Written by: Josh Bernstein
Posted: Dec. 3rd, 2012
According to Wikipedia’s definition of the fiscal cliff Americans could suffer a little more short term pain for a lot more long term gain. Americans are used to suffering these last four years so what’s another few more?
The fiscal cliff by their definition is a number of different laws which if left unchanged could lead to tax increases, spending cuts, and a deficit reduction. Two out of the three are just what the doctor ordered. It is only the first one that could create a problem.
According to the United States Treasury Department the George W. Bush Tax Cuts are a major part of the solution not the problem. These tax cuts have become the political football for the Democrats to play with. They rail against them because they don’t fit their narrative however when push comes to shove they always vote to renew them. The Democrats never seem to suffer politically because the propagandist’s in the media always provide cover for them.
The Democrats treat the middle class like their red headed stepchildren. They use scare tactics like the fiscal cliff in order to keep voters on edge and loyal to their party. Then when the time is right they trash Republicans as being obstructionists and play the role of savior by saving the middle class from inevitable ruin by renewing the tax cuts. The best actors and actresses are not in Hollywood. They are in the Democratic Party.
The Bush Tax Cuts are not just a political football for Republicans to kick around; they are sound fiscal policy. They are proven job creators and have been tremendously beneficial to the middle class by shifting a larger share of the individual income taxes paid from lower income earners to higher income earners. These tax cuts have actually helped and in some cases even eliminated the tax burden on lower and middle income Americans. It is for this reason that these tax cuts need to be made permanent and a mandatory part of the negotiations. For more on this see this article. http://www.examiner.com/article/how-to-end-the-class-warfare-argument?cid=db_articles
The second part of the fiscal cliff is spending cuts. Do you hear the crickets? Of course spending cuts! The last time I check our deficit was almost 17 trillion with a capital T. Our government has been spending more than it has been taking in for years and it needs to stop. We need to cut all the wasteful programs out of our government and the ones we keep should be returned to the states where they could be run more efficiently.
Another thing we can do is to immediately restore the work requirement for welfare. Ronald Reagan once famously said, “Welfare’s purpose should be to eliminate, as far as possible, the need for its own existence. He then goes on to say, “The best and most effective social program the government can help create is a job.” Reagan left no ambiguity as to how he felt towards big government when he famously quipped, “In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.”
Being on welfare should never be a permanent financial solution for anyone. Removing the work requirement just adds to more government dependency which is exactly what most in the Democratic Party want. This policy is bad for the economy because it dramatically increases spending and allows recipients to become more complacent and ultimately makes it that much harder for people to get off of welfare. When government can’t solve a problem, they throw taxpayer’s money at it. Unfortunately for us it doesn’t provide solutions; it only exacerbates the problem.
The third part is deficit reduction. A constitutional amendment for a balanced budget would be a great start. If the Republicans were smart they would be bringing this up as a mandatory part of the negotiations. This is a winning issue and right now the Democrats are winning the fiscal cliff argument.
A balanced budget amendment to the Constitution will make future battles over fiscal policy much more transparent and opaque. The Democrats will not be able to move the goal posts like they do now and Republicans will be able to restore some resemblance of fiscal sanity. In addition, Republicans ought to be exposing all the horrible taxes that are just around the corner from the health care bill. If the Republican Party uses what little left they have in political capitol correctly than they can bypass the media and get the public on their side. A minority in Congress and a majority in America can create a majority in Congress.
Rather than raising taxes on job creators Republicans would be better off just letting the Democrats drive us over the fiscal cliff. By allowing this to happen maybe the American people will finally wake up and realize that liberal policies do not work. Republicans could than be in a stronger position to win in 2014 and beyond. The Republican Party and more importantly the country would benefit in the long run.
Republicans need to stand firm and call the Democrat’s bluff on the fiscal cliff. The Democrats will not allow the Bush tax cuts to expire. They know that if that happened the economy would go into an immediate recession. For political reasons if nothing else they won’t let that happen. However if it did happen along with spending cuts and a deficit reduction you would have the makings of a real recovery. And as the famous Meat Loaf song goes two out of three ain’t bad.