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I often hear the racus right whine that the Democrats are the party of tax and spend. But the fact is it's the republicans , especially Reagan and Bush II who were the party of spend and barrow. Which do you prefer, paying as we go or borrowing from future genrations?

From Wikopedia

Only 5 of the past 40 budgets have been surpluses. All 5 were by Democratic presidents.
The twenty years of budgets prepared by Republican presidents increased the national debt by $3,800,000,000,000. The average yearly deficit under Republican budgets was $190 billion.
The twenty years of budgets prepared by Democratic presidents increased the national debt by $719,500,000,000. The average yearly deficit under Democratic budgets was $36 billion.

For a more in depth analysis of the Bush boondoggle read this
http://slate.msn.com/?id=2059246
 

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Only 5 of the past 40 budgets have been surpluses. All 5 were by Democratic presidents.
http://www.letxa.com/articles/16

The Myth of the Clinton Surplus light:
October 31st, 2007

Time and time again, anyone reading the mainstream news or reading articles on the Internet will read the claim that President Clinton not only balanced the budget, but had a surplus. This is then used as an argument to further highlight the fiscal irresponsibility of the federal government under the Bush administration.

The claim is generally made that Clinton had a surplus of $69 billion in FY1998, $123 billion in FY1999 and $230 billion in FY2000 . In that same link, Clinton claimed that the national debt had been reduced by $360 billion in the last three years, presumably FY1998, FY1999, and FY2000--though, interestingly, $360 billion is not the sum of the alleged surpluses of the three years in question ($69B + $123B + $230B = $422B, not $360B).

While not defending the increase of the federal debt under President Bush, it is aggravating seeing Clinton's record promoted as having generated a surplus. It never happened. There was never a surplus and the cold hard facts support that position. In fact, far from a $360 billion reduction in the national debt in FY1998-FY2000, there was an increase of $281 billion.

Verifying this is as simple as accessing the U.S. Treasury website where the national debt is updated daily and a history of the debt since January 1993 can be obtained. Considering the government's fiscal year ends on the last day of September each year, and considering Clinton's budget proposal in 1993 took effect in October 1993 and concluded September 1994 (FY1994), here's the national debt at the end of each year of Clinton Budgets:

Fiscal
Year YearEnding National Debt Deficit
FY1993 09/30/1993 $4.411488 trillion
FY1994 09/30/1994 $4.692749 trillion $281.26 billion
FY1995 09/29/1995 $4.973982 trillion $281.23 billion
FY1996 09/30/1996 $5.224810 trillion $250.83 billion
FY1997 09/30/1997 $5.413146 trillion $188.34 billion
FY1998 09/30/1998 $5.526193 trillion $113.05 billion
FY1999 09/30/1999 $5.656270 trillion $130.08 billion
FY2000 09/29/2000 $5.674178 trillion $17.91 billion
FY2001 09/28/2001 $5.807463 trillion $133.29 billion

As can clearly be seen, in no year did the national debt go down, nor did Clinton leave President Bush with a budget surplus that Bush subsequently turned into a deficit. Yes, the budget was almost balanced in FY2000 (ending in September 2000 with a deficit of "only" $17.9 billion), but it never reached zero--let alone a positive number. And Clinton's last budget proposal for FY2001, which ended in September 2001, generated a $133.29 billion deficit. The growing deficits started in the year of the last Clinton budget, not in the first year of the Bush administration.

Keep in mind that President Bush took office in January 2001 and his first budget took effect October 1, 2001 for the year ending September 30, 2002 (FY2002). So the $133.29 billion deficit in the year ending September 2001 was Clinton's. Granted, Bush supported a tax refund where taxpayers received checks in 2001. However, the total amount refunded to taxpayers was $38 billion . So even if we assume that $38 billion of the FY2001 deficit was due to Bush's tax refunds which were not part of Clinton's last budget, that still means that Clinton's last budget produced a deficit of 133.29 - 38 = $95.29 billion.

Clinton clearly did not achieve a surplus and he didn't leave President Bush with a surplus.

So why do they said he had a surplus?

As is usually the case in claims such as this, it has to do with Washington doublespeak and political smoke and mirrors.

Understanding what happened requires understanding two concepts of what makes up the national debt. The national debt is made up of public debt and intergovernmental holdings. The public debt is debt held by the public, normally including things such as treasury bills, savings bonds, and other instruments the public can purchase from the government. Intergovernmental holdings, on the other hand, is when the government borrows money from itself--mostly borrowing money from social security.

