Sunday, February 8, 2009

Quick Update on the "Stimulus/Rescue Plan

by Norman Markowitz

Further press reports significantly reduce the amount of cuts from the original house bill to about 40 billion. But the cuts appear to be bad ones, namely cuts in aid to states and localities who are bearing the brunt of the crisis in the public sector and also to President Obama's "middle class" tax cut (which is aimed at working people, not upper income groups). If these reports are true, it shows dramatically the hypocrisy of the Republican Right, the champions of "state" and "local government" who have now used their influence to take tens of billions in aid away from state and local governments and of course the champions of "tax cuts" as a matter of doctrine, who have now undermined tax reductions for lower income groups. Franklin Roosevelt's famous putdown of the conservative coalition during WWII remains true of the congressional Republicans: they are still pursuing a policy of "relief for the greedy, not for the needy" on questions of public spending and taxation.