Saturday, September 18, 2010

A Jaundiced Look At Mitch McConnell's Agenda For America

Back of the envelope calculations by one Howard Gleckman of the Tax Policy Center -- clear-eyed analysis of the right-wing agenda, as exemplified by Senate Republican Leader, Mitch McConnell. McConnell wants to extend the Bush-era tax cuts, wants to maintain Pentagon and Medicare spending, and he favors a constitutional balanced-budget amendment. Target year: 2020. I'll be 71. My son will be 39.

The Congressional Budget Office projects a $1.2 trillion deficit for 2020, and $5.5 trillion spending, of which three trillion Gleckman says would be for defense, Medicare, interest ($100 billion for interest on the extended tax cuts), military retirement, and veterans' benefits. Subtract the 1.2 trillion whose payment the proposed amendment would require, and you get about the same amount as projected Social Security payments. In other words, the government would be reduced to military, interest payments, and benefits to people my age.

When I was in Stillwater a week ago -- the upscale end of Minnesota's Sixth Congressional District, home of Representative Michele Bachman -- I walked past a t-shirt store with a front window full of cute slogans. One said, "Vegetarian: The member of the tribe who can't hunt, fish, or ride." Dat's pretty funny, Ole. You should put it on a t-shirt, doncha know.

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