Saturday, October 29, 2005

Republicans and Steve Martin

In one of his most famous monologues, Steve Martin explained how to become a millionaire:
You.. can be a millionaire.. and never pay taxes! You can be a millionaire.. and never pay taxes! You say.. "Steve.. how can I be a millionaire.. and never pay taxes?" First.. get a million dollars. Now.. you say, "Steve.. what do I say to the tax man when he comes to my door and says, 'You.. have never paid taxes'?" Two simple words. Two simple words in the English language: "I forgot!" How many times do we let ourselves get into terrible situations because we don't say "I forgot"? Let's say you're on trial for armed robbery. You say to the judge, "I forgot armed robbery was illegal." Let's suppose he says back to you, "You have committed a foul crime. you have stolen hundreds and thousands of dollars from people at random, and you say, 'I forgot'?" Two simple words: Excuuuuuse me!!"
Apparently the Republicans who control Congress have taken a page from Martin's book. This from the CBO in its analysis of Reconciliation Recommendations of the Senate Committee on Finance:
Section 6112 . . . would postpone payments for Medicare Part A and B benefits for six business days at the end of the fiscal year 2006. The provision would postpone—until October 2, 2006—payments that would otherwise be made by Medicare carriers and fiscal intermediaries during the period from September 22 through September 30, 2006. This provision would shift spending from 2006 to 2007 but would not affect total spending over the 2006-2010 or 2006-2015 periods.
In other words, in order to mask the federal deficit prior to the November, 2006 elections, the Republicans are going to shift expenses from one fiscal year to another to make the deficit appear smaller than it actually is.

Altogether now: Well, excuuuuuse me!!"

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