Where will the line be drawn?

I was wondering, after Iraq what next? Do you think Bush will cool his jets, or do you think he will really pursue the "Axis of Evil" (Can't he give ANYTHING a clever name? I mean, Operation Iraqi Freedom, give me a frickin break!). Where will the line be drawn? With Iran? With North Korea?

I, personally, think that after the Iraqi conflict Bush will continue with Iran and, eventually, North Korea. I really am apprehensive about the next 10 years. I hope things don't turn out like I think they will, or I will be living under martial law...

Well, he''s definitely going to need a war around election time. Otherwise, people might notice that the entire country is spinning in one of those water conservation toilets that you just have to flush over and over again. Economy sucks. Jobless rate sucks. Deficit sucks. Attacking civil liberties sucks. Health Care sucks. Government is bigger (whole new sections of it in fact) instead of smaller which generally sucks. We''re at war, and that sure sucks. No social security reform, that''s a big clear suck. Hey, but we''re getting tax cuts so that''s great ... oh wait, I''m middle class so it really won''t do any good for me ... sucks. I''m sorry, could someone explain precisely what the Bush administration has improved over the last 2 and a half years. I mean, seriously, what is better in the life of the average American now, than in 1999?

I''m hoping that someone says ""it''s not the administration''s fault"", or better yet blames it on Clinton.

I''m hoping that someone says ""it''s not the administration''s fault"", or better yet blames it on Clinton.

Don''t be ridiculous, we all know that it is the fault of Big Business/Jimmy Carter/This Damned Recession/Alan Greenspan/Rush Limbaugh/The French. It is never the administration''s fault!

Actually, call me bold but I think the next target is Syria.

Rumsfeld has openly named Syria in the press twice in the last week for suspected arms smuggling to Iraq during this war. Now do we believe him or is this prep work for conflict with Syria?

I don''t doubt at all that Syria will be taken out at some time. If memory serves correctly, I read an article on them not only denouncing the Coalition incursion into Iraq, but also supplying weapons to the Husseing regime itself.

Side-Question : Who here thinks that the post-war situation in Iraq will be a mirror of the Afghanistan situation where we actually put the Taliban in control, only to have them run amok ten years later?

Maybe Im a little more optimistic, but I think Bush will try to take down Iran and North Korea, and get removed from office in the middle of it. I hope to God the American people can see through this war bullsh*t and look at the issues at hand when deciding who they want to be President. But I think Elysium is right, he needs a war at election time. However, I think the grudging acceptance we went into this war with might show through at election. Remember, until it was inevitable the majority was still against it. How many will be against the next war? How long before the majority realizes what hes doing? Hopefully its before the next election, I mean he is going about it in the most tactless and obvious way possible. I guess Im an optimist.


Well, he''s definitely going to need a war around election time. Otherwise, people might notice that the entire country is spinning in one of those water conservation toilets that you just have to flush over and over again. Economy sucks. Jobless rate sucks. Deficit sucks. Attacking civil liberties sucks. Health Care sucks. Government is bigger (whole new sections of it in fact) instead of smaller which generally sucks. We''re at war, and that sure sucks. No social security reform, that''s a big clear suck. Hey, but we''re getting tax cuts so that''s great ... oh wait, I''m middle class so it really won''t do any good for me ... sucks. I''m sorry, could someone explain precisely what the Bush administration has improved over the last 2 and a half years. I mean, seriously, what is better in the life of the average American now, than in 1999?

The Economy sucked before he came into office. The economy is growing now. How does health care suck? The United States has the best health care in the world, insurance isn''t the best, but our health care is. I find it funny that you complain about the Government being bigger yet you say health care sucks.

This is why I won''t vote for Bush: Asscroft sucks, I''m with him on the war but I think Rummy doesn''t help us out. I don''t like the damn Department of Homeland Security, it''s just a huge waste. But if the Democrats offer up Kerry, they''ll lose.

Don''t get me started on the tax cuts. EVERY tax cut he has given gives a break to EVERYONE that pays the tax. You can''t have a tax cut if you don''t pay taxes. If he cuts your rates by 5% and someone who''s ""rich"" by 2% they will get more money but you''re getting the larger cut.

The economy is growing now.

I still don''t see that. It''s been my experience that a lot of people who know a lot more about economics than I do think that with better leadership this recession should be long over.

How does health care suck? The United States has the best health care in the world, insurance isn''t the best, but our health care is. I find it funny that you complain about the Government being bigger yet you say health care sucks.

