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Morning Bell: Taxpayers Should Be More Than a Little Scared

Posted By Conn Carroll On March 20, 2009 @ 8:07 am In Ongoing Priorities | Comments Disabled

Maybe Jay Leno should host Meet the Press. Bowling and canine questions [1] aside, Leno pressed [2] President Barack Obama hard on the House’s vote to strip AIG employees of their retention bonuses via the tax code:

Well, here’s something that kind of scared me. Today they passed this thing that says we’re going to tax 90 percent of these bonuses. And the part that scares me is, I mean, you’re a good guy — if the government decides they don’t like a guy, all of a sudden, hey, we’re going to tax you and then, boom, and it passes. I mean, that seems a little scary as a taxpayer.

And taxpayers should be scared by this Administration. Especially considering Obama’s answer:

I think that the best way to handle this is to make sure that you’ve closed the door before the horse gets out of the barn. … The change I’d like to see in terms of tax policy is that we have a system, going back to where we were back in the 1990s, where you and I who are doing pretty well pay a little bit more to pay for health care, to pay for energy, to make sure that kids can go to college who aren’t as fortunate as our — as my kids might be. Those are the kinds of measured steps that we can take.

Translation: the only problem Obama has with Congress targeting specific groups for astronomical tax hikes is that they didn’t do it early enough! And there is nothing “measured” about the steps Obama wants the federal government to take. The Obama Administration budget: [3] 1) increases government spending by $1 trillion over the next decade; 2) permanently expands the federal government by nearly 3 percent of gross domestic product; 3) raises taxes for 3.2 million taxpayers by an average of $300,000 over the next decade; 4) raises taxes on all Americans by $1.4 trillion over the next decade; 5) leaves permanent deficits averaging $600 billion even after the economy recovers; and 6) doubles the publicly held national debt to over $15 trillion.

When pressed earlier in the day at a rally in Los Angeles about whether the federal government’s borrow and spend policies might “create here a chance that we may follow in the footsteps of Iceland and one day just simply be broke [4]all Obama could do was attack the previous administration [4]: “[W]hen I hear some folks from the other party in Congress start howling about the deficits, I’m starting to think, well, where have you been? What have you been doing?”

The Bush Administration and the Tom DeLay Congress will have to speak for themselves, but true conservatives fought against the explosion of Washington spending every step of the way. The Heritage Foundation was opposed to the idea that more federal spending and control were good for education. We opposed the idea that more federal spending and control were necessary for transportation. And we so opposed the idea the Medicare ought to be expanded to include prescription drugs that DeLay banned Heritage research from his office.

But enough about the past. Looking ahead to the future, both the Democrat controlled Senate Budget Committee and the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office offered some stark reality to contrast with Obama’s Hollywood budget pitch. Senate Democrats say that Obama’s budget will push federal deficits “as much as $1.6 trillion higher [5]” than the Obama Administration claims. The CBO places [6] the number at $1 trillion. The Obama Administration is not going to cut any of its spending priorities. So yes Jay, you should be scared … you and every other taxpayer should be very, very scared.

Quick Hits:

  • The Obama Administration announced another $5 billion in bailouts [7]; this time for auto suppliers.
  • Credit-rating companies, widely assailed for their role in fueling the financial crisis with overly rosy debt ratings, stand to make a billion-dollar windfall [8] in the Obama Administration’s latest attempt to heal the credit markets.
  • Earl A. Devaney, head of the RAT Board [9] (the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board) said: “Logic would suggest there’s going to be a loss of money to fraud and waste with this amount of money going around.”
  • Another day, another Obama Administration appointee needs a waiver [10] to skirt Obama’s own ethics policy.
  • According to Rasmussen Reports [11], 50% of U.S. voters now say they are more worried that the government will do too much in reacting to the nation’s economic problems rather than not enough.

Article printed from The Foundry: Conservative Policy News from The Heritage Foundation: http://blog.heritage.org

URL to article: http://blog.heritage.org/2009/03/20/morning-bell-taxpayers-should-be-more-than-a-little-scared/

URLs in this post:

[1] Bowling and canine questions: http://features.csmonitor.com/politics/2009/03/19/president-obama-makes-a-special-olympics-joke-staffer-apologizes/

[2] pressed: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123752189482892841.html?mod=article-outset-box

[3] The Obama Administration budget:: http://www.heritage.org/Research/Budget/bg2249.cfm

[4] create here a chance that we may follow in the footsteps of Iceland and one day just simply be broke: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2009/03/obama-text-la.html

[5] as much as $1.6 trillion higher: http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-obama-budget20-2009mar20,0,1486768.story

[6] places: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0309/20203.html

[7] another $5 billion in bailouts: http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/2009-03-19-auto-suppliers_N.htm

[8] stand to make a billion-dollar windfall: http://blog.heritage.org http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123751980140092361.html

[9] the RAT Board: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/03/19/AR2009031903360.html

[10] another Obama Administration appointee needs a waiver: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0309/20253.html

[11] Rasmussen Reports: http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/business/economic_stimulus_package/50_worry_government_will_do_too_much_to_help_the_economy

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