We have been saying it for a long time around here and once again it is ringing true. While Republican "leaders" play lip service to "bi-partisanship" and "compromise" to them this really means only one thing. That they themselves do not come to the table and offer any concessions whatsoever. And even as members in their rank and file break away and at least consider doing the will of the American people to Republican "leaders" compromise consists entirely of them getting everything they want and giving up nothing in a shameless attempt to shield the greediest and least patriotic among us, themselves included from sacrificing to the mess they made.
Now today we have yet another example. Some Republicans are smart enough to know what the American people said in the last election and are actually considering negotiating in good faith. Such was the case today with Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma, who has seen the writing on the wall and does not want himself or his party to be seen negating the will of the American people:
Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.), a respected party strategist and former chairman of the National Republican Campaign Committee, became the most prominent House Republican to suggest that the GOP do what has long been unthinkable within the party: lock in the George W. Bush-era tax rates for annual incomes up to $250,000 without simultaneously extending them for top earners.
Such a move would amount to a significant victory for Obama in negotiations over the so-called fiscal cliff, and Republican leaders said immediately it was a non-starter.
But of course as always with the modern Republican Party and its "leadership" anything that includes themselves and the very few people they really represent sacrificing to the problems they caused in the last decade with debt, deficits and a crashed economy is simply a non-starter:
"I told Tom earlier in our conference meeting that I disagreed with him," Boehner told reporters after a closed-door meeting of the House Republican Conference. "He's a wonderful friend of mine and a great supporter of mine. But raising taxes on the so-called top 2 percent - half of those people are small-business owners that pay their taxes through their personal income tax filing every year. The goal here is to grow the economy and to cut spending.
Indeed, instead of truly leading as Rep. Cole is attempting to do, the Prince of Orange has decided to simply regurgitate the big Republican lie:
"We won't be party to is a deal that protects big businesses and preserves special-interest tax breaks while raising tax rates on the small businesses we're counting on to create jobs," he said, according to a source in the room.
What the hell is the Prince of Orange talking about? The whole strategy of the Republican "leadership" in the last "fiscal cliff" negotiations and now these is completely and totally a shameless attempt to protect themselves and big business from sacrificing to correct the economy these tax cuts and the income inequality they spur crashed. The only folks who possibly benefit anywhere from the Bush Tax Cuts for the very rich being extended are folks like John Boehner and big business interests. You gotta hear this guy to believe it:
Boehner in the House and McConnell in the Senate have suscribed to the old Nazi strategy of propoganda. They believe the bigger the lie, and the more you repeat it the more likely it is that people will believe it. The simple fact is the Bush Tax Cuts for the very rich do not help small business, the economy or anyone else but those at the very top who have already picked the carcass of American wealth clean.
You do not have to take my word for it though, just listen to what one of these small business owners who Republican "leaders" want you to think they are protecting:
The Senate will vote today on a proposal that will extend Bush-era tax cuts for 98 percent of Americans, but end the extra breaks that are due to expire at the end of the year for the richest 2 percent only (on their take-home income beyond the first $250,000). As a small business owner - my wife and I own and operate an auto repair shop with a dozen employees - I'm all for it. Especially the part about ending extra breaks for the top 2 percent.
Surprised to hear that? If so, I couldn't blame you, not after the debate about the Bush tax cuts has been so thoroughly confused by claims about the possible impact on small businesses. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and other defenders of the tax cuts for the top 2 percent have repeated over and over again the assertion that ending special breaks at the top would harm small businesses. Unfortunately for Sen. McConnell's bargaining position, repeating a false claim over and over again doesn't make it true.
Furthermore, the "trickle down" theory used to justify extra tax cuts at the top simply doesn't work. When the Congressional Budget Office examined close to a dozen options to jumpstart economic activity and job creation in early 2010, including tax cuts for everyone, it found that extending special tax breaks for the richest Americans was the least effective of all 11 options for creating jobs and boosting the economy.
Here's the bottom line: the Bush tax breaks for the top 2 percent are not helping America's small businesses and they're not helping our economy - they're just another giveaway at the top. There are two possibilities for the lobbyists and politicians who argue otherwise: they're either demonstrating just how out of touch they are with real Main Street small businesses, or they're using us as political cover to advance a tax agenda that benefits the richest Americans at our expense.
Yes, the fact of the matter is that Republican "leaders" claims to be protecting small business is just another big lie and they hope repeating it will make Americans believe this garbage once more. However, some of the very small businesses they speak of realize the idiocy of their arguments and are tired of being used as pawns. They want real solutions that will help our country and really help their businesses grow and hire.
America has a choice. We can continue to let the top 2% rob the rest of us blind or we can demand Republican "leaders" use common sense and really attempt to help all Americans, small businesses included.
It is time for Republican leaders to realize we are not falling for the big lie once again.