That scary budget deficit! The one that scares the hell out of Pick’n Save lady. What can we possibly do about it?
Republicans say they care about it, but they don’t. The Bush tax cuts blew an enormous hole in the federal budget going forward but they aren’t even willing to entertain the idea that we might, at some point, let some of them expire as planned.
They are, however, willing to kill Medicare and instead give seniors coupons to buy private health insurance. They are willing to raise the eligibility age for Social Security and lower its benefits. Strangely, they aren’t willing to cut military spending, though.
Need I remind you of which presidents presided over which periods of deficit growth and shrinkage? Need I remind you of what Dick Cheney famously said about deficits? No. They don’t truly care about deficits. They just use it as a bludgeon to attack spending they don’t like. Citizens who care about fiscal responsibility should really think twice before ever voting for these guys.
Hey, here’s an idea. Why don’t you fix the deficit? You can (at least for pretend) with this Budget Puzzle page at the NY Times. I know it’s from 2010, but it’s still a hoot. I got the feds back in the black in nothing flat just by clicking 12 boxes. And at a 65/35-ish ratio of spending cuts to tax increases. Try it!
When elected Republicans say they are deeply worried about the deficit, they are lying. They just like to use that bogeyman to bludgeon liberal priorities. They do not give a rats ass about the deficit.
Provide health care for 9/11 responders with lingering health issues? Insanity! We have to control this deficit, you know!
Extend jobless benefits in the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression? Good heavens no! The deficit!
Extend Bush’s tax cuts for millionaires even though it would add far more to the deficit? We must! And pass the Grey Poupon while you’re at it, there’s a good fellow.
Lying. Like I said.
When congress debated extending jobless benefits during the most severe economic crisis since the Great Depression, they did a lot of fretting and handwringing over whether it would add to the deficit. When congress is faced with extending Bush’s tax cuts for the wealthy instead of letting them expire as written, however, the GOP had no such concerns–despite the fact that they add a whole lot more to the deficit than jobless benefits do.
Let us dispense with the notion that letting those tax cuts expire will increase taxes on small businesses, because they won’t. And let us also remember that some of the soberest–and Republicanest–minds in American economics have come out and admitted that extending them would be disastrous.
It’s hard not to wonder whether the GOP cares more about Donald Trump’s tax bill than it does about millions of unemployed Americans.