all that has happened to our country after his Stimulus spending proposal and failure. The economy is in turmoil and made worse by his policies. He could have done something different. Yes? Also, there is no confusion about the $787b stimulus spending. As you will recall, I said: "$852 billion with Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and auto bailouts". Obama got behind the decision to redistribute wealth in this country with his so-called stimulus plan that only created more government. I do not believe he understands how private sector jobs are produced. That's the basic problem with this pres.

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housepoor 3 years, 6 months ago

U.S. President George W. Bush, saying "our entire economy is in danger," urged Congress to approve his administration's $700 billion bailout proposal.

"We're in the midst of a serious financial crisis, and the federal government is responding with decisive actions," Bush said in a televised address Wednesday night from the White House.

Bush pointed out that the collapse of several major lenders was rooted in the subprime mortgage market that thrived over the past decade.

He said passage of the $700 billion bailout proposal was needed to restore confidence in the market.

SO IS IT BUSH WHO DISTRIPUTED THE WEALTH OR OBAMA?

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Zed 3 years, 6 months ago

"He could have done something different. Yes?"

Such As?

I suspect that had McCain/Palin taken office they would have done the same as Obama. Closing the govt check book and hacking apart the government would have had devastating effects and magnified the unemployment. I have not heard a single economist arguing for what the Tea Party wants. Can you show me one?

What about all those private contracts and public jobs from government spending? Pentagon, infrastructure, Nasa, Forest service/parks, Army corps.... Fire those people in a down economy, how would that help? How would cutting medicaid payments help? I agree they need trimming, but I dont' see how Obama taking this route would have lessened the downturn of our economy.

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trump_suit 3 years, 6 months ago

Check yourself there Pitpoodle. Read the unemployment stats again. During the last quarter of the Bush admin the economy lost 2.6 million jobs leaving the unemployment rate on 1/19/09 (Obama's inauguration date) at 7.2% with the economy shedding 500,000 jobs a month. By March 31, 2009, unemployment stood at 8.6%.

Whatever you think of the stimulus bill, it was not the cause of the escalating unemployment rate and when unemployment topped at around 10% (9.6, 9.8, 10.1 depends on which pundit poll you look at) it has dropped every so slightly since and has at least maintained some kind of balance over the last several months.

Are we out of the woods yet? NO, but blaming Obama for that huge unemployment rate is very self serving when it escalated thru the roof during the last 6 months of the Bush administration and continued thru the first 90 days of Obama. By that measure, it would appear that Obama's policies have actually helped stabilize the unemployment numbers.

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Poodle, got a few questions for ya. (and See, feel free to add to this discussion) Can you please give some examples of how the stimulus has failed? Just because you say it failed doesn't make it true. How has the economy done worse because of Obama policy? Again, just saying it doesn't make it true. How are you so certain that Obama hasn't saved our economy from an even worse fate? Got any numbers to back that up? Did you support Bush's bailout of the auto industry? Did you support Bush's enactment of the TARP legislation that bailed out the biggest banks with no strings attached? Do you realize Obama had nothing to do with these bailouts when they were enacted? Just how are private sector jobs produced? Is it with the help of the Govt. tax cuts. Bush cut taxes in 01 & 03. Where were the jobs? Why did the economy produce little growth under his 8 years in office? Do you have any economic proof that the extending Bush's tax cuts will help the economy in the long term. Citing fiscal responsibility, how can you support such tax cut extensions w/out paying for them (cutting spending somewhere so they are cost neutral) as the GOP proposes? Are you aware that Bush raised the debt ceiling to $10.6 trillion to pay for TARP? And, finally, i'll leave you this quote from Bush the day he signed the bailouts of GM & Chrysler: "If we were to allow the free market to take it's course now, it would almost certainly lead to disorderly bankruptcy". "In the midst of a financial crisis and a recession, allowing the auto industry to collapse is not a responsible course of action. The question is how we can best give it a chance to succeed'. "My economic advisors believe that such a collapse would deal an unacceptably painful blow to hardworking Americans far beyond the auto industry. It would mean a weak job market and exacberate the finacial crisis. It could send our economy into a deeper and longer recession". Sounds like one of those 'wacky socialist' talking, don't you think?

