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Never has the lying been so blatant in Washington


Orlando Rays
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You would expect that not much of what Barack Obama claimed he would do this year would actually happen. I only watched the last half-hour of the State of the Union, and half of the time I was screaming about what a blatant liar he was. (Especially his claim that no lobbyists had high-level policy jobs in his administration...within minutes fact-checkers found at least four.)

 

One of his biggest claims was a freeze in discretionary spending. Yet the 2011 budget is currently at $3.8 trillion...$300 billion more than FY 2010. If passed, it matches the second-highest year-to-year budget increase in history.

 

Obviously he learned nothing from his 2009-10 election losses. My prediction is that the sheeple will go running back to the Republicans in 2010.

 

This country has battered spouse syndrome. It deserves better, but you can't help someone who doesn't want help no matter how much they need it.

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You would expect that not much of what Barack Obama claimed he would do this year would actually happen. I only watched the last half-hour of the State of the Union, and half of the time I was screaming about what a blatant liar he was. (Especially his claim that no lobbyists had high-level policy jobs in his administration...within minutes fact-checkers found at least four.)

 

One of his biggest claims was a freeze in discretionary spending. Yet the 2011 budget is currently at $3.8 trillion...$300 billion more than FY 2010. If passed, it matches the second-highest year-to-year budget increase in history.

 

Obviously he learned nothing from his 2009-10 election losses. My prediction is that the sheeple will go running back to the Republicans in 2010.

 

This country has battered spouse syndrome. It deserves better, but you can't help someone who doesn't want help no matter how much they need it.

 

 

You may be right or wrong, but your analysis is somewhat disingenious. Discrectionary spending is not the entire budget, as it does not include mandatory spending. So any increases to entitlement programs, which are mandatory, should not be included in your criticism. Also, he said discrectionary spending outside of military spending, so any increases in military spending should also not be included in your analysis. So go back and look at the budget again, and see if he is proposing increase in non-military DISCRECTIONARY spending.

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Well, he said that he's blatantly lying in a way that Washington has never seen, so I think his point is pretty clear.

 

If you want to criticize the actual policy as being something of an empty gesture, that's fine. As El P said, it's the proverbial piss in the ocean. But I don't think Obama is being dishonest on this. I think Orlando Rays is just misinterpreting.

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His overall point isn't that clear to me but I think he was commenting on the political gimmick these discretionary spending cuts represent.

 

The cuts absolutely should be made but they don't represent a sincere attempt to solve our budget/deficit crisis. It's comparable to saying that he is going to help solve pollution of the world's oceans by refraining from peeing in them.

 

We need the cuts in military spending and entitlement programs.

 

 

 

It would take an enormous level of courage/political suicide to accomplish what any president needs to accomplish in terms of cuts to spending, entitlement programs and deficit reduction through taxes. Nobody in this country wants to sacrifice. I wonder if I asked Orlando Rays if he would be on board with tax increase and military spending reduction in exchange for entitlement program reduction, how he would react. I've asked a few conservatives this, and they usually say absolutely not.

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His overall point isn't that clear to me but I think he was commenting on the political gimmick these discretionary spending cuts represent.

 

The cuts absolutely should be made but they don't represent a sincere attempt to solve our budget/deficit crisis. It's comparable to saying that he is going to help solve pollution of the world's oceans by refraining from peeing in them.

 

We need the cuts in military spending and entitlement programs.

 

 

 

It would take an enormous level of courage/political suicide to accomplish what any president needs to accomplish in terms of cuts to spending, entitlement programs and deficit reduction through taxes. Nobody in this country wants to sacrifice. I wonder if I asked Orlando Rays if he would be on board with tax increase and military spending reduction in exchange for entitlement program reduction, how he would react. I've asked a few conservatives this, and they usually say absolutely not.

 

How much are we talking about taking out of entitlement spending? And what portions of defense would be we cutting? Though tax increases would not cut the deficit in anything other than the short term as the economy needs to grow to increase government revenue so I would generally not be in favor of such.

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It hasn't made any headlines, but Obama has been making some major changes with NASA that puts some of these spending gimmicks into context.

 

He has cancelled the "Constellation" program, which was created under Bush as part of his "Vision for Space Exploration." By cancelling this program, Obama ceased funding for lunar landing missions as well as development for the space vehicles that will replace the Space Shuttle (the entire fleet is supposed to be retired this year). This would open the door for the private sector to build manned spacecraft while the US relies upon the Russians to send astronauts to the International Space Station.

 

I agreed with Obama's decisions on this until I found out that he would actually be giving NASA a several billion dollar budget increase. Remember that these discretionary spending freezes would not kick in until 2011, which gives him ample time to fatten the budget (like he's doing with NASA) or with similar projects that he calls "stimulus." In other words, even if he does freeze the spending, the spending levels will be frozen at a level much higher than they should be.

