T. Shields: Doing the right thing

After seeing the way the federal government is conducted (with an annual budget deficit and a $16 trillion debt requiring huge interest payments), it is clear that a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution is needed.

President Obama refuses to specify any meaningful spending cuts. The House Republicans have submitted several budget plans, but Obama’s subservient Democrat Senate allows them to die, so no budget bill reaches the president’s desk. Thus, Obama looks blameless.

Obama favors raising taxes to fund his extravagances. The Democrats have already done that in the hidden taxes in Obamacare which will emerge this year and in 2014. (Remember Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, “Pass it now and read it later.”)

The liberal spenders in Maine can get around the balanced budget requirement by raising taxes, but that is not popular. Thus, they borrow money through bonding, or, as the Democrat-controlled legislatures did prior to 2011, opt to not pay Maine’s obligations to the health and retirement funds for the state employees and teachers.

The Democrats’ pals, the mainstream media, have already given the Obama administration a pass on the outrageous handling of the Benghazi massacre, sacrificing the ambassador and other Americans. They will likely do the same for the impending fiscal disaster.

In Maine, it remains to be seen what the majority Democrats will do, and undo, on the tax and education reforms the Republicans have enacted.

How much courage do they have to do the right thing?

Thomas F. Shields, Auburn

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 's picture

A balanced budget amendment

A balanced budget amendment without spending constraints would be worse than what we have now. Just passing that would mean the government could pass any budget and then tax everyone at a 99% rate. This country is broke and it is a matter of time before interest rates go up which means the interest on the debt will consume all revenue. At that point the civil society will essentially collapse and there will be riots and chaos on a scale we can't begin to imagine. As ye sow, so shall ye reap. enjoy everyone.

AL PELLETIER's picture


T. Shields sure has a way of bringing out the best ,and worse, in all of us.
Here we are again on the verge of a fiscal disaster, a Bush war still going on and no vote by republicans for Hagels confirmation to secretary of defense and for reasons so stupid they're laughable. Now they're on vacation again while our country waits.
It is common knowledge that this is the most "do nothing" congress in our nations history and republicans have become the party of "say no" to ever vote on issues important to keep America running.
And Obama is still to blame for everything that's wrong with America? OMG!!!

RONALD RIML's picture

Mr. Shields need learn the Constitution of the United States

And Mark Gravel along with him.

Article I, Section 8:

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States.

So you're pissing and moaning about The Chief Executive (not Congress) why???

MARK GRAVEL's picture

You are correct Ronald in

You are correct Ronald in what the constitution allows, but perhaps you did not listen to the President’s State of the Union address were the President sets the addenda for the nation and the Democratic Party. I stopped counting when I hit 15 new or expanded programs. I thought to myself where in the hell is all that money going to come from to fund this vision.

Moreover, if the president has no influence over the budget, why is the speaker of the house negotiating budget and taxes with the president? I’m all for the speaker telling the president to go F himself when it comes to budget negotiations.

While we all know what the constitution says, Mr. Shields and I (not you) know reality. Our criticisms are on the bulls eye.

RONALD RIML's picture

"Shall have the power"

'Shall' being an 'Imperative' command, Mark.

With power lies responsibility. Perhaps they don't teach that in the Air Force. - They sure as hell do in the Navy. Read about all the CO firings each year.

 's picture

Balanced budget amendment from a Republican

This is a late night comedy routine isn't it.
"President Obama refuses to specify any meaningful spending cuts." Obama has not only proposed more than $1trillion in budget cuts; he has signed them into law thus reducing the Bush deficit of 2009 (his last budget year) from $1.3 trillion to according to the CBO a projected $845 billion this fiscal year. The key in Mr. Shields comment is the weasel word "meaningful". The Republican proposals passed by the house were poison bills that they knew could not be passed by the Senate because they represent a "my way or the highway no compromise" and no deficit reduction approach.
"Obama favors raising taxes to fund his extravagances." Obama favors tax increases and budget cuts to pay for the extravagances of 30 years of Republican refusal to pay for their new programs and unnecessary wars. Republican Presidents have proposed and passed through Congress programs that added $14 trillion of our current National debt. They are the party of tax cuts not spending restraint.
"Benghazi massacre" ??? Another Republican invented non-scandal. 4 people were killed by terrorists. Terrible event that Sec. Clinton has responded to with detailed solutions to our mistakes that made it possible.
When Republicans start talking about solving America's real problems instead of wasting time on invented political talking points we may actually get something solved; but with folks like Mr. Shields around its very doubtful.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

If Harry Truman had been

If Harry Truman had been president when the Bengahzi non-massacre non-scandal occurred, Libya would now be referred to in the past tense. But, those were the days when American presidents were Americans.

