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Thread: GOP gets bolder; prepare to be crushed

  1. #1
    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    Default GOP gets bolder; prepare to be crushed



    I don't give a shit if you don't want to plow through documents or even sit still long enough to absorb financial information. Here's the situation:
    You've hired Tom DeLay as your financial planner, like it or not. And as the Washington Post reports this morning, in a frightening but far from complete account, DeLay and his henchmen are about to loot you as if you were some Native American tribe.
    Among your other monumental blunders is not taking a pickaxe to pols like Dick Cheney, who enriches himself and his pals at your expense, and Karl Rove, who has a history of peddling judgeships.
    They're always getting over on you and your wallet. And if you don't start getting some outside financial advice concerning the GOP's renewed effort to cut the budget, your grandparents will curse you now, and your grandchildren will curse you a few decades from now.
    A mountain is about to fall on you figuratively, of course, but who can predict? This disaster is manmade, specifically by the men of the GOP, primarily DeLay, who's about to bilk you again, but legally this time.
    As the Post's Jonathan Weisman writes today:
    • House Republican leaders have moved from balking at big cuts in Medicaid and other programs to embracing them, driven by pent-up anger from fiscal conservatives concerned about runaway spending and the leadership's own weakening hold on power.

      Beginning this week, the House GOP lawmakers will take steps to cut as much as $50 billion from the fiscal 2006 budget for health care for the poor, food stamps and farm supports, as well as considering across-the-board cuts in other programs. Only last month, then-House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (Tex.) and other GOP leaders quashed demands within their party for budget cuts to pay for the soaring cost of hurricane relief.
    Weisman does a good job portraying just how the GOP leadership regained its heartlessness. But you have to turn to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) for the real impact mainly, the outrage that the GOP plan, which the radical-right congressmen plan to pursue with renewed vigor, calls for even more tax cuts for the wealthy.
    So for just a minute, set aside Harriet Miers and Judy Miller and Plamegate and Wampumgate. The GOP leadership, still operating under the direct leadership of DeLay he's indicted, for Christ's sake is renewing its pre-hurricane push for Draconian cuts.
    The post-hurricane package proposed by the GOP was bad, as the CBPP's James Horney and Robert Greenstein noted on October 5:
    • On September 21, the Republican Study Committee of the House of Representatives, a group of that chamber’s most conservative Republican members, released a large package of program cuts that it proposes be used to offset the cost of relief and recovery from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

      The recognition that deficits are a problem is welcome, and some of the cuts proposed by the RSC should be considered as part of any deficit reduction plan. Yet the package as a whole is highly unbalanced.

      It calls for deep cuts in basic programs for the poorest and most vulnerable Americans.

      It also would hit the middle class substantially, raising the costs of health care sharply for elderly Medicare beneficiaries with modest incomes and increasing the costs of school lunches for middle-income families.

      Yet it calls for virtually no sacrifice from the most well-off Americans, who have benefited heavily and disproportionately from the tax cuts enacted over the last four years.

      In fact, it leaves in place generous new tax cuts predominantly for millionaires that are slated to start taking effect on January 1, 2006, even as the package cuts deeply into programs for poor families and for elderly people getting by on modest incomes.
    Let's not even talk about poor people or black people. It's clear that they're marginalized by our increasingly undemocratic process and that they will suffer the most.
    But the rest of you are playing a sucker's game by letting this House play with your money. More from the CBPP:
    • The package includes substantial cuts in programs upon which millions of middle-class Americans rely. It proposes to delay implementation of the Medicare prescription drug program for one year (a proposal immediately disavowed by the Republican leadership in the House).
    But now, as Weisman points out this morning, that disavowal has now itself been disavowed, and it's full steam ahead. Rolling over your head, that is.
    • It also would substantially increase Medicare premiums and raise deductibles and co-payments in Medicare. For most Medicare beneficiaries, these changes would raise out-of-pocket costs by an average of about $1,700 per couple in 2006 and by larger amounts in subsequent years. The package also would terminate support for school lunches provided to middle-income families, requiring such families to pay more for their children’s school meals.
    Well, what about natural and unnatural disasters? Here's what:
    • The package would even cut $6.8 billion over ten years in grants that help local governments improve their “first responders? capabilities and be better prepared in cases of emergency, and would cut $25 billion over ten years in funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which helps protect the country from epidemics of infectious disease, biological and chemical terrorism, and environmental hazards.

