Patterico's Pontifications

7/4/2010

Apocalypse Now

Filed under: Economics,Obama — DRJ @ 3:32 pm



[Guest post by DRJ]

Recently, even President Obama acknowledged the potential fiscal apocalypse caused by record deficits and called on Republicans to put up or shut up:

“Next year when I start presenting some very difficult choices to the country, I hope some of these folks who are hollering about deficits step up. Because I’m calling their bluff.”

For now, most Republicans have focused on deficits but the Wall Street Journal calls this Obama’s Tax Trap:

“Mr. Obama’s plan has been to increase spending to new, and what he hopes will be permanent, heights. Then as the public and financial markets begin to fret about deficits and debt, he’ll claim that the debt is “unsustainable” and that the only “responsible” policy is to raise taxes.”

Instead, the WSJ argues the GOP’s focus should be on growth and spending, not deficits, or they will fall into Obama’s tax trap:

“Republicans need to break out of their rhetorical preoccupation with debt and deficits, focusing their political aim instead on spending and above all on reviving economic growth. They should hold the line against all tax increases and begin to consider a menu of tax cuts to make the U.S. more competitive, especially if the economy continues to underperform.

Mr. Obama’s strategy of spending our way to prosperity clearly hasn’t worked, as the voters are coming to understand. But if the GOP policy response is merely to bemoan deficits, they will soon find themselves back at their historic stand as tax collectors for the welfare state. To avoid Mr. Obama’s tax trap, Republicans also need a growth agenda.”

Too bad Congress doesn’t have someone like Rick Santelli and his Stop Spending message. I think that argument resonates with most Americans.

— DRJ

32 Responses to “Apocalypse Now”

  1. This should be easy to hit out of the park.
    But never bet against Repub stupidity.

    Jim,MtnViewCA,USA (a6a60f)

  2. “MASSIVE TAX INCREASES ARE COMING!!” When? How? Evidence? Anything? Other than hysterics, I mean.

    JEA (0d6bde)

  3. No, next year the Congress should concentrate on a “bottom kill” by just stopping the funding of all non-enumerated functions of the Federal Government.
    The President cannot spend what Congress does not appropriate, or is that too simple for Harvard grads to assimilate?

    AD - RtR/OS! (ed07ac)

  4. “When? How? Evidence? Anything? Other than hysterics, I mean.”

    JEA – Easy. Has action been taken to extend the Bush tax cuts? If not, massive tax increases Jan 1.

    You’re welcome.

    daleyrocks (1d0d98)

  5. 2011 Tax increases.

    EDIT: Warning — the link is a .pdf file.

    DRJ (d43dcd)

  6. But you see, DRJ, those aren’t tax increases! That is the way things were! And it must be GWB’s fault.

    Eric Blair (c8876d)

  7. This___should____be____very____easy.

    – What is the historic evidence about actual tax revenues received after taxes are decreased and when taxes are increased?
    – Explain why that is so.
    – Point out that the Democrat’s assumptions and plans are simply wrong, though they do accounting tricks to make it look otherwise, and they either know they are wrong and lying to you, or don’t know they are wrong. Either way is not good for John Q. Public.

    Put it on a blackboard, a screen, a bar graph with blocks of gold representing money. Do not stop until they understand that:
    After those tax rates were cut in 2003, total federal tax revenue increased by 44%, or $743 billion, from 2003-2007

    And if there are Republicans that don’t understand this or don’t believe it and have just been making political points, they need opposition in the next primary.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  8. It’s the spending stupid!

    daleyrocks (1d0d98)

  9. That’s one nasty list of tax increases. But, DRJ, you might want to warn people it’s a pdf file.

    John Hitchcock (9e8ad9)

  10. Okay.

    DRJ (d43dcd)

  11. “Put it on a blackboard, a screen, a bar graph with blocks of gold representing money. Do not stop until they understand that:
    After those tax rates were cut in 2003, total federal tax revenue increased by 44%, or $743 billion, from 2003-2007″

    Travis Monitor (6dd9c5)

  12. I don’t know how to tell you this JEA, everyone pretty much knows massive tax increases are coming Jan. 1.

    You might keep an eye on the market to see where the money flows, but it’s not going to be in investments in the good old USA.

    You see, because these tax increases aren’t just going to cripple the wealthy. As a matter of fact, they probably won’t affect the wealthy very much at all.

    For the rest of us, though, it’s Katy-bar-the-door.

    Every non-profit and charity in the country is trying to figure out how to cut losses and make investments that can maintain services. Unless, of course, it’s one of the blessed political fronts.

    Here’s the deal, bub: Most charities and non-profits, that really help people, do depend on regular people donating a small part of their income to keep going. And when those regular people have to start dedicating their income to the federal government to keep unions and political fronts afloat, their donations to actual charities that help people tend to dry up.

    You can comfort yourself that the marginal rates are going back up to where they should have been to punish those evil capitalists, but it really is a losing game.

    If I agree with you that capitalism is evil, will you be willing to agree that its wealth actually makes the world work?

