WaPo editors: Golly, Obama’s fiscal-cliff approach is unbalanced

posted at 10:01 am on December 14, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Barack Obama keeps claiming that he wants a “balanced” approach to deficit reform, but the editors of the Washington Post have a little difficulty trying to figure out what he means by “balanced” — since his proposals have had a 4:1 ratio of tax hikes to spending cuts.  The Post also notes that Obama has backed away from even the inadequate entitlement reforms he’s previously embraced.  Why, the Post’s editors suggest, Obama may not really be serious about this whole deficit-reform idea.

You think?

Since the election last month, a few modest proposals have been floated to slow the growth in entitlement spending. None of these would fix the problem, but they would at least acknowledge that a problem exists. One by one, the ostensible advocates of balance have shot them down, portraying each in turn as a mortal threat to the poor or the aged.

Nudging the Medicare eligibility age from 65 to 67, which President Obama supported last year? Unconscionable. Changing the way cost-of-living adjustments are calculated, which Mr. Obama also supported? Brutally unfair to veterans and seniors. Reform of Medicaid provider taxes, which liberal Senate Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.) only days ago described as a “charade” used by states to jack up funding from Washington? Unthinkable,the White House now says:In fact, with the Supreme Court having struck down a facet of Mr. Obama’s Affordable Care Actinvolving Medicaid, nothing in that program can be touched. And, while they’re at it, put Social Security off the table, too. We’re asked to accept the mythology that, though the pension and disability program is facing ever-widening shortfalls, it isn’t contributing to the overall deficit. …

There are better and worse ways to bend the entitlement curve. Raise the Medicare age, but shield the neediest seniors. If you think Republicans are proposing the wrong way to adjust the cost-of-living index, finance expert Robert C. Pozen has proposed a progressive alternative.

But there’s no way to fix America’s problem without doing something on entitlements. If the Democrats — and Mr. Obama, in particular — don’t get more seriously into that discussion, they have no standing to complain about the Republicans’ lack of balance.

Balance … balance … hmmm:

It’s clear that the White House isn’t interested in balance.  They’re not interested in fixing the budget deficits, either.  They are interested in punishing success and maintaining the ability to redirect funds for their own political benefit.  That’s unbalanced, and not just in the ledger sense, either.


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Love the front picture of the donkey.

sharrukin on December 14, 2012 at 10:03 AM

D’oh!

cmsinaz on December 14, 2012 at 10:04 AM

Douchebag WP editors still endorsed Obama.

sentinelrules on December 14, 2012 at 10:05 AM

They have no standing

But that’s OK the lsm has his back and the gop will get the blame

All hail dear leader

cmsinaz on December 14, 2012 at 10:05 AM

WaPo editors: Golly, Obama’s fiscal-cliff approach is unbalanced

Ya, unbalanced, kind of like Erick Holders application of the US Constitution is unbalanced.

SWalker on December 14, 2012 at 10:05 AM

Racists – I always suspected that about WaPo.

Drained Brain on December 14, 2012 at 10:07 AM

in other news, water is still wet.

gsherin on December 14, 2012 at 10:08 AM

Hahahahaha

The WaPo has now become a joke. Everyone knows if we need more money we can just print it.

- liberal intellectual

darwin on December 14, 2012 at 10:09 AM

Why is it always SS & MC brought up when discussing entitlements as if they were the only ones out there. I know, they are the biggest, but SS does have all those IOUs in the lock box. There are other entitlements that could stand cutting besides those 2. Cut some of that foreign aide especially to countries that don’t like us. Cut the number of aides to congress. They can work a little harder if they stay out of camera range long enough.

Kissmygrits on December 14, 2012 at 10:10 AM

This is as far as the CraPo will go in blaming Barky for anything.

Bishop on December 14, 2012 at 10:15 AM

WaPo editors: Golly, Obama’s fiscal-cliff approach is unbalanced

…they just wake up from a 4 year nap?
…they never looked at the last two budgets the Senate and House totally laughed at?
P O S

KOOLAID2 on December 14, 2012 at 10:17 AM

Let it Burnnnnnn

Hummer53 on December 14, 2012 at 10:24 AM

Come on WaPo…we don’t need spending cuts because their is no debt problem….
…..that’s just propaganda made up by the right wing so that they can steal money from the poor and give it to the Koch Brothers.

Baxter Greene on December 14, 2012 at 10:25 AM

It’s clear that the White House isn’t interested in balance. They’re not interested in fixing the budget deficits, either. They are interested in punishing success and maintaining the ability to redirect funds for their own political benefit. That’s unbalanced, and not just in the ledger sense, either.

