Charles Krauthammer writes about the Swindle of the Year (emphasis added),
Barack Obama won the great tax-cut showdown of 2010 – and House Democrats don’t have a clue that he did. In the deal struck this week, the president negotiated the biggest stimulus in American history, larger than his $814 billion 2009 stimulus package. It will pump a trillion borrowed Chinese dollars into the U.S. economy over the next two years – which just happen to be the two years of the run-up to the next presidential election. This is a defeat?
Some Republicans are crowing that Stimulus II is the Republican way – mostly tax cuts – rather than the Democrats’ spending orgy of Stimulus I. That’s consolation? This just means that Republicans are two years too late. Stimulus II will still blow another near-$1 trillion hole in the budget.
At great cost that will have to be paid after this newest free lunch, the package will add as much as 1 percent to GDP and lower the unemployment rate by about 1.5 percentage points. That could easily be the difference between victory and defeat in 2012.
Obama is no fool. While getting Republicans to boost his own reelection chances, he gets them to make a mockery of their newfound, second-chance, post-Bush, Tea-Party, this-time-we’re-serious persona of debt-averse fiscal responsibility.
And he gets all this in return for what? For a mere two-year postponement of a mere 4.6-point increase in marginal tax rates for upper incomes. And an estate tax rate of 35 percent – it jumps insanely from zero to 55 percent on Jan. 1 – that is somewhat lower than what the Democrats wanted.
Take a look at the pork:
-Indian employment tax credit.
-New markets tax credit.
-Railroad track maintenance credit.
-Mine rescue team training credit.
-7-year recovery period for motorsports entertainment complexes.
-Accelerated depreciation for business property on an Indian reservation.
-Election to expense mine safety equipment.
-Special expensing rules for certain film and television productions.
-Expensing of environmental remediation costs.
-Deduction allowable with respect to income attributable to domestic production activities in Puerto Rico.
-Tax incentives for investment in the District of Columbia.
-Temporary increase in limit on cover over of rum excise taxes to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
-American Samoa economic development credit.
Andrew Malcolm has more on the Congressional ship of fools,
Because after a few days of chuckling and gloating over taking the Obama White House to the cleaners with the deal to extend, among other things, the Bush era tax cuts of eight years of failed policies fame, a number of prominent conservative voices are now awakening in opposition.
They’ve added up the costs of all the provisions, including 56 more weeks of unemployment insurance for millions.
And they realize that the total bill of the bill is larger than the original Pelosi-Reid stimulus bill’s bill that accomplished so little. And they realize now that nearly a trillion new dollars will be added to the deficit that the newly elected GOP folks are coming to town to tame.
I hadn’t posted on this because I simply couldn’t find the words to crystallize my contempt for the Congressional idiots that went along with this spendulus. But they are not idiots, they are politicians. As Melissa points out,
The Republicans in Congress are also statists. That is, they absolutely love their power. They love spending your money, too. And they know the jig is up, or they at least have to pretend it’s up in January. So they have a small window to get through a massive spending bill where they can still blame the Democrats if the economy doesn’t turn around.
Same old, same old, politics. And the Americans are screwed, again.
Something very, very weird is going on in Washington *UPDATED* – you can say that again!