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Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - M

Locale: Southeast
Re: Re: Redistribution? @ Fred on 08/27/2012 17:47:16 MDT Print View

What's $2,000,000,000 billion for an aircraft carrier when we can pay $36,000,000,000 for these bad boys?

osprey

Ryan

Edited by ViolentGreen on 08/27/2012 18:02:42 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Redistribution? @ Fred on 08/27/2012 17:55:51 MDT Print View

"What's a $2,000,000,000 billion for an aircraft carrier when we can pay $36,000,000,000 for these bad boys?"

Now we're talkin, Ryan! Do I hear $37,000,000,000? C'mon guys, who's going to up the ante in the Penta-thon?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/27/2012 18:00:20 MDT Print View

"Do you see any potential pitfalls in attempting to deploy programs that seem to work in countries of 5-10 million people to a country of 330+ million? How realistic is it really for us to emulate Sweden?"

Very good point, David, and I totally agree that trying to apply any of the Nordic systems across the board would fail here. Indeed, part of our problem is that we have simply become too big and diverse to be a truly free, cohesive society. However, I do think there are lessons to be learned from their experience, as well as from their value system.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/27/2012 18:19:32 MDT Print View

Both the Veterans Administration and Medicare work fairly good here with a sizeable percentage of our population. Either of these could be scaled up.

With the Veterans Administration, all the doctors and hospitals are employees. That's probably overly socialistic.

Medicare would work. Need to fix the problems with precriptions though. And medical costs in general, but that is a national problem we need to fix regardless.

The problem is that the pharmaceutical, healthcare,... companies have bought off our government so solutions are difficult until we address that.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/27/2012 18:22:46 MDT Print View

If the federal government was reduced to almost nothing, then the country could be divided into 50 separate governments. Kinda how it was supposed to be in the first place... The states could do their own thing and implement their own programs. Each state could have their own welfare and their own universal health care or if they didn't want that stuff, nobody would force them to have it or tax them for it. If the federal income tax was eliminated and states implemented their own high income taxes, they could fund these things and probably in a more efficient way. The best thing is, if the states screw something up, only that state suffers and not they entire country. This seems like a really common sense idea, but people give you blank stares or a "whatever" if you try to discuss this.
I mean, why the hell do we have a federal education department? Our country is way too big this.

Edited by justin_baker on 08/27/2012 18:24:05 MDT.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/27/2012 18:26:24 MDT Print View

Justin, sorry but that idea would never work

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
efficiency of large collective public enterprises on 08/27/2012 18:59:17 MDT Print View

AKA gummit burotcracies:

Paul Krugman
July 6, 2009, 8:24 AM
Administrative costs

"These administrative spending numbers have been challenged on the grounds that they exclude some aspects of Medicare’s administrative costs, such as the expenses of collecting Medicare premiums and payroll taxes, and because Medicare’s larger average claims because of its older enrollees make its administrative costs look smaller relative to private plan costs than they really are.

However, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has found that administrative costs under the public Medicare plan are less than 2 percent of expenditures, compared with approximately 11 percent of spending by private plans under Medicare Advantage. This is a near perfect “apples to apples” comparison of administrative costs, because the public Medicare plan and Medicare Advantage plans are operating under similar rules and treating the same population."

(And even these numbers may unduly favor private plans: A recent General Accounting Office report found that in 2006 Medicare Advantage plans spent 83.3 percent of their revenue on medical expenses, with 10.1 percent going to non-medical expenses and 6.6 percent to profits—a 16.7 percent administrative share.)

I'm pretty sure ( this is me now not Paul Krugman) The Social Security Administration also operates under 3%.

Lies I tell ya! All LIES!!

If anyone out there knows of a Hedge Fund or a Mutual Fund (an index fund would be nice) operating at LOWER costs please let us all know NOW!

PS: Ryan, I was lucky enough from the standpoint of curiosity to see one of those fly by when it circled the Wright Brothers National Monument. Pretty amazing.....hard to see where it's much more than a really cool and VERY expensive and somewhat dangerous toy however.

Edited by obxcola on 08/27/2012 19:05:03 MDT.

