QOTD: nameless White House official

QOTD: nameless White House official

by digby

Via Politico:

“The president has made clear that he wants to work with both sides to see if we can find a caucus of common sense to find a solution to our deficit challenges,” the official told POLITICO.

About those deficit challenges:

John Makin, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, looks at the Congressional Budget Office’s projections and argues that “American fiscal austerity has been moderate and probably . . . has proceeded far enough for now.” A budget deficit that was more than 10 percent of GDP in 2009 is on track to be about half that this year. “The federal budget deficit is shrinking rapidly,” writes Jan Hatzius, the chief economist of Goldman Sachs, in an April 10 report. Goldman estimates that in the first three months of 2013 the deficit was running at 4.5 percent of GDP, and they forecast a deficit of 3 percent of GDP or less in the 2015 fiscal year. Hatzius adds that “there is still a great deal of room for the economic recovery to reduce the deficit for cyclical reasons.”
Great! Maybe we can have a bit of a breather. We've had years of hardship and it would be really great if at the very least, the government could stop with the counter-productive blood-letting and let the economy and our society heal.

Oh crap:

Makin sums it up this way: “Moving forward, it is important for the US Congress to take yes for an answer to the question of whether it has already achieved substantial deficit reduction. Perhaps by accident, Congress has in fact reduced the US budget deficit by enough to enable working at long-term fiscal reform, including the aforementioned reform of the tax and entitlement systems over the next year.”

This fight will never end. We killed the confidence fairy and bond vigilantes turned out to be phantoms. The "90% Debt to GDP" vampires are jokes. Has it changed the elite's desire to cut the meager social insurance programs and enact bogus "tax reform"? Nope. They simply refuse to cry uncle.

If I thought it was possible in any way that by "reform" they meant to make life easier for the old, the sick and the disabled (or even just didn't make things worse)it might make sense to let down our guard. But we know from the president's Grand Bargain budget that he means to cut Social Security, Medicare and medicaid (aka destroying the programs in order to save them) and his opening bid on corporate tax reform is "revenue neutral."

So, we're not out of the woods. Now that austerity has been discredited, they've decided it's good news because it means we can focus on cutting government.