July 15, 2011

Fundamentalism means never having to compromise

After all, when you know the ultimate truth, compromising with lesser beings is pretty silly. I get that. But of course, these people don't actually have the ultimate truth, and their methods have been clearly ineffective. Of course, I am talking about Republicans on taxes.

Jesus. I get it. As Tracy Jordan once said on 30 Rock, "I get it, Jack, Republicans want less taxes, more guns, and the end of the gun tax." And I get how tax cuts can be effective in certain situations. The idea of "supply side" economics is to encourage the "supply" of goods--with the theory being that if you have a supply problem, incenting or encouraging production and investment will then benefit from demand. But the problem with Republicans is that they have decided that every economic situation could benefit from more supply. But in this recession, supply has never been the problem. Inventory has stacked up because people lack the ability to consume. That is the demand side, not the supply side, and merits a different approach.

But for modern Republicans, there is no economic problem that cannot be solved by a tax cut. Even when it won't work. And that has led to this kind of unbelievable zeal that puts, as Meyerson notes, tax cuts over even helping the disabled or the poor. Ever.
In Minnesota, a state with a Democratic governor and a Republican legislature, Gov. Mark Dayton sought to raise taxes on only the relative handful of Minnesotans with annual incomes in excess of $1 million. The legislature opposed that, insisting on cuts (including to services for those with disabilities) that Dayton wouldn’t countenance.
Or in California where Jerry Brown offered to deregulate some areas and even cut state pensions if Republicans would allow the people to decide on tax increases. But Republicans have decided no tax cuts, ever.

Here is the funny thing. Every Republican I have talked to in person claims that they are not opposed to raising some taxes. Yet their leadership drives us off a cliff. Somehow I don't think the elected Republicans fear their base leaving them. So I am not sure I trust my Republican friends that much.

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