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Help save the United States!

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posted on Jul, 7 2004 @ 08:54 PM
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SkepticOverlord I challenge you to prove where I have forced by beliefs upon anyone?

Also, slank, I'm not even a Christian, good try though.

Astral, wrong. My "theory" is not flawed, what you were talking about is "facts" and my facts are right.

Most states on average receive about 16%-18% Federal Aid. Most of it is NOT for schools, most is for Highways. Schools are about 5-10% Federally Funded, the rest is the States.

Most States however have to fund themselves, unfunded mandates.

Now keeping in mind that the average level of Federal Funding is around 16% (Understanding Public Policy: Tenth Edition by Thomas R. Dye)

You begin to see through several examples, how without the unconstitutional unfunded mandates, States would have virtually no budget problems at all.


• A Virginia state representative recently testified before Congress that the city of Danville, Virginia, which has a population of 55,000, spent 13,800 staff hours and more than $176,000 to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. In all, Danville spent more than $6.3 million in 1993, or almost 16 percent of its local source revenue to comply with just 10 of more than 200 federal mandates.


Wow so 16% of an entire locality's budget is going to unfunded mandates.


• In 1991 the city of Columbus reported that it would cost over $1 billion to comply with the environmental mandates enacted as of January 1991. This 10-year cost amounted to a per-household increase of $856 per year by the year 2000.


And people are complaining that they only get a hundred bucks kick back in the tax cut...

This site discusses the URMA reform of 1995, which has failed.

www.cato.org...

Furthermore, most unfunded mandates come from the EPA, which is not even an elected legislative body.

About 16-20% of your taxes goes to pay for laws and regulations created by people who have survived countless administrations, and are faceless and you probably don't even know their names.

So Astral as you can see, it is YOUR theory of States needing federal funding that is wrong.

States do not need federal funding, the following would help:

Remove unfunded mandates.

Remove the federal income tax (a value added tax or simple national sales tax on unecessary goods: non-gormet foods, cheap clothes, gasoline; would make up for the differences while shifting the burden of tax from the worker to the consumer directly, thus allowing more investments and easier flow of capital such as in Europe.)

The removal of federal income tax allows more revenue to be drawn from the people by their States. Also the consequently smaller tax allows for more investments and thus economic growth and so GDP and thus taxable commerce will rise.

To give you a practical example, Germany, France, Britain, Spain, these nations are not starving for European "aid". There is no reason why our States should be crippled, especially when it is the Federal Government purposefully crippling them.




posted on Jul, 7 2004 @ 09:08 PM
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Originally posted by The Astral City
FreeMason, Just one more problem with your little theory:

States would have to spend much more actually without all the money they get from the feds! Immagine if suddenly all the programs, services, entities and agencies that the Federal government funded with income taxes suddenly dissapeared, and states had to pick up the bill.


Well I explained in my last post how really the Feds only fund several things, Highways mainly. About 50% of the High way money for States is from the Feds.


They'd also have to provide healthcare to the poor and elderly, costing them millions (if not billions in larger states.)


I don't have off-hand how much money from the Feds goes to the States to pay for health care, this did fall under portions of unfunded mandates, it would be interesting to see how much it really is. Like-wise 600 billion dollars of Federal money goes to health-care, welfare, medicare, medicaid and so on, so by removing that portion of the Federal Budget, which is unconstitutional, and by allowing the States to tax such to make up that much revenue, the system might even be more effecient. (money going to where it is needed, not to the most politically powerful).


What about the Fed's major expenditure, the military? Are we going back to just state-funded militia groups? Not if I can help it.


The Defense budget and everything else is about 40%. There is no reason why we can not maintain our Federal Military budget, since the US Constitution grants that power to the Federal Government.


Schools get federal funding, so too do police, fire departments, road repair crews and even garbage men. Without a strong federal government able to tax all citizens this money would have to come from the states, putting them further into debt.


Schools receive less than 10% of their funds from the Feds. So you are really nit-picking here, or confused about how much the Feds really pay for. 43 Billion dollars was the last figure I heard, that went from the Feds to the Schoo system, that is less than a billion dollars per state. Also "first-responders" (the rest of your list) received some 125 million dollars nationally from Bush's Federal hand-out.

Seriously, the States pay for almost everything, most of the Federal Funding comes from the highway funds



And that's just the tip of the iceberg!


No actually, that was virtually nothing. Your idea that States would be indebt without the Feds is just wrong, the Feds have a 5 trillion on-budget debt, and a 20-trillion off-budget debt. The United States is thus in debt for 2.5 years of its entire GDP. No State is currently in debt. And since other nations of the world have relatively little problem keeping their debt down, there is no reason that States can not handle their own issues.