Dear Liar wants to crash the system, so he can impose his own marxist one.

rbj on December 14, 2012 at 10:25 AM

Obama may not really be serious about this whole deficit-reform idea.

Doi.

The Rogue Tomato on December 14, 2012 at 10:25 AM

“shared sacrifice” is another one of Obama’s tropes. The reality he wants the majority to share the fruits of the sacrifice of the minority.

Don’t even get me started on his use of “our values.”

SAMinVA on December 14, 2012 at 10:31 AM

It’s clear that the White House isn’t interested in balance. They’re not interested in fixing the budget deficits, either. They are interested in punishing success and maintaining the ability to redirect funds for their own political benefit.

i attribute this zany rant to the feeling of powerlessness.

sesquipedalian on December 14, 2012 at 10:35 AM

i attribute this zany rant to the feeling of powerlessness.

sesquipedalian on December 14, 2012 at 10:35 AM

…why is there a picture of you here…pulling a cart?

KOOLAID2 on December 14, 2012 at 10:37 AM

Dear Liar wants to crash the system, so he can impose his own marxist one.

rbj on December 14, 2012 at 10:25 AM

Chavez Lite will have to get busy – only 2 years left to bring the system down….
2014 elections will be a repeat of 2010…..then total gridlock until 2016.
Hopefully a 20% unemployment rate and 10% inflation will shock enough people
to resist Obummers Marxism….Nah!!! Who am I kidding…..

redguy on December 14, 2012 at 10:39 AM

…why is there a picture of you here…pulling a cart?

KOOLAID2 on December 14, 2012 at 10:37 AM

cause i pull while others are content being pulled.

sesquipedalian on December 14, 2012 at 10:40 AM

cause i pull while others are content being pulled.

sesquipedalian on December 14, 2012 at 10:40 AM

Only fair since you and your ilk created those who need to be pulled.

Night Owl on December 14, 2012 at 10:43 AM

Obama is unbalanced.

Typical of a Harvard tourist whelped by dysfunctional alcoholic swinger parents whose wanton excesses quickly caught up with them via the dirt nap early in life. Much the same reason Clintoon turned out as he did.

viking01 on December 14, 2012 at 10:59 AM

What spending cuts?

MNHawk on December 14, 2012 at 11:00 AM

Did someone at WaPo suddenly wake up?

GarandFan on December 14, 2012 at 11:02 AM

Excellent post, Ed.

ITguy on December 14, 2012 at 11:03 AM

FACT: The Bush Tax Cuts lowered tax rates for everyone who pays taxes.

FACT: Tax revenues went UP, not down, after the passage of the 2003 Bush Tax Cuts.

FACT: FY 2007 revenues were a whopping 44% larger than FY 2003 revenues!

FACT: Employment increased from 62.0% of the civilian non-institutional population age 16+ in September 2003 to 63.4% in December 2006 (the last month that Republicans controlled the House, Senate, and Presidency).

FACT: In the wake of the 2003 Bush Tax Cuts, both employment and revenues improved every year for serveral years.

FACT: It was not until Democrats took majority control of Washington, D.C. that employment and revenues decreased.

FACT: Employment has been below 59% since September 2009, and shows no sign of improving (it was actually down a tenth of a point last month to 58.7%).

OPINION: If employment and revenues both improved in the wake of the 2003 Bush Tax Cuts, isn’t it logical to assume that reversing any of those cuts will have a reverse outcome? I.E., if tax rates are allowed to go up, then both employment and revenues will get worse, not better.

ITguy on December 14, 2012 at 11:22 AM

Basically what WAPO is saying is, “Hey, Obama, if you want us to keep covering your a$$, we’re gonna need a little help from you, even if our readers are just useful idiots.”

lea on December 14, 2012 at 11:22 AM

Barack Obama keeps claiming that he wants a “balanced” approach to deficit reform, but the editors of the Washington Post have a little difficulty trying to figure out what he means by “balanced

I’m sure the lights were burning late at the WaPo building on 17th Street trying to find a way to explain “balanced.” That they failed to carry the water for the rat-eared wonder further convinces me that the GOP should suggest where the commie should stick his plan. Balanced is going to include cutting entitlements now- not some future plan down the road that will never happen.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Basically what WAPO is saying is, “Hey, Obama, if you want us to keep covering your a$$, we’re gonna need a little help from you, even if our readers are just useful idiots.”

lea on December 14, 2012 at 11:22 AM

Hey! I’m seldom useful.

