The Gimmick Behind the Gimmick

by Yuval Levin
This post by Keith Hennessey, and this follow-up post, are well worth your time. With his trademark clarity, Hennessey systematically dismantles the president’s deficit reduction proposal of earlier this week and the cynical strategy behind it. As he puts it in conclusion:
It’s a legitimate liberal policy position to propose new net deficit reduction of about $1.4 T over the next ten years, almost all of which comes from tax increases on the rich.  That is the President’s policy.  I think it’s terrible policy, but that’s a judgment for the Congress and ultimately for American voters to make. Team Obama knows they will lose the public debate if they actually say that, so they are helping you to draw mistaken conclusions about what they are actually proposing. They are instead pretending to propose $4T of deficit reduction over the next ten years, balanced between “real, serious spending cuts” and tax increases. That is a fundamentally dishonest presentation of the policies the President is actually proposing.

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