Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett may be the most adept politician in America.
With the nation focused upon the union-busting Tea Party-backed Scott Walker in Wisconsin, Corbett has snuck in a plan to mine the state’s resources, increase employment, reduce educational problems, and whack unions upside the head at the same time. Miraculously, the public sector unions, so happy they wouldn’t lose collective bargaining, have even said they don’t mind being whacked.
The “Celtic Tiger” — the Irish economy — has clawed its way back from near extinction, according to the Heritage Foundation. The irony is that the things that Heritage praises about Ireland’s economy are what drove it to the brink of extinction. The “Celtic Tiger” has been caged, de-clawed and neutered. And it was conservative economic policy that did it.
That’s why Heritage keeps bringing it up. It’s hard for conservatives to ignore Ireland, because Ireland was an example of the “success” of conservative economics. Until it wasn’t.
While Congress and the administration — having just passed huge tax cuts for the wealthy — fight over which of the things government does for We, the People to cut and by how much, the rest of us are looking at how many of our jobs this will cost. Will it be a cool million, “only” 200,000, or 700,000 more of us who will lose our livelihoods?
Goldman Sachs issued a report saying the cuts will shave 2 points off GDP (which translates to at least a million jobs).
The Republican response to the painful consequences of their budget cuts runs the gamut from “So be it,” to “So what?”
“So be it,” said Speaker John Boehner to news that Republican budget cuts would slash over 200,000 jobs. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s response to Moody’s analyst Mark Zandi’s report that the GOP’s budget cuts would kill 700,000 jobs can be summed up as, “So what?” A confidential Goldman Sachs report also said the GOP’s proposed cuts would threaten recovery, and slow economic growth.
Whatever you may think of him, you’ve got to give Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, credit. He said he would present his own budget, and now he’s done it. He’s even taken to the pages of The Wall Street Journal to defend it and challenge Republicans and Democrats to: find other places in the budget where cuts can be made, to replace particular programs; consider whether it is worth “borrowing billions from foreign nations,” to fund programs “that could be administered better at the state and local level, or even taken over by the private sector.”
Paul’s challenge underscores the dishonesty of his budget, as well as those proposed by other conservatives. Paul and other conservatives wear their proposed budgets as badges of honor, but they lack the courage to state clearly the human impact of their budget cuts, and the candor to confess the unreality of their proposals.