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hereandthere 3 years, 6 months ago

Very unfair of you guys to pull out facts and to use logic to support your position. See and friends will be at a significant disadvantage.

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pitpoodle 3 years, 6 months ago

Actually, the Democrat Congress voted to approve the TARP package. Do you realize Obama was in Congress at the time? He could have voted no on the enactment of these bailouts, but he didn’t. Nor did he propose any other way out. The Stimulus program represents a program to distribute the wealth. The TARP funds represent a program to purchase $700 billion in assets and equity from financial institutions to address the subprime mortgage crisis not to cover tax cuts or war costs. Of the $245 billion invested in financial institutions, over $181 million had been paid back including dividends and interest by April 2010 (not from Fannie May, Freddie Mac and auto bailouts). In addition, AIG indicated that they would pay back $83 million from divestitures and securities. Although original projections put costs at $356 billion, the cost to taxpayers as of Oct 2010 is estimated at $30 billion, less than 1% of GDP. Recent reports indicate that taxpayers are expected to make a profit on the TARP lending. I wouldn’t call this program wealth redistribution (you do). It’s not a perfect program but having the banks pay us back with interest has worked for taxpayers. Time will tell whether the effectiveness of the bank bailout generally worked. Personally, I did not agree with the auto bailout in any way.

Can you please give some examples of how the stimulus has worked considering we have 9.6% (plus) unemployment? Just because you think it should work doesn't make it true.

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Give some examples?? Hahaha. Really?? What have my last few posts been about? I guess that means there are no answers to the questions I asked. That's what I figured.

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housepoor 3 years, 6 months ago

Pitt, Obama did support tarp while he was a senator along with President Bush and 73 other senators, 40 dems and 34 republicans. Has it worked? Not as fast as BushObama or anyone else would have hoped. Most likely they all under estimated the severity of situation and the rate at which the economy was falling in 2008 and the stimulus should have been bigger and more directed at jobs. There is plenty of blame to go around on all sides. What I’m trying to understand is why when everyone had a hand in this that you, the tea party or whomever, place the blame solely on Obama and the level of anger and emotion he evokes from you is scary. I am embarrassed as an American at the amount of disrespect we increasingly express toward the President of United States and this in not limited to Obama. It not something I want my children exposed to, but I guess you don’t get on the evening news by showing common courtesy. If anything will end up doing us in, it won’t be public heath care, socialism, more or less taxes but the lack of respect for each other’s point of view, the unwillingness to look for common ground and partisan politics regardless of the issue at hand.

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cindy constantine 3 years, 6 months ago

WELL SAID HOUSEPOOR - Could not agree with you more!!! What is it that I see on car bumpers these days? "Throw them all out"

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pitpoodle 3 years, 6 months ago

Trout, you can't give any substantive examples. Need I remind you that the unemployment rate in the US was last reported at 9.60% in September of 2010. From 1948 until 2010 the United States' Unemployment Rate averaged 5.70. This is not the direction we need to go. We need new direction. Yea, throw them all out! Obama too.

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sledneck 3 years, 6 months ago

"How should one behave toward his government today? He can not, without disgrace, be associated with it." (Apologies to H D Thoreau for spelling and paraphrasing)

I will take the exact opposite side of House here. Service in our military, for example, teaches that resrect is EARNED. It does not come with the office. When criminals rob from your kids why in the world would you tell your kids to respect the man or office unconditionally? Those are tenets of royalty.Of tyranny.

"we are endowed by our creator with... in-alienable rights". When evil men use power of office to usurp those rights it is they who bring disgrace to it.

What I can not honestly understand is why Americans give any respect at all to politicians. Our nation would be better off if we ignored them, their laws, their mandates. And stop looking to them to solve our problems. My God; they are the SOURCE of most of our problems.

Reagan said "government is not the ANSWER to our problems, government IS the problem". When Kennedy said "ask not what your country can do for you..." What part of the country do you think he was reffering to? The only part that has power... government. He knew a nation full of people looking to government rather than themselves was a recipie for failure.

