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dbucfan

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« #15 : March 17, 2013, 02:19:11 PM »

Re defense spending - there is literally trillions committed to new ships and planes that will continue to push US technology 5xs further ahead of the rest of the world.  I would offer JG? aptly stated - when is enough more than enough. 

On the other hand - slashing spending in a recession/recovery/current economy would have an impact on employment/unemployment/barry's ability to blame others. 

\"A Great Coach has to have a Patient Wife, A Loyal Dog, and a Great Quarterback. . . . but not necessarily in that order\" ~ Coach Bud Grant

VinBucFan

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« #16 : March 17, 2013, 02:24:40 PM »

There is a ton of fat to trim and I am for trimming it all until we get to some level of basic fiscal responsibility

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John Galt?

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« #17 : March 20, 2013, 12:02:17 PM »

It doesn't really matter what you call it. Recession. Recovery. Whatever. It's not a good thing to slash spending in the current economy. I happen to agree on the points made in the thread about the cuts, except for the whole characterization of the National Parks cuts. A few less solar toilets is quite the bogus understatement.


Not an understatement, but a satirical reference to what SHOULD be done.

The Solar Bathroom Story:

I was visiting my parents at a (not a National Park but) a Corp. of Engineers Park maybe a 150 acres, there are thousands of these around the country. At the park they were building new restrooms and a sign explained in flowery verse all the great advantages of this new "wonder restroom" like solar heated water, solar panels to power the lights, low volume/water saving toilets, etc. etc. and at the bottom, in tiny print was the cost projects- $265,000. $265k for a pair of bathrooms?????? A neighboring camper remarked that he was a commercial contractor and he could have done the job for UNDER $100k.

So how many thousands of similar "small" projects are 2X-3X times overpriced??

The problem is there is plenty of waste and cuts that can be made without eliminating programs or cutting jobs. Instead of buying $5 pens for federal office workers just make do with $0.99 Bics. 50 million pens/yr and you saved $200 million (ok I made those numbers up, but most will get the point). Instead of $300 ergonomic office chairs, get some $60 Office Depot specials. Or how about reducing the number of "inspection tours" by mid-level bureaucrats? What does the Under-Secretary of Interior's tour of all our National Parks accomplish other than burning a ton of fuel and racking up hotel bills?? Why does the Deputy Director of Subsidized Housing need to be at a ribbon cutting ceremony in Cheyenne?   

For Profit businesses can often cut expenses by 10%-20% w/o cutting a single job, why can't our Federal Govt. do the same???


CBWx2

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« #18 : March 20, 2013, 12:38:58 PM »

It doesn't really matter what you call it. Recession. Recovery. Whatever. It's not a good thing to slash spending in the current economy. I happen to agree on the points made in the thread about the cuts, except for the whole characterization of the National Parks cuts. A few less solar toilets is quite the bogus understatement.


Not an understatement, but a satirical reference to what SHOULD be done.

The Solar Bathroom Story:

I was visiting my parents at a (not a National Park but) a Corp. of Engineers Park maybe a 150 acres, there are thousands of these around the country. At the park they were building new restrooms and a sign explained in flowery verse all the great advantages of this new "wonder restroom" like solar heated water, solar panels to power the lights, low volume/water saving toilets, etc. etc. and at the bottom, in tiny print was the cost projects- $265,000. $265k for a pair of bathrooms?????? A neighboring camper remarked that he was a commercial contractor and he could have done the job for UNDER $100k.

So how many thousands of similar "small" projects are 2X-3X times overpriced??

The problem is there is plenty of waste and cuts that can be made without eliminating programs or cutting jobs. Instead of buying $5 pens for federal office workers just make do with $0.99 Bics. 50 million pens/yr and you saved $200 million (ok I made those numbers up, but most will get the point). Instead of $300 ergonomic office chairs, get some $60 Office Depot specials. Or how about reducing the number of "inspection tours" by mid-level bureaucrats? What does the Under-Secretary of Interior's tour of all our National Parks accomplish other than burning a ton of fuel and racking up hotel bills?? Why does the Deputy Director of Subsidized Housing need to be at a ribbon cutting ceremony in Cheyenne?   

