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Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Posted by alexr (My Page) on
Wed, Nov 7, 12 at 23:32

I don't completely understand this, but I think the ball is in Prez. Obama's court. I mean I think he could make the Republican house members sweat and get a good deal.

So are they going to delay it or work it out? And what's so bad about taking away the Bush tax cuts anyway? Or is it the Defense budget cuts that would hurt jobs in California- causing a new recession in San Diego?

Inquiring minds want to know. Really. I get this was a special poison pill that allowed the debt limit to get raised. And that the Republicans refused to play ball and allow either the Bush tax cuts to go away or any tax on the rich in the meantime. And Obama said it's not going to happen, that some compromise or delay will take place....

But what if it did happen? What's so bad about lowering Federal discretionary spending 10% and putting taxes back where they were? I'm not in love with making more bombs...am I being naive??? Please tell me your thoughts and share your knowledge..


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

alexr, I am not sure about the rules and terms of outdoor games but I will venture to say "Ball in Play!"


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Methinks they will walk right up to it but won't stumble over it...


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

I think they fear that the reduction in spending might cause another recession.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Sequestration is a very big deal in terms of it's potential impact on the economy as well as the fact the cuts are mandatory and totally indiscriminate. 8-10 % cuts to all domestic and defense programmes, no exceptions except for medicare and SS . That is no way to run a country. Cuts are needed but they also need to be made wisely and in the right places or there will be serious economic and social consequences.

The time out on the tax cuts are not part of sequestration , just so happens that they expire Dec 31st at the same time sequestration kicks in. Removing that much money from the economy, at the same time as the cuts, will result in almost certain recession, boarding on depression.

It is the job of Congress to deal with budgets in a sane and rational way not wholesale cuts. president Obama has got to lead on this one. He needs to help broker a deal that involves BOTH revenues increases, without raising taxes on the middle class, coupled with cuts that help reduce the debt without throwing the country into total chaos. No time to play the bully but he must be firm and he needs to ensure a balanced approach.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

They have been wraned by the world that it will cause another Recession!

Here is a link that might be useful: Christine


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

I don't know that it will cause a recession that will be felt too much. Remember that the last recession had quite a kick because the housing market was in turmoil at the same time.

Canada went through it's own round of tax hikes and budgetary cuts years ago and yes, while some felt the cuts, it was a necessary measure that ultimately left us in much better financial shape. Chase is speaking from experience in her post.

Just remember, the longer you leave it, the worse it will be.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

I read the article in the link back in October. It was and still is fascinating. Obviously, it was written before the election, so it talks about what might happen in each scenario (Romney winning and Obama winning).

Now that we know the outcome of the election, I read the Obama winning part again. Very interesting.

I do not remember how I came across this article in October. It's very likely it was posted on a thread here. If it was, I don't remember who posted it. But, if you posted it back then, please claim credit. It is a fascinating look at what Obama might/could do about that fiscal cliff.

Here is a link that might be useful: NY Mag Article


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

  • Posted by ohiomom 3rdrockfromthesun (My Page) on
    Sat, Nov 10, 12 at 18:49

The time out on the tax cuts are not part of sequestration , just so happens that they expire Dec 31st at the same time sequestration kicks in. Removing that much money from the economy, at the same time as the cuts, will result in almost certain recession, boarding on depression.

Really waiting for our more learned members to weigh in on this, but it seems to me (and lord knows I can be wrong:) that the republicans "might" have set themselves up with the "sequestration" part of this non-compromise with Obama. In fact I wonder if the democrats knew this would come to pass? .. shrug


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

I'm not quite on board with taxes 'removing the money from the economy'. Given that the gvt turns around and spends it very quickly in the same economy paying salaries, buying fighter jets, and so on.

Point being reinforced that a major hit to the economy comes from reduced gvt spending. If they stop funding new fighter planes from General Dynamics, a lot of people lose their jobs.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

A followup yesterday from the same author in the link.

I agree, ohiomom. Hoping to get some thoughts from some here that know a lot more about this than I do.

I read something several years ago about Obama. It was early in his first term and I was honestly unhappy with some of the things he wasn't doing. I'll never find the article, but the author basically said to be patient. That Obama was playing chess, while the rest of us were playing checkers. I thought that was a bit over the top, but perhaps he was right.