Come. On. There''s an unreasonably huge difference between an agency of Homeland Security and improved health care legislation. The coverage in this country is atrocious, health care costs are rising, and insurance costs are rising more than that leaving the people who need health care the most out to dry. If that doesn''t suck, then what does?

If he cuts your rates by 5% and someone who''s ""rich"" by 2% they will get more money but you''re getting the larger cut.

Let me get this out of the way first. I am fine with seeing those with higher incomes be responsible for a larger portion of the federal taxes. Through a variety of ways, this does not appear to be the case, and those who don''t have the means, income, and education to craftily move their money around in clever legal ways pay the burden. I may be wrong, and I welcome you to discredit that with a legitimate non-partisan source.

It''s been a while since I looked at the tax cut plan (and I don''t claim to understand it fully), but my impression has been that the tax cuts he is proposing will not affect me, and will disproportionally affect those with higher income. First, the abolition of dividend taxes does nothing for the majority of Americans, as it affects only those who receive dividends as direct income (not most Americans). Listen, I don''t care about the abstract numbers of it. When you have a tax cut where over 50% helps that 5% of the population that is wealthy, while 10% or less helps those just scraping by, then it''s a crappy plan. You can justify it all you want with percentages. I just don''t care. I take issue with it on social grounds, not mathematical.

It sucks.

The United States has the best health care in the world

Yeah if ya got the money to pay for it, I think scandinavian countries like Sweden or Denmark have the best health care, with Switzerland coming as a close second.

"Koesj" wrote:
The United States has the best health care in the world

Yeah if ya got the money to pay for it, I think scandinavian countries like Sweden or Denmark have the best health care, with Switzerland coming as a close second.

They don''t. The scheme that people use is judging it by people covered and that''s not fair. Our system is the best. We need to work with business to have them start employee health care plans. We don''t need the government to do it. Tax cuts would work.


It''s been a while since I looked at the tax cut plan (and I don''t claim to understand it fully), but my impression has been that the tax cuts he is proposing will not affect me, and will disproportionally affect those with higher income. First, the abolition of dividend taxes does nothing for the majority of Americans, as it affects only those who receive dividends as direct income (not most Americans). Listen, I don''t care about the abstract numbers of it. When you have a tax cut where over 50% helps that 5% of the population that is wealthy, while 10% or less helps those just scraping by, then it''s a crappy plan. You can justify it all you want with percentages. I just don''t care. I take issue with it on social grounds, not mathematical.

Here''s a little piece of info you need: 50% of the population pays nothing or very little in income taxes. The majority of the population that pays taxes are ""rich"" which means that if you''re going to cut taxes they haveto get a cut. You''re falling for spin. The Democrats plan is a one time rebate that would go to people who do not pay income taxes but rebates don''t work. You also do not understand the reason for the dividend tax cut. It''s not there to help all Americans. It will help people who get dividends but the real reason is to change the fundmentals of the economy. Right now bussiness go into debt to force growth. If we have the Dividend cut, investors will force business to move away from that model and into a more ""safe"" investment. Also, there is nothing wrong with helping people get into the markets. For lower-income people a dividend cut is fantastic because they can invest in companies that pay a dividend and get extra income ontop of their investments. We shouldn''t be afraid of the markets.


I still don''t see that. It''s been my experience that a lot of people who know a lot more about economics than I do think that with better leadership this recession should be long over.

I''m four semesters away from my Econ degree. Anyone who understands Economics knows that the President cannot effect the economy in the short term, unless something *big* happens. 9/11, the war, etc. The economy is not ran by the President but by the Fed. The economy has been growing. Not that many people are out of jobs. Millions have lost jobs but compared to the size of our economy it isn''t that bad. What could have Bush done to get the recession over? Companies weren''t making money. They expanded too quickly on false business plans. The President has nothing to do with that. Blame Greenspan.

The line must be drawn he-yah! This far, no farther!

I''d argue that depends on how you define ''very little'' in taxes. I''m not questioning your education (I know if you''re at UW, then you''re getting a good one). What I am questioning is the real world application of the theories behind this tax cut plan. I don''t think the argument is that a dividends tax cut is completely out of the question, but that this is not the time to be pursuing it. Maybe you can paint me a picture of how this tax cut will help our suddenly massive deficit.

