Obama’s Speech to cut the Deficit Appeals to Tax and Spend Liberal Base

Posted by PITHOCRATES - April 13th, 2011

Deficits are caused by Tax Breaks, not Spending

President Obama was taking some heat for not being engaged in the budget process.  So he sucked it up.  Put a plan together.  And went on television at the same time the Rush Limbaugh program aired I guess in hopes that people would be listening to Rush instead of his less than inspiring speech (see The Presidential Destroyer posted 4/14/2011 on The Wall Street Journal).

Mr. Obama did not deign to propose an alternative to rival Mr. Ryan’s plan, even as he categorically rejected all its reform ideas, repeatedly vilifying them as un-American. “Their vision is less about reducing the deficit than it is about changing the basic social compact in America,” he said, supposedly pitting “children with autism or Down’s syndrome” against “every millionaire and billionaire in our society.” The President was not attempting to join the debate Mr. Ryan has started, but to close it off just as it begins and annihilate any possibility of good-faith cooperation.

Mr. Obama then packaged his poison in the rhetoric of bipartisanship—which “starts,” he said, “by being honest about what’s causing our deficit.” The speech he chose to deliver was among the most dishonest in decades, even by modern political standards.

Attack the Republicans for being toadies of the rich in their never ending quest to kill children.  Condemn the Republican proposal as being wrong with all knowing condescension without having anything better to offer himself.  Blame the deficits on unfair tax cuts for the rich, not on the explosion in federal spending under his watch.  Same old same old.  Campaign rhetoric.  Forever the candidate.  Wholly uncomfortable in the role of president.

Mr. Obama said that the typical political proposal to rationalize Medicare’s gargantuan liabilities is that it is “just a matter of eliminating waste and abuse.” His own plan is to double down on the program’s price controls and Gosplan-like central planning. All Medicare decisions will be turned over to and routed through an unelected commission created by ObamaCare—which will supposedly ferret out “unnecessary spending.” Is that the same as “waste and abuse”?

Fifteen members will serve on the Independent Payment Advisory Board, all appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate. If per capita costs grow by more than GDP plus 0.5%, this board would get more power, including an automatic budget sequester to enforce its rulings. So 15 Solons sitting in a room with the power of the purse will evidently find ways to control Medicare spending that no one has ever thought of before and that supposedly won’t harm seniors’ care, even as the largest cohort of the baby boom generation retires and starts to collect benefits.

Interesting.  The UK is working on revising their National Health Service (NHS), too.  Which is very similar to what Obama is proposing.  The NHS is a big centralized behemoth.  For now, at least.  You see, the British are doing the opposite of what Obama wants to do.  Because over the great many years of the NHS, they have found that the big centralized behemoth doesn’t work well.  Unless your goal is to have high costs, long waits and a rationing of health care.  And this just begs the question.  If the British couldn’t do it, why in the world would anyone believe that the Obama administration can?

Every U.S. fiscal trouble, he claimed, flows from the Bush tax cuts “for the wealthiest 2%,” conveniently passing over what he euphemistically called his own “series of emergency steps that saved millions of jobs.” Apparently that means the $814 billion stimulus that failed and a new multitrillion-dollar entitlement in ObamaCare that had nothing to do with jobs.

Under the Obama tax plan, the Bush rates would be repealed for the top brackets. Yet the “cost” of extending all the Bush rates in 2011 over 10 years was about $3.7 trillion. Some $3 trillion of that was for everything but the top brackets—and Mr. Obama says he want to extend those rates forever. According to Internal Revenue Service data, the entire taxable income of everyone earning over $100,000 in 2008 was about $1.582 trillion. Even if all these Americans—most of whom are far from wealthy—were taxed at 100%, it wouldn’t cover Mr. Obama’s deficit for this year.

The cost of the Bush tax cuts per year are $370 billion.  The Obama stimulus was $814 billion.  Clearly, just looking at this alone makes the deficit Obama’s fault, not Bush’s.  In fact, Obama added some $4.3 trillion to the national debt in his first two years in office.  That’s $2.15 trillion per year.  Which is greater than $370 billion if my math is right.  In the grand scheme of things the Bush tax cuts are chump change.  But it’ll probably do a lot more to create jobs than that $814 billion waste in spending he called stimulus.

A trillion is a big number.  Taxable income of $1.582 trillion is a lot of money (the sum of income of everyone earning over $100,000).  But it’s still less than what Obama spends.  Damn these rich people.  They’re screwing this president again.  Not only do they not pay their ‘fair’ share in taxes.  They simply don’t earn enough to pay the taxes required to support his extravagant spending.  Even if Obama confiscated all of their income.

