Sequestration 2013: With Cuts In Place, Obama And GOP Brace For Next Fight.
To all my readers, I find it important for everyone to inform themselves about the actual sequester with an official document sent to Congress as a direct result of Congress and the President’s inability to reach a decision to avoid the sequester that has now gone into effect on March 1. There is a lot of misinformation going around through various groups so I decided that the actual facts might be nice, then let you the reader decide what is truth. Since both parties the President and Congress refuse to come to a decision on Saturday to avoid sequester, we as a country now face the consequences through automatic spending cuts of $85 billion. Even with last minutes talks and no deal, the sequester which is outline in the official document below has gone into effect with the stroke of Obama’s pen. There are no signs that either group will budge as the Republican refuse any deal with more taxes and Democrats will not do a deal without it. Both parties lay the blame on the other for damages the cuts might inflict which are across the board. In the words of Obama on his weekly radio and internet address, “None of this is necessary…It’s happening because Republicans in Congress chose this outcome over closing a single wasteful tax loophole that helps reduce the deficit.” The president also commented that the cuts will cause ripples across the economy the longer they stay in place and could cost more than 750,000 jobs not to mention disrupt the lives of middle class families. The next major battle for both will be to negotiate a plan to fund the government beyond March 27 or possibly face a government shutdown and another debt ceiling clash in May.
This will be an end of an era for Cuba and a new beginning hopefully between the U.S. and Cuba if Raul Castro does actually retire. In Havana on Friday, Cuban president shocked everyone by announcing he may leave his post saying he is old and has the right to retire, but did not announce when the move would be made. On Sunday, he will be named by parliament to a new five year term and Castro urges reporters to listen to his speech. He announced the news while at a joint appearance with visiting Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev with a huge smile on his face making it hard for people to tell if he was joking. Castro explained,”I am going to be 82 years old. I have the right to retire, don’t you think?” When reporters tried to ask him further what he meant, Castro told them to stop questioning his decision and listen to his speech on Sunday. The tone of his comments were light and informal at the mausoleum dedication to soldiers from the former Soviet Union who died around the world. The Cuban leader has alluded to the desire to implement a two term limit for all Cuban government positions including the presidency as well as his limited time to overhaul the weak Marxist economy. Many have made the conclusion that this upcoming term will be his last even though no term limits exist in Cuban law. No remarks or comments have come from Washington yet.
Most Havana residents who did not know of Castro’s comments were skeptical none the less about his retirement. Castro will be 86 when his term is up in 2018 and most people right now are more focused on who will be his first and second vice president during Sundays proceedings. The positions as of now are taken by two loyal octogenarians who fought in the 1959 revolution. If Castro puts someone younger into one of these positions then for most it would be sign that he was positioning that person to be his next generation successor something he and his brother Fidel never have done. In his December 2010 year end speech to lawmakers, Castro explained that,”The time we have left is short, the task is enormous…I think we have an obligation … to set (the country) on the right course.” When an if Raul Castro leaves the political arena, it would end the more than half a century rule of two brothers who came to power in 1959 against U.S. backed strongman Fulgencio Batista. Armando Gutierrez, a 78 year old Cuban American in Florida and 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion vet, said he hopes Castro was serious about retiring but doubts his successor will bring true political change.
Relations with the United States have been sour since the revolution as one of the key provisions of the 51 year U.S. economic embargo on Cuba states that the embargo cannot be lifted until the Castros are no longer in power. Since taking over for Fidel who is 86 and retired, Raul Castro has made a series of economic and social reform policy, however the island is still ruled by one party. The elder brother also met with the Russian prime minister according to Cuban state run media and the Communist party paper Granma reports the two countries signed an agreement to restructure $20 billion in Soviet era debt Cuba owes. The debt has been a sore point for both countries over the years as it originally was built up in rubles to pay for Soviet services in the 1980s leaving Cuba to question how much it is worth today.
This is by far my favorite picture of the billionaire. He may look a little funny here, but when it comes to politics I completely agree with the man. Even though billionaire investor, Warren Buffett believes Obama’s biggest issue will be Congress, he still is confident that the country will overcome the poor decision-making of lawmakers. I could not help but laugh at this comment he made to CBS News in a recent interview,”What is right about America just totally dwarfs what’s wrong with Washington.” It is so scary and true that I cannot help but laugh at it. During the fiscal debate, Buffett encouraged Republicans to put country before party in order to reach a deal and prevent a $1.2 trillion automatic tax hike and spending cuts. Luckily, a last minute decision was reached and crisis averted for now. Why is Buffett not president? He makes a lot of great points, but I will chalk it up to the super rich not caring for his proposals to raise taxes on the super rich that would make them pay higher rates than the Middle Class which is the way it should be. As Buffett eloquently said, the debt itself is not a problem and it is not a goof thing it going up in relation to GDP. According to the Bipartisan Policy Center, if the Republicans only raise the nation’s debt ceiling in exchange for major spending cuts and does nothing, then the U.S. will not be able to meet its financial obligations by mid-February.
I’m sure his parents are so proud. Yes it is our favorite president again you know him as George W. Bush I know him as 4 years too late. Him and his bright ideas again. You have to watch this video and tell me what you think.