The Wails of Oust Boehner went up over the weekend and yesterday so loud I believe my Grandmother, who survived the Reagan Years but not the Clinton years probably heard them. I will admit that going to bed last night, I too was ready to throw in the towel on this weepy eyed Speaker from the liberal 32% of the Republican Party. A funny thing happened on the way to my effigy burning party however. That was the little fact that when John Boehner delivered Nancy Pelosi’s plan on tax rates to the President for consideration, basically eschewing the line in the sand drawn by a goodly percentage of the right side of the aisle outside of the beltway, Barack Obama rejected it quicker than Yasser Arafat rejecting the offer from Israelis at Oslo that basically promised him his entire wish list. In order to be fair to the President, who has shown less than the slightest inclination to, “come together in the interests of all Americans,” with regards to the, “Fiscal Cliff,” negotiations, John Boehner did couch his monumental capitulation in the terms of separating out spending as a different issue to be discussed.
Whether by design, or purely on accident, John boehner has accomplished three things with this latest offer of capitulation to President Obama. First, by offering President Obama the plan endorsed by his very own party, at least as far as tax rates are concerned, Boehner forced our President to either accept the offer, or to show America the blindingly obvious fact that he indeed is only too happy to drive that car, Thelman and Louise style, off of the, “Fiscal Cliff.” By the time I am writing this, even the dullest talking heads from MSNBC should be able to realize that the President just rejected his own plan, because it was not punishing enough to American Taxpayers.
Another thing it does, is it puts the onus back on President Obama in regards to spending, specifically, having our federal spigots permanently stuck on the OMG + WTF rate of flow. In the end analysis, I would not mind seeing the United States revert to the Clinton era rates of taxation on income and investment, if we subsequently agreed to cut our spending to the Clinton levels of spending as well. After all, as I have stated before, spending and taxation are really the same thing, irrespective of the rates put into place at the time.
Speaking of which, as it turns out, Veronique DeRugy, a Mercatus Fellow at George Mason University, and a top notch economist besides, has done the math to show exactly that. I’ll admit that I learned this by simply watching one of several dozen Milton Friedman videos online, so I of course feel like I’ve cheated somehow by learning it the easy way, rather than actually proving it. So, my hat’s off to Ms. DeRugy.
The third thing this does is to place the ball back in Obama’s court with respect to the most important issue in this debate. By caving totally on the minor issue, which is the mistaken belief that tax rates are equal to the total of taxes paid, Boehner has put the spotlight uncomfortably back onto a President who will try to push promised cuts in growth decades from now as actual cuts in spending. Not even Christopher Hayes, he of, “rhetorically proximate to a justification for war,” fame, will be dumb enough to fall for this one with the disinfectant of sunlight shining at full beam.
If Boehner does a good job in securing actual cuts in exchange for his capitulation, then I say we give him his props. If he secures for us once again, spending cuts in rates of growth on Tuesday for a tax increase today, then I’ll personally lead the charge to hang him in effigy, while writing my Congress Critter to oust him as Speaker.
Tags: John Boehner