Gary McCoy cartoon via Townhall.
Granted, nobody should believe a single thing Obama says about anything – (including his denials that he knew anything about Fast and Furious), but in light of his press conference today, ahead of his budget negotiations with John Boehner and the Republicans, I thought it would be good to count the ways Obama has been duplicitous and disingenuous in his actions re the economy, (which he really and truly seems hellbent on destroying.) As always with him – you have to look at what he does – not what he says. As the saying goes — if his lips are moving…..
Yuval Levin writes at The Corner:
Looking at the details of the big and small deals (to the extent that the reports of those details are accurate of course), suggests to me a rather different turn of events over the past week. President Obama offered Speaker Boehner the president’s own budget outline and called it a compromise.
That would be a combination of the budget no one on either side of the aisle could support back in February, and his speech in April that outlined another budget but did not offer specifics. That’s Obama’s grand compromise – a raw deal that is a hodgepodge of his already rejected proposals that accepts none of the Republican proposals.
As every tea partier knows (it’s why the tea party was born) massive tax increases were planned from the very beginning of Obama’s tenure. Anybody with working brain cells could see that The Food Stamp President always planned to hike taxes to fund his calamitous expansion of government.
Even though he made the occasional feints at sounding reasonable: Obama in 2009: The Last Thing You Want is to Raise Taxes in the Middle of a Recession.
And since there’s no telling how long this recession/depression might go on, talking tax increases is a bad idea according to 2009 Obama — just as 2006 Obama considered raising the debt ceiling to be a failure of leadership. 2011 Obama disagrees with both of them.
And last fall, Obama said that we needed to extend Bush’s tax cuts because raising taxes would cost a million jobs.
So what changed???
Apparently the ruse has run it’s course and now the time has finally come to raise taxes:
House Speaker John Boehner said late Saturday that he couldn’t move ahead with a $4 trillion deal because President Obama was insisting on a $1 trillion tax increase, and the White House quickly denounced House Republicans for scuttling debt reduction and preventing “the very wealthiest and special interests from paying their fair share.”
Here’s an idea via Tim Carney of the Examiner, as long as we’re talking about people “paying their fair share”:
…why don’t Republicans declare war on corporate welfare, putting the president in the position of defending his Reverse-Robin Hood policies? Obama wants to soak the rich by raising their taxes? Why not soak big business by taking away their taxpayer-funded goodies?
Start with the handouts such as billions in direct grants, in the name of “green energy,” to big, well-connected companies like Florida Power & Light. Then there are the green energy loan guarantees, also enriching revolving-door lobbyists and Big Business.
Along the same lines, Republicans could block this year’s reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, a corporate-welfare agency that Obama has been steadily expanding. A majority of all of Ex-Im’s loans and long-term guarantees subsidize Boeing sales. Banks love this agency, too, because it provides private profit and socialized risk.
Imagine Republicans running to protect taxpayers and reduce the debt by abolishing Ex-Im, while Obama stands with Boeing, GE and Halliburton in preserving this Fannie Mae for manufacturers.
Speaking of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Republicans should try to end those sinkholes. Let Obama, the Realtor lobby and the banks stick up for corporate welfare. Ending ethanol supports would be another no-brainer.
But it’s not just handouts Republicans should target. Many regulations serve as gifts to Big Business and theft from small businesses and consumers.
Rush is pushing his own tax proposals on his show, today, hoping Boehner and Cantor take up his ideas which include increasing taxes on unions.
I can only shake my head at the grim spectacle of Dem confusion and consternation at the “unexpectedly” bad job situation – (2.4 Million Fewer Americans Working Now Than When Obama Signed Economic Stimulus), when what’s happening is so obviously a direct result of their own policies.
Obama’s EPA chief Lisa Jackson is set to push ahead with stricter and more business/industry oppressive restrictions, regulations and rules that will do nothing to boost job growth and the economy. Rather, it will make it far worse. However, come to find out the EPA funds the environmental groups that file lawsuits…
When the Environmental Protection Agency said in late June that it would force Western coal-fired power plants to install haze-reducing pollution-control equipment at a cost of $1.5 billion a year, it said it had to in order to settle a lawsuit by environmental groups.
One organization involved in the suit, the Environmental Defense Fund, has a long history of taking the EPA to court. In fact, a cursory review finds almost half a dozen cases in the past 10 years.
The odd thing is that the EPA, in turn, has handed EDF $2.76 million in grants over that same period, according to an IBD review of the agency’s grant database.
This strange relationship goes well beyond EDF. Indeed, several environmental groups that have received millions in EPA grants regularly file suit against that same agency…
The EPA even tacitly encourages such suits, going so far as to pay for and promote a “Citizen’s Guide” that, among other things, explains how to sue the agency under “citizen suit” provisions in environmental laws. The guide’s author — the Environmental Law Institute — has received $9.9 million in EPA grants over the past decade.
And, to top it off, critics say the EPA often ends up paying the groups’ legal fees under the Equal Access to Justice Act.
See also The Foundry: Five Ways Obama Tanked Employment.
Conservatives never bought Obama’s repeated boasts of being a mega tax slasher: “At least 16 tax cuts to small businesses” were in the Stimulus, he likes to crow. Those tax credits and gimmicks turned out to be largely unhelpful at a time when he was planning massive tax increases in ObamaCare.