For Profit businesses can often cut expenses by 10%-20% w/o cutting a single job, why can't our Federal Govt. do the same???

I don't disagree, but we are talking about 1 time expenses vs. yearly operating costs. The national parks are already or have already addressed the issue in the way that you are suggesting. It's not as though the parks started off with hiring freezes and staff reduction as a means of cutting costs. Employee trips and office supplies have already been squeezed from the budget, and they are still finding themselves having to do more to be in budgetary compliance.

Maybe the contractor could have done the job for a 3rd of the cost, maybe he was just blowing smoke up your ass. Who knows. But the parks are hurting this year, and will be dragging down local businesses with them. Cheaper pens isn't going to fix that.


spartan

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« #19 : March 20, 2013, 02:22:50 PM »

The reality of sequestration is it means smaller increases real not cuts. So, I find hard to believe that anybody is hurting. Plus it has been in effect for less than 3 weeks. If things are that bad it doesn't say much for their organization and planning.

Last but not least, the above is indicative of the problem. Everybody is encouraged to spend their whole budget or they lose it. Not only that, but they lose it from next year as well. The end result is stupid crap like that so the budget gets spent.

CBWx2

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« #20 : March 20, 2013, 03:05:39 PM »

The reality of sequestration is it means smaller increases real not cuts. So, I find hard to believe that anybody is hurting. Plus it has been in effect for less than 3 weeks. If things are that bad it doesn't say much for their organization and planning.

These parks were already preparing for cuts, spartan. The sequester is an additional cut on top of the cuts that they were already preparing to absorb. And they are planning. That's what we are talking about here. Their organizational planning entails cutting staff, hours of operation, maintenance, etc to adhere to the budget cuts. That's typically how one plans for these type of cuts. No amount of organizational planning in the world is going to allow for a national park to be able to operate at full functionality while absorbing a 1.06 million dollar budget cut.


spartan

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« #21 : March 20, 2013, 04:13:54 PM »

What parks etc are you talking about? The National Park Service has a $3 billion budget. Either your numbers are wrong, we are talking about different things or their cuts are a pittance.

CBWx2

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« #22 : March 20, 2013, 10:19:03 PM »

What parks etc are you talking about? The National Park Service has a $3 billion budget. Either your numbers are wrong, we are talking about different things or their cuts are a pittance.

Quote
For Grand Canyon National Park Superintendent David Uberuaga, cutting access to the park was not an option — even as he had to find $1.06 million to drop from the budget.

“We have less supplies, less equipment, less travel, less overtime and yet the public demand has never been higher,” Uberuaga told ABC News Tuesday. And in his opinion, the sacrifices the park is making should not stop visitors from coming.

Uberuaga struggled to keep cuts internal, taking away all employee recognition awards before reducing services. Now visitors might notice restrooms smelling riper, the visitors’ center closing earlier than it normally would in summer and longer lines to ask rangers questions.

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2013/03/sequester-squeeze-delays-openings-cuts-campgrounds-at-national-parks/



John Galt?

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« #23 : March 21, 2013, 12:31:24 PM »

What parks etc are you talking about? The National Park Service has a $3 billion budget. Either your numbers are wrong, we are talking about different things or their cuts are a pittance.

Quote
For Grand Canyon National Park Superintendent David Uberuaga, cutting access to the park was not an option — even as he had to find $1.06 million to drop from the budget.

“We have less supplies, less equipment, less travel, less overtime and yet the public demand has never been higher,” Uberuaga told ABC News Tuesday. And in his opinion, the sacrifices the park is making should not stop visitors from coming.

Uberuaga struggled to keep cuts internal, taking away all employee recognition awards before reducing services. Now visitors might notice restrooms smelling riper, the visitors’ center closing earlier than it normally would in summer and longer lines to ask rangers questions.

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2013/03/sequester-squeeze-delays-openings-cuts-campgrounds-at-national-parks/

Seems like the solution is obvious to a private sector person. In the private sector, if demand has never been higher and you are running at full capacity, you raise your prices. So charge more for park admittance. That park had 4.3 million visitors last year http://www.nps.gov/grca/parkmgmt/upload/2012grcaProfile.pdf so if you raise admittance fees by JUST $1.00/PERSON there is an extra $4.3 million. That is $3 million more than was cut. I doubt raising entrance fees from $25/vehicle to $30 will make even a tiny dent in visitation or demand.