Looking at the makeup of the national debt and the claimed surpluses for the last 4 Clinton fiscal years, we have the following table:

Fiscal
Year End
Date Claimed
Surplus Public
Debt Inter-gov
Holdings Total National
Debt
FY1997 09/30/1997 $3.789667T $1.623478T $5.413146T
FY1998 09/30/1998 $69.2B $3.733864T $55.8B $1.792328T $168.9B $5.526193T $113B
FY1999 09/30/1999 $122.7B $3.636104T $97.8B $2.020166T $227.8B $5.656270T $130.1B
FY2000 09/29/2000 $230.0B $3.405303T $230.8B $2.268874T $248.7B $5.674178T $17.9B
FY2001 09/28/2001 $3.339310T $66.0B $2.468153T $199.3B $5.807463T $133.3B

Notice that while the public debt went down in each of those four years, the intergovernmental holdings went up each year by a far greater amount--and, in turn, the total national debt (which is public debt + intergovernmental holdings) went up. Therein lies the lie.

When Clinton (and others) said that he had paid down the national debt, that was patently false--as can be seen, the national debt went up every single year. What Clinton did do was pay down the public debt--notice that the claimed surplus is relatively close to the decrease in the public debt for those years. But he paid down the public debt by borrowing far more money in the form of intergovernmental holdings.

Interestingly, this most likely was not even a conscious decision by Clinton. The Social Security Administration is legally required to take all its surpluses and buy U.S. Government securities, and the U.S. Government readily sells those securities--which automatically and immediately becomes intergovernmental holdings. The economy was doing well due to the dot-com bubble and people were earning a lot of money and paying a lot into Social Security. Since Social Security had more money coming in than it had to pay in benefits to retired persons, all that extra money was immediately used to buy U.S. Government securities. The government was still running deficits, but since there was so much money coming from excess Social Security contributions there was no need to borrow more money directly from the public. As such, the public debt went down while intergovernmental holdings continued to skyrocket.

The net effect was that the national debt most definitely did not get paid down because we did not have a surplus. The government just covered its deficit by borrowing money from Social Security rather than the public .

An overall "downsizing" of government and a virtual end to the arms race have contributed to the surplus, but the vast majority is coming from excess Social Security taxes being paid by the workforce in an attempt to keep Social Security benefit checks coming once the "baby-boomers" start to retire.
Of the $142 billion surplus projected by the end of 2000, $137 billion will come from excess Social Security taxes.
When these unified budget numbers are separated into Social Security and non-Social Security components, however, it becomes evident that all of the projected surplus throughout this period is attributable to Social Security. The remainder of the budget will remain in deficit throughout the next decade.

Are intergovernmental holdings really debt?

Absolutely! The intergovernmental debt is every bit as real as the public debt. It's not "a wash" simply because you owe the government owes the money to "itself."

As I explained in a previous article, Social Security is legally required to use all its surpluses to buy U.S. Government securities. From Social Security's standpoint, it has a multi-trillion dollar reserve in the form of U.S. Government securities. When the Social Security system starts to falter due to insufficient contributions to pay for all the benefits of retiring baby-boomers, probably around 2017, it will start cashing those securities and will expect the U.S. Government to pay it back, with interest. The problem is, the government doesn't have the money. The money has already been spent--in part, effectively, to pay down the public debt under Clinton.

The Federal Government cannot just wave a magic wand and somehow "write off" the intergovernmental debt. Essentially, citizens invested money in Social Security and Social Security invested that money in the Federal Government. Now Social Security effectively owes you money (in the form of future retirement benefits) and won't be able to pay you that money if the Federal Government just cancels the intergovernmental debt. The only way the Federal Government can "write off" intergovernmental debt is if it simultaneously eliminates the Social Security system. That might very well be a good idea, but it isn't likely. And Social Security will go bankrupt in about 2017 if the Federal Government doesn't honor those intergovernmental holdings as real debt.

In short, if the government doesn't pay back intergovernmental holdings, other government agencies (like Social Security) will fail. Since allowing Social Security to fail is not a politically viable option, the debt represented by intergovernmental holdings is just as real as the public debt. It can't just be eliminated by some fancy accounting trick or political maneuvering. If it were possible, believe me, politicians would have done it already and taken credit for reducing the national debt by trillions of dollars.

Does a Budget Surplus Automatically Pay Down The Debt?

The concept of a "budget surplus" or a "balanced budget" is of very tenuous importance. A budget is simply a plan on how to spend money which normally also factors in expected income. Anyone can present a "balanced budget" or have a "budget surplus" if they use inflated estimates of income or deflated estimates of expenses. In the end, a budget is nothing more than a plan. Reality is a completely different matter.