See the WSJ for the non-exhaustive list of ObamaCare’s tax increases: Taxes Upon Taxes Upon . . .
The economic ironies are also, well, rich. Mr. Obama is now pushing to reduce the payroll tax by two-percentage points for another year to boost the economy, but he’s already built in a big increase in that same payroll tax for 2013. So if a payroll tax cut creates jobs this year, why doesn’t a payroll tax increase destroy jobs after 2013?
Mr. Obama is also touting spending cuts he’s willing to make in entitlements in return for bigger tax increases, yet the spending increases built into ObamaCare aren’t even up for discussion in the debt-limit talks. The Affordable Care Act adds more than 30 million more Americans onto Medicaid’s rolls, when that program is already growing by 6.5% this year. So Mr. Obama is willing to cut current entitlements on grounds that they are unaffordable, but he’s taken what may be the most expensive entitlement off the table.
Meanwhile, Democrats want to continue the spending spree that got us into this mess…
Omri Ceren at Commentary Contentions asks a good question –if Dems think spending is important to recovery, why do they want to cut Defense? Democrats’ Incoherent Push to Cut Defense:
It’s mindblowing that Democrats simultaneously push for $700 billion in defense cuts while demanding government retain its expansionary spending programs. Those Republicans willing to trade robust national security to avert tax hikes have deeply flawed priorities, but at least these are identifiable priorities that can be debated.
But Democrats are pushing for cuts in military spending while insisting we need more overall spending. They support increased spending because they believe large government outlays – in the Keynesian sense, where we should pay people to dig holes rather than let scared money remain on the sidelines — are good. That belief borders on sheer incoherence. And they’re doing it just as a Democratic President has embraced a doctrine that advocates the use of force, permitting open-ended unilateral warfare, based solely on humanitarian grounds. The president now decides on Tuesdays to go to war on Fridays. So we may actually need some weapons sooner or later.
George Will spoke for many yesterday in his response to Democrat strategist and ABC contributor Donna Brazile, who predictably blamed the current debt ceiling impasse on Republicans and their refusal to raise taxes:
DONNA BRAZILE, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST, ABC AND CNN CONTRIBUTOR: He put it on the table, the Republicans came into the room, got their appetizers and said, “You know what? Main course, we’ll just walk away.” Maybe tonight the President will serve dessert. It’s after six o’clock, George, I should be cooking.
GEORGE WILL: Before we have a moratorium I hope on the can metaphor, let’s look at who’s been kicking the can down the road. Democrats started kicking the can down the road when they stopped writing budgets. The President kicked the can down the road by appointing a deficit commission. Then he kicked it again down the road by ignoring the deficit commission. Then he submitted a budget in February that no one on either side of the House would support that promised to increase the deficit. That’s a lot of kicking. That’s can abuse.
The end game has always been to inflict a European style socialism on the United States. Never mind the fact that Europe is currently imploding under the weight of its welfare state.
The antidote to Obama’s poison pills: The Foundry, Morning Bell:
Washington can start on the path toward liberating that entrepreneurial capacity by making the right decisions on the debt limit. Higher taxes aren’t the right direction; cutting spending is.
Heritage’s James Sherk and Rea Hederman write that “Creating a hostile or favorable business climate is a policy choice . . . The tax and regulatory burden is a policy choice made by the government. If America creates a French-style social welfare state that erects barriers to entrepreneurship, then America will also get French levels of unemployment.”
America doesn’t have to be France. It doesn’t have to carry a European-style debt and tax burden. But the White House and congressional leaders must choose to enact policies that reject a European-style future.
Boehner laid it all out in his statement broadcast just a few moments ago:
He said Republicans are not against ending corporate tax loopholes (he doesn’t like those either) but is dead set against raising taxes on the job producers. Good and good. He noted that we can’t default on our debt, and is hoping to hash out a deal with the President.
Stiffen your spine, sir.
Obama entire strategy is to make Boehner cave. The 2012 election depends on it.
Obama said in his statement that the American people are too busy with their day to day lives to pay attention to whats going on in the budget talks.
Interesting theory. I can tell you that a perfect stranger that my husband and I shared a table with at the dinner theater last night, was paying very close attention. And he was rooting for Boehner.
(Still listening to Obama)…Good Gad, the master of economic disaster is obviously still trying to position himself as “the adult at the table”.
Candidate Obama’s promises to be fiscally responsible: “We can’t mortgage our children’s future on a mountain of debt.”
Yeah he said that.
See what I mean by not believing a word he says?
The man is clearly losing it….
11:22 a.m. ET – @LisaDCNN: OBAMA-TAXES: Nobody has talked about increasing taxes now or next yr. We have talked about closing loopholes in 2013.
Then 9 minutes later told reporters that we need to increase revenues (taxes):
11:31 a.m. ET – “It is hard to persuade people to do hard stuff that includes trimming benefits and increasing revenues” Obama said. “Reason we have a problem now is people keep avoiding hard things.”
“Can you control government spending without reforming entitlements?”
“Do you need to raise taxes to get control of spending?”
For House Speaker John Boehner, the answer is a resounding “No.”
video via Freedom’s Lighthouse
Obama statement via Weasel Zippers: Professional politicians understand the debt crisis better than the public:
That’s what he’s counting on…the ignorance of the proles always seems to work in the Dems’ favor.