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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012


After endless blather and delay the Republicans have finally served up a budget proposal: Son of Ryan.

The latest GOP plan repeats the tired old canard of trimming Medicare and Social Security to salvage tax cuts on the richest one percent. It is as if the November election had never happened.

The major difference between this plan and the one that House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan proposed last year is that it has been test-driven -- both by Senate and the American voters. And it is a lemon that can't move.

The new Republican version retains the Bush tax cuts in their entirety. It also calls for a change in the way inflation is calculated so that Social Security benefits rise more slowly in the future. Last I looked, folks in the upper ends of the tax table don't rely on Social Security to put food on the table and pay the heating bills.

The proposed Republican savings in Medicare and Social Security will cost recipients more than they will save the federal budget. They do not come close to closing loopholes created by such yawning entitlements as subsidies for large agriculture firms and oil and gas subsidies.

Even Erskine Bowles, one of the co-authors of the plan (the commission member Paul Ryan rejected) is calling out Boehner over his assertion the GOP plan is similar to their roadmap.
“It will be necessary for both sides to move beyond their opening positions.”
The essential point of the Republican proposal is the failed argument that tax cuts for the rich will spur "job creators" to do their thing. The clear evidence from the now 10-plus year history of these cuts is well Bushwa.

Take it back 20 more years beyond that and it's clear the most significant period of economic growth was when Bill Clinton raised the marginal rates on that top tax brackets.

The Republican tax cuts for growth mantra has a clear record over 30 years: it does not work, Or in the words of a different Bush, they are "voo-doo economics."

It's time for some serious reality lessons for Boehner's bunch.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

To claim that the reason Clinton enjoyed a growth economy was based solely on his higher tax rates is to ignore the luck he had in the economic growth associated with the internet. His reign was at the right time and the right place. It would be equivalent to saying tax policies in place at the time were the reasons the economies were good around the time the railroads and then the automobiles were introduced.

December 04, 2012 9:19 AM  

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