I will say I don''t directly blame Bush personally for the economic situation (which I think is much worse than you''re spinning it). But I do blame the policies he''s chosen to focus on for not addressing or genuinely turning needed resources on the issue.

For the record, I am not necessarily a fan of the democrat plan either. I agree, rebates don''t help.

"Elysium" wrote:
I''d argue that depends on how you define ''very little'' in taxes. I''m not questioning your education (I know if you''re at UW, then you''re getting a good one). What I am questioning is the real world application of the theories behind this tax cut plan. I don''t think the argument is that a dividends tax cut is completely out of the question, but that this is not the time to be pursuing it. Maybe you can paint me a picture of how this tax cut will help our suddenly massive deficit.

Here''s where I stand. I don''t think we should have another tax cut and we shouldn''t start any new entitlements. We''re at war and that means we don''t get any goodies.


I will say I don''t directly blame Bush personally for the economic situation (which I think is much worse than you''re spinning it). But I do blame the policies he''s chosen to focus on for not addressing or genuinely turning needed resources on the issue.

He can''t. It''s not the Presidents job. We are too big for the President to use a magic bullet. We will get better and Clinton''s policies didn''t start the boom. Private Industry and the Congress cutting spending and paying off debt.


For the record, I am not necessarily a fan of the democrat plan either. I agree, rebates don''t help.

Here is the Democrats plan to fix the economy: Raise taxes on the ""rich"" and spend more money on social programs.

The Republicans plan is to cut taxes for tax payers and to raise spending.

I think we should cut spending and tell people that we''re at war right now and we can look at a tax cut later. I wouldn''t raise taxes or cut them.

I think we should cut spending and tell people that we''re at war right now and we can look at a tax cut later. I wouldn''t raise taxes or cut them.

And that is why you will never become President!

I do not envy anyone who decides they want to run a country, it has to be one of the most difficult jobs period.

I was wondering, after Iraq what next? Do you think Bush will cool his jets, or do you think he will really pursue the ""Axis of Evil"" (Can''t he give ANYTHING a clever name? I mean, Operation Iraqi Freedom, give me a frickin break!). Where will the line be drawn? With Iran? With North Korea?

It won''t stop there is no line. As long as Bush and his cronies are in power they will keep the War machine going. They have F****ed America so badly with there policies and spending they can''t stop and give people a chance to realize what exactly happened until they are out of power and there is another administration to blame for the mess that is going to be left.


It won''t stop there is no line. As long as Bush and his cronies are in power they will keep the War machine going. They have F****ed America so badly with there policies and spending they can''t stop and give people a chance to realize what exactly happened until they are out of power and there is another administration to blame for the mess that is going to be left.

By your logic, I could blame Clinton for the economy. The Economy started sucking in 2000, during Clinton''s watch. Clinton was in office for eight years and had much more time to effect economic policy.

Yes you could Ulari, but that qoute you pulled from my post was meant as a response to Asands2 question about what will happen after Iraq. Will America go to war somewhere else or will it end after Iraq.

I say no they will continue with the War machine so that people don''t have time to stop and realize what it is this administration is doing in America. Everyday peoples rights are being walked all over in the name of public safety but most won''t realize it because they are too enthralled with a War taking place half a world away!

North Korea is country that must be dealt with. ''Nuff said.

North Korea is country that must be dealt with. ''Nuff said.

Simply because they start up a nuclear program does not mean they need to be dealt with. Just think what might have happend if we had decided to ""deal"" with the Soviets simply because they had a nuclear program.

North Korea is run by a madman who wouldn''t bat an eye at the thought of using his nuclear arsenal.

The Soviets understood that if they used theirs, we would use ours. Kim Jong Il doesn''t seem to care about the premise of MAD. Furthermore, everyone including China thinks North Korea is a problem.

"scoli" wrote:
North Korea is run by a madman who wouldn''t bat an eye at the thought of using his nuclear arsenal.

The Soviets understood that if they used theirs, we would use ours. Kim Jong Il doesn''t seem to care about the premise of MAD. Furthermore, everyone including China thinks North Korea is a problem.

Lil''Kim won''t launch the weapons. He wants to stay in power and continue to murder his people. He''s taking advantage of the United States right now, we''re in the middle of dealing with Iraq and that lets him to try to get more money from us.

I''m more worried about Lil''Kim selling things to other nations, like Iran.