Here is a link that might be useful: Followup


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

  • Posted by ohiomom 3rdrockfromthesun (My Page) on
    Sat, Nov 10, 12 at 19:20

"Obama was playing chess"

.....me thinks a lot of people have made the mistake of underestimating this president, and may have even taken kindness/compassion for weakness.

This may play out as successful as their campaign strategy.

Interesting days ahead...


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

snip" To recap, the basic situation is this. Back when George W. Bush was in office, he wanted to cut taxes. And he wanted to disguise the cost of his tax cuts. So he had his allies on Capitol Hill write the legislation so that the tax cuts would automatically expire at the end of a 10-year window.

That window closed at the end of 2010. But during the 2010 lame-duck session, Republicans were riding high on electoral victory and the Obama administration was concerned that tax hikes would hurt the economy. So they cut a deal to extend the Bush tax cuts two more years into the 2012 lame-duck session. It was a smart idea for everyone concerned. With the economy weak, there really was no case for a short-term tax increase, and this way the presidential election would resolve everything. If Obama lost, his GOP opponent would surely sign a permanent extension of the Bush tax cuts. But if Obama won, then he'd block any extension.

snip

But Republicans didn't create permanent cuts when they had the chance in 2002. Their daring strategy raised the stakes, but they didn't get the cards they need. Game over.

Yet the conservative movement, Boehner, the media, and- most amazingly of all, many leaders in the Democratic Party -are still playing. Boehner delivered a post-election speech calling for tax reform that would put the top marginal income tax rate even lower than it is today. Sen. Chuck Schumer says Democrats will work with the business community to persuade Boehner to change his mind.

The conceit here is the frankly bizarre idea that since Obama wants to extend the Bush tax cuts for the middle class, he needs to engage in some kind of bargaining process. But this is silly. The Senate already passed a plan to extend the middle-class tax cuts. Now the choice before the House of Representatives is whether they want to vote to pass that plan before the new year or after the new year. Grover Norquist, the conservative Solon on taxes, appears to have made a metaphysical ruling that a vote for partial extension (before the new year) is a vote for higher taxes. That's silly, but the dictates of holy writ are often a bit arbitrary. All Republicans need to do is wait until the Bush tax cuts have already expired. At that point, a vote for a tax cut that Obama will sign-i.e., the middle-class tax cuts only-would clearly be a vote to cut taxes rather than raise them.

To take the bargaining process seriously at this point you have to believe that come 2013, House Republicans would actually refuse to cut taxes on the grounds that the president's tax-cut proposal doesn't cut taxes enough. Then they would blame the economic drag and middle-class pain that their own refusal to cut taxes had caused on the Democrats. But that doesn't pass the laugh test as a political argument. It ignores the fact that the GOP quite genuinely wants to see rich people pay lower taxes. And since rich people have lots of income that falls below the top bracket cutoff, they actually benefit massively from the middle-class tax cuts Obama favors.- snip

Here is a link that might be useful: limk


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Interesting thread and bookmarked the links (thanks Jill, Joe, David) for later reading much more carefully.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Speaking conversationally here, you know how many people I meet that don't understand the following- (maybe we should blame the media)-(from David's link above):

"And since rich people have lots of income that falls below the top bracket cutoff, they actually benefit massively from the middle-class tax cuts Obama favors."

I'll be half way through a conversation when it dawns on me that the other side thinks a tax raise is on their entire earnings. And they'll feel sorry for the rich, "Golly, they paid 90% tax in 1960?"

I get a similar sinking feeling when someone says Social Security needs to be cut or the age requirement need to be raised because it's bankrupting us...etc. When actually only a tiny tweak is needed to get through the baby boom. And I do blame the media for some of this hysteria.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

I'll be half way through a conversation when it dawns on me that the other side thinks a tax raise is on their entire earnings.

We've seen the same thing here. People constantly saying that if the tax rate goes up, people will stop earning money. Puhleeeeassse! They make it sound like the more they earn the less they take home. Clearly do not understand how the tax code works.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Clearly, the more one earns, the higher the tax rate, and the more in total taxes are paid.

There will be--trust me--people who INTENTIONALLY will not make as much money as they can--in order to send a message to Washington.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

There will be--trust me--people who INTENTIONALLY will not make as much money as they can--in order to send a message to Washington.

Ah, the people you hang out with are amazing.

