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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

Republican Incredible Lack of Credibility

Category: GOP Politics
Posted: 07/27/11 10:29

by Alan Anderson

I believe we are playing with fire. Some Republican leaders tell us that failing to raise the debt limit won?t really hurt our economy. Then they tell us they have a plan to eliminate $1 trillion in expenses?and an independent government budget office suggests they are off by $150 billion dollars. Could it be that they aren?t always correct? The fact is, they have consistently been wrong in predicting the future. Part of the reason is they deal with ideals, not with what is real.

History and reality seem to undermine their beliefs. For example, these leaders and their party believed that reducing taxes on the wealthy and reducing government regulation would lead to a strong, robust economy. History and reality show us it led to the worst recession since the Great Depression, with trillions lost in property values, millions losing their homes to foreclosure, millions losing their jobs, and an unemployment rate that has remained high for several years.

These leaders and their party believed the Iraq war would be short, cost few lives, and be paid for by Iraqi oil revenues. History and reality tell us the war will cost $4 trillion dollars, cost the lives of more than 5000 Americans and 300,000 Iraqis, and last almost a decade with no real end in sight. These leaders told us that deregulating businesses would result in a safer environment. History and reality tell us the BP disaster in the Gulf and the Massey mining disaster killing almost 30 people could have been avoided with tighter regulation by people not connected to the industries they oversee. These leaders told us that a government economic stimulus package would not create jobs and would have a negative effect on the economy. History and reality tell us that hundreds of thousands of jobs in education and other areas were preserved and that the American auto industry was saved from bankruptcy. General Motors success is a sign that the stimulus worked as intended.

These leaders told us that shutting down government by fighting to keep the wealthiest Minnesotans and Americans from paying a penny more in taxes or raising our debt ceiling would not harm the economy and create further problems. History and reality suggest Minnesota?s credit rating has already been lowered, Moodys is considering reducing the rating on US credit, and thousands of government and private sector workers have lost their jobs or will lose their jobs soon. California has arranged to borrow more than $5 billion dollars to deal with a potential government default.

We have a real dilemma. Some of our leaders believe in pure ideals, that simply cutting taxes, spending, and government regulation will produce economic and social benefit. History and reality suggest that this is not the case. It appears that no amount of reality or history will change their minds and attitudes, and they appear willing to let the majority of the states and nation suffer the real consequences of their rigid thinking. Time will tell the outcome of this division of beliefs and lack of reality. History and reality suggest their long tradition of errors will continue; that they will incredibly continue their lack of credibility.
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Pawlenty's Iowa Pander Strategy Continues.....

Category: Tim Pawlenty
Posted: 07/27/11 01:06

by Dave Mindeman

Tim Pawlenty is trying to convince Iowa Republicans that budget stuff is some kind of expertise that he can expound on....

"The debt limit is a line in the sand where Republicans can force the tough decisions to fix our nation's finances, and taxpayers cannot afford for us to back down now. I am for the plan that will cut spending, cap it, and pass a balanced budget amendment, but unfortunately this latest bill does not accomplish that."

OK - let's review.

Then Governor Pawlenty took a state budget, which already has a Constitutional mandate to balance its budget, and borrowed $1.8 billion from school funding. He then proceed to use gimmicks and one time money to leave office with the state in a near $6 billion hole.

This is the guy who is giving budget advice? This is the guy who criticizes Speaker Boehner's budget because it isn't enough?

I guess it is just another continuation of the "Iowa pander" strategy for Pawlenty. "Please Iowa, believe what I say, and don't pay any attention to what I actually did."

The only good thing for Minnesota is that Pawlenty is not our governor anymore and can't act on any of these irrational ruminations.

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"Not One Penny More" Adds Billions to Future MN Obligations

Category: GOP Politics
Posted: 07/25/11 17:20, Edited: 07/25/11 18:41

by Dave Mindeman

The more you learn about the debt that the GOP has foisted upon the State of Minnesota, the less you like it.

It looks like those $640 million in tobacco bonds are actually going to cost the state $1.2 billion if you include the $640 million in interest that will result. That's right...the MN GOP is going to double your exposure in order to keep that bogus $34 billion budget figure.

So, let's take stock.

The Republican budget proposal pushed aside over $2 billion in education funding to be paid later....if at all. That original $1.4 to $1.6 billion "unallotment" number was still supposed to be part of the current budget (everybody kind of forgets that), yet it was pushed ahead yet again to reduce the daunting deficit. Dayton agreed to this from the outset, so there was never much opportunity for this to be resolved.

But Republicans added another $700 million to this ed shift figure and moved to a virtual guarantee of a $2 billion deficit to start the next cycle.

Then, they decide that their other idea will be tobacco bonding. This coupled with the interest puts the state into another $640 million deficit coupled with $640 million in interest, for a total of a $1.2 billion bill for the our education deficited kids.

Billions and billions of dollars of future exposure for our state...all because the Republicans didn't want "one penny more" added to a budget figure that has been blown wide open in reality.

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