Sunday, September 18, 2005

Knave Calls Fool a Fool

President Bush claims that the Federal government can pay for the approximately $200 Million that it will spend on Katrina-related relief by cutting costs in other, presumably domestic, programs. To anyone even remotely knowledgeable about the Federal budget, this claim is laughable. Typically, however, the Republicans have, regardless of how preposterous White House claims were, toed the party line and said something along the lines of "Well, that sound's ok to me."

Apparently not this time.

Via Centerfield, we learn that even the exterminator doesn't buy this baloney:
House Majority Leader Tom DeLay said yesterday that Republicans have done so well in cutting spending that he declared an "ongoing victory," and said there is simply no fat left to cut in the federal budget.

Mr. DeLay was defending Republicans' choice to borrow money and add to this year's expected $331 billion deficit to pay for Hurricane Katrina relief. Some Republicans have said Congress should make cuts in other areas, but Mr. DeLay said that doesn't seem possible

"My answer to those that want to offset the spending is sure, bring me the offsets, I'll be glad to do it. But nobody has been able to come up with any yet," the Texas Republican told reporters at his weekly briefing.
The full reportage can be found here.

Katrina has confronted us with a real and concrete problem: There's simply too much spending and not enough tax income in the Federal budget. Even true believers such as DeLay can do the simple arithmatic. More astute (and intellectually honest) observers, such as Daniel Schaviro are getting shrill:
I would say that a calamitous Weimar Germany-style crisis involving hyper-inflation and the collapse of US government credit has become both significantly more likely to happen, and likely to happen sooner. Barring a dramatic change in the rate of healthcare expenditure growth, which would have to happen on its own since no one in Washington is addressing it, we have known for quite a while that the US is going to face fiscal collapse UNLESS Congress and the President address it responsibly in time, and in the interim retain credibility with financial markets as planning to address it responsibly.
This means that, at the least, that there will likely be a serious effort to rollback the Bush tax cuts for the rich. As a practical matter, I think that the estate tax repeal and the income tax cut that was making its way to the Senate via the reconciliation bill are both dead or, perhaps in the case of the reconciliation bill, on life support.

Above all, it means that knaves and fools will find it increasingly difficult to keep on putting out happy talk that is so obviously nothing more than happy horseshit, since even they don't believe their own lies any longer.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Roll back tax cuts for tax lawyers. Heck, increase taxes for tax lawyers after the roll back of cuts. Then take their first born (male & female), pets, but leave the spouse.