Fiscal Cliff nonsense from the Right

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NorthReport
Fiscal Cliff nonsense from the Right

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NorthReport

America didn’t vote for a “grand bargain”

Listen up, Democrats: Obama didn't win by promising a compromise entitlement reform. He won despite it

 

NorthReport
NorthReport
NorthReport

The coming debt battle

Citing a phony "crisis," the GOP wants to gut Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. Democrats can't let them

In the tense run-up to Hurricane Sandy, I clicked on one of those headlines that appears on the right side of the screen: “Civilization May Not Survive This, Economist Says.”

Once there, I knew I’d been had.  It was about … the public debt. It cited one Lawrence Kotlikoff of Boston University, one of America’s most talented artificers, who “estimates the true fiscal gap is $211 trillion when unfunded entitlements like Social Security and Medicare are included.” Compared to that, what’s a thousand mile-wide hurricane?

That the looming debt and deficit crisis is fake is something that, by now, even the most dim member of Congress must know.  The combination of hysterical rhetoric, small armies of lobbyists and pundits, and the proliferation of billionaire-backed front groups with names like the “Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget” is not a novelty in Washington. It happens whenever Big Money wants something badly enough.

Big Money has been gunning for Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid for decades – since the beginning of Social Security in 1935. The motives are partly financial: As one scholar once put it to me, the payroll tax is the “Mississippi of cash flows.” Anything that diverts part of it into private funds and insurance premiums is a meal ticket for the elite of the predator state.

And the campaign is also partly political. The fact is, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are the main way ordinary Americans connect to their federal government, except in wars and disasters.  They have made a vast change in family life, unburdening the young of their parents and ensuring that every working person contributes whether they have parents, dependents, survivors or disabled of their own to look after. These programs do this work seamlessly, for next to nothing; their managers earn civil service salaries and the checks arrive on time. For the private competition, this is intolerable; the model is a threat to free markets and must be destroyed.

This attitude is reflected in the nonsense of media discourse, nicely illustrated in October’s vice-presidential debate, moderated by Martha Raddatz of ABC News:

NorthReport
NorthReport

Now we know what Romney was going to do on Day One - repeal ObamaCare, what has Obama done for his supporters on Day One!

http://theweek.com/article/index/236117/uncovered-mitt-romneys-president...

 

NorthReport

Conservative Media Lie To Conservatives Because That's What Conservatives Want

http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2012/11/conservative-media-mitt-romney-l...

On Election Night, I tweeted that Republicans shocked about Mitt Romney's loss Tuesday should be angry at a conservative media that misled them about the former Massachusetts' governor's chances. 

In the waning days of the race, much of this manifested in raising doubts about the polls and comical exaggerations about the possibility of a Romney landslide. Rush Limbaugh told his millions of listeners that "everything except the polls points to a Romney landslide," but the problem went beyond mavens like Limbaugh to afflict more well-regarded political analysts like Michael Barone and George Will. The Weekly Standard's Jay Cost wrote, "I am not willing to take polls at face value anymore. I am more interested in connecting the polls to history and the long-run structure of American politics, and when I do that I see a Romney victory." Analysts like Karl Rove—who through his stewardship of outside spending groups had a clear financial interest in giving upbeat assessments of Romney's chances—were given prominent perches to hoodwink the viewers of Fox News and the readers of the Wall Street Journal. And as Media Matters' Simon Maloy documents, Jennifer Rubin, the Washington Post's pro-Romney blogger, expressed a far less sanguine view of campaign events after the election than she did when she covered them in real time

The problem goes beyond the conservative media, however—even Republican-leaning pollsters like Rasmussen and Gravis Marketing proved poor predictors of the final outcome, while results from some Democratic-leaning firms like Public Policy Polling were actually closer to the final result than traditional powerhouses like Gallup.

