When will the insanity end?

September 4, 2011

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Sources

Responses:

 

Since my last regular monthly column in May I have learned how easy it is to tune out the politics of Washington and Lansing. Their antics drive us crazy. I can no longer stay silent however.

            It has been said that insanity is repeating the same activity and expecting different results. The right wing has been leading us on a “borrow and spend” policy since it was initiated by President Ronald Reagan in 1981. The fruits of that policy are now oppressing us. Yet the Republicans repeat the same old lines: 1) taxes are evil and must be cut at all costs, 2) government is too large and must be made smaller regardless of consequences, and 3) the national debt is out of control. They fail to admit they created the spending and national debt by their tax policies.

Taxes and jobs

            The Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 gave little to the average American but millionaires are paying 25% less today than ten years ago. In 2009 nearly 1500 millionaires paid no income tax at all. While these tax cuts were promoted as job creating, they actually cost 3 million jobs by 2008. The GOP still talks of tax cuts as the panacea for job creation but since the extension of the tax cuts in late 2010 another 1.9 million jobs have been lost even though Republicans campaigned on the slogan “more jobs” and have done nothing to provide jobs.

They say they want to cut corporate taxes, because our high tax rates make American businesses uncompetitive in the world market. How then could oil companies have the highest profits of any company in the world at a time of economic crisis? How could General Electric have profits of $14.2 billion in 2010 and pay no income tax?

Smaller government

            The right wing wants to end Social Security because, as an economist on CNN on August 6 said, the greatest cause of federal deficits is the Social Security and Medicare payments. Social Security payments are made from a trust fund that was created by all the Social Security (FICA) taxes we have paid since the 1930’s. There is more in the fund than the payments going out. This statement by the economist was an outright lie or ignorance at best. To end Social Security would be the greatest breach of government trust in our history.

Republican spending cuts do not include ending corporate welfare however. When the Democrats proposed ending subsidies to oil companies, the GOP defeated this bill because they agreed with oil company executives who characterized the cuts as a tax increase, even though the big five oil companies had $35.4 billion in profits in the second quarter 2011.

            The Republican government spending cuts are “job-killing” measures. It is estimated that if the Republicans get their way more than 5 million jobs will be lost by the end of 2012.

National debt

            The national debt increased from $1 trillion in 1981 when Reagan became president to $10.6 trillion in 2008 at the end of the George W. Bush presidency. Only $1 trillion of that $9.6 trillion increase was under the Democrat Bill Clinton. In fact Clinton had a balanced budget and was paying down the debt when he left office in 2001.

The big increase in the debt was the result of President George W. Bush’s policies. The tax cuts cost $1.6 trillion in lost revenue and created additional interest costs of $1.4 trillion. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan cost $1.3 trillion. The 2003 creation of Medicare's prescription drug benefit added $300 billion and the 2008 financial industry bailout added $200 billion.

            The government has always been a partner with the business world. This is especially true during difficult economic times. This latest recession is no exception. The Obama economic stimulus package added $800 billion and the 2010 compromise tax cuts  added $400 billion. The staggering national debt is not an Obama creation.

            The latest debacle created by the right wing is the draconian compromise regarding increasing the debt limit. Even the conservative icons, the US Chamber of Commerce and Standard and Poor’s, criticized the GOP for not allowing tax increases on the table.

            President Obama should have held the line in late 2010 and allowed the tax cuts of Bush to end. And now in this current debacle he should have vetoed any bill to increase the debt ceiling, which had draconian spending cuts without tax increases. We would be far better off today if he had done that. but the bulk of the blame  rests on the shoulders of the GOP for their intransigence and rigid ideology.

Come the next election, we need new leaders to rebuild the American dream that is being destroyed by the right wing politicians and their supporters.

 

                       

Sources:

“No Jobs For You! (Says The GOP)”, Think Progress August 5, 2011 http://thinkprogress.org/progress-report/no-jobs-for-you-says-the-gop/

Millionaires paying 25% less

 

“Wanted: John Mica, Job Killer”, Think Progress, August 3, 2011

http://thinkprogress.org/progress-report/wanted-john-mica-job-killer/

oil profits

“job killing” government spending cuts

 

“Big Oil Hits a Gusher:, Think Progress July 28, 2011

http://thinkprogress.org/progress-report/big-oil-hits-a-gusher/

$35.4 billion  profits big five oil companies second quarter 2011

 

Russell Berman , “Boehner: Scrap oil subsidies only in broader corporate tax cut”, 05/12/11  http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/677-e2-wire/160849-boehner-scrap-oil-subsidies-only-in-broader-corporate-tax-cut August 9, 2011.

 

U.S. keeps bond rating, but Moody's assigns negative outlook”, Detroit Free Press, August 3, 2011.

http://www.freep.com/article/20110803/NEWS15/108030415/U-S-keeps-bond-rating-but-Moody-s-assigns-negative-outlook?odyssey=tab%7Cmostpopular%7Ctext%7CFRONTPAGE

 

GE profits

By JAKE TAPPER (@jaketapper)

, March 25, 2011

 

Millionaires pay no taxes

“… but the IRS reported last week that in 2009, nearly 1,500 millionaires paid no income taxes at all. “

Think Progress August 11, 2011

 

ABC News “General Electric Paid No Federal Taxes in 2010”, August 15, 2011

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/general-electric-paid-federal-taxes-2010/story?id=13224558

 

 

Responses:

9/4/11

Your  article about how right wing has cost us to be in debt I think is missing one major thing. They have created the deficit deliberately so they could force their idealology of eliminating entitlement programs to come to bear. Think about that. Are the right wing capable of deliberately causing this to con the people into believing it's the democrats fault. Your damn right they are. And it all started with their savior Reagan. He did show them the way of cutting taxes to create a deficit and also showed them Union busting. Sound familiar. The right wing are so power hungry that can't see the damage they are doing to the economy and this country. I have been predicting for years that this country is headed for another civil war. I know that is more and more a possibillity I will probably live to see it happen. So much for the United States being the greatest country in the world.