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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403Comments
Dec 6, 2012 8:39AM
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Barney FranK!!!!!!!!!!!! The man who said mortgage money for every poor quality credit risk whether or not they have ever paid a bill on time. It isn't about your ability to repay it is about fairness, and fairness means we lend to everyone. Fairness was the road to hell. This article is written by a socialist.
Dec 6, 2012 8:19AM
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What do you mean BACK into recession;  we've been hurting for all these years with escalating food costs (including smaller packaging for same prices), energy costs, and stagnant incomes.  The runaway BORROWING and SPENDING must stop.  With annual income of $41 thousand, our family has all agreed not to buy any gifts this year.  Instead we will save what we can in preparation for the inflation that is sure to come with the Federal Reserve Bank's QE3 and 4.  If ALL the wealth from "the rich" were confiscated it still would not solve the runaway spending that is under way.  President Obama needs to step up to the level that is required of his position and SOLVE the SPENDING PROBLEM now.  Enough of this "my way or the highway" class warfare and politics of envy.
Dec 6, 2012 8:17AM
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This is a bit far off in a lot of areas.  Laffer is not incorrect - the Bush tax cuts increased revenues.  The problem is that while revenues increased, so did spending.  While the deficits were not as large as previously, they still existed.  One of the ways Clinton balanced the budget is reducing the # of federally funded residencies for doctors.  They estimated we would need LESS doctors in the future.  That really worked out Billy.
Dec 6, 2012 7:57AM
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our elected act like children in the sand box......all for them selves and what they can get in return...if they were not millionaires when they were elected, they are now.   The middle class took CUTS, CUTS.  Well, how many elected took a cut in pay or  benefits.    They get to vote themselves a raise.......and they get a retirement from us no matter if they are in 1 month or the rest of their lives....They have it better than the ones that voted them in....
Dec 6, 2012 7:38AM
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I read a lot.  I am 64 and have always read a lot.  I vote middle of the road.

This article is the biggest piece of crap I have EVER read.

Dec 6, 2012 4:27AM
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There's simply no mystery as to what happened, we all saw it. After 4 straight balanced budgets and a $237 billion dollar surplus, the Republicans took over power, they doubled spending increases from 3.5% per year to 7.7% and cut revenues from about 20% of GDP to 14%, turning the surplus into a $1.3 trillion dollar deficit in 2009, a $1.537 trillion dollar annual spending increase. Obama has reduced our deficit from over $1.3 trillion down to about $900 billion, a $400 billion dollar reduction for 2013. If Republicans who caused this mess would get out of the way we could fix it, but the debt mongers wont budge till America votes them out.
Dec 6, 2012 2:22AM
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This all happen when old senile people are in the most important positions, plus add all the stupid voters who agreed with them and America is falling down, the most incredible is that everybody is surprised by the result!! Ho!...how have we come to this? It's not finish, that socialist is going to fire the final and fatal shot to our dear America. Just watch him...
Dec 6, 2012 2:14AM
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That was the worst piece of Journalism I have ever read.  Under Obama the deficit rose almost 50% the past four years. The Democrats in Senate and Congress have been racking up the spending the past 30 years. 
Dec 6, 2012 1:38AM
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WHAT A LOAD OF CRAP!  Your left-wing bias sticks out all over!  Shame on you for wasting time pointing your finger!
Dec 6, 2012 1:23AM
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Wake up America!

Perhaps the error today is not to purge the Speaker of the House, Boehner.

He keeps fighting for the rich, and destroying the working class! We Democrats in consolidation with million of conscientious Republicans, and Independents will always remember you Boehner, as an indolent persistent blocker of progress for our country. Democrats will work hard in the future elections to kick you out of the House of Representatives as Speaker, together with Cantor, Ryan and the ruffian of the Senate McConnell. I know we will pursue this task with all our hearts. The Democratic Party prime future agenda is remembering to consolidate all efforts to get all of you in future elections out of a job, just because of your malice, and abuse, you will go in history as the racketeers in the Senate, and the House! You do not deserve these jobs as an American! The four of have you, and the Tea Party members now propelled to belligerent stardom by Sara Palin, have done so much to damaged the American people progress, that it’s unforgettable; you destroyed the USA credit ratings, provoked the credit collapsed during the Budget Ceiling discussions with your persistent indolent opposition against our president Mr. Obama, and the concurrence insane approval of the Tea Party. This fight for the Debt ceiling was an unnecessary legislation, all invented by you Republicans just to choke any Mr. Obama’s economical progress! The results on the economy was a devastating ricochet against the middle class, sequestering the economic health of our country, stopping all opportunities for job creations because your malignant disease of betrayal of the president Mr. Obama, and the people of America. You infected the whole Senate, and the House of House of Representatives ability not to process Jobs Bills, and to do nothing for months, but to take long month of care free vacations while the America people starved to death! We Democrats do not trust you ever, and know you are ready to try to give us citizens another violent poison if we do not keep a check on all of your deceptions, and indecent activities in the present Cliff negotiations with our president Mr. Obama!

