Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Contract From America (2)

The ten agenda items that make up FreedomWorks' Contract On For America are not onl self-serving and dangerous, but also contradict themselves. Consider "Demand a Balanced Budget," followed by "Stop the Tax Hikes":

Begin the Constitutional amendment process to require a balanced budget with a two-thirds majority needed for any tax hike. (69.69%)

Permanently repeal all tax hikes, including those to the income, capital gains, and death taxes, currently scheduled to begin in 2011. (53.38%)

The Washington Post's Ezra Klein on September 15 noted

There is no policy that President Obama has passed or proposed that added as much to the deficit as the Republican Party's $3.9 trillion extension of the Bush tax cuts. In fact, if you put aside Obama's plan to extend most, but not all, of the Bush tax cuts, there is no policy he has passed or proposed that would do half as much damage to the deficit. There is not even a policy that would do a quarter as much damage to the deficit.

Klein helpfully added this graph:

FreedomWorks is well aware of whom was helped most, as this chart from The New York Times demonstrates, by the tax hikes they want repealed (actually, allowing tax cuts to expire, as the Republican Congress and Republican president stipulated they would):

Nor is the impact of extending the Bush-era income tax cuts lost on FreedomWorks (also from Klein, via Andrew Sullivan among many others):

Advocating a balanced budget amendment sounds good, of course. But of course, Republicans as well as Democrats, conservatives as well as liberals (and moderates/centrists) would find a way around it to reduce taxes on the wealthy while increasing spending. FreedomWorks knows that, too.

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