    Ag80 (363d6e)

  13. It doesn’t do any good Ag…you’re just casting pearls before swine, as there aren’t three Progressives in history that knew anything about economics,
    or they would realize that government revenues in the US have been relatively stable over the long term regardless of what the highest marginal tax-rate is; with the proviso that they tend to go up and down in inverse ratio with that marginal rate, but the controlling factor seems to be the amount of economic activity which increases with lower marginal rates, and decreases with higher marginal rates.

    AD - RtR/OS! (ed07ac)

  14. In other words, Democrats have rigged the rules so that merely stopping a tax increase will be scored to increase the deficit. These are the same Democrats who haven’t “paid for” trillions of spending in the last four years, but watch them soon denounce Republicans as fiscally irresponsible merely for trying to stop a tax increase. Orwell would love modern Washington.

    ……can’t we just make the tax cuts “emergency tax cuts”, just like the democrats have done to their $2.5 trillion dollar spending spree, to avoid Obama’s laughable “pay as you go” rule…..

    Baxter Greene (af5030)

  15. ” massive tax increases are coming Jan. 1″

    That would be for all the millionaires who benefitted from Bush’s tax cuts. Interesting how I never hear the GOP talking about ending the billions in tax breaks big corporations – cvorporations like BP – get.

    ‘massive tax increase” is bullsh-t. They were cuts which helped fuel the deficit because the GOP never paid for them. Which NOW they’re squawking about because they don’t have any dieas to offer.

    Interesting how I never hear talk from the GOP about why we put TWO wars on the govt credit card.

    And before the shieking starts about how I’m a leftist commie, I couldn’t give a rat’s ass about either party. The Dmes are just as bankrupt as the GOP.

    JEA (0d6bde)

  16. They were cuts which helped fuel the deficit because the GOP never paid for them – JEA

    Please look at posts 7 and 11 again, and reread until you see the error in your statement. The Bush tax cuts increased tax revenue, because there was more economic activity. The deficit was not made worse by the Bush tax cuts, the deficit was made worse by increased spending.

    I explained this once using cardiac physiology, but I don’t have time again now.

    Increased taxes are best as a political tool if you can get the majority to think the effect will be to “get those rich SOB’s” and promote an attitude of class warfare.

    Ag80- I think it is part of Obama’s (and the liberal) plan to make private charity disappear, because they can’t control it. They do think they know better how to spend our money than we do and want to make a practice of it. It is very clear from their personal examples that they surely don’t value private charity and philanthropy.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  17. They were cuts which helped fuel the deficit because the GOP never paid for them. Which NOW they’re squawking about because they don’t have any dieas to offer.

    As per usual, you offer nothing in the way of actual proof of your statement, then typically screech about how Booosh and the Rethuglicans are entirely responsible. Good luck with that.

    I couldn’t give a rat’s ass about either party.

    You’ll have to forgive me, I just snorted coffee through my nose at that one.

    Dmac (93e7cb)

  18. Tax increases are a rich man’s tool to control the little people. The Democrats in Congress are all very wealthy people. Each and every one of them.

    I think they understand the negative effect of tax cuts on the economy and just do not give a great big damn about truth. They are classists and racists and taxes are how they get at the people they despise.

    Vivian Louise (643333)

  19. A wonderful description/indictment of contemporary liberalism, Vivian Louise… top o’ the mornin’ to ya!

    GeneralMalaise (9cf017)

  20. Tax cuts to all those wonderfully wealthy people in the 10 percent tax bracket are being rescinded so those grossly wealthy people can pay 15 percent. I got it. JEA has class-envy, a self-blinding sin, and cannot see any facts.

    And, yeah, I want to see those evil companies like BP get “tax breaks” but I call them tax cuts. I want to cut corporate taxes to ZERO because businesses don’t pay taxes anyway. They adjust the price of their goods to recoup the cost, thereby causing the people to pay ever more hidden taxes.

    John Hitchcock (9e8ad9)

  21. As usual, Vivian makes my point much more succinctly.

    Dmac (93e7cb)

  22. JEA, the BS is all yours. The current deficit has almost nothing to do with the Bush admin era tax cuts. They have to do with massive spending increases made by Democrats.

    The tax increases in 2011 are going to devastate the economy. Huge increases in capital gains, a tiny estate tax exemption coupled with massive estate taxes, increases in payroll taxes caused by the Democrats disasterous faux “health care reform” and increases in the tax rates of everyone.

    The claim that the Bush era tax increases benefited only the “rich” is a continuous Democrat lie. Which can be easily rebutted by simply looking at the distribution of income tax levies in the IRS data that shows a shift upward in income quintiles of the tax burden during the Bush admin.

    All we every get from you, JEA, is falsehood piled on misrepresentation.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  23. Hey, the Progressives ran against Hoover even after he died (10/20/64), and they’ve been running against Reagan since 1/20/81, and will be beating-up on GWB until the cows come home (which will be never because with the diversion of so much ag production to ethanol, they’ll all starve out there on the plains foraging for food – but hey, the enviro’s will have subsidized swill to power their “flex-fuel” enviro-friendly SUV’s).