They think Washington cares, or what? And if they don't want to exploit a market - make more money - then I imagine someone else will be happy to do so.

Why, it might even be somebody grateful for what the government has done for them - you know, immigrants, student loan recipients, ex-welfare moms, and so on - so happy to be making enough salary/profit now to pay federal income taxes.

Imagine that - giving back to your country, instead of me, mine, me mine.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

There will be--trust me--people who INTENTIONALLY will not make as much money as they can--in order to send a message to Washington.

They may be a few, but I've seen more planning regarding capital expenditures, sales of assets, taking a bonus in a subsequent rather than current year, etc. in light of changes in the tax code than those intentionally reducing personal income for extended periods to spite someone else. No prudent business person that I have ever known what pass up an opportunity to make money. Laying low risks yielding market share, missing investment opportunities, losing professional standing, gaps in resume, etc.

There will be others who will gratefully fill the gap created by the resentful slackers.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

"people who INTENTIONALLY will not make as much money as they can--in order to send a message to Washington."

Right ..... well they better send a letter too because they will be lost in the rounding otherwise.

How ridiculous.....


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

"people who INTENTIONALLY will not make as much money as they can--in order to send a message to Washington."

That is one of the most ridiculous things I have read here.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Ridiculous. And laughable.

Like anyone would say oh, no, I'm not goint to make more money. I'm not going to put myself into that higher bracket. They are only charged the higher rate on the amount over the line where the tax rate goes up. But, of course you, demi, understand that (at least I think you do). I'm at a loss for words to describe how ridiculous that statement is.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

"people who INTENTIONALLY will not make as much money as they can--in order to send a message to Washington.

That is one of the most ridiculous things I have read here."

I have known 1 person who did this and 1 who was considering it. The first was a person living in a Scandinavian country where, when his tax rate hit 65% during the year, he just stopped working because it was no longer profitable for him to work.

I knew another person 2 or 3 years ago who was considering to refuse a raise that would put him just over the threshold and into another tax bracket. I don't know how that turned out.

When/if tax rates get too high they do discourage productivity, as in the first case above. You don't want the talented and productive people sitting on the sidelines because it's too expensive for them to work. In the case of a 65% bracket, yes, that's way too high.

A 20% increase in taxes might be enough to alter behavior if a wage earner and their family are sensitive to swings in tax rates. For example, if the tax rates increase on the middle class, I intend to increase the amount of 401K contributions, and maybe throw a bit more in the tax deductible health savings account. It could actually cause me to pay less in taxes than I did last year, even though my salary is 3% higher.

So tax rates can have consequences, in that they change financial behaviors of people who are sensitive to tax increases. Ever wonder why all those ugly strip malls started springing up in the 50s? Tax shelters.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

lionheart - I cannot speak about your 1st case since I know nothing about tax laws in other countries, nor does it apply here.

For the 2nd case, you do understand that the higher tax rate will only apply to the income above the threshold, right? So, you will still take home more money, not less money. Assuming you understand that, please explain why in the world anyone would refuse a raise that will let them bring home MORE MONEY and instead stay at their current level and bring home LESS MONEY.

I'm sorry, but I find it impossible to believe that anyone in their right mind would do this. It makes absolutely no sense since it is impossible to take home less money.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Think what you wish, what I said is true.

Like Lionheart, I know people that are willing to put their money where their mouths are.

Obama and the Democrats can go ahead and raise taxes on the higher earners, it still won't be anywhere near enough, and there will be numbers of earners will just not contribute to the economy, won't risk the money and who will just let the government not get what it's depending on by not exceeding the limit to put them in the higher tax bracket.

It doesn't sound silly to someone who does not worship money.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

that is why liberals don't get conservatives, liberals worship taking other peoples money from taxes and the power they get from it. just the liberal forget the the 60's since business can do the same thing protester did then.
the doctors in Canada do it. when they reach the limit of money they make reach there cost. they shut for rest season.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

As long as we're dragging out anecdotal evidence, here is mine: I know a business owner who donated $10,000 to the Romney campaign and who is currently searching for ways to increase business income -- as in new customers, updating products, etc.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Nancy, that makes perfect sense if the person wants to grow his business.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Nancy, that makes perfect sense if the person wants to grow his business.

And these people you know would have wanted to grow their business if Romney had won, but since Obama won they don't want to?


