ah hah!

Their cover is finally blown. It's now in the NYTimes - an explanation for the idiocy of the Bush administration's economic policy, one which is dominated by an $800-billion-plus tax cut delivered to the super-rich in the midst of soaring budgets. The truth should already have been obvious, but the political opposition and the (American) media hasn't put it forward.

The secret? The cost of the tax bill is so large that the nation won't be able to fulfill its obligations to essential, popular programs which have been with us for up to seventy years, and that is precisely the idea behind the policy.

The Financial Times [which Paul Krugman's Times piece describes accurately as "traditionally the voice of solid British business opinion"] suggests that "more extreme Republicans" actually want a fiscal train wreck: "Proposing to slash federal spending, particularly on social programs, is a tricky electoral proposition, but a fiscal crisis offers the tantalizing prospect of forcing such cuts through the back door."

Good for The Financial Times. It seems that stating the obvious has now, finally, become respectable.

It's no secret that right-wing ideologues want to abolish programs Americans take for granted. But not long ago, to suggest that the Bush administration's policies might actually be driven by those ideologues — that the administration was deliberately setting the country up for a fiscal crisis in which popular social programs could be sharply cut — was to be accused of spouting conspiracy theories.

Yet by pushing through another huge tax cut in the face of record deficits, the administration clearly demonstrates either that it is completely feckless, or that it actually wants a fiscal crisis. (Or maybe both.)

Krugman cautions Americans not to continue to underestimate the fiscal and political dangers.
But the people now running America aren't conservatives: they're radicals who want to do away with the social and economic system we have, and the fiscal crisis they are concocting may give them the excuse they need. The Financial Times, it seems, now understands what's going on, but when will the public wake up?
Bush himself may indeed be "feckless," as I've always argued, but I believe there are interests in the White House which know exactly what they are doing.

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Published on May 28, 2003 12:34 AM.

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