Balanced Budget: There he goes again!

Maher, Steve (SD-MS) SMAHER at GI.COM
Mon Feb 2 14:05:00 MST 1998

I caught the beginning of Slick's speech this morning, introducing
"his" balanced budget. Sounds like another branch of the divert-
attention-from-the-obstruction-and-perjury-scandal is becoming

    Find an old enemy, dust him off, hope people don't remember
    that he was actually a good guy, and bash the daylights out
    of him again in public.

He started in by pointing out that this was the first balanced budget
in thirty years-- well and good, though he forgot to mention who
controlled the purse strings for those thirty years.

He then announced that this budget was finally undoing the damage
done by trickle-down economics, which had caused massive federal
spending and huge deficits, according to Our Leader.

He is evidently hoping that people will have forgotten by now, that
when Pres. Reagan submitted his first budget (and hit the Dem Congress
with a TV blitz where he asked the public to call their congressmen
and demand they pass Reagan's desired tax rate and spending cuts), he
got promises from (then-Speaker) Tip O'Neill to cut those rates and cut
Congressional spending. The rates were put in place at once... but actual
spending allocations could be deferrred until the time came to spend the
money, as is usual in a Congressional fiscal years. "A budget proposes--
and sets tax rates-- but Congress disposes".

Slick hopes that we've forgotten O'Neill's breaking of his promise to
cut spending-- directly against the wishes of Pres. Reagan-- and submittal
of spending bills that blew a hole in the deficit (an apt phrase finally)
and created debts that we may never pay off. Even the accelerated tax
revenues that resulted from growing economic strength, couldn't keep
up with the spending that Reagan hated but Congress loved. So, we racked
up debts that exceeded five trillion dollars and climbing-- until this
year, when (as Clinton said) the growing economy resulting from the lower
tax rates flooded the treasury with ever-higher tax payments.

Slick thanks his liberal policies for the increasing tax revenues, and
blamed trickle-down economics for the soaring Congressional spending.
He's got it exactly backward, of course-- the liberal policies that
ran unchecked through the Congress of the late '70s and '80s, racked up
the deficits until (at least he got this part right) the economy freed
by lowering tax rates finally caught up.

The growing economy wasn't just a paper trick, though-- it is now
necessary for both spouses in a family to work, to pay anough tax
money to satisfy the voracious appetites of the liberal Congressmen
who allocated spending until recently. Bingo-- a bigger economy, with
more work getting done. But this bodes no good for their children,
whose parents have literally been stolen by those loving, feeling
liberals to satisfy their neverending schemes for the Utopia that,
at last notice, wasn't any closer than before.

They try to couch this situation in glowing terms, by proclaiming how
"low" taxes are compared to GDP. They carefully avoid mentioning that
it's not because taxes are lower, but because GDP is higher-- due mostly
to all those new entrants to the job market: the other spouse, and
sometimes the teenager who now has less time for homework, sports,
dating (in other words, being a teenager). A study of taxes per FAMILY
paints a much different picture-- and a heartbreaking one.

Families have the same resources (available time and effort) today,
than they did  fifty years ago. But more and more of those resources
are now being sucked up by government-- and they can only come from
one place: the time and effort previously spent by parents with their
children as a group, and the effort expended to go on that picnic,
teach those extra-credit math problems, pick flowers for that hardworking
spouse. More and more, all those families have left, is late-night
hours... and exhaustion.

"Quality time" was a term invented in the '80s... as its scarcity became
more and more apparent; while more and more work was needed to serve

When you hear some liberal politician crowing about balanced budgets and
high GDP, keep in mind whose backs those two things are breaking: YOURS.
And, worse, your family's.

It's time to reverse the trend, and find ways to balance the budgets
without breaking backs. Reagan suggested one, back in the '80s: reducing
Government spending. Government even agreed with him-- but when HIS
back was turned, they (the Democrat-controlled Congress) reneged on
their promise, and did their best to break his back... and yours.
They presented spending bills that staggered the imagination-- as well
as the increasing tax revenues of the '80s-- and demanded that Reagan
sign them, or shut down the government. Reagan caved, and signed-- a
questionable move, for which he bears some responsibility.

But the results stay with us today: How many of you could buy a house
today, and pay for it on one income?

The American Dream has become the American Dreams, plural... because
one individual can't hack it any more.

That's the true price of our Balanced Budget.

There are better ways. We need to implement them... while we still
have backbones left.

Steve Maher   

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