Democrats & Liberals Archives

Spineless Republicans

Republicans are ready to pass another tax cut for the rich. The top tenth of the top 1 percent of American elites get a 4.8% cut and the rest of us get a 0.4% cut. But that’s nothing new — the first $3 trillion in irresponsible tax cuts were doled out the same way with the wealthiest 1 percent getting a 12% cut and the rest of us getting a 7% cut.

The problem is, just like the last two rounds of tax cuts, Republicans will fund this new $70 billion boon for the rich by borrowing the money. It just boggles my mind that so many so-called conservatives support tax cuts financed by Chinese loan sharks. Why the hell aren't these Republican handouts offset by spending cuts?

Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan spent the last five years admonishing Republicans for not financing their tax cuts with offsetting cuts in spending and government growth. And just like President Bush ignored the military's requests for more troops in Iraq, Congressional Republicans ignored the Fed chief's warnings of economic catastrophe if they stay the course on deficit spending. The new Fed chief, Ben Bernanke, recently issued Republicans the same warning and again it fell on deaf ears.

Here's the difference between Democrats and Republicans: Democrats have the balls to balance the budget, Republicans do not.

There's no doubt that Democrats would howl and moan over any cuts whatsoever, but Republicans control he government -- the best Democrats could hope to do is merely slow them down. Republicans can pass spending cuts whenever they damned well please, but they won't because they're spineless and afraid of voter backlash.

On the other hand, does anyone doubt that Democrats would roll back the GOP tax cuts that benefit only the wealthiest 1 percent of American elites and balance the federal budget? You may not agree with the Democrat's solution, just as we disagree with the way Republicans say they want to cut spending, but Democrats would balance the federal budget and build up a strong American economy just like we did last time. Republicans will never cut spending because they're spineless.

Democrats made the unpopular decision to balance the budget by raising taxes slightly in 1993 -- and it cost us control of Congress the next year. But we stood firm and we balanced the budget. Republicans will never balance the budget because they lack the moral conviction to back up what is supposed to be the cornerstone of conservative policy: fiscal responsibility.

Why aren't Republicans passing spending cuts? Because in spite of all the fiscal tough talk, they're spineless cowards.

Posted by American Pundit at May 8, 2006 10:15 AM
Comments
Comment #146165

Are the Republicans planning on the Democrats trying to block this Gift to Rich GOP Campaign Contributors?

They could label the Democrats Tax & Spend and try to hold on to the Congress.

Dont believe that old saw that all criminals are dumb.

Posted by: Arm Hayseed at May 8, 2006 10:48 AM
Comment #146166
Republicans will never balance the budget because they lack the moral conviction to back up what is supposed to be the cornerstone of conservative policy: fiscal responsibility.

It’s revealing that the Republicans, when they did not control both Congress and the White House, would always advocate a “balanced budget amendment” to the Constitution at every opportunity. (In addition to being part of every Republican Party platform, I recall it was also one of the “Contract With America” points.)

But they seeem to have forgotten that position since the took control of both houses of Congress and the White House. Can any Republicans out there please tell me why?

Posted by: Steve k at May 8, 2006 10:56 AM
Comment #146174

Perhaps the Republicans , fearfull of losing control of the House and the Senate, are attempting to buy the next election???

Posted by: fuzzwart at May 8, 2006 11:19 AM
Comment #146177

Yep, that 100 dollars is going buy a lot of votes.

Posted by: Rocky at May 8, 2006 11:25 AM
Comment #146178

I think the last time the budget was balanced the GOP actually had a hand in it. Now, I’m not taking their side but keep in mind they had control of the house and pushed the idea of a balanced budget. They turned around and used the slight tax increases that it took to balance the budget and used it against the Dems….double talk?

It’s easy to advocate balanced budgets when one is the minority party because they don’t have to answer to their priviliged constituents as to why they aren’t “bringing the bacon home”. The biggest difference seems to be that the Dems did have the intestinal fortitude to balance the budget and the Repubs (now that they are in power) do not.

That’s enough for me to want to oust the two-faced double-talkers…..

