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post #21 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:20 PM Thread Starter
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Here is a case in point to determine if you are really for fiscal conservatism. I believe the concepts of fiscal conservatism and global imperialism are diametrically juxtaposed. IOW, you cannot support small government, while also supporting the presence of U.S. military troops in 135 nations across the globe. Nothing costs more money and requires more manpower and bureaucracy than trying to maintain military control and financial dominance throughout the entire world. The GOP charter supports both, but we both know that's a lie....

Well here is an oportunity to say I am sitting on the fence or I want the best of both worlds or a number of other charges.

I believe in a strong military, I do not believe in isolationism, and I believe that we need a number of forward bases and they provide a number of benefits. On the other hand I think the number of forward bases can be consolidated to a much smaller number and a number of host countries can significantly increase their contributions to our bases on their soil.

Do we really need 4 (or whatever the number is, not interested enough to actually look it up) bases in Japan and don't you think that Japan can afford to pay for a much larger portion of the bases than they do?

Do we really need to spend millions of dollars to improve a military base that we only have a short term lease on?

Are Naval Air Stations really needed in the US hundreds of miles from the ocean?

So if we take your number of bases in 135 countries are we any worse off (militarily) if we cut that number to 60? That would allow the military to reduce spending while still investing where they feel it is necessary.

But we should not stop at consolidation of of bases in other countries but should consolidate the number of in the US.
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post #22 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:21 PM
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Yes, but that was a path he was forced down to a large extent. You cannot support national health care and claim fiscal conservatism -- period.
I disagree. National Health care, as a concept sounds like a extremely large government program that involves extreme amounts of cash and retooling. Opponents have made it into a monster that I really think is overblown in some respects.

Most of the costs associated with the program already exist, somewhere. Depending on the version [or vision for the eternally optimistic] most of the Nationalization of the project would be in the oversight and regulations that keep private corporations from being able to refuse or cut off insured on a regular basis, also allowing folks who are not able to buy into group plans or system plans due to costs to be able to do so a a more regulated rate.

My impression is that much of these plans are regulatory in that they push insurance companies into coverage for people who the companies now ignore for various reasons. It also would involve tort reform to lesson the abilities for Doctors to be sued if they didn't notice the micron sized node in the back of the skull the last time they were giving Uncle Burt a Colonoscopy which caused him to get ED at 82.

The Fiscal Conservatism in that concept comes from the overall reduction of costs as people quit using ERs as their Primary Care facilities, as people quit calling 911 for their insulin hits because they can't afford to get it from the pharmacy until the first of the month, as people start using the healthcare system as it is intended and not having to wait until they are in dire consequence before going to the doctor because they could not afford to go sooner and the state then has to pick up the tab for a big bill when an office visit 60 days earlier would have saved much trouble, pain and money.

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post #23 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:28 PM
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Fiscal conservatism means eliminating cost from our federal government. It does not speak to eliminating cost from the private sector. Moving expense from our federal government to the private sector is a tried (well, not lately) and true form of fiscal conservatism. Shifting cost from the private sector to federal government is obviously its opposite.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #24 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:31 PM
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Well here is an oportunity to say I am sitting on the fence or I want the best of both worlds or a number of other charges.

I believe in a strong military, I do not believe in isolationism, and I believe that we need a number of forward bases and they provide a number of benefits. On the other hand I think the number of forward bases can be consolidated to a much smaller number and a number of host countries can significantly increase their contributions to our bases on their soil.

Do we really need 4 (or whatever the number is, not interested enough to actually look it up) bases in Japan and don't you think that Japan can afford to pay for a much larger portion of the bases than they do?

Do we really need to spend millions of dollars to improve a military base that we only have a short term lease on?

Are Naval Air Stations really needed in the US hundreds of miles from the ocean?

So if we take your number of bases in 135 countries are we any worse off (militarily) if we cut that number to 60? That would allow the military to reduce spending while still investing where they feel it is necessary.

But we should not stop at consolidation of of bases in other countries but should consolidate the number of in the US.
Why not leave Japan completely? Why do you believe we still have troops there? How are Americans benefiting from our military presence there?

BTW, no country in the world is paying a higher percentage of our expenses in regard to maintaining local U.S. military bases than Japan.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #25 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by GermanStar View Post
Fiscal conservatism means eliminating cost from our federal government. It does not speak to eliminating cost from the private sector. Moving expense from our federal government to the private sector is a tried (well, not lately) and true form of fiscal conservatism. Shifting cost from the private sector to federal government is obviously its opposite.
Very true. There is no such thing as conservative socialism.

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post #26 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:35 PM Thread Starter
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As for hearing any worthwhile suggestions, have you actually read any of the 4 major proposals that are floating around right now? I mean READ them, not get the talk show 30 second synopsis of them.

Half my family is in medicine and the other half is in systems analysis so we have unbearable discussions on these things on a regular basis, actually getting into the meat of the issues, not the fluff that the talkradio or Cable TV guys yammer about. And there are solutions out there but they are not going to be simple and they are not going to be easy for anyone.
Really? Half of you family is in health care and you are for nationalizing it?

A large portion of my family is involved in healthcare as well. I personally know and felt the impact of the healthcare changes enacted under Clinton. I know people in healthcare that were laid off. I know people in healthcare that took pay cuts.

The changes for the worse in healthcare have continued. I have friends and family that have left the industry due to the changes, the increased paper work, the increased BS, the decreased quality of care they can provide. These are changes implemented by gov't agencies not private industry.

