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Matthew Perry
(bigfoot2) - F

Locale: Oregon
$17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/19/2013 18:20:07 MDT Print View

" Let's send an envoy over to the 'stans and tell them how super sorry we are, open up some dialogue where we can all share our feelings, and see how it works out."

That would be funny, but, unfortunately, i'll bet that is what will happen very soon.

Edited by bigfoot2 on 10/19/2013 21:41:53 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/19/2013 19:05:31 MDT Print View

"To be clear, that $328 billion has already been appropriated - approved by Congress - so it's not new spending."

You got that part right.

"Still, the Treasury Department sure has gotten the new fiscal year off to a bang of a start, eh?"

What do you expect them to do, take one in the chest for Congress? They're doing exactly what they're supposed to do, indeed have to do.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/19/2013 19:15:57 MDT Print View

"You are also forgetting the series of terrorist attacks (which I so kindly listed for you) which were for all intents and purposes unanswered by the U.S. On top of this, we removed our troops from Beirut after the barracks bombing under Reagan and Somalia after the battle of Mogadishu (again Clinton)."

All of this is related, Ian. Since we're on the subject of history, you would do well to question why we had Marines in Beirut in the first place, intervening on the side of Christian factions in a civil war that was none of our business in the first place. Ditto Somalia. The rest, as you say, is history. As long as we are intervening in other peoples' countries, occupying them, breaking their furniture, violating their customs, leaving nothing but destruction and chaos in our wake, there will be retaliation at every opportunity they can find, e.g. the embassy bombings, Khobar towers, WTC, Westgate Mall, and on and on. The sooner we get the he!! out of West Asian countries and work on solving the root causes of their anger, the sooner we will see an end to what you call terrorist attacks, and the sooner we can start to regain our own freedoms that have been lost in the war on terror. How many failures will it take? Do you think for a minute that we won in Iraq? Are winning in Afghanistan? It will be the same in any other country in that part of the world. As I said earlier, they don't make very good pets. Meantime, the Chinese are slowly catching up with us and gobbling up oil contracts all over the place, a huge copper mining contract in Afghanistan, for which we provide the security, etc. Some victory, huh?

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/19/2013 19:35:04 MDT Print View

as long as we're talking history and 9/11

before 9/11, during Clinton, there was a plot called Bojinka where Al Queda was going to hijack airplanes and crash them into buildings in the U.S.

maybe more due to luck or whatever, the plot was discovered and prevented

then the Clinton administration was on high alert trying to prevent another plot. When the Bush administration came on board, many Clinton people warned their Bush counterparts - Clinton, Gore, whoever was replaced by Rice, etc.

The Bush administration arrogantly ignored this and was asleep to the 9/11 attack, more into planning an Iraq invasion, at least that's what some Bush caninet person said, Treasury or something, I forget

Not that they could have prevented 9/11, but they could have at least tried

That's what we should be doing (intelligence) instead of military actions

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/19/2013 23:48:42 MDT Print View

"Who said that? Please don't put words in my mouth."

I did. My post, not yours.


"You are also forgetting the series of terrorist attacks (which I so kindly listed for you) which were for all intents and purposes unanswered by the U.S."

Read up on our history. We the United States have time and time and time again coveted others' land and wealth while cloaking our greed in moralistic terms. Since the Indian days of old, we have invaded their lands and then decried the "need" to defend our women and children who were scalped and butchered by "savages". And we said back then that failure to respond would encourage more savage acts - but we wilfully neglected to look into why those women and children were there in the first place.

Nowadays, we don't occupy lands outright but we insist on 'control' and we define anything and everything that happens anywhere in the world as part of OUR national interest! Yes, I mentioned humility... and I see its absence at work here in some of these posts. Arrogance on the part of our political leadership. And ignorance on the part of the herd. The lethal combination leads to our repeated interventions in the affairs of others - which serves as fuel to the fire that is increasingly harder to keep in control.