Dec 6, 2012 1:02AM
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Could not DISAGREE more strongly with Nutting.  He lives up to his last name.  His theory that tax cuts bear the lion's share of the burden for our budget deficit would be laughable if it wasn't so serious.  Tacitly, he is therefore claiming that the problem isn't an insane appetite for spending, it is that we are not taxed enough.  This logic is analogous to the proverbial blond that states, "I can't be overdrawn, I still have checks in my checkbook" 
Dec 6, 2012 12:58AM
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Wow, nice non-partisan article.  Did the writer even take an economics class?  W was the single greatest reason for this problem, huh?  Check those numbers, Obama's spending makes W look frugal and the two "unfunded wars" are over and he's still outspending W.  Clinton?  Budget surplus, yes, but the deficit still increased under Clinton.  Why?  Because like any true liberal, when you get two cents in your hand, you spend a dollar.  Anyone who thinks raising taxes will solve this problem can't add.  And when all those millionaires and billionaires that Obama vilifies move to other countries (notice we slipped to the 16th best place to live), who will he tax then?  That's right, no one.  Because there will be no one left except the folks collecting government assistance. 
Dec 6, 2012 12:47AM
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The author of this piece is simply full of ****!
Dec 6, 2012 12:38AM
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Add Rex Nutting to the list that led to the "Cliff". The so called press  have replaced lawyers as the biggest scumbag liars. They hide the truth while the sheep are being led to slaughter. Nice fluff piece Rexy.
Dec 6, 2012 12:34AM
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I can make this article alot simpler for everyone. Who's the number one culprit for the problems were in? OURSELVES! We voted for these people and continue to vote these numbskulls into power. Its time we start doing a nationwide vote on major issues and then see where the country goes instead of thinking those we vote for have our best interest in mind. Don't foget its WE THE PEOPLE. And its time we start taking a little responsibilty for our actions and fix the problems instead of letting others make it worse. 

 

Dec 6, 2012 12:27AM
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You did not any anything about spending, it went from 20% GDP in 2008 to 25% GDP in 2009, who's fault was that?
Dec 6, 2012 12:09AM
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Our financial problems as a country are much deeper than just ten people.

 

First off, our system of taxation is a joke.  Our founding fathers did not want people to pay direct taxes (i.e. taxation on income and property).  They instead wanted indirect taxation (i.e. taxation based upon transactions such as a sales tax, excise taxes on goods that were not desirable such as whiskey, and tariffs.

 

As a country we have strayed woefully away from that basic system of taxation where now we actually get incentives to get into debt (home mortgage interest deduction) while we are penalized for savings (capital gains taxes on investment earnings). 

 

The system is all backwards and the incentives in place are exactly opposite of where they need to be to accomplish what needs to be accomplished.

 

Social security which takes around 7% out of most workers pay is an entitlement program from the Roosevelt days that is poorly designed and it has been abused through raids on its suplus to where  it is now broke along with the rest of the government.

 

All these facts coupled with the most anti-business president ever and it is no wonder we are in the mess that we currently find ourselves in.

Dec 5, 2012 11:19PM
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You have to be kidding regarding this article.Who really wrote this David Axlerod. How stupid does the media really think the American public is to digest this trash.

Dec 5, 2012 11:03PM
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THE ENTITLMENT GREAT SOCEITY STARTED WITH ROOSEVELT AND JOHNSON - A NOT MY FAULT SOCEITY SPRINKLED WITH WHATS IN FOR ME AND A DEMOCRACTIC PROGESSIVE AGENDA THAT ALL THINGS COME FROM GOVERNMENT.

 

WE ARE HEADED FOR THE CLIFF - WHEN A SOCEITY CAN VOTE FOR THEIR ENTITILEMENTS AND SUBSIDIZE - WHY THE HELL SHOULD WE WORK!!!!!!!!!

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