Schumer Rejects Base-Broadening Tax Reform, But Proposes “Entitlement Reform” as an Enticement for GOP

By: Tuesday October 9, 2012 9:15 am

Chuck Schumer, the third-ranking Democrat in the Senate and basically the avatar of the Democratic messaging operation, just gave a speech to the National Press Club about the expectations for tax policy in the lame duck session. And he basically rejected the emerging bipartisan approach to lower tax rates and “broaden the base” by closing [...]

Alan Simpson: One Tit Down, 309,999,999 to Go

By: Wednesday May 23, 2012 12:55 pm

Alan Simpson, the most avuncular-looking Mean Girl in Washington, is back at it again. He fired off a letter to the California Alliance of Retired Americans, months after making an appearance in the Golden State that included a protest by this group. It was clearly eating at his soul so much that he had to [...]

Panetta: You’re Either With the Defense Industry Lobbyists or You’re With the Terrorists

By: Friday November 11, 2011 11:48 am

The special pleading for the military-industrial complex on the part of Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has reached truly disgusting levels: Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has been steadily escalating his warnings about the impact of the deep cuts facing the Pentagon if the congressional super committee fails to reach a deal. On Thursday, he played the [...]

Two Days After Promising Constituents on the Safety Net, Durbin Says Democrats Must “Talk About Entitlement Reform”

By: Wednesday November 9, 2011 12:59 pm

A couple days ago, Dick Durbin was confronted by constituents in Illinois and forced to take a position on the uncontroversial values-based statement that said:  “Social Security and Medicare is based on a promise that if you pay in, you earned the right to guaranteed benefits… cuts to Social Security and Medicare will have a [...]

Panetta’s Peace Dividend: Routing Iraq and Afghanistan Troops to Challenge China

By: Tuesday October 25, 2011 9:30 am

By any objective measure, Leon Panetta has been a terrible Defense Secretary. Just look at the series of missteps and gaffes he has committed in his young tenure at the Pentagon. He claimed that the President sent 100 combat equipped soldiers to central Africa not to help combat and disarm the Lord’s Resistance Army, but [...]

Obama Deficit Plan Won’t Include Social Security Changes, Reports Say

By: Thursday September 15, 2011 6:21 am

Both the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal report that President Obama’s proposal for deficit reduction, due out Monday, will not include any changes to Social Security. The reports are less certain about increasing the Medicare eligibility age, giving a definite “maybe” about that measure. Here’s a sample of the WaPo report: People close [...]

Elmendorf Does Simple Math for Catfood Commission II

By: Tuesday September 13, 2011 1:39 pm

CBO Director Doug Elmendorf had an interesting hearing in front of the Super Committee. Throwing a cold dose of reality on the proceedings, Elmendorf, who in his role is almost by definition concerned with long-term budget deficits, calmly explained that the Obama jobs framework is precisely what you would do if you were looking to [...]

Obama’s Deficit Plan to Include Medicare Eligibility Age Increase

By: Wednesday September 7, 2011 11:01 am

I’ve been trying to remind people throughout the run-up to the Obama jobs proposal that it would also presage a deficit proposal, to “pay for” whatever spending is in the jobs proposal. We now have a topline number for the jobs plan: $300 billion, half from tax cuts and 2/3 from the extension of current [...]

Regression to the Mean: Elites Start to Recognize Failure on Jobs

By: Monday August 29, 2011 2:14 pm

It’s been amusing over the past several days to watch so-called “credible” people come around to where us dirty hippies have been on the economy for going on two years. For instance, Nick Kristof (who admittedly has other pursuits) suddenly figured out that persistently high unemployment may be a problem: I’ve spent a chunk of [...]

Kerry, Not Baucus, Weakest Link on Catfood Commission II

By: Thursday August 11, 2011 9:35 am

I was on the radio yesterday and I explained that Max Baucus is probably to the left of all the announced members of the Catfood Commission II, something the interviewer could hardly believe. But I think the available evidence shows this to be the case. He dissented from the original Catfood Commission because of Social [...]

Hyping the Deficit to Distract from the Bad Economy?

By: Wednesday August 10, 2011 10:09 am

I tend to look at the available evidence from the President, that he wants to enact a “grand bargain” that cuts safety net spending far more than raising taxes, that he’s willing to put really misguided proposals like raising the Medicare eligibility age and cutting federal participation in Medicaid on the table, and I make [...]

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