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The nation's chief catfood peddlers are back, harassing Congress with yet another plan based on an economic theory of austerity from economists Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff that has been effectively debunked, that is riddled with errors and bases conclusions on, among other things, an Excel spreadsheet coding mistake. But the Very Serious People, and Paul Ryan, have seized upon this flawed theory to push their longstanding agenda of punishing the poors and the olds. And Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles have another rehash of their plan to give massive corporate tax breaks and punish old people.
“If Al and I take the slings and arrows, we’re fine with that,” Bowles said. “Anytime you can get people discussing new and different and hopefully better ways to get a deal done, then you’ve got a better chance of accomplishing it.”
Like the president, Bowles and Simpson call for replacing automatic federal spending cuts with other reductions and raising taxes to reduce the deficit. It is projected to be $845 billion in fiscal 2013, or 5.3 percent of the gross domestic product.
Once again, they want to raise the Medicare eligibility age to 67, though those 65 could buy in. Now if they lowered the buy-in age to 50, maybe the the raised eligibility age wouldn't be such a problem, but of course that would be a progressive, smart change to Medicare that would actually help a lot of people and shore up Medicare, so it's not an option for B-S. They would also expand means testing for Medicare, part of the $585 billion in cuts from health-care spending. It also includes, of course, chained CPI for Social Security.
And it would lower tax rates while using the chained CPI for tax brackets as well as Social Security, which would raise taxes for everyone, especially the middle class. Most special of all, it would reduce taxes on big corporations overseas income. Of course. That's who's bankrolling the never-ending B-S dog and pony show.
Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 08:57 AM PDT.