 

 

It's sad to see NASA suffer, but hey in times like this getting astronauts to the moon for the SECOND time is not a priority, even if it eventually leads to a Mars mission. I do not see a reason to scrap the Ares rockets completely, hopefully its just a delay. the rockets are in testing, scraping it now is like another Comanche debacle.

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I like the move toward expendable launch vehicles again but I dislike the Constellation program.

 

Constellation was a folly because it does not use any of the already existing hardware (from the space shuttle or from military rockets). Consequently it became too expensive (essentially starting from scratch) and there have been a lot of problems with the Ares I.

 

The US should have set more modest goals instead of shooting for the moon again by 2020. Now they are going to have to rely on Soyuz to get to the ISS.

 

I like the Orion capsule but I say good riddance to Constellation and Ares.

 

 

the Ares I-X roll control propulsion system components were harvested from decommissioned Peacekeeper missiles, which were to be dismantled by the U.S. Air Force as part of the second Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, called START II. The use of Peacekeeper parts for the roll control system – and shuttle parts for the first stage of Ares I-X – was an effective means for NASA to reduce the cost and development time of this flight test. Source

 

I cant imagine this project being scraped all together, put on hold makes more sense.

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I should clarify by saying that there is some congruency in hardware, despite being very minimal. The point I was trying to make was that it was a huge mistake to select Constellation/Ares over the more logical alternatives in DIRECT or EELV, which maximized overlaps in already existing hardware. Instead NASA decided to develop two radically different launch vehicles with no shuttle-derived launch architecture.

 

 

I have to think that NASA put every effort in to choosing the best option for a launch vehicle, it behooves them to choose the best option.

 

from an article describing NASA's reasons for choosing ARES over the DIRECT proposal:

Several of the Shuttle-derived concepts that were considered during ESAS, and in other studies, were similar to the Jupiter system identified as part of the DIRECT proposal. However, using current ground rules and assumptions, and utilizing validated NASA and industry design and analysis tools, NASA has determined that the DIRECT proposal is unlikely to achieve its claims of improved performance, safety and development costs when compared to the Ares I and Ares V approach. In addition, the limited data available in the online DIRECT proposal do not support the claims of increased safety. Also, analysis shows that the DIRECT proposal would cost more than the Ares family in the near-term and also on a recurring launch basis. Finally, the DIRECT proposal would take longer to develop when compared to the Ares vehicles when factoring in the extensive core stage development effort and the associated acquisitions. Source

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I should clarify by saying that there is some congruency in hardware, despite being very minimal. The point I was trying to make was that it was a huge mistake to select Constellation/Ares over the more logical alternatives in DIRECT or EELV, which maximized overlaps in already existing hardware. Instead NASA decided to develop two radically different launch vehicles with no shuttle-derived launch architecture.

 

 

Or, perhaps, NASA determined that the Shuttle was an expensive clusterf*** that inhibited deep space exploration. Basically within a decade NASA went from going to the moon (think Columbus travelling to the Americas) to repeated missions to and from orbit (think Columbus sailing around the Canary Islands a couple of times and calling it a day).

 

Obama's claim of a lack of innovation makes the Ares sound like a step backward, but the fixation on a launch vehicle is pointless. The forward progress is found in where you can go and what you can do, it is exploration. Besides, refinement is innovation, or at least evolution. The US Military uses a 90 year old machine gun because a new system would be pointless, whatever limited gains that might be possible would not be worth the cost to develop it.

 

NASA is one of the areas that I think that the US does not spend enough, or at least does not spend wisely. The number of private-sector benefits from the space program, as well as the boost to national morale, is worth it.

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Many of the problems with the shuttle program are related to the shuttle itself and not the launch architecture. A DIRECT program would scrap the former and keep the latter.

 

 

My complaint is about the philosphy of the shuttle, not the technical details. The shuttle is not a vehicle of exploration, nor is it a vehicle of exploitation, it is a pointless money hole. We were able to orbit the planet for several days in 1962. NASA should be engaged in the kind of exploration that expands the frontier and provides reasons for national pride. "Put a man on the moon by the end of the decade" type pride. Deep space probes, manned expeditions to Mars and the outer planets, etc.

 

Let the private sector do business in space.

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Meaningful debt reduction absolutely can be accomplished without enacting political suicide. You seemed to overstate the meaning of this term the last time you referenced it and you appear to be doing this again.

 

The American people are well aware that we are staring a debt crisis in the face and they know something needs to be done about it. Reduction can be accomplished without tearing the rug out beneath those dependent upon entitlement programs and making our military defense vulnerable. Liberty-oriented candidates have been advocating such solutions for the 2010 campaigns and have been incredibly popular while doing so.

 

And how are those liberty oriented candidates doing in political elections????

