Tom Friedman: Tea Party is Wrong - Americans Want Higher Taxes and More Spending
There are times when one has to think the Manhattan building that is the home of the New York Times doesn't have any windows, doesn't have any television sets, and doesn't have any doors that allow employees to venture out and actually see what's happening in America beyond the walls of 620 Eighth Avenue.
Consider that after the impact the Tea Party has had on our nation's politics the past 20 months, and the historic elections that just took place on November 2, Times columnist Tom Friedman actually thinks Americans aren't interested in reducing the federal deficit but are instead yearning for higher taxes and greater government spending:
I believe most Americans don’t want a plan for deficit reduction. The Tea Party’s vision is narrow and uninspired. Americans want a plan to make America great again, and at some level they know that such a plan will require a hybrid politics — one that blends elements of both party’s instincts. And they will follow a president — they would even pay more taxes and give up more services — if they think he really has a plan to make America great again, not just bring him victory in 2012 by 50.1 percent.
The Tea Party's vision is uninspired? Friedman ought to get out of 620 Eighth Avenue and talk to some Democrats that'll be leaving Washington, D.C., when the new Congress gets sworn in next year.
What Americans on November 2 clearly said was uninspired are the tired and worn out policies of Obama, Pelosi, and Reid that are mortgaging the future of this nation on the backs of generations not yet having a say in how their money is being spent.
But missing this was just the beginning of Friedman's myopia for he then rattled off what he considers solutions:
We need to raise gasoline and carbon taxes to discourage their use and drive the creation of a new clean energy industry, while we cut payroll and corporate taxes to encourage employment and domestic investment. We need to cut Medicare and Social Security entitlements at the same time as we make new investments in infrastructure, schools and government-financed research programs that will spawn the next Google and Intel.
In sum, Americans need to pay more of their hard-earned dollars to a government that has shown itself to be a reckless spender while expecting less in return.
Is that really the message of the last elections? Where is this 620 Eighth Avenue, and what is the color of the sky there?
