This is a political post.

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The media…as always…is doing a shit job of explaining to the American people what is going in in Washington regarding the debt ceiling.

There are two issues:

  1. The debt ceiling.
  2. The new budget.

The media, and the Republican Party, are working hard to make these two wholly different things seem like one thing.

They. Are. Not.



This establishes the maximum amount of outstanding federal debt the U.S. government can incur.

If the government spends more than it receives in taxes and other revenue the debt ceiling will need to be increased.

Since 1960, “Congress has increased the ceiling seventy-eight times, most recently in 2021. Forty-nine of these increases were implemented under Republican presidents, and twenty-nine were under Democratic presidents.”

The ceiling was increased three times under Trump.

If the government defaults on its debts, financial catastrophe will ensue.

This is vital: the debt ceiling only involves money already approved and spent. It is about past debt not future debt.



Congress must create an annual budget. Which will then be voted on.

The budget is about future debt.

Republicans have proposed a budget.

Democrats have proposed a budget.

Then, the two parties would normally work together to approve a budget after each is forced to compromise.

Here though is the problem.

Republicans want their budget approved. To get this they are holding the debt ceiling ransom. “If we don’t get our way we will force America into default!”

Biden though has been clear. He will not make deals with terrorists.



Republicans become fiscally conservative only when a Democrat is President. They are nothing like this when a Republican is president. And in my lifetime Republicans are much worse at creating a healthy economy than Democrats are.

Republicans want to slash spending. Never though on the bloated military budget. Instead, they want to slash spending on programs which help most Americans.

Democrats want to increase revenue to help most Americans. Their budget details tax hikes on the super-rich and corporations, as well as increasing funding to the IRS to capture billions super-rich people avoid paying because the IRS cannot afford to audit them. The new auditors will only target the super-rich, not you and me.



I own a business.

If I slash spending the only way to really do this is cut the budget to buy lights to restore. This is my single largest line item expense.

What would happen though is that my stock for sale would dwindle. Ever more until I have nothing listed for sale.

Then I would go bankrupt.

This makes no sense of course. What I always need is to increase revenue. The best way to do this is to increase my buying budget and get more lights listed. Yes, I will spend more but will earn even more.

I write this because most voters like the sound of this: Government should reduce spending!

Even I like the sound of that. However, is slashing a budget for the sake of slashing ever a good idea?

Methinks not.

Remember these two vital words never spoken by Republicans: increase revenue.




  1. Kate R on May 28, 2023 at 10:26 pm

    Spot on.

    And mainstream media should be ashamed of itself for taking the ratings route rather than asking the hard questions and posting the facts about the deficit and the budget.

    The so-called Freedom Caucus may think it’s hunkydory to push to negotiate within a non-negotiable situation and McCarthy may think it’s hunkydory to gaslight about Dem spending and say whatever pleases the cult but the truth of the matter is exactly what you stated. Corporations and the uber-wealthy can easily contribute their fair share of taxes.

  2. Ross on May 28, 2023 at 10:29 pm

    Thank you, Kate.

    And I massively agree with your two words: fair share.

  3. Harlan on May 28, 2023 at 10:50 pm

    Perhaps if they weren’t so busy taking our tax dollars and sending them to other countries the budget would be more palatable to raise it if it was actually going to the American people

    • Ross on May 28, 2023 at 11:09 pm

      Hi, Harlan.

      In 2020, America spent $51.1 billion in foreign aid.

      Golly. That sounds like a lot of money. Which is is.

      But…this was 1% of the federal budget. And military aid accounted for 23% of this.

      Helping people in other countries is something I approve of. Helping others in general is something I approve of no matter where they live. Right now, I could not be happier that my tax dollars are being spent to help people in Ukraine. Or fighting AIDS in Africa. Or reducing hunger anywhere. I regularly donate to the World Central Kitchen.

      We can afford this.

      And if we increase revenue by fairly taxing the rich and corporations we could help the American people even more, as the Democrats budget proposes.

      If I had a magic wand I would…with glee…reduce many government expenses. But helping others would not be on my reduction list.

      • Architectural Observer on May 28, 2023 at 11:35 pm

        Brainwashing exists. That is reality.

        • Ross on May 28, 2023 at 11:37 pm


      • Ross on May 28, 2023 at 11:36 pm

        And Harlan?

        That $50 billion America spends on foreign aid?

        If you double the number that is what we spend on corporate welfare.

        Yes, double.

        And this is an area I would like to wave a magic wand.

    • Architectural Observer on May 28, 2023 at 11:38 pm

      Harlan, you make too much sense! The indoctrinated will not understand you.

  4. julia on May 29, 2023 at 12:01 am

    great analysis 🧐

    • Ross on May 29, 2023 at 12:04 am

      Thank you, Julia. I worked to make a complicated issue easy to understand.

    • Architectural Observer on May 29, 2023 at 12:17 am

      If legacy (corporate) news sources fail to report that large majorities of the American public now view their journalistic product as straight-up propaganda, does that make it any less true?

