December 14, 2012

IBD: There Are No Spending Cuts, Just Increases

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:46 am

In a Thursday evening editorial (bolds are mine):

President Obama has said repeatedly that any deal struck to avoid the fiscal cliff must be “fair and balanced.” But his proposals so far have been neither, and in fact do nothing to alter our suicidal fiscal course.

With help from the media, this White House and Democrats in Congress have focused relentlessly on raising taxes on the so-called rich — though doing so will yield only $40 billion a year. Compared to annual deficits topping $1 trillion, that’s chump change.

Republicans have encouraged them by first agreeing to look for “additional” revenue and then agreeing to raise taxes on higher-income Americans to get Democrats to go along with a deal.

But the more they offer, the more Democrats want. They smell weakness. That’s why Obama has offered virtually no cuts over the next 10 years — despite a campaign in which he vowed to cut $2.50 in spending for every $1 raised with higher taxes.

Instead, in one of the great switcheroos of all time, Obama now proposes $4 in spending increases for every dollar of extra tax revenue. Call us simplistic, but shouldn’t “balance” include spending cuts?

In fact, the main reason we have a “fiscal cliff” at all is that the government has spent wildly for four years, premised on the long-discredited idea that more government spending creates economic growth.

New data from GOP members of the Senate Budget Committee show just how bad it will get in the future — and how unserious Obama’s proposals have been.

Over the next 10 years, Obama’s plan would tack $8.6 trillion onto our nation’s debt — despite a $1.6 trillion tax hike coupled with a handful of “cuts.” And those cuts are little better than doing nothing.

Indeed, the Congressional Budget Office says that if we did nothing at all, U.S. debt would reach an unsustainable $25.8 trillion by 2022. Sound bad? Under the president’s sketchy plan, that falls to — drum roll, please — $25.4 trillion.

President Obama is turning the fiscal cliff into the system-collapsing Cloward-Piven cliff. It’s becoming virtually impossible to believe that it’s not deliberate.

Friday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (121412)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:05 am

Rules are here. Possible comment fodder may follow later. Other topics are also fair game.

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Positivity: Oregon Mall Shooting Hero Gets Woman to Safety, Evacuated Others

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 6:00 am

From Clackamas, Oregon (HT Daryn Kagan):

Wed, Dec 12, 2012 8:27 AM EST

A store employee at the Clackamas Town Center mall used his knowledge of the shopping complex to hustle a customer out of the building during Tuesday’s shooting rampage and then twice went back inside to guide other shoppers to exits and safety.

Allan Fonseca, who works at Lancome counter in Macy’s and was waiting on Jocelyn Lay when they heard shots fired about 3:30 p.m. Thinking quickly, Fonseca got her behind the counter to hide.

“We both just looked at each other and knew that this was a serious situation and it was a gunman and we both just dove down below the Lancome counter there for a little protection,” Lay told “Good Morning America.” “And the gunfire just kept going off.”

Lay said that she began praying for the Lord to protect her and the other shoppers in the mall. She said Fonseca, as a store employee, knew exactly what to do, and she credits him as her hero.

“He said that we needed to evacuate, and he took me by the hand and took me down the escalator and out to safety,” she said.

Once Fonseca was sure that she was safe, he then turned to her and said, “I’m going to go back and help other people.”

Fonseca said that because he is familiar with the exits in the mall, he felt that he would be able to help shoppers escape the gunfire.

“I felt that if I knew how to get out of the mall and out to safety then I should share that knowledge with everyone else, like the shoppers that don’t come here regularly and don’t know all of the exits,” he said. “So I decided to go back up because I wanted to see if there was anybody in panic or didn’t know where to do.”

Fonseca returned to the mall and evacuated the lower level of the Macy’s store, and then went back up to the “shooting floor” to look for his co-workers. Lay says she’s not sure she would have done if he hadn’t been there to get her out of harm’s way. …

Go here for the rest of the story.