If the other half of your family is in analysis you should know how statistics are skewed. The results are different depending on not just the questions asked but the way they are asked. You should know that statistics can be sliced and diced to paint the picture you want to support your point of view.

I have been involved in some of those studies and have seen the BS involved to skew the results.

Have you seen the statisics on the number of people that do not have health insurance because they "do not get sick" and don't want to spend the money. Last couple of times I looked these numbers are no longer published in studies.

Have you seen the statisics on the number of people that "can not afford" health insurance yet have cable TV, and smoke 1 or more packs of cigs a day?

There are so many ways the published numbers are skewed and screwed with it is not even funny. I could continue to list examples but why bother? It will not change the minds of those that feel to gov't needs to protect people from themselves.

This country loves to punish those people that take responsibility for themselves and reward those who do not.
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post #27 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:39 PM
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Very true. There is no such thing as conservative socialism.
Ever hear of social conservatives? They may not support national health care, but they do want the federal government to impose and enforce a social agenda upon Americans at the expense of personal liberty.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #28 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:40 PM
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Well here is an oportunity to say I am sitting on the fence or I want the best of both worlds or a number of other charges.

I believe in a strong military, I do not believe in isolationism, and I believe that we need a number of forward bases and they provide a number of benefits. On the other hand I think the number of forward bases can be consolidated to a much smaller number and a number of host countries can significantly increase their contributions to our bases on their soil.

Do we really need 4 (or whatever the number is, not interested enough to actually look it up) bases in Japan and don't you think that Japan can afford to pay for a much larger portion of the bases than they do?

Do we really need to spend millions of dollars to improve a military base that we only have a short term lease on?

Are Naval Air Stations really needed in the US hundreds of miles from the ocean?

So if we take your number of bases in 135 countries are we any worse off (militarily) if we cut that number to 60? That would allow the military to reduce spending while still investing where they feel it is necessary.

But we should not stop at consolidation of of bases in other countries but should consolidate the number of in the US.
Now we are playing in one of my sandboxes.

This is one of the places where Clinton's fiscal conservatism both shined AND provided damage.

In the 93-95 I had contracts with the Air Force for BRAC [Base Realignment and Closure], which was a team that went through every Air Force facility in the United States and [in my case] Europe assessing all the different impacts the base would have if it stayed open, was shut or mission modified.

The decisions were based on everything from flight missions, environmental, regional economic impact and consolidation with other bases. First thing I learned was that the local Congressman was VERY interested in every aspect of the investigation, up to and including providing an assistant to drive me around, take me to dinner etc. So the first thing we learn is POLITICS is the primary criterion for base existence. [and her name was Heather]

As for forward bases, Politics again play a major role. In many countries it is our way of gifting millions of dollars to the local economies. In other countries it is their way of gifting millions of dollars to our government. In 1981 Ronald Reagan wanted a 600 ship Navy. The concept bankrupted the Soviet Union, ran up $3Trillion in US Debt and now most of those ships are either sold, rusting or Toyotas. We "SHOULD" have 15 Carrier groups right now that could forward deploy and a tight fleet of long range bombers that can reach out and touch from anywhere but we don't. That is part of the negative of Clinton's Fiscal Conservatism. We are about 3 carrier task forces short.

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post #29 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:43 PM Thread Starter
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Why not leave Japan completely? Why do you believe we still have troops there? How are Americans benefiting from our military presence there?

BTW, no country in the world is paying a higher percentage of our expenses in regard to maintaining local U.S. military bases than Japan.
Japan was just used as a handy example.

I think that we need forward bases and Asia is one of those places that it is needed. Beyond fiscal question of what percentage of expenses are covered by the host country I would not for the most part argue for or against a specific country. There are plenty of countries that we could leave or consolidate our bases.

Why not leave Germany or the UK or Italy?

Why do we need multiple bases in every country in the Union?
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post #30 of 75 (permalink) Old 02-28-2008, 07:48 PM
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Really? Half of you family is in health care and you are for nationalizing it?

A large portion of my family is involved in healthcare as well. I personally know and felt the impact of the healthcare changes enacted under Clinton. I know people in healthcare that were laid off. I know people in healthcare that took pay cuts.

The changes for the worse in healthcare have continued. I have friends and family that have left the industry due to the changes, the increased paper work, the increased BS, the decreased quality of care they can provide. These are changes implemented by gov't agencies not private industry.

If the other half of your family is in analysis you should know how statistics are skewed. The results are different depending on not just the questions asked but the way they are asked. You should know that statistics can be sliced and diced to paint the picture you want to support your point of view.

I have been involved in some of those studies and have seen the BS involved to skew the results.

Have you seen the statisics on the number of people that do not have health insurance because they "do not get sick" and don't want to spend the money. Last couple of times I looked these numbers are no longer published in studies.

Have you seen the statisics on the number of people that "can not afford" health insurance yet have cable TV, and smoke 1 or more packs of cigs a day?

There are so many ways the published numbers are skewed and screwed with it is not even funny. I could continue to list examples but why bother? It will not change the minds of those that feel to gov't needs to protect people from themselves.

This country loves to punish those people that take responsibility for themselves and reward those who do not.
I would be interesting in seeing the studies you quote.

My Sister in Law is an ER Doctor and her husband is a Rehab Doctor. Three others are nurses. They know the system is broken and everyone needs ACCESS to insurance. That is not happening now.

As for skewing numbers, sure that can happen but I have found from about 35 years of systems analysis that the two or three agencies on the planet that you can depend on to provide accurate information are the Census Bureau, BLS and Social Security Administration. While their numbers might be mindnumbingly boring, they are stone cold accurate.

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