After all, some of our States are some of the largest economies in the world, California is the 5th largest in the world.


Sounds like a bad deal to me. I think I'll stay part of the union, the Fed may have problems, and I wouldn't like it getting much bigger than it is now, but I think it's power over the states is about right now. If you don't like the way the Supreme Court has ruled, well that's the way it goes, I don't agree with them every time myself, but such is democracy.


You're not part of the "Union".

In fact I just had this discussion today about the differences between the European Union and the United States. Currently States are "non-existent authorities". Their only power is what the Federal Government allows them to have.

A Union is a Union of sovereign States. We are not a Union. So how you can "remain a part of it" is ignorance on your behalf. Also, it is not how "Democracy" goes.

We are not a Democracy.

We are a Union of Republics.

We have a US Constitution that says "the Feds can only do this, the States do whatever else."

The absolute truth? We are nothing more than a Common Market!

THAT IS ALL!

So when the Supreme Court makes rulings that are entirely outside the US Constitution, it is a BIG deal.

It is ignorance such as yours that is ruining our nation.

"I don't have a problem with the feds so long as it doesn't get bigger."

Yeah well I hate to tell you, but when you die, your grand-children will say the same thing, only the Federal Government will be bigger. And then it will grow some more and the people who didn't want it to get bigger will die, and the new people won't want it getting bigger than its NEW size.

Until finally we have no trace of Union left, it is just a massive Empire that does not care about anyone's rights.

Rome had a Constitution too...12 tablets actually, do you really think the Emperor even knew what was written on them by 100AD?

You need a history lesson.


May Peace Travel With You
~Astral


The time of peace in the United States is over, look at the election, it is a boiling pot of ideological hatred.



posted on Jul, 7 2004 @ 11:23 PM
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FreeMason says

No actually, that was virtually nothing. Your idea that States would be indebt without the Feds is just wrong, the Feds have a 5 trillion on-budget debt, and a 20-trillion off-budget debt. The United States is thus in debt for 2.5 years of its entire GDP. No State is currently in debt. And since other nations of the world have relatively little problem keeping their debt down, there is no reason that States can not handle their own issues.


"No State is currently in debt." Would you care to retract that statement, or shall I bury you with links that show that you are wrong? It amazes me how you just make stuff up when you don't know what you are talking about.



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 01:15 AM
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My last post was about your idea that we should get rid of the federal income tax, which is a horrid horrid idea.

To end my participation in this debate though, because it's going nowhere. FreeMason, your ideas are sheer lunacy. Economically, politically, and socially its a bad idea, to see why look above. They'd kill the union (yea baby the union!) if ever put into effect.

Although we have nothing to worry about because your ideas will never come to frutition, ever! The feds are not going to give up their power, and no state has the will or power to take it. If you can't even get support on this forum, you're in a lost cause my friend.

It's time to move on, we got real problems in America, lets talk about em! Let the madmen rant, the sane men and women are out to make the world better.

BadKitty, and everyone else who's argued so well alongside me, I'll buy you a drink sometime lol, thanks, and I'll see you around the boards.


Esther, you fight tooth and nail for what's right, I'm honored to have adopted you.

And to everyone,
May Peace Travel With You
~Astral, The Last Warrior Poet



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 01:38 AM
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donguillermo please give the links, no state is in debt, they can not budget for debt, hence the problems going on in California right now. This deficit matters (living within your means) I'm not talking about bond issuance and so forth.



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 01:40 AM
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Astral, sorry you just got your ass royally handed to you and you can't take it. I don't mind you packing-up, you obviously know nothing of what you're talking about.

Currently the European Union is kicking the United States' ass, they don't have an income tax. Please explain that one.



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 01:45 AM
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Oh and donguiellermo this is what I mean:

SECTION 1. LIMITATION ON PUBLIC INDEBTEDNESS. The legislature
20 shall not in any manner create any debt or debts, liability or lia-
21 bilities, which shall singly or in the aggregate, exclusive of
22 the debt of the territory at the date of its admission as a state,
23 and exclusive of debts or liabilities incurred subsequent to January
24 1, 1911, for the purpose of completing the construction and furnish-
25 ing of the state capitol at Boise, Idaho, and exclusive of debt or
26 debts, liability or liabilities incurred by the eleventh session of
27 the legislature of the state of Idaho, exceed in the aggregate the
28 sum of two million dollars ($2,000,000), except in case of
29 war, to repel an invasion, or suppress an insurrection, unless the
30 same shall be authorized by law, for some single object or work, to
31 be distinctly specified therein, which law shall provide ways and
32 means, exclusive of loans, for the payment of the interest on such
33 debt or liability as it falls due, and also for the payment and dis-
34 charge of the principal of such debt or liability within twenty
35 (20) years of the time of the contracting thereof, and shall
36 be irrepealable until the principal and interest thereon shall be
37 paid and discharged.


