GOP two-step

Steve Benen at TPM laments the Republican lack of concern for “fiscal sanity”:

“Quick quiz: what’s going to cost the U.S. more over the next decade: the exploding costs of entitlements like Social Security and Medicare or Bush’s tax cuts? Despite all the talk we hear about the prior, it’s not even close — the tax cuts are poised to cost the treasury far, far, more….

Keep in mind, most of the GOP field, including Rudy Giuliani and John McCain, are on record believing in the Tax Fairy — tax cuts can pay for themselves with increased revenue. It’s transparent nonsense, but it helps explain why the Republican field doesn’t even pretend to care about fiscal sanity.”

Here a graph of data from the Congressional Budget Office that’s shows what Benen is talking about.

Bush tax cuts are a massive drain on the Treasury; and they will only get bigger if made permanent. But this isn’t “fiscal insanity”. Its the plan. The GOP has been taken over by ideologues that believe government has no business running programs like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, or—God forbid—-national healthcare! They can’t actively oppose popular programs, so they advocate tax cuts that will eventually do the job for them. It goes like this:

  • Year 1: “We have to cut taxes to keep the economy humming and keep tax revenues high.”
  • Year 2: “Oh, gee whiz. I can’t believe these deficits are so high!! Whatever can we do? Its so sad, but I’m afraid we can’t afford these social programs.”
  • Repeat.

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