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Cheers and jeers

February 23, 2013

CHEERS — To an awarding winning “techie.” If you look up the term “techie” it may tell you it is a technician who is highly proficient and enthusiastic about some technical field....

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Feb-23-13 7:47 AM

JEERS to the Automatic Budget Cuts that President Obama proposed and signed into law, it was a huge mistake and his overspending practices and new entitlements have sent our economy on the downward spiral that they are on today. After next Fridays fiscal cliff even his creative book keeping will not be able to hide his inept administration.

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Feb-23-13 8:13 AM

Any rise in the minimum wage toward a living wage will mean that the recipient will need less from the property tax payer in terms of food stamps and social services. If you are a small business owner and anticipate going broke because you must pay a salary higher than the current minimum wage, you have an option. Try working for someone else in one of those high paid minimum age positions.

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Feb-23-13 8:20 AM

Small business owners will just hire less people or move to a more business friendly place.

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Feb-23-13 8:25 AM

TOT - I'm curious. Republicans want to cut spending, but you don't want the sequester to be implemented. In your opinion, what, if any, cuts would you make to replace the sequester? Anyone else, feel free to comment as well.

As for me, when the military budget is 52.42% of our budget, when we have 700 overseas bases, and when our budget is nearly as large as the rest of the world combined, I would make the lion's share of cuts there.

Other budget cutting efforts I would look for would be to increase efficiency through new technologies, and to look for any government functions that are no longer needed.

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Feb-23-13 8:29 AM

How long do Americans want to be enslaved to the corporate masters???If a small company can't afford this small increase maybe they should hire fewer people..If these people are minimum wage earners,unskilled young adults, its not going to hurt the economy if someone getting 20-25 hrs a week loses their job.Until we become a nation with less hand outs and produce in America what we need not what we hope we can sell we will forever be cutting off our nose to spite our face.

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Feb-23-13 8:40 AM

Yukonjack, you might find this an interesting approach. This is the minimum wage scale in Australia;

Under 16 years of age $5.87; At 16 years of age $7.55; At 17 years of age $9.22; At 18 years of age $10.90; At 19 years of age $13.17; At 20 years of age $15.59;

A scale like this provides young workers for low wage jobs and low wage jobs for young workers, but at the same time gives a living wage to mature adults. I like this idea, and I like it when people think outside the box.

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Feb-23-13 8:43 AM

Raising the minimum wage merely makes a situation where more people are making the minimum and fewer are paid above the minimum. If a person is making $8.50 and they raise the minimum from $7.50 to $9.00, that person will be moved to $9.00 not $10.50.

Secondly, it is only an inflationary measure. The money to pay for that increase must come from somewhere. Remember these are businesses and not the government. That money comes from higher costs that are passed on to the consumer. Wait, did some liberal just say "Take the money form the overpaid CEOs." OK, let's use GM The CEO makes $10 million per year. There are 200,000 employees. Take the $10 million and divide it equally, each employee gets $50.

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Feb-23-13 8:49 AM

@DaveGibson - As a conservative I agree, we spend far too much on the military. Some facts. 1. The United States spends $700 billion per year on defense, China at #2 spends $90 Billion. That comes out to $2,500 per person in the U.S. and $83 per person in China. 2. The U.S. spends more than the next 18 countries combined for a total of 40% of all worldwide defense spending. 3. Roughly 50% of our troops are stationed in other countries, providing their defense for them. Think about Germany, they can have a smaller army due to the large American presence. This gives them a competitive advantage as they can collect less in taxes (and they screwed that up). Yes, cut defense by 75% and close ALL of those foreign bases.

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Feb-23-13 8:57 AM

Dave great point! This has been my argument all along. When you put in place a new policy, like Obama's healthcare, you create a dependence on it. When it comes time to reel in costs you cannot touch it as people DEPEND on it. It goes on to every single policy that has ever been instituted someone depends on it. So what I favor is an all across the board a 10% cut. EVERY SINGLE THING gets cut the same. A rush to slash or a stand back and watch is not going to get it done properly. Controlled surgical cuts not a slash and hack job the president signed into law!

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Feb-23-13 8:58 AM

Scarecrow, we agree on this. But the military budget is almost $1 trillion when you add in military pensions, the VA, and foreign military aid.

Military bases are a boon to local economies. If nothing else, we should close down overseas military bases and reopen old ones, or build new ones right here in the US. Here in Georgia, there are several military bases and they're a huge shot in the arm to the local economy.

I don't know if we should cut the military budget by as much as 75%, but certainly we can be smarter as to how that budget is spent.

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Feb-23-13 9:01 AM

Scarecrow57 do you know how devastating your 75% military cut would be? It sounds good to save the cash and if it were done in increments may be fine but this type of drastic cut would shut down the government send our economy to unheard of lows. Not a good short term plan at all.

