Progressive Programmer

Progressive Politics or idle geek banter. What's on my mind when I'm irked, intrigued, bored or up too late.

Location: Michigan, United States


Schmuckountability - Deficit Spending


Bush, and republican Presidents in general (during my lifetime) are very fond of spending other people's money, especially when it tends to end up lining the pockets of their friends. Borrowing to grow their pet-portions of government while complaining of government's costly girth. Cutting taxes while increasing spending, and claiming that putting money in the pockets of the rich will eventually put money in the pockets of the poor. Nonsense, of course. Widening the gap between poor and rich seems to be the mantra of their collective conservative subconscious.

And for this, I declare Bush Jr, Bush Sr, and Ronald Reagan fully schmuckountable.

They always have an excuse today, of course. And they know that they won't be in office when the hell finally comes to get paid. What's more, they likely suspect that when a Democrat comes to power (disregarding the nonsense of a Permanent Majority they sometimes eschew) that they, the great GUP (Grown-Ups-Party), will somehow be able to blame the other side of the aisle for causing the budgetary disaster. That, as usual, it will be a democrat left to pick up the piggy bank and sit there for hours with a nearly empty tube of crazy glue, sniffing the fumes of the last few viable, putrid methods for restoring our country's fiscal sanity.

And for this, I declare Bush Jr, Bush Sr, and Ronald Reagan fully schmuckountable for this eventual hell.

In the wake of Katrina, giant numbers continue to be bandied about. $11 billion. Nay, $52 billion. Nonsense, $200 billion. Alas and alac (the 2 lost Baldwin Brothers) $300 billion!! That's equal to about 3/4 of the GDP of Australia.

That isn't an expensive natural disaster. It's a bottomless feeding trough for government contractors and bureaucrats drooling over McMansions and stepping-stone jobs they can use to catapault into even cushier gigs as lobbyists in the giant, feeding-trough-in-the-sky of Washington D.C. And for this reason, you can expect every Bush-lovin' Republican Senator and Congressman to chorus in the same refrain... raising taxes now would be a disaster for the economy.

"Huh?", you say.

"I thought you said this was going to cost $300 billion?", you gasp. "We're $500 billion in the red for '05 already, shouldn't we stop the bleeding???"

"As a fraction of GDP, the deficit is not very large, historically speaking", will be the general form of their response. Which may be true. But that's not the reason the Republicans are all schmuckountable. They're schmuckountable because of the National Debt. The National Debt is the sum total of all of our deficits and our surpluses, lumped into a giant pile of IOUs to our own citizens, folks in other countries, and other nations.

That's running about 27k per citizen right now. I know that I don't have 27k lying around and I sure as hell know my wife and two kids don't either. But Republicans don't see this as an issue. Bush brags about cutting the deficit in half in five years but glosses over the tricky accounting and divergent assumptions he used to make the claim.

So if the Republicans are all schmuckountable on the National Debt, who the hell is actually going to be held accountable?

You. Me. Everyone. Our children and grandchildren. Some Democrat that manages to get the keys to the White House or lead a retaking of one of the houses and realizes that prudence and common sense mean raising taxes is the only option.

Raise taxes? Republicans will decry it as the death knell of the US Economy (like they did when Clinton raised taxes--which was followed by the amazing economic expansion Bush was given as a starting point). And it is at that point they will be on the downslope of the schmuckountability path, where they point out that the blame-game is the digging up of old wounds, and that dealing with the problems we have of the present are more important than pointing fingers for problems birthed years before.

Bush and his friends don't make mistakes. They don't admit failure. And they don't raise taxes. And for these three reasons, they help to guarantee they will remain schmuckountable on our deficit spending until the Party of the Grown Ups takes back our government.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention


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