NY Times: A Call for Fairness

Wanted to be sure you saw this editorial in today’s New York Times on President Obama’s plan to reduce the deficit, create jobs, strengthen entitlements and ensure all Americans pay their fair share.

Key excerpts:

“This time, [President Obama] issued an unabashed call for economic fairness in cutting the federal deficit, asking as much from those on the economy’s upper rungs as from those lower down whose programs may be trimmed.”

It pays for the desperately needed jobs plan he sent to Congress last week without more mindless hacking at government programs, and would be a much better alternative to the $1.2 trillion in across-the-board spending cuts that loom if Congress does not pass a debt plan this year.”

Republicans will, of course, mount obdurate opposition in Congress, since they have no intention of allowing the government to ask anything from the wealthy and corporations. Even before the plan was announced, the party’s leaders had rolled out their rusted artillery, calling an increase in taxes on high earners ‘class warfare’ and insisting that it would fatally wound ‘job creators.’ (In fact, less than 2 percent of the nation’s small businesses would be affected by the tax increases.)”

“…the president did not let that predictable line of argument stop him, and even had a good rejoinder: ‘This is not class warfare. It’s math. The money is going to have to come from someplace.’ It could come from the middle class, from the elderly and the poor, by asking them to give up benefits from programs like Medicare, Medicaid and food stamps — as many Republicans are advocating. It could come by pulling money from road building, schools, food inspection and other vital government services. Those are unacceptable choices, he said, particularly if the rich give up nothing…”