Jason Theriault's picture


...And if he had destroyed Libya, that would have been a major overreaction.

Bottom line is this - There were plenty of Marines at the main embassy. Steven's didn't take them. And he could have not gone. He didn't sense a major attack, and we were unprepared. It was a screw up, but they happen, be it Bengazi, the USS Cole, the USS Liberty or the World Trade Center. You can't anticipate everything, but you can seek justice, which, almost 2 years ago, Obama gave a master lesson on.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

You're absolutely right.

You're absolutely right. Bengahzi was a screw up; a major one. But, the problem I'm having with it is no one owns it. No one owns Operation Fast and Furious. This regime is getting away with absolute murder and no one gives a squat. If Bush had been president when Bengahzi took place, the impeachment hearings would be underway and Hillary Clinton would be history.

 's picture

What utter BS

"If Bush had been president when Bengahzi took place, the impeachment hearings would be underway..." Bush was President when airplanes took out the twin towers and killed almost 3000 Americans on our soil. He failed to capture or kill the terrorists that did that. Instead he invaded Iraq which had nothing to do with the attack because Hussein tried to kill his father. If any President deserved impeachment it was Bush, but it didn't happen.
"No one owens Operation Fast and Furious". Several people were fired or disciplined because of it. They owned it. It was a local police action that failed because Congress failed to provide the laws to presecute straw purchasers and gun trafficers. They should own it. Once again a issue Congressional Republicans tried to make into a administration scandal and failed. They should own up to their failure.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

What utter BS

What utter BS

RONALD RIML's picture

There's grasping at straws - Paul.

Simply refute what he wrote. But you can't.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

“Instead he invaded Iraq

“Instead he invaded Iraq which had nothing to do with the attack because Hussein tried to kill his father.”

Take off your foil hat and show us the proof!

 's picture

Google Saddam Hussein and GWB

Congressional testimony, news reports, books, TV. If you were alive in 2003 you knew that statement is true. Well I may have been too positive about Bush's motives. Hussein did try to kill George H. W. Bush in Kuwait after Desert Storm. Bush II spoke of it in interviews. But since every other pretended reason for invading has been debunked its about the only motivation left. If not that then Bush II was a vacuous, unemotional, puppet. I give him more credit.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

"But since every other

"But since every other pretended reason for invading has been debunked its about the only motivation left."

An empty set is not proof. You still have no proof, just speculation.

 's picture

I assume you have lived on tis planet during the last 12 years

MSNBC has just completed a long review of all the the evidence last night. I didn't watch it. All the reported reasons the Bush administration gave for the war were false. So yes, I am speculating that George Bush invaded Iraq because Iraq planned his father's assaination after Desert Storm even though George Bush mentioned the assaination as a reason Hussein had to be replaced in an interview prior to the invasion. Its not speculation that the Bush administration lied to the American people. Its not speculation that Col Wilkerson aide to Colin Powell when he was Sec. of State stated over the weekend that he personal felt duped by the White House in the runup to the war. Said he will go to his grave knowing his support for the war was a grave mistake on his part.He also mentions Sec. Powell coming into his office and saying "What if we go in there and do all this and find nothing". Wilkerson recorded it at the time.
What other proof do you want? Colin would not be so impolitic to say the same thing.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Perhaps a wee bit more than

Perhaps a wee bit more than Jonathan Albrecht's "speculation".

