An address to the President… I hope he hears it and follows through with these suggestions…
As the debate over deficits ramped up in Washington on Monday, Sen. Bernie Sanders laid out the compelling case not to slash programs for working families. Any deficit reduction package must rely on new revenue for at least half the reduction in red ink, he added in a major address in the Senate. Sanders spoke at length about what caused deficits (wars, Wall Street bailouts, tax breaks for the rich) and how to shrink them (more revenue from the wealthiest Americans to match spending cuts). He urged fellow senators not to yield to Republican congressional leaders who “acted like schoolyard bullies” when they walked out of budget negotiations. He summed up the situation in a letter to the president that had been signed by more than 16000 people by the time he completed his speech. Sign the letter » http://www.sanders.senate.gov
On which side of this chart do you reside? Where should we focus our energies to reduce our deficit? Which side supports working families and which side supports big business…?
The chart below compares the 10 safety-net programs slated for deep cuts with the cost of the tax breaks that should also be considered for reduction or elimination to bring the budget into balance. The column on the left is a list of safety-net programs that have already been targets of the House leadership’s budget ax. The column on the right is the cost to specified tax breaks (see bottom of page for sources).
Most Americans would be surprised to learn that tax breaks are not on the table during any budget negotiations. In fact, Congress has the Congressional Budget Office prepare an official spending estimate for the cost of all programs or their expansions. Meanwhile, Congress enacts and continues tax breaks without any requirement that the cost of tax breaks be calculated and shared with members before a vote.
That’s why, over the last 16 years, the cost to the Treasury of the mortgage interest tax deduction, for example, doubled from $48 billion in 1995 to nearly $100 billion this year and no one made a peep about getting control of this loss in revenue. The stunning growth in this tax break is unchecked and unquestioned. – Donna Cooper (Center for American Progress)
We keep being told that the country is “Center-Right”. Center-Right!? Even with the latest poll numbers of the NBC-WSJ poll??
I am a consistent watcher of Rachel Maddow’s show and last night she echoed what I have been saying since the election of Barack Obama in Nov of 2008. The NBC – WSJ poll that she talks about basically shows the mandate that Obama walked into office with. Change we can believe in. From taxing the wealthy to the Public Option to protecting collective bargaining, Americans think a lot alike. No wonder the President was swept into office. I thought elections had consequences!?
Watch this clip of the Rachel Maddow Show and let me know what you think.
Is the budget a moral document? Shouldn’t it reflect our priorities as a nation? Is your priority bankers or teachers? The wealthy or the poor and working class? The powerful or the poor. Which would Jesus choose…
I do not separate politics from my religion or my race. They all play a part in where I stand on issues. This issue is no different. While deficits and budgets can be viewed in moral terms, how you handle the budget and deficits in real terms and who is affected most by those deficit and budget fixes shines a real light on the window to the souls of lawmakers and legislators as well.
After the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, made a “moral” argument about the deficit to some Christian Conservatives this past weekend, Jim Wallis of Sojourners put this full page ad in Politico. And his point hit home for me.
Mr Boehner cannot call the deficits and budgets a moral issue only when it feeds the Christian conservative mantra of less government. He also must be held accountable for how he institutes the budget fixes as it relates to he and his party’s morals as well. Are tax breaks for the wealthy and voting to continue big-oil subsidies that are funded by tax payers part of your moral argument Mr Boehner!? Just as you cut the jobs, wages and services of regular working class Americans… As Mr Boehner would say, “So be it!”
It’s always “power” vs “the people” with these Republicans…
It’s time “the people” stood up.
So be it…
As religious leaders, we don’t believe that our most vulnerable people should bear more additional burdens. Do you agree? Why are there deep cuts in budget proposals to some of our most important programs that prevent deadly diseases among children in Africa and provide critical nutrition for our poorest families right here at home? These are not only cost-effective, but also relatively low in cost compared to massive expenditures in our military budget, corporate tax loopholes, and subsidies to oil, gas, and agribusiness companies — just to name a few of the things that were protected in the proposals from your House Republicans. Is that fair? Is that right? Is that moral? – Jim Wallis