All this has reopened the debate about "epistemic closure," the term libertarian writer Julian Sanchez used* to describe the closed universe from which conservatives receive their information, in which those who deviate from the official party line are deemed apostates who are to be excommunicated. Erik Kain, writing at Mother Jones, says this is in part a business model: "There's big money in controversy, and controversy is what the Glenn Becks of the world do best."

NorthReport
NorthReport

Let's not make a deal

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/09/opinion/krugman-lets-not-make-a-deal.h...

My answer is, not far at all. Mr. Obama should hang tough, declaring himself willing, if necessary, to hold his ground even at the cost of letting his opponents inflict damage on a still-shaky economy. And this is definitely no time to negotiate a “grand bargain” on the budget that snatches defeat from the jaws of victory.

In saying this, I don’t mean to minimize the very real economic dangers posed by the so-called fiscal cliff that is looming at the end of this year if the two parties can’t reach a deal. Both the Bush-era tax cuts and the Obama administration’s payroll tax cut are set to expire, even as automatic spending cuts in defense and elsewhere kick in thanks to the deal struck after the 2011 confrontation over the debt ceiling. And the looming combination of tax increases and spending cuts looks easily large enough to push America back into recession.

Nobody wants to see that happen. Yet it may happen all the same, and Mr. Obama has to be willing to let it happen if necessary.

Why? Because Republicans are trying, for the third time since he took office, to use economic blackmail to achieve a goal they lack the votes to achieve through the normal legislative process. In particular, they want to extend the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, even though the nation can’t afford to make those tax cuts permanent and the public believes that taxes on the rich should go up — and they’re threatening to block any deal on anything else unless they get their way. So they are, in effect, threatening to tank the economy unless their demands are met.

Mr. Obama essentially surrendered in the face of similar tactics at the end of 2010, extending low taxes on the rich for two more years. He made significant concessions again in 2011, when Republicans threatened to create financial chaos by refusing to raise the debt ceiling. And the current potential crisis is the legacy of those past concessions.

Well, this has to stop — unless we want hostage-taking, the threat of making the nation ungovernable, to become a standard part of our political process.

So what should he do? Just say no, and go over the cliff if necessary.

It’s worth pointing out that the fiscal cliff isn’t really a cliff. It’s not like the debt-ceiling confrontation, where terrible things might well have happened right away if the deadline had been missed. This time, nothing very bad will happen to the economy if agreement isn’t reached until a few weeks or even a few months into 2013. So there’s time to bargain.

More important, however, is the point that a stalemate would hurt Republican backers, corporate donors in particular, every bit as much as it hurt the rest of the country. As the risk of severe economic damage grew, Republicans would face intense pressure to cut a deal after all.

Meanwhile, the president is in a far stronger position than in previous confrontations. I don’t place much stock in talk of “mandates,” but Mr. Obama did win re-election with a populist campaign, so he can plausibly claim that Republicans are defying the will of the American people. And he just won his big election and is, therefore, far better placed than before to weather any political blowback from economic troubles — especially when it would be so obvious that these troubles were being deliberately inflicted by the G.O.P. in a last-ditch attempt to defend the privileges of the 1 percent.

Most of all, standing up to hostage-taking is the right thing to do for the health of America’s political system.

So stand your ground, Mr. President, and don’t give in to threats. No deal is better than a bad deal.

 

 

NDPP

Flaherty Says He Won't Stand By' if Shock Pushes Canada into Recession

http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/canada/flaherty-says-us-fiscal-cliff-li...

"...Finance Minister Jim Flaherty and Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney both pledged Wednesday to take action to support the economy if a shock from the US or Europe, threatened to once again plunge the country into recession. 'We are a pragmatic, sensible government. If our economy goes into recession because of an external shock from the United States or the Eurozone, or both, we will take steps to support the economy...

What we have done before we will do again..."

