President Clinton's economic adviser Gene Sperling dismissed the adult environment at the Bush White House as the serendipity of having a budget surplus. He explained that the endless all-night jam sessions with panty-less women was the result of "how dramatically different it was to be in a time of deficits." (The connection between having to make important decisions and creating an environment in which it was impossible to make important decisions remains a bit murky.)
By contrast, the Clinton administration had to suffer: "We literally had to present Clinton with scores of potential cuts which could even cost members of Congress or the president himself an election."
What were those programs again? Clinton's big initiatives during his first year in office consisted of: (1) trying to socialize the nation's health care, and (2) attempting to turn the U.S. armed forces into a homosexual focus group. It took Newt Gingrich and the Republicans coming to power to give Americans a puny tax cut.
But in those first few years when he was working with his own party, Clinton raised taxes and created new government programs. No wonder it took interminable hippie jam sessions to put together a budget. Clinton had to figure out precisely how much of a lie his campaign promise of a "middle class tax cut" was going to be.
In addition to having cleared out the pizza boxes, women's panties and plastic cups littering the White House, the calming wind of the Bush administration has created genuine "new Democrats" -- Democrats with a passion for fiscal austerity. As a theoretical matter, they are all for a tax cut. But alas, they are slaves to a balanced budget, and "we" just can't "afford" it right now.
They are, of course, lying. They want our "muffler money" to protect the revenue flow for their useless federal programs.
But the point is: They don't say that. Polls must be telling Democrats they can't support taxes by appealing to Americans' love of government programs anymore. Their current propaganda proves that wonderful government programs aren't selling. Even the Democrats' class-envy demagoguery has lost steam. People hear that the Bush tax cut will give "the rich" a hundred kazillion dollars back, and the average cluck will only get $200 back -- and they think: "OK, gimme my $200."
Consequently, Democrats are left having to hoodwink stupid Republicans (or Maine senators) and the broader public by insisting they can't sleep at night thinking about the debt. Just as abortion-loving Democrats maintain that no one is in favor of abortion, they now claim they also want to make taxes safe, legal and rare. They really do. They just want to balance the budget "first."
One of their ingenious devices for making abortion "rare" was to support a procedure that involves suctioning the brains out of a half-born baby. This is pretty much how their fiscal austerity plan would work, too. Gee, one crackerjack method of making something "rare" is to throw people in prison if they do it. (Why do they want to make abortion "rare" anyway? Is it a little bit of a murder?) And one way to balance the budget is to stop spending money like drunken sailors.
But somehow Democrats and Maine Republicans never get around to the spending part of their fiscal austerity plan. All we know is that it's going to require a lot of taxes. If their mania for a balanced budget is so all-consuming, why can't they ever tell us which useless government bureaucracies they intend to stop lavishing money on?
Any politician who cannot agree with the proposition that no American should send more than a third of what he earns to the federal government ought to be able to say how much -- ideally -- the government should be taking. How about 40 percent? Is that just right? When will we have attained the perfect tax nirvana according to the Democratic Party?
When Reagan was elected, this country had 80 percent marginal tax rates. That barbarism was expunged a mere 18 years ago -- and no thanks to the Democrats. It is a more astonishing fact that 18 years ago the marginal tax rate in the United States of America was 80 percent than that lobotomies were an accepted medical practice a couple decades back.
Get your mufflers now -- before Democrats figure out a way to make taxes any more "rare."