January 25, 2010

The Populist Twins, Joe and O, Hold a Middle-Class Garage Sale!

One of the dangers of watching cable news is that you're always at risk of seeing Joe Biden and/or the Big O coming at you live with little or no warning. At noon today I was bushwhacked by Joe and O as they announced their new old-time religion, "Populism."

In a questionless vacuum chamber stocked with admin shills and a few cameras the Pep Boys, Joe and O, announced a series of new bribes for "the middle class." Unmentioned and perhaps unmentionable was the concept of "healthcare." Instead the four new (or not so new) bribes offered to the "middle class" were as outlined in President Obama and Vice President Biden Preview Initiatives for Middle Class Families

Nearly Doubling the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit for middle class families making under $85,000 a year. This is accomplished by increasing their tax credit rate from 20% to 35% of qualifying expenses. The value of the tax credit nearly doubles for all families making under $85,000 a year, and every family that makes under $115,000 will see their tax credit increase. ... Additionally, for families struggling to join the middle class, the administration will provide a $1.6 billion increase in child care funding, the largest one-year increase in 20 years, to help an additional 235,000 children.
Where the money to make up any revenue shortfall here was, of course, not addressed since that would have meant mentioning "tax increase."
Limiting a student's federal loan payments to 10 percent of his or her income above a basic living allowance. This will lower payments for hundreds of thousands of students, who are struggling to make ends meet coming out of college.
And thereby extending the period the payments will be made from years to decades. Sorry kids, but this way the USA will be out of debt before you are.
Creating a system of automatic workplace IRAs, requiring all employers to give the option for employees to enroll in a direct-deposit IRA.
Yet more requirements for business that make hiring people even more expensive and onerous. Not a lot here for jobs to be saved or created is there? In addition, Biden mentioned in passing a hazy scheme in which the government would match retirement funds with $500 for every $1,000 put in. Where this money is coming from was not stated, but we can assume they'll tax it out to put it in. No mention either of whether or not this would require to employee to put his money into a "social-security-type lock-box" plan run by... the government, but you can bet your boots that's what going on in their seething craniums.
Expanding tax credits to match retirement savings and enacting new safeguards to protect retirement savings, making it easier for families to plan for retirement.
Going to expand the ever-popular FDIC from savings to investment accounts to the point where nobody can ever lose anything by investing in anything? That's going to boom the stock market with the government as the payer of last resort no matter what. Nothing like that for stability in markets. No more busts. Just "Boomlay, boomlay, boomlay, BOOM."
Expanding support for families balancing work with caring for elderly relatives, helping them manage their multiple responsibilities and allowing seniors to live in the community for as long as possible.
Who, I ask you, could possibly be against this sort of thing? Who does not feel and feel deeply for families in this fix? How this is going to be paid for is, like all of the above elements, never touched on. Maybe it will be paid for with all the money we didn't squander on healthcare. You know, the money Joe and O were going to tax out of you hide and borrow from your children's sad future. But hey, why talk about those bummers when we're giving money away today. Step right up, suckers.

Fact sheet released by the White House PDF IS HERE

Posted by Vanderleun at January 25, 2010 9:38 AM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Don't worry! It will "revenue neutral!" Yep.

Posted by: Donald Sensing at January 25, 2010 10:39 AM

How about affirmative action programs for marginally intelligent socialists with unmitigated egos who have been molly-coddled their whole lives? Check

How about hair plugs for the prematurely balding motor-mouthed plagarist? Check

Go O and Joe!

Posted by: Blastineau at January 25, 2010 10:45 AM

You have an amazing knack, Mr. G.---if knack is the word I want---to produce via the medium itself---confusion, dread, gallows humor, and a spiral into madness that matches the message.

Now if you'll excuse me, I am 10 mg low on Thorazine. Must top off the tank.

Posted by: Lance de Boyle at January 25, 2010 11:11 AM

And you, Mr. de Boyle, are my ideal reader.

Posted by: vanderleun at January 25, 2010 11:49 AM

So the federal govt will require employers to automatically set up IRA or 401k accounts for newly hired employees. Money is automatically deducted from employee paychecks into these new savings vehicles. It's good to save for retirement, I'm not knocking it at all.

But, if you are lucky enough to get a job right now, you might be a little bit tight on cash after being out of work & scraping by. Maybe you don't want to start funding your retirement just yet, maybe you'd rather buy groceries or pay down a credit card. You don't get a choice.

Also, there have been rumblings of the federal govt somehow taking control of IRA and 401k accounts and putting the cash in those accts into social security or somesuch. This would certainly make the take from such an action even bigger.

Posted by: Boots at January 25, 2010 12:02 PM

That can't be right.

"Populism" is what evil tea-baggers talk about.

Posted by: mariner at January 25, 2010 3:26 PM