When Barack Obama was running for President, he had the entirely reasonable idea of letting the Bush tax cuts expire for those making over $200k/year. In December 2010, he caved and signed on to an extension of the tax cuts for two more years, even though the government was (and still is) running huge deficits.
Allow me a somewhat fanciful explanation:
Sometime after he was elected but before he was inaugurated, President-elect Obama was briefed on the realities of our world and the Presidency. He was told the truth about terrorists and UFOs, the proper way to order an ICBM launch, and the location of the secret White House Coke machine.
I’ll speculate further that he was also given a briefing rather like the ‘primal forces of nature’ speech from the movie Network about how the US was doomed, and how he couldn’t raise taxes on the rich, or tweak entitlements, or do any of the practical things that one might think of to actually address the problems we face. He was also informed in grisly detail of the consequences for proposing such heresies, or telling the American public the truth about what we are facing.
And so Barack Obama, apostle of Hope and Change, became yet another politician.
But we didn’t get that briefing. We’re outside the corridors of power, watching our country crumble around us, wondering, if not about our next meal, where our meals will come from two years from now.
If we set aside, for a moment, our notions of what is politically correct or feasible, how could we restore productivity and prosperity? Or is it really a lost cause?