The People’s Budget: Governing against the Will of the People

All right, no one expected anything serious today.   Obama doesn’t do that.  He only campaigns.  And there’s an election coming up.  So he sure isn’t going to do anything foolish that might hurt his reelection chances.  Like governing.  And there is a good reason why he’s not trying to get serious with the budget.  Because if people found out what he really wanted to do, no one with a job would vote for him.  Because he’s a tax and spend liberal.  And that’s what he wants to do.  But can’t.  Because of those damn independent voters.  They have jobs.  And the votes that will or will not make him a two-term president.  So he can’t afford to spook them.  Which isn’t pleasing his liberal base.  They’re getting fed up.  They want the liberal they helped to elect.

Making things even more uncomfortable for him, just under half of the House Democrats are as liberal as he is.  And they have put together a budget to counter the Ryan budget.  And it’s a liberal budget.  It shows who they really are.  And what they want to do to America (see The liberals’ plan: Gut defense and tax, tax, tax by Byron York posted 4/11/2011 on The Washington Examiner).

The “People’s Budget” is the liberals’ answer to House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan’s 2012 budget proposal, which is “leading us down a road to ruin,” according to caucus co-chairmen Reps. Raul Grijalva and Keith Ellison. The “People’s Budget,” Grijalva and Ellison claim, would eliminate the deficit in just 10 years (Ryan’s plan would take more than 25 years) while expanding, not cutting, Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security…

How can such fiscal miracles be accomplished? By tax increases that would make even some top Democrats gasp. Perhaps the most extraordinary is the caucus plan to raise the Social Security tax to cover nearly all of a taxpayer’s income…

The caucus would create three new individual tax brackets for the highest incomes, topping out at 47 percent. It would also raise the capital gains tax, the estate tax and corporate taxes. It would create something called a “financial crisis responsibility fee” and a “financial speculation tax.” And of course it would repeal the Bush tax cuts.

As if anyone needed reminding, the “People’s Budget” is proof that the liberal idea of budget balancing is tax, tax, tax. If you’re looking for spending cuts, you’ll find just one really big one: national defense. The liberals would end “overseas contingency operations” — the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — starting in 2013. They would save more money by “reducing strategic capabilities, conventional forces, procurement, and research & development programs.” In other words, they would gut the United States’ ability to defend itself, today and long into the future.

Confiscatory taxes.  And more spending.  The problem with this is if you take away everyone’s wealth no one will want to create wealth.  If the government is going to provide a social utopia, why work?  Why work a 50-60 hour week just so you can pay most of your earnings in taxes?  When you can push a broom and live a comfortable life?  The Romans did just this and they had a problem.  People quit being farmers because the Roman government was taking most of their crops.  So the Romans passed laws putting a stop to this.  That’s right, if you were a farmer you stayed a farmer.  Whether you liked it or not.  And this is how you make confiscatory taxation work.  You make people work against their will.

Of course, Rome had another problem.  Citizens didn’t want to serve in the military anymore.  So they had to rely more and more on hired armies.  Which cost a lot of money.  And when they couldn’t pay them it caused problems.  The mighty Roman legions weren’t so mighty anymore.  And the empire became vulnerable to attack.  And it was.  Attacked.  And, ultimately, conquered.  But that could never happen here.  Because America has no enemies.  And is loved throughout the world.

If the liberals get their way, we may very well go the way of the Roman Empire.  And spend ourselves into oblivion.  Which is what tax and spend liberals do.

What would the liberals spend money on? The “People’s Budget” is essentially a newer and bigger stimulus bill. Grijalva and Ellison pledge to “invest $1.45 trillion in job creation, early childhood, K-12 and special education, quality child care, energy and broadband infrastructure, housing, and research and development,” along with billions more for stimuluslike road and other transportation programs.

Overall, the plan shows the gaping divide between the Progressive Caucus and the Obama White House. Back in his Chicago days, Barack Obama might easily have signed on to something like this. Now, as a president desperate for the support of independent voters in 2012, he can’t.

Yes.  If only if he was back in his good old Chicago days.  Obama would then embrace this budget.  As an activist you can do that sort of thing.  Because activists don’t solve any problems.  They just agitate.  And have fun.  Presidents can’t do that, though.  Sooner or later, they have to govern.  And when you do, you can’t govern against the will of the people.  For the people will reject you.  Especially those independent voters who have jobs.

Hating Republicans:  The Democrat Strategy

So while the Republicans try to address the unsustainable cost of entitlements, Obama and his Democrats are letting them.  While attacking them.  And this will probably carry us through the 2012 election season.  They’re trying to ‘Newt Gingrich‘ the Republicans.  Dance around in useless debate until they can get a ‘wither on a vine‘ sound bite.  Sure, the country will go further down the toilet.  But the more people hate Republicans the better their chances are at the polls.  Which is all they have.  Because their policies ain’t winning them any votes.  At least, not from the people who have jobs.

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