Friday, July 11, 2008

The Beast Drops the Second Shoe

No one outside the policy loop ever believed me when I said that the Republicans were amassing federal deficits on purpose to, as Reagan budget David Stockman director said, "starve the beast" of government spending on social programs. Now there's a debate on how to cut social spending even when Bush is gone!

If you don't believe me, just go to the Brookings Institution's Taking Back our Fiscal Future page and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities' A Balanced Approach to Restoring Fiscal Responsibility page, just up this week. You'll see a debate by the wonkiest wonks on how to trim slash every social program currently funded by the federal government, especially Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

Reagan ran up more debt than all his predecessors put together and his spiritual son Dubya gave money to rich people who didn't need it with a purpose in mind: to make sure that if you face illness, old age, job loss and related risks that predictably all of us are likely to face in a lifetime, and you are not rich, you're on your own, baby, no matter how much you contributed.

Need proof Reagan and Bush actually knew what they were doing?
  • "So we have the tax relief plan [...] that now provides a new kind -- a fiscal straightjacket for Congress. And that's good for the taxpayers, and it's incredibly positive news if you're worried about a federal government that has been growing at a dramatic pace over the past eight years and it has been." (President Bush, August 24, 2001)

  • "John Anderson tells us that first we've got to reduce spending before we can reduce taxes. Well, if you've got a kid that's extravagant, you can lecture him all you want to about his extravagance. Or you can cut his allowance and achieve the same end much quicker." (Candidate Ronald Reagan in 1980)
The "extravagance" is never military spending or subsidies to corporations or giveaways to rich farmers and stockmarket magnates. No, it's taking food out of infants and pregnant women abandoned to survive on their own.

Now you know and you can't say no one told you.


Hendaque said...

The question is will the Democratic congress and executive repair the damage?

Diane said...

I learned something reading this blog and this is about a subject that effects the whole nation (and then I guess the world). So as a neighbor that may run into you ocasionally and probably won't for a while, I wanted to make sure you knew how much I appreciated this particular blog because it was not only thought provoking but educational in my case.
I guess the next step is to figure out how to get this message out, so that more people will understand how we were mislead.