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You've undoubtedly heard about the "fiscal cliff" recently - those budget cuts and tax increases that will cause the world to end if they are allowed to be enacted.
Of course, as with anything coming out of Washington, D.C. these days, it's a bunch of hooey. The tax increases won't cause the world to end and the budget cuts are mere trims - $110 billion per year evenly split between defense and non-defense spending - the overall budget is somewhere in the $3 trillion range. You'll hear about the "ten year" $500 billion cuts to defense...really? Over ten years? That's nothing. Same with the non-defense side.
The big hoax is that we are a nation of laws and as such this "law" can be repealed and/or worked around. It's not a Constitutional amendment - it's a law.
Then, why all the nail-biting, hand wringing going on? Politics, pure and simple. The Democrats want to scare the country (and the Republican party) into tax increases on "the rich"...as though that will solve the problem - it won't and they know it. They merely want to demonize successful people in order to pump themselves up with the underclass, who are good for voting Democrat. All of these social programs, from Social Security to Medicare, are NOT intended to solve any particular problem (or they wouldn't be insolvent) BUT to cement the Democratic party's power. The hope is that every time you cash your Social Security check, you'll pull the Democrat lever in the voting booth.
I hope the Republicans hold their ground and resist tax changes unless there are strong entitlement overhauls. These programs can't go on like this without substantial change. Of course, the Democrats are resisting any change to social programs and the country believes that Republicans ("as usual") are stonewalling simply not to raise taxes on the rich when the real reason is that tax increases, in the past, have ALWAYS resulted in MORE spending and NEVER any cuts. Obama hasn't even proposed any serious cuts or reforms, which shows you how this is all politics.
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