Respect? Not a chance.

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Are we still talking about the success of the stimulus? If so, I have provided ample proof that the stimulus has had some success, citing numbers from both the CBO & GAO (both independent, non-partisan entities). Please go back and read my earlier posts. Even if the CBO & GAO numbers are inflated by, lets say, 30% (an astronomical margin of error), that still means that the stimulus created/saved between 1 - 2.3 million jobs.

Still waiting to see the numbers or facts to back up your accusations of a failed stimulus.

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Hey, at least we agree on one thing. Throw 'em alll out!!!

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cindy constantine 3 years, 6 months ago

sledneck--

You must always respect the office despite who the person is--after all the founding fathers originated this form of govt and you have benefited from living here!!!!

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sledneck 3 years, 6 months ago

Trout, Even a dead cat will bounce when it hits the pavement. Of course there have been some succeses. I think the point is we would have been better off just keeping our tax money in our pockets.

An American businessman was visiting an asian country (like laos or vietnam) some years ago. A government official proudly showed him a public works project. Hundreds of locals were lined up in a ditch digging frantically. The american asked "sir, why not let these men use a backhoe? It will save much time and human energy. The public official answered that "this is a jobs program and we want everyone to have a job. If we use a backhoe it will put some of these men out of work." Astonished, the American businessman replied..."Why not take away their shovels and give them spoons then?"

I have never yet had anyone answer the question I pose here from time to time: How is taking a million (or billion, etc) dollars from taxpayers, running it through a corrupt government and sending it back out to others possibly "stimulative". How is taking a bucket of water from one end of a pool and pouring it in the other end going to EVER raise the water level?

Cindy, I have indeed benifited from what the founding fathers' gave us, and I am very aware of it; but not from government or the offices that comprise it. "That government is best which governs least". When the government is one third its present size I will begin to muster some respect, till then it aint gonna happen.

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housepoor 3 years, 6 months ago

NPR fires analyst who said Muslims on planes make him nervous; I have to admit, I feel the same way, don't like it but............I'd be lying if I said I didn't feel the same way.

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Jeff Kibler 3 years, 6 months ago

White House takes credit for Bush-era wind farm jobs.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39759042/ns/business/

BTW, estimates are not facts.

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Scott Wedel 3 years, 6 months ago

But NPR has journalist ethics guidelines which that sort of comment violates. If you want to work at NPR you are not allowed to express whatever biases you have.

Obviously, Fox, MSNBC and even CNN don't have that sort of ethics code, but NPR does and there is no indication that they selectively enforce it. If you work in journalism at NPR then you will do so without expressing bias.

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Troutguy 3 years, 6 months ago

So, the stimulus had some success, but we shouldn't have done it? Do you really think things would not be worse had we not bailed out the banks, GM, etc? Even the Republican Bush Administration realized that these businesses needed to be bailied out by the Govt. and threw billions of dollars their way with no strings attached. Sounds like socialism to me, coming straight from the GOP. There's the problem. Both GOP and DEM administration spent billions of dollars to bail out big business, yet only Obama is crucified for it, called socialist, when all he was doing was continuing the path set up by the Bush administration in spending taxpayer money to help stabilize our economy. It gets tiring listenening to people say the stimulus failed with no real facts to back it up. I'm no big fan of all these Govt. handouts to the very companies who caused this mess in the first place, but I'm a realist. The stimulus and TARP had to be done, or things would be much worse than they are now. I don't appreciate the fact that we as a nation are spending billions of dollars overseas for nation building when we could use that money here at home. Just heard on the news today that we are promising Pakistan $2 billion in aide. Why can we spend that money over there without blinking an eye, but if we were to spend that same amount here to help our citizens, it's called socialism. Just don't get it.

