Thursday, June 23, 2011

Eric Cantor announces he is introducing a balanced budget amendment

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) today issued the following statement regarding House consideration of a balanced budget amendment, H.J. Res. 1, sponsored by Congressman Bob Goodlatte:

“We are being asked by the Obama Administration to approve a debt limit increase. While President Obama inherited a bad economy, his overspending and failure to enact pro-growth policies have made it worse and now our national debt is currently more than $14 trillion. House Republicans have made clear that we will not agree to raise the debt limit without real spending cuts and binding budget process reforms to ensure that we don’t continue to max out the credit card. One option to ensure that we begin to get our fiscal house in order is a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution, and I expect to schedule such a measure for the House to consider during the week of July 25th. I have no doubt that my Republican colleagues will overwhelmingly support this common sense measure and I urge Democrats to as well in order to get our fiscal house in order."

UPDATE: Oh, wait! It gets even crazier. Again, from ZH:


Red Rock said...

How about an audit the Food Stamp program? This kind of mismanagement is infuriating. You want to understand why the Tea Party may be economically misguided but rightfully pissed off about government waste and abuse, see this

Mario said...

@red rock

ok...but this really has nothing to do with deficits or insolvency or the US standing in the world economy. The underlying premise is still balancing the budget NOT pure and simple litigation and proper policy implementation. High-paying actors can get unemployment too btw. Either way everyone is still not even in the ball park in their reasoning and understanding of what is happening in this country's economy today.

Food Stamp theft is tiddly-winks in the face of our real challenges today. To me, it's almost clinically insane that we have the types of discussions we have in the media and in politics regarding these economic issues...clinically insane.

Mario said...

especially considering the amazing rally the government had to get the banks (and whoever else) bailed out asap and big time.

Red Rock said...

You somewhat miss the point. Regardless of accounting identities, for people to support government spending, they need to believe the spending is at it's core, fair and just. The Tea Party was furious that banksters were bailed out (although the media usually misreports this.

Some budget deficit opposition is really just opposition to giveaways to favored groups (whether they be banksters or at the other end of the spectrum recipients of food stamps that don't deserve them) and government officials who couldn't give a rat's ass that all this goes on.

If you try and reduce it all to accounting, you'll never understand the outrage.

Mario said...

MMT-ers can't stand the bailouts either. So what's your point? Are we comparing food stamp fraud to the bailouts now? And this is fraud from millionaires no less...the same rich people who likely think the government is inefficient when they in fact are the ones breaking the law. The lack of intelligence in this "argument" is just mind blowing to me.

"Fair and just"? That's what the courts are I said litigate food stamp crime (seriously man). Government spending is not some new phenomena for the USA that just came into existence since Obama got elected...Reagan spent, Bush spent, Clinton spent, EVERY PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS SPENDS!!! This is not about the validity of government spending at all. To question the idea of government spending is to literally question the existence of a government at all. At some point it becomes insanity. If these Tea Partiers are anarchists then fine but just come out and say it like it is...but to say we need to balance the budget to maintain economic prosperity is just plain false and stupid and to say that we don't like the spending b/c it's not "fair and just" is a cop-out...that's what the courts are for and it has nothing to do with government spending. There are many things we just don't like or want in politics but we compromise. Can you imagine that I too don't feel that some things aren't "fair and just" either? But I am not then concluding that government spending needs to cease b/c of that. What's the logic in that?!?! There are things that we must not allow to happen b/c of sound economics and math and logic. Discerning the difference is a sign of maturity and responsibility imho...neither of which is very rampant in DC as I can see no matter how justified or angry we may feel....logic is still logic..gravity still exists and we need to respect that and cooperate with that. Government spending is still vitally important and always will be. No question, regardless of whether we like it or not...and by the way is it now official that Tea Partiers do not support Food Stamps too? B/c I thought at first you were saying it was just the fraud that was the problem...which is a legal issue...not the program itself, which is a spending issue.

Again efficiency and/or bailouts DO NOT justify a balanced budget amendment. They are completely unrelated. I'm pissed as well for all sorts of reasons but I am not throwing my brains out the door!!! Let alone the entire country past, present, and future with such an insane proposal as this.

It's fine to be angry...I'm angry. But it's not fine to be willfully uneducated and stupid...particularly when you're a public leader (or supposed to be) and attempting to draft public policy.

Accounting doesn't apply to economics as much as math doesn't apply to chemistry. That argument is so trite and elementary it speaks again to the real issue here...failure to accept reality and education. Like I said, clinically insane.

beowulf said...

The number of food-stamp recipients on George W. Bush's watch rose by more than 50%, even before the recession hit in 2007... President Bush and his food-stamp chief Eric Bost "went on a quiet crusade to expand eligibility, increase enrollment, and reduce stigma around nutrition aid.

Good for W. The real problem with food stamps is only half the people who are eligible for it enroll (in some rural counties, closer to two-thirds don't). Besides cheating their fellow Americans of the aggregate demand boost to GDP, not taking benefits puts children (who are blameless in their choice of parents) at risk for malnutrition.

The "waste and abuse" that pisses you off (and yes, food stamps programs are run by states, not Uncle Sam) are. for the most. part conscious efforts to make it easier for those who need assistance to get it.

Only a moron would think there's much danger of, "Trust Fund Babies driving Rolls Royces to get free food courtesy of Uncle Sam". The govt does a lot of things wrong, but spending serious money to keep children from going to bed hungry is not one of them.

Mario said...

yes, food stamps programs are run by states, not Uncle Sam

good point. This effectively makes this entire issue of Food Stamps totally moot in regards to the balanced budget amendment or whatever "anger" there might be out in the country. Just another example of lack of education and acceptance of reality. Ugh

Crake said...

I think RedRock’s point is very valid in that is what people see and we must deal with it.
Yes, it is a very big straw man. Yes, many are grabbing that as an excuse to support their positions. But if a material number of people think that way, then in a political system, we need ways to combat that thought process – we can’t just ignore it because their way of thinking is just painfully wrong.

Mario said...


maybe so. maybe so.

it seems that maybe repetition of economic fact, over and over again and having conversation with those that want to engage such discussion is what I know to do.

Spread the word, tell the facts, discuss, think, etc.

Then of course there's always prayer!!! LOL

Mario said...

and asking questions too and seeking to understand another's viewpoint and being willing to shoot it down if it is just dangerously false or at least asking them if that is their intention to be so dangerous and malicious, in which case there you go! LOL

beowulf said...

Mario, its administered by states but funded by the US Government. In terms of fiscal policy, its one of the best automatic stabilizer programs. Congress sets an eligibility formula and provides funding for all takers. Since its income-scaled, expenditures go up in bad times and go down in good times.

"To carry out this chapter, there are authorized to be appropriated such sums as are necessary for each of fiscal years 2008 through 2012"

Mario said...

thank you B! Sounds good to me.

Mario said...

well respecting others even if their ideas are not accurate or loosely formed is also a good idea and could possibly be a game changer in tipping the scales to the other side.

Sometimes I forget that one in "the heat of battle" if you will...but really it does make a big difference and also keeps the line of communication open and available. The red telephone, as they say. ;) Without that, is unlikely for change to really come and seep into the pores of a society. ;)