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Monday, May 2, 2011

Stuck in the middle with you

Except for the fact that it was written by one of Reagan's boys, this makes a lot of sense to us:

It is obvious that the nation’s desperate fiscal condition requires higher taxes on the middle class, not just the richest 2 percent. Likewise, entitlement reform requires means-testing the giant Social Security and Medicare programs, not merely squeezing the far smaller safety net in areas like Medicaid and food stamps.

Unfortunately, in proposing tax increases only for the very rich, President Obama has denied the first of these fiscal truths, while Representative Paul D. Ryan, the chairman of the House Budget Committee, has contradicted the second by putting the entire burden of entitlement reform on the poor. The resulting squabble is not only deepening the fiscal stalemate, but also bringing us dangerously close to class war.

The whole thing is well worth reading, here.

Comments (6)

Without even reading the link, that sure sounds like David Stockman -- no reason to take him out to the woodshed on this one.

Too bad that everyone wants a "political" win and not a win for the public.

A very good read.

The middle class are the third rail of politics. I'm tired of the pandering to them at all costs by politicians.

I'd wonder what sensible tax increases across the board + defense budget cuts + entitlement program restructuring would do for the budget and fiscal sanity of the country?

If we had a constitutionally required balanced budget, the political jockeying would be reduced and we would arrive at a Stockman-like solution that much quicker.

Even if we taxed the top 2% at a rate of 100%, that would only get the Federal Government to sometime in May. The rest of the year would be paid with bonds, and the income tax of the other 98%.

And by that, I mean it would be paid with bonds.

The only way out of this mess is to stop with the three wars, cut and restructure entitlements reasonably, increase taxes moderately across the board, do away with subsidies to industries that absolutely do not need them (ethanol, big oil, etc.), and in general, have your average Congress critter pull his / her head out of a dark orifice.

Of course, none of these will actually happen, but we can always hope.

Stockman's mea culpa has been in progress for nearly three decades, starting with his confession in The Atlantic.

A good start in the war on economic terrorism would be to replace Geithner at Treasury with Stockman. Add replacement of AG Eric Holder -- who will never bring discomfort to his once and future Wall St clients -- with Eliot Spitzer and this country's economy may stand a chance of recovery. (Alex Gibney's "Client 9" (2010) provides perspective on Spitzer's private moral lapse, largely misreported by MSM. His mea culpa, too, continues.)

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