Some days, I find the whole thing ludicrous and immoral. Some days, I laugh. And sometimes it’s a little of both. As in today’s installment of fiscal Kabuki Theater.
The part that makes you laugh:
Republican Congressional leaders countered President Obama’s deficit reduction proposal with a plan to cut the deficit by $2.2 trillion over the next decade by raising $800 billion in revenue and cutting $1.2 trillion in spending.
Another $200 billion in savings would come from changing the way the government calculates inflation, which would slow benefit increases in programs from Medicare to Social Security and raise taxes by slowing the rise in tax brackets.
Speaker John A. Boehner, who has been under pressure to come up with a Republican alternative to the president’s proposal, called his offer “a credible plan that deserves serious consideration from the White House.” He dismissed what he described as Mr. Obama’s “La-La-Land offer” as something that couldn’t pass the Democratic Senate much less the Republican House. Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Senate Republican leader, said that he too backed Mr. Boehner’s approach.
Uh huh. If the president is in La-La land, then, Boehner is in a mental institution on the planet Uranus. “Credible”? Yes, his plan is entirely credible if he means to the Tea Party, lunatic fringe of the country.
The part that is ludicrous, though masked as reasonable by comparison:
“The Republican letter released today does not meet the test of balance. In fact, it actually promises to lower rates for the wealthy and sticks the middle class with the bill,” White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said in a statement, referring to a proposal laid out in a letter by House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner and other Republicans.