LOL! What a sick joke! Neocon Jim and Goldman Sachs killer squd Carney  are going to drain you dry, rob you blind and the crooked media will have you begging for them to 'water the wine' and do it to you one more time...especially if the ndp cheerleading squad is rah rah rahing for it too. Can't say they didn't warn you, eh?

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

What % of taxes do you Canadians pay up there?

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Bec.De.Corbin wrote:

What % of taxes do you Canadians pay up there?

Hard question to answer because the provinces all have their own income and corporate tax rates on top of the federal ones. As well we also have various versions of the HST and GST depending on  the province as well as the property taxes that municipalities rely on to run our cities.  BC also has its own gas tax on top of the federal taxes paid.

The short answer is there is no "Canadian" tax rate.

6079_Smith_W
NorthReport

Will Wall Street be punished?

The bankers are whining big-time. Their favorite son lost, and their chief enemy won. Here's what needs to happen

 

Bacchus

Bec.De.Corbin wrote:

What % of taxes do you Canadians pay up there?

 

The figure I have seen in studies published in the newspaper is that Americans keep 70% of their income after taxes and Canadians 69%

Bacchus

Bec.De.Corbin wrote:

What % of taxes do you Canadians pay up there?

 

The figure I have seen in studies published in the newspaper is that Americans keep 70% of their income after taxes and Canadians 69%

Slumberjack

I think many Canadians whine about income tax levels and sales tax, but they don't tend to view taxation in general as a particular type of socialist tyranny enforced by UN troops recruited from the Muslim communities of Kenya.  In Canada income tax was first conceived as a temporary measure to pay our way through the First World War.  In actuality, this form of taxation was born to support tyranny, and has remained loyal to this endeavour ever since.

NorthReport

Canada's revenue agency rates are quite misleading as many people in the upper income brackets get all sorts of tax loophole deductions such as dividend revenue, capital gains, etc.

It is all a massive con job on the less priviledged in our society. 

NorthReport

So it is going to be another rich against the poor battle. We all know how this will turn out.

Get ready for an economic game of chicken

Democrats want to raise taxes for the rich, while Republicans would extend breaks another year. Which party blinks?

 

Fidel

It's all scripted. Obamacrats are so totally owned by the financial oligarchy that it isn't even funny anymore. The one percent will continue attacking labour unions and become even richer as a result. And if anyone talks the truth, they will be labelled as inciting class war. The USA is headed for neofeudalism if they arebn't already there.

China and even state-capitalist Russia are probably more democratic.

jas

NorthReport wrote:
That the looming debt and deficit crisis is fake is something that, by now, even the most dim member of Congress must know.  

The debt isn't fake, but it certainly wasn't caused by medicare.

Brown University: Costs of Iraq and Afghanistan Wars  

"How has the U.S. paid for the wars so far? The United States paid for past wars by raising taxes and or selling war bonds.  The current wars were paid for almost entirely by borrowing. This borrowing has raised the U.S. budget deficit, increased the national debt, and had other macroeconomic effects, such as raising interest rates. The U.S. must also pay interest on the borrowed money. The interest paid on Pentagon spending alone, so far (from 2001 through FY 2011) is about $185.4 billion in constant dollars."

NorthReport

Can a federal insurance program go bankrupt? Of course it can’t. Bankruptcy is a legal process for private citizens seeking relief from unpayable debts. How can the obligations of Social Security or Medicare ever be unpayable? These are public programs, not private companies. All the federal government has to do is to write the checks, pursuant to law. As for the size of the checks, it will be whatever Congress prescribes at any given time. Bankruptcy as a concept does not apply. So what are they talking about?  Lies and nonsense, nothing more.

Less easy to penetrate is the thick swamp of dogma thrown up by the economists who have provided a background chorus for the doomsayers.  Kotlikoff’s $211 trillion is a nice example of this: the net present value of a discounted stream of projected federal deficits over (one suspects) an infinite future time horizon.  Or maybe only 75 years or so.  But who’s counting? It’s a big, big number, and the man spreading it about is a credentialed professor.  Must mean something, surely?