As a simple example, if I start 2008 with a job that pays $50,000/year, I can plan a budget that takes into account the $50,000 I expect to make and divides that up amongst all the expenses I expect to make over the course of the year. If my expected expenses are less than my expected earnings, I have a budget surplus. If, however, over the course of the year I lose my job and get a new job that only pays $40,000/year while at the same time it just so happens I have a variable-rate mortgage that adjusts and increases my mortgage payment, by the end of year the reality may very well be that my expenses exceeded my income. I had a budget surplus but reality had different plans and I ended up further in debt.

A balanced budget or a budget surplus is a great thing, but it's only relevant if the budget surplus turns into a real surplus at the end of the fiscal year. In Clinton's case, it never did.

The reality of the national debt

The only debt that matters is the total national debt. And the national debt went up every single year under Clinton. Had Clinton really had a surplus the national debt would have gone down. It didn't go down precisely because Clinton had a deficit every single year. The U.S. Treasury's historical record of
the national debt verifies this.

===============
Edit History
Nov. 13, 2007 - Added material to "Are intergovernmental holdings really debt?" section and added "Does a Budget Surplus Automatically Pay Down The Debt?" section.
Nov. 27, 2007 - Added three embedded quotes/citations that further support that the surplus really came from Social Security.
Jan. 13, 2008 - Added a sentence to the first paragraph on the section about intergovernmental holdings.

http://www.letxa.com/articles/16
 

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http://www.taxfoundation.org/publications/show/151.html

Taxes under Clinton 1999

Single making 30K - tax $8,400

Single making 50K - tax $14,000

Single making 75K - tax $23,250

Married making 60K - tax $16,800

Married making 75K - tax $21,000

Married making 125K - tax $38,750

Taxes under Bush 2008

Single making 30K - tax $4,500

Single making 50K - tax $12,500

Single making 75K - tax $18,750

Married making 60K- tax $9,000

Married making 75K - tax $18,750

Married making 125K - tax $31,250
 

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lol You should know better than try to force feed a bunch of facts to a liberal. They gag on facts. Give em something that feels good or strokes their vacuous egos.
I suspect it might not be too hard to create a surplus if you jack the taxes up enough. However, the piper Will show up in time and guess what, the media will have to find some diversion to the recession induced.
 

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Whammo,

If you are like most Americans you are at negative on the balance sheet on your home and car. How is that working for you?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Actually I have no car or house payments. I beleive in fiscal responsibility, just like the Republicasn used to.

Remember when the Rs told us deficits were such a huge bugaboo we needed to amend our constitution to prohibit them? What has changed?
 

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Yah sure.

What has happened in the past with def spending in the US? Usually follwed by a boom not doom. But I will play,what sould we cut? Since 75% of the budget is entitlement we might as well start there. Who draws the short straw?
 

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It cracks me up every time I read “The fact is�. When I read those words I know I am in for another tall tale.

Does anyone want to look at the debt run up during wartime? I see all the wars after the Civil War and WW1 and then WWII, Korea, Veit Nam all being years the debt was run up. Anyone want to see which party was in charge for most of those?

Guys, if you are going to argue about who spends the most then at least talk apples and apples not apples and oranges. I see the Demo’s party holds more of those war years and the debt that creates. I think it is just so darn funny that you Left’s think it is the Repub.’s that know how to spend money during a war.

And I really laugh these last few years when the Demo’s control the House and the Senate and still try to blame bush. All the President does is recommend a budget, but it is the Demo’s controlled Congress that actually is spending all that money. Bush does not stand there with a gun to their head, they spend money like water and then blame him for it.
clap: :lol: clap:eeing Cheez and Hook again.

There were several others that I met there too but their names escape me at the moment, sorry guys. That’s the problem with getting older. But I will always remember what a fun day it was and before the day was over there were two limits in the back of my truck even if none of the fish were real big.ted daily and a history of the debt since January 1993 can be obtained. Considering the government's fiscal year ends on the last day of September each year, and considering Clinton's budget proposal in 1993 took effect in October 1993 and concluded September 1994 (FY1994), here's the national debt at the end of each year of Clinton Budgets:


Fiscal
Year YearEnding National Debt Deficit
FY1993 09/30/1993 $4.411488 trillion
FY1994 09/30/1994 $4.692749 trillion $281.26 billion
FY1995 09/29/1995 $4.973982 trillion $281.23 billion
FY1996 09/30/1996 $5.224810 trillion $250.83 billion
FY1997 09/30/1997 $5.413146 trillion $188.34 billion
FY1998 09/30/1998 $5.526193 trillion $113.05 billion
FY1999 09/30/1999 $5.656270 trillion $130.08 billion
FY2000 09/29/2000 $5.674178 trillion $17.91 billion
FY2001 09/28/2001 $5.807463 trillion $133.29 billion



As can clearly be seen, in no year did the national debt go down, nor did Clinton leave President Bush with a budget surplus that Bush s
 

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I think you might need a little refresher course on the workings of the Legislative and Executive branches of government there Major my friend.

