Is the Obama Tax Deal Really 'Stimulus II'?

In D.C., 'bipartisan consensus' usually means reckless spending

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Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer castigates the “professional left” for railing at the Obama-GOP tax cut deal, arguing it’s “Stimulus II” in everything but name.

In the process, Dr. the K also reveals that he’s been disabused of the Wehner Delusion (defined by yours truly as the “quixotic belief that, this time--really, no foolin’--the people and their representatives have gotten serious about cutting spending”):

[D]espite a very weak post-election hand, Obama got the Republicans to offer to increase spending and cut taxes by $990 billion over two years. Two-thirds of that is above and beyond extension of the Bush tax cuts but includes such urgent national necessities as windmill subsidies.

No mean achievement. After all, these are the same Republicans who spent 2010 running on limited government and reducing debt. 

Krauthammer’s partisan disillusionment is matched, in the “objective” news media, (see here and here, for examples), by conventional wisdom-y pronouncements that the deal has reoriented Obama toward the political center, and will ultimately help restore his appeal among independents.

[See photos of the Obamas behind the scenes.]

I agree--only I think that’s precisely the problem. Just when politicians seem like they’re acting reasonably is probably when they’re acting the most recklessly.

Independent voters are, many of them, utterly uninformed and (substantively speaking) not worth appealing to, and the Washington sacrament known as “bipartisan consensus” more often than not leads to transpartisan irresponsibility.

In the meantime, I will note that, per Dr. the K, we deficit hawks are apparently going to have more (subsidized) windmills at which to tilt.

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