Polls have shown the influence of the media on public opinion as their results of polling on the fiscal cliff have become public. These polls universally trend showing that should no compromise be reached and the sequestration be imposed along with the Bush Tax Cuts, as they are called, being withdrawn, all consequences of hitting the deadline without making other arrangements, the Republicans are blamed by twice as many people as blame the Democrats. Much of this is due to the fact that the media has presented the Republican position as being simply demanding to retain the lower tax rates for the rich while the Democrat position has been reported as preserving government benefits programs. But what are the realities and which side is refusing to make any compromise? You just might be surprised how different the truth is to the reporting you have been fed consistently since the election ended.
The Republicans are standing to keep the current tax rates in place for every income while either placing monetary upper limits or elimination of some of the tax deductions and credits, many of which favor the upper income individuals but would not affect small business owners. The Republicans are calling for cuts to be made in numerous government programs in order to reduce spending to meet the requirements in place defining the fiscal cliff. The Democrats are proposing to simply raise taxes on people making over $250,000.00 a year who they define as millionaires or the rich as well as allowing Capital Gains Taxes to return to the previous higher level which will have a serious effect on anybody who sells their house or cashes in on investments. Neither the Republican nor the Democrat plans will come anywhere near solving the current fiscal problems faced by the United States. The main reason that no plan put forth thus far comes anywhere near solving the economic woes of the United States is simply because everybody is in denial and refuses to mention the real and honest reason for the economic problems facing the United States. Sure, they give some reference to spending and the recession and other economic weaknesses, but what is the root, the original sin, so to speak, that nobody is brave enough to speak that made the current economic difficulties an unavoidable inevitability?
The spawning of the United States economic ills is also the reason that under the Obama Presidency there has yet to be a budget passed by Congress. Initially, neither house of the Congress attempted to pass anything resembling a budget beyond continuing resolutions and department by department or individual program financing for those particular programs and social policy departments preferred by the Obama Administration and the liberals in Congress. After the Republicans took control of the House of Representatives in the 2010 elections they were able to pass budgets which addressed the obvious and growing deficit problem, the more well-known ones being the Ryan Budgets, but all these hit a brick wall of refusal in the Democrat controlled Senate. The truth be told, Democrat Majority Leader, President Pro Tempore Harry Reid simply refused to even place any of the Ryan budgets onto the Senate Schedule and thus they died without even reaching a committee or being discussed or acknowledged in any form. All of these peculiar actions which totally ignored the Constitutional responsibility of the Congress to pass a budget every year by a specific date had a reason, and that was in order to camouflage a devious plan instituted by President Obama that had it been done through the normal budget procedure would have raised outrage and condemnation of such actions from the people. So, what was this plan, this conspiracy of sorts?
In the first year of President Obama’s Administration he had complete freedom to pass any legislation he so desired with a majority in the House of Representatives and a super majority that precluded the possibility of a Republican filibuster in the Senate. President Obama, being one who would never allow such an advantage to go to waste, met with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and carved out a plan to increase certain social programs and allotting them all the monies which would be necessary to greatly increase their scope and numbers of people qualified for payments. Some of these programs and their bloated beneficiaries have been reported, the most often criticized being Food Stamps which has had the numbers of people receiving them explode since President Obama was first sworn into office. Food Stamps are not the only program to have a dramatic increase in people receiving payments or increases in their budgets. Welfare, Social Security Disability, Medicaid, among other programs have led the list of programs to be given new floods of monies from the Federal Government. Similar increases were awarded to selected favorites among the Federal Departments including Education, the Environmental Protection Agency, Health and Human Services, and other social service, social welfare, and social support agencies. What was done in the first year under President Obama was as much as a doubling or even more of many of these budgets as well as the huge increases made with the stimulus bills. These budgetary increases were not intended as one time increases but were used to reset these budgetary levels permanently so that in every following budgetary vote any increases were made using the new and substantively increased levels as the new baseline. This is why the budget has mushroomed so completely out of control. This was a planned crisis designed to push the United States off a fiscal precipice and into a deep chasm from which it would be near impossible to climb out from. That is why even if we gave President Obama his demand of increasing taxes on the rich and restoring the higher rate on Capital Gains and also gave the Republicans even their most draconian spending cuts that they have ever proposed during discussions on this fiscal crisis, it would still not be sufficient to climb out of the hole the United States finds itself in. This is the dirty little secret that neither party wishes to acknowledge.
Beyond the Cusp