Obama, GOP pushing U.S. in wrong direction in “Fiscal Cliff”

December 19, 2012 in Social & Economic Justice

From Jill Stein & Cheri Honkala, the Green Party’s 2012 Presidential ticket:

Ending the Great Recession, not the deficit, is nation’s top priority

2012 Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein said today that the so-called Fiscal Cliff Talks “need to focus on putting Americans back to work while creating a sustainable economy,” and that the U.S. can do that and end the deficit by:

  • Restoring progressive taxes on wealthy Americans and corporations, comparable to rates in the Eisenhower and Nixon eras.
  • Cutting the waste and excess in the military budget.
  • Curtailing rising health care costs by transitioning to a Medicare for All insurance system.
  • Investing in a “Green New Deal” that would create the foundation for sustainable prosperity for the 21st Century.

Stein criticized Obama’s latest proposals as, “throwing ordinary Americans under the bus while continuing to reward the economic elite.” These proposals cut the cost of living adjustments for Social Security, seek $400 billion in unspecified cuts to Medicare and other health care programs, extend the Bush tax cuts for households making as much as $400,000, and fast track changes to the corporate tax code.”

“The bipartisan policies of recent decades made the rich a lot richer, pushed millions into poverty and insecurity, and created a 16 trillion dollar national debt. Now both establishment parties are using the national debt as a concocted excuse to cut critical services including Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, unemployment insurance and food stamps.  While their proposals differ around the margins, both Democrats and Republicans are promoting austerity budgets that are highly likely to deepen and extend the Great Recession. We need a prosperity budget not an austerity budget. By redirecting trillions of dollars being wasted on the bloated military, Wall Street bail outs, health insurance profiteering, and tax breaks for the wealthy, we have more than enough money to fund our real urgent needs – job creation, infrastructure investments, reducing mortgage and student debt, health care as a human right, and aggressive action against climate change,” said Dr. Stein.

Cheri Honkala, the Green’s 2012 vice-presidential candidate, added “Obama’s token tax hikes of a few percent on high incomes won’t raise significant revenue and are being used as a phony progressive cover to sell the public on Wall Street’s program of cutting social insurance and public services so the super-rich won’t have to pay their taxes. The Fix the Debt crowd are willing to use their small hit on personal income taxes in order to get big cuts on their corporate tax rates, including a ‘territorial tax system’ that enables them to repatriate profits from abroad at no or very low tax rates.”

The proposal made by Jill Stein is consistent with a deficit plan that came from the Occupy Movement, The 99%’s Deficit Proposal: How to create jobs, reduce the wealth divide and control spending. “When people outside of the bipartisan consensus look at the problems the country faces, they see real and immediate solutions. It’s the establishment politicians, corrupted by billions in campaign contributions, that don’t get it.”

Stein went on, “Case in point – the military budget, which consumes more than half of  discretionary dollars, can be cut significantly by replacing private contractors, closing many of the more than 1,100 foreign military bases, and eliminating massive waste, including weapons systems that even the Pentagon says it does not need.

“The solution to the increasing costs of health care for programs like Medicare and Medicaid is not to raise Medicare age limits or reduce health benefits but to bring all Americans into an improved Medicare for All. Medicare for all would eliminate the$570 billion wasted annually on health insurance companies and control rising health care costs,” added Stein.

According to Stein, an array of progressive tax proposals should be implemented including: taxing capital gains at the same rates as wages, ending off-shore tax havens, and enacting a  ½% financial transaction tax that could raise over $800 billion in a decade.

Stein also called for a carbon tax on fossil fuel companies to pay for hundreds of billions of dollars every year in military expenditures, health injuries and environmental damage. Billions could also be saved enacting a windfall profits tax and ending tax subsidies for fossil fuels and nukes.

“We reject the austerity policies being foisted on us by both parties, which will hurt everyone, especially working people and the poor. It’s time to stand up for real solutions that will fix the deficit by creating an economy that works for everyday people,” added Honkala.

7 responses to Obama, GOP pushing U.S. in wrong direction in “Fiscal Cliff”

  1. I often wonder why the Green Party platform hasn’t gained more traction. My only concern with it is government management of this New Deal program. If it could be done honestly & efficiently, it could restore & advance our infrastructure to great advantage. If poorly managed & riddled with corruption, it would set back perception of government for generations. Do we have enough smart, honest managers to pull it off?

  2. In the confines of reducing the federal budget and letting tax cuts for rich people to expire, which they are supposed to expire, the priorities become what they have been. The Green Party’s platform speaks truth to power so the conversation about improving the economy for more people would include cutting an overreaching military budget and expecting progressive taxation from companies. The Green New Deal is a good program.

  3. You may find some hints or ideas in “Strategic goals with health care, minimum wages and taxation of income” on allvoices.com
    http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/13264734-strategic-goals-with-health-care-minimum-wages-and-taxation-of-income

  4. Rich know very well that only current status quo will guarantee ‘em to stay in place. Freemarket economy with open market, they are scared from competition as devil is scared from cross. Rise minimum wages and let world wide businesses enter free US market will make Park Avenue R.I.P. Just look at Land Rover. Under corrupted Ford management it went bancrupt. Ratan Tata claimed 1.5 bilion dolars profit. Magic of Wall Street is that they keep control on US teritory as if is they backyard and they have dogs and so on to watch. Except break labor cost. Ilegeal imigrants are welcomed. If one want to find job in Switzerland must show proof of acomodation. They do not allow 20 people live in 2 bedroom apartment and then work for minimum wage. Fire department controls this in Swiss

  5. If only the corporate media would report this instead of the so-called “grand compromise”

  6. The Green Party is the clearest option to lead this nation away from destruction, and yet, the corporate media chooses to report on Kim Kardashian’s new child. Pathetic. There is a clear cut plan to reduce the deficit from Occupy Wall Street, but the corporate media chooses to report on the so-called “Grand Compromise” that is being put through the Senate. Austerity won’t work, look what’s happening in Greece, Spain, and Italy. I really think that if we were more publicized, we could make a real difference. So, let’s get working. We can still save the nation yet; we’re not completely out of time.

  7. Dr. Jill Stein, Green Party, would make an excellent Green Party candidate for U.S. Senate in the coming special election for U.S. Senate in Mass…

    Assuming John Kerry is confirmed as Secretary of State.

    and how about the success the 2002 Green Party candidate for state legislature, and new Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema!