Sunday, August 01, 2010

We're supposed to become ditch diggers

Before we look at Jack Kelly’s column today, we need to make sure we are on the same page economics-wise.
Deficits matter (now).
Olympia Snowe, Susan Collins and (then Republican) Arlen Specter had no effect on the stimulus bill, when Harry Reid let them take a chain saw to the Senate version.
Deficits matter (now).
Tax cuts are a “tried and true” method for getting out of recessions past, like uh…. Well, it’s not the way we got out of the great depression, unless we didn’t really get out of it until Eisenhower was elected. And Kennedy cut taxes ….
Deficits matter (now).

Actually, Kelly spends fully a third of his column detailing the tax problems of three Democratic politicians. And you know, fair enough, it looks like all three have done stupid things. Mind you, if you want to talk about whether Geithner should have paid his Medicare and social security taxes while he was at the IMF, then liberal bloggers are going to want to remind everyone about two mishandled wars (at least one unnecessary), deficits, a housing bubble filled with toxic assets, etc.

It is interesting how Kelly advances his argument. He mentions Timothy Geithner didn’t pay the aforementioned taxes, but wants to let the tax cuts on people making $250,000 and up expire (as Congress first agreed to do when it passed the tax cuts, just my two cents). Then Kelly describes what would happen if *all* the tax cuts expired - THE LARGEST TAX RISE IN HISTORY (back to their previous levels). Which would be bad, because that would stall the stalled recovery, in addition to adding revenue to the government (even though deficits matter (now)).

Um, anyway (my head is starting to hurt) apparently generic Republicans repeat their mantra about small businesses being hurt by the three to four percentage points their marginal tax on their income above $250,000 would go up. I suspect these are the same small business men whose families would be turned out on the street if the “death tax” every comes back (those families whose two million dollar plus estate puts them close to the edge of poverty).

Kelly simply assumes the reader agrees that government stimulus doesn't work, and that tax cuts do. Kelly can get away with that because a lot of liberals have turned on Obama, and because Democrats in Congress were possibly counting on Obama to stick his neck out so they wouldn't have to. Now Republicans are incessantly chanting deficit, and Democrats are only whispering in return.

According to Kelly, we have to cut popular programs (read politicians will balk). OK, after we do that (or maybe not), we can raise money by giving away … I mean selling drilling rights, federal land and hydro electric dams (????). I guess the people who slip Kelly an envelope of money each week to shill for them added some extra instructions.

Hmm, in this time of recession, who could afford to buy a hydro electric dam? Who has had record profits in the last few years?

How well will your electric cars compete (you liberals) when the new owners of the dams either raise the price of electricity or simply stop bothering to produce any. Think I am being too paranoid? Enron and the California rolling blackouts.

So at the end of the day, Jack Kelly's column on the danger of deficits is really just a sales pitch to sell America's environment to the energy companies. And we saw how careful they are with the environment just recently in the Gulf.

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