('76 Contributor) Lisa Wirthman writes that Planned Parenthood was bullied in the budget battle (Denver Post, April 15). Why does a billion dollar organization need a subsidy from U.S. taxpayers? Rather, Washington is using our tax money to assist a favored special interest group, the sex education and abortion industry. At the same time, Planned Parenthood has been complicit in statutory rape cases and taken donations with offensive racial overtones.
American blacks make up twelve percent of the U.S. population, yet thirty-seven percent of all abortions are performed on black women. With a black-to-white abortion rate of 3-to-1 nationally, abortion remains what Jesse Jackson called it in the 1970s—black genocide.
Abortionists continue their work of tearing off the arms and legs and crushing the heads of babies in the womb at the rate of 3,300 per day. These are our most defenseless citizens. Why should Planned Parenthood be allowed to bully babies and taxpayers?
('76 Contributor) Question for those of you concerned about the size of federal debts and deficits: Would you endorse a plan which would add another five or six trillion dollars to the federal debt over the next decade while increasing Uncle Sam’s annual expenditures by $1.1 trillion? If so, you’re in luck. House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) recently unveiled just such a plan. Naturally, Democrats immediately denounced Ryan’s plan as “radical.” They think the increases in spending and debt should be much larger. It shows how far the goalposts have been moved in American politics that adding multi-trillion-dollars of debt is the most conservative proposal anyone in government has made. How would you like your government debt, Mr. or Ms. Citizen—gargantuan or astronomical? The Ryan Plan, if implemented (more on that in a moment), would cut $179 billion from President Obama’s planned spending in 2012 and another $241 billion in 2013. Why is it not “radical” to raise spending by $787 billion in one year, like Obama did in 2009, but “radical” to propose a decrease of $179 billion? Ryan proposes to reform Medicare and Medicaid so that they don’t bankrupt the country. Why is that demonized as “war on the elderly and poor” (the phraseology of Illinois Democrat Jan Schakovsky), but nobody talks about waging “war on the young” by saddling the rising generation with trillions of dollars of debt? Ryan’s plan is bold in comparison to the status quo in Washington, but it isn’t radical. You want “radical?” How about getting government out of the medical field entirely? Since the creation of Medicare and Medicaid in the 1960s, medical costs have soared far beyond the rate of inflation. More than that, market competition has been diminished and fraud and inefficiency have ballooned apace with the growth of these two medical bureaucracies. (Why do liberals rant and rave about the Pentagon’s inefficiencies, but remain silent about the similar inefficiencies of Medicare and Medicaid?) Ryan’s plan is statist to the core, promising seniors large government subsidies with which to choose from a slate of government-regulated health care plans. At this stage, Ryan’s plan is academic. Its combination of spending cuts, tax cuts, and devolution of administration of government programs from the federal to the state level—while a significant improvement over the fiscal insanity of recent years—is dead in the water until at least 2013. If you doubt that, look at the recently concluded “government shutdown” soap opera. The government is going broke, the Republicans were asking for a giveback of less than 10 percent of the Obama/Pelosi/Reid spending increases, but the Democrats—famous for extolling bipartisanship—threatened to shut down the government rather than make such a modest compromise. It will be interesting to see how long Ryan’s fellow Republicans in the House stand by his proposals. The coming vote is largely symbolic. The real test will be when Republicans have to face the voters in close re-election races next year. A majority of Americans may say that they favor reduced federal spending and smaller deficits, but when push comes to shove, how many will vote for a legislator who actually shrinks programs from which voters benefit? Even if Ryan’s plan, by some miracle, were to be enacted, nothing fundamental would change. Uncle Sam will remain a gigantic, meddling nanny, interfering with our lives and progressively eroding our liberty, entangling us in a corrupt network of special privileges that murder justice and bury the rule of law. Ryan’s plan is a futile attempt to square the circle. He is trying to find a way to preserve an inherently flawed system—a democratic transfer society—whereby government somehow takes care of all of us without eventually spending itself into bankruptcy. The Ryan Plan is not radical; that is, it doesn’t get to the root of the problem. It never questions the legitimacy of government redistribution of wealth. The mechanisms, rationale, and justification for Big Government remain unchallenged. Although a significant step in the right direction (i.e., less federal spending), Paul Ryan’s plan ultimately is not a cure for what ails us. Mark Hendrickson is an adjunct faculty member, economist, and fellow for economic and social policy with the Center for Vision & Values at Grove City College.
