[ExI] Warren Buffett is worried too and thinks Republicans are "asinine"

John Clark johnkclark at gmail.com
Wed Oct 23 15:53:34 UTC 2013

On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 1:58 PM, spike <spike66 at att.net> wrote:

> ****
> > They had to make this whole thing appear dramatic, but it was all for
> show.

So the thing was worth doing because it was so dramatic that there was a
real possibility that the president would think it was real and capitulate
to the Hillbilly's demands, but it was not so dramatic that you personally
couldn't see through it and understand that it was all fake. Is that what
you're saying?

> They need to do things like this in order to support the value of the
> dollar, rather than threaten it.
That is nuts.  Although its trivial compared to actually doing it, by just
threatening to default the mad tea party hatters have cost the economy
hundreds of billions of dollars that you and I will be paying for years.
And what did the Republicans get out of it? Nothing, except that according
to the latest Gallup Poll the number of people in the USA who view the
Republican party favorably has dropped 10 points in just one month, from
38% to 28%; and that is the lowest favorable rating the Gallup organization
has EVER observed EITHER party having in its entire history.

 > and here’s how you will know I am right: we will have something like a
> repeat of this whole thing in December,

At one time I would have said nobody is dumb enough to repeat this whole
sorry fiasco, but that was before I met the Tea Party. If it turns out you
are right then there is no longer any doubt, President Obama successor will
be whoever it is that the Democrats nominate and election day itself will
just be a formality.

> > What if they just rubber stamped the debt limits?

The debt limit should ALWAYS be rubber stamped!!! In fact it's stupid you
even have to vote on something like that. If you vote to buy lots of very
expensive things, like TWO wars, and you refuse to raise taxes to pay for
them, where the hell did those oh so fiscally responsible Tea Party dimwits
think the money to pay for those new huge expenses was going to come from
other than by printing more money?? If you buy something new that is very
expensive and is not in the budget and you refuse to raise taxes to pay for
it then logically you are giving implicit permission to print more money
and a separate vote on the matter is utterly ridiculous.

 > Then the government has open ended permission to print as much currency
> as it needs or wants

Exactly, and the determination of how much stuff the government needs or
wants is made by the House of Representatives. If they decree that we need
something or they just really really want it then they're going to have to
pay for it, and if it's expensive there are only 2 ways to do that:

1) Raise taxes, that is to say take more money from you and me to pay for
that new thing that we need so very badly.

2) Print more money to pay for it.

> How would foreign debt holders see that?

As sane, because the only other alternative is to become a deadbeat and
welsh on your bills and gain a worldwide reputation as somebody who does
not keep his word.

> My contention is that the US federal government could find ways to
> operate on about three quarters of what it is now spending, which is what
> it is taking in.

Today the US federal government is employing the fewest people since 1966,
and back then 4.4% of the people worked for the government, now it's just
2%. And politicians, especially tea party politicians, love to shout that
in general we should spend less money, but when asked for specifics about
what exactly we should cut they suddenly get very shy. Basically they say
we should cut all government programs except for pork-barrel projects in my
district (or state if I'm a senator) that will help me get reelected.  And
if you vote for my pork-barrel projects I'll vote for your pork-barrel
projects. In that regard at least the Tea Party politicians are no
different from anybody else.

  John K Clark
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