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Obama calls for new era of competitiveness

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He also touted his small business initiatives at Skana Aluminum Company, which took out a $5 billion Small Business Administration loan in December.

Five billion? How can that be a small business? And how many small businesses are going to find themselves unable to get a loan after the SBA gives that much out?

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The new laws state that the small business can be no more than 200 employees. It used to be revenue based to the tune of 35.5million in annual receipts.

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"Obama calls for new era of competitiveness."

It's not going to happen. Conservatives just don't want their country to recover.

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The USA's problem is not "competitiveness". The problem is that the financial and monetary systems have collapsed, and nobody is willing / able / uncorrupted enough to deal with that. This is just another blind alley to lead people down to keep the media busy and the public in the dark. A lot of talk about nothing dreamed up by the usual spin doctors and political image makers, but not remotely connected to anything in the real world. Just trying to make Obama look busy and like he is doing his job.

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Obama you are a puppet and your minions are fools. Keep talking and the brainwashed people will love you even more. You know that don`t you?

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Obama is right...but I am skeptical that he can implement concrete solutions.

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The only way change occurs is if China stops the loans and America gets off the sauce

why give loans to get Americans to buy worthless items? China can save money and give it to their own citizens, improve the quality of their lives and products.

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I think many people are now realizing the U.S. economy may never recover. Too much debt racked up by the last administration followed by a largely GOP policy-fueled global recession that caused the current president to spend even more. Skyrocketing debt servicing costs and a population who all wants to keep their benefit or subsidy. A recipe for economic collapse if there ever was one. Unless the U.S. makes some big investments in R&D, China will take over. Sorry, they already are.

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a population who all wants to keep their benefit or subsidy.

Some good points, but I am willing to give up some of my subsidies, as long as they control the border, and stop paying services (schooling, medical care, welfare) to the 12 million illegal aliens in the US. It was estimated that LA county alone spent $600 million last year in welfare benefits to illegal aliens. California has a $23 billion defecit. Eliminating illegal alien costs in LA county alone could almost knock off $1 billlion, so imagine if they did that statewide, and the US did it nationally.

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'Sputnik moment'? Obama has lost his mind. He is still talking about spending - it' going to be a long two years until the next election - assuming America is still around then.

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-that's a $5 Million SBA loan. Obama rolls in the Billions/Trillions/Quadrillions now so he may have forgotten what a million is.

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Obama calls for new era of competitiveness

Yes, good, compete. Competition is good. Start getting better trade deals, push school vouchers and increase educational standards for students, offer tax breaks for R&D, revamp the tax system, and start up new energy programs. Not new energy as in the same old solar, wind BS lets get some more research into nuclear power. Hell, I'd even buy his sputnik thing if he set the goal of having a Generation IV reactor in the next 10 years.

Pay for it by ripping apart failed institutions like the Department of Education, thats a few billion right there, and selling off money holes like Amtrak to private companies, maybe they can make people think of trains as something other than a novelty.

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Start getting better trade deals

That is probably one thing that matters the most. We get screwed inthe deals made with China and Southh Korea, etc., yet we let them drop off their goods in America and it is little cost to them.

Conservatives just don't want their country to recover.

Not true, just look at Alec Baldwin, a "super liberal" who is totally against everything the Republicans offer, like tax cuts, but now we find out that he keeps his assest in Conn, and is in a legal issue with NYC where he has a residence but still claims Conn as his home, for lower taxes. Yet, he wants people who make way less than he does to have increased taxes.

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In Obamas world the government knows best, so what place is there for competitiveness? I doubt he even understands the concept.

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Americans have to ask themselves: what hope is there for any eventual economic recovery when the GOP is devoid of any serious workable deficit-cutting ideas, GOP/conservatives' only apparent goal is to score cheap political points, and the Right's biggest star is...um...Sarah Palin? Hope, entrepreneurship and lower taxes aren't going to pull America out of the hole conservatives have made of their economy.

The way the U.S. is going will probably soon make Greece look like a model par excellence.

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Sushisake:

" Americans have to ask themselves: what hope is there for any eventual economic recovery when the GOP is devoid of any serious workable deficit-cutting ideas, "

So does the other political side have any other idea besides increasing taxes? ..... nope, didn´t think so either. How brilliantly innovative.

