Dimocrats, the high priests in the Church of Obama, along with Barack Obama threaten to make the malicious stereotype about “tax and spend” liberals a reality.
Real Democrats understand the need for fiscal responsibility. Real Democrats remember the recession Bill Clinton inherited and how Bill Clinton restored genuine confidence to consumers and genuine fiscal responsibility by paying the bills on time. Bill Clinton did not waste money as policy nor did Bill Clinton ignore the debilitating effects of endless deficits and growing debt.
After Bill Clinton Republicans could no longer attack Democrats as “tax and spend” wastrels. After Bill Clinton Republicans had to retire attacks on “welfare queens”. Bill Clinton enacted responsible fiscal policy and deprived Republicans of their most useful and effective epithets against Democrats.
Now Republicans are calling back to active service those ugly epithets because they describe the Obama economic “plans” with precision.
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Some Democrats understand the “tax and spend” peril:
Sen. Mary L. Landrieu (D-La.), who represents an oil and gas-producing Louisiana, said she wants to press Obama why he wants to tax independent oil and gas producers in the state.
“I’m going to ask the president how he thinks that increasing substantially taxes on the oil and gas industry help us to achieve our goal of domestic – energy independence of a more robust domestic drilling program. It’s one of the areas where i take strongest issue with the administration.”
“Big Oil is one thing, and i support the oil and gas industry generally. Big Oil can fight its battles. … But independent oil and gas producers which are the backbone of the domestic industry cannot bear the elimination of these tax credits.”
Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.):
“I dont know that i have a lot to ask, i just want to listen to what he has to say. I truly believe we’re going to have to reduce the spending levels significantly. Meaning we’re going to have to shift, create a continuum for a lot of the goals and priorities for more than one budget. Ultimately he’ll have to tell us, OMB will have to tell us . . . How that can happen.”
Senator Conrad is beginning to understand the threat of fiscal irresponsibility even when the fiscal irresponsibility is tax cuts which benefit one favored group but overall destroy the economy and eventually lead to a worse economic position even for that favored group:
Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad emerged from the Dems’ meeting today with President Obama predicting a budget deal soon — but holding firm on his demand that Obama’s $800-per-family tax cut be scrapped in two years if the administration can’t figure out a way to pay for them.
“If they are to be extended, they would have to be offset,” the North Dakota Democrat told reporters in the Capitol.
Obama simply cannot be trusted. Obama cannot be trusted on any issue. Obama cannot be trusted by his friends. Obama cannot be trusted by his enemies. Obama cannot be trusted.
Obama cheerleader E.J. Dionne of the Washington Post today gave away the “tax and spend” scheme under the guise of “truthteller“.
The debate on the budget is phony, the howling on deficits a charade. Few politicians want to acknowledge that if you really are concerned about long-term deficits, you have to support tax increases.
That’s why the most significant moment of President Obama’s news conference on Tuesday was not his dodge of a question on AIG, but his defense of the least popular tax increase in his budget: limits on the benefits wealthier taxpayers get for their charitable contributions and mortgage payments.
Dionne does not understand the lessons of the Bill Clinton presidency. Bill Clinton was not about “tax and spend”. Bill Clinton was about paying your bills and fiscal responsibility. Bill Clinton raised taxes when bills had to be paid. Bill Clinton understood that an honest budget which paid for purchases immediately restored confidence in the recession battered economy. Bill Clinton understood that social progress could come only if fear of job loss or economic insecurity was removed from the American psyche.
Bill Clinton understood that hard working Americans were generous and wanted to help the poor and the weak but they did not want to be taken for saps by the lazy or the rapacious.
Dionne blames the Bill Clinton tax increases, which were instrumental in restoring economic security and confidence to Americans, as the cause of the Democratic losses in 1994. But that is historically dishonest. Democrats lost in 1994 because they fought against Bill Clinton in order to preserve their luxuries in Congress and because of a series of congressional scandals which sent senior Democrats to jail.
Dionne then gets down to business – “tax and spend” Dionne recommends:
Obama himself is only going part of the way on tax increases. He is still arguing that he can fix things with hikes on just the top 5 percent of taxpayers.
He’s right that a large share of any increase should hit those who enjoyed the biggest income gains over the last decade. But in the end, no politician (with the possible exception of libertarian Ron Paul) is willing to cut the budget enough to contain the deficit without a general tax increase down the road.
Every budget analyst knows this, and every politician knows that it’s far easier to bemoan deficits in the abstract than to risk spending cuts or tax increases that hurt sizeable groups of voters. “There are no more low-hanging fruit,” says Tom Kahn, the staff director for the House Budget Committee. “The low-hanging fruit have already been picked. Any tax increase or spending cut is going to trigger opposition from somewhere.”
In an ideal world, Obama would come right out and say we’ll need broad-based tax increases. But that would be suicidal right now. Witness the reaction to his effort to put a 28 percent ceiling on deductions. His proposal would affect only 1.2 percent of taxpayers, yet even that idea is about to die in Congress.
Dionne then debases himself with Orwellian speak of the “war is peace” variety:
The task of those who genuinely care about deficits is to make the world safe for tax increases.
That Dionne advice is a prescription for economic disaster and ignores what really needs to be done (we wrote about what needs to be done in “Stimulus Versus Smart“).
Dionne chooses to ignore the massive waste of money in Obama’s bailouts and “stimulus” scam. That money could have been used for long term investments in healthcare but instead was spent in wasteful projects that create work projects, but not careers, not jobs.