And when our president makes state visits abroad nowadays - the security detail reaches grotesque proportions. But it's a dangerous world out there? Yeah, but who helped make it so by grandstanding (and worse) as the world's lightning rod?

So yeah, instead of humbly looking at how we need to think and behave differently - we can expect some of the 'patriotic Americans' here to just dumb down and mock the entire issue by suggesting 'we all say super sorry' or maybe do a kumbaya of sorts and there will be world peace...

Edited by ben2world on 10/20/2013 00:22:43 MDT.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
A Picture Says a Thousand Words on 10/20/2013 00:05:57 MDT Print View

Why we have such high budget deficits? TWO main reasons: defense and social spending!



Annual spending on defense (illustrated above - Washington Post) and social spending are the two 800-pound gorillas. Pure coincidence - or simply the spending habits of a population that feels at once entitled - and insecure??

Edited by ben2world on 10/20/2013 00:18:27 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: A Picture Says a Thousand Words on 10/20/2013 08:57:12 MDT Print View

I like this picture, but maybe there's too much info:

usspendingvstime

There were big spikes for WWI and especially WWII

From WWII to 1970, the spending gradually went up to about 25% of GDP and has stayed their since. It's not like the government keeps growing out of control - it's been pretty steady since 1970.

The amount of military spending has been steadily decreasing. It's now less than pensions, health, and education. Further reductions won't affect the over-all very much, but we should continue this trend because like Ben's chart shows, there's still room for reduction.

Pensions (social security) are stable - no big crisis to solve.

The biggest problem is that health costs keep increasing - this is now (barely) the biggest category. If it gets worse we're screwed.

Plus, there are a lot of health costs in the other 75% of the economy.

Fortunately, with Obamacare we've taken a first step to fix this, but the jury's out on how effective this will be. There will undoubtadey be things to fix, if we can just get off this hysteria of demanding that it be repealed.

And, of course, the biggest problem is campaign reform to get the money out of politics because that makes it almost impossible to do anything.

Ian Destroyer of Forums
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 09:01:57 MDT Print View

"we can expect some of the 'patriotic Americans' here to just dumb down and mock the entire issue" [humility font]

Just so I'm clear, I'm humble and have a correct understanding of history as long as I agree with you? Let's get our facts straight before proceeding:

1. At no time did I make a proclamation that American feces is odorless
2. I'm well aware that every time the west has tried to impose our collective influence in the middle east, it has backfired on us
3. I'm well aware that we've been fighting people who we funded, provided weapons, and have directly or indirectly provided WMDs to
4. I'm well aware of our defense budget and would like to see the U.S. stop playing the world's 911 service. I don't have a problem with our peacekeeping missions as long as we are part of a larger coalition
5. There are no substantial natural resources in Afghanistan for the U.S. to exploit. We are not there to establish vacation condos and strip malls. We are admittedly trying to establish a stable government so we can leave Afghanistan for good in spite of our poor track record with puppet regimes (batting 0 I believe)
6. You are correct. While I know that it's en vogue to be a self loathing American, I'm patriotic to my fellow citizens and the Constitution with no apologies. Public safety has been my life's work domestically and from abroad. In spite of all this, I'm a true text book liberal. I look at all issues (including Afghanistan) based on their merit and don't subscribe to any dogma. Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq are distinct from each other as are my opinions of those individual conflicts.

Let's rope this back in to the sub-topic at hand which is the post 9/11 invasion of Afghanistan and its impact our our economy.

George Bush part deuce in spite of all his massive faults is not responsible for America's past mistakes and how we've mishandled the middle east prior to when he took office. He's certainly responsible for how we've mishandled the middle east afterwards.