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Thanks largely to bungled GOP policies, here's a glimpse of how America will slip into third world status: debt servicing costs will continue to eat an ever-increasing portion of the budget pie. To pay the bills, social security, medicare, VA servicces and state services will be cut, teachers, caregivers, social workers, nurses, traffic cops, etc. (most funded by the dreaded 'Big Government') will be thrown out of work. The combination of reduced benefits, subsidies and community services will quick lly put millions of people under immense financial and emotional strain. Need help? Sorry, the state closed down your local GP. Need a job? Sorry, your town's biggest emplower shut down and moved to Vietnam. Oh, and taxes WILL increase and California will very likely default. You think the bush/Obama bailouts were big? Wait until you see what it costs to bail out California.

None of this is pretty but it's a likely scenario unless the GOP stop playing with Americans' futures and start working with the Democrats for Americans.

PS: Why spend billions staying in Afghanistan and hosting 600 military bases around the world when your economy at home is very rapidly going down the toilet.?

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Conservatives such as WilliB just prove my point: lots of anger, zero constructive ideas, and always out to take down the other guy. Cooperation is a mortal sin and welcome to the jungle. Americans can do better than this. We've seen it so many times before. Now let's see if WilliB lashes out again...

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Conservatives such as WilliB just prove my point: lots of anger, zero constructive ideas, and always out to take down the other guy. Cooperation is a mortal sin and welcome to the jungle. Americans can do better than this. We've seen it so many times before. Now let's see if WilliB lashes out again...

@SushiSake3: If you have all of the answers, then why don't you share them. Just bringing up past policies is not providing any answers.

Oh, and taxes WILL increase and California will very likely default.

CA's budget and spending is a result of a Democratic controlled state legislature. Even though they had a Rep. Gov in the past, the state legislature had a majority Dem party, which controlled the budget process. Also, CA has the highest state taxes and many business leave CA due to the taxes, and the Environmental regulations (CAL OSHA puts as many regulations on business as the Fed OSHA).

VA servicces and state services will be cut, teachers, caregivers, social workers, nurses, traffic cops, etc. (most funded by the dreaded 'Big Government') will be thrown out of work.

The costs associated with these people is not so much when they are working, but when they retire. That is why CA is going broke. The public service employee unions and their right of a guarnteed retirement pension (paid for with state tax dollars) is a big problem. If you think I am wrong, just do a research on the case of Bell, CA. A poorer city of LA whose City Manager (a Dem.) was making over $500K a year (more than the President), and due to the way his contract was written, is scheduled to get at least $600K/year when he retires (luckily that may get thrown out).

So do a bit of research, and you start posting about bad GOP and good Dem party.

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SushiSake:

" To pay the bills, social security, medicare, VA servicces and state services will be cut, teachers, caregivers, social workers, nurses, traffic cops, etc. (most funded by the dreaded 'Big Government') will be thrown out of work. "

And where does big government get the money from to pay for all this? Here is a secret, SushiSake: There is no big pot of gold buried beneath the White House, as much as liberal demagogery would like you to believe.

Fact is, the US conservative idea has been "borrow and spend", and the liberal one has been "tax and spend". All you are doing here is running around and telling everyone that "tax and spend" is sooo much better than "borrow and spend"...

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will be cut, teachers, caregivers, social workers, nurses, traffic cops, etc. (most funded by the dreaded 'Big Government') will be thrown out of work.

Also, CA has the second highest paid teachers in America. But on the proficiency testing in math, they rank 41 out of 50. So instead of throwing more money into education as the Pesident said, how about starting to cut. Cut out the teachers that are not making it, get rid of the excess that the unions demand and the oversight. Start teaching only US citizens, or alien children who have properly admitted to America and are not illegal.

Start cutting there and you should start seeing more bang for your buck.

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The president is calling for a new Sputnik moment, like the one in the 1950s when the Soviet Union beat the U.S. by sending a satellite into space—spurring the U.S. to pour money into science and technology programs and eventually make it to the moon.

Interesting Obama feels comfortable mentioning his old Soviet idols.

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Alphaape - "If you have all of the answers, then why don't you share them"

I did. I provided 4 ideas to cut the deficit on this site yesterday.

WilliB - "Here is a secret, SushiSake: There is no big pot of gold buried beneath the White House, as much as liberal demagogery would like you to believe."

I - and I very much doubt anyone else - has heard that 'liberal demagogery' before.

WilliB - "Fact is, the US conservative idea has been "borrow and spend", and the liberal one has been "tax and spend". All you are doing here is running around and telling everyone that "tax and spend" is sooo much better than "borrow and spend"...

Good point. Thanks for raising it.

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I did. I provided 4 ideas to cut the deficit on this site yesterday.

@SushiSake3: If you don't mind, share them in this discussion.

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alphaape -

@SushiSake3: If you don't mind, share them in this discussion.

They were already soundly refuted on May 17, 2009. I'm surprised you don't remember that.