No, it does not.  For one thing, any such number needs to be placed in context – what fraction of total GDP, over the same horizon, are we talking about? That GDP number will be 10 to 20 times larger, so Kotlikoff’s forecast doesn’t tell you anything you didn’t already know, by looking at present deficits in relation to present GDP.

Even that comparison misses the real point, which is that all balance sheets are double-entry propositions. Assuming it’s a real number, and not made up, that $211 trillion liability must correspond, to the penny, to an asset. And that’s the gain in expected future net financial wealth of the private sector, also discounted. Every one of those dollars, after all, corresponds to a bond, which will be owned by a person, a company or a bank. Big crisis? Not at all. At best, it’s a curiosity calculation, of no practical importance.

Even worse, because more immediately read and followed by policymakers, are the Congressional Budget Office’s baseline economic projections.  These combine mutually impossible events, leading to the prediction that the debt/GDP ratio will rise toward 300 percent of GDP by mid-century, while real growth and inflation chug along at 3 and 2 percent, respectively.  But if this were possible, why should anyone care?  In fact it’s not possible; the CBO’s deficits are driven mainly by assumptions about healthcare costs and interest rates that cannot happen. Healthcare cannot rise indefinitely as a share of GDP (and may have already stopped rising). And if interest rates returned to what CBO thinks of as normal the underlying economy would collapse. Luckily for us, the Federal Reserve won’t do that. CBO should revise its assumptions;  if it did, the scare forecasts would go away.

Do we have budget problems? Yes: We spend too much on military hardware and wars; the talent, materials and technologies that go into that are wasted and cannot be used, say, to protect New York from storm surge. Our rich build too many mansions, thanks to their CEO incomes and their low tax rates;  letting the Bush tax cuts expire will usefully dent that purchasing power.

But Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid impose no such future burdens. They are transfers in current time. They meet today’s commitments to seniors, survivors, dependents, the disabled and the ill – commitments they have earned through work – providing them with income and services at the expense of others also currently alive.  This any community can always do, to the full extent of its will and resources. The future has nothing to do with it.  Except that, from a moral point of view, it’s useful for the young to learn that we are a community, in which working people take care of those who can’t.

And that is what the Objectivists in Congress cannot stand. Our sense of community is an obstacle to their power.  And what they are determined to destroy, we must defend.  There is much more to be said, about disaster relief, food assistance, housing and other threatened programs.  But to begin, Congress should leave Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid alone.

http://www.salon.com/2012/11/08/the_coming_debt_battle/

NorthReport

What’s driving inequality?

Technology and education, says Timothy Noah.

But unemployment and the rules governing wages may matter more.

jas

Salon.com wrote:
Do we have budget problems? Yes: We spend too much on military hardware and wars; the talent, materials and technologies that go into that are wasted and cannot be used, say, to protect New York from storm surge. 

Bit of an understatement.

If you go by the Brown University study's estimates, and this is just for Iraq and Afghanistan, a rough averaging over the ten years produces these figures:

$4,000,000,000,000.00 ($4 trillion) spent over 10 years

$400,000,000,000.00 ($400 billion) spent per year

$33,333,333,333.00 ($33 billion) spent per month

$1,111,111,111.00 ($1 billion) spent per day

 

If you go with the conservative estimate, which is the simple total of military budget allocations for Iraq and Afghanistan, you come up with these figures:

$1,380,000,000,000.00 ($1.38 trillion) over the decade

$138,000,000,000.00 ($138 billion) in a year

$11,500,000,000.00 ($11.5 billion) in a month

$383,333,333.00 ($383 million) per day

 

NorthReport

What if we tried some novel ideas - such as imposing just a simple 10% inheritance tax, remove all tax loopholes, tax all income at fixed graduated levels so that there really is some balance and fairness in the tax system, have full employment and decent wages, benefits, and good and portable pensions for all as a goal, and stop any kind of government funding of anything other than the public school system?  And let's go back and make employers pay for training for their employees, etc.

