Thursday, March 21, 2013

Not The Only Game In Town

Charlie Pierce explains that while the Paul Ryan exercise in repetitive motion syndrome for budgets is getting all the attention, there’s actually another plan that makes more sense and actually works.  Which means it has no chance whatsoever of getting debated, much less passed.

There’s a lot of buzz at and around the Cool Kidz table today because, glorioski, there’s actually another budget proposal out there, the one put together by the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and it not only seems to make more sense to more people than, for example, Paul Ryan’s exercise in Magical Unicorn Math, or even than the principles underlying the president’s proposal, which seem to be that, before we act on it, we should carefully check the Magical Unicorn’s work before appointing the unicorn to the Council Of Economic Advisers. Moreover, that budget is certainly more consonant not only with the blog’s First Law Of Economics — Fk The Deficit. People Got No Jobs. People Got No Money — but also with the results of the latest Gallup Poll, the sub-themes of which latter is, quite clearly, “Why In Hell Are We Listening To Joe Scarborough On This Stuff Anyway?”

That’s 77 percent of the respondents who want some sort of WPA 2.0 to make sure the bridges don’t fall down while we’re driving to work. That’s 75 percent who want a federal jobs creation program. These two numbers include, respectively, 63 percent and 56 percent of Republican respondents. You could poll Paul Ryan’s immediately family and not get these numbers. Neither Mr. Simpson nor Mr. Bowles could score this well on Christmas morning with the grandkids. You could ask Americans the question, “Would you favor immediate federal action that would provide you with unlimited whiskey and the sexual favors of your favorite movie stars?” and come close. Maybe. Does the House progressive budget, which proposes programs that track these numbers, have a chance in hell of passing? Of course not. It’s barely in the conversation.

The main reason it’s barely in the conversation is because the plan bears the unfortunate label of “progressive.”  That immediately dooms it among the Villagers because as we all know, progressives never win elections or the White House.  The only people who are serious about reducing the deficit and not blowing all sorts of money on wasted efforts like schools, roads, and bridges in America are conservatives.  After all, look at all the money we spent on stuff like that in Iraq and where did it get us?