Stuff to that effect. I don't need to write 50 pages on stuff you should already know, when I said that the States have no debts this is exactly what I meant and until very recently most States had very well lived within their means. With more unfunded mandates (orange alert status in the Terror Alerts) the States are now finding themselves not able to follow their own constitutions.



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 10:37 AM
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FreeMason, if all you have left is to flood the forum with your threads, resort to personal attacks, attack my endnote and re-post the same information, you've lost the debate.

The "union" that I have been refering to is the United States, it's a common nickname for it, and one that was used by northern federalist troops in the Civil war.

I've also lived in the European Union (France & England), and I will again when I move back in 2005. They are slowly becoming more federalist themselves, laws are becoming more standardized and their economy is centralized. However they haven't yet had a federalist party, and their government is set up to work more as a limited "over-government" in an effort to preserve local traditions, power and languages. Europe's history is very different from that of Ameirca though, New York and Pennsylvania never fought a hundred years war. Europe's a special case, so is America two very diferent countries and many very different peoples.

Just answer me these questions:

How? How on earth do you plan to give rights back to the states? Where is the support going to come from? How are you going to get the federals to give up their power without a seccond and even more violent civil war?

Anyways, I'll be living overseas again before anything could happen, but I just don't want to see America fail because of one really bad idea.

May Peace Travel With You, For Peace Is Always Possible
~Astral



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 11:58 AM
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Originally posted by FreeMason
donguillermo please give the links, no state is in debt, they can not budget for debt, hence the problems going on in California right now. This deficit matters (living within your means) I'm not talking about bond issuance and so forth.


Issuing a bond is not a debt??? That is exactly what a bond is, a debt. Here are a few links showing specific states that are in debt.

www.sptimes.com...

www.obm.ohio.gov...

www.ofm.wa.gov...

This last link is for the State of Washington. Notice what it says.


The following pages present summary information displaying:

The amount of bonds authorized by type of debt; and
Debt service summaries for future years resulting from this capital plan and all previous authorizations, separated by type of debt.


Still maintain that a state which issues bonds is not in debt? Want more links?



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 12:17 PM
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Originally posted by The Astral City
(For those of you not from Chicago, the Robert Taylors were one of the nation's worst housing projects, and life within them was akin to thrid world tentament slums. They were finally destroyed a couple years ago, but for as long as I remember they were one of the most depressing sights in the city)

May Peace Travel With You
~Astral


I live in Chicago also. The Robert Taylor Homes, Cabrini Green, and the other projects that have been destroyed, or are in the first phases of destruction, were an embarassment to the city. But also remember: those homes didn't always look that way. The people living in them broguht them into such decay, that they would have to be torn down anyways. On Halsted, they built the replacement Townhomes for those being displaced by the tear-downs. They are pretty sharp looking. But, it's only a matter of time before those homes become dens for gangs, and those white boys from the 'burbs looking to buy some crack.



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 04:24 PM
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Yea, very true that the gangs, rich white pill-poppers, pimps, and such are what really made the projects dangerous, but the City Of Chicago was the biggest slumlord in town for many years. Poverty is a pretty complicated thing, and I think the worst epidemic in America right now. But, this is something for another thread, and I think I'll start one about it, thanks for the idea.

My point though was that without money from the feds for helping the poor, they'd be even worse off than they were in the Taylors. The new townhouses were paid for largly with fed dollars given durring Bush I and Clinton's years. Without that money, the big old human warehouses along the Dan Ryan would probably still be there.

May Peace Travel With You
~Astral



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 06:44 PM
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(from somewhere up tha' thread...)- "If John Kerry were a shoe, he'd be a flip flop."


"if dubbie were were a shoe... he'd be a stinking loafer."



posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 07:11 PM
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States have successfully secured a $20 billion bailout from Washington to close their expanding budget deficits. Never mind that they created their own fiscal crises by increasing spending nearly twice as fast as the federal government has since 1990.

Refusing to accept responsibility for their own reckless spending, states won the media’s sympathy by instead blaming a new wave of “unfunded mandates” in education and homeland security imposed on them by Washington.

Unfunded mandates, however, didn’t cause the current state budget messes.

