10 who led us to the fiscal cliff

They fed our greed and guilt and told us we could have all the spending and tax cuts, too. While practically all of us had a role in this mess, these 10 stand out.

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Dec 6, 2012 12:20PM
The mantra of spending cuts only being possible in the area of entitlements AND NATIONAL DEFENSE is beyond stupid. This one-track thinking completely ignores the need to totally eliminate several sprawling, out-of-contral federal agencies that are not only  blowing HUGE amounts of money but are having a tremendous negative effect  on the economy.  These are relatively recently created agencies that are not doing the very things they were chartered to accomplish and at the same time are killing us economically.  I'll be interested in listening to talk about entitlements (not including Social Security which is NOT an entitlement) only when Obama does what he promised 4 years ago ... go through the Federal budget line by line and eliminate all programs and agencies that are not doing what they're supposted to be doing or are so innefecient that they're not worth their cost.  The hard truth is these need to be eliminated and the the people forced to find meaningful work in the private sector, not just shuttled into another cushy federal job.  That's what reduction means.  Yet, here we are, 4 years later and NOT ONE SINGLE AGENCY OR PROGRAM HAS BEEN SCUTTLED ... NOT ONE!!!  When the government is sized properly and doing only those things it's supposed to be doing, much of the economy will begin to heal itself, the need for entitlements will begin to diminish.  At that point  the pressure to cut back those programs that ARE actually working will reduce as well and much of this will become mute.  We can't raise taxes enough to make a dent in the problem and failure to get a grip on spending issues will destroy us, no matter how much "cutting" is done.  But we have to focus on the right issues. 
Dec 6, 2012 12:09PM
The big 3 that are pushing this country off the cliff are the 236 years, outdated old doctrine and basic fundamentals for:
1) Military
2) Law Enforcement
Republicans big three pushing this country off the cliff.
1) Grandma & Grandpa.
2) Veterans.
3) Students.
Dec 6, 2012 12:05PM
Placing blame of these 10 individuals may make you feel better, but the bottom line is that this doesn't solve any of our problems.  We need to as a nation stop blaming everyone and put aside our differences and start to work together to find a solution.  Will it involve tax increases - probably but coupled with this has to be a significant reform of all entitlement programs as well as the elimination of government waste.  Its really that simple.
Dec 6, 2012 12:05PM

 One thing you left out MSN is no one has been prosecuted for any of this and never will because its perfectly legal to bankrupt our nation in this manner and always has been. All the culprits of this over the last 30 years have all retired and lived in elegance as the middle-class serfs provide the votes and the money via taxes,fees,401ks etc to enable them all with the thought of free cell phones,government pensions,pork barrel bailouts and the like.

Dec 6, 2012 11:59AM
Strong military? What you really mean is a military that requires so much money, technology, advanced equipment and weaponry but not enough to match the capability of the ill equipped Talibans.

The big 3 that are pushing this country off the cliff are the 236 years, outdated old doctrine and basic fundamentals for:
1) Military
2) Law Enforcement
3) Intelligence

This is the the reason why we have September 11, 2001
This is the reason why we have the shootings in Colorado and Arizona
This is the reason why 77 people died in Norway in the hands of the lone gunman
this is the reason why at 2.4 million prison population of the U.S is the highest in the world

The basic fundamentals has remained the same the last 236 years, a re-active system. By changing this outdated system to pro-active, we would not have to spend $88 billion dollars in Afghanistan and cut the defense spending in the US by $54 billion dollars (that's tremendous amount of jobs lost).
We would not have to go through anti-gun and pro-gun debate every time a tragic shooting occurs simply because a pro-active system means "total crime prevention capability".

This is the answer to the FBI's dilemma: April 9, 2012 NY Times Journal "FBI says violent crime is down but the killing of police officers is rising and they do not know why.

Dec 6, 2012 11:57AM
My god ... how can this article totally ignore the pivotal role of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who has stonewalled EVERY attempt, Democrat and Republican, to get a budget deal passed in the Senate.  This idiot, who must be a long-lost twin of Nancy Pelosi ( the congressional idiot-in-Chief) has for years been blocking common sense budget measures on the altar of nasty partisan politics by refusing to allow simple up or down votes.  It's stunning to watch one selfish, biased man completely squelch the entire concept of governance by a representative  republic, by simply refusing to allow the other 99 members of the US Senate to review, debate and vote on measures in a timely manner ... including bills lawfuly passed and sent to the Senate from the House of Representatives.  This jerk is an embarrassment to all of us who live in Nevada .... except of course the SEIU and other union thugs who backed him and intimidated their membership to support  his reelection.  Gag me!!!!
Dec 6, 2012 11:49AM
Rex Nutting is an idiot to belittle deficits and he is an idiot to make it all sound so pat. And Obama has spent way more than Bush with not a thing to show for it.
Dec 6, 2012 11:47AM