(Centennial Fellow) In arguably the most colossal political blunder of the 20th century Adolf Hitler declared war on the United States three days after Pearl Harbor based on his fatal underestimation of America’s prodigious capacity for war production. A dozen years later Dwight Eisenhower wrote that “the greatness of America and its capacity for doing good in the world is inseparably linked to the might of the U. S. economy.” Thirty years later Ronald Reagan launched a massive military build-up believing correctly that he could win the Cold War by breaking the back of a Soviet economy that had no chance of successfully competing with the American economic juggernaut. Since the Second World War Americans have viewed their country’s global dominance and concomitant economic primacy as a constant in world affairs. They have also seen that economy as a mighty engine that would endlessly elevate the quality of life for each successive generation of Americans. Now in less than three years that mindset has been definitively shattered. Today- however unwillingly- we must actually contemplate the possibility that our country could go bankrupt and our economy collapse under the weight of heretofore unthinkable debt and deficits. Perhaps ever more damaging to our collective psyche is the thought that we are ushering in a new Gray Age of American history in which our children and grandchildren will look back on our time as a moment of national fecklessness that led to the death of the American Dream. This bleak scenario arises from a perfect storm of global events most notably the world’s worst economic shocks since 1945 and a new American Administration at once economically clueless and blindly driven by a redistributionist ideology. At a moment when all of Europe is beginning to turn away from the destructive consequences of socialist economics the Obama administration is racing hell bent to embrace it. Just when these baleful trends appeared irreversible there occurred an extraordinary and leaderless popular uprising among the American people. Some defined it narrowly as the “Tea Party Movement” but it was actually much broader than that as was demonstrated last November in the most stunning mid-term elections in seventy years. The most remarkable aspect of that election occurred not at the national level, but at the base of the American political pyramid. There Republicans gained nearly 700 state legislative seats- the most they have held since 1928. The consequences of this startling shift are now being seen in statehouses across the nation – nowhere more visibly than in Madison, Wisconsin. Pundits and Parties alike are yet divided on the meaning of this political earthquake but one truth seems emergent: virtually every American adult understands the relationship between income and expenditure, and that when the latter consistently outpaces the former it is a bad thing. They also know that just as excessive debt can crush a family, so too it can ruin a nation. At present the two political parties are engaged in a contest to determine which can more skillfully respond to the American people’s convictions regarding income and expenditure. The Democrats- at least those in Washington- are at a disadvantage in defending a President loudly advocating the need for more spending and rhetoric aside showing almost no interest in cutting spending. Republicans who have no history of ever cutting spending are gripped by uncertainty and divided between those determined to make the leap to real spending cuts- including entitlements- and those terrified of being politically savaged by demagoguing Democrats. Though they are most disingenuous in articulating it the Democrats as the historic party of more government believe that large tax increases will at once fix the economy and banish the entitlement nightmare. Though tongue-tied about what and how much to cut- particularly entitlements- Republicans as the party of less government see tax increases as anathema to recovery and believe only dramatic spending cuts can re-energize those market forces that have historically been the mighty engine of American growth and prosperity. The bet here is that just as governors like Wisconsin’s Tommy Thompson, and Michigan’s John Engler built the state laboratories that helped shape the resurgent economy of the Eighties and Nineties, so too will it be Republican governors from the Heartland like, Walker, Daniels, and Kasich who will boldly go where a timid Washington establishment has feared to tread and thereby show the way to rescuing an American economy trembling on the brink of catastrophe. All Americans should wish them well, for if they and their states fail, it is hard to imagine how our country can succeed.
William Moloney’s columns have appeared in the Wall St. Journal, USA Today, Washington Post , and many other outlets. He is a Fellow of the Centennial Institute.
Some of the Colorado tax dollars that support higher education follow the student to whatever college he or she chooses to attend, instead of being directed by politicians. That’s good.
But the formula for allocating those College Opportunity Fund dollars (known as the COF stipend) is politically stacked to favor government-run colleges over independent colleges – and that’s not good.
It works this way:
Suppose the Smith twins, Bob and Barb, graduated last year from East High. Because Bob chose CU, a government-run college, he got an $1860 boost from the state toward this year’s tuition, via the COF stipend.
But Barb’s COF stipend was only worth $930, half of what her brother got, because she chose DU, an independently-run college.
How was that fair? It wasn’t. How did it serve the public interest? It didn’t. Shouldn’t there be a law equalizing educational opportunities for all students who receive the COF stipend? There should.
