Sen. Pat Toomey got it wrong again this week when he told reporters “This is a spending problem, a structural spending problem, and that’s what needs to be fixed.”
He was talking about deficit reduction and the impending “fiscal cliff,” a situation created by Republicans like Sen. Toomey when they refused to approve paying for the trillions of debt they created. Conservatives spent like drunken sailors on wars of choice, tax cuts for the rich and corporate welfare then refused to pay the bill without holding the rest of us hostage. Now the situation they crafted is looming and they still won’t accept responsibility for their failed policies.
The issue isn’t spending, what caused the deficit are three things: two wars put on credit, massive tax cuts for the rich and failed economic and regulatory policies which crashed the global economy. The Great Recession diminished tax revenues as eight million people lost their jobs and 7 million of them their homes. This was the direct result of Republicans refusals to regulate Wall Street, tax the rich and pay for their wars. Spending really has nothing to do with it. In fact economics requires us to be spending more to put folks back to work so they can begin paying taxes again and raise revenues.
Republicans are insisting on raising revenues only by ending deductions and reducing the formula for cost of living increases. This insidious “reform” would hurt those receiving VA benefits, disability payments, Social Security, welfare, food stamps and other social safety net benefits designed to lift them out of poverty, keep them warm in winter and feed their kids. It would throw more Americans into poverty and increase hunger. This is what they want to do instead of taxing the richest 1%. It’s beyond insidious, it’s inhumane.