There’s a big fight over how to pay for the tax cut extension for the middle class (about $1000 a year per household) and extending unemployment benefits. The GOP proposed that it be paid for by trimming the federal workforce and want to tack on a massive oil pipeline project to the bill.
If I’m understanding this correctly, and I believe that I am, they want to further fuck with the environment and fire people. I’m curious how exactly this benefits the country. A new pipeline would create some jobs (the GOP falsely claims 100,000 jobs when the real number maxes out at 13,000) but is also damaging and steers us further away from a focus on alternative energies.
As for firing federal workers, that’s counter-intuitive on every level. “Hey, I know how we’ll help the economy and improve unemployment… let’s make MORE people unemployed!” The GOP continues to top themselves when it comes to asinine ideas, don’t they?
The Democrats, on the other hand, want to raise taxes a mere 3% on those making over a million dollars a year to pay for the bill. Skipping the old “$250,000 and up” threshold for the tax raise means little to no impact on small business and by all rights should erase any controversy. By focusing solely on millionaires and billionaires (who also support the idea, btw), this method of paying for the bill should be a no-brainer. The GOP rank-and-file lined up and flatly rejected the tax increase on the wealthy which isn’t really a surprise, but is still a puzzling move considering the country’s proven state of record income inequality. Do they really hate math that much?
“Are you fucking kidding me?”
This is why the religious-right is truly dangerous because they base their decisions on faith over fact. Plenty of Democrats are guilty of this as well, but their party is definitely more nuanced. The GOP by comparison is like a singular mind, always speaking with one united voice. They spend less time thinking and more time obeying orders from the Republican elite (Boehner, Cantor).
Speaking of Boehner, he’s the one fucking up this bill. Harry Reid (D) worked out a compromise deal with Mitch McConnell (R), at the request of John Boehner (R), that would extend the tax break and unemployment by two more months (since both expire Dec 31st ) in order to allow more time to debate how to pay for the long term extension without hurting the middle class in the process. That resulting proposal led to 90% of the Senate voting with approval. Boehner expressed being pleased. Everything looked like smooth sailing.
Don’t try to kick the ball, Obama. Boehner will yank it just like he always does.
Then it came up for a vote in the House and Boehner reversed his position, saying he wanted a long-term deal worked out NOW that would last a full year. Everyone obviously wants that, but there isn’t enough time to work out how to pay for it since Congress is about to go on their holiday break. That’s the whole damn point of having the 2-month extension!! Which Boehner himself originally pushed for!!
The Dems want a tax on the wealthy, the GOP wants the pipeline… both sides are in complete opposition. Time is necessary to wage that battle but Boehner wants to play chicken right down to the wire in the hopes the Dems will cave (as they typically do) and say yes to the pipeline. If the Dems say no and a deal isn’t made in time then middle class taxes will go up on Jan 1 and Boehner will spin it to make it look like it was because the Dems refused to compromise. In truth, the Dems have already compromised and it’s Boehner and the Tea Party House Republicans that are refusing to follow through at the last minute.
In fact, the House was going to have an up-or-down vote on the matter until Boehner cancelled it. What does that mean? It means the House was actually likely to SUPPORT the compromise, but rather than let Democracy play out Boehner prevented a vote on the matter.
“Blah blah blah.”
Why did I write all this? Because the media has sucked at explaining the situation. If you watch CNN and want to fully understand the issue, you’re out of luck. I figured I’d make a general but complete summary of the situation, both for those of you reading this and for myself to sort the whole mess out that’s been swimming in my head.
The bottom line seems pretty clear: Boehner is being a douche. But if taxes do go up, the entire middle class will be furious and neither party wants that to happen. Someone will cave and that person, by all rights, should be John Boehner. Whatever he decides, he’ll ultimately look bad. If he gives up and acts reasonable, the Tea Party House won’t be happy and he’ll look like a quitter. If he doesn’t give up, then the entire non-Fox News watching population will want his big orange head on a stick.
I’d be okay paying $1000 more in taxes to see that.