To establish fairness and serve the public interest, and the Colorado House of Representatives is now considering just such a law.
House Bill 1168 calls for the stipend to be equal in value for every Bob or Barb who gets a Colorado diploma, demonstrates financial need, and enrolls at a participating Colorado campus, whether public or private.
The bill is rated at zero fiscal impact, meaning it will not spend a single additional dollar of taxpayer money in these tough budgetary times. It simply cuts up the existing COF pie into pieces of exactly the same size for all the students who get a stipend.
HB-1168 was approved by the House Education Committee on Feb. 28 with a bipartisan 8-5 majority. It won preliminary approval by the full House on March 11, and faces a final vote in the House the week of March 14.
The bill faces tough hurdles in passing a Democrat-run state Senate and then obtaining Gov. John Hickenlooper’s signature to become law. But if enough Coloradans signal their support to legislators in both parties and both houses, it could happen.
In my opinion, HB-1168 is fundamentally fair in treating all students equally, fiscally responsible in holding spending level, and educationally smart in encouraging a wider diversity of college choices for the sons and daughters of Colorado. What’s your opinion?
Whether you agree or disagree with me, now is the time to make your views known to state representatives and state senators via email, phone, or seeing them in person one day soon.
A directory of contact information for all 100 Colorado legislators is here. House & Senate Emails & Phone
A fact sheet with more details on House Bill 1168 is here.
An economist’s memo on fiscal benefits to the state from equalizing COF stipends is here.
Monday, 7 March 2011 11:51 by Admin
A second consecutive year of sharp reductions to K-12 education funding in Colorado, proposed Gov. John Hickenlooper's budget, could actually help public schools improve learning performance and break out of a 30-year "Groundhog Day" cycle of ineffectual reforms endlessly repeated.That was the argument by Centennial Institute fellows William Moloney and Krista Kafer at Issue Monday, Feb. 28 in the CCU Beckman Center.
Hear the full podcast of Moloney & Kafer's briefing. [mp3:Issue Monday 2.28.11.mp3] Moloney was Colorado Education Commissioner, 1997-2007, and has held senior education policy posts in a half-dozen other states and countries. Kafer directed education policy for the Heritage Foundation in Washington, DC, and is now does quality evaluations for charter schools.The briefing was based on Moloney's Centennial Institute policy brief, Much Better Schools on Much Lower Budgets, published in December 2010 and available here: Centennial Policy Brief No. 2010-2
His fact sheet for Issue Monday is here: Moloney 022811 Education Costs & Results
Krista Kafer and Centennial Institute director John Andrews flank former Commissioner William Moloney in the final "lightning round" of school reform questions at Issue Monday, Feb. 28.
(Centennial Fellow) The next two years will almost certainly determine whether Americans possess the resolve and courage necessary to save our country from fiscal disaster. If we do not, then the Americans will likely succumb to the European mindset that work is not a source of accomplishment or satisfaction but merely a way to bide time between vacations and weekends while relying on government for health care and retirement. Most European young people recognize that their opportunity to pursue happiness is lost – squandered by unsustainable entitlements to which their parents and grandparents have become addicted. Because so few of us have known personal or financial sacrifice, it’s reasonable to fear that we will not realize the urgency of our predicament until, like the French, the Brits and the Germans, we are irretrievably mired in the consequences of our fiscal irresponsibility. Both political parties – and voters in general – share the blame for our $14 trillion in federal debt and some $100 trillion in unfunded Social Security and Medicare entitlements. Today, however, the attitudes of the two major parties couldn’t be more different. While Republicans, like budget committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan, are proposing serious spending cuts and long-term entitlement reform, President Obama and the Democrats are cynically betting their political fortunes that Americans will flinch – rejecting spending cuts that hit close to home. We’ve arrived at a crucial fork in the road, and the 2012 election will determine our fate. The Wall Street Journal recently opined, “If Obama wins a second term, his health-care (bill) won’t be repealed and will set the U.S. on Europe’s path of excessive debt and shrunken destiny, perhaps irretrievably.” President Obama came into office talking about the necessity of reforming entitlements and “free(ing) ourselves from the burden of historic deficits.” Today, only fools believe he meant it. In just two years, non-defense spending has increased 24% – triple that if you include stimulus spending. Obama’s new budget triples the debt he “inherited” and ensconces even more unaffordable entitlements and higher taxes. He proposes to cut defense and homeland security by 21%, while Social Security grows by 27% and Medicare 32%. Entitlements are killing us with complacency, jeopardizing our ability to defend our country. To anyone who will notice, it is obvious that Obama’s stimulus – more than $1 trillion borrowed from the Chinese and billed to future generations – was never intended to bolster the economy but to permanently expand the size and scope of government. As a candidate, Obama aspired to be a transformational president. Since election, his focus has been transforming Americans’ relationship with the federal government into a pervasive, intrusive arrangement. Our debt is the largest since World War II, but unlike that debt, incurred to protect freedom and democracy, this debt has been amassed largely to promote dependency and, absent swift action, will only grow worse. Prior to 2008, we had never seen a deficit greater than $500 billion. Now, we’re facing never-ending deficits $1 trillion a year and interest payments alone surpassing that mark before the end of Obama’s second term. Ronald Reagan warned: “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.” Unlike past generations, our calling isn’t to risk our lives for our country. It’s simply to exercise self-discipline to live within our means. Will we stop squandering our future and that of our children and grandchildren, so that they, too, can experience the freedom and opportunity that makes “the pursuit of happiness” a uniquely American dream? We will soon know the answer.
