Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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July 15, 2010

HEADLINE OF THE DAY.... McClatchy's headline says quite a bit: "GOP: No more help for jobless, but rich must keep tax cuts." That says quite a bit, doesn't it?

Republicans will no doubt howl about "bias," but the article actually just presents facts as they exist. Whether reality has a liberal bias is up to voters to decide.

Republicans almost unanimously oppose spending $33.9 billion for extended unemployment benefits for some 2.5 million people who've lost them, because they say it would increase federal budget deficits.

At the same time, they're pushing a permanent extension of Bush administration tax cuts, especially for the wealthy, which could increase federal budget deficits by trillions of dollars over the next 10 years.

The article is filled with various rationalizations to justify this. Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), for example, thinks this makes sense because "tax policy is dynamic." Good to know.

It's generally hard to guess what the public will find compelling, but if I had to guess, I'd say more Americans would rather spend $33.9 billion for extended unemployment benefits than $678 billion for tax cuts for the wealthy.

It's probably why the McClatchy article will be discouraging at RNC headquarters. Of course, if they Republican lawmakers don't like it, they could embrace a policy more in line with common sense, but that seems highly unlikely.

Steve Benen 2:15 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (23)

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Comments

So what are the odds that any of the primary Village media pick this up?

Yes, that was a rhetorical question.

Posted by: paul on July 15, 2010 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK
I'd say more Americans would rather spend $33.9 billion for extended unemployment benefits than $678 billion for tax cuts for the wealthy.

I admire your faith in human nature.

The problem is we live in a country where the median voter in November -- low turn-out, high Republican enthusuasm, more likely to be rural, older, whiter and better off than in '08 -- is likely to say "Well, at least most of the $678 billion isn't going to shiftless and lazy colored people so they can buy lottery tickets and malt liquor."

Posted by: Davis X. Machina on July 15, 2010 at 2:28 PM | PERMALINK

There goes McClatchy committing actual journalism again. Someone should put a stop to that.

Posted by: Kevin Phillips Bong on July 15, 2010 at 2:32 PM | PERMALINK

Yet you regularly make comments preparing voters for a republican take over of congress no matter how pathetic, nonsensical and disastrous their policies blatantly remain.

Dems need to get riled making sure the exposure of republicans' lunacy and economic destruction overcomes their desire to punish some of the disappointing dems. If dems are disappointing imagine the horror of the alternative. It will only take one more session of republican control to finish destroying the economy and push us into a plutocracy. This "tyranny of the minority" must end. There must be enough dems voted into office to overcome the handful of DINOs siding with the corporatists.

The midterm of the crazies should overcome complacency so start preparing for repubs to be thrown out instead of vice-versa. The majority of the country is democratic (if they will only vote)and the nation polls center left not right and that is a fact.

Posted by: bjobotts on July 15, 2010 at 2:45 PM | PERMALINK

No, this one is going to stick.

The Republican strategy, since the days of television's Dallas, is to make sure that their voters are kept in tow by having them identify with luxurious wealth. "You, too, can be rich..."

Reality may have been a bit too hard this time for people to keep this going.

One can only hope...

Posted by: jjm on July 15, 2010 at 2:45 PM | PERMALINK

A simple question:how specifically do tax cuts to the wealthy benefit th unemployed or the economy?

Posted by: st john on July 15, 2010 at 2:49 PM | PERMALINK
So what are the odds that any of the primary Village media pick this up?

If only we had a Democratic president who would hammer this day in and day out and call out he Republicans as the dishonest, swindling c*ocks*ckers they are. After all, even the lazy MSM report what presidents say. So it's really too damn bad John McCain won in 2008.

Wait, what's that you're telling me?

Posted by: Steve LaBonne on July 15, 2010 at 2:49 PM | PERMALINK

I, too, would hope that this brings people to their senses that the GOP has become a parody of Scrooge McDuck, but people react strangely to the unemployed in a recession. You saw the same thing during the Great Depression when people disparated those on "relief." When people are afraid for their own future, they turn on those who have already lost work and tend to want to believe they had a character flaw that led to them becoming unemployed. If people grasp that these are forces beyond their personal control, it is too frightening to contemplate.

Posted by: Scott on July 15, 2010 at 2:53 PM | PERMALINK

I've noticed a trend in journalism, especially the TeeVee variety, that ANYTHING controversial, loud, and outrageous gets lots of airtime. ("You Lie!" ,"Death Panels", Obama as Hitler posters).

I betcha if Obama said, "The Republican Party wants a return to slavery ,"( indentured servitude is too esoteric a concept for the masses) it would be all over the airwaves, and the Republican party would assure replays ad infinitum with their calls for censure, or impeachment.

-Worth a try, anyhow. . .

Posted by: DAY on July 15, 2010 at 3:01 PM | PERMALINK

I betcha if Obama said, "The Republican Party wants a return to slavery ...

