This exposes one of the major contradictions in the Obama/Democrat ideology. One the one hand they propose tax increases on family incomes over $250,000 per year in order to finance their universal healthcare program and other massive increases in government spending. On the other they want to reduce the taxable compensation earned by those over the $250,000 level. The leaves us in a quandary as to how they propose to finance this increased government spending.
Put another way, one can understand a politicians plan to raise revenue by taxing the “rich” but with trillion dollar increases in spending you need a lot of rich to tax. This goes against the whole principle that led to the Clinton surpluses. The rich made a lot of money during the internet/software bubble which was then taxed. If you reduce the salaries and bonuses of the executive class, you are reducing the tax base from which to raise revenue.
So as the Democrat candidate for senate from Minnesota once put it in his former role as SNL comedian, “What does this mean to me “Al Franken?” What means is that the don’t tax the middle class promise is soon to go by the wayside. There will need to be significant taxes on the middle class (as defined by Obama, i.e. those below $250,000) to pay for all this or the government will join the big banks in bankruptcy. Many of these taxes will be hidden in the form of the “Cap and Trade” program to reduce CO2 emissions. You will see them as your utility bills increase as well as in the cost of manufactured products and gasoline.
So be happy with your $500 per year tax cut. You will pay dearly for it in so many ways!
It is likely that that the Democrats have now reached their “high water mark” and will slowly begin to recede in the years ahead. What is important now is that we unite in opposition to the Obama Administration and the Democrat leadership in Congress. We should vote against questionable appointments like Geithner and Holder. We must oppose the wasteful surge in spending that Obama now proposes. We must also seek allies among the Democrats recently elected in basically Republican states. If they want to remain in office they must be educated not to follow Reid, Pelosi, and Obama off the cliff.
Issues we must be prepaid to fight, with bipartisan filibusters where possible, include the so-called “Freedom of Choice Act”, any new gun bans or registration, etc., socialized medicine, the so-called Fairness Doctrine, and attempts to mainstream homosexual behavior. It addition we must press to keep the Bush tax cuts as a requirement to support any stimulus bill. There is a real possibility that the Democrat policies will lead to a serious inflation problem before the 2012 election and we need to get on the right side of this issue. So what might be seen as short-term unpopular may well turn out very different in a few years.
One useful move would be to organize a group of Senators in “safe” seats and those who won’t face election until 2014 to engage in a media counter-offensive against the Democrats. They should be joined by House member in “safe” seats. We need to carefully but consistently chip away at Obama’s credibility. The decisions announced today on terrorism the clearly move in the direction of weakening our security are just one opening. Congressman Boehner handled this well. Others need to follow up and press this issue.
Now is not the time of complacency but rather the time for bold action. The future our country is clearly at stake. We must be strong now more than ever.
So we are left with the most liberal government in history with the most liberal-biased media and a somewhat shaky five-to-four majority on the Supreme Court as the only check on their actions. This comes also at time when we have an economic crisis that portends to be the most serious since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The stage is set of a reduction of our individual rights, our long term economic opportunity, and the growth in influence of dangerous threats abroad.
This is not to completely excuse the missteps of the outgoing Administration. The Iraq War with 20-20 hindsight was a major strategic miscalculation. While it now looks as if we will “win” in spite of everything the Democrats have done to stand in the way, it will be a pyrrhic victory. The emerging democracy in Iraq is likely to tilt toward Iran with its sixty percent Shia majority. And, the costs in terms of wear and tear on military and the public’s will makes a serious effort to prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons all but impossible. Essentially we went after the wrong target and spent ourselves doing it.
The economic situation is largely due to those who have now been elected to repair it. One consequence of our highly partisan politics is that they most naïve decide almost all close elections. The public attributes way too most credit and blame to the President for economic matters. While the final blow was delivered by large financial institutions reckless use of credit default swaps, it is also clear that these securities only exploded in popularity because of government policies promoting subprime mortgages. No good deal goes unpunished and so what was intended to help poor people get access to home ownership soon turned into a vehicle for reckless real estate speculators. A fair review of the record shows far more Democrat finger prints on this problem than Republican.
The incoming Obama Administration faces many challenges in putting a credible policy structure together. Since most of the liberal ideas they have advocated are not workable it will be interesting to watch. Do the really want to raise taxes in recession like Herbert Hoover did? Do they really want to close Gitmo and if so what do the do with the terrorists? How do they reconcile their support of the “global warming” theory with the need to save the auto industry and all of the UAW support? Ultimately how do the reconcile the tensions between the radical factions that gave Obama so much campaign cash and the more moderate image the candidate projected to swing voters?
McCain completely mishandled the situation politically by injecting himself into the debate over the Paulson package and trying to postpone the first presidential debate. This allowed the cabal for the Democrat-corporate Media and Congressional Democrats to set an ambush for him. This resulted in McCain showed up tired and unprepared for the first debate. Given the knee-jerk reaction of the naïve independents and the damage McCain inflicted on himself has resulted in a sustained lead for Obama.
Rather than try to be part of the solution McCain would have been better advised to have focus on the role that Democrats had in setting in motion the subprime loan crisis in the first place. He should also emphasize his role in trying to bring Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac under tighter regulation in 2005 and how it was blocked by Senate Democrats. The by pointing out that Obama was the second highest recipient of PAC money from the two GSEs. In this way he could portray Obama and Senate Democrats was being the cause of the problem and himself as one who had done his best to solve it. This was probably the only clear opportunity to win in wake of the financial meltdown.