So we have come to this: President Obama is now treating not raising taxes as though it were the same as providing a tax cut. Gene Sperling, his top economic adviser, even dared to refer to Obama’s proposal yesterday of a partial one-year extension of the Bush rates as a “tax break.”
Up is down. 2+2 = 5. Leave a tax rate intact and it’s the same as cutting taxes. No wonder the White House believed not buying a health-care policy should be considered an economic activity to be taxed and penalized.
Action, inaction; what’s the difference? In one case, you’re being a bad citizen and deserve to get slammed. In the other, you’re being a wonderful president and deserve to get re-elected.People often describe such logic as Orwellian, but in truth, you have to go back to the comedienne Gracie Allen for such a priceless example of corkscrew thinking.
But of course logic has nothing to do with it, and whatever Obama is, he isn’t dumb. This is a piece of election-year gamesmanship — and as such, it’s a decent gambit. The president can claim, as he did yesterday, to be a great friend to the middle class that has taken such a beating during his presidency.