Posted by: Tom L at May 8, 2006 11:26 AM
Comment #146180

fuzzwart, BINGO! Of course that kind of political bribery occurs on both sides. Democrats are trying to buy the Hispanic Block vote with amnesty for illegal aliens.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 8, 2006 11:36 AM
Comment #146182

David,

Wasn’t amnesty a GOPer option? Talk about flip flop!


AP,

I agree with fuzzwart et. al. The tax cut is simply a way to pay back their base for the massive contributions needed to buy 11/06 and 11/08.

Posted by: Dave at May 8, 2006 11:42 AM
Comment #146187

AP, I could be proved wrong in time though I doubt it, that the Republican spending and deficits and debt growth are part and parcel a part of their long term plan to end entitlement programs through bankrupting the future generation’s ability to support them.

Viewed this way, it is not that Republicans are spineless. It is that they have a plan and are executing it, along with millions of Americans in the future who won’t be able get access to health care due to the collapse of our health and Medicare systems.

Don’t get me wrong, the Medicare program no longer fits our economic circumstances, and reforms of many kinds to both the health care and Medicare systems are mandated. But that is if you want to save them. Republicans don’t want to save Medicare, and they are willing to allow the health care system to partially collapse if that is the cost of killing Medicare for the poor, and newly bankrupted middle class (by enormous medical expense debt).

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 8, 2006 11:48 AM
Comment #146193

David, Republicans have a majority in both houses as well as the presidency. If they want to end entitlements, all they have to do is introduce a bill and pass it.

But they won’t, because they’re spineless.

Posted by: American Pundit at May 8, 2006 11:57 AM
Comment #146195

BTW, I really hesitated to call this latest $70 billion give-awy a tax cut. Since Republicans aren’t financing it with spending cuts, they’re basically just borrowing the money from China then turning around and doling it out to the already wealthy elite.

Posted by: American Pundit at May 8, 2006 11:59 AM
Comment #146199

Here’s the problem with bitching and moaning about tax cuts for the rich:

Most of the Repub’s base is in middle-class, morality based voters. If they could win elections with just the the top tenth of the top one percent this would be hopeless. Those voters may not agree with the rich getting bigger pieces of the tax cut pie than they do, but they see it as harmless, and a small price to pay to keep pro-life, anti-gay pols in power. Until the Dems can figure out a way to translate Tax cuts for the rich into hardship for the poor, they will continue to have a hard time turning those voters.

Posted by: David S at May 8, 2006 12:13 PM
Comment #146201

GUys,

Take a look at the DOW this week. I think that’s the answer, a quick-fix incentive for a rebolstering of the market that BTW will not do anything in the long run. Whatever happened to longterm economic goals?—oh wait that would be on a democratic platform—whoops.

These types of quick remedies usually have a shelflife of about a month and a half and each time he does it it is worth less and less. Kinda’ like filling up a leaky tire and expecting the air to hold.

The problem is this overwhelming deficit and tax cuts eventually need to be rolled back—the housing boom is slowing and the war is at a contract standstill. Pump up the leaky tire all you want but it still won’t patch the massive holes in our budgetary mess—the tax cuts themselves.

Let Bush fall on his own sword—we can always say we told ‘em so.

Posted by: Novenge at May 8, 2006 12:19 PM
Comment #146202

AP, You call it spineless. I call it politically saavy. They would lose power in a heartbeat if they voted to end Medicare outright. Same with Democrats on illegal immigration as more and more Americans are awakening to the costs to them in jobs and wages. The DNC is well aware of the costs to American workers, but they are, to use your term, spineless, to come right out and say so for fear of losing the Hispanic vote in November.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 8, 2006 12:20 PM
Comment #146207
AP, You call it spineless. I call it politically saavy.

Republicans abandoned their core value because they’re afraid making America strong in the long term will cost them some votes in the short term. I call that spineless cowardice.

Posted by: American Pundit at May 8, 2006 12:25 PM
Comment #146209

David Remer,

About a month ago I was adding up what it would take for the average non-smoker to die. Medicaid cannot cover it at all.

Add up the cost of Senior Housing, medical operations, ten or more years of medication, annual doctor visits, rising cost of pharmaceuticals. It comes out to about $800,000.00 per person. Now multiply that times the number of babyboomers and we have a real crisis on our hands.