 

 

There is so much wasteful spending in Washington that this will take decades of work.

 

Allowing young people to "bail out" of Social Security and Medicare would not be met with political suicide. Those programs alone have over $100 trillion in unpaid obligations. This needs to be made a priority. Entitlement programs (Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, plus extra) consist of half of federal spending.

 

You mean like Bush's attempt that immediately preceded the republicans losing both branches of congresS?

 

As for defense, Obama needs to consider closing a large portion of the bases around the world. We have 700 bases in 130 countries. Just days ago, protestors in Japan were requesting the removal of 50,000 American troops on their soil. We need to start closing these bases all around the world, especually in stable countries like Japan and Germany.

 

Any policy decision will result in backlash. He would receive some criticism from the neo-conservatives, but the broad spectrum of Americans (including the left proper, and left/right leaning indepedents would likely support such cost-cutting measures).

 

 

We've had this discussion many times. Keep convincing yourself that the American people share your specific views on foreign policy, when in reality, they are fully incapable of seeing the cause and effect disconnect between terrorists attacks and specific military decisions or spending reductions. This is a flaw in their brains that republicans have always salivated over, and continue to do so, even to this day.

 

Just see how republicans are already saying that having civilian terror trials will result in more major attacks.

 

How effecting was Karl Rove at painting Kerry as weak on terror for military spending reductions that had nothing to do with the war on terror?

 

That's a criminally broad statement.

 

Do you think before you type? Criminally broad? Sorry I dont write 10000 word essays on message boards like you. I value brevity.

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Rand Paul, for one, is leading the Republican candidates for KY Senate and leading Democratic opposition by double digits. He has been campaigning on a platform of balanced budgets and wants legislation passed to ensure deficit reduction.

 

He is also someone who supports the war in Afghanistan, so I wouldnt frame as someone who would want to drastically reduce military spending.

 

 

Are you trying to say that Bush's unpopularity was largely due to attempts to reform Social Security and not things such as the Iraq War, Patriot Act, handling of Katrina, etc.? Before Bush took office polls strongly favored Social Security reform; they dwindled as Bush took office. Bush campaigned on Social Security reform in 2000. Al Gore stubbornly said that no changes should be made to a system that was gradually bankrupting us. Much of this had to do with the nature of the proposal itself rather than reform itself. On top of this, you need to consider that the looming debt crisis has become more apparent in light of the tanking economy and the trillions of dollars spent to correct it. The economic conditions aren't the same as they were four years ago.

 

Maybe Katrina, but not the Iraq War or the Patriot Act, and definitely the social security reform itself. The perception of the reform morphs as the debate heats up. I dont think there was anything drastically different as far as the nature of social security reform when in 2000 compared to 2004 or 2005.

 

How does closing bases in Japan or Germany leave the United States vulnerable to Al Qaeda attacks?

 

...I support civilian trials, but I fail to see how that has anything to do with this.

 

Closing bases in Japan or Germany doesn't leave the US vulnerable. Thats my point. It's how the right can distort the act into something it isnt for political purposes. That is what they are doing with the civilian trials, distorting.

 

 

The closings of such overseas bases could be also be met with such popularity by moving troops to where they can serve a more meaningful national security role in protecting our own borders. In light of Obama's decision to escalate Afghanistan and continue the status quo of the Bush foreign policy, there were several polls that indicated that most Americans would support a more humble presence overseas. I think you are again overstating the impact that far-right neoconservatives have in manipulating the broad electorate.

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And I should repeat that these proposals would meet some political opposition from either side of the aisle. I disagree with your statement that such maneuvers would incur political suicide.

 

 

I think you drastically underestimate how public perception can shift once a major policy is attempted in practice. Initially, the theory or concept of the policy is abstract and distant. Opposition groups really haven't reacted to it. No attempts at distortion have been made. It's sort of like a candidate that nobody has run against yet. But once things start ratcheting up, public support of a policy is fully capable, and like to, drastically reduce and shift to public opposition.

 

Right now people support base closings. Wait till Obama actually tries it, republicans react, the media fails to adequately analyze it, and distortion campaigns begin. Then ask yourself if "most Americans would support a more humble presence overseas."

 

Eight years ago, four years ago, and even last year, most Americans favored the proposals of democrats when it comes to healthcare reform. Democrats have always proposed the same core principles in what they want to do. In fact, universal health is a big aspect of that. So nothing has changed over the last year.

 

Except the concept went from theory to attempted practice. And now Americans favor republicans on healthcare reform. Now Americans think the same proposals they liked 8 years ago, 4 years ago, and last year will be bad. I wonder why? Nothing has changed. Except the distortion campaign went into effect.

 

Same with Bush's social security reform.

 

You cant trust public perception when the idea is in theory. Wait till reality.

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