NorthReport

Come on Obama, let's start taxing Wall Street, the people who created the fiscal cliff to begin with.

NorthReport

Well worth a read - as according to the author Obama needs to do nothing before next year

 

 

http://nymag.com/news/politics/elections-2012/obama-romney-economic-plan...

Ryan1812 Ryan1812's picture

NDPP wrote:

Flaherty Says He Won't Stand By' if Shock Pushes Canada into Recession

http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/canada/flaherty-says-us-fiscal-cliff-li...

"...Finance Minister Jim Flaherty and Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney both pledged Wednesday to take action to support the economy if a shock from the US or Europe, threatened to once again plunge the country into recession. 'We are a pragmatic, sensible government. If our economy goes into recession because of an external shock from the United States or the Eurozone, or both, we will take steps to support the economy...

What we have done before we will do again..."

LOL! What a sick joke! Neocon Jim and Goldman Sachs killer squd Carney  are going to drain you dry, rob you blind and the crooked media will have you begging for them to 'water the wine' and do it to you one more time...especially if the ndp cheerleading squad is rah rah rahing for it too. Can't say they didn't warn you, eh?

Ok, so call me new, but it seems to me that Flaherty and Carney committing to stabilizing the economy should it get a shock from the States or Europe is a good thing. Is it not? The first people to be hurt in such a crisis, should prices rise as one would expect they would, will be consumers. One must also consider those on a low income who have already been given the shaft by multiple provincial governments and the federal government. So, stability is a good thing, no?

NDPP

Sure, but let us see who gets paid and with whose money at whose expense...

 

Obama Spells Out Austerity Agenda for Second Term

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2012/nov2012/elec-n10.shtml

"...Whatever the ultimate form of the deal worked out by Obama and the Republicans, both parties are agreed on implementing trillions of dollars in cuts to social spending on Medicare, Medicaid, Social Services, and reworking the tax code to increase the tax burden on a majority of the population while lowering it on the very rich.."

NDPP

Obamacare Creates Perverse Incentives for Employers to Cut Hours

http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org/2012/11/welcome-to-part-time-natio...

"...If you are a full time non-salaried employee in a company with 49 or more full time employees, your employer may be inclined to cut your working time in an effort to avoid the cost of Obamacare penalties..."

NorthReport

How Bill Kristol could split the GOP in two

The influential conservative's call for a tax hike on the rich risks re-launching the GOP civil war of 1990

NorthReport

What's Going On With The Fiscal Cliff?

Why we're not really going to fall off a cliff on January 1 and everything else you need to know about the upcoming budget talks.

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/11/whats-happening-fiscal-cliff...

Where did this whole "fiscal cliff" metaphor come from, anyway?

It's the handiwork of Fed chairman Ben Bernanke, the same guy who warned us about a "global savings glut" in 2005. In testimony before Congress earlier this year, he said that although it was a good idea to get deficits under control in the long term, it would be a bad idea to raise taxes and slash spending right away:

You also have to protect the recovery in the near term. Under current law, on January 1, 2013, there's going to be a massive fiscal cliff of large spending cuts and tax increases. I hope that Congress will look at that and figure out ways to achieve the same long-run fiscal improvement without having it all happen at one date.

I didn't realize Bernanke was such a colorful phrasemaker. So what's the deal with January 1, 2013?

Remember the lame duck session of Congress after the 2010 midterm elections? President Obama cut a deal with Congress that extended the Bush tax cuts, established several miscellaneous tax credits, put in place a payroll tax holiday, and extended unemployment benefits. However, all of these things expire on January 1, 2013.