Unfortunately some Harry Reid or **CENSORED** Durbin will make the usual Liberal Rant about how raising fees is TAXING THE POOR or some crap


VinBucFan

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« #24 : March 21, 2013, 03:22:19 PM »

What parks etc are you talking about? The National Park Service has a $3 billion budget. Either your numbers are wrong, we are talking about different things or their cuts are a pittance.

Quote
For Grand Canyon National Park Superintendent David Uberuaga, cutting access to the park was not an option — even as he had to find $1.06 million to drop from the budget.

“We have less supplies, less equipment, less travel, less overtime and yet the public demand has never been higher,” Uberuaga told ABC News Tuesday. And in his opinion, the sacrifices the park is making should not stop visitors from coming.

Uberuaga struggled to keep cuts internal, taking away all employee recognition awards before reducing services. Now visitors might notice restrooms smelling riper, the visitors’ center closing earlier than it normally would in summer and longer lines to ask rangers questions.

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2013/03/sequester-squeeze-delays-openings-cuts-campgrounds-at-national-parks/

Seems like the solution is obvious to a private sector person. In the private sector, if demand has never been higher and you are running at full capacity, you raise your prices. So charge more for park admittance. That park had 4.3 million visitors last year http://www.nps.gov/grca/parkmgmt/upload/2012grcaProfile.pdf so if you raise admittance fees by JUST $1.00/PERSON there is an extra $4.3 million. That is $3 million more than was cut. I doubt raising entrance fees from $25/vehicle to $30 will make even a tiny dent in visitation or demand.

Unfortunately some Harry Reid or **CENSORED** Durbin will make the usual Liberal Rant about how raising fees is TAXING THE POOR or some crap

+1

Show the bravest of the brave kids that you have their back.  Go to http://www.childrenscancercenter.org/

Just check out the site or maybe like them on Facebook . .  or Share the site on Facebook, re-tweet one of their tweets.  Not everyone can give money to support this great cause, but its easy to give 10 seconds of your time to help spread the word about The Children\'s Cancer Center

dbucfan

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« #25 : March 22, 2013, 10:52:41 PM »

I believe user fees discriminate and are exclusionary in nature. 

Okay - I don't .. but it was fun to say...

\"A Great Coach has to have a Patient Wife, A Loyal Dog, and a Great Quarterback. . . . but not necessarily in that order\" ~ Coach Bud Grant

VinBucFan

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« #26 : March 22, 2013, 11:37:17 PM »

I believe user fees discriminate and are exclusionary in nature. 

Okay - I don't .. but it was fun to say...

LOL

Show the bravest of the brave kids that you have their back.  Go to http://www.childrenscancercenter.org/

Just check out the site or maybe like them on Facebook . .  or Share the site on Facebook, re-tweet one of their tweets.  Not everyone can give money to support this great cause, but its easy to give 10 seconds of your time to help spread the word about The Children\'s Cancer Center

CBWx2

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« #27 : March 23, 2013, 12:13:34 PM »

What parks etc are you talking about? The National Park Service has a $3 billion budget. Either your numbers are wrong, we are talking about different things or their cuts are a pittance.

Quote
For Grand Canyon National Park Superintendent David Uberuaga, cutting access to the park was not an option — even as he had to find $1.06 million to drop from the budget.

“We have less supplies, less equipment, less travel, less overtime and yet the public demand has never been higher,” Uberuaga told ABC News Tuesday. And in his opinion, the sacrifices the park is making should not stop visitors from coming.

Uberuaga struggled to keep cuts internal, taking away all employee recognition awards before reducing services. Now visitors might notice restrooms smelling riper, the visitors’ center closing earlier than it normally would in summer and longer lines to ask rangers questions.