"Ulairi" wrote:
"Koesj" wrote:
The United States has the best health care in the world

Yeah if ya got the money to pay for it, I think scandinavian countries like Sweden or Denmark have the best health care, with Switzerland coming as a close second.

They don''t. The scheme that people use is judging it by people covered and that''s not fair. Our system is the best. We need to work with business to have them start employee health care plans. We don''t need the government to do it. Tax cuts would work.

Mmh to me health care is all about how many people are covered. I mean in the end what is Health care worth if only 5% of the population can afford it? I know our system is too expensive, but at least I can be sure that I''ll get necessary operations when I need them without worrying how to pay them. Even if I am unemployed or disabled or retired.
Business health care is all fine and well as long as the Business is well. But what happens if the Business goes bankrupt? Or who pays for the retired? Who pays for the disabled who are not able to work at all? A good heath care to me has to include all these people as well. Otherwise it''s worthless.
And the scandinavian countries show how this has to be done. Koesj is right on spot with that statement.

"scoli" wrote:
North Korea is run by a madman who wouldn''t bat an eye at the thought of using his nuclear arsenal.

The Soviets understood that if they used theirs, we would use ours. Kim Jong Il doesn''t seem to care about the premise of MAD. Furthermore, everyone including China thinks North Korea is a problem.

Agree 100%

As for our economy: Clinton stood idle as our economy was reaching critical mass. Remember Greenspan''s ""irrational exuberance""?

When companies like AOL, Ebay, SunMirco were priced as if their profits were like GE,GM,Boeing, McDonalds combined you had to know there was going to be trouble. Meanwhile companies were ramping up production assuming the orders would be fulfilled and suddenly were left with tons of excess inventory. Now, of course 9/11, and war don''t help.

Neither, would I remind you, does corporate scandal. When everyone is making money, no one cares how its made, or in this fact, pretended to have been made. But there''s no excuse not to have looked into those numbers, and here is where I will say Bush has failed in the economy...Enron. But, I will also say that the Clinton administration rode the wave of economic growth brought on by the technology revolution...they had nothing to do with it, in fact, he''s one splunk-stain-on-a-blue-dress away from being the luckiest president ever elected.

Now that our economy is slowly coming back (and it is, just trust me on that one) the last thing we need is government intervention or in any way diminish consumer spending. The consumers have kept this economy from really taking a nose-dive...that would have been very ugly.

The Fed''s (and I freely admit I worship at the altar of Greenspan) have done a tremendous job of lowering interest rates to spurn spending, kept inflation well in hand, and controlling the dollar. I really don''t want Democratic leadership to come in and punish buisness for the sake of government spending.

You really want some ugly truth? Anyone here know what got us out of the Great Depression?

You really want some ugly truth? Anyone here know what got us out of the Great Depression?

I''d presume war, but I''m not certain. Even so, it''s not analogous, I don''t think for a variety of reasons.

I''m backing down on this argument because I think economic factors are a highly complex mish-mash of seemingly unrelated actions that, by and large, are as foreign to me as the rural society of Armenian farmers. I''d rather bow ignorance gracefully than display it further in uninformed arguments.

"Elysium" wrote:
You really want some ugly truth? Anyone here know what got us out of the Great Depression?

I''d presume war, but I''m not certain. Even so, it''s not analogous, I don''t think for a variety of reasons.

I''m backing down on this argument....

*ding* Give the man a cupie doll.

WWII

I''m not saying that Operation Iraq is a godsend to our economy, but I will tell you that that kind of fiscal stimulus (and be sure to mix in a ''fiscal stimulus'' when you dirty talk with your partner ) will help out. Not as much as the previous wars, per say but it will have an effect. At the risk of sounding like a carpet bagger, I''m not saying its good...just explaining the process.

To summarize: the source of any problem our country faces can be directly attributed to either Clinton or France.

To summarize: the source of any problem our country faces can be directly attributed to either Clinton or France.

Hopefully, this war will help drag us out of our recession. I don''t think that it will have as large an impact as past wars because our society doesn''t operate the same way that it did during the 30''s and 40''s. Back during WWI and WWII every business in the country did something to contribute to the war effort. For example, Ford built tanks and later airplanes, Kellogg''s split their shifts to give more people jobs, etc. Today, only specific companies in the ""defense industry"" really benefit from the increased government spending during war.

I believe the fastest way to improve our economy at this point would be to give the average American a tax cut or possibly a onetime rebate. After giving the cut/rebate, the Fed should encourage people to spend their money. By doing this, the government would be spending money in the defense sector and consumers would be spending money everywhere else, hopefully speeding the economy up and drawing us out of this painful recession.

