But don’t worry, if we just appease the Republicans this once, they’ll stop being mean to us.
President-elect Barack Obama plans to include about $300 billion in tax cuts for workers and businesses in his economic recovery program, advisers said Sunday, as his team seeks to win over Congressional skeptics worried that he was too focused on government spending.
The legislation Mr. Obama is developing with Congressional Democrats will devote about 40 percent of the cost to tax cuts, including his centerpiece campaign promise to provide credits up to $500 for most workers, costing roughly $150 billion.
So Obama is talking tax cuts because it will help us avoid another Great Depression, because it was a campaign promise (and for some unexplained reason those must be implemented immediately), or because we’re trying to buy off the Republicans? Two of those three reasons have nothing to do with the purpose of this legislation. (Joe discovered a fourth reason for including more tax cuts: “To get 80 votes in the Senate.” It’s also not clear what that has to do with saving the economy from a Depression.)
PS I wonder if upper middle class Obama voters in big expensive cities will see a dime of these ever-expanding tax cuts?
UPDATE: Okay, I just visited Josh Marshall’s “Talking Points Memo” and saw that Josh had posted about this story late last night. Here is what Josh had to say:
Can someone help me come up with an argument for why the Obama stimulus plan isn’t turning out to be a painful joke?
A painful joke? Ouch. As I’ve written before, when Josh gets snarky about Democrats it makes for an interesting bellwether – especially when the Democrat is Barack Obama. Here is what I wrote about Josh, and his concerns about Obama, back in August:
When Josh exhibits this kind of frustration publicly, we take notice. Josh is one of the cooler heads in the blogosphere. He’s not as prone to fits of temper as, well, I might be. And he has a solid background in journalism that gives him a certain gravitas that the corporate media respects. So when Josh starts to blow a gasket, even in his typically subdued way, it means something.
All the effort going into getting Republicans on board. I wonder if anyone will try to get actual Democrats on board as well.