The leaders of the 2 strongest and perhaps the only economically growing members of the European Eurozone announced their intentions to press for all members of the Eurozone to pass balanced budget amendments. France and Germany have pretty much footed the bill for the bailouts of Greece, Italy, and other failing European nations, and intend to prevent the Eurozone members from ever again spending more than they can produce. France and Germany have finally had enough it seems, and with their own economies beginning to show the strain, are going to do their best to force the other member states to live within their means instead of forever asking for bailouts from the 2 stronger Eurozone members.
PARIS — The leaders of France and Germany called Tuesday for greater economic discipline and unity among European nations but declined to take immediate financial measures seen by many investors as the only way to halt the continent’s spiraling debt crisis.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell, the euro slid against the dollar and key European markets edged down in off-hour trading after Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany and French President Nicolas Sarkozy announced the results of their emergency talks in Paris.
Sarkozy called for a “new economic government” for Europe that would meet at least twice a year with European Union President Herman Van Rompuy as its head, but he offered few other details or indications that the body would have real power.
Merkel and Sarkozy also called for all eurozone nations to enact constitutional amendments requiring balanced budgets. They said they want the process completed by the summer of 2012, but it would almost certainly run into protracted political difficulties in many countries.
Washington may not be getting the message yet but, they will. President Obama, Pelosi, Reed and most of the other Spenders in Congress will be coming up for election soon. Most won't survive. Whether it's countries, states, counties, cities or individual, all have to pull their own weight or borrow and beg for money. There's only so much support (money) available. It seems like we have to be hit over the head to figure out you can't keep this up for ever. France and Germany might teach other EuroZone countries to balance their budgets but the question is, are we listening? It doesn't appear that we are.
Posts: 35467 From: Orlando, Florida Registered: Oct 2001
I would think it would be difficult to find anyone happy with politicians in DC, no matter their politics. The country is fed up with both President Obama and Congress. I'm fed up with them. And now? Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is fed up with Washington, too.
Schultz is so done with them, in fact, that he's encouraging people not to give political donations. In other words, instead of talking about your dissatisfaction, put your money with your mouth is -- or rather don't put your money anywhere near Washington, no matter the candidate.
Cut them off. Close those wallets. Hit 'em where it hurts.
According to Schultz, money is the way to get change from political leaders who have "chosen to put partisan and ideological purity over the well being of the people." He told CNNMoney: "All it seems people are interested in is re-election. And that re-election -- the lifeblood of it is fundraising."
Schultz, a Democratic donor who paid out $183,650 almost entirely to Democratic candidates, is recruiting other CEOs and even passed on a letter to the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ stating:
I am asking that all of us forgo political contributions until the Congress and the President return to Washington and deliver a fiscally, disciplined long term debt and deficit plan to the American people.
It seems fair. It seems more than fair.
Why throw good money after bad? The country is a mess. It's hard to find anything good about the economy, and I think it will only get worse until these politicians we elected truly start making very hard cuts and fiscally disciplined choices that will be very unpopular, including entitlement programs such as welfare, Social Security, and the like.
In my household, we are having tough conversations about how to decrease our own debt of school loans, mortgages, and credit card debt. Nowhere in these discussions are we raising "our debt ceiling" by applying for more credit cards or worrying about what the neighbors will think. Instead, we are making the following cuts to our family budget:
Refinancing existing debt? Yes.
My husband taking a risky new job and taking the bus to work to cut gas bills? Yes.
Drastically reducing dining out? Yes.
Cancelling our phone line, Blockbuster, and Netflix accounts? Yes.
What's more, we have a ZERO school clothes budget this year. We are getting creative and reusing last year's school supplies. I am cutting and coloring my own hair and everyone else's hair in our family. We question every grocery purchase.
Most important, living within our means has become our priority. We have become a cash only family the last few weeks. No cash? No buy. And most of the time that means: no buy. We are shrinking our priorities and cutting to the bone. I am sure we are not alone.
We need our politicians to do the same.
Our government has gotten too big and has not figured out the real priorities. Like my family, they've been accustomed to the "buy now and pay later" way of life. But eventually it has to stop.
Not only that, but we elected our lawmakers to lead, not just be re-elected. We need politicians to understand that they may not be popular and may not get re-elected, but they must makes cuts -- not make more debt. It will be the right thing to do. We need politicians that are focused on making change in one term rather than planning careers and starting their re-election campaign only months after elected.
We elected these leaders to do what is good for the country, not what is good for their political party.
Right now, with this debt over our heads, I truly feel our country is in a treacherously precarious situation that not only threatens this generation's well-being, but the future solvency and very existence of our country. Business as usual is not working. We need new blood or at least to exert pressure on the old guard by hitting them where it hurts in their campaign piggy banks until they think about their country more than their re-elections. That's exactly the sentiment behind Schultz's plan to cut off DC where it hurts.
What about you? Have you donated politically in the past and will you now? More important, are you cutting back in your household budgets and do you expect your leaders to do the same?
Washington may not be getting the message yet but, they will. President Obama, Pelosi, Reed and most of the other Spenders in Congress will be coming up for election soon. Most won't survive.
Pelosi and Reid will be reelected. They are pretty much invincible in their home districts, and since their positions aren't national elections, they have nothing to worry about. The TEA Party tried to unseat Reid in the last election, but couldn't do it. Pelosi owns her district.
Posts: 20834 From: Roswell, Georgia Registered: May 2001