Memo to Obama: Don’t tie progressive spending policy to progressive tax policy. Each can stand on its own.
Reported today in the Washington Post:
President Obama on Tuesday unveiled an ambitious budget that promised more than $600 billion in fresh spending to boost economic growth over the next decade while also pledging to solve the nation’s borrowing problem by raising taxes on the wealthy, passing an overhaul of immigration laws and cutting health costs without compromising the quality of care. Obama seeks to raise more than $1 trillion – largely by limiting tax breaks that benefit the wealthy – to spend on building roads and bridges, early childhood education and tax credits for the poor.
Here’s the conceit: Uncle Sam is broke. He’s got a borrowing problem. He’s gone hat-in-hand to those who’s got, trying to borrow a few dimes off them. But they are ready to foreclose on his Whitehouse.
Obama knows his economy is tanking. Five and a half years after Wall Street’s crisis, we still have tens of millions of workers without jobs. Even the best-case scenarios don’t see those jobs coming back for years.
Obama will leave office with a legacy of economic failure.
Belt-tightening austerity isn’t working. He wants to spend more, but he doesn’t have more to spend. He’s run up his credit tab at the local saloon and the bar-keep won’t pour another whiskey.
So he’s got an idea: let’s take from the rich and give to the poor, homeless and jobless. Robin Hood rides to the rescue.
Look, we all love Robin Hood. continue reading…