Russert had whiny and reasonable-sounding Democrat Joe Lieberman and sometime-Republican, “straight-talkin'” John McCain on today. (Translation: “straight talk” means that he says things that his constituency, the mainstream press, likes to hear, such as his continuing support for campaign-finance “reform,” which will help them maintain their virtual monopoly on political speech.) Also note that, as in the case of Tom Daschle, “reasonable-sounding” is not the same as reasonable, or sensible.
While he got both of them to say that the Bush tax cut was a mistake, it was obvious that he was almost wetting his pants in anticipation of getting one or both of them to say that it should be repealed. They didn’t take the bait.
But I am astounded by the pervasive economic ignorance being flaunted by the Democrats and their press stenographers. Daschle’s story (and so far, he’s sticking with it), is that the recession is Bush’s fault, and that it was caused by his “gargantuan tax cut.”
Well, number one, the tax cut is not all that big, in the context of the economy. Number two, it hasn’t even taken effect yet. Number three, even when it does take effect, it will be phased in slowly and ineffectively, over many years. Number four, the economy was already sliding downhill before Bush was even elected, when tax cuts were nothing but a campaign promise.
Number five, THERE HAS NEVER IN THE HISTORY OF THE KNOWN UNIVERSE BEEN A RECESSION CAUSED BY A TAX CUT, PROSPECTIVE, RETROACTIVE, OR OTHERWISE. Tax cuts have many effects, but recessions are never one of them. Even most liberal economists agree with that, or at least they used to.
I’m still waiting for some kind of explanation, cogent or otherwise, for the Democrats’ position. The reality of course, is that they do know better, but think that the American people are stupid. They really want to get the money back for their pet programs, and they don’t really, in their hearts, mind deficits, but they can’t say that, so they come up with this cockamamie economic fairy tale instead.
I was glad to see Bush being so emphatic on the subject in Ontario yesterday. “Over my dead body” (even with the accidental negative) sounds stronger than “read my lips,” and I suspect that he’s learned the lesson from his father’s wet betrayal of one of the tenets of the Republican Party.