Only two significant mandates have been enacted since the 1995 Unfunded Mandates Reform Act, according to a new report from the Congressional Budget Office. They are the 1996 minimum-wage increase, and the 1998 limit on federal reimbursements for state food stamp administrative costs. (The funding status of a third mandate, the 2001 port security bill, is still undetermined.) These two mandates cost the states, on average, a combined $9 million per year, or less than one-tenth of 1 percent of most states’ general fund. Not exactly a budget-busting amount.

What about those expensive new education and homeland security programs? Contrary to sympathetic media reports, they’re more accurately classified as “programs that states don’t want to pay for.” An unfunded mandate, after all, must be both unfunded and mandated. And nearly all recent federal education and homeland security programs are either voluntary or fully funded.

Take the No Child Left Behind Act. Washington hasn’t mandated that any state implement this law. It merely suggested a model, and offered to subsidize states willing to implement it. States that dislike the federal model, or find the funding insufficient, are free to opt out and run their own programs.

Some call these programs “de facto mandates” because no rational state would opt out of the federal programs. Why is it irrational to opt out? Because the federal money more than justifies the federal strings attached. States enroll unanimously in these programs not because they’re required to, but because the deals are too good to pass up.

Then why are states still so angry with Washington? Because they want that money with no strings attached. They’ve come to consider themselves entitled to the $400 billion they receive annually from Washington. They demand federal dollars, yet they bristle when Congress insists on influencing how its own money is spent.

Consider again the education example. In 1965, Washington offered money to states that volunteered to implement the federal model for educating disadvantaged children. Participating states were given wide latitude to spend this money on their own education programs -- latitude states now take for granted. Then, the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act required participating states to more closely align their spending with the program’s federal goals. The free lunch of Washington subsidizing states’ pet education programs was over.

States may label this reassertion of federal authority over how federal money is spent an “unfunded mandate,” but the No Child Left Behind Act is neither unfunded nor mandated. If the program’s funding was insufficient to justify the increased federal meddling, states would have opted out. So far, none have.

True, states are still burdened by pre-1996 unfunded mandates. The largest and least fair is Medicaid, whose $200 billion annual cost is only half-funded by Washington. Yet states aren’t blameless either, as 60 percent of Medicaid spending is for populations and treatments that states voluntarily added to their own Medicaid programs.

Other pre-1996 unfunded mandates, such as special education and many environmental regulations, should be either funded or removed. But how can states blame 30-year old unfunded mandates for budget crises that suddenly began in 2001?

Note the irony: States demand total control over the spending of their own tax money. Yet by acting as if they’re entitled to federal dollars with no strings attached, they challenge Washington’s equal right to control how its tax revenues are spent. Now who’s trying to impose an unfunded mandate on whom?

Brian M. Riedl is Grover M. Hermann Fellow in Federal Budgetary Affairs in the Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation.




Distributed nationally on the Knight-Ridder Tribune wire



posted on Jul, 10 2004 @ 10:25 AM
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Originally posted by DEEZNUTZ
I was appalled to hear that the Catholic Church was going to start refusing communion to politicians that supported abortion rights.

The Catholic Church believes that abortion is against God and a sin.
Whether or not I agree is not the issue.
I am appalled that anyone would take Communion if they supported abortion rights. The two ideas are in complete and total disagreement.

You would have to be amoral to follow both ideas.



posted on Jul, 11 2004 @ 06:12 PM
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Originally posted by DontTreadOnMe

Originally posted by DEEZNUTZ
I was appalled to hear that the Catholic Church was going to start refusing communion to politicians that supported abortion rights.

The Catholic Church believes that abortion is against God and a sin.
Whether or not I agree is not the issue.
I am appalled that anyone would take Communion if they supported abortion rights. The two ideas are in complete and total disagreement.

You would have to be amoral to follow both ideas.



So if you're Catholic does that mean that you shirk you're responsibilities as a politician and vote based on your religious beliefs when it affects people that don't subscribe to that religion? Politicians need the freedom to vote and support matters outside of their religious beliefs if it is in the best interest of the nation.



posted on Jul, 11 2004 @ 07:29 PM
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Originally posted by DEEZNUTZ
Politicians need the freedom to vote and support matters outside of their religious beliefs if it is in the best interest of the nation.


Quite frankly, I think you've got it backwards. It's ones moral and religious beliefs that make them what they are. That's what I vote for. Voting ones political beliefs results in change as often as the wind shifts direction. Those without the guts to stand up for and with their religious beliefs cannot possibly make the right decisions on a consistent basis because they have no consistent basis.



posted on Jul, 14 2004 @ 09:34 PM
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Originally posted by CommonSense
Those without the guts to stand up for and with their religious beliefs cannot possibly make the right decisions on a consistent basis because they have no consistent basis.


Does that mean those with no religious affiliations are inconsistent, have no convictions and have no basis for their beliefs?



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