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I wish we had a way to keep conversations going, its getting harder and harder to make a point due to time, however I'd like to say, if anyone politician wants to increase our competitiveness, they need to come up with ideas that make it easy for people to start businesses. The US is getting damn near close to Japan's method and we who are residents can clearly see how bad that works. Case in point: Restaurants, which depend on many unskilled staff, are forced to pay a lot for each person they employ. Construction companies, which need also unskilled laborers are forced to pay a lot for each person they hire. Medicine and Medical products: Have any of you seen how much it costs a company in the US just to get their products through the FDA? While foreign companies get a virtual pass? We are talking about hiring lawyers, back and forth presentations the list goes on and on...

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Alphaape - "If you have all of the answers, then why don't you share them"... I did. I provided 4 ideas to cut the deficit on this site yesterday.

Sushisake3 - forcing Congress to buy Tall lattes instead of Venti is hardly an "idea to cut the deficit"...

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skip - good post, good points. Can probably sum up the problems as "government overreach", "unions", and "lawyers".

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man: you have to see the wholesale prices on medical device parts made in the US now compared to two years ago. My brother is talking about restructuring and possibly getting out of the biz altogether.

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manfromamerica - "Sushisake3 - forcing Congress to buy Tall lattes instead of Venti is hardly an "idea to cut the deficit"

Alphaape - please ignore manfromamerica's deliberately fabricated comments.

Here are the suggestions I posted yesterday.

"If Congress is half serious about tackling the debt mountain - as I hope Presidemt Obama is - and stopping America slipping into third world status, here's some ideas:

1/ Introduce a gas tax to help get motorists off oil and funding terrorist regimes, and to use to fund research into clean, more environmentally-friendly forms of energy and help America regain her competitive edge in an industry that is only going to grow.

2/ Cut the billions that are wasted on agricultural subsidies and earmarks.

3/ stop all the talk about wanting small government. This is an economic and fiscal meltdown, and if Americans want small government, admit that right now you need big government to pay your social security, provide a functioning healthcare system, build you roads, fix your bridges, keep your military going and sell your debt to keep America from defaulting.

Thanks.

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and this - 4/ Introduce a 5% sales tax immediately. Despite the anti-tax hype emanating from the Right, this will make a significant dent in the deficit and won't noticeably affect productivity."

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The president said that while China invested in clean energy technologies, “we fell down on the job. We weren’t moving......By the way, China has been moved fast over the Stealth technologies and US airmen sill be blown out of skies as long as budget slashes!

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China invested in clean energy technologies" I buy from China these products.. yeah, you could buy them there but you'd hardly see them in use.

YOU ARE NOT GOING TO MOVE TO A GREEN ENERGY WITHOUT GAS DRIVEN VEHICLES TO BRING THE PRODUCTS TO YOU AND THE COST IS ALREADY EXTREME WITHOUT SUSHI'S TAX (PENALTY). I once believed in this. I did. really did.

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skip, if you wait much longer to develop alternative fuel sources, the price of gas will get even higher.

Introducing a gas tax could help fund more research sooner into alternative enegy sources that will mean we'll need to use less gas later.

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4/ Introduce a 5% sales tax immediately. Despite the anti-tax hype emanating from the Right, this will make a significant dent in the deficit and won't noticeably affect productivity."

Instead of a sales tax, just start a tarrif on imported goods from China, which currently have no import taxes on them.

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1/ Introduce a gas tax to help get motorists off oil and funding terrorist regimes, and to use to fund research into clean, more environmentally-friendly forms of energy and help America regain her competitive edge in an industry that is only going to grow.

The business will pass this tax on to the consumers, who now have to deal with higher prices for consumer goods and also higher gas prices.

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2/ Cut the billions that are wasted on agricultural subsidies and earmarks.

Good idea. But those subsidies are there because Agribusiness finds it more profitable to ship from overseas, vice grow it in America. Ever had a catfish dinner and found out the catfish was not raised on a fish farm in Arkansas, but imported from China.

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provide a functioning healthcare system,

We just got a massive healthcare system against our will. How about reducing duplicate agencies like the President suggested in his speech last night.

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Instead of a sales tax, just start a tarrif on imported goods from China, which currently have no import taxes on them." Thank you Alphaape.... sushi, pick your friends wisely.

You are telling me that the only way to get our green economy moving is by taxing gas? Well, what's Japan's problem. I really want to know, I really really do.

