Why would we impose “job-crushing taxes” on wealthy Americans just to pay for luxuries like federal prisons? Why end the “carried interest” tax loophole for financiers, just to pay for unemployment benefits — especially when those same selfless tycoons are buying yachts and thus creating jobs for all the rest of us?
Hmmm. The truth is that House Republicans don’t actually go far enough. They should follow the logic of their more visionary members with steps like these:
BONUSES FOR BILLIONAIRES Republicans won’t extend unemployment benefits, even in the worst downturn in 70 years, because that makes people lazy about finding jobs. They’re right: We should be creating incentives for Americans to rise up the food chain by sending hefty checks to every new billionaire. This could be paid for with a tax surcharge on regular working folks. It’s the least we can do.
Likewise, the government should take sterner measures against the persistent jobless. Don’t just let their unemployment benefits expire. Take their homes!
Oh, never mind! Silly me! The banks are already doing that.
LET JOBS TRICKLE DOWN Leftist pundits say that House Republicans don’t have a jobs plan. That’s unfair! Granted, the Republican-sponsored Cut, Cap and Balance Act would eliminate 700,000 jobs in just its first year, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, but those analysts are no doubt liberals. America’s richest 400 people own more wealth than the bottom 150 million Americans, and the affluent would feel renewed confidence if the Republican plan passed. We’d see a hiring bonanza. Each of those wealthy people might hire an extra pool attendant. That’s 400 jobs right there!
Thank you, Mr. Kristof, for throwing this javelin at the balloon that is engulfing the Republican Party, especially the TeaParty wing. It is a balloon of perceptions and self-talk that any cartoonist would have a field day in dismantling.
However, yesterday, we learn that Michelle Bachmann is, in some states, leading the pack of Republican contenders for the White House. We also learn that, on the right itself, there are concerns about her "headaches" and those concerns are being thrown in her face by one of her opponents, Tim Pawlenty, the former governor of Minnesota. Michelle Bachmann is "the TeaParty candidate" and proud to be carrying that banner of empty rhetoric onto the stump, decrying the excessive of President Obama, while at the same time ignoring the history of her own party's excessive spending and a cuts, especially those that came in the presidency of Dubya, the one Bush family member who did not deserve to win the White House.
There is, in the TeaParty balloon, a complex of gases, fit to decompose the proud history and honour of a once vital nation. They include the gas of selfishness, and the gas of narcissism, and the gas of arrogance and the gas of the failure to grasp reality, while all the time pretending to have the only legitimate grasp of the very reality they are denying.
These are yahoo's, steeped in the Swiftian tradition of Gulliver. They are intellectual cretins, political tyrants, spoiled children and adolescent club-house oath-makers, compelling all of their members to replicate the worst of the former secret societies: to wit,
- a complete surrender to the mentality of the "pack,"
- a loyalty to the members of the club trumping the collective good of the whole town in which they reside, and
- a bank account that would make any sophomore from any private college proud to roll up to class in his own, monographed Ferrari, while his classmates foraged for hotdogs in the college cafeteria.
The U.N. yesterday declared an official "famine" in parts of Somalia, a notice that slipped past the reading glasses of these TeaPartiers, so focused are they on the famine they are trying to create in their own country.
Please keep up the good work, Mr. Kristof; the U.S. needs every instrument in its journalistic orchestra playing a tune of ridicule and harrassment and "balloon-pricking" as the titanic of state sails amid the whirlpools of vaccuity and the charybdis of superiority that challenge its survival.