Friday, February 18, 2005

Greenspan Under Attack

Amidst the growing pressure to criticize Alan Greenspan for his complicity in the Bush economic plan (including Social Security privatization), for those who may be reluctant to jump on this Democratic bandwagon it may be helpful to review Kevin Drum's quick summary of Mr. Greenspan's shortcomings:
Here's the Greenspan timeline:

* 1983: Recommended raising payroll taxes far above the amount required to fund Social Security. Since payroll taxes are capped (at $87,000 currently), this was, by definition, an increase that primarily hit the poor and middle class.

* 2001: Enthusiastically endorsed a tax cut aimed primarily at people who earn over $200,000.

* 2003: Ditto.

* 2004: Told Congress that due to persistent deficits Social Security benefits need to be cut.

So: raise payroll taxes on the middle class to create a surplus, then cut taxes on the rich to wipe out the surplus and create a deficit, and then sorrowfully announce that the resulting deficits mean that the Social Security benefits already paid for by the middle class need to be cut.


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