Michael L
(mpl_35) - MLife

Locale: The Palouse
Re: Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/28/2012 01:01:36 MDT Print View

"Both the Veterans Administration and Medicare work fairly good here with a sizeable percentage of our population. Either of these could be scaled up."


With tons of corruption and waste. Another great idea! Do you ever stop and read the propaganda you spew Jerry?

I know there are tons of problems, but the solution you espew is worse.


And as for your graph, I have covered it before and if you decided to ignore the problems I'm not going to repost them again.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Let's talk Nordic on 08/28/2012 07:36:32 MDT Print View

Michael

If you tell Medicare people you're going to take it away, they complain loudly, so it must be somewhat effective. My wife and mom get medicare and are fairly happy. It costs too much, as does all medical care in the U.S.

There are some rules, like SS has to reimburse claims within 30 days or some such, that make it more difficult to prevent some abuse. A lot of room to reduce costs.

I remember you objecting to my graph, but I don't remember you ever saying why. Must be #3 - you just don't like the data : )

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
50 States on 08/28/2012 08:01:27 MDT Print View

@ Ken

"Justin, sorry but that idea would never work"
I can't tell if you are being sarcastic or sincere. It's kinda the way it was designed.

@ Tom

We are broke. The next time our debt is downgraded and the cost of money increases, we'll be even broker. :-) Programs that are subsidized and still losing money should be phased out. Amtrac and the Post office get it because those are the first ones I think of. Subsidies all/most go... and the Fed stays out of the markets. No more embargos, and no more solar and wind money. Let the markets decide.

No more money handed out overseas, friends or enemies. Federal agencies, like the department of education, agriculture, blah blah blah, are scaled down or gone completely. The military is very inefficient in the way they do business and it costs us billions. Scaling back is fine with me if we change the way we approach these conflicts. We have got to take the gloves off and quit trying to be the world's police.

Medicare is all but done and it has so many holes it's funny. Doctors are turning MC patients away as we speak and the fraud is nonstop. Social Security is broke, but it was part of the general fund anyway. Most of the problems we talk about, healthcare, welfare, education, etc, weren't intended to be a federal issue.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 08:27:59 MDT Print View

Fred

"We are broke. The next time our debt is downgraded and the cost of money increases, we'll be even broker."

Debt downgraded because Rs wouldn't agree to extend debt authorization. Funny thing is, there was then a move towards U.S. bonds - the safest investment people can make. I think that shows the downgrade was unwarranted.


The Post Office is losing money because the Rs snuck through a provision while the Ds were sleeping, to fund 70 years of pension in 10 years. Without that artificial cost the Post Office would be doing fine.

But, with computerization, long term, the Post Office will have to adapt. They could eliminate Saturday delivery. They could reduce hours for low volume post offices, or contract it out to a private business. Maybe sell government bonds and things?


"Scaling back is fine with me if we change the way we approach these conflicts. We have got to take the gloves off and quit trying to be the world's police."

That seems self inconsistent. When someone does a terrorist act against us, we should treat it like a police action, not taking the gloves off and attacking a randomly selected country : )


"Social Security is broke, but it was part of the general fund anyway."

Social security is not broke - funded for many years. At some point we will have to fix it like Reagan did and has been done before. Or payments will have to be scaled back to 70%. But that has some assumptions about the economy and stuff so it could be better or worse.

But, I agree it's "part of the general fund" because the "trust fund" is "invested" in government bonds. That money was spent on bombs and such. If we are to start spending the trust fund on SS payments, we will either have to raise taxes, cut other spending, or borrow more money. SS should have balanced taxes and payments each year. As the baby boomers retire, either payments should be reduced or taxes raised. The "trust fund" was just a piggy bank to spend on programs without collecting income tax.


"Most of the problems we talk about, healthcare, welfare, education, etc, weren't intended to be a federal issue."

