Friday, April 1, 2011

Democrats Should See the Republican's 61 Billion and Raise Them 200 Billion

The House Republicans are crowing about their 61 billion in cuts from Head Start, school lunches, Planned Parenthood, NPR and other small left wing programs and challenging the Democrats to put up or shut up. Sixty-one billion is about three percent of the deficit and is almost meaningless if you actually want to balance the budget. The Republicans are waging a propaganda war and trying to paint themselves as the party of fiscal responsibility and lower deficits for the 2012 elections.

Look how insignificant the 61 billion is in the big picture.

The Republicans are at a disadvantage with a very limited stake in the no limit poker game of deficit reductions since the only bets they can place come from non-defense discretionary spending which is a small part of the budget. The Democrats on the other hand have an almost unlimited stake since there is plenty of room to raise taxes from the present low levels and find cuts in the bloated military budget. The Democrats, holding a virtual royal flush, are in a no lose situation but they don't realize it and will probably wind up folding.
If the Democrats had any brains, they would see the Republican's 61 billion and raise them 200 billion. The 200 billion can easily be found by combining some cuts from the huge pentagon budget with very modest tax increases on the wealthy; the two things that are verboten to Republicans. Then every time a Republican crows that they can't get Democrats to agree to close the deficit, the Democrats could point out that they are trying to close the deficit even more but the Republicans will not go along.
I said "if the Democrats had any brains"; unfortunately, unless the Democrats radically depart from their history, they will play right into the messaging of the Republicans and allow the Republicans to convince Americans that the Republicans are the responsible party of smaller deficits.

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