    AD - RtR/OS! (6e3949)

  24. “Next year when I start presenting some very difficult choices to the country…”

    I’m sure it will be just another variation on “Give us your money or go to prison.”

    The usual.

    Dave Surls (a79ef0)

  25. #12 Ag80:

    If I agree with you that capitalism is evil

    Why the hell would you want to do that? Since it isn’t, that’s like saying, “Well, I’ll agree with you that black is white…” Nonsense, drivel, and a waste of your time.

    And the situation that you describe isn’t isolated to just charities and other philanthropic entities. When people’s discretionary spending is reduced (in this case by two factors, a major depression caused by the O!bozo and his clowns; and an imminent tax hike), then not only is their charitable spending reduced, so are their marginal purchases: purchases that they probably would have made if they didn’t feel that doing so would put them at financial risk of not being to meet their own needs. And when that happens, vendors (that is, people whose only resource is whatever gew-gaw they might sold to a confident buyer) lose and eventually die off. Both in an economic sense when they leave the market, and in a very real sense when they shuffle off this mortal coil because that marginal purchase was no longer in the discretionary spending budget of their customer base.

    And there are two results that can be laid directly at the feet of O!bambi and his minions because of his criminally insane economic ineptitude: people will starve, and much of the world’s wealth will be diminished.

    EW1(SG) (edc268)

  26. That would be for all the millionaires who benefitted from Bush’s tax cuts.

    And that would be a bad thing just exactly why?

    Not that I’m a millionaire, in fact, far from it, but I benefited from those tax cuts too, and would like to continue doing so so that I can use all that extra cash to do frivolous things like pay the water bill, buy insulin, stuff like that.

    Interesting how I never hear the GOP talking about ending the billions in tax breaks big corporations – cvorporations like BP – get.

    There are two reasons for that: 1.) Just like the party leadership, you aren’t listening to the party base, and 2.) which party were those huge campaign contributions going to again, from companies like BP? Until the “big corporations” stop buying their kid glove treatment from fat cat Dems in positions of power and authority, there isn’t much point in discussing it, is there?

    They were cuts which helped fuel the deficit because the GOP never paid for them.

    As others have already pointed out, those tax cuts had a net effect of reducing deficits. But don’t let facts get in the way of a good drug induced high.

    Which NOW they’re squawking about because they don’t have any dieas to offer.

    Some of that “squawking” might really be alternative “dieas” [sic], but the Dems have shown that they are nothing if not demagogues.

    Interesting how I never hear talk from the GOP about why we put TWO wars on the govt credit card.

    Now, if that even made any sense, it might addressable.

    But it isn’t. And as Dave Surls has often pointed out, it is the Republicans that have traditionally managed to end wars.

    And before the shieking starts about how I’m a leftist commie,

    You are a leftist commie. What is there to shriek about? Do you think we are surprised, given the huge amount of inane and irrelevant drivel you constantly barrage us with?

    Part of the problem with being a leftist commie is that the ideas you guys continually attempt to recycle is that they have NEVER worked! Not once. Ever.

    Now, I am not going to get into a pissing contest about which party has more corruptocrats, but there is a huge difference in the base of the parties~the Dem party base is concerned with civil rights; and the other party’s base is concerned with human rights. The difference is that civil rights are those defined at the whim and for the convenience of the government, while human rights, those considered unalienable by the other party base, are usually the ones that the government finds most inconvenient and are the first to be regulated in favor of “civil” rights.

    Still an idiot and a jackass. All that damn braying gets annoying.

    EW1(SG) (edc268)

  27. Comment by EW1(SG) — 7/5/2010 @ 11:07 am

    Too well said, it soured right over his level of comprehension.

    AD - RtR/OS! (6e3949)

  28. What am I thinking…need more coffee…

    SOARED!

    Though what triggered the response was sour.

    AD - RtR/OS! (6e3949)

  29. Obama gave us that “the GOP is offering no ideas” even as he rejected the GOP proposal. It is simply a lie.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  30. What? You saw his lips move, right?

    AD - RtR/OS! (6e3949)

  31. Obama has a willing accomplice in the media. A reader of our local paper wrote to complain about a lack of coverage of the recent disagreement between Obama and Senator Jon Kyl:

    “… Don’t your editors know a story when it drops in their lap, or are they so preoccupied with helping to prop up this president that they simply won’t run anything that might uncover an ugly truth about him?

    This story is huge.

    Either Kyl is a liar or Obama is a manipulative leftist who is willing to compromise border security to push through an amnesty bill.

    Either way, please cover the story. We need to know the truth.”

    » Newspaper Editor’s NOTE: The White House has denied the conversation took place during a private Oval Office meeting between the senator and the president.

    I commented that “Senator Kyl said the conversation did take place. Why not just report it and let readers decide. The President has told several lies since assuming office.”

    GeneralMalaise (9cf017)

  32. The header on this thread makes me pine for the days of Fraser Smith on the radio with his “A-pair-o’-lips Now” schtick…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BYM3j1DJiZQ

    GeneralMalaise (9cf017)


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