Posts Tagged ‘ej



03
Mar
11

‘no glory for governors trying to do the right fiscal thing’

EJ Dionne: If you want to get national attention as a governor these days, don’t try to be innovative about solving the problems you were elected to deal with – in education, transportation and health care. No, if you want ink and television time, just cut and cut and cut some more.

Almost no one in the national media is noticing governors who say the reasonable thing: that state budget deficits, caused largely by drops in revenue in the economic downturn, can’t be solved by cuts or tax increases alone.

…The brave ones are governors such as Jerry Brown in California, Dan Malloy in Connecticut, Pat Quinn in Illinois, Mark Dayton in Minnesota and Neil Abercrombie in Hawaii. They are declaring that you have to cut programs, even when your own side likes them, and raise taxes, which nobody likes much at all. Rhode Island’s Lincoln Chafee has warned of possible tax increases too.

…Consider the new budget Gov. Scott Walker announced in Wisconsin on Tuesday. Among other things, he proposed cutting state aid to schools by $834 million over the next two years, a 7.9 percent reduction.

…what’s happening in so many places now is a reckless rush to gut the parts of government that all but the most extreme libertarians support – and that truly deserve to be seen (one thinks of education and programs for poor children) as investments in the future.

And those governors doing the hard work trying to balance cutbacks and tax increases get ignored, because there’s nothing sexy about being responsible.

Full article here

17
Feb
11

‘deficit hawks and the games they play’

E J Dionne (Washington Post): …It’s satisfying to see President Obama ignore the willfully naive who are wailing over deficits. He knows that new revenue will have to play a big role in deficit reduction. He also knows that House Republicans are pretending we can cut our way out of this mess and would demagogue any general tax increases.

So he has proposed some serious spending cuts and some modest revenue increases to keep things stable as he embarks on a long struggle to move our dysfunctional budget politics to a better place. This annoys his deficit-obsessed critics … Obama should smile, let them rage and go about his business.

Let’s look at history… …by the end of the Clinton years, we had a handsome surplus … the economic downturn that started on Bush 43’s watch made everything worse, cutting revenue and requiring more deficit spending to get the economy moving.

Where were the moderate deficit hawks in all this? …when it’s the progressives’ turn in power, the deficit hawks become ferocious. They denounce liberals if they do not move immediately to address the shortfall left by conservatives. Thus, conservatives get to govern as they wish…

It’s a game for chumps. The conservatives play it brilliantly. By winning their tax cuts and slashing government revenue, they constrain what liberals can do whenever they get back into power…. I hope Obama has the spine to keep calling the bluff of the deficit hawks until they get serious about changing the politics of deficit reduction. We can’t afford another 30 years of fiscal evasion.

Read the full article here

Thank you for the link LOL – great article

10
Jan
11

tyranny

EJ Dionne: ….It is not partisan to observe that there are cycles to violent rhetoric in our politics. In the late 1960s, violent talk (and sometimes violence itself) was more common on the far left. But since President Barack Obama’s election, it is incontestable that significant parts of the American far right have adopted a language of revolutionary violence in the name of overthrowing “tyranny.”

It is Obama’s opponents who carried guns to his speeches and cited Thomas Jefferson’s line that the tree of liberty “must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”

It was Sharron Angle, the Republican candidate against Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in Nevada, who spoke of “Second Amendment remedies” in discussing “domestic enemies.” And, yes, it was Palin who put those gun sights over the districts of the Democrats she was trying to defeat, including Giffords’.

Full article here




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