Friday, December 10, 2010

Why the Obama Tax Deal Confirms the Republican Worldview

Robert Reich

Apart from its extraordinary cost and regressive tilt, the tax deal negotiated between the president and the Republicans has another fatal flaw.

It confirms the Republican worldview.

Americans want to know what happened to the economy and how to fix it. At least Republicans have a story -- the same one they've been flogging for thirty years. The bad economy is big government's fault and the solution is to shrink government.

But here's the obstacle. As income and wealth have risen to the top, so has political power. Money is being used to bribe politicians and fill the airwaves with misleading ads that block all of this.

In other words, the problem isn't big government. It's power and privilege at the top.

So another part of the solution is to limit the impact of big money on politics. This requires, for example, publicly-financed campaigns, disclosure of all sources of political spending, and resurrection of the fairness doctrine for broadcasters.

Their blood will run in the streets before the Bigs allow that.

Get it? By agreeing to another round of massive tax cuts for the wealthy, the president confirms the Republican story. Cutting taxes on the rich while freezing discretionary spending (which he's also agreed to do) affirms that the underlying problem is big government, and the solution is to shrink government and expect the extra wealth at the top to trickle down to everyone else.

Obama's new tax compromise is not only bad economics; it's also disastrous from the standpoint of educating the public about what has happened and what needs to happen in the future. It reinforces the Republican story and makes mincemeat out of the truthful one Democrats should be telling.

Make me and Fixer Prez and Veep for a day and we'll bring in a few of our peeps and fix this shit. It won't be pretty but it'll work. All we ask is immunity from prosecution for some of what we will do and pre-signed pardons for the rest. One day. K Street will be a smoking pit and McConnell and Boner and all their henchmen will be on what's left of their knees begging this country for forgiveness.

We won't need any "Second Amendment remedies" either. Maybe a coupla airstrikes, but mostly stuff that goes 'thunk' and 'crunch' and is satisfying to use.

The phony christian haters in the next post have made me a little extra angry today. It's time, has been, to kick wingnut ass. Literally.

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