Advertising

Blog Roll
Who's My Legislator?

Virginia Blogs
All Things Education
Augusta Free Press
Bacon's Rebellion
Crew of 42
DemRulz
Dixie Pig
Greater Greater Washington
Loudoun Progress
Moonhowlings
Ox Road South Blog
Pilot on Politics" blog
Richmonder
Richmond Sunlight
Shad Plank
Vivian Paige
Waldo Jaquith


Find more about Weather in Arlington, VA
Click for weather forecast
Search




Advanced Search


Ken Plum Joins Campaign for Tax Cuts for Rich People

by: TheGreenMiles

Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 15:17:43 PM EST


Why would any Virginia Democrat join a campaign to gut the social safety net to finance tax cuts for rich people?

"I am proud to join the Campaign to Fix the Debt and lead my fellow Virginians in advocating for real, fiscal reforms-like making entitlement programs solvent, reforming the tax code and reducing the deficit-to put our nation on the path to fiscal health," says Del. Ken Plum (D-Fairfax) in a press release today from Fix the Debt. But that's a bait & switch - social safety net programs & "the tax code" aren't driving our current deficits - Social Security is solvent through 2038 & Medicare is solvent through 2024. The debt is fueled by the lingering effects of the Bush tax cuts, Bush recession & Bush unfunded wars.

As the New York Times reports, what "Fix the Debt" really wants is tax cuts for the filthy rich:

But in the weeks ahead, many of the campaign's members will be juggling their private interests with their public goals: they are also lobbyists, board members or executives for corporations that have worked aggressively to shape the contours of federal spending and taxes, including many of the tax breaks that would be at the heart of any broad overhaul. While Fix the Debt criticized the recent fiscal deal between Mr. Obama and lawmakers, saying it did not do enough to cut spending or close tax loopholes, companies and industries linked to the organization emerged with significant victories on taxes and other policies.

"Some of these folks who are trying to be part of the solution have also been part of the problem," said Jared Bernstein, a senior fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a liberal-leaning advocacy group, and a former economic adviser to Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. "They've often fought hard against the kind of balance that we need on the revenue side. Many of the people we're talking about are associated with policies that would make it a lot harder to fix the debt."

If this campaign was really about debt reduction, they'd have been pushing for a full expiration of the Bush tax cuts as part of the "fiscal cliff" - but as Matt Yglesias details, they didn't:
TheGreenMiles :: Ken Plum Joins Campaign for Tax Cuts for Rich People
I'm not saying Fix the Debt or anyone else "should" love the cliff. I'm saying that a group that genuinely believed deficit reduction was the most important issue on the planet would love the cliff. A group that doesn't love the cliff has some priority other than deficit reduction. Sometimes Fix The Debt says the thing they prioritize is the need to avoid unduly rapid austerity. Hence they claim to worry that "the sudden and blunt nature of deficit reduction in the fiscal cliff would have a devastating impact on the economy."

But here, again, there's a problem of consistency. If you believed that avoiding short-term austerity was the most important problem you'd favor kicking the can further down the road. But they say that's actually the very worst policy option around.

So it's not a group dedicated to avoiding premature austerity at all costs and it's not a group dedicated to deficit reduction at all costs either. But it does include among its "core principles" that we need to reduce entitlement spending and enact "comprehensive and pro-growth tax reform" that, among other things, "lowers rates." That sounds a lot like the agenda of a group that's dedicated to rate-cutting tax reform and entitlement spending cuts, rather than to any particular view about the appropriate timing of deficit reduction.

Even if you take "Fix the Debt" at face value, their logic doesn't make any sense: We must protect future generations by gutting their social safety net! Huh? If Social Security & Medicare become a problem in the future (something that's hard to forecast now when the deficit swings so heavily on economic fluctuations), we can decide then to raise taxes or cut benefits. Gutting the social safety net now just guts the social safety net, and Virginia Democrats like Ken Plum should know better.

(Also: Don't spam people.)

Tags: , (All Tags)
Print Friendly View Send As Email

Menu

Make a New Account

Username:

Password:



Forget your username or password?


Advertising

FOLLOW BLUE VIRGINIA on SOCIAL MEDIA


Donate to Blue Virginia

About
The purpose of Blue Virginia is to cover Virginia politics from a progressive and Democratic perspective. This is a group blog and a community blog. We invite everyone to comment here, but please be aware that profanity, personal attacks, bigotry, insults, rudeness, frequent unsupported or off-point statements, "trolling" (NOTE: that includes outright lies, whether about climate science, or what other people said, or whatever), and "troll ratings abuse" (e.g., "troll" rating someone simply because you disagree with their argument) are not permitted and, if continued, will lead to banning. For more on trolling, see the Daily Kos FAQs. Also note that diaries may be deleted if they do not contain at least 2 solid paragraphs of original text; if not, please use the comments section of a relevant diary. For more on writing diaries, click here. Thanks, and enjoy!

P.S. You can contact us at lowell@raisingkaine.com and you can subscribe to Lowell's Twitter feed here. If you'd like to subscribe to Miles Grant's Twitter feed, click here. For Teacherken, click here. For Kindler, click here.

P.P.S. To see the Blue Virginia archive, please click here. To see the Raising Kaine archive, please click here. To see the Blue Commonwealth archive, please click here.



RSS Feed

Subscribe to Blue Virginia - Front Page


Powered by: SoapBlox