Here is the bottom line for the Congressional Progressive Caucus Budget:
• Deficit reduction of $5.6 trillionAll of this without cutting Social Security or Medicare or Medicaid benefits.
• Spending cuts of $1.7 trillion
• Revenue increase of $3.9 trillion
• Public investment $1.7 trillion
But you will hear nothing of this budget outside of the rarified precincts of liberal blogs, and maybe between 8 and 11 on MSNBC.
On the other hand, we hear about the Ryan Budget non-stop. Yes, there's some excuse for covering it -- it was passed by the House and endorsed by Romney. Most of the coverage of it has been fawning and uncritical, with Krugman and a few other lonely voices calling it the Dickensian reactionary budget that it is. (Of course, our hope is that the Ryan Budget will be a millstone around Romney and the GOP's neck, but the Scarboroughs of the world are doing their best to legitimize it somehow.)
This budget "debate" is a particularly galling example of how non-liberal the media really is. The debate is defined as:
Ryan on the Right.As for the CPC budget . . . crickets, radio silence, a vacuum, falling in a forest, below the radar, "not a factor," etc. A classic example of splitting the difference between the far right and the middle with something "center right."
Obama on the "left."
Simpson Bowles in the "middle"
But the Villagers kneel in awed worship of Simpson-Bowles. To Thomas Friedman, Simpson-Bowles is as essential an accessory as his moustache and turtle-neck; It's Friedman's Rosetta Stone, Ark of the Covenant, Holy Grail and Ring of Power rolled up into one document. Apparently, he actually believes this:
Republicans will never vote for an “Obama plan.” But had Obama embraced the bipartisan “Simpson-Bowles,” and added his own stimulus, he would have split the G.O.P., attracted gobs of independents and been able to honestly look the country in the eye and say he had a plan to fix what needs fixing.Friedman undoubtedly heard this from a cab driver on Plan(et) 9 from Outer Space, who has never heard of John Boehner, Eric Cantor, Steve King and Louis Gohmert, and believes that endorsing a plan that cuts social security would attract "gobs of independents." And the idea that the GOP would accept any Obama Plan just because it has the magical name "Simpson-Bowles" is on the borderline of naivite and insanity.
Given this media blackout, it's up to us to spread the word about the CPC budget. Over the Ornate Orange Curtain Symbol is a summary of a One-Page Handout about it. Send it to the next right winger (brother in law or otherwise) who says "At least Ryan has proposed a budget. The Democrats have not proposed anything." (I see that everywhere now.)
The Progressive Budget:
Eliminates the Deficit and Raises a $31 Billion Surplus In Ten Years.
Protects Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and responsibly eliminates the deficit by targeting its main drivers: the Bush Tax Cuts, the wars overseas, and the causes and effects of the recent recession.
Trains teachers and restores schools; rebuilds roads and bridges and ensures that users help pay for them.
Invests in job creation, clean energy and broadband infrastructure, housing and R&D programs Our Budget Creates a Fairer Tax System.
Ends the recently passed upper-income tax cuts and lets Bush-era tax cuts expire at the end of 2012.
Extends tax credits for the middle class, families, and students
Creates new tax brackets that range from 45% starting at $1 million to 49% for $1 billion or more.
Enacts a health care public option and negotiates prescription payments with pharmaceutical companies.
Prevents any cuts to Medicare physician payments for a decade Our Budget Safeguards Social Security for the Next 75 Years.
Eliminates the individual Social Security payroll cap to make sure upper income earners pay their fair share
Cuts defense spending by reducing conventional forces, procurement, and costly R&D programs.