We need a good pay in system as opposed to the federal and state support system. These numbers are absolutely astronomical in what the babyboomers will cost us.

Smokers are the cheapest obviously, which is probably why it was affordable at one time. A smoker usually costs less than ten thousand dollars before they die with medicaid entitlements. But with all the non-smokers—the Medicaid system is pretty much DOA for the boomer generation.

I think the Republican game plan is to get rid of social programs but the Bush agenda seems to be more geared to making all the governement contracts more expensive hence bolstering all their wallstreet holdings in wartime. It’s hard to tell really but I am more of the persuasion that Republicans seek office to make their own stockholdings worth more and has little to do with running or improving our nation—as is evidenced by their actions.

Keep the deckchairs tidy and raid every icebox.

Posted by: Novenge at May 8, 2006 12:41 PM
Comment #146210

All of what everyone is saying points out one thing. I won’t rehash all the reasons but let’s face it, The Republicans have made a mockery of governing and the American tax payer. It’s time to clean house come November!!! Like in the last election we need to ask ourselves, which is the least of the two evils??

Posted by: fuzzwart at May 8, 2006 12:42 PM
Comment #146214

David:

I could be proved wrong in time though I doubt it, that the Republican spending and deficits and debt growth are part and parcel a part of their long term plan to end entitlement programs through bankrupting the future generation’s ability to support them.

Wouldnt this create havoc in the United States? Wouldnt bankrupting the future generation cause severe financial problems for an entire generation or more?

If so, how does that translate into votes? It takes votes to win elections, and since that is primarily what politicians are about these days, how would such a strategy create a climate of increased votes for the GOP? Not sure I understand how you’ve thought it all through.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at May 8, 2006 12:55 PM
Comment #146216

Novenge,

The debate about end-of-life-care is focused on the last year of life, where 80% of the costs are incurrred.

fuzzwart,

Did you buy into Bushie’s slimejob lies about Kerry? The biggest problem we have as a nation seems to be an inability to distinguish politics from policy. Bushie convinced people he was the “moral” candidate because of stem cells and abortion and the “war” president because of 9/11. His policies and their (lack of) effectiveness should have been the louder voice.

Posted by: Dave at May 8, 2006 1:03 PM
Comment #146218
Same with Democrats on illegal immigration as more and more Americans are awakening to the costs to them in jobs and wages.

David,

It is the current situation that is costing us in lower wages and jobs, not amnesty. Bush would like to see it continue with a guest worker program, but all that would do is continue the current trend of importing cheap labor and driving down wages. Amnesty on the other hand, would be the Republican’s worst nightmare. When you give amnesty to millions of immigrants, they become Americanized. What happens then? They will demand and get American wages and benefits. They will join American unions. Wages will go up for all workers, as companies no longer have a pool of cheap labor to chose from. There goes the GOP cash cow from corporations that would lose their cheap labor, and the Dems will pick up those immigrant votes as well as see their union backers grow.

Posted by: JayJay Snow at May 8, 2006 1:05 PM
Comment #146224

Dave,

No I didn’t buy into any lies from either side. I do all my own reading from a lot of different sources. Then I choose the leaset evil.

Posted by: fuzzwart at May 8, 2006 1:23 PM
Comment #146237

I am disappointed with Republican spending, but what - precisely - do Dems advocate cutting? And if you raise taxes on the top 1% to its previous level, will that balance the budget?

I also don’t recall the budget being balanced in 1993, but I do remember the fights Bill Clinton had with the Republican Congress when they wanted to cut the size of government more than he was willing. Before we ran a small surplus after how many years of Republican rule in the House? And 1993, that made how many years of Democratic control that succeeded in balancing how many times?

Entitlements are the big and growing part of the budget. If ALL the Republicans were willing to address them we could address them. Also if SOME of the Dems were willing we could too.

The Dems made it clear at the SOTU speech that they take credit for killing entitlement reform. Let’s give it to them.

I thought Bill Clinton did a good job. But he only started to perform well after being chastized in 1994 and having to face an agressive Republican congress. Maybe Dems could do that for President Bush, but they have never been particularly interested in cutting spending - at least not when they were in power.

