Why I Don't Support the Schakowsky Deficit Reduction Plan

Because it's the sucker's play.

So Democratic Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky--a real Democrat, not a Very Serious fiscal 'conservative'--has released her own deficit plan. It's a perfectly good plan: the numbers add up (no magic asterisks, such as 'we will lower Medicare expenses [somehow]'), and as policy, even if one weren't concerned about deficit reduction, it's pretty good.

But, as I've argued before, going along with this deficit reduction mania is a rigged game.

Look, if this whole deficit reduction horseshit doesn't just blow away with the next televised national disaster or missing blond girl, here's how this is going to play out:

1) Schakowsky brings her proposal.

2) Something similar to Bowles-Simpson is proposed.

3) A compromise that is about 90% Bowles-Simpson (BS, if you will) is treated as a Very Serious Proposal and blessed by the Mandarin Class.

4) Shitty policy that, once again, fucks over the Democratic rank-and-file who, given its demographic nature, need help, not 90% BS. Some blogger has the annoying habit of writing "People have to like this crap."

I truly believe Schakowsky means well, but this is so goddamn obvious, yet so many 'progressives' and other sundry Democrats feel the need to take this deficit-reduction seriously.

We defeat them by ignoring their idiocies and fighting on ground of our choosing.

How about a jobs commission?

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... the Mandarin Class.

Uh-oh - a classic Chomsky buzzword!

How can you expect Serious People to take you Seriously when you evoke such a Strident Conspiracist?!?

David Dayen offers a good analysis of what Schakowsky has put on the table - but as you point out, it's the nature of the table itself that needs to be considered.

By Pierce R. Butler (not verified) on 18 Nov 2010 #permalink

Mandarin class is clearly wrong. The Mandarins were expected to have elegant penmanship (well, brush strokes) and to be able to quickly (as a response to a conversational gambit) compose a poem on any topic with no warning. They were also expected to be highly educated in other ways.

In those, and other useless ways with no relevance to any real problems. Nope, I think Mandarin class is just right.

The basic reason to not support deficit reduction plans is because the deficit is the only thing keeping the economy barely afloat. The deficit should be embiggened, not reduced!