From Anonymous D:
Ok, so I just read an article by Thomas Sowell, notorious right winger. His article, which was a three-parter, probably because it was more than three pages long, discusses the current fiscal cliff. Amusing stuff really. In said article he states that revenue actually went up after the Bush tax cuts, gives you the source to the budget report used by the White House, and is kind enough to give you the page. He actually got the source wrong but I found it anyway. Herein lies the danger, I actually took the time to look up the source material. Turns out, if not complete B.S. it’s at least close enough to smell terrible.
Tax Receipts in billions
Clearly, Government revenue doesn't go up after a tax cut (this is true in 1981-82 with the Reagan tax cuts too). It took four years to get tax revenue up to the pre-tax cut years. In the meantime, we can see from those years what real spendthrifts the Republicans really are as they devastated the budget with dangerous and silly wars with big time government layouts for defense. It’s really interesting to watch the Defense Budget explode. From 281 billion in 2000 to almost 636 in 2009, sadly it’s 672 billion now (that is per year by the way/. Granted with inflation and all it would be difficult to hold the budget steady but you think about this for just a minute. Even if Defense (military) spending held steady at 300 billion/year we would have added to the deficit.
Total Military Spending
Amount above 300 Billion
If I’m not completely wacked in my numbers, our entire fiscal problems can be explained by tax cuts and increased military spending. Granted these are very complicated issues but the B.S. the right is spewing just isn't factual. Even in the Reagan years the government income went down which controverts a popular conservative myth. Sure tax income eventually recovers, but it takes a while. Meanwhile you've taken a wrecking ball to Government.
In further discussion with Anonymous D, he agreed that the big jumps in deficits in 2009-2011 also reflect the bail-outs signed by Bush in 2008, and the further bail-outs and stimulus by Congress & Obama. But there was no 2nd Great Depression, the unemployment rate has come down and the economy is boosted and there will be more tax revenues with a growing economy. Still much more to be done. But I agree, there is no reason to believe right-wing propaganda, especially when they contort the data. There is a clear link between unfunded wars and deficits.
The only war that helped the economy was WWII with full mobilization of the entire country, massive deficit spending, and the GI Bill, Housing assistance for Vets after the war, etc., and even the Interstate Highway stimulus providing full employment and a growing economy with Eisenhower after Korea. The economy grew.
In a post soon to come, I will debunk conservative propaganda about Kennedy tax cuts. They were a stimulus along with significant deficit spending (Apollo Program, War on Poverty) to boost the economy along with science and infrastructure. Viet Nam debt then devastated the economy.
Being a fellow at the Hoover Institute tells me about all I need to know about Sowell's reactionary economic views.
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