Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Figuring Out the Economic Puzzle

National Debt Clock

This is difficult at best since most of American corporate media exists in order to lure people into buying stuff. This includes investment instruments. Since the object is to create an evironment encouraging buying the information that squelches the impulse to buy is buried or denied a hearing. This is why negative news is always "startling". Seemingly out of nowhere. For example, the woes of Ford and GM were obvious and long term and easily seen from afar yet the crisis, when it happened, seemed to be sudden.

It wasn't.

Some things are allowed to quietly grow in the dark. I remember when the Concord Coalition actually made a huge ruckus all the time.Now, in deferment to the ruling class, it is now a toothless organization dedicated to "fixing" Social Security of all things. Just today, thanks to we learn Congress plans to raise the debt ceiling yet again.

This alarming news doesn't appear at the official Concord Coalition site. It is not on the NYT or the WP front pages. It isn't on CNN or the other stations. I did find an article about a science magazine. Huh? Wot? Eh?

House moves to raise U.S. debt ceiling

WASHINGTON, May 3 (UPI) -- The U.S. House has sent legislation to the Senate that would raise the federal debt limit to nearly $9 trillion, a $781 billion increase.

House panel approves $26.2B in '06 spending (May 4, 2005) -- A U.S. House of Representatives panel Wednesday approved a $26.2 billion interior spending bill, the first appropriations bill of the 2006 budget ... > full story

House approves abortion restrictions (April 28, 2005) -- The U.S. House has approved legislation making it illegal to take minors across state lines for abortions without parental consent. The measure, ... > full story

House bill would increase bank insurance (April 27, 2005) -- A House panel Wednesday approved an increase in the federal deposit insurance limit to $130,000 per bank account. The House Financial Services ... > full story

Senate moves forward with $284B highway bill (April 26, 2005) -- The U.S. Senate moved ahead Tuesday with consideration of a House-approved $284 billion highway spending bill, despite efforts to stall the ... > full story

Senate signals problems with Iraq funding (April 19, 2005) -- In a symbolic blow to the Bush administration, the U.S. Senate has signaled its disdain for funding Iraq military operations outside the annual ... > full story

The House agreed to the increase under an automatically executing provision in the 2005 budget resolution approved by the House and Senate late last week.

The House officially sent the Senate a separate piece of debt-relief legislation increasing the limit as mandated by the self-executing provision in the budget resolution.

Gaining approval of the separate bill through the gambit avoided the need for a politically costly debate on the House floor over increasing the debt ceiling again and highlighting the inter-party split on the issue.

Fiscal conservatives within the GOP have been clamoring for greater fiscal discipline on budget matters considering the massive federal deficits, estimated to reach another record in dollar terms this year, for the second consecutive year.

However, the Senate is not expected to soon take up the legislation and might even take another route toward increasing the limit, possibly opening the issue to greater legislative scrutiny and requiring an actual floor vote in the House.

AP had the story! There is no excuse about this. It isn't unknowable like the Cheney energy commission information. The major papers trumpet the "decline" in the trade deficit! But won't touch this story. In the Congressional news sections, not a peep. Obviously, the editors at the major papers though this news isn't major.

Oh, and the new ceiling? Did we forget to tell you what it is?


This ungodly amount astonishes. It is absolutely incredible. The "tipping point" for our entire country's future is around $12 to $15 trillion. This is when we go officially belly up. Debts overwhelms our systems utterly. The history of this disaster is simple. Every time it looked like America would become solvent, craven politicians exclusively on the right would talk tax cuts so they could bribe their way to power. This is how and this is the only reason how they gained such an iron grip of power on our nation. Bribes. This is why the NYT and WP and other entities support the GOP. All the entities that paid taxes no longer have to pay a penny thanks to this bizarre and deadly concord. Breaking this is nearly impossible. Anyone who suggests a sane approach on taxes is shot down. Witness how they attacked Dean over this.

Monopolizing the information about our debts have allowed our rulers to run up a giant deficit in our collective names. Everyone's signature is on this document, our debt instruments, and it is written in blood. The Devil in the Details holds this document and intends to use it against all of us.

Nine trillion! We though we would never see the day. Back when it was a mere four trillion there were fierce fights in Congress to stop this hemorraging. Everyone swore they would balance the budget and be good. Then they went insane. Even when they cravenly raised the ceiling to eight trillion it made a tiny ripple in the news. The nine trillion, less than a year and a half later!---no comment at all. Seems the bigger this monster grows the less we can see it. Gambling addicts and shop lifters and embezzlers all work this way. The first amounts they abuse or steal or lose makes a big impression on their sense of guilt and horror but as they lose control it comes easier and easier until it is completely out of control and crashes. This cycle is psychological. This is why just last month Congress cut taxes another $108 billion. Who cares? It doesn't matter.

$1 trillion in debt in 1982. $9 trillion in 2006. That is just 24 years. Doubling the debt won't take 24 years. It will take, at this rate, 10 years. We will never reach $18 trillion. Long before that, we crash and millions of Americans will starve to death as our social systems collapse.

You would think this would rate at least a page 25B below the fold news column.

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