But once you have the tax threat to the middle class off the table, you will no longer have the overwhelming majority of the nation against you, and you may be able to negotiate something meaningful in exchange for allowing Obama to satisfy his obsession on the two percenters’ tax rate. If the problem to be addressed is indeed the deficit, there are two things you need to ask for. The first is a gradual raise in the age required to obtain retirement benefits, for example by increasing it by one month per year for the next 36 years. This is fundamentally necessary to put these programs into balance because of the large increase in American life expectancy that has occurred since they were created in the 1930s. Furthermore, however, by keeping the most skilled and highest paid part of the workforce on the job for additional time, such a measure will significantly increase the tax base, not just for Social Security, but for general revenue.
The other concession you should seek is an agreement to a freeze on new regulations without congressional approval until unemployment drops below five percent. The Obama administration has put into effect a multitude of job destroying, cost increasing, paperwork proliferating regulations, and threatens to do much worse in the near future. They are literally tying the economy up in red tape. Even the operations of the federal government itself have been severally impaired, as massive paperwork requirements have stalled the issuance of contracts to get anything done. This is why many of the “shovel ready” infrastructure projects funded by the stimulus bill never got their hands on a shovel. Now, new regulations by the EPA threaten to shut down the coal-fired power plants that generate 40 percent of the nation’s power, thereby driving up electricity costs and destroying America’s competitiveness. This war on business needs to stop, or at least be quelled with a temporary truce. Otherwise we will never get the economic recovery we need to generate the new revenues required to really set the nation’s fiscal house in order.
That’s it. Cuts in discretionary programs should not be part of any ten-year grand bargain. Rather they should be dealt with as part of the ordinary legislative process, exactly as mandated by the U.S. Constitution.
This brings me to the final subject; preserving the Constitution. Recently, the administration added to its negotiating position the demand that they be allowed to spend unlimited amounts of money without the consent of Congress. This cannot be accepted, because it would mean abolishing the republic. So if they stick with that demand, there is no choice but to jump the Cliff. But in that case, Americans will all know that the catastrophe occurred not because Republicans were seeking perks for the rich, but because Obama was seeking dictatorial power.
If he takes that leap, it’s his suicide. Right now, it’s yours. Choose your stand wisely.