Not Make a Deal
by Paul Krugman
Democrats have tried to push a
compromise: let tax cuts for the wealthy expire, but extend tax cuts
for the middle class. Republicans, however, are having none of it. They
have been filibustering
Democratic attempts to separate tax cuts that mainly benefit a tiny
group of wealthy Americans from
those that mainly help the middle class. It’s all or nothing, they say:
all the Bush tax cuts must be extended.
What should Democrats do?
The answer is that they should just say no.
If G.O.P. intransigence means that taxes rise at the end of this month,
so be it.
Think about the logic of the situation. Right now, the Republicans see
themselves as successful blackmailers,
holding a clear upper hand. President Obama, they believe, wouldn’t
dare preside over a broad tax increase
while the economy is depressed. And they therefore believe that he will
give in to their demands.
But while raising taxes when unemployment is high is a bad thing, there
are worse things.
And a cold, hard look at the consequences of giving in to the G.O.P.
now suggests that saying no,
and letting the Bush tax cuts expire on schedule, is the lesser of two
Our president doesn't like to negotiate.
He seems to ask the other side what they want - then give
it to them.
It would be a bold and daring move to call their bluff,
but when has Obama ever done anything bold and daring?
Can we survive two more years of "Whatever you want" politics?
Can we survive six more years of that?
Back to Bartcop.com