How about making it easier for alternative energy start ups get loans? how about not taxing their/our products for x years? How about allowing us to hire anyone we want to instead of being limited to union staff? How about redoing every government building moved over first and let the masses follow? How about breaking all government/military manufacturing contracts that have union people and force them to scrap open contracts and reverse them to use alternative? This is of course if you want a green economy... I gotta invite you guys to my house one day and see an "off the grid" Tokyo house that I still have to pay TEPCO a 2 million yen fee to have and I'm not allow my neighbors to receive any stored energy. Oh, and let's not forget the fine I may get by having an "alternative" non-approved by the gov batt storage that is also the same problem in 90% of most US cities, because after all, who works such utility jobs?

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Alphape - "Instead of a sales tax, just start a tarrif on imported goods from China, which currently have no import taxes on them."

Do you want to start a trade war and push up prices for everyone?

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Do you want to start a trade war and push up prices for everyone?" It really shouldn't be taken that way... it would after all level the playing field

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The Gov grew 2x under Bush and 3x under Obama. -The cutting in Gov needs to start now. Less Gov (tyranny) + Less taxes. Tariffs are needed to protect industry and fight off the Globalists (financial terrorists). We all need to start farming for local use (financial speculation (terrorism) with food is driving food costs up dramatically + pesticide and fertilizer use).

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Chop the govt? Sure... If private business is ready to pick up the slack why aren't they hiring despite ridiculously low interest rates? Let's talk when that happens :)

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Do you want to start a trade war and push up prices for everyone?

@SushiSake3: We are all ready in a trade war. Try doing business in China (or Japan) as a foreigner and see what difficulties you will run into. I call starting tariifs as "leveling the field."

How can US and other developed nations compete with countries where they pay a very low wage.

Also, since you want to tax gas, it takes gas to run ocean ships, so increasing the tax on fuel, will make the importation of cheap goods from overseas more expensive.

There is a reason a monopoly stifles business, no competition. If the US wanted to compete with China, break their monopoly on manufacturing by rebuilding our own industries again. The role of government then should be to make sure that US manufactured goods get the protections of fair trade.

President George Washington instituted tariffs on imported goods; his reason was to give the fledgling new US industries as chance to compete, and not get beat out by cheap prices from overseas.

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as for innovating and referring to the sputnik, didn't Obama just recently change NASA's job?

For those who are for a big government, what are you going to do when people you don't like get in and are in charge?

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"and this - 4/ Introduce a 5% sales tax immediately. Despite the anti-tax hype emanating from the Right, this will make a significant dent in the deficit and won't noticeably affect productivity"

Man,sshisake3, you are funny.

Nearly every state has a sales tax.

Many have a state income tax - in addition to the federal income tax.

Really dysfunctional blue states (like California) even try and tax you when you vote with your feet and move your business to red Texas or red Arizona.

America has the 2nd highest corporate taxes in the WORLD.

T axed E nough A lready.

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Nearly every state has a sales tax." Yup Many have a state income tax - in addition to the federal income tax." YUP YUP! Really dysfunctional blue states (like California) even try and tax you when you vote with your feet and move your business to red Texas or red Arizona." YUP YUP YUP!!! America has the 2nd highest corporate taxes in the WORLD." Booom bam bang! You my new best friend, gonna havta drink some rum together.... Yo Sushi, sushi..... oh c'mon, you didn't log off already did you?

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Companies and families were forced to cut back during this depression -yet Gov just got massively bigger. We need to work on this Gov cancer while it is still operable. Gov needs to tighten the purse strings like everyone else is expected to.

Most local Govs have made the cuts, but the Federal Gov has not. Some state Govs are still seeking bailouts/stimulus/handouts.

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yo skip, I'm STILL waiting for some of my buds over there on the right to cough up some original ideas on how to cut the deficit. It's only 11 more months till Christmas - hey, I can wait, mate. :-)

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Still nothing. That's amazing - next to no creative solutions or ideas from Americans, and it's Americans who have the problem. Looks like for some on the hard core Right, it's easier just to hate. Tough luck. You'll have to live with the consequences.

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yo skip, I'm STILL waiting for some of my buds over there on the right to cough up some original ideas on how to cut the deficit. It's only 11 more months till Christmas - hey, I can wait, mate. :-)

repeal Obamacare :-)

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"Wisconsin, a state that will be critical to his re-election prospects"

What?! Wisconsin will be critical to Obama's re-election prospects? I would think he would be re-elected by a landslide!

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manfromamerica, if you had said, 'get rid of this and that and this and that provision from Obamacare' it would be easier to take you seriously. As it is, you're just repeating GOP mantras and the only thing that shows is that you aren't thinking about the issues seriously. Btw, are you really from America? I seriously doubt it.