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

"There will be--trust me--people who INTENTIONALLY will not make as much money as they can--in order to send a message to Washington."
Yes people will throw temper tantrums & say I won't earn & you can't make me! I won't invest if capital gains taxes are 25%.
That can't be what your saying or is it more I will maximize every loophole possibles so it appears I have no income or I have deferred income.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

people who INTENTIONALLY will not make as much money as they can--in order to send a message to Washington.

Most of us who own businesses are far more interested in making sure that they continue to thrive than in sending messages to anyone. If competitors in my sector want to get carried away with emotionalism and make less money, that's fine with me. Voids to fill mean more customers and more money for me. Taxes a part of doing business, I plan for them and get on with it.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

I won't invest if capital gains taxes are 25%.
That can't be what your saying or is it more I will maximize every loophole possibles so it appears I have no income or I have deferred income.

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No, it means there are people that will not invest if capital gains tax rates are increased too much, or they will control their investments so as not to earn over a certain amount.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Y'all are comparing apples and oranges here. Most of you are talking about your own business earning money; Demi is talking about her money "earning" money.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

they will control their investments so as not to earn over a certain amount.

That makes even less sense than the last statement.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

I won't invest if capital gains taxes are 25%.

Depends on how long you are looking to hold the asset(s). A long-term investment may well extend beyond President Obama's second term in office. Who knows what the rate will be then. The one you're hurting most could be your portfolio.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

I won't invest if capital gains taxes are 25%.

All investments carry risks, so I understand how an investor might decide that the potential net return with a higher tax rate wasn't worth the risk. The earlier comments were about "send[ing] a message to Washington," not a risk/ROI assessment.

Beyond a reasonable cushion of liquidity, I don't have like "lazy money" that isn't working for me, but investment goals and strategies differ.


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Was Reagan a Communist?

What's the figgin' "Death tax" exemption these days? 5 million? I remember just a dozen years ago it was only $675,000 - we used to call it "Inheritance Tax" and before that it was called an "Estate Tax". Maybe if the rich think that the exemption will be lowered to 1 million they'll just decide to die first. Of course the people who inherit it pay 0 (zero) capital gains. anyway....

I don't like comparing various years of tax rates because the tiers are different and so are the deductions, deferments etc.. Marginal versus Effective. It is confusing.

At least some people know that in 1960 the top tax bracket rate was 90% on income. Those were the good years.

Capital gains tax has been higher too- for many years of the 1970's it was 35%- those were good years too...Many of Reagan's years Long Term Capital gains were well over 25% and a few years close to 33%- and that was the result of the Tax Reform Act of 1986- a law championed by Reagan! I guess that makes Reagan a Communist ...(although he did reduce the rate on the higher income tax brackets.)
-----------------------------------------
The link below is from a short article in Mother Jones- there is another link there to a CRS report if you care to wade through it.

Here is a link that might be useful: Charts- How The Rich get Richer


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Capital Gains tax only matters if you are selling so I guess what you really mean is that you will hold on to the investments you have and not sell them regardless of the gains you may make. Sounds like cutting off your nose to spite your face to me.

In preparation for a boost to capital gains are you going to liquidate all your assets now or will you hold them in the hopes the if rates go up they are lowered some day? That could be a bit risky....

There is no way that there will be an income tax hike but even Romney said he would consider revenue increases by the closing of loopholes and increasing revenue streams to those earning over 250K. It's not a position held only by Democrats. Revenue increases would have happened under the Republicans as well...because there is no choice if you are to get yourself out of this mess in a responsible fashion.

Everyone says the deficit is a huge concern to them and it should be. New spending is pretty much a non starter and programm cuts are inevitable.

The cuts and the revenue increases are all aimed at reducing the deficit not additional spending ......isn't that the goal?

Everyone contributed to the financial mess and everyone has an obligation to contribute to the solution. It can't happen another way.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Posted by alexr (My Page) on
Mon, Nov 12, 12 at 1:49

What's the figgin' "Death tax" exemption these days? 5 million? I remember just a dozen years ago it was only $675,000 - we used to call it "Inheritance Tax" and before that it was called an "Estate Tax". Maybe if the rich think that the exemption will be lowered to 1 million they'll just decide to die first. Of course the people who inherit it pay 0 (zero) capital gains. anyway....