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Feb-23-13 9:04 AM

TOT - I'm confused. You wrote "10% cut. EVERY SINGLE THING gets cut the same... Controlled surgical cuts not a slash and hack job the president signed into law!

Isn't cutting everything 10% a slash and hack job, and not surgical cuts? Also, I think across the board spending cuts isn't the right way to do it. Increasing efficiency, ending outmoded programs, and cutting waste is a start. Spending out tax dollars smarter is also needed, as in closing overseas military bases and building new here, or investing on infrastructure (you wouldn't believe how many bridges in NY are substandard. Stay on the inside lanes on the Tappan Zee).

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Feb-23-13 9:13 AM

TOT - Agree, an overnight cut like that would be devastating. He has to be a long term plan done over many years. i recommend a series of Clinton like BRACs. Let's close Ramstein air base and reopen Plattsburg.

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Feb-23-13 9:17 AM

And heck since we are fantasizing. How about we eliminate all subsidies? Not just the ones you disagree with, but all of them. Let the people decide what they want via the free market system. And also eliminate all of the tax incentives and breaks. Stop trying to social engineer peoples thoughts via the wallet.

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Feb-23-13 9:18 AM

An increase in the minimum wage is probably justified, but I don't like the indexing idea, it is too much like the tri-borough amendment that teachers get and that is out of control.

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Feb-23-13 9:25 AM

Trimming 10% off a bloated government program is not hacking. I would say that if Nancy Pelosi had followed trough with that plan to cut costs through eliminating fraud and corruption they could have paid for a lot. How fiscally responsible are the democrats to put forth a spending bill like the Obamacare deal at a time when they should have been dealing with the financial crisis that was out of control? How can they now say that there is no spending problem when they have outspent any of the other administrations in history? I remember hearing how Obama would not sign a single bill that would add a single dime to the deficit... how soon we must forget!

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Feb-23-13 9:29 AM

It is good to see the Cheers recognize, for two weeks now, great members of the "evil" teacher's union. With all the negative press coverage, I just assumed all union members were evil, selfish, and lazy. One of these recognized collects one of those golden NYS pensions as well! mind has been blown. Maybe I shouldn't subscribe to all those generalizations about groups of people that are so easy to make.

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Feb-23-13 10:04 AM

Lots of discussion on the wage thing. Scarecrow is on the right track with CEOs pay being excessive. It used to be that (in round figures) the CEO made about 30 times what the lowest paid employee earned. Now they are not happy with thousands of times more, and they "need" perks like jets and an entourage of yes men lackys. Even in today's economy, who needs more than a couple million in salary??? Even and especially sports stars, which is the major reason for ticket prices being as high as they are, and most people treat them as gods. $20/hr seems like a lot of money until you look at the price of milk, gas, cars, and rents. And why weren't the Goldman-Sachs crooks doing the perp walk???

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Feb-23-13 10:12 AM

and I agreewith many that in a Capitalist society you are free to make as much as you want or can. But many of those at the top cant get enough. Society has lost the concept of "having enough" we like to call that greed. Part of anyone's job is the success of the company. but the execs "needs" have exceeded the limits of fair compensation. Until we instill responsibility in these boneheads, nothing will change. With freedom comes responsibility, that is what is lacking in most of society today.

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Feb-23-13 11:47 AM

I'm what point in time was a minimum wage entry level job redefined to be a 'living wage'? Was it when somebody decided it should be? Who was that, anybody know?

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Feb-23-13 1:14 PM

good question BoB, but there was a time not all that long ago when a family could survive quite comfortably on $4-$5 /hr. I know of a guy who was a kitchen helper in a restaurant (a notoriously low paying job). He had a small home, wife and a couple of kids, he even bought a new car(OK it was a baseline Corvair, but it WAS a new car). His wife may have worked part-time, but they had a decent life. An impossibility today at twice the wages he was paid at the time

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Feb-23-13 7:31 PM

Interesting comments today, especially the ones wanting to cut the military budget and close down overseas bases. Do any of you know why they are there and what their mission is?

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Feb-24-13 9:10 AM

Yes. We americans have to be the big cheese and police the world on tax payer money.

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Feb-24-13 12:38 PM

our overseas presence would be more effective IF we fought wars to win instesd of being politically correct.The unfortunate thing that has come to the forfront is the collateral damage of civilians being killed or injured, but this seems to be a one way street. Weren't those 3000+ that died in NY and PA on 9/11/2001 all civilians??? and it is really sad how the American news media aids in the over playing this aspect of the conflicts.

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Feb-24-13 12:50 PM

Real good point Rocky. With the various Treaties and agreements that are in place, rescinding some would change the whole political and military Asian/European map. Then again, a little chaos might wake them up from their economic slumber.

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