27 March 2009

They Got Nuthin’

I don’t think I’ve seen a more pathetic display of a party with absolutely nothing new to say than yesterday’s rollout of the Republican “fudgeit.”

Normally, it’s the Democrats you can count on for uninspiring or inept press conferences (circa Tim Geithner about two weeks ago, anyone?), but this bad circus (beautifully dissected by Rachel Maddow) was just unremittingly sad. It reminded me of the kid who wrote his book report on the bus an hour before he had to present it, and having not read the book he has to stick to the most broad generalities possible.

I thought the Republicans used to be good at being the minority/opposition party. When you look amateur compared to the Green Party, you’ve got problems!

So they pass out this “blueprint” which really has nothing much in it, no ... you know ... numbers of any kind, except for one -- striking by its inclusion. The proposed Republican budget has no comment on deficits, paying for Iraq and Afghanistan, or any of that stuff -- though they’ve scheduled the details to be delivered on April 1st (no I’m not kidding) -- but they do have at least one specific proposal: lowering the tax bracket to 25% on people making more than $100,000.

How interesting that that’s where they go to first.

This is yet another of those things that sound good for about 10 seconds (particularly if you make $100,000/year or more), but then you think about it.

Bush and Cheney, in eight years in office (six of them with total Republican control) managed to lower the tax rate on the wealthy from 38% to 35% (roughly), resulting in the biggest deficits the world has ever seen. Cutting it another 10% would, quite frankly, destroy America as we know it more effectively than a million Bin Ladens.

I’m all for cutting waste or simplifying the tax code, but this would gut almost every program the government engages in, particularly entitlements, education and infrastructure (I would have said that the cuts needed to fund this boondoggle would eliminate the defense department and the military entirely, but you know the Republican will find a way to keep at least that going -- can’t afford to feed the hungry, but there’s always room for another war!).

Nate Silver has broken it down for you, but really I encourage you to download and read the actual document itself -- unfiltered, as it were.

Then enjoy this DNC web ad lampooning it:

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