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Congressional Progresssive Caucus: The proposed "People's Budget"

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  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Congressional Progressive Caucus: The People's Budget for 2017

    "The Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) consists of one United States Senator and seventy five members of the United States House of Representatives, and is the largest caucus within the House Democratic Caucus. Established in 1991, the CPC reflects the diversity and strength of the American people and seeks to give voice to the needs and aspirations of all Americans and to build a more just and humane society." Bernie Sanders was one of the original six founding members.

    I have browsed the proposed People's Budget for 2017 and like their well thought out proposals. It embodies many of the Bernie Sanders initiatives, but certainly less extreme. For example it calls for "debt free college" instead of free public college, which is closer to Hillary Clinton's position. You can read the bullet points and the details in the first link above. It seems like an achievable, not over reaching, budget that could very well pass Congress if it wasn't for the intransigence of the Tea Party "No Compromise" members.

    Take a look and share your views.

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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     John Nichols, The Nation, March 18, 2016: Only One Budget Proposal Makes Any Sense

    John Nichols has provided an endorsement of the People's Budget. If you didn't care to browse item by item in the budget, Nichols has highlighted what he feels are some of the big positives in the budget.

    It's not often that you will find "Schmidt" endorsing a budget entirely, but I cannot find anything in the People's Budget that I would disagree with. We should use it as a reference point when the Republicans get around to proposing a real budget instead of a Continuing Resolution.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    Schmidt Wrote:

     John Nichols, The Nation, March 18, 2016: Only One Budget Proposal Makes Any Sense

    John Nichols has provided an endorsement of the People's Budget. If you didn't care to browse item by item in the budget, Nichols has highlighted what he feels are some of the big positives in the budget.

    It's not often that you will find "Schmidt" endorsing a budget entirely, but I cannot find anything in the People's Budget that I would disagree with. We should use it as a reference point when the Republicans get around to proposing a real budget instead of a Continuing Resolution.

    Sure Schmidt, I can follow your thoughts. However since it is only a "proposal" and the elections are not over by a long shot, then we'll just have to wait and see who will fight it or approve it.
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Dallas, TX
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    I haven't read the bill or any advanced analysis, just some commentary and summaries.

    From what I understand the PB front loads some net-spending (deficits) with back-end net-revenue increases.

    EPI estimates the bill would lead to a lower deficit over a decade than current law. theweek.com/articles/612550/progressive...

    Then I read this nonsense from one of the Co-Directors of Social Works. huffingtonpost.com/nancy-altman/the-pro...

    "Pub. L.101-508, title XIII, Sec.13301(a), Nov. 5,1990,104 Stat.1388-623, unambiguously states that Social Security “shall NOT be counted as new budget authority, outlays, receipts, or deficit or surplus for purposes of - (1) the budget of the United States Government as submitted by the President, [or] (2) the congressional budget.”

    I'm not sure the Co-Director of Social Security Works or the Congressional Progressive Caucus understands how Social Security 'works.' Shows a very poor understanding of the monetary system that we have. Sets up precedent for concessions in future with the 'bad' politics of higher regressive taxes to 'fund' higher payments to retirees, while creating more confusion about the deficit which only aids Deficit Terrorists. This needs to be taken out of the "People's Budget" and more comprehensive legislation guaranteeing all Social Security payments independent of any tax revenue needs to take its place.

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Carlitos -- Yes as we have discussed eons ago, surplus Social Security taxes are invested in government bonds, the proceeds of which then go into the general fund to pay for current government programs. That tax structure is regressive. That's still okay I guess in our political world, but in my ideal world, we would have no separate social security taxes, and pay all social security and medicare benefits out of the general fund, applying whatever incremental taxes are needed to fund the programs on a pay as you go basis, PAYGO. Taxes would then be assessed progressively. Of course we know PAYGO is almost impossible in our political atmosphere.

    At least it would get away from the myth that we have some kind of pile of surplus dollars sitting in a trust fund that cannot be spent (like a savings account in a bank) or that is going to "go broke" at some point in the future.

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Dallas, TX
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    Um, just hang on there a minute ......... we should assess taxes on the basis of credible inflation forecasts, not government spending. That includes Social Security spending. Taxes should be progressive, and for reasons that go beyond inflation control, but never to acquire the funds for any federal government spending. So PAYGO needs to go!

    And whatever the political reality, there is no reason to insert Pub. L.101-508, title XIII, Sec.13301 into the People's Budget.

    The segregation of accounts effectively means in surplus years Social Security would purchase marketable government securities, which means intergovernmental debt would simply change from non-marketable government securities to marketable government securities. Segregating accounts does absolutely nothing for Social Security solvency concerns. Only addressing the laws that make solvency a concern in the first place can deal with that problem.

  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Carlitos -- You're speaking MMT language, and politicians and the American public do not speak MMT. It's a foreign language to them. Not even Bernie Sanders advocates for MMT. They keep talking about "balancing the budget" and "paying down debt", talking points that really resonate with the vast majority of the American public.

    I think we both agree that taxes, whether a result of government spending or credible inflation forecasts, need to be progressive and not regressive. The social security taxation system is regressive, and made even more regressive by accumulating a surplus that ultimately is spent and lessens the burden on the progressive income tax system. The only way you can make social security taxes progressive is to make them a part of our general progressive income and corporate taxation. That essentially is PAYGO. However, I agree that PAYGO cannot work because of our politics, but getting people to think in MMT terms is a bigger hurdle. No?

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Dallas, TX
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    At times, it's like trying to get a dog to understand why they should not chew on live electrical wires.