I guess I remain a lone wolf on this. I guess I’m the only one who thinks what I think about this. And I’ll just repeat it very briefly. I spent an hour explaining this last week, but I’m gonna sum it up very quickly. I think what Barack Obama is attempting to do here is get the Republicans to confess. I think he wants the Republicans to concede that every economic problem in this country is because taxes have been cut on the successful. Not just the rich, but on the successful, on people who’ve achieved. I think Obama is after the notion that 200 plus years of capitalist economics has led us to this point. Capitalism is to blame, part and parcel of capitalism, the Republican Party, conservatism, and tax cuts, quote, unquote, for the rich.
I think what Obama’s doing here is a modified FDR. He’s attempting to stack the deck for a couple of generations, with liberals and Democrats winning election after election after election because they’re the party of benefits, not features. And the benefits accrue immediately, while the Republicans talk about philosophy, and, in fact, the Republicans don’t talk about philosophy. Pete Wehner, my buddy, used to work for Bill Bennett, then worked for Rove at the Bush White House, then went to the Romney campaign. He has a piece at Commentary: “What If Conservatives Have Lost the Argument?” And I’m going to explain this. I did not even intend to mention this right now. This is how my mind is working. I’ll get to it later in the program, but I’ll just answer it very quickly. We haven’t made it.
Throughout this entire presidential campaign, we did not make the argument for low taxes equaling economic growth. We didn’t make that. We were afraid to. Even Romney was assuring people that taxes on the rich would not go down. Even Romney, the Republican Party stood for taxes on the rich either going up or staying the same. Anyway, more on that as a program unfolds. What I’m telling you is that Obama is attempting to get the Republican Party to — I don’t mean that Boehner stands up and says, “I confess, we’re the problem.” That’s not how it’s gonna happen. It’s gonna happen by virtue of votes, caves, and policy.
Republicans are going to agree to raise taxes, and in the process they’re conceding that tax increases are the answer, and tax cuts have been the problem. The Republicans are finally admitting what we’ve known for 200 plus years. If you don’t have a job it’s because we’ve cut taxes from the rich. If your home is underwater it’s because we’ve cut taxes at some point in this country. The Reagan tax cuts are immoral, unjust. The Bush tax cuts are immoral and unjust. Gotta go back to the Clinton rates. Yeah, okay, as I mentioned months ago, let’s go back to Clinton era spending. Well, we can’t really do that. You think the Republicans might submit a 1998 budget? What would be wrong? You guys like the Clinton tax rates. Here it is. “Oh, you can’t go back to spending at 1998 levels. Why, circumstances are all different.” Well, why do you say we can on taxes? Anyway, they’re not making the argument.