  5. mlaiuppa on May 29, 2023 at 3:51 am

    Those three debt limit increases under Trump came after Paul Ryan gave corporations and the wealthy yet another big tax cut on top of the tax cuts the Republicans have been giving them for decades. So the rich get richer and the income cap gets wider.

    Add economy to your list. When the majority of the people do not have money to spend because it is in the pockets of the wealthy, just sitting stagnant, then they do not buy things. And when they do not buy things companies can’t sell them and make money so they can pay their employees so they can go out and buy things.

    We are in a vicious downward spiral of cutting wages that results in cutting spending, yadda yadda.

    The money concentrated on these über wealthy elites is useless. There is no way they could possibly spend it all and it just sits. Whether it sits in a bank or the stock market doesn’t matter. It’s not being spent so the economy does not benefit from it.

    That is why we need to increase taxes for those with a LOT of money. Way too much money. We can go back to the tax structure of Ronald Reagan for a start. Then maybe slowly make our way back to Nixon. Not sure we should go all the way back to Eisenhower but that is the direction we should at least be moving in.

    This country needs to pull it’s head out of the greed hole it is stuck in. That is the biggest problem with capitalism. It is difficult to stifle greed and promote philanthropy and altruism.

  6. Karen on May 29, 2023 at 6:04 am

    Excellent analysis. I would like to beat it into the heads of everyone who votes Republican that the U.S. economy does better under Democrats!

  7. Laurie L Weber on May 29, 2023 at 7:39 am

    And I love how they wait til the last minute to do something about it! If an employee of a business waited til the last minute to do their job and threw the corporation into turmoil, they’d be fired. I just can’t wrap my head around the fact that republicans won’t raise taxes on the rich and the ordinary hurting tax payers still think they’re the greatest leaders. Delusional is a word I seem to gravitate to lately.

    • Architectural Observer on May 29, 2023 at 9:28 am

      The sad truth is that both parties are hopelessly corrupt. In reality we have a Uniparty which likes to play Good Cop/Bad Cop; it’s all theater and both parties are taking us in the same horrific direction. As long as people continue to fall for the left/right illusion we will forever be divided. Divide and conquer is an effective strategy which is currently being utilized to our collective detriment. We all need to work at seeing the bigger picture more clearly in order to understand the endgame (and stop pointing fingers at each other).

      • Ross on May 29, 2023 at 10:53 am

        Dear Readers,

        I’ve known AO for 26 years. He told me he was planning to vote for Trump in 2016 because “he will destroy the government.”

        AO hates government.

        I reminded AO that, if the government collapsed, he would lose his Social Security.

        He got really mad. “But that’s MY money! I want MY money!”

        I shook my head. “If the government goes down, your money, and mine, will vanish.”

        AO thinks both parties are the same. “The sad truth…”

        But this isn’t true. The exact opposite is true.

        As y’all know I’ve spent years documenting how the Democratic Party is dedicated to improving the lives of the American people. Yet, I’ve not found a single instance of the Republican Party doing anything to help most Americans. Indeed, the Republican Party harms most Americans, which is tragically evident right now as they demonize the LGBTQ community, and work to strip rights away from women.

        AO states that both parties are corrupt.

        This is also not true. While there is, yes, corruption within both parties the vast majority of corruption is on the R side. Since Nixon:
        Republican presidents and their associates: roughly 176 people indicted.
        Democratic presidents and their associates: 2 people indicted.


        This is sooooo not the same. (The above numbers are from 2020. I included the recent 34 felony counts against Trump.)

        In short, the vast gulf between the two parties is stark:

        Democrats HELP.

        Republicans HARM.

        The Republican Party is now intent on destroying democracy. To not point this out will only harm my country.

        For, fascism can only take root when good people comply.


        • mlaiuppa on May 29, 2023 at 2:14 pm

          This is what I do not understand. Why vote for someone to represent you in government that wants to destroy that government? I’m sure if it actually happened these same people would be screaming about where’s their Social Security checks and Medicare. Most are from red states, with a lower case red. Those states that are in the economic negative and rely on Federal tax dollars from other states to support them. Destroy the government and you don’t get that money any more.

          My state supports the red states with our Federal tax dollars. If the GQP succeeds in destroying the government and shattering the united states into separate territories, we shall simply secede, there being no government to stop us. We’ll then be the 4th largest economy in the world.

        • Architectural Observer on May 29, 2023 at 8:55 pm

          “Never argue with an idiot. They will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.”
          ― Mark Twain

          • mlaiuppa on May 29, 2023 at 9:28 pm

            The quote conveys that you should never argue with stupid people, since they will not debate with facts and logic, but rather with emotions and illogical, and irrelevant information. Since most folks aren’t used to that, they will beat you through stupidity, which they are experienced in.

            Since Ross is using facts and logic to support his position and has not resorted to personal attacks I think we know who is experienced in stupidity here. You know when a debater is outmatched when they resort to personal attacks, be they original or harvested quotes grazed from the internet.

            Here’s a favorite of mine: “Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.”
            ― Isaac Asimov, Foundation

            I give you January 6, 2021 and the political party for which they stand.

          • Ross on May 29, 2023 at 9:45 pm

            Well said, Mary.

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