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2013/03/sequester-squeeze-delays-openings-cuts-campgrounds-at-national-parks/

Seems like the solution is obvious to a private sector person. In the private sector, if demand has never been higher and you are running at full capacity, you raise your prices. So charge more for park admittance. That park had 4.3 million visitors last year http://www.nps.gov/grca/parkmgmt/upload/2012grcaProfile.pdf so if you raise admittance fees by JUST $1.00/PERSON there is an extra $4.3 million. That is $3 million more than was cut. I doubt raising entrance fees from $25/vehicle to $30 will make even a tiny dent in visitation or demand.

Unfortunately some Harry Reid or **CENSORED** Durbin will make the usual Liberal Rant about how raising fees is TAXING THE POOR or some crap

Actually, the reason that this wouldn't work is because the revenues taken in by national parks goes into the general revenue fund, and then the parks receive their funds through appropriations, just like any other government funded institution. I do, however, think that you are on to something. Perhaps the park system could be restructured to keep their revenues for funding, and then any additional revenue could be transferred to the general fund. No one ever said that government couldn't be improved, especially this one.


Runole

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« #28 : March 23, 2013, 01:27:11 PM »

It is rather obvious that only purpose of sequester and its totally arbitrary nature of its cuts is to try and make the public believe it can't live without big government controlling their freedom and lives from the cradle to the grave.    The recent lack of funding for Towers at some seldom used airstrips?   Planes landed on the strips for years without needing federally funded landing towers.  Flying 101.  It absolutely sickens me this country elected the worst president in US history to a second term.  All because those that don't pay any taxes can continue to get their free lunch, get paid to have babies, and live off the back of the working class that actually pays taxes.

John Galt?

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« #29 : March 27, 2013, 03:15:27 PM »

What parks etc are you talking about? The National Park Service has a $3 billion budget. Either your numbers are wrong, we are talking about different things or their cuts are a pittance.

Quote
For Grand Canyon National Park Superintendent David Uberuaga, cutting access to the park was not an option — even as he had to find $1.06 million to drop from the budget.

“We have less supplies, less equipment, less travel, less overtime and yet the public demand has never been higher,” Uberuaga told ABC News Tuesday. And in his opinion, the sacrifices the park is making should not stop visitors from coming.

Uberuaga struggled to keep cuts internal, taking away all employee recognition awards before reducing services. Now visitors might notice restrooms smelling riper, the visitors’ center closing earlier than it normally would in summer and longer lines to ask rangers questions.

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2013/03/sequester-squeeze-delays-openings-cuts-campgrounds-at-national-parks/

Seems like the solution is obvious to a private sector person. In the private sector, if demand has never been higher and you are running at full capacity, you raise your prices. So charge more for park admittance. That park had 4.3 million visitors last year http://www.nps.gov/grca/parkmgmt/upload/2012grcaProfile.pdf so if you raise admittance fees by JUST $1.00/PERSON there is an extra $4.3 million. That is $3 million more than was cut. I doubt raising entrance fees from $25/vehicle to $30 will make even a tiny dent in visitation or demand.

Unfortunately some Harry Reid or **CENSORED** Durbin will make the usual Liberal Rant about how raising fees is TAXING THE POOR or some crap

Actually, the reason that this wouldn't work is because the revenues taken in by national parks goes into the general revenue fund, and then the parks receive their funds through appropriations, just like any other government funded institution. I do, however, think that you are on to something. Perhaps the park system could be restructured to keep their revenues for funding, and then any additional revenue could be transferred to the general fund. No one ever said that government couldn't be improved, especially this one.


How about restructuring the entire Federal Bureaucracy and the entire Budget??

1. Social Security should ABSOLUTELY be independent and NOT part of the budget. All FICA taxes go in to a separate fund, all SS payments come out, the balance is invested.
2. Medicare/caid should also be separate. Payroll taxes go in to a separate fund, payments come out of the same fund and if and when there is a deficit, then Congress funds that-after debate!!
3 Not just National Parks but any program that has significant fee or tax revenue should be operated as a separate entity with fees and taxes going into the account and costs coming out and IF and only IF there is a deficit, then Congress can debate funding that.

This would reduce the budget to Military and Foreign Aid, Food and Housing aid programs like SNAP (food stamps), Education, DoT, and a few others and greatly reduce the size of the Govt.

It was done with the Post Office and it worked. Now do it with a few thousand other programs. 

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