We had a server outage, and we're rebuilding the site. Most of the site features won't work. Thank you for your patience.
imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Congressional Budget Deal Betrayal

by Stephen Lendman Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013 at 7:42 AM

class war

Congressional Budget Deal Betrayal

by Stephen Lendman

Days ahead of adjourning until January, bipartisan complicity struck a deal no responsible government would accept.

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R. WI) and Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (D. WA) were involved.

On Tuesday, Obama thanked them for doing so. He asked for swift congressional action "so (he) can sign it into law and our economy can continue growing and creating jobs without more Washington headwinds."

He's mindless of the harm it causes. Throughout his tenure, he's waged war on social justice.

He wants America's resources earmarked for militarism, homeland repression, and generous corporate handouts.

Monied interests benefit enormously. Ordinary people are systematically denied. Budget terms hit them harder. More on that below.

Obama called Tuesday's agreement "a good first step." He lied saying it'll grow the economy and strengthen the middle class.

He wrecked both throughout his tenure. He wants ordinary people hit harder going forward. He wants them increasingly on their own out of luck.

Budget terms replace a small portion of harmful sequester cuts. It's far too little to matter. Around .2 trillion over 10 years was agreed on. Well over trillion remains. Expect lots more added later.

Cuts target vital social programs too important to lose. Deficit savings come mostly at the expense of Medicare providers. They've been hit hard before. They're targeted again.

Doctors and hospitals lose another 2% of their income. Doing so amounts to over 0 billion over 10 years. Social Security and Medicaid were spared.

Federation of American Hospitals president Chip Kahn criticized the deal, saying:

"America’s hospitals have grave concerns about the Murray-Ryan proposed budget agreement and urge Members of Congress to oppose it."

"The budget agreement threatens access to critical health care services for seniors by trading off Medicare cuts for increases in government and defense spending today."

"Rather than providing relief to the arbitrary Medicare sequester cuts, this agreement maintains the current cuts and extends these cuts into the future."

"It sustains bad budget policy under the guise of solving real mandatory spending issues facing this country."

Last spring, American Medical Association president Dr. Jeremy Lazarus said:

"Over the last 12 years, Medicare payments to physicians increased only 4%, while the cost of providing care jumped 20%." Budget cuts make it harder for patients to get care, he added.

"One in five Medicare patients already (face) difficulties in finding a doctor to take them. If you cut their pay, this access problem will only get worse."

Federal law triggers annual Medicare cuts. Congress blocked a 29% provider cut last January. It blocked others over the past decade.

Deficit reduction is too meager to matter. A short explanation said:

"The budget proposal saves billion over ten years by requiring the President to sequester the same percentage of mandatory budgetary resources in 2022 and 2023 as will be sequestered in 2021 under current law."

So-called mandatory budget resources refers mostly to Medicare providers. Budget deal terms are for two years. Government remains funded through September 30, 2015.

Cuts are about billion in mostly domestic programs. FY 2014 spending increases to .012 trillion. In FY 2015, it's higher at .014 trillion.

This year's spending reflected compromise. Months earlier, Senate members passed a .058 trillion budget. House members approved 7.

Current fiscal year military spending is 0.5 billion. Generous off-budget add-ons and black budgets add tens of billions more.

Domestic programs are allocated 1.8 billion. Around billion in new spending over the next two years provides somewhat more for Pentagon priorities than domestic ones.

Most sequester cuts are delayed. They'll continue annually through FY 2024. They'll be more later than now. Expect new cuts in the interim.

Social America is on the chopping block for elimination. Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are prime targets. Expect stiff cuts later on.

Current ones affect Medicare providers. They hit newly hired federal workers. They'll pay more into their pension fund.

Washington will contribute less. Effectively their pay is cut. It comes when inflation is far more than officially reported. Current federal employees aren't affected.

Military retirees under age 62 face a 1% cost-of-living (COLA) cut. They'll get less than they expected and deserve.

Selected government fees rise. Air travel got more expensive. One-way increases from .50 to .60. For round trips, it's .20.

It's for TSA security. It's more illusion than reality. It enriches well-connected providers. They profit hugely.

Scamming people to falsely believe they're safer pays well. Profiteers will earn more going forward. They'll do so at travelers' expense.

A dozen or more other cuts are imposed. They save a billion here, a  few billion there. Combined they decrease government services.

They do so when increasing vital domestic ones should be prioritized. Regressive policies head them the wrong way.

Agreement terms don't raise the debt limit. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates it'll be reached between March and June.

In October, Congress agreed to suspend the borrowing limit until February 7, 2014. Emergency Treasury measures let Washington keep doing it short-term.

They include suspending pension payments. Neither party said how they'll resolve the debt ceiling as next February approaches. Political brinksmanship may repeat.

Congress never failed to raise it. Since 1940, they did so 79 times. It lets the Treasury borrow more money. It's needed to pay federal obligations on time.

In theory, the debt ceiling is supposed to control federal spending. In reality, it does nothing of the sort. Expect another increase before Washington runs out of money next year.

Democrats largely support the budget deal. So do most House Republicans.  Speaker John Boehner said:

"While modest in scale, this agreement represents a positive step forward by replacing one-time spending cuts with permanent reforms to mandatory spending programs that will produce real, lasting savings."

