The Simpson-Bowles deficit commission report leaked yesterday is helpful in laying out a path to deficit and debt reduction. It raises taxes and cuts spending, fixes Social Security while busting the fairy tale that SS is fiscally-sustainable. There are many things to find wrong with the plan, but it's a decent basic outline with which to negotiate. Unless you're a Democrat...
Pelosi: "...simply unacceptable."
Schakowsky: "...not at all something I can live with."
Socialist Bernie Sanders: "...something that should be vigorously opposed by the American people."
Perhaps they need to take a closer look at the report. Bowles-Simpson recommend placing a 21% of GDP cap on government tax revenues, but also recommend that the United States hit that 21% mark and stay there forever.
For reference, here's the Heritage Foundation's graph of the total tax burden in the United States since World War II. Tax revenues have never been as high as 21% over this time period. The report recommends raising tax revenue to unprecedented, historical levels. And the Democrats are upset?
If you notice, this proposal raises our tax burden to historically high levels while keeping spending relatively constant. The challenge of the deficit commission has always been constraining future entitlement spending, but this is being done in order to merely maintain 3% below our current level of spending.
This illustrates how dire our current fiscal situation is, but also demonstrates how this proposal is merely a start on getting our government to an acceptable situation.
For your perusing pleasure, here are the Lefty pundits who are decrying the 21% government tax revenue "cap" while ignoring that the Simpson-Bowles report actually recommends hitting that 21% cap quickly and perpetually: Kevin Drum, Ezra Klein, Paul Krugman, Matt Miller.