Another Cost Of Runaway Spending

CNS News is reporting today that the amount of the U. S. Government debt held by the Federal Reserve has increased by 257 percent since President Barack Obama was first inaugurated on Jan. 20, 2009, and the Fed is currently the single largest holder of U.S. government debt.

The article reports:

Since Obama has been president, the publicly held portion of the U.S. government debt (as opposed to the “intragovernmental” debt the government has borrowed from federal trust funds such as the Social Security Trust Fund) has increased by  $5,264,245,866,257.40. The $.221369 in additional U.S. government debt the Fed has purchased during Obama’s presidency equals 23 percent of all the new publicly held debt the Treasury has issued during that time.

Please read that again. That paragraph refers to the fact that the government has borrowed from federal trust funds such as the Social Security Trust Fund. Remember, this is the government that is referring to Social Security as an entitlement. I don’t think I am too far off base when I say that the way the government has handled the Social Security Trust Fund should convince us that we should give the government as little of our money as possible–they did not handle money well.

Unless we elect people who are willing to curb Washington’s runaway spending, our nation will be bankrupt by the time the next president takes office.

What Really Happens When You Raise Taxes

Yesterday Ed Morrissey at Hot Air posted an article about what has happened to tax revenue in the Great Britain since the government put a 50% tax rate on wealthy residents. The new tax rate went into effect in January of this year.

The article reports on the results of the tax hike:

The Treasury received £10.35 billion in income tax payments from those paying by self-assessment last month, a drop of £509 million compared with January 2011. Most other taxes produced higher revenues over the same period.

Senior sources said that the first official figures indicated that there had been “manoeuvring” by well-off Britons to avoid the new higher rate. The figures will add to pressure on the Coalition to drop the levy amid fears it is forcing entrepreneurs to relocate abroad.

What did they expect? Those people who have accumulated large fortunes have also gained the knowledge of how to manage those fortunes or employ people who know how to manage them. Taxing the rich at a confiscatory rate decreases tax receipts and puts a larger tax burden on the middle class.

Mr. Morrissey points out:

Obama’s plan to hike capital-gains taxes to 20% and push a surtax on higher earnings will produce the same result here.  The capital that might have gone to work in the US will go to work somewhere else or not at all, which will not just kill the direct revenues expected in static tax analysis from the hike, but also discard the revenues that would have occurred had the capital been put to work here.  That’s the lesson from the British face-plant on surtaxes, and hopefully the US learns that lesson the easy way.

At the risk of appearing pessimistic, I can’t imagine President Obama learning from the British experience. Hopefully the next president will be able to undo some of the damage that is about to be done.

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If Investors Ran Their Portfolios Like The Government Runs Theirs…

Today’s Detroit News reported today that the government has revised the estimated losses from the auto bailout up $170 million.

The article reports:

In the government’s latest report to Congress this month, the Treasury upped its estimate to $23.77 billion, up from $23.6 billion.

Last fall, the government dramatically boosted its forecast of losses on the rescues of General Motors Co., Chrysler Group LLC and their finance units from $14 billion to $23.6 billion.

Much of the increase in losses is due to the sharp decline of GM’s stock price over the last six months.

Three solar companies the government invested in went bankrupt or laid off workers last week. The losses in the bailout of the auto companies were considerably more than what was initially projected. Have we learned yet that the government should not be investing taxpayer money in private businesses? Government interference in the free market has done nothing but take large amounts of money out of taxpapayers’ pockets and increase the national debt. Someone is needed in Washington who can put a stop to the overspending and misuse of taxpayers’ money.

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Why We Shouldn’t Let The Government Invest Our Money

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On November 14, the Detroit News reported that American taxpayers will lose $23.6 billion, up from its previous estimate of $14.33 billion, on the bailout of General Motors.

The article reports:

The Treasury now pegs the cost of the bailout of GM, Chrysler Group LLC and the auto finance companies at $79.6 billion. It no longer includes $5 billion it set aside to guarantee payments to auto suppliers in 2009.

The article goes on the chronicle the losses in the government bailout programs in various sectors of the economy.

The article reports:

The new estimate also hikes the overall cost of the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program costs to taxpayers. TARP is the emergency program approved by Congress in late 2008 at the height of the financial crisis.

In total, the government used $425 billion to bailout banks, insurance companies and automakers, and provided $45 billion in housing program assistance.

The government now expects to lose $57.33 billion, including the full cost of the housing program, up from $36.7 billion. The new estimate means the government doesn’t believe it will make an overall profit on its bailouts.

Again, the problem is that we are spending too much, not that we are taxed too little.

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