Maddow Breaks Down Obama Tax Plan, Dumping of "Buffett Rule" on New Chris Hayes Show
Here's another enjoyable clip from Chris Hayes' new show, with Rachel Maddow this morning chatting about the proposed new tax for millionaires and deficits and other relevant sundries:
I agree with them for the most part on this, but I will say that I have a bit of a squeamish feeling about flogging the idea of "fairness" in the current context too much. From what I can see, it adds up to asking people who are already falling behind to join in the "shared sacrifice" with those who have been doing extremely well at their expense for a couple of decades now. Basically it's asking millionaires to fork over a tiny bit of their wealth, which they won't even notice, in exchange for asking average people to give up a measurable piece of their meager financial security. That just doesn't seem like "fairness" to me. In an age of extreme income inequality that features dramatic erosion of the middle class downward, I find it hard to accept that it's particularly important to ensure that the wealthy don't feel they're being taken advantage of.
But I do agree with Maddow and Hayes that regardless of where you come down on this, agreeing to "fix" Medicare and Social Security's projected shortfalls in 20 or 30 years in this political environment is a sucker's game. It's being thrown into the deal based upon this absurd notion that businesses are so concerned about debt levels and possible regulations that they are holding back current growth, so if the government agrees to do this difficult task of cutting the programs now, they'll all be relieved and start hiring. (See post below)
We know that's utter nonsense. So, this is a con game and the only question is whether the Democrats are being conned or are among the conmen. If I didn't know that the administration has been determined to do this Grand Bargain from the beginning, I might buy the idea that they are being snookered into selling off the future to buy some cooperation to fix today's problems. But I do.