Catfood commission’s nine lives

I hardly know where to begin. First of all, it’s clear that the Democrats plan to implement the recommendations of the Catfood Commission, the same recommendations that couldn’t muster enough of the votes it allegedly had to get before it would be presented to the House for a vote. So that’s one really big lie to the American public; we were never meant to have any say, it’s already decided.

Second, this reporter talks about what Mark Warner’s presentation “shows.” It does not “show” anything — it contends, and it is widely disputed by many reputable economists, two of them Noble Prize winners. It is in the same factesque vein of a prosecutor’s opening statement to the jury.

But facts don’t seem to matter anymore, do they?

RICHMOND, Va.—A bipartisan group of senators is close to proposing legislation they hope will force Congress to tackle the federal government’s ballooning debt, and they have begun a road show to win public support.

The proposal would cut the federal budget deficit by $4 trillion over 10 years, roughly four times the savings the White House proposed in February, Sens. Mark Warner (D., Va.) and Saxby Chambliss (R., Ga.) told about 200 business leaders at a meeting in Richmond.

If enacted into law, the plan would likely force Congress to boost revenue through new tax rules, cut spending and bring down the growth rate of Medicare and Social Security over time.

Some executives at the meeting appeared skeptical that a bipartisan deal could eventually win support from Congress and the White House, but many encouraged the lawmakers to try.

“They know they have to do it now and if they don’t do it now, we are going to have other countries in charge of our future,” said Doug Gray, executive director of the Virginia Association of Health Plans trade group, who attended the meeting.

Messrs. Warner and Chambliss are crafting the proposal with Majority Whip Richard Durbin (D., Ill.), Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad (D., N.D.), Tom Coburn (R., Okla.), and Mike Crapo (R., Idaho).

Mr. Warner’s presentation showed that if current trends continued, interest payments on federal debt would skyrocket from more than $20 trillion in 2060 to $80 trillion in 2080. It also showed that U.S. government debt as a percentage of total economic output could soon equal that of Greece, whose fiscal problems have threatened to destabilize Europe.

“If we put this off, we are approaching financial Armageddon,” Mr. Warner said.

The senators said their plan would seek to largely implement the recommendations made in December by the White House’s bipartisan deficit-reduction commission. That group called for cutting spending in myriad government programs, and trimming costs on Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. The proposal was made by commission co-chairmen Democrat Erskine Bowles and Republican Alan Simpson.

5 thoughts on “Catfood commission’s nine lives

  1. Several months ago when I said (at another blog) that I thought someone (or several) would introduce measures in Congress based on that damned report, I was soundly told by several people that that couldn’t happen because the report wasn’t official and that wasn’t the terms of agreement, blah, blah, blah. I countered that all of that didn’t mean someone couldn’t develop a plan that was still based on it even if it wasn’t an “official” report. I guess I was right. I’m not happy about it.

  2. Heh. Anyone really listening to Obama would know he wants that damn Cat Food Commission Crap enacted: Why else did he set it up? For campaigning points? And he will get the Repubs on board and enough ConservaDems in the Senate to make it happen.

    It’s one of the first things he said he would do in the primaries: Fix SocSec, Medicare, Medicaid. It shocked Krugman at the time and scared a lot of Dem voters who paid attention.

    Obama is not our friend. He does not work for us.

    We are so fucked.

  3. None of this will matter soon. The whole world is undergoing an energy contraction and soon governments, states, cities and towns will begin defaulting, going bankrupt, & running out of funds and the resulting chaos, drop in standard of living, and rise in crime will undo “civilization” (which is only the veneer of the surface and will quickly evaporate once the bottleneck ensues). Like the food chain, the insurance industry will collapse, the health care fraud will crumble and everyone who isn’t prepared (most of us) will be “on their own.” With no leadership from the top, we’re as doomed as a third world country.

  4. It’s perhaps not surprising, but still very disappointing, that Durbin is a part of this “plan”.

    Third party, please.

  5. I wonder what the Cherokee are doing tonight.

    I wonder how Pine Ridge is doing tonight.

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