First correction: The very SLIM Democratic majority in both houses of Congress has only been in place for ONE year now.
The Republican majority... which was MUCH larger than the current Democratic one was in place when Bush took office in January 2001.

Almost ALL of the deficit spending had taken place during that first 6 years.

The president DOES have the final say in spending... unless there are veto-overriding super majorities in BOTH houses of Congress... which there haven't been in a LONG time.
 

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Webo said:
Blah, blah, blah.
I see you don’t care to talk about who was doing the spending in almost all of the wars we have been in. For that matter, do you care to discuss which party has had us fighting most wars?
 

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OK.

The reason I didn't address wartime spending deficits is because THIS "war" (occupation) in Iraq was completely pre-emptive, prosecuted by CHOICE and began AFTER major tax cuts were given to the top 1% income earners and major corporations.

Democrats WERE in power at the advent of WWII, the Korean and Vietnam wars.

Since WWII was the LAST war that actually had ANYTHING to do with us "fighting for our freedoms"... It could be argued that it was indeed a necessity and a noble venture. Roosevelt didn't give any huge tax breaks to the rich before we fought it though? wink:

As you Republicans LOVE to fondly remember... communism and it's spread were the greatest threats to democracy and our position as a world superpower post WWII.

So... it could ALSO be argued that attempting to stop it in BOTH the Korean and Vietnam wars was necessary... and was widely supported by conservatives.

So... what IS your whole point there Major? wink:
 

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When it comes to our government, spending, and political parties, these words never ring more true:

Figures don't lie, liars figure.

I you can defend the Republican spending (especially outside of the war) of the past seven years, you are blind to reality. The Republicans have made the Democrats look like conservatives. This chart says it all. During Clinton's years the Republicans were so busy fighting with Clinton that the growth of spending actually slowed. Look at how the spending zoomed once Bush came into office.... And NO!!! The war on terror doesn't account for all of this!
 

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"Figures don't lie, liars figure."
Take a peek a the federal budget SS and tell the class where the majority of the increase spending was located within the budget. Then tell the class further who pushed for a signed off on those mandatory increases? if you would like a hint the party starts with a "D" and the president that signed off ont he tab started with a "C" .
 

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Exactly WHEN did Newt Gingrich become a Democrat there king?

Republicans held the majorities in BOTH houses of Congress from 1994 to the end of Clinton's presidency.

So... tell the class again how spending increases were Democrat's fault during that time? clown:
 

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217 dems voted in favor 41 voted no
175 repubs voted no.

The senate was 50 /50 with Gore casting the deciding vote.

the president Was WJC.

Now I realize you were probaly stoned or hopped up on some onther drug back then Webo but thatis no excuse. clown:
 

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Theking said:
217 dems voted in favor 41 voted no
175 repubs voted no.

The senate was 50 /50 with Gore casting the deciding vote.

the president Was WJC.

Now I realize you were probaly stoned or hopped up on some onther drug back then Webo but thatis no excuse. clown:
So you're trying to blame Clinton and the Democrats from 8 years ago for the out of control spending that Bush and the Republicans have presided over?

So even though they've been in control of the Presidency and the congress, the Republicans haven't been able to do anything about the out of control spending.......it's still Clinton's fault..... That's what you're sticking too? :roll: :roll: :roll:

Those poor Republicans' hands have been tied by Clinton... Yah, right!
 

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It would help if you understood how the budget works SS. As an example did GW start social security? When were the mandatory increases that take effect in 2000,2001,2002,2003,2004,2005,2006,2007,2008 legislated? What is the difference between mandatory and dicretionay spending and what % of spending do they encompass re the budget SS?

I will admit that the repubs spent like a bunch of saliors on shore leave but to lay it all off on them is partisan and assinine.

Look at the budget and tell me where would you like to cut? and then tell me where you think you could cut and still get elected?
Reality is a bit more complex than your graph and pronouncements
 

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Not only that SS... I'd like to see ACTUAL evidence of this supposed vote in the House.

For king's numbers to add up it would have meant that 433 of the 435 TOTAL members were there to vote that day.

Only 2 members either abstained, voted present or were not physically there. that is a VERY rare occurrence.

It could ONLY have happened in the 103rd Congress between mid '93 and early '95.

Let's see it king.

I will admit that the repubs spent like a bunch of saliors on shore leave but to lay it all off on them is partisan and assinine.
No Sh!t Sherlock! But guess what...

The ONLY ones blaming ONE party for anything are YOU and the hard-core right wingers. clown: :lol:
 
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