What in the world would some 'tabloid' journalist know about deficits, spending and so forth?  Do these so called 'journalists' think that we are all idiots??  It doesn't matter who you are; which party that you vote with; how you describe your fiscal character.......Most of us know that our biggest culprit throughout this entire fiscal crisis is the person in the mirror.....especially if you were one of the 'morons' who did not vote.  (doesn't matter what party you belong to)


Our problem is not and has not been revenue as the misguided Mr. Nutting continually refers to......It is the 'spending' stupid.


Better start looking at your 'hole card' folks.

Dec 6, 2012 11:42AM
Dec 6, 2012 11:36AM
What a piece of over simplification and poor journalism. The Laffer curve does not say that spending can continue to rise unchecked. George Bush had budget deficeit of less than $200 billion in his last year in office. Our problem has been and continues to be spending. No amount of tax increase will resolve that issue, take a close look at California and Europe.
Dec 6, 2012 11:31AM

Judging from the comments on this article, no matter how truthful and factual an article can be there still are idiots out there that just don't want to believe that the Bush administration and the screwed up GOP of today has put the country in the state we are in today. 


You people who still blame President Obama can continue to be brain washed by Fox News and other bigots all you want but you can not rewrite history. Way too many people with half a brain can see and understand who really created this mess and they know why there are few of you out there with your head in the sand who have completely loss their ability to think rationally and factually. 


Sad !!! Sad!!

Dec 6, 2012 11:25AM
The only place that this article would gain support would be th academic world where reality
Dec 6, 2012 11:24AM

Oh wait ?!? 15 more day's until the end of the Mayan Calendar. Did the mayans predict the fiscal cliff ? Or will a CME (coronal mass ejection) hit us ? Tsunami ? Drought ? ( That one already happened here).


OR>>> It's time for everyone to examine their OWN life & circumstances and make changes accordingly so that we can sustain ourselves into this new era. We already know the results of past civilizations who did not adapt & change.


Dec 6, 2012 11:12AM
The other big problem is that everyone is passing the blame, the burden of figuring out a solution, and the bill to the younger generations.
Dec 6, 2012 11:11AM

By the look of things, our POTUS & congress will not have any substantial solutions to avoid the 'fiscal cliff'. So........

Some will get the tax increases they wanted, some will get the spending cuts they wanted. So go ahead congress & do nothing. UE will go from 99 weeks back to 26 - YEA! - time to get a job folks!


Some Senators might have to do some of their own paper work with no Administrative staff - And you think things work slowly now ? How about they clean their own facilities? That would truly make them public 'servants'.


And for my taxes? They'll be paid, as they are every year, whatever they are. And just about the time they're due & paid , I'll be going on  another fishing trip to the Islands - YAH MON !!


Dec 6, 2012 11:07AM
Why wasn't Franklin Delano mentioned?  He is the one who led the "Greatest Generation" down the road never to return.  Since when is it the government's responsibility to provide entitlements to those who do not provide for themselves?  Ugh!! The general lack of wisdom and understanding.
Dec 6, 2012 11:03AM
"Right now, the middle class gets to keep LESS of its wealth because most of the very wealthy pay a lower effective rate."

It's probably time to put your big-boy britches on and stop blaming the wealthy for all your problems.  If you are taxed too much, it's the fault of the gov, not the wealthy.  On the one hand, you gripe about having less wealth.  And on the other hand, you consistently advocate for more gov spending.   You can't have it both ways.  And when you try and blame the rich, who happen to already pay the vast majority of the taxes, your argument completely collapses.  Guess what, only the gov has the power to confiscate your wealth, everything else you spend is voluntary.  If you aren't happy with your wealth being confiscated, take it up with the people who are actually confiscating it.
Dec 6, 2012 11:02AM
How could everyone keep thinking this is a fiscal cliff? They are the same numbers from the GOOD OLD CLINTON DAYS!!! What the Hell! LOL
Dec 6, 2012 11:01AM
Most of them are just self serving bastards who do not represent the American people.
Dec 6, 2012 10:59AM
This article is the biggest pile of dog sh!t to ever appear on MSN money.    Please take off your liberal democrat cheerleading outfit, put down your tax more pom poms, and take a dose of reality that you can't tax your way to prosperity when you're spending 1.5 trillion more than you take in every year.
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