Dionne should at least understand that scandal and waste of trillions of taxpayer dollars will produce a voter backlash. Arlen Spector of Pennsylvania is a backlash example:
The Pennsylvania Republican trails former Rep. Pat Toomey by double digits in the first head-to-head poll of their ensuing primary match-up.
The Quinnipiac poll, released Wednesday, shows the embattled Specter behind Toomey, 41-27, even though 73 percent of Republicans say they don’t know enough about the challenger to form an opinion.
Specter said the poll numbers did not surprise him but that he did expect Toomey to have higher name recognition than the poll demonstrated.[snip]
Specter acknowledged the poll likely reflects the effect of his vote in February for the economic stimulus plan, noting that he was joined by Maine Republicans Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins and very nearly several more. The support of Specter, Snowe and Collins put Democrats over the 60-vote threshold to pass the bill.
“I was not a leader in the negotiations,” he said. “I participated in the very final round-up when we knocked $110 billion off and raised the tax cuts, but the real role I had was providing a critical vote.
“And I understand that. But is that the reason why the Quinnipiac poll is a big problem for me? I think so.”
It echoes a Susquehanna poll from last month that showed 66 percent of GOP voters want someone new and only 26 percent would vote to keep Specter.[snip]
“Pennsylvania Republicans are so unhappy with Sen. Specter’s vote for President Barack Obama’s stimulus package and so-called pork-barrel spending that they are voting for a former congressman they hardly know,” said Clay Richards, assistant director of Quinnipiac’s University Polling Institute.
Spector enabled the Obama “stimulus” scam and now Pennsylvania voters will enable Spector’s retirement from politics.
Many Dimocrats who enabled the Obama “stimulus” scam and bailouts face the same fate as Spector. Some Dimocrats think they are safe because of the alleged popularity of Obama and Obama’s alleged power with the grassroots. These Dimocrats are mistaken:
Organizing for America, the Democratic National Committee-based group that took over for Barack Obama’s prodigious grassroots campaign organization released the results of their weekend canvassing effort in support of Obama’s budget proposal.
The group called on former campaign volunteers to turn out to promote Obama’s budget priorities, and get voters to sign cards pledging their support.
The verdict: More than 100,000 signatures collected at 1,200 events attended by 10,000 volunteers. The group is calling that a strong showing, but let’s do the math.
That means the typical canvassing event was attended by fewer than 9 volunteers who on average, collected 10 signatures each. Not exactly a groundswell.
The Hopium addled are not out in the streets singing hymns and burning incense in praise of Obama. Now, even the dullest Obama enablers are waking up to the Big Pink message that Obama is the Third Bush Term and soon to replace George W. as “worst president ever“.
A month ago, reflecting on George W. Bush’s near-doubling of the national debt, budget hawk David Walker told me that Bush was “the most fiscally irresponsible president in American history.”
This week, reflecting on the possibility that Barack Obama could nearly redouble the debt, Walker said that Bush holds the irresponsibility record “to this point.”
The former Comptroller General and now-president of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation and star of the movie “I.O.U.S.A.,” Walker said it’s too soon to tell whether Obama will match Bush in irresponsibility, but the signs are not encouraging.
“All [Obama’s] words are good” about controlling the debt, he said, “but his budget proposes no transformational changes. His programs are all debt-financed.”
Why does Walker repeat old Big Pink articles?:
Walker said he trusts the Congressional Budget Office’s just-issued estimates of deficits and debt more than those from Obama’s Office of Management and Budget.
The CBO shows the nation’s public debt — not counting borrowing from Social Security and other trust funds — rising from $5.8 trillion to $10.2 trillion by 2014 and $15.1 trillion by 2019.
During the Bush years, it grew from $3.3 trillion in 2001 to $5.8 trillion this year — from 24 percent of gross domestic product to 40.8 percent last year and 56.8 percent this year.
The CBO estimates that Obama will preside over an increase to 71.4 percent during his first term and 82.4 percent by 2019.
And Walker says those numbers understate the true burden of debt on future generations.
When borrowing from trust funds is included, gross federal debt went from $5.8 trillion in 2001 to $12.6 trillion this year.
The CBO did not calculate the gross debt, but Obama’s budget shows it rising to $17.1 trillion in 2013 and $23.1 trillion in 2019. The 2019 figure will be more than 100 percent of the estimated gross domestic product — the largest percentage since just after World War II.
“And in those days,” Walker said, “we owed that debt to ourselves. Now we owe it to foreigners, mainly the Chinese, who are firing shots across our bow that they may not keep acquiring our debt.”
Already, the Federal Reserve is buying U.S. Treasury bills to keep interest rates down. If foreigners refused to buy — as occurred with British debt on Wednesday — interest rates would surge, damaging prospects for economic growth and investment.
Republicans have been charging — almost chanting — that Obama’s budget “spends too much, taxes too much and borrows too much,” but they shamelessly ignore Bush’s irresponsibility and their own, when they were in control of Congress.
We have constantly taken Republicans to task for their irresponsibility and fear mongering and hypocrisy. But now it is Dimocrats who are irresponsible, fear mongers and hypocrites. We agree with those who say that Obama is pushing a credit card economy, in more ways than one.
…you can keep spending and put it on a credit card. That’s what it looks like to me.”
The Obama economy can be summed up as “printing money, which can lead to inflation, a weak dollar and high interest rates.”
Right now, though, “where Bush about doubled the national debt, CBO shows that Obama could be on track to do the same — and at much higher numbers. It’s not a record he should want to repeat.”
Obama is the Third Bush Term – only worse – this time it’s pretend Democrat doing the damage.