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Dec
2010
6

HouseTrap: A Short-Term Extension of Tax Cuts Could Be the Beginning of the End for Obama



It is sad to have to use this term to describe the means by which the fate of the American public will be determined, but a “deal” appears imminent between Democrats and Republicans in Washington. This Co-Op D’Etat, a frighteningly lopsided social trade, sees the Democrats succumbing to the merciless Right on tax cuts for the rich, the extension of which will cost the nation $70 billion per year, in exchange for renewing jobless benefits for the unemployed, a cost of roughly $12 billion per year. Sadly, the $70 billion tax break is divvied up among only 2 percent of the population (those who earn over $200,000), while the $12 billion sum is to be split among the unemployed…nearly 10 percent of the population.

This is Kobe for Shaq. Dante for Dan Brown. Colbert for…Norm McDonald.

Since, thank Heaven, the tax cut extension applies to everyone (i.e. you, as you, remain comfortable with owing a quarter of your thirty grand), the X-factor here is 2012. Extending the “Bush-era tax cuts” for a short period of time, one or two years most likely, is actually a political ploy by Republicans to make sure tax cuts are the biggest issue of the 2012 election cycle. And though this HouseTrap is being openly discussed in The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times, the Democrats appear to be toying with the idea of taking the plunge. Cheese is so tough to pass up.

See, the chewy center (commonly called the center-left) thinks it will be able to convince the middle class, if there is one in 2012, that the two years of sorrow and loss and joblessness and poverty and crap holidays were all the result of fiscal conservatism, a Republican insistence on “protecting the rich” before “providing for the people.” They think their mediocre catchphrases, their not-so-middle-finger-pointing and their numbers will tell the tale. The truth is, that’s just not how it works in America. As the victor reaps the spoils, so too does he sport the cloak of failure so long as it’s hanging in the hall. In the minds of everyman, in the post-pamphlet era where one receives exactly the information one chooses — no street preachers, no town square — there is no detaching what is from whodunnit. There is no investigation. There is no Vincent D’Onofrio. There is no Sam Waterson. There is only blood on the hands of the man. And that man, on November 6th, 2012, when people hit the polls, will still be Barry to his friends. If he has any (on the) left.

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