President Obama, ahead of his first press conference since winning re-election and a meeting later this week with congressional leaders, staked out his starting point for fiscal cliff negotiations — $1.6 trillion in tax hikes.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney made clear that the president is sticking by his original budget plan, which includes $1.6 trillion in new revenue, by raising taxes on households making more than $250,000.
“The president has put forward a very specific plan that will be what he brings to the table when he sits down with congressional leaders,” Carney said.
The president goes for the jugular while demanding “compromise” and “bipartisanship”…from the other side, of course. He hasn’t given an inch since day one. Wish the GOP had the same backbone.
The president made clear he would accept nothing less than higher taxes on the wealthy.
“I’m open to compromise. I’m open to new ideas. I’m committed to solving our fiscal challenges, but I refuse to accept any approach that isn’t balanced.”
Funny how the Leftist agenda is always touted as “balanced,” and liberty-respecting, free market solutions are always “extreme.” These people know how to manipulate the language, and the media plays right along. It’s time to beat them at their own game.
Joel Pollack observes that such an outrageous opening bid proves that Obama isn’t interested in a compromise:
President Barack Obama has responded to House Speaker John Boehner’s gesture last week towards reaching a deal to avoid the Jan. 1 “fiscal cliff” of tax hikes and spending cuts, putting a specific demand on the table: $1.6 trillion in new tax revenues, reached by raising tax rates on the wealthy in addition to other “tax revenues.” The offer is twice as high as a deal Obama scuttled last year, suggesting he may be prepared to let talks fail again.
[...] Obama’s actual offer, however, indicates that he is spoiling for a fight. He clearly hopes to use his re-election to assert greater leverage within the talks–though Boehner’s Republicans, too, were returned to power by the same electorate. His goal is not merely to reach a compromise at a higher number than the $800 billion deal that fell through last time; rather, his aim is to force Republicans to agree to the higher tax rates necessary to reach that number.
It has nothing to do with raising revenue and everything to do ideology: those “evil” rich people have to be brought down and their wealth confiscated to create an “equitable” Marxist utopia.
Erika Johnsen remarks at Hot Air, “Just so we’re clear, we all understand these tax hikes would accomplish zilch, right?”
Yes, by all means, let’s be serious — and acknowledge that tax hikes on the wealthiest among us is not going to accomplish anything even remotely meaningful in terms of long-term deficit reduction. Talking about how expensive the two wars have been and ginning up populist resentments (Obama likes to add the “rich people like me” bit to fend off claims of class-warmongering, but the “fairness” implication is of course still there) while consistently failing to produce any concrete plans except on how the government can spend more money, is not a solution. The hit on economic growth that will come at the cost of steepening our already graduated income tax is a much less effective way of increasing revenue than the lowered taxes that would allow the economy to grow at a more robust rate and bring more people into the middle and upper tax brackets (and with the president’s proposed arrangements, we can count on more of the same economic stagnation that only adds people to the food stamp/unemployment benefits/etcetera welfare rolls and deepens our fiscal woe).
As Conn Carroll aptly reminds us, sure, the Congressional Budget Office has projected that allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire for the wealthy could bring in as much as $824 billion over ten years (which, given that it’s from the CBO, I’d wager is a somewhat rosy estimate). But when you put that in the context of, oh yeah, Obama’s been running up trillion-dollar deficits every year of his presidency, you can see what a hugely insurmountable problem this is.
Obama said his re-election proves that voters want the wealthy to pay more in taxes. In reality, it proves that the people who voted for Obama are breaking the commandments not to covet or steal. Hiring a politician to steal on your behalf doesn’t make it moral or constitutional. Not that Obama or the Democrats give a damn – promising to steal and “redistribute” other people’s hard-earned money is what keep them in power. In their minds, it all belongs to the government anyway, and we should all lick the boots of the ruling class in gratitude for whatever crumbs they let us keep.
Think they’ll just go after “the rich” and leave you alone? Think again. Once you surrender the property rights of someone else, you surrender your own, as well.
They’re just getting started.
Cross posted a ThoughtsFromAConservativeMom.com
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