13 January 2013
The Republicans in Congress are still whining over spending by the federal government. What they won't tell you though is that President Obama has increased spending less than the last eight presidents did (and four of those eight presidents were Republicans). George W. Bush increased spending 5.5 times as much as President Obama has, and even the Republican idol (Ronald Reagan) increased spending 4.9 times as much as President Obama.
It seems the Republicans are not really against increasing government spending, unless it is being done under a Democratic administration. They don't mind at all when it is done by a Republican president. And the increase in spending under President Obama is a direct result of the incompetence of George W. Bush, who threw the nation into recession -- which made it necessary to spend more on unemployment payments, poverty programs, and Food Stamps.
But the real truth is that the small increase in spending under President Obama is not the real problem. The real problem is the cut in revenues made in the Bush administration. When Bush took office, President Clinton had wiped out the deficit (actually creating a surplus) and was starting to pay down the national debt. But Bush, in addition to increasing government spending, made huge cuts in revenues (taxes) -- mainly for the rich and corporations. Now the rich and corporations, both of which are making more money than ever, are paying less taxes than at any time since the Great Depression -- and this has caused the deficit to grow in spite of government cut-backs.
If we are really serious about cutting the deficit, then the government needs to get more revenues. The top tax rates on the rich must be raised at least to what they were in the Clinton administration. In addition, subsidies for corporations (which are no longer needed) should be eliminated. We don't need cuts to the meager payments to keep the poor and the elderly out of a dismal poverty. We just need the rich and the corporations to once again pay their fair share of taxes in this nation (which has given them so much).
Our current deficit is not a spending problem. It is a revenue problem.