Mark Hillman served as Senate Majority Leader and State Treasurer. He is now the Republican National Committeeman for Colorado, and a Centennial Institute Fellow. To read more or comment, go to www.MarkHillman.com.
(Centennial Fellow) An enduring memory from the early days of the iconic “Monday Night Football” was when the game got out of hand and the late “Dandy Don” Meredith – partner to Howard Cosell and Frank Gifford - would croon, “Turn Out the Lights, the Party’s Over.” Today astute mavens of the Education Establishment- principally the teacher unions- are beginning to hear echoes of that melancholy tune. Across America from Albany to Sacramento a fifty state rebellion is brewing against the power, privilege, and pensions of the most arrogant and successful political machine in American history. In a supreme irony the new leaders of this assault on union power are Governors of the very same Democratic Party that has kow-towed to those unions for over half a century. State CEOs Cuomo (N.Y.), O’Malley(Md.), Patrick (Mass.), Quinn (Ill.), and Brown (Calif.) in a bizarre case of “recovered memory” seem to have suddenly recalled the sage words of their greatest hero Franklin Roosevelt who in 1937 stated unequivocally that “the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted in the public service.” Who knew? Reading the inaugural addresses of the above noted gentlemen one might think they were “channeling” Ronald Reagan, but their real role model has been the outsize figure of Republican Governor Chris Christie who for the last year has in gutsy and colorful fashion stood up to the bullying tactics of the New Jersey teachers union (NJEA) that he dared to challenge. The Democrats saw that Christie not only achieved budget cutting success despite a Democratic legislature but in doing so also won a nationwide popularity that put him atop Republican Presidential preference polls. It is no mystery why even Democratic governors are turning against their long time allies. The reason is that they all have realized that bloated education spending is far and away the biggest threat to battered state budgets. If Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid are the Entitlements that swallowed the federal budget, then Education is the Entitlement that swallowed state and local budgets. In the words of Adam Schaeffer of the Cato Institute “The key structural problem in state and local finances is education, not health care….(It is) the $600 billion dollar elephant in the statehouse.” Consider the following statistics:
Inflation adjusted education spending increase 1970-2010: 102%
Teachers increased 61% while students increased just 8% (1970-2008)
Education spending as a share of tax revenue increased 90% from 1992 to 2011 at the state level and 73% at the local level.
Including pension plans, capital construction, and debt service K-12 education consumes 56% of all state and local tax revenue.
To date 36 governors have stated their intention to reduce K-12 spending. Some do it reluctantly (usually Democrats) but all speak in a vein of realism: They have no choice. In the words of the old-time bank robber Willie “The Actor” Sutton: “That’s where the money is.” The best symbol of this emerging new environment has to be New York State- the ultimate citadel of union power and corruption. How ironic that the son of Mario Cuomo- a slavish acolyte of union power in his day- should be the one to announce a 7.3% cut in K-12 spending ($1.5 billion dollars; 409 million in New York City alone.) Predictably union hacks decried Cuomo’s proposed cuts, and just as predictably hid concerns for their perks behind concern for “our kids”. Lamented one spokesman, “the damage to students will be permanent because children do not get a second chance” but the bulk of his text dwelt on the potential devastation of “teacher lay-offs and larger class sizes.” Governor Cuomo’s sensible observation that “Qualitative decline does not automatically follow a thoughtful Quantitative draw down” isn’t cutting it with the union gang, but that will be precisely the test for the future. There is abundant evidence around the country and the world that America can have much better schools at much lower costs. Teacher unions will either adapt and sign on for that mission, or end up occupying a well deserved spot on the ash heap of history. The struggle to reclaim America’s educational greatness will not be easy, but it is a battle our country can and must win.