But that's not all! Remember the debt ceiling fiasco in 2011? At the last second, President Obama cut a deal with Congress to raise the debt ceiling, but the price he paid was a big set of spending cuts that would automatically take effect unless Congress figured out a way to do something different. Congress failed, of course, which means all those spending cuts will happen on January 1, 2013. There are a few other items too, including some new Obamacare taxes that take effect, but this accounts for most of it.

So when you add it all up, what's the price tag for this stuff?

That's where things get a little tricky. The whole "fiscal cliff" metaphor is specifically designed to sound super scary, but it's really kind of misleading. Here are two different ways of looking at it:

  • The "fiscal cliff" way: On January 1, about $400 billion in tax increases and $200 billion in spending cuts will take effect. That's $600 billion, or 4 percent of GDP, and that would be a huge drag on the economy.
  • The "fiscal staircase" way: On January 1, total spending cuts and tax increases of about $1.6 billion will take effect. On January 2, another $1.6 billion. On January 3, another $1.6 billion. Etc.

You see? We're not really going to fall off a cliff on January 1. The cumulative effect of all this stuff will be pretty small for the first few weeks. It's only if it drags on forever that we really feel the hit.

 

josh

Let the Bush tax cuts expire. Go back to the rates of 2000.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Boehner has made it clear he will not support higher taxes, period.

NorthReport

I believe that is the plan.

josh wrote:
Let the Bush tax cuts expire. Go back to the rates of 2000.

NorthReport

As Obama has already said he plans to go over the head of the Congressional obstructionists and communicate directly with the American people.

The House Speaker is trapped as he is caught between Tea Partiers and what the people want - he will cave.

Don't forget the entire House is up for re-election in just 2 years.

Boom Boom wrote:

Boehner has made it clear he will not support higher taxes, period.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Obama does have the upper hand, seeing as he has the White House, the Senate, and won the popular vote as well as running off entirely with the electoral college. Smile

NorthReport

When Clinton raised taxes on the rich the economy soared.

When Bush lowered taxes on the rich the economy tanked.

josh

Boom Boom wrote:

Boehner has made it clear he will not support higher taxes, period.

Doesn't matter what he does or doesn't support. They expire on their own.

NorthReport

Everything you need to know about the fiscal cliff

Everything you wanted to know about the coming crisis but were too embarrassed to ask

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

josh wrote:
Let the Bush tax cuts expire. Go back to the rates of 2000.

This... It is not a tax hike, its what we should have been paying in the first place.

NorthReport

Fiscal Cliff? Not So Much.

Call It a Fiscal Obstacle Course.

Remarkably little will come of the much-hyped fiscal cliff.

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/11/fiscal-cliff-congress

----

 

Let's move this over to the fiscal cliff nonsense thread where it belongs

 

jerrym wrote:

 

 

theleftyinvestor wrote:

 

 

NorthReport wrote:

 

If the NDP was supporting Obama, then let's get on with it and tax the rich in Canada too.

Yes, Democrats are in the power position thanks to both the election and the simple fact that if they just do nothing, all the Bush tax cuts will automatically expire in 2013.

 

 

Yabbut the 2013 expiration will also instigate an automatic round of massive spending cuts that the Democrats don't actually want. This is part of the debt ceiling deal they made last year. It'll also trigger middle-class tax increases that run against Obama's message. So no they are not in the power position.

 

 

Those who are truly not in the power position in the US because of the financial cliff are the poor because many of the payments that support them from month to month disappear on January 1st if the country goes over the cliff. Its one thing if your tax payments go up if you are rich or even middle class, quite another if the money you depend on to survive on disappears.

 

 

 

NorthReport

This fiscal cliff nonsense is a polltical issue which will be solved politically.

America is behind you, Mr. President

http://www.northjersey.com/news/opinions/ejdionne_111312.html

NorthReport

Republican supporter William Kristol, Editor of the Weekly Standard, says that the GOP will cave in to the newly re-elected Democratic president, who won both the electoral college and a majority of the popular vote, and who also has more seats than before in both the Senate and the House.

