Thursday, February 21, 2013

Simpson/Bowles 2.0

      The original Simpson/Bowles commission was initiated by President Obama in the beginning of his first term. The charge of the commission was to find solutions to the mounting debt and deficit problem. The President ignored the final Simpson /Bowles report because it included too many common sense cuts to a bloated federal budget and not enough punishing taxes levied against the wealthy. Instead, President Obama chose to attack Republicants for the debt he created, proving once again that the President is more interested in affixing blame than he is in fixing problems. 
     Simpson/Bowles 2.0 calls for the closure of loop holes and the eliminations of deductions. The Republicants offered this very same approach during the recent Fiscal Cliff debate as an alternative to raising tax rates. And even though the President had proposed tax reform that included closing loopholes and eliminating deductions just a year before, during the Fiscal Cliff debate he insisted on raising tax rates on job creators. Now that tax rates have been raised, I'm sure the President will embrace the new Simpson/Bowles recommendations wholeheartedly. Especially since he got so much flack for ignoring  Simpson/Bowles 1.0. In embracing Simpson/Bowles 2.0, he can shield himself once again from any responsibility for an increase in taxes by saying that he is following the recommendations of the second Simpson/Bowles because of the criticism he received from Republicants for not following the first Simpson/Bowles.
     If there is one thing that Barack Obama does well, it is avoiding accountability for ideas and policies that he initiates. A good case in point is the Sequester cuts that will go into effect automatically on March 1 if Congress and the President don't reach an agreement on meaningful deficit reduction. If someone were to drop onto this earth from outer space and listen to President Obama drone on in one of his many speeches about the Sequester, they would think he had nothing to do with it. And he can exculpate himself from blame because the American public, by and large, has a short memory. I'm sure if you did a poll and asked Americans who created the whole idea of  the Sequester, a majority would say the Republicants. But the Sequester was manufactured in the Obama bad idea factory in August of 2011 as a way out of the debt ceiling debate raging at the time. Remember that? It was the first time in U.S. history that the country's credit rating was downgraded, another great distinction of this administration.
     The Republicants should not allow President Obama to once again drive destructive policy and then escape accountability with the help of the brain-dead media. They should insist that any closure of loopholes and elimination of deductions also be accompanied by across the board decreases in tax rates. Republicants must also make the case to the American people that the President's approach will deliver a severe blow to an already faltering economy. And how reforming the tax code as a corollary to lowering tax rates will spur economic growth. This nation deserves real solutions that will work, not the President's approach of ducking blame and avoiding responsibility.

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