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

You don't suppose I could

You don't suppose I could have been mimicking the first three words of his previous post, do you? School yard stuff; you know how that works. It isn't that I can't refute what he wrote. I simply refuse to waste my time trying to reason with Mr. Albrecht. I accept that he and I will never agree on anything, right or wrong, and I'm o.k. with that. As I have often said, engaging in pedantics is not my reason for coming here, but being informed and entertained is.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

If you're referring to the so

If you're referring to the so called killing of bin Laden, that was a farce. Body disposed of at sea in the dark of night. Even you must be able to see the bull s**t factor in that.

 's picture

Perhaps bigfoot got him, if not

who did. Because we have eye witnesses to his death and he hasn't popped up anywhere of late and he's off cell phones. Isn't tweeting anybody. But then perhaps you think he's taken a job with the NRA.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Doesn't take much to get you

Doesn't take much to get you to come out from under your rock, does it?

MARK GRAVEL's picture

” How much courage do they

” How much courage do they have to do the right thing?”

Mr. Shields, this statement assumes the Democrats know what the right thing to do is. They think it is right to tax and spend. I don’t.

Moreover, there are many Republicans that spend like there is no tomorrow. The simple solution is to send less of our dollars into the government coffers.

Let’s starve the beast we call Government.

 's picture

We now know where this kind of thinking came from.

In 1984, the Koch Brothers, members of the John Birch Society, and owners of extensive interests in the Energy and Wood Products Industries worth some $70 billion, and subject to frequent government fines for violations of a long list of regulations joined with Phillip Morris and other corporations in the tobacco industry to fight for a secret anti-tax, anti-regulation, small government agenda. Part of that agenda was to great an astroturf grassroots organization, Citizens for a Sound Economy, for the purpose of spreading their agenda. In 2002, Citizens for a Sound Economy, split into Freedomworks (the Tobacco Industries front group) and Americans for Properity (The Koch brothers John Birch Society front group). Their purpose to end regulation so that the Tobacco Industry could sell cigarettes to children and the Koch's could freely destroy the environment and exploit workers. Source peer reviewed report from the National Cancer Institute released last week.
The agenda is much more extensive than just the creation of the Tea Party who are simply pawns in these corporate efforts to undermine the Constitution and American Democracy.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

I also heard the Koch

I also heard the Koch brothers want to grind children’s bones into flour and squeeze the jelly from their eyes.

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Jonathan Albrecht and the

Jonathan Albrecht and the liberal left.

 's picture

Ah! but Mark I'm a Constitutional conservative.

I don't deny what has been documented three ways to Sunday.

 's picture

I hadn't heard that one yet

what's your source. My source was the National Cancer Institute.

RONALD RIML's picture

They can't do that.

Sheldon Adelson grabbed up the 'Rights'

MARK GRAVEL's picture

Sheldon should be held up as

Sheldon should be held up as an example of now someone from modest means can make it big in America. He is proof that social mobility in America is s alive and well.

Why do you fear wealth Ronald?

RONALD RIML's picture

Macao is in America??

Who'da thunk it!!!

Come drop Big $$$ on rare books in my shop and see how much I fear wealth. The ball's in your court if you have any.....

MARK GRAVEL's picture

I have continually asserted

I have continually asserted that every individual makes decisions that foster their own best interest. Not that there is anything wrong with that, it is a reality of the human condition in my opinion.

That said, I understand where you simultaneously want people to spend money franchising your tax sheltered hobby and your desire to increase taxes (compared to cutting spending) to secure you cash flow and medical benefits from dear old uncle Sam.

You are just being human after all; however, it does not make the later (tax increases) moral.

 's picture

I've never asserted that and I doubt its accuracy

people make decisions for all sorts of reasons some consistent with their own true best interests and some not. How else do you explain the Tea Party which rails against Federal spending while holding up their "don't touch my medicare" signs and which we now know are a front for the Tobacco industry which is simply using those people.

RONALD RIML's picture

What a 'Waffler'

You truly do lack Balls.

 's picture

Good job


MARK GRAVEL's picture

Well Ronald, I have to temper

Well Ronald, I have to temper my responses since you and the SJ police can’t handle the full unadulterated truth.

 's picture

correct error

Part of that agenda was to create not great.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Proor reeders dont make

Proor reeders dont make misteaks.


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