Obama Pushes His Non-Budget
Those in the tax-and-spend crowd just don’t get it. Despite all the evidence to the contrary, they still insist that raising taxes is the only way to solve the government’s insurmountable debt.
According to Internal Revenue Service data, the entire taxable income of everyone earning more than $100,000 in 2008 was about $1.582 trillion. Even if all these Americans — most of whom are far from wealthy — were taxed at 100 percent, it wouldn’t cover Mr. Obama’s deficit for this year. President Obama knows this, but he also knows that threats to sock it to the rich gain votes from those on the take.
This was evidenced in President Obama’s latest non-speech about his non-budget. Like all of his speeches, this one was designed to garner votes. Period. It was simply another campaign speech, which will undoubtedly sway some half-listeners into bobbing heads in agreement as he rips into the Ryan plan.
But, despite the appearance of being a strong leader (“As long as I am president, this won’t happen,” etc.), it was simply more mendacious hyperbole — pure air. No amount of figurative banging on the table will substitute for real leadership.
More evidence of campaigning: He accuses the Ryan plan of throwing Grandma under the bus when nothing in that plan affects seniors over 55. Obama knows this as well, but scare tactics are part of his game plan to get senior votes. (This senior citizen won’t fall for it.)
I believe in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, but not when I see TV ads of lawyers seeking a piece of the action by boasting how they can get disability Social Security even if the claims are suspect. Not when I see TV ads touting highly priced power chairs for free. Not when I see deadbeats out to beat the system at the expense of the taxpayer.
When will the president admit that the only way out of our horrendous fiscal dilemma is to forget politics and vote-getting for five minutes and attack the real enemies of solvency: overbloated government; out-of-control spending; waste and fraud in entitlements and even some of the core obligations of the entitlements themselves.
Medicaid is not an entitlement. It is a form of welfare first conceived in 1965 and is managed by the states. But state participation is voluntary, and states take a variety of approaches to its administration. The result is a wide-open door to abuse and fraud. An honest budget approach would recognize this and address it.
Medicaid is needed but should join Social Security and Medicare as objects of fiscal restraint. Medicaid is not available to everyone, nor should Social Security be automatically handed to everyone. Please don’t say, “It’s our money.” Workers pay into Social Security to take care of those collecting it. That’s getting tougher as more and more people go on it and live longer and longer.
Most of the young people I know think they will never see a Social Security dime, but this need not be the case if a better plan is added to means testing. Neither, however, will come from this administration. As for Medicaid, I read recently that the projection in 10 years is for 100 million people to be covered. Does anyone really think that Obamacare will fix that?
There are now so many people working for the government that they have to invent things to do. Meddling serves that purpose. A pack of bureaucrats recently descended on the health clinic I use and changed things around so that doctors, nurses and patients waste a lot of valuable time undoing what worked well before the invasion. All of this under the guise of protecting our privacy. This from a government that can’t even spell the word.
All of this is simply an advanced form of Chicago politics. President Obama is a past master of these shenanigans. But this nation, founded by the Jeffersons and Washingtons who gave us liberty, deserves better.
Allan Jefferys, a former New York theater critic and newsman, lives in Pinehurst. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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