Some Republicans oppose it. Senator Rand Paul (R. KY) said "undoing tens of billions of this modest spending restraint is shameful and must be opposed."

Americans for Prosperity is a Koch Brothers affiliated group. AFP president Tim Phillips said:

"The American people demanded, and were promised, reasonable spending limits. Politicians choosing to go back on their promise will be held accountable for their actions."

"Republicans should once again stand firm in upholding the modest sequestration spending cuts."

Budget terms delivered a lump of coal for Christmas. Around 1.3 million longterm jobless workers are affected. Their unemployment benefits expire yearend.

Republicans, Democrats and Obama agreed. They won't be extended. They'll be cut off. So will another 3.6 million unemployed in the first and second 2014 quarters.

By summer next year, nearly five million needy people will be dumped. They'll be ignored. So will their families.

Tax cuts for rich elites went untouched. So did generous corporate handouts. In 2014, they'll get lower tax rates. It's separate from the budget deal. It keeps America's war machine well funded.

Vulnerable unemployed workers are on their own. It comes during protracted Main Street Depression conditions.

Real unemployment tops 23%. Fake numbers conceal reality. So-called recovery is a convenient illusion.

Leaving five million unemployed workers and their families on their own any time is reprehensible. Doing it when hard times keep getting harder is unconscionable.

Doing it while generously funding corporate interests and war profiteering exceeds harshness.

Imagine! The world's richest country doesn't care. Popular interests go begging. Others benefitting wealth, power and privilege matter most.

Budget deal duplicity continues force-fed austerity. Obama's tenure reflects multiple rounds of social spending cuts. Vital programs were slashed.

Medicare was hard hit. More cuts are planned. Other vital programs are targeted. They face major cutbacks or elimination altogether.

Food stamp recipients were hit at the worst possible time. America's hungry face less help ahead. Homeless people are entirely on their own.

America's most disadvantaged face harder than ever hard times. Budget priorities increasingly ignore them.

Millions needlessly suffer. Bipartisan duplicity force feeds misery. Obama mandates it. So do most congressional members. Washington wages financial war on its most disadvantaged.

Neoliberal harshness is official policy. So is destroying America's social contract. I don't care defines Washington's agenda. Profiles in courage are sorely lacking.

Waging war on living standards reflects race to the bottom priorities. America was never beautiful. It's worse than ever in modern times.

Institutionalized inequality defines immorality. Future prospects look grim. America appears headed for third world status.

Disproportionate wealth and poverty extremes reflect it. So do millions of hungry children.

Leaving them on their own ill-nourished bears testimony to callous indifference. Bipartisan complicity assures it.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."


Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs Fridays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.



Report this post as:

Local News

Woolsey Fire: Worst News of 2018? J01 12:18AM

Oppose Environmentally-Harmful Development D10 4:03AM

Oppose Environmentally-Harmful Development D10 3:58AM

OUR HOUSE Grief Support Center Presents Night for Hope O30 5:38PM

Marshall Tuck’s racist dog whistle O27 5:01AM

Marshall Tuck’s ethnocentrism contradicts Californian values O27 4:32AM

Contra Costa-Hawkins O25 3:48AM

Debunking Some Anti-Prop 10 Propaganda O12 6:56AM

Why Should California Choose De Leon Over Feinstein? O10 9:55PM

Change Links September 2018 posted S02 10:22PM

More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre A30 11:09PM

Site Outage Friday A30 3:49PM

Change Links August 2018 A14 1:56AM

Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land A12 11:09PM

More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke J29 10:40PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 8:27PM

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 7:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 7:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 11:26PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Actor Patrick Kilpatrick Discusses and Signs his New Book Dying for Living J23 10:57PM

“Animaniacs in Concert!” Starring Voice Legend Rob Paulsen Heads to the Lincoln Center J23 8:45PM




Paraphysique du burnout post-démocratique J23 9:06AM

911 : establishment terror J22 11:18PM

Actor Patrick Kilpatrick Discusses and Signs his New Book Dying for Living J22 10:42PM

The Attack of Corporations and the Rich on the Rest of Society J22 2:36PM

bataclown J22 12:32PM

bataclone J21 8:08PM


Mobile Royale Hack Online Generator - Get Unlimited Crystals J21 3:03PM

Unification, séparation et fragmentation J21 2:48PM

Testing Upload J21 7:10AM



Chemtrails and Prince J20 2:43PM

Wages For Housework J20 2:41PM

Tutelle comportementaliste J20 9:18AM

A Mistake: Jesse Jackson-Toyota deal-in Lexington -Ky is .8 billion over 10 years 2018 J20 1:17AM

If Trump Declares a AantionalEmergency, He'll Be Breaking the Law J20 12:47AM

Jesse Jackson's Sneak Attck on Toyota Lexington Ky and it's workers 2018 J19 9:12PM

Video: Chris Herdges in Eugene, 1 hr 24 min J19 5:37PM



Judge Delays Ruling on Puerto Rico Debt Deal White House Opposes Island's Food Assistance J18 6:04PM


More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy