Unspun Logo

Bush/Cheney 2004: A Taxing Decision

Posted by Rick · February 15th, 2004 · No Comments

This blog entry is stacked with facts about government spending under both the Republicans and the Democrats. Many of the most important facts are taken directly from the government’s own official United States National Archives & Records Administration. (You can click the links in this blog article to find the news reports from both so-called “liberal” and so-called “conservative” sources, as well.) The question is, how do we get people to read it?

Folks, you’re going to be voting for a new President this year. And if you read this article, you’ll understand that your choice of President has had more to say about the $24,000 each of you owes to repay the deficit than any other choice you could make in your lifetime.

Read it and you’ll see that I’ve focused on numbers, dates, dollars and the deficit — not ideology. I firmly believe that I don’t need to blast one party or the other, or use emotional language, for you to be able to see what’s at stake and make a reasoned decision about your vote this year. On the other hand, when you read the numbers, it’s hard not to be flabbergasted at the choices we’re making as a nation today.

So read the article — ignore (or be entertained by?) my occasional inability to control my angst — and just read the numbers.

It isn’t any surprise to hear that “Halliburton is loose with $“. After all, since Cheney (who still receives payments from Halliburton to this very day) and Bush have entered the White House, our deficit has grown at an alarming rate. Citizens for Tax Justice reported in June 2003 that

[t]he latest budget projections from the Congressional Budget Office indicate that one out of every three dollars the federal government spends this year outside of the self-funded Social Security system will be paid for by borrowing. This will be the highest share of deficit-financed spending since World War II.

Based on the estimated population of the United States, the current deficit could be paid off if each and every U.S. citizen would immediately cough up about $24,000. Do you think $24,000 is a lot of money? Each and every American’s share is that much. And, since September 30, 2003, the debt has been climbing at a rate of about $1.77 billion per day. (For this and other information on the deficit, go here.)

Who knew that the President who can’t speak English also cannot do simple math?

The Congressional Budget Office estimated Monday that the federal budget deficit would swell to $477 billion this year, a record in terms of the sheer number of dollars involved, amounting to 4.2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), the highest level since a record 4.8 percent in 1986.

Since 1986…1986? 1986?! Who was President then?

Media Control: Why You Believe Dem = Spend/Rep = Lower Taxes?

To make matters worse, the Democrats often spend money on social programs, like schools and health care, instead of giving tax breaks to Big Business. But social programs don’t own newspapers. Social programs don’t own television stations. Social programs don’t own radio stations. Big Business owns those things.

Ownership and control of much of the media is in the hands of just a few large corporations. General Electric (MSNBC and NBC), News Corp (Fox), Disney (ABC), AOL-Time Warner (CNN) and Viacom (CBS) currently control 75% of the news and entertainment that the American public accesses on television. At the urging of Big Business and people like Rupert Murdoch, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is considering further relaxation of the rules that limit corporate control over media outlets, so soon they’ll control even more.

Remember, if the headline’s big enough, it makes the news big enough!

So how is it that Democrats are always labeled as the “tax and spend” people? Simple! Though they do sometimes raise taxes, Republicans more often simply allow the deficit to balloon until they’re kicked out of office. Then Democrats come into office and — realizing that you can’t carry massive credit card debt forever — try to act fiscally-responsibly by working to pay down the deficit.

The Democrats under Clinton not only began paying down the deficit, but they did it while raising spending for the Department of Education by 18 percent; simultaneously, they raised the budget of the Department for Health and Human Services by 22 percent. Nevertheless, in eight years under Clinton, “the politics of deficit has turned into the politics of surplus.”

In 1993, as Republican control of the White House was coming to an end with the defeat of George Bush the First, the deficit was projected to be “a stunning” (that’s what they said then) $400 billion. Then, in 2000, after eight years of Democrats in the White House, USA Today reported,

Fast forward to today. The surplus, including Social Security, could reach $3 trillion over the next decade, according to some estimates.

And now, today, it’s 2004. We’ve had four years of George Bush the Second. What is the projected budget deficit for this year? Only $477 billion. That’s $77 billion more than when it was a “stunning” $400 billion under George Bush the First. What a surprise! Is this — like the war on Iraq — merely another example of “like father, like son”? Or does this point to major differences — and misconceptions amongst the American public — between Republicans and Democrats?

Only you can decide (or can you?). Educate yourself. Then get out there and vote in November 2004.

After all, it’s actually your money.

Categories: Politics-In-General


0 responses so far ↓

  • There are no comments yet...Kick things off by filling out the form below.

Leave a Comment