Article I, section 8 - The Congress shall have Power to lay and collect taxes, Duties, Imposts, and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide the common Defence and general Welfare of the United Staes

I think that contrdicts your claim

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 09:08:39 MDT Print View

Jerry, I was serious. Look to Texas as an example. The Feds would never let it happen. Not to mention the pandoras box that would be opened

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 09:14:55 MDT Print View

I agree Ken

The idea that the federal government is limited to just the military is a fringe idea that has recently gained some more widespread popularity

Maybe the popularity is because the right wingers in control of the Rs and half control of the Ds can use it to justify cutting programs for middle Americans and increasing programs to enrich the super-rich

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: 50 States on 08/28/2012 09:27:08 MDT Print View

Jerry ya think (sarcasm), but yes that is true (serious)....unfortunately. What is interesting is that the far, far right have taken over the Republican party. The issues that they are bringing to the fore front makes it sound like they want us to go back to the 1950's. Oh and the ignorant starements by dumb, white piliticians over womens reproductive rights .........women and the middle, working class, working poor, and the habitual poor have a lot to lose in this election.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
blame game on 08/28/2012 11:41:20 MDT Print View

Jerry

"Debt downgraded because Rs wouldn't agree to extend debt authorization."

We can't kick the can anymore. Downgrades unwarranted?

"to fund 70 years of pension in 10 years"

So all that time the Dems had control, they weren't funding the pensions? Where has that happened before? Say it aint so. I love it when the clean up crew gets blamed for the spill.

Read the writings Sec 1; Article 8 is not the blank check for the feds to be in anything and everything.

You sound like an intelligent guy. If a program is paid for/funded by the Fed, then the program is broke. Writing IOUs and printing money, doesn't make the program solvent. I love this discussion and seeing people point the finger, or claim to be for fiscal responsiblity but demand their pet projects stay safe. It's going to get us eventually or probably already has and we haven't hit the wall yet.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Funny stuff on 08/28/2012 12:22:38 MDT Print View

Ken

"What is interesting is that the far, far right have taken over the Republican party."

Nevermind But.. If you really believe that... there probably isn't much point in going on.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: blame game on 08/28/2012 12:54:47 MDT Print View

"to fund 70 years of pension in 10 years

So all that time the Dems had control, they weren't funding the pensions? Where has that happened before? Say it aint so. I love it when the clean up crew gets blamed for the spill."

No, it's not cleaning up a past problem, it's a funding of pensions in the future for work not even done yet.

Oh, it's 75 years, not 70, I was wrong

One article that talks about it

http://www.courierpress.com/news/2011/sep/27/no-headline---picket/

Like I said, the Rs snuck it in when the Ds were sleeping

It's what's called "a poison pill" to ruin the finances of the post office so then the Rs can later (now) say "it's broke, we have to privatize it!"

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Funny stuff on 08/28/2012 13:10:59 MDT Print View

"Ken

"What is interesting is that the far, far right have taken over the Republican party."

Nevermind But.. If you really believe that... there probably isn't much point in going on."


I know it sounds like a nutty conspiracy theory

Look at all the federal bills and you'll see how they benefit wealthy contributors. As long as their isn't a recording of a "quid pro quo" conversation, it's legal.

Like the "carried interest" provisions that calls hedge fund managers income long term capital gain taxed at 15%

Obama Care keeps the insurance companies in business. Clinton tried to pass "Medicare for all" but was defeated by insurance company ads. Obama Care was originally developed by the Heritage Foundation as a conservative solution to health care. But since then, the pendulum has gone further right so now this is "liberal".

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
the commission on 08/28/2012 13:38:42 MDT Print View

Obama and the Heritage Foundation partners; financed by the insurance companies and a Perot Trust.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Vote for Sheriff Mack? on 08/28/2012 14:52:20 MDT Print View

"
"What is interesting is that the far, far right have taken over the Republican party."

Nevermind But.. If you really believe that... there probably isn't much point in going on."

Locally the Ron Paul supporters, the John Birch society, groups like supporters of sheriff Mack and the local http://www.stevenscountyassembly.com/ etc. are tormenting the GOP leaders with candidates that support little of the Republican platform. There are no
democrats running for local office and the right wing fringe groups know they can't be elected if they declare other than GOP.

If you believe the constitutionalists and the libertarians have always been a big part
of the Republican Party, then I suppose things haven't changed. GOP candidates
that have been a part of the party for dozens of years are losing support and
elections to the far right-the Tea Party candidates.