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Defense Lobby Wins, Middle Class Loses In Obama Debt Proposal

By       Message Richard Eskow     Permalink
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How does this cynical lobby create a political climate in which a proposal that cuts benefits and raises taxes for the middle class is the liberal side of the debate?

That's where "Fix the Debt" comes in. This supposedly unbiased group of CEOs is only the latest incarnation of a longstanding anti-tax, pro-giant-corporation lobbying web. This entity goes by many names: The "Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget." The "Comeback America Initiative." "The Can Kicks Back." And many more.

Please allow me to introduce myself ...

The Usual Suspects

But while the names change, the players stay the same -- including Alan Simpson, Erskine Bowles, and corporate and defense-industry stealth super-lobbyist Maya MacGuineas.

So do their "unbiased" recommendations: Lower tax rates for millionaires, billionaires, and corporations (in the name of deficit reduction, no less) eviscerate Social Security and Medicare and turn their functions over to private corporations.

They say they want a "national conversation" about government debt. But when defense spending comes up they always change the subject.

Peace On Earth, Goodwill Toward Raytheon

The latest "lucky" break for defense contractors came just today, as Senate and House negotiators from both parties agreed to protect defense contractors from some of sequestration's worst features.

"A leading industry organization cheered (the) changes," reported the Washington Business Journal"... which softened the potential blow for contractors in the areas of workforce, compensation, and oversight."

Congratulations, contractors, on this unexpected stroke of good fortune. Now who'll soften the blow for the rest of us?

"Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals," said Eisenhower, "so that security and liberty may prosper together."

Obama and Pelosi are pushing a deal that lets this "machinery" prosper at the expense of our "peaceful goals." This holiday season is becoming the time for an "alert and knowledgeable citizenry" to take action.


[1] 75 percent of Republicans and 76 percent of self-described Tea Party supporters told pollsters they opposed cutting Social Security to balance the deficit. So did more than 80 percent of Americans overall. But unless we do something it's going to happen anyway.

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Host of 'The Breakdown,' Writer, and Senior Fellow, Campaign for America's Future

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