Former Colorado Education Commissioner (1997-2007) William Moloney’s columns have appeared in the Wall St. Journal, USA Today, Washington Post, Philadelphia Inquirer, and Human Events.
(Centennial Fellow) It’s a political reality: talking about how to govern is far easier than actually governing.
Government, after all, is a reflection of the governed and nothing requires individual voters or “the people” in general to act responsibly. That observation is not an indictment of the electorate but an acknowledgement that voters are never forced to confront tough choices about government spending.
Consider the federal debt and deficit. The deficit is the annual difference between revenue and spending; debt is the accumulated total of deficits.
Gallup says 84% of Americans believe that it is extremely or very important for Congress and the President to deal with the federal deficit. By a 50% to 16% margin, Americans say the debt limit should be raised “only if Congress can agree ahead of time on measures to reduce the deficit in the future.”
Take those sentiments at face value, and it appears that Congress – Republicans in particular – has a clear mandate to cut spending to balance the budget.
In January, Gallup asked for Americans’ opinion on cutting government spending in specific areas. The most popular target for the carving knife was foreign aid — the only expenditure area in which more Americans supported cutting spending than opposed it, 59%-37%.
Cutting funding for arts and sciences ranked second, but just 46% supported those cuts, compared to 52% who opposed. Reducing aid to farmers found support from 44% but opposed by 53%.
Next, Americans rank cuts to homeland security (42%-56%) and national defense (42%-57%). Least popular are cuts to “anti-poverty programs” (39%-55%), Medicare (38%-61%), Social Security (34%-64%) and education (32%-67%).
These numbers alone demonstrate that while balancing the budget is imperative, the path to doing so is a political minefield, demanding vision, determination and strategic messaging.
The most popular cuts are those that affect the fewest Americans directly, illustrating that it’s always easiest to gore someone else’s ox.
Foreign aid spending in fiscal year 2010 tallied just $42 billion or 1.2% of the $3.5 trillion budget. Eliminating foreign aid entirely would reduce the 2010 deficit by 3.2%.
Funding for “arts and sciences” is even more paltry. Combined funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment of the Humanities, and the Commission on Fine Arts totals $283 million. Add the National Science Foundation and the total surpasses $8 billion — 0.6% of the deficit.
Farm income stabilization payments total $18 billion for 2010. All other agriculture research, education and loan programs contribute another $7 billion. Eliminate the entire $25 billion and the deficit is reduced by 1.9%.
Homeland security ($49 billion) has potential for limited reductions, but national defense ($760 billion, not including operations in Iraq and Afghanistan) is already well below the historic average for non-wartime spending and at levels many feel are inadequate to maintain the security of a free nation. As President Washington said, the “most effectual means of preserving peace” is “to be prepared for war.”
Eliminating the U.S. Department of Education — while perhaps unpopular — would cut spending by $92 billion with a negligible impact on classrooms. Yet our hypothetical exercise has narrowed the deficit by just 13%.
The remaining $1.1 trillion deficit demands significant reforms to Medicare, Social Security entitlements and to welfare and health care programs that combine for more than $2.2 trillion annually.
Interest on the debt costs $448 billion — projected to surpass $1 trillion annually in just six years.
Think about that. Just three years ago, the deficit had never approached $1 trillion, but if President Obama serves two terms, his own budget office says interest payments alone will surpass $1 trillion by his final year.
Balancing the budget is not an easy task, but it absolutely must be done. Otherwise, our generation will leave our children and grandchildren with mountains of debt, a stagnant economy, and a worthless dollar — all because we selfishly lived beyond our means and stuck them with the bill.
Mark Hillman served as Colorado Senate Majority Leader and State Treasurer. He is now Colorado's Republican National Committeeman, and a Centennial Institute Fellow. To read more or comment, go to www.MarkHillman.com.
(Centennial Fellow) President Barack Obama, in his State of the Union speech, praised deficit reduction while pledging deficit enlargement, coming across like a phony dieter sneaking ice cream. Only he wasn't sneaking it. He was as much as licking the spoon in front of the nation as he said implausibly that we've got to have splurges of the kind that got us in trouble.
