Standard & Poor downgrades US credit: now AA+ not AAA

Standard & Poor just downgraded America’s credit from AAA to AA+. No, this is not the End of the World as We Know It, though obviously there will be some consequences, and I’d like to see some opinions and views as to how this is going to affect not only America’s economy but the global economy as well.

But mainly I’d like to ask the lefties on this board: Do you believe that America can take on unlimited debt? Standard & Poor obviously doesn’t think so, and while US treasury bonds are still considered the safest investment around, there does seem to be a growing perception around the world that our pile of debt is becoming unstable. Yet the Democrats and the left in general have fiercely resisted any meaningful cuts in federal spending as though there was not one cent (except maybe for military spending) that could be cut from the federal budget without causing national and global economic disaster. It was painfully obvious during the recent budget standoff in Congress that many Congress critters (admittedly of both parties) were simply protecting their politically crucial pork barrels while using a lot of pious rhetoric to cover up their corruption.

So, how much debt is too much debt? And, other than tax increases, how do lefties propose to deal with the problem of massive public debt? Is there no point at which the financial cost of some program that you advocate outweighs whatever benefits it may provide, assuming there are actually any benefits whatsoever? Or do you believe that our debt is somehow not a real problem?

Yes, I know there’s been a lot of scare talk about our debt among righties, but even so I have to insist that over the long term the United States is in serious trouble. Tax hikes will have to be part of the solution, which won’t please righties at all, but they’re only a part. Sooner or later the United States will have to make serious and painful cuts in federal spending, and the longer we wait the more painful the cuts will be. How do you propose to make those cuts?

I am not trying to be confrontational here. I’m not baiting you. But all too often it seems to me that the left thinks America has unlimited wealth which you may spend as you please without regard to practical consequences.


And of course the downgrade has nothing to do with the Republicans taking the national and world economy hostage. And the debt has nothing to do with the insane spending of the Republicans and their mania for low taxes at any cost. Frankly it should have been downgraded long ago, a country that lets such lunatics and incompetents as the Republicans into positions of power is not a good long term bet for economic or any other kind of stability.

I’m not seeing this as a signal that our debt is too large for our GDP so much as a consequence of telling the world that the chance of a U.S. default is non-zero. And we have the Republicans to thank for that, for choosing to play politics with our global economic reputation.

There was no reason to create this debt ceiling crisis. None. And now we’re all going to pay the price…

I think the only logical solution is to dissolve Medicare and Social Security, then lower taxes.

It’s currently only one of three. So I doubt that it will have huge effects yet.

You’re not correct. The Democrats are offering to cut quite a bit. Unlike the Republicans, the Democrats also want to increase revenue.

With huge cuts. You should take some time to go over the last few weeks in the news. The Democrats had the largest deficit reduction on the table.

Republicans don’t think it’s a real problem. Because they aren’t willing to raise taxes to cut it.

Remove the Bush tax cuts, pull back the wars and stimulate us out of recession. As it happens that will nearly balance the budget.

Republicans are responsible for the vast majority of the current deficit. Not listening to them would be the best thing we as a country could do.

And they are going to create it again, and again, and again. And quite possibly deliberately force a default on top of it.

No need to guess. The statement from S&P says it explicitly.

The OP is a pretty boring list of strawmen.

As to the practical consequences, I suspect they’ll be pretty close to nil. S&P was last seen rating Mortgage Tranches as AAA, and its not like they have any information on the worthiness of Treasury Bills that the rest of the market doesn’t. I can’t really picturing their opinion changing anyones mind about the creditworthiness of the US, one way or the other.

:rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :dubious:

Sorry, Der. The idea that Republicans and conservatives are entirely responsible for our debt crisis just won’t fly.

I want to accept your assertion that you want to be non-confrontational but…

Really?? Do you really think everybody who styles himself as Left Of Center think that the national debt is paid with Monopoly money? Do you think The Left ™ has absolutely no understanding whatsoever of economics? That they’re a bunch of overage, tied-dyed, granola-eating hippies living in communes and listening to the Grateful Dead? :smack:

Nobody I know of, styling himself a liberal or even a moderate, has, to my knowledge, said that the federal government should not cut any spending at all. The debate centers around as much a) where to cut as b) how much to cut.