While I believe that upper level tax cuts such as the ones proposed by Bush do work, they tend to take longer to affect the economy that lower level, average citizen cuts. In my opinion, the trickle down theory can and does work, it''s just not the appropriate way to deal with the economy at this time. We need to seize the day and take advantage of the massive government spending that results from war and bolster consumer spending.

Today, only specific companies in the ""defense industry"" really benefit from the increased government spending during war.

Luckily, parts of those companies stretch out into all branches of business, guess that the military-industrial complex has finally found its function now. Permanent war and society benefitting from it, sounds a bit ''84-ish to me. -Big Wink-

"Yomm" wrote:
*ding* Give the man a cupie doll.

WWII

I''m not saying that Operation Iraq is a godsend to our economy, but I will tell you that that kind of fiscal stimulus (and be sure to mix in a ''fiscal stimulus'' when you dirty talk with your partner ) will help out. Not as much as the previous wars, per say but it will have an effect. At the risk of sounding like a carpet bagger, I''m not saying its good...just explaining the process.

To summarize: the source of any problem our country faces can be directly attributed to either Clinton or France. :roll:

Ok, like Elysium, I don''t pretend to know much (read : nothing) about economics, but I have a question.

In WWII, we weren''t involved for the first few years, we were in our isolationist stage. During this time, we must have sold tons of military gear to the allies at probably heavily inflated prices. It was all profit. Nowadays, however, we are using everything war-related that we produce instead of selling it.

Shouldn''t this be a somewhat different economic situation than in the early 40''s? Wouldn''t this actually slow down our economy somewhat?

Permanent war and society benefitting from it, sounds a bit ''84-ish to me. -Big Wink-

Ugh, not 1984 again!


In WWII, we weren''t involved for the first few years, we were in our isolationist stage. During this time, we must have sold tons of military gear to the allies at probably heavily inflated prices. It was all profit. Nowadays, however, we are using everything war-related that we produce instead of selling it.

We weren''t making a huge profit from out sales to the allies. American companies also profited from the re-building of Europe. We are paying the lion share of the re-building costs, why should we give the contracts to allied companies?

As it is currently planned the Iraqis have to pay for the rebuilding themselves with their oil. Which leads to the question why not let the Iraqi corporations do the rebuild themselves and thus getting their economy back on track? That was what the US was doing back then after WWII. Bush''s administration always stated they are trying to do this the rebuild as it was done in Germany/Japan. But currently it just seems they are trying to get their share out of it, which again lets me doubt their integrity and honesty about this whole war.

Lastly an interesting article about how the whole ""pay with oil for the rebuild"" plan might not turn out as planned:

http://www.spiegel.de/wirtschaft/0,1...

The problem is basically that the refineries are broken and need at least half a year for repairing until they can produce in desired quantities again.

We weren''t in a ''war economy'' until we entered WWII. At that point, we geared up fully and employment skyrockted (those that left for war, left open jobs for others and the creation of additional jobs).

I think the 1984 reference is a bit off the mark, though of course the large corporations are indeed going to have defensive contracting in them (ex. GE). At the same time, many defense contractors have very large non-military sections (ex. Boeing, Lockhead Martin) its just good buisness sense.

Look at MO (Philip Morris, now Alteria (or something close to that), if they had just stayed in tobacco, they''d be screwed now. They own Kraft, and in fact split them off just to protect those assets from tobaco liabilty.

In my mind, the rebuilding of Iraq is all going to come down to greed. Will the citizens of Iraq: a) participate in the profits (ie. rebuilding contracts go to them= money=better living) b) be motivated to start small buisnesses (capitalism) c) allow for the capitalistic ''culture'' (lesiure products, brand name merchandise)

It will be very interesting to see, thats for sure. Using South Korea vs. North, it becomes painfully obvious that capitalism works and could usher in a new era for the Iraqi people. Whether or not, the rest of the middle east is going to be comfortable with that...well....thats going to be interesting as well.

As an optimist in this situation, I look at the oil pipeline between Iraq and Israel that was shut down 20 some odd years ago. If re-opened, it could save Israel around 25% of energy costs, it would bind them both in a buisness transaction, and certainly would suggest to Israel the importance of keeping Iraq ''free''. If we could get these countries in buisness parternships...man, what a world it could be.