I believe the invasion of Afghanistan was completely justified following 9/11 seeing that there was a clear nexus to Afghanistan; we don't have to agree on this and that's fine. I disagree with how the war has been handled. I am disgusted with most (certainly not all) of the no bid contractors who were given bazillions of dollars thanks to Mr. Dick Haliburton Cheney. I'm disgusted with how many of these contractors have drug their heels on projects in both conflicts to keep the money rolling in.

Edited by IDBLOOM on 10/20/2013 22:18:23 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 09:47:03 MDT Print View

Invading Afganistan after 9/11 - maybe - probably a different solution was possible but I'll give them the benefit of the doubt

From there, I think we're in agreement, it was totally screwed up

If we had followed "Powell Doctrine" and gotten out within a year, it would be long forgotten, people would have forgiven us because it was somewhat justified by 9/11, no big impact on our military people and economy

I hope 150 years from now people will look back at the wars being done by us and others like we look back on slavery now

Matthew Perry
(bigfoot2) - F

Locale: Oregon
$17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 13:32:19 MDT Print View

Ian, this one's for you ;) :

k

Ian Destroyer of Forums
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 14:22:04 MDT Print View

Thanks.... I think..

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Re: Re: Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 14:40:47 MDT Print View

"While I know that it's en vogue to be a self loathing American, I'm patriotic to my fellow citizens and the Constitution with no apologies. "

This precludes you from being a liberal with certainty. You understand that anyone with internet access, can read these posts? I just want to make sure you know what you're doing.

Ian Destroyer of Forums
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 14:51:27 MDT Print View

Fred,

I realize that the terms conservative and liberal have been perverted to a point that they are now meaningless. I'll stick with the dictionary's version for this discussion:

lib·er·al (lbr-l, lbrl)
adj.
1.
a. Not limited to or by established, traditional, orthodox, or authoritarian attitudes, views, or dogmas; free from bigotry.

"You understand that anyone with internet access, can read these posts? I just want to make sure you know what you're doing."

I guess this statement flew over my head but should I read this tongue-in-cheek? Either way, I stand behind what I said.

Fred Thorp
(BFThorp) - F
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 16:02:46 MDT Print View

Sorry forgot the sarcasm font

Ian Destroyer of Forums
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 17:03:10 MDT Print View

Roger that

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: $17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 21:02:12 MDT Print View

Yup

Matthew Perry
(bigfoot2) - F

Locale: Oregon
$17,000,000,000,000.00 and counting on 10/20/2013 21:52:47 MDT Print View

Dragon Day. Watch the movie before it becomes a documentary:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=RdR6La5T0n0

Richard Lyon
(richardglyon) - MLife

Locale: Bridger Mountains
$17 trillion deficit on 10/20/2013 22:09:17 MDT Print View

Simple answer of who's to blame. In alphabetical order, the Democrats and the Republicans. I repeat my earlier remark - I wish there were some way to throw them all out.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: $17 trillion deficit - blaming the symtoms on 10/20/2013 23:52:02 MDT Print View

Methinks it's too easy to blame the two parties and call it good. Some here are still kneejerking to tired labels - or mindlessly equating a call to humility and self critique as 'self loathing'.

In our democracy - we the citizenry are responsible for the government we have - period. But few care to look into ourselves.

Richard - I too wish to throw this current, toxic batch of political leadership out - but despite their behavior and irresponsibility over years - each side still has plenty of staunch supporters! And so the grinding saga continues.

Edited by ben2world on 10/20/2013 23:59:18 MDT.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Sums it up on 10/21/2013 07:38:09 MDT Print View

Ben :
"Nowadays, we don't occupy lands outright but we insist on 'control' and we define anything and everything that happens anywhere in the world as part of OUR national interest! Yes, I mentioned humility... and I see its absence at work here in some of these posts. Arrogance on the part of our political leadership. And ignorance on the part of the herd. The lethal combination leads to our repeated interventions in the affairs of others - which serves as fuel to the fire that is increasingly harder to keep in control."


That about sums it up.
This could be the the first paragraph of the history chapter that future generations will read about our times.