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As of January 1, 2013, just weeks away, the exemption reverts back to the 2001 and 2002 rates, which is only one million and a 55% TAX RATE.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Investors will invest no matter what the capital gains rate is and short sellers should be taxed to the max.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

So I guess those older folks with an estate worth much more than $5 million have only a few more weeks to die- maybe at the hands of their relatives! But Congress may yet bail them out,(them being the 'Nobles') we'll just have to wait and see... might be a few unnatural deaths of the rich before New Years...

Oh by the way, what's the 'Gift Tax' exemption now?


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Here's a big talker changing his tune:

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- David Siegel, the CEO who had warned his employees they'd face layoffs if President Obama was re-elected, gave everyone a 5% raise last week instead.

Siegel isn't backing off his gloomy predictions for the economy under Obama's second term. But he said his company, Westgate Resorts, had record profitability this year and he wanted to share the success with employees, most of whom had not gotten a raise the year before.

The CEO said he believes his employees will need higher wages to deal with increased costs he expects everyone will face under Obama. And he's not backing off his prediction that developments like Obamacare and the Dodd-Frank financial regulations will hurt the economy in the years ahead -- and could lead him to make staff cuts eventually.

"I never told anyone if Obama got elected, I was firing anybody. That just got twisted by the media," said Siegel in a phone interview on Monday.

...

Before the election, he said that if Obama was re-elected, he might retire and even halt work on the 90,000-square foot home he now has under construction, which many believe will be the largest private home in the United States. But he said he's going to keep working, and building the home, "as long as I enjoy going to work and there are not more obstacles thrown in my way."

Here is a link that might be useful: source


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

What this country needs - more 90,000 sq foot homes.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Posted by david52 z5CO (My Page) on
Tue, Nov 13, 12 at 10:20

What this country needs - more 90,000 sq foot homes.

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YES, IT DOES.

That home put a lot of food on a lot of tables and kept a lot of people off of food stamps.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

That home put a lot of food on a lot of tables and kept a lot of people off of food stamps.

Gee. If the same resources had gone into building 90 x 1,000 sq foot homes, you would have the same economic benefits, and there would be 90 families with homes, instead of one. Thats a whole neighborhood, and they'd all pay property taxes, fund a school, build a community, etc. You know, that whole support the middle class thing that Obama talks about.

But keep on defending that 0.001%, pretending that building mega-mansions is what makes this country strong. I just hope he put in car elevators. Keepin' up with the Romneys.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

People who build houses they can afford don't need defending by me, they don't need to defend or justify ANYTHING to ANYONE.

Who do you care what other people do with their money?

Assuming people paid their owed taxes, it's none of your business to speculate about how you think they COULD have spent their money.

None of your business.

Of course, your right to spend your time doing that.

I hope they did put in an elevator.
It helps people that work for OTIS or Kryssenthupp.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Thyssenkrupp?


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Oh, surprise, surprise, esh.

he said his company, Westgate Resorts, had record profitability this year

That darn Obama! He had record profits while that crazy socialist was in office. I can see why he wanted him out!


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Its pretty much a joke around here, where one neighborhood of 20 meg-mansions in Telluride or Aspen burns as much natural gas and uses as much electricity as an entire town, what with each one having a heated swimming pool, 300 feet of heated driveway, etc.

Having money means you can kiss off conservation and environmental considerations. Who gives a rip about global warming when you can crank up the AC in your 90,000 sq foot home?

Good citizens all. Job Creators, worthy of our awe and worship.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Posted by hamiltongardener CAN 6a (My Page) on
Tue, Nov 13, 12 at 12:10

Thyssenkrupp?

*

Haha, yes, that's what I meant.

That was one heck of a transposition error from my brain to my fingers!


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

How someone spends there money is their business but that does not mean that it is socially responsible. We all have an obligation to our environment and our fellow man.

For example, I was taken aback last year while in Florida with the numbers of HUGE gas/diesel driven yachts in the water. The water had a visible oil slick on it. That is just plain irresponsible and unnecessary but of course it is their "right" to spend their money as they wish even if it costs our environment.


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Haha, yes, that's what I meant.

That was one heck of a transposition error from my brain to my fingers!

Yes, well, a difference of opinion I can respect, but corporate dyslexia I simply cannot tolerate!


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RE: Sequestration, Fiscal Cliff -What's the Deal?

Well I was guilty of corporate dyslexia, but it was unintentional!~

New phrase. ;)


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