From Jay Bookman’s Atlanta Journal-Constitution column on the Republicans’ proposed budget as a moral document:
So what does it tell you about morals and values when the proposed budget is “balanced” solely on the backs of the most vulnerable, the struggling, those too young and too old to fend for themselves, those needing access to education?It repeals ObamaCare, of course, but it also slashes more than $900 billion from Medicaid, the system that today provides health-care coverage for millions of poor Americans, including children, and also covers some 60 percent of grandparents and great-grandparents in long-term nursing care. Overall, the Obama administration estimates that some 37 million Americans would be stripped of health insurance.It cuts Pell grants for those going to college. It cuts Medicare and turns it into a voucher program in which senior citizens will be forced to buy private insurance. It slashes food stamps and housing programs. At a time when Republicans are professing concern for the middle class and working people, this is how that rhetoric is transformed into actual policy.And at a time when corporate profits at all-time highs, the stock market is at all-time highs, and income inequity at all-time highs, what does it tell about morals and values when those prospering the most from this country’s productivity and hard work are asked to make absolutely zero sacrifice on its behalf?In fact, quite the contrary. The animating theory behind “tax reform” in the House budget is that those already prospering the most need and deserve additional rewards, must be enriched still further, while additional tax burdens are placed on those lower on the economic scale.
NYT’s Paul Krugman takes a different angle on it:
But the just-released budgets from the House and Senate majorities break new ground. Each contains not one but two trillion-dollar magic asterisks: one on spending, one on revenue. And that’s actually an understatement. If either budget were to become law, it would leave the federal government several trillion dollars deeper in debt than claimed, and that’s just in the first decade.
You might be tempted to shrug this off, since these budgets will not, in fact, become law. Or you might say that this is what all politicians do. But it isn’t. The modern G.O.P.’s raw fiscal dishonesty is something new in American politics. And that’s telling us something important about what has happened to half of our political spectrum.
…Outrageous fiscal mendacity is neither historically normal nor bipartisan. It’s a modern Republican thing. And the question we should ask is why…Does this mean that all those politicians declaiming about the evils of budget deficits and their determination to end the scourge of debt were never sincere? Yes, it does.
Look, I know that it’s hard to keep up the outrage after so many years of fiscal fraudulence. But please try. We’re looking at an enormous, destructive con job, and you should be very, very angry.
The question arises, how do Democrats awaken the needed outrage to hold the con artists accountable?