It won't work, least of all a splurge like a national high-speed rail system, which Obama called for and which may sound like fun except that we cannot afford to build it and certainly cannot afford to sustain it. Europe's smart and Europe does it, right? If you call $42 billion in annual government train subsidies smart, yeah, sure, but the benefits we would derive do not equal the price we would pay. Not even close.
We also need to get less dependent on oil, Obama said while pointing as an answer to biofuels, one of which, ethanol, is a mandated, subsidized, special interest scam making your food prices go up while doing zip to give us a cleaner environment. Biofuels of the future might be better, but let's let them prove themselves in the market.
You want jobs, maybe? We're going to get them, says Obama, by government interventions that will put past ones to shame – in energy, for instance. Let me turn society green and watch the jobs grow, he says, only they won't because, as any number of economists have pointed out, government-foisted energy jobs would come at the expense of government-negated energy jobs. As Obama confessed, the government doesn't know what's going to work in many energy fields, and here's the answer he did not agree to. Let the private sector figure it out through capitalist trial and error.
That's a solution that does work, and mightily, as Obama seemed to understand when he told the story of Brandon Fisher, a remarkable young man who started his own company in drilling technology and made the equipment that enabled the rescue of 33 men who might otherwise have died after a mine collapse in Chile. The lesson here is the power of entrepreneurial energy and how it can do one great thing after another if government does not dampen it with too many regulations and uncertainties, taxes that are too high or the threat of economic calamity caused by deficits and debt.
Prior to the speech, Obama had given some hints he was closing in on this reality, as opposed to remaining lost in statist dreams, and in the speech he also had some kind words for cutting back on spending, though not, I am afraid, very meaningful ones.
He talked about a freeze on discretionary spending, which is a tiny piece of the budget and a place that needs serious cuts after the additions he has piled on in just two years. And he talked about a deficit commission's compromise proposal while rejecting one of the most significant parts of it, a recommendation on how to restructure Social Security. His language on this was the language of an uncomprehending demagogue even if it's a known fact that some of his top advisors have agreed with commission points.
What's needed more than money in some of the areas he talked about is reform, if not by the federal government, by the states or localities: Get the tenure out of teaching and get the frills and pork out of publicly financed infrastructure, for instance. Obama needs to get past this notion that it is primarily the federal government that can accomplish anything and understand that its intrusions can in fact have massively disastrous consequences. He needs to lay off the ice cream.
('76 Contributor) As a creative writer, Denver Post columnist Mike Littwin has few peers. However, in his December 3 piece entitled “Duck! Here Comes Extension of Bush-era Tax Cuts”, Mr. Littwin not only wrote creatively, he “created” facts to support his progressive, “soak the rich” nonsense.
At issue is whether or not, during its “lame duck” session, the Congress should extend, temporarily or permanently; in whole or in part, the so-called Bush-era tax cuts passed by an earlier Congress in 2001. Ignoring their wholesale rejection at the polls on November 2, with folks like Mr. Littwin cheering them on, Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives voted 234-188 on December 2 to let many of those 2001 tax cuts expire at the end of this year – a move that would add $700 billion to federal coffers over the next 10 years.
Mr. Littwin contended in his article that “the polls come down clearly on the Democrats’ side” of “soaking the rich” with taxes. That is a product of Mr. Littwin’s “creativity” and is simply not true. According to a recent Gallup poll, only 31 percent of Americans believe the best approach for dealing with the economy is to raise taxes. In contrast, this same Gallup poll reflects that 62 percent of Americans believe that the best way to fix the economy is either through deficit reduction (39 percent) or lower taxes (23 percent).
An opinion article by David Harsanyi in the same December 3 edition of The Denver Post entitled “The Rich Can Afford It; Can We?” had it much closer to the truth. “Progressive taxation,” wrote Mr. Harsanyi, the “soak the rich” policy espoused by Mr. Littwin on the same day, “creates an irresponsible electorate.” More than this, according to The Heritage Foundation, the tax plan approved by the Democrat-controlled lame duck House of Representatives on December 2 would force even more Colorado and American small businesses to shut their doors and thus eliminate hundreds of thousands of additional jobs, thus adding to an already astonishing 9.8 percent unemployment level.
Lost in the November 2 election of Colorado Senator Michael Bennet was what most Coloradans said in 2010 campaign – we want lower taxes, less spending, and reduced regulations.
Somehow, the Democrat-controlled lame duck Congress did not get the message. In his creativity, I doubt that Mike Littwin will ever get the message.