Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A call for some rationality in November 2012

Just about this time last year, Republicans demonstrated that they were prepared to block extension of the tax cuts for the middle class unless the tax cuts for the wealthy were also included. Going back a little down memory lane, we'd note that those tax cuts had been passed under the Bush presidency prior to the economic meltdown we all experienced in 2008/09. So in other words, they did nothing to prevent that from happening. AND, there was never any attempt to pay for them.

Fast forward to today, and we find the Republicans - just 12 months later - blocking an attempt to extend the payroll tax cuts, which would disproportionately aid the middle class. I've tried my best to understand what their objections are...seriously. But the truth is, all I can see is that it comes down to this:

"The rank-and-file members are extremely opposed to it," said the GOP source, adding that most members were concerned with the uncertainty caused by just a two-month extension, as well as the political benefit the White House could gain in the national dialogue over taxes.
(Emphasis mine)

Now grant you, they're saying they don't like the "uncertainty" of a 2 month extension instead of a full year. But it was the Republicans who insisted on shortening the time line in the first place. Its a classic example of damned if you do, damned if you don't - which only reinforces that its all about denying the WH a "win."

I say all of this because as Americans we are going to have some choices to make next November. When it comes to voting for a President and members of Congress, those choices are likely to come down to folks with either a (D) or an (R) after their names. While we may not be in love with the person who has a (D) after their name, these are the kinds of things we should think about: Do we personally want to contribute to the Republican efforts to kill the economy in order to protect the 1% and score political points against an opponent? Or do we want to support the folks who are attempting to move the ball down the line for all of us an inch at a time?

That's what it comes down to folks. If you want better than that, I'd suggest you take off your slippers and put on your marching shoes...get into the game and either run yourself or work in your community to come up with better alternatives. That one will take some time. Meanwhile, lets at least be rational about our options.

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