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pitpoodle 3 years, 6 months ago

"Stimulus and TARP had to be done, or things would be much worse than they are now." You do not know this is true. You are taking the word of politicians. It is possible that things would not have been worse. We do not know, we were not given that alternative. Do you think they over-reacted? It is possible. Don't believe everything you are told. Re: TARP (a bail out that does require strings attached as in repayment with interest) and the Stimulus (a program that redistributes wealth) are two separate things with two separate goals. If you think Obama is not a socialist, you better think again. I really hate, even the thought of, defending Bush but in this case he is the better of two evils.

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exduffer 3 years, 6 months ago

"Jesse Helms or his grandchild should get aids" no that's not bias.

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sledneck 3 years, 6 months ago

Mistakes overseas don't change the definition of socialism.

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Troutguy 3 years, 5 months ago

No, it doesn't. But the irony is too thick that we spend billions of dollars overseas and think nothing of it, but if we even dare spend that kind of money here at home to better the lives of US citizens, it's called socialism. Since 9/11, we have given Pakistan $8.9 billion. We've spent $1.1 trillion dollars on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Those that call for smaller Govt. need to take a serious look at how much we spend on our military spending and foreign aid. In America's latest gift to Pakistan of $2 billions, $400 million is called 'annual weopons aid'. Wonder what campaign contibuors in the US defense industry are gonna make some cash in this deal? The US accounts for 46.5% of the entire world's military spending. The top ten countries behind the US in military expenditures spend 20.7%. The next highest spending behind the US is China, spending 6.6% of the world's share of military spending. Want smaller Govt.? Let's talk cutting back spending on our military. Or is it just easier to cut the jobs of teachers, police, firefighters? Or cutting back on ecucation spending, infastucture repairs, raid Social Security, etc? Why is the Tea Party, who claims they want smaller Govt., not all over this???!!! If you look up wasteful Govt spending, this is what the definition would be.

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sledneck 3 years, 5 months ago

Trout, We agree. We should stop sending our $$$ overseas to ungrateful nations. We should stop policing the world. The war machine is bankrupting us as fast as the domestic socialism... maybe faster. Both are wrong, in my opinion.

I have said before that I am most often disappointed by the right, not for conservative principles but when the right abandons them. Like others, many in the Tea Party give lip-service to freedom but abandon it at the first inconveniance. The mosque at ground zero for example. Many other libertarian principles are frowned upon by the right and left who think they hold the patent on freedom when, in truth, neither would know freedom if it smacked them in the mouth.

However, the Tea Party is the undeniable best choice for a reduction in government. It may not be fined tuned to everyones personal appetite but at least we can now vote for the lesser of 3 evils instead of two. Gotta start somewhere.

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Troutguy 3 years, 5 months ago

To me, the tea party started out as a legitimite, grassroots movement upset at the status quo of our constantly fundraising, bought off, hypocritical elected leaders. That's a movement I can support. But now, as I look at the faces of the tea party, I really want nothing to do with it. It has been taken over by the fringes of the right wing. Christine O'Donnell, Sharon Angle, Rand Paul, Colorado's own Ken Buck. And, who could forget the mama grizzly of them all, Sarah (don't as me any tough questions you wacky liberal media) Palin. Let's see. O'Donnell has no idea what's in the 1st amendment. Sharon Angle wants to us to pay our doctors with chickens. Paul said he would have voted against Civil Rights Act. Buck compared homosexuality with alcoholism. And Palin? Well, her record speaks for itself. The GOP had better think twice about teaming up with this lunatic fringe, because it may come back to haunt them in 2012. They could become the Whig party of the 21st century.
Anyone who is sick of this us vs. them mentality need to tune in next weekend and take in John Stewart's Rally to Restore Sanity. Finally, a rally for the common American. The ones that are stuck in the middle, watching this disgusting political volley and the takeover of both the right and left by the loudmouth extremist of both sides.

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pitpoodle 3 years, 5 months ago

Actually Buck did not compare homosexuality with alcoholism. He was saying that there may be a gene that could make a person prone to being homosexual like alcoholism that many believe a gene could make a person prone to become an alcoholic. If there is a lunatic fringe element you could take a look at Obama supporters. Personally, I consider Bennet a lunatic who has allowed Obama's every bad decision. One wonders whether he thinks for himself.

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