Dec 11 2013

The 2 Year Budget Deal In 90 Seconds

(10 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

A two year budget deal was reached yesterday with congressional leaders announcing the deal that would to replace $63 billion in sequester cuts, a very small part of the $180 billion in cuts that will occur over the next two years. The deal will restore defense cuts by funding from a tax on airline travel and cuts to federal pensions. The budget does not include extension of unemployment funds to the millions of workers who are about to lose their benefits the end of December. There will be no changes to Medicare or Social Security but none of the tax loop holes were closed.

As Ezra Klein puts it:

Whether this deal can be a model for future deals is an open question. The core principle of this deal is that Democrats didn’t have to touch entitlements and Republicans didn’t have to touch taxes. But a lot of the policies that made that possible got used up in this deal. It’s not clear that another deal like this would work in 2016.

DSWright at FDL News Desk notes:

The Republicans got everything they wanted. They get more cuts while none of their friends in the defense industry get hurt – actually they even got to do some damage to the federal pension system. All that while avoiding another shutdown that killed their poll numbers before the 2014 elections. Christmas came early for the GOP.

The Democratic Party, on the other hand, sold out its own base to help Republicans maintain power. Why? Who knows? The only thing that is clear is this is an awful deal for majority of Americans.

Once again, the majority of Americans get screwed by their elected representatives.  


Skip to comment form

  1. TMC
  2. Zorba

    Money keeps flowing to the defense industry, and meanwhile the long-term unemployed got shafted because of no extensions to unemployment benefits.

    And I would think that many of them are on food stamps, which have already been cut.

    If you’re poor in this country, you are going to get screwed by Congress and their benefactors- Big Business and the wealthy in general.  

  3. Anne

    going to squeeze money out of when they run out of the old, the poor and the sick?

    If you have a job, a retirement account, or anything that vaguely resembles the trappings of the middle class, look out: you’re next.

  4. MO Blue

    It’s worth reiterating just how dramatic an outcome this really is. It’s unclear whether Congress has ever cut off unemployment insurance with long-term unemployment this high; it certainly has not happened since the middle of last century, and probably before.

    The question is whether lawmakers – Democrats and Republicans alike – will care enough to make it happen.

    “It’s as if a big company all of a sudden laid off 1.3 million people in one fell swoop without any severance,” Josh Drobnyk, spokesman for Dem Rep. Sander Levin, who is pushing hard for an extension, tells me. “These are people who will go from getting a $300 check to getting nothing. No one can really know what the reaction will be. We believe the pressure will be intense.”

    Of course, Democrats and some observers – including the proprietor of this blog – thought the bite of the sequester might lead to public pressure to lift it. Though the sequester did have a real impact, it got little national media play, and the impact was too diffuse to concentrate the minds of lawmakers, so the response ended up being mostly a collective shrug. Perhaps the same will happen again. Merry Christmas, folks!

  5. MO Blue

    that places like Subway want to pay people $15 an hour but they can’t find anyone to work for them because people are making toooooooooo much money on unemployment. Now you may be somewhat skeptical of this pronouncement since the average unemployment benefit is $295 (or approx $7.38 an hr.) but it just has to be TRUE because it was reported on T.V.

    Please don’t even go into how the people on food stamps are living large on our tax dollars.

    It no longer surprises me that we have a government by the corporations and for the corporations since our fellow citizens buy into this crap. Doesn’t surprise me but it does makes me sad.

  6. MO Blue

    increase the numbers who are poor and sick, they can continue to fleece a whole lot of people before others realize that they might be next.

    Job growth is coming from low-paying industries

    The US economy is gaining workers, but many positions are part time or paying modest wages as the service sector picks up.

    …Job growth is coming from low-paying industries

    The US economy is gaining workers, but many positions are part time or paying modest wages as the service sector picks up…. link

    Skin in the game:

    Many people (like me) signed onto a marketplace plan, assuming the insane deductibles only applied to big-ticket surgeries. Imagine my surprise when I found out I couldn’t even see a doctor until I’d paid $6000 out of pocket. Okay, so I decided to switch to an HMO, but then found out I couldn’t see my doctors at the local teaching hospital without paying as much as $100 in co-pays — as opposed to $30 for the incompetents at the other area hospital. (Remember “you can keep your doctor”?) It seems we still have a medical caste system. link

    Sure glad that we were assured that this wasn’t junk insurance.

  7. MO Blue

    The deal cuts pension cost of living raises by 1% for military retirees who aren’t disabled and not yet 62 years old. Cost of living hikes are automatic raises intended to keep up with inflation.

    The problem is, most military retirees are a lot younger than private sector retirees. They enlist in their 20’s and retire in their 40’s. Very few stay on till they are 62 — those who may be lucky enough to escape major injuries at war, or rose to higher echelons in the military system.

    When compounded, the 1% cut could result in much more than a 20% cut in retiree pension over the course of 20 years.

    The average cut in pension payouts, including compounding interest, for a retiring Army Sergeant first class, would be about $3,700 each year, according to the Military Officers Association of America. Over 20 years, the total losses could balloon to more than $80,000. link

Comments have been disabled.