Reagan’s Regret, Reprised

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Tom Maguire @ JustOneMinute:

After months of hectoring us about fiscal sanity and intransigent Republicans, the NY Times discovers inflexible Democrats:

Efforts to Curb Social Spending Face Resistance

By Robert Pear

WASHINGTON — President Obama’s re-election and Democratic gains in Congress were supposed to make it easier for the party to strike a deal with Republicans to resolve the year-end fiscal crisis by providing new leverage. But they could also make it harder as empowered Democrats, including some elected on liberal platforms, resist significant changes in entitlement programs like Social Securityand Medicare.

This should hardly be a surprise – Nancy Pelosi spent a year thinkingshe could reclaim the House by demonize entitlement cuts and defending Medicare.

So away we go. One reason Republicans have taken a hard line on trading tax hikes for spending cuts is their belief that Reagan was duped by the Democratic House in 1982 into accepting future spending cuts that never materialized. Current Republican thinkers and leaders remain confident that Washington is much more competent and diligent about raising taxes and collecting the revenue than it is about cutting spending. (The Doc Fix in Medicare is a classic example of legislated savings that, year by year, never actually materialize.)

And might such a trade of tax hikes today for spending cuts later (or never) happen in the run-up to the fiscal cliff? Sen. Richard Durbingives us a hint as to where the rest of Obama’s party is:

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Curt served in the Marine Corps for four years and has been a law enforcement officer in Los Angeles for the last 24 years.

3 Responses to “Reagan’s Regret, Reprised”

  1. 1


    In another thread, Greg said this:

    It’s really very simple: It won’t be possible to convince 90 percent of Americans to accept necessary spending cuts affecting them personally, unless the wealthiest are also seen to be making some personal sacrifice. This is the political reality of the situation.

    Republicans firmly believe democrats will go along with tax increases. We have absolutely no faith at all that any cuts in spending will be forthcoming. Even in this article, Obama is calling for $25 billion more in stimulus spending. Why would anyone want to give more money to the government that spends it so frivolously? And for those that do, write a check. There is nothing stopping you.

  2. 2



    I’m just sitting here wondering how cutting out the funding for Reid’s cowboy poetry affects me.

    Meanwhile, I surely know how an increase in the top tax rates will affect me.

  3. 3


    Same here. I’m not considered wealthy, but I do ok. Like many people, I employ people to do things for me that I could probably do myself. Yard work, pool work, pest control, and other little things. The people that do those jobs are being hammered right now and it’s going to get worse. That’s how the economy works. I think everyone knows a person that owns one of those mobile car wash set ups. They come by our office all the time. They will wash your car or truck for a pretty reasonable price. They used to come here and wash 20+ cars every couple of weeks. People had the extra cash and were willing to pay someone to do it for them. Now they might get two or three cars every couple of weeks. I don’t understand why people can’t realize how an economy works. But at the very basic level, that’s it in a nutshell.

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