I agree with you there. Everybody who’s trying to cut the pork off the other guy’s pet barrel has their own sacred bacon Not To Be Touched. Other than completely outlawing lobbying, I don’t see a way out of that, do you?

Entirely, no. Overwhelmingly, yes. And unlike the Democrats, the Republicans are deliberately making it worse with lunacy like the debt ceiling hostage taking.

According to the S + P, who actually did the downgrading:

In other words, the Republican’s rhetoric and willingness to use our debt as a bargaining chip has resulted in our credit downgrading.

Your point of view lonesomePolecat, that Democrats’ intransigence on spending, a view that does not reflect the facts, is linked to our credit issues is completely wrong. The linchpin to all these relationships is the Republicans and their desire to make cuts that will never happen, pass legislation that will never leave the House, and threaten our economic standing to make a symbolic point. They are avoiding governance and making noise. Real leaders raise taxes when its needed and make 4 trillion dollars worth of cuts. Pseudo leaders and politicians with the mentality of internet trolls pass Balanced Budget legislation when default is a real possibility.

Sure, and when the old people starve to death, our national health care costs will bottom out too since they’re the ones using the most and most expensive of it. With potential savings like this how can this not win?
Other than people not wanting old people to starve, that is.

The US government owes 45% of its debt to itself. That’s 3.85 trillion dollars right there. It could be declared out of existence as easily as it was declared into existence.

The problem however is that the entire US economy runs on debt. Without debt, no one can buy a house or a car or afford education. No one could afford health care. No one could buy anything without saving up the money first. Debt is the fuel of the US economy and it is never going away.

I don’t understand the fear of debt. It’s arbitrary and meaningless. Are all the holders of treasury bonds going to come calling at once? Is China going to build the world’s biggest tugboat and tow Manhattan Island to the other side of the world?

Remember a story from a few years ago of how some jerk phoned a McDonalds pretending to be a cop and convinced a girl to strip naked and do all kinds of embarrassing things because of the empty threat that this “cop” was going to come down there and make everyone’s life miserable? That’s what the Republicans are doing to the United States right now. They have created this problem and the atmosphere of fear that surrounds it. Give it some thought and you will realize that at the end of the day it has no impact on you whatsoever. Give it some more thought and you may come to realize that you need not buy into the fear created by artificial crises and those who seek to benefit politically from them.

Listen, you wanna make an omelet…

This is a serious failure of the Obama Administration. 2008 showed us that these agencies were willing to issue AAA ratings if they stood to make enough money in the process. Obama was clearly supposed to slip S&P an extra tenner and totally missed the cues. That’s what happens when socialists are allowed to be President.

So in other words, death panels.

it appears that most are calling s&p out on a math error that was first offered as a reason for the downgrade.

then s&p went with the political reason for a downgrade.

it seems they were as stubborn about downgrading as some members of congress were for not raising a debt ceiling.

if the downgrade was for a fiscal reason it would be taken quite a bit more seriously.

the fact that it appears to be for a political reason, well, hopefully it will knock some sense into some people should they think about holding the credit of the usa hostage again.

although from some of the statements coming out now… i’m not sure the lesson has been learned.

and now, now! romney has something to say about this? where was he again this past week or so?

by the by pimco had downgraded the us mid july. so it isn’t just s&p.

The idea that anyone could NOT see that it’s the republicans fault is laughable. Clinton gave you your first surplus in decades, the debt was going DOWN. Shrub (Bush Junior) blew it all in the first year of office and started you down this current path, and then his tax cuts finished the job.

And then the republicans showed the rest of the world they would risk default just to make a political point. So yeah, I blame that pretty squarely on the GOP. Your OP is a joke.

As someone not affiliated with either party, I have to say that the Dems have certainly been the saner of the two in recent years. Republicans, under Bush, went on a wild spending spree. When they had their chance to redeem themselves in 2010 with an upset election, they go off the deep end pretending like the debt ceiling is something you fuck around with-- like it’s related to money we’re going to spend in the future. And with their obsession with abortion laws, Sharia, and whatnot, they don’t seem to be taking governing seriously.

We used to say that the Dems never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity, but I think the Pubbies have them beaten at that game now.

Americans will have to work it off.

I think removing their source of income and medical care would allow social darwinism to off them without spending money to form any fancy death panels.