He would be crucified day in and day out for the next two years of his presidency.

I mean, I agree that he really should say something outrageous, but it should be something outrageous that Republicans actually are doing. Coming out and making racially charged accusations is exactly wrong for Obama.

Obama would be better off engaging in some good old fashioned class warfare rhetoric. At least it would have a chance of splitting the tea party down the middle if he did it right.

Posted by: NonyNony on July 15, 2010 at 3:08 PM | PERMALINK

The REAL problem:

This President WON'T SPEAK OUT
He's too 'nice' for that

I can't imagine LBJ not running with this and driving Goopers into dust


Even Clinton and Jimmy Carter might do the same

But, Obama ?
Obama really is a 'dead end'
He's leading us into defeat
And he can't pass real economic stimulus

HOLD A PRESS CONFERENCE, Dammit

Posted by: Frisco, SF on July 15, 2010 at 3:10 PM | PERMALINK

That's the ad for November: "If you vote for any republican, you are voting to add $678 billion to the deficit to cover tax cuts for the wealthy but nothing on unemployment insurance payouts. If you vote for a democrat, you are voting to spend $34 billion to help people who lost their jobs because of failed Republican policies and against tax cuts for the rich. Vote Democratic to limit the deficit, fight the recession, and help Republicans find out what it's like to be unemployed."

Posted by: N.Wells on July 15, 2010 at 3:13 PM | PERMALINK

Of course most voters here in repulicland don't know that GOP == Republican. Much too subtle for them.

Posted by: G.Kerby on July 15, 2010 at 3:25 PM | PERMALINK

Mike Crapo's an idiot. I interviewed him during his 1998 Senate campaign when I worked for a small-town newspaper in southwest Idaho. He was pushing a national sales tax then, but couldn't seem to understand that such a tax is detrimental to the poor, who pay a larger percentage of their income on subsistence items. I explained this to him, and he said, "Yeah, you have a point there," as if it was something he hadn't even considered. Funny how rich people simply refuse to try and look at things from a poor person's perspective.

Posted by: Screamin' Demon on July 15, 2010 at 3:51 PM | PERMALINK

I can't imagine LBJ not running with this and driving Goopers into dust

LBJ would be kicking ass and taking names. Obama's too timid and scrawny to adopt the Johnson Treatment.

Posted by: Screamin' Demon on July 15, 2010 at 3:54 PM | PERMALINK

Does GOP actually mean: Get Out Please?
That seems to be the mantra whenever ideas other than theirs are suggested, or people with whom they disagree are present.

Posted by: st john on July 15, 2010 at 3:58 PM | PERMALINK

Republicans want to hand out hundred-dollar bills to the wealthy and take away the last dime from laid-off workers.

Posted by: polthereal on July 15, 2010 at 4:41 PM | PERMALINK

Hey Obama-bashers, you're in the wrong place.

Teabaggers meet in the last room on the right. Don't forget to turn your hateful comments into stupid signs!

Posted by: cr on July 15, 2010 at 4:42 PM | PERMALINK

There goes McClatchy committing actual journalism again. Someone should put a stop to that.
Posted by: Kevin Phillips Bong on July 15, 2010 at 2:32 PM

Yes, an outbreak of real journalism, with facts and everything! How that managed to slip through is anyone's guess.

Doesn't anyone at McClatchy know they're supposed to be just like the hopelessly corrupt Village lapdog known as the Associated Press?

Posted by: electrolite on July 15, 2010 at 5:05 PM | PERMALINK

Does it seem that the Republican plan to reduce the deficit is to maintain tax cuts for the wealthy and pay for it by ending social security and unemployment benefit payment while continuing to collect Social Security and unemployment insurance payments?
Sorta like the insurance companies do.
I know it sounds crazy, but how else to make sense out of what they are saying?

Posted by: thebewilderness on July 15, 2010 at 5:24 PM | PERMALINK

Republicans to Unemployed:DROP DEAD

Republucans to POOR people: yes you have a shorter life span than wealthy people and the gap increased over the lasr30 years, But We Don't Care.

Posted by: KurtRex1453 on July 15, 2010 at 5:35 PM | PERMALINK

"After all, even the lazy MSM report what presidents say." Steve LaBonne @ 2:49 PM.

Wanna bet? How much MSM reporting was given to President Obama's fund-raising speeches?
And how much was given to "deficit hawks", oil-company apologists, etc?
I used to think we were the "reality-based" bunch; now, I'm not so certain...

Posted by: Doug on July 15, 2010 at 8:28 PM | PERMALINK

Go figure. The hardcore right-wing GOPers are both heartless and brainless, which really makes one wonder how they stay alive even though missing two major body organs. Maybe they all go to Dick Cheney's doctors?

Posted by: The Oracle on July 15, 2010 at 9:32 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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