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waiting for some of my buds over there on the right to cough up some original ideas on how to cut the deficit. It's only 11 more months till Christmas - hey, I can wait, mate. :-)

@SushiSake3: you need to read my posts when I answered your points.

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Alphaape, sorry, I wasn't referring to you. My mistake for not making that clear. Thanks for your comments.

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sf2k - The only way change occurs is if China stops the loans and America gets off the sauce

why give loans to get Americans to buy worthless items? China can save money and give it to their own citizens, improve the quality of their lives and products.

Both countries economies are dependent on each other (and the rest of the major buying/selling countries of the world). If China stops the loans, it will hurt the U.S. economy. If the U.S. can't buy China's products, it will hurt the Chinese economy. Is China willing to cut it's own economic throat to prove a point? If manufacturing and the buying/selling of manufactured goods crashes, the ability of a nation to still feed itself will become the priority and China can't feed itself. Government leaders will survive, of course.

The Chinese economy is a huge economic bubble that is shored up by government edict and their money doesn't not reflect economic reality. Bubbles burst.

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America has the 2nd highest corporate taxes in the WORLD.

Correction: high rates on paper but count in all the special deductions and such and the actual tax rates paid arent that high at all.

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Personally, I think the biggest positive change the US can make would be to ship all the bickering party partisans overseas. Even if someone did come up with a logical plan to make the system better he'll always be opposed by someone on the other side. Why? Because that person on the other side knows the person making the proposals would never accept anything he would put forth himself.

This whole Republicans vs. Democrats things has got to stop. We're essentially being held hostage by people with insecurity issues.

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Alphaape, sorry, I wasn't referring to you. My mistake for not making that clear." No, he was referring to me.... what are you doing here at that time man?

This whole Republicans vs. Democrats things has got to stop." Been tell you guys we need a third party....

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SushiSake:

" I'm STILL waiting for some of my buds over there on the right to cough up some original ideas on how to cut the deficit. "

I can´t speak for your "buds on the right" but I am pretty confident they´d say if you are heading the wrong way, the first thing to do is to reverse directions. I.e. reapeal all the massive new government spending & bureaucracy introduced by your buds on the left.

Now, as for innovative ideas, can you please tell us what other ideas you and your buds have -- besides "more taxes, more government"? (Hint: that is not innovative...)

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sushisake3 -

REPEAL OBAMACARE. It's just that simple. :-)

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The federal government should reduce spending to the budgeted level in 2008 and freeze it there until the budget is balanced. I don't care if the cuts are across the board or if they are more in one department or another - the yearly large increases in spending must stop! We are to the point were the huge deficit and debts alone are causing the economy to stagnate. The interest on the US debt is $4 billion per day - that's insane!

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Been tell you guys we need a third party....

there are plenty of other parties, people just need to have the guts to vote for them.

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skipthesong: Been tell you guys we need a third party....

Whose to say that a 3rd party wouldn't just join in with the polarization? Instead of one group attacking the other we'll have 3 groups attacking each other. It's the "I have to win the argument" mentality that needs to change.

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superlib - the 2 parties don't well represent the actual platforms of the majority of Americans.

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Superlib, good point. It's almost as if the issue at stake isn't the issue anymore - winning the ensuing firefight is.

WilliB, I've only posted my deficit cutting suggestions twice in 3 days. How about seeing some from you. Let's have a fair debate. If you're up to it of course. :-) C'mon, put up 3 good ideas to trim the deficit. You can do it.

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manfromamerica - OF COURSE the 2 main parties don't represent the platforms of the majority of Americans. Have you only just twigged onto this?? They're politicians. What do you expect? Everyone who gets into politics should be told one simple truth: Top level politicians do not - typically - represent the people. I'm amazed how many people I meet who still don't get this and for most, they spend years wondering why their politicians aren't representing them. Understand the simple truth I wrote above and you save yourself years of frustration. :-)

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sushisake3- then why are you such a die-hard Demo? The sad thing is you feel that the government filled with people who don't represent you should be able to dictate and legislate your life.

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Calls for competitiveness, and from a man who basically never worked in the private sector and as a lawyer attacked it. Got to love that progressive sense of humor.

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"Everyone who gets into politics should be told one simple truth: Top level politicians do not - typically - represent the people."

Ssake3- One would never know it from your completely one-sided posts. The Democrats in America can do no wrong, and the Repubs are responsible for not just the US finaancial straits but also "a worldwide depression" .Why the sudden change of perspective?

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Solidaritea - "Ssake3- One would never know it from your completely one-sided posts. The Democrats in America can do no wrong?"

Of course they can - and have - done wrong.

They are just generally more intelligent and make less stupid mistakes that conservatives.

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