Happy Nomad on December 14, 2012 at 11:24 AM

Would it be possible to start a “Duh” or “Captain Obvious” thread at the end of each day to recognize these so-called journalist geniuses having a moment of lucidity?

rsherwd65 on December 14, 2012 at 11:28 AM

Someone needs to tell WaPo folks that it was Washington (State) not Washington (DC).

But, then again…..

Jabberwock on December 14, 2012 at 11:46 AM

The Democrats don’t want any compromise. They want the media to balst the Republicans so they can finally get rid of the Bush tax cuts they objected to from day 1. This story just shows you that the media is finally waking up to this fact, but will still fight for the President regardless of the facts.

djaymick on December 14, 2012 at 11:49 AM

This is not about compromise or balance.

This is about Democrats returning to what they are all about – tax and spend. Obama and the Democrats simply want new revenue to buy more votes.

Instead of Obamaphones, he will buy new votes with Obamapads, while forcing the rich to pay for them because, gee golly, 60% of people not effected by the tax increases should naturally be able to force a voiceless minority (and make no mistake, in today’s electoral climate, even though the rich have money, their voices are drowned out) to pay for their crap.

milcus on December 14, 2012 at 11:57 AM

Bronco Bamma and the Democrat Congress spent us into this h*ll hole and then they pretend that it is the Republican’s fault. Yet the Republicans stand around and never fight back. Never. They never repeat the economic history that the Democrats have done to us. They never tell the story of how we got here. They act like whipped puppies time after time after time.

The Democrat Party is the face of Communism and has been for over 70 years. Regular patriotic people never thought it would get to this. The Democrats have their own people afraid of Republicans and that is why we lost. We never, ever fought back. Bush didn’t do it and our candidate didn’t do it. Now we are fighting for our lives and still no one will do it.

So we are stuck with trillions of dollars in debt that Bronco spent just in less than three years. He’s claiming that it’s Bush’s and the Republicans’ fault. Everything is the Republicans’ fault and nary a Congress Critter will stand up and truthfully asses the situation. They depend on Rush, Levin, and Hannity to do it. Actual Republicans need to do it. Where is our propoganda machine?

BetseyRoss on December 14, 2012 at 11:59 AM

Warren Buffet’s WAPO is questioning Obama? Guess the bammer isn’t following the Buffet plan

Who knows, maybe the bammer will figure out a way to pull Buffet’s plug too

entagor on December 14, 2012 at 12:00 PM

trying to figure out what he means by “balanced”

Obama knows that the word “balanced” polls well.

But it polls well because people want a “balanced” budget.

When Obama uses the word “balanced”, you won’t ever hear him follow that with the word “budget”. Obama almost always follows it with the word “approach”.

But to Obama, a “balanced approach” does not mean a balanced budget, and it does not even mean a balance of tax increases and spending cuts.

To Obama, a “balanced approach” simply means that he will not accept anything that doesn’t increase taxes on the “rich” and redistribute wealth to his constituencies.

PERIOD.

If a plan doesn’t take from the “rich” and give to his voters, then Obama will say that that plan isn’t “balanced”.

ITguy on December 14, 2012 at 12:04 PM

If even the Washington Post is noticing that Obama is not serious, then maybe Republicans in Congress should start saying it loudly and repeatedly. The media will still take Obama’s side, but they will have less and less credibility. Let them go down together.

tom on December 14, 2012 at 12:19 PM

WaPo stumbles across the obvious – d’oh

WaPo reports it – a surprise.

At any rate, to reiterate what I have said in this forum before – Obama holds all the cards right now on the tax issue, in addition to having been reelected after campaigning on raising taxes. The taxes will hurt – but not kill – our nation. Give him what he wants. Sign into law a bill to make all tax cuts for people under $250k permanent and send it to him yesterday. Let the left own all the rest of the tax hikes.

Where to hold the line is on the debt ceiling. The accumulation of debt really could kill our nation. Demand Obama and the left come up with a plan to reduce the deficit by 25% by the end of his term, and send us over that cliff, refusing to authorize any increase until he submits a plan that passes both houses and is signed into law – attached to which is the REINS act to stop Obama from going around Congress to govern America.

Actually that last bit might be the most important of all, as it would go along way to restoring the Constitutional balance between Congress, who is supposed to have sole legislative authority per Art. I of the Constitution, and the regulatory agencies under executive control, which are run amock.

Wolf Howling on December 14, 2012 at 2:19 PM