Monday night political post

House Speaker John Boehner’s new budget proposal would require deep cuts in the years immediately ahead in Social Security and Medicare benefits for current retirees, the repeal of health reform’s coverage expansions, or wholesale evisceration of basic assistance programs for vulnerable Americans.

The plan is, thus, tantamount to a form of “class warfare.” If enacted, it could well produce the greatest increase in poverty and hardship produced by any law in modern U.S. history.

This may sound hyperbolic, but it is not. The mathematics are inexorable.
Robert Greenstein / the non-partisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities / 2011.07.25

There’s just no arguing with the fact that what we all just witnessed outlined in no uncertain terms the dynamic that’s been going on in Washington for the past several months in regard to the debt ceiling fight. Obama was not only reasonable, measured and — I can’t believe I even have to say this — mature, but he made it clear that he was a man so willing to compromise for the good of the country that he’s consistently fending off fire from many in his own party who feel like he’s somehow selling them out. Boehner, meanwhile, was a petulant, haughty adolescent, someone not the least bit interested in genuine compromise and who’s more than willing to forgo honest dialog in the name of cheap theatrics, bad jokes and brutish partisan intransigence because he knows it’s what his party demands at this point.

I tweeted this a little earlier but it can pretty much be broken down like this: Obama: “We need to compromise and stop being petty children for the sake of everyone.” Boehner: “Fck you.”
Chez Pazienza / Deus Ex Malcontent / 2011.07.25


Teresa Tritch / How the Deficit Got This Big / New York Times / 2011.07.24

Toastie Eliminates the Deficit

The New York Times has a must-see-and-play-with interactive tool for showing how the current deficit and future projected deficits can be managed.

It’s an neat tool to check out because it shows very clearly how some popular targets are really just drops in the bucket, like foreign aid and medical malpractice reform.

Closing the projected 2030 budget shortfall is very difficult unless you start messing with social security. There needs to be someway of raising the retirement age without adversely impacting those who careers rely on their bodies to function adequately. You simply can’t expect sanitation workers and UPS drivers to work until they are 70.

Anyway, I played the game and managed to at least close the 2015 projected shortfall of $418 billion, 3/4 from tax increases and 1/4 from spending cuts:

  • Eliminate farm subsidies – $14B
  • Reduce troops in Iraq and Afghanistan by 30K by 2013 – $86B
  • Obama’s estate tax plan (lower than Clinton’s; higher than nothing) – $24B
  • Obama’s investment tax plan (lower than Clinton’s; higher than nothing) – $10B
  • Expire Bush tax cuts for income above $250K/yr – $54B
  • Expand ceiling for payroll tax – $50B
  • Millionaire’s tax (new top bracket, instead of top bracket starting at $375K) – $50B
  • Convert mortgage-interest deduction to credit (less benefit for high-income hh’s) – $25B
  • Carbon tax – $40B
  • Bank tax – $73B

American Idiot: Deficit Crusader

(h/t Andrew Sullivan’s Daily Dish)


But Obama’s the one screwing over our grandchildren.

Sarah Palin says President Obama’s proposed 2011 budget is “immoral” because it increases the national debt, which she called “generational theft.”

Palin told the national “tea party” convention Saturday that America’s national debt, which is held largely by other nations, “makes us less free” and “should tick us off.”

By the way, the largest state debt-to-GDP-ration? Former half-governor Palin’s Alaska.

When the former vice presidential candidate resigned as governor of Alaska in the summer of 2009, she left the state with a 70 percent debt-to-GDP ratio — the highest state debt burden in the United States.