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Monday, February 11, 2013

Griper Blade: The GOP plan to preserve the job market status quo

Comic demonstrates folly of trickle-down
Steve Benen brings up a damned good point, as he so often does. In writing about Republicans and the sequestration fight, he points out the the GOP blaming Obama for the sequestration plan is BS and that a major party talking point makes no sense.
...Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who appears to spend more time on Sunday shows than in the Senate, said he's open to some revenues as a way to replace the sequester, but added, "[W]e have raised taxes. Why do we have to raise taxes again?" Of course, by that logic, there's no reason not to ask, "We have cut spending. Why do we have to cut spending again?"
The question behind these questions is "what future are you preparing for?" See, it works like this: right now, a major driver of our deficits is unemployment. Employment has been rising, but joblessness is still a major problem. If government is running higher than normal deficits, while cutting spending, it's because there's a revenue shortage caused by all these people out there without income. Contrary to what rightwing hacks tell you, we don't have a spending problem. The problem is that a large chunk the tax base has shrunk. If you were to cut spending to match this shrunken tax base, that would mean you're preparing for a future where these levels of unemployment are the new normal. After all, cutting spending means cutting demand, which in turn means unemployment. Republicans like to say that it's a bad idea to raise taxes in a recovering economy, but the truth is that it's a much, much worse idea to cut spending when economic times are tight -- which is what Republicans always seem to want to do in their panicky, reactionary little hearts. The plane isn't actually crashing -- we've cleared that danger, it's just some turbulence now -- but Republicans in their reactionary fervor want to tear out seats, jettison luggage, and throw a few stewardesses out the hatch to lighten the load. What Republicans are doing here is literally cheerleading economic panic, in order to score some cheap political points with the few remaining nutjobs still willing to vote for them...[CLICK TO READ FULL POST]

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