"Things You Wouldn't Know If We Didn't Blog Intermittently."
Yeah, it's an amusing cartoon, but can anyone provide convincing evidence that restoring tax rates to what they were in, say, the 50s through the 70s, wouldn't in fact mostly solve the debt crisis?It also seems plain to me that the "crisis" is being driven almost entirely by one portion of the entitlement machinery, and that is the unreasonable inflation of health care costs. Which is why the CBO's scoring of Obamacare was so charitable, since it makes some efforts, of debatable efficacy, to rein in those costs. But it seems like what it actually might take is a robust public option, or opening up Medicare enrollment to everyone.
Just allowing the tax cuts for the rich to expire would vastly improve the "debt crisis" (which isn't nearly as big as it's portrayed by the deficit hawks). What we need right now is more government spending, not less. Severe budget cuts are almost certain to bring on another major recession, whereas government stimulus spending will revive the economy to the point where we can cut the budget efficiently without major damage.And le_sacre is right on: it's Medicare and Medicaid that are the "entitlement" problems, and they're problems only because of rising health care costs. That's what really needs to be reformed.Social Security doesn't contribute a cent to the deficit, nor is it in crisis. If nothing at all is done, it will be able to pay full benefits until 2037, then cut back to 78 percent. Even that cutback can be easily averted by raising the income cap from $105K to $180K.--Swift Loris
Two thumbs up to both commenters.Entitlements is a loaded term, but the entitlement at the root of our debt problems is that healthcare and pharmaceutical industries in the US feel entitled to outsize profit margins relative to those in all other modern countries.I would add, at a time when upper income tax rates are at their lowest levels and the concentration of wealth in the uppermost income brackets is at its highest levels, that we are not even talking about increasing taxes is a ludicrous monument to the success of Republican talking points.
As this blog has posited before, it's the military spending which should trimmed. http://www.truemajority.org/oreos/
What is ending two wars?