      Grants to help state and local governments promote energy conservation and meet water quality standards would be slashed as well.
    Finally, do you really want to see even more pledge drives on public TV? As the CBPP noted:
    • Funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Humanities would all be eliminated.
    And now for the bad news:
    • In contrast to these large cuts aimed at people at the bottom and middle of the income spectrum, the RSC package proposes no scaling back of the large tax cuts enacted since 2001 that have been of greatest benefit to the nation’s wealthiest individuals, and no action to close abusive tax shelters.

      The Urban InstituteBrookings Institution Tax Policy Center has reported that the tax cuts enacted in this decade are reducing the taxes of people who earn more than $1 million a year (the top 0.2 percent of taxpayers) by an average of $103,000 this year.

      In addition, the RSC does not suggest deferring or shelving two tax-cut measures enacted in 2001 that are not yet in effect, will start taking effect on January 1, 2006, and will benefit only people at high income levels.

      The Tax Policy Center reports that 97 percent of the tax-cut benefits from these two new tax cuts will go to people with incomes that exceed $200,000 a year, and that a majority of these tax cuts will go to people who make over $1 million a year.

      For people making over $1 million, the two new tax cuts will cut taxes an additional $19,000 a year, on average, when fully phased in. This will be on top of the $103,000 in average annual tax cuts these individuals are already receiving.
    In case you still don't understand this crisis, here's how the CBPP summarized:
    • In other words, under the RSC package, lower- and middle-income Americans would face substantial reductions in basic services and large increases in out-of-pocket costs, even as the already-hefty tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans were allowed to grow still more generous.
    I told you you'd feel crushed. But that's not what Bush's handlers wanted you to feel back on August 15, 2002, when he stopped off at Mount Rushmore for a campaign speech. This is part of what he said, according to the White House transcript, which dutifully notes the reaction of the crowd of suckers:
    • In order to help our economic recovery, we need to make the tax relief package we passed out of the Congress permanent. (Applause.)

      Those tax reliefs came right at the right time. See, when you're in the middle of a recession, it's important to let people keep their own money. (Applause.)

      It's also to important to remember when we're spending money, it's not the government's money we're spending, it's the people's money, it's your money. (Applause.)

    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

  2. #2
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    *tries to register even an iota of surprise*
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    Maybe we're piling it on a bit thick? I'm off to find something nice about el shrubbo...see you next year...
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Hey, i posted that 'democrats are spineless' article! I'm free from guilt!

    There's just so much more ammo against Bush that comes out day by day
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    True...now stop distracting me. I feel the urge to play devil's advocate.
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Shyeah, good luck with that one
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    Oy...some respect there, girly girl...
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Bush is indefensible, only mass delusion makes people think there's something worthwhile in his presidency
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    This is hilarious. I googled Bush+good news and the only good news, at least on the first page, came from the Repug national committee...
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! ourmaninBusan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    Bush is indefensible, only mass delusion makes people think there's something worthwhile in his presidency
    Don't they feel a need to be loyal to a wartime president
    no matter what?...especially in light of 9/11/2001.

    ♫` ∴|| ~∞≠∝ ♫♪ $ -4C

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    that was 5 bleedin years ago.

    GET OVER IT ALREADY. Stop letting it be used as a leash around your necks.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Seriously. Why should I or any American fell some blind sense of loyalty to a man who does not deserve our respect but our derision? That's what is expected in dictatorships, not in a democracy. I really hope that comment was sarcastic. Blimey.
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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    Elite Member Mr. Authority's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ourmaninBusan View Post
    Don't they feel a need to be loyal to a wartime president
    no matter what?...especially in light of 9/11/2001.
    Heck most republicans are still using 9/11 as an excuse that "changing president's would mess up national security". No matter how much evidence of Bush administration's crimes comes out, they'll still hump his leg in terms of "patriotism".

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