Kristol says the GOP will cave due to the unfairness in the system

 

NorthReport

Are Republicans caving in on raising taxes?

In the wake of President Obama's decisive victory on Election Day, the GOP appears to be buckling at the knees when it comes to its anti-tax position

http://theweek.com/article/index/236275/are-republicans-caving-in-on-rai...

In another sign that the GOP is wavering, William Kristol, the influential editor of The Weekly Standard, admitted what liberals have long contended: "You know what?" Kristol told Fox News. "It won't kill the country if we raise taxes a little bit on millionaires." Is the GOP caving on raising taxes?

Yes. Republican opposition is crumbling: "For the first time in the Obama presidency, cracks have appeared in the wall of total opposition that has defined the Republican Party's approach," says Jonathan Chait at New York. "An Obama [victory] was always going to have enormous sway." Combine that with the possibility that all the Bush tax cuts could expire, and Republicans have created a "situation where Republican refusal to agree to a small or medium-sized tax hike would mean a huge tax hike." It's possible that GOP leaders could ignite a Tea Party revolt, but "at this early date, the basic Republican strategy toward Obama appears to be in flux." 
"Cracks in the Republican obstruction wall"

No. Republicans are more willing to go off the cliff: Liberals are overconfident that "they are about to win the coming tax fight in Congress,"says Josh Barro at Bloomberg. "They're not." If the U.S. falls off the fiscal cliff, it "might well cause a new recession, which would be even more politically damaging for the Barack Obama administration than for congressional Republicans." The bottom line is that "Republicans are prepared to incur significant political costs to defend their position on the top tax rate issue, and Democrats cannot accept the economic damage that would from a major short-term tax increase." 
"High income tax cuts are here to stay — for now"

It all depends on Obama: For Obama, the budget negotiations represent "a second chance to take command of the nation's policy debates and finally fulfill his promise to end gridlock in Washington," says Jackie Calmes at The New York Times. Obama has been unfairly characterized as an ineffective negotiator, and this time around he "will not simply hunker down [in the White House] for weeks of closed-door negotiations as he did in mid-2011, when partisan brinksmanship over raising the nation's debt limit damaged the economy and his political standing." Obama is already allying with business leaders, a core Republican constituency, to push a balanced deficit-reduction package. And the president is also planning "to rally public support" to remind the GOP that elections have consequences. 
"In debt talks, Obama is ready to go beyond Beltway" 

 

NorthReport

Obama’s “grand bargain”-ing leverage

If the president wants to achieve a $4 trillion deficit reduction, he needs to aim high with the GOP

NorthReport

More fiscal nonsense from another loser on the right. These clowns just don't get it that Americans are tired of the lies.

Of course Obama taking Florida had nothing to do with Medicare. Wink

Paul Ryan: We didn’t lose on Medicare

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/election-2012/wp/2012/11/12/paul-rya...

NorthReport

The case against a “grand bargain”

A deal that cuts entitlements would be bad for mainstream Americans. And besides, what's the rush?

NDPP

Grand Bargain Betrayal Coming  -  by Stephen Lendman

http://warisacrime.org/content/grand-bargain-betrayal-coming

"Grand bargain betrayal is planned. It comes in stages like boiling a frog. It doesn't know it's dinner until too late."

 

The Grand Bargain is a Grand Lie  -  by Cenk Uygur

http://readersupportednews.org/opinion2/277-75/14520-the-grand-bargain-i...

"...it'll be the greatest robbery in American history. They are going to move the spending cuts away from defense and on to the middle class and poor by hacking away at Medicare and Medicaid. The Grand Bargain is a Grand Lie. Anyone who argues for it is either a fool or a charlatan. If President Obama was anything but the establishment hack that he is, he would never consider it..."

NorthReport

5 hard truths progressives must face about Obama

 

Now that the joy of election night has subsided, it's time for a reality check: The president's still a centrist

 

 

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