Posted by: Jack at May 8, 2006 2:19 PM
Comment #146266

Republicans would have to first GROW a spine in order to pass tax cuts. Spending cuts would be even better. Bush is not at 31% because you socialists don’t like him. He’s that low because Conservatives are discouraged and abandoning him. He is doing more for the left right now than you are doing for yourselves. Be polite and send him a Thank-You card.

Posted by: David C. at May 8, 2006 3:38 PM
Comment #146271

Each of the last 3 Republican Presidents added more to the current national debt than all previous Democrats combined.

Posted by: Arm Hayseed at May 8, 2006 3:47 PM
Comment #146310

JJ,

Your comments on amnesty don’t seem to jib with the laws of supply and demand. It seems that the only wages that would increase are those currently below minimum wage (assuming those illegal wages exist) to minimum wage. After that the laws of supply and demand kick in, don’t they? Why would more legal workers competing for the same jobs result in higher wages?

Posted by: Rob at May 8, 2006 5:34 PM
Comment #146329
Take a look at the DOW this week. I think that’s the answer, a quick-fix incentive for a rebolstering of the market that BTW will not do anything in the long run.

The reason the DOW is doing so well is because most people are pulling their money out of real estate (anticipating a crash) and dumping it back into the stock market. Its the reverse of what happened in December 1999, people pulled their money out of the stock market and invested in real estate.

The bigger problem this time as opposed to 1990 is the interest only loans… if your paying $4,000/month and your home is worth $800,000. then suddenly the interest rate goes up a few points and the value goes down, who is going to pay $6,000./month for that same home now worth only $400,000.?

In the case of the stock market the biggest losers were the ones who paid the most for their stock (Yahoo $400) and the last to get out (Yahoo $40).

Most people will walk away, since they have no equity in the home, an the banks will foreclose. If you’re the bank and are holding a thousand foreclosures, can you afford to carry the property taxes, maintenance, etc…?

Lets see how wonderful the economy is doing in two years… people will be selling their homes to buy food.

Posted by: Pat at May 8, 2006 7:00 PM
Comment #146361

Jack said: “Entitlements are the big and growing part of the budget. ”

Only half right, Jack. Entitlements and Military/Security spending are both shooting through the roof, and both are robbing our future of potential peace, prosperity, and freedom which ALL Americans want for their children.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 8, 2006 8:35 PM
Comment #146364

Jay Jay said: “When you give amnesty to millions of immigrants, they become Americanized. What happens then?”

What happens then Jay Jay is the problem of illegal immigration is made many times worse by the carrot you just dangled in front of a billion other foreign nationals to come here anyway they can - all will be forgiven eventually, just keep coming.

And don’t talk to me about Americanizing illegal immigrants until you explain why L.A. has hundreds of Latino gangs littering the county with dead and wounded gang members and innocents and ever expanding the Latino poverty stricken Ghettos geographically. Large numbers of other communities are beginning to go the way of L.A. because of both cheap wage legal immigration and illegal immigration.

Yes, a majority of immigrants become Americanized by the 2nd or 3rd generation in responsible ways. But, a large minority of the Americanized includes the Barrios and Ghettos, and the rapid growth in organized crime and black market activities now increasingly ignored by the FBI and U.S. Marshalls due to intense focus on terrorists.

The illegal immigration must HALT, or we will lose huge amounts of law and order, prosperity, and yes, freedom in the future as we attempt to finally rectify the lawlessness and poverty that illegal immigration wrought!

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 8, 2006 8:45 PM
Comment #146365

JBOD, in case you hadn’t noticed, almost half of Americans don’t vote. And the majority of those that don’t are either poor, or lost faith in the system. So the voter backlash you predict resulting from bankrupting entitlements is not born out by real world evidence. Entitlements serve the poor. The poor don’t vote, they are too busy wrestling with their immediate poverty needs.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 8, 2006 8:49 PM
Comment #146370
if you raise taxes on the top 1% to its previous level, will that balance the budget?

The last analysis I saw on this put the irresponsible GOP tax cuts at $3 trillion. A mere 25% went to the middle class for the child tax credits, ending the marriage penalty, and expanding the 10% bracket. The remaining $2.2 trillion that primarily benefit the rich (stock dividend tax cuts, capital gains cuts, and cuts for estates worth over $4 million) would go a long way toward rebalancing the budget.

I am disappointed with Republican spending, but what - precisely - do Dems advocate cutting?

How about the size of the federal goernment. Clinton and Gore’s Reinventing Government initiative cut back 426,200 non-military bureaucracy jobs and brought the federal government down to the size it was when Eisenhower was president. Since Bush was elected, the federal government bureaucracy has regrown by almost 40%.

And those Clinton/Gore bureaucracy cuts were done by Presidential Directives — Bush could do the same thing any time he wants. But he won’t because it’ll piss off too many of his cronies and supporters who now people those cushy gubment jobs.

Entitlements are the big and growing part of the budget.

I’m curious. If Social Security revenue exceeds the program’s outlays — as it does — how is it a drain on the budget? It seems to me the Social Security surplus is helping keep the Republican’s budget deficit from looking as bad as it really is.

Posted by: American Pundit at May 8, 2006 8:58 PM
Comment #146372
The illegal immigration must HALT

David, everybody agrees on that. It’s a shame that our Republican representative were too spineless to pass their own immigration reform bill.

Posted by: American Pundit at May 8, 2006 9:01 PM
Comment #146425

American Pundit:

While, I understand your concerns over government spending, however I hope you will take the fact that many of the expenditures that increased the deficit to its swollen level are the result of the impact and recovery efforts after September 11th and the expenditures on warfare. The situtation is not as critical when you consider that the bulk of the recent expenditures are a temporary expense.

You also said something regarding the Bush tax cuts that I think reflects an outdated view of the economic activities of American citizens. You said:

- ” … The remaining $2.2 trillion that primarily benefit the rich (stock dividend tax cuts, capital gains cuts,…

Many Americans of moderate wealth have stock or mutual funds. I am far from rich and I have a retirement account that was favorably affected by the changes you spoke of. Given the sad state of Social Security, the number of Americans who will be involved in the stock market as part of a supplemental retirement fund will only grow. Reducing the taxation on income from investment is not an issue for only the wealthy.

Also, I think it is only fair to point out that the wealthiest 10% contribute more to the government through taxation than all the rest of us. The highest income brackets had higher taxation rates prior to the tax cuts and it is fair to reduce these relatively higher rates more than the brackets which are less taxed. I don’t feel that the government is entitled to half (or more) of anyones income.

Posted by: goodkingned at May 9, 2006 2:42 AM
Comment #146431

Here;s the real reason Medicare is being dismantled…I look for the govt to end survivng military widow benefits, and retirees benefits too. Corporations are being allowed to discontinue retirement benfits, pensions, insurance companies allowed to not cover medical
necessary tests, procedures, care…
http://www.counterpunch.org/lindorff05052006.html

They’re At It Again!
The Looters of Social Security
By DAVE LINDORFF
May 5, 2006
They’re at it again.

The answer is that the Republicans’ paymasters-the business leaders-don’t like Social Security. They absolutely loath paying that 7.5 percent matching contribution every month into to their employees’ Social Security accounts. And the way they can get out of that annoying bill is to get people so worried about the future of Social Security that they start calling for an end to the program, in favor of privatized investing.
Of course, they also are listening to another special interest group-the banking industry and the investment banking industry-which want to get their hands on trillions of dollars of Social Security money by having the public switch out of a government program and into private accounts, which they would “handle” ­for a fee of course.
Me, I don’t worry about Social Security. I start getting my checks in eight years, and I’m not the slightest bit worried about whether the money will be there. The reason for my confidence is numbers, but not financial numbers. Population numbers. My fellow Boomers and I are going to be the most powerful damned senior lobby you’ve ever seen. We’ll way outnumber today’s grayhairs, and look at their political clout already.
We’re going to get what we need out of Congress, even if it means getting money out of the general treasury.
It’s appropriate that the administration should come out with this latest scare-mongering story about Social Security on May 1. After all, May 1 is coming to be symbolic of all that’s wrong and fraudulent about Bush the Lesser’s whole presidency. It’s the day he pretended to be a Top Gun pilot, and pretended that his splendid little war was over, in 2003. It’s also the day his whole war-mongering fraud was exposed by the Downing Street memo, revealed by the Times in London in 2005.
Now it’s also the day he tried to revive his campaign to end Social Security by scaring the public into thinking that the system was going bankrupt.

Posted by: cheryl holmes at May 9, 2006 3:30 AM
Comment #146435

Of course the republicans are worried about losing control of the house and senate, but not as worried as Bush himself, because if the democrats gain control, impeachment is a given. Maybe Bush should go back into the movie business again, I heard that B movies are back.

Posted by: Scott Burgoyne at May 9, 2006 5:51 AM
Comment #146446
Why aren’t Republicans passing spending cuts? Because in spite of all the fiscal tough talk, they’re spineless cowards.

I’ve got to agree with David Remer on this one: it’s not that they’re spineless so much as they are Evil. (And/or Ignorant, as in the case of the monkeymass of pliable and compliant WonderBread and NetworkCircus consumers they have created, through years of underfunding Public Education in this country.)

Oh, they’ll cut-and-run sure enough: and the $100 Bribe is a perfect example of it - a hundred dollars buys quite a lot at a WalMart. But at their core, the men who run BushCo., Inc. are a calculating, morally-bankrupt cadre of Spencerian criminals who make their caricature - C. Montgomery Burns - seem like a regular, ordinary, real-life example of the Smartest Guys In The Room…

Posted by: Betty Burke at May 9, 2006 7:28 AM
Comment #146471

Democrats have the balls to balance the budget, Republicans do not? Name one time in congressional history when the Democrats balanced the budget. It didn’t happen until the Republicans took control of Congress in the 90’s. Oh, and for the record, the 1993 tax hike wasn’t a slight increase. It was the largest tax hike in history. I guess I’ll have to keep listening to Limbaugh.

Posted by: Tim at May 9, 2006 10:41 AM
Comment #146477

Tim,

The Democrats balanced the budget, despite the Republicans. You mentioned the 93 tax hike, did you know EVERY REPUBLICAN voted against it. Doom and gloom the Republicans predicted, great job loss they said… hmmmmmmm, yeah, keep listening.

Posted by: Patrick Howse at May 9, 2006 11:02 AM
Comment #146550

Let’s see…the reason Clinton was able to balance the budget and begin paying down the national debt was because he had a Republican Congress…and , the reason Cheney/Bush cannot balance the budget or pay down on the debt is because he has a Republican Congress?

Betty B, is that what Jack and his crowd are saying now?

Posted by: Marysdude at May 9, 2006 2:44 PM
Comment #146553

Oooops! I forgot the ‘made for Republicans’ war in Iraq, and ‘lost on Republicans’ hurricaine Katrina, and boondogles and Abramoffs and Cunninghams and…and…and, I guess we can’t expect much help from the right…they only know how to SPEND it, not how to budget it, or work with it. I’m beginning to believe you are right about the ‘evil’, or ‘stupid’, on that side.

Posted by: Marysdude at May 9, 2006 2:56 PM
Comment #146556

Can they be both???

Posted by: Marysdude at May 9, 2006 2:57 PM
Comment #146558

Evilly stupid, or stupidly evil?

Posted by: Marysdude at May 9, 2006 2:59 PM
Comment #146685

Marysdude: `Glad you asked - you see, with total Truth:

You can call them “Evil” - or - you can call them “Stupid” - or - you can call them “Evil’n’Stupid” - or - you can call them “Stupid’n’Evil” - but you doesn’t have to call them “Johnson!


Posted by: Betty Burke at May 9, 2006 10:37 PM
Comment #146705

Betty,

You’ve got them by their ‘JOHNSON’!

My opinion? I think they are stupidly evil…

Posted by: Marysdude at May 9, 2006 11:17 PM
Comment #147503

My friend, Evil is always Stupid - because Truth, Justice, and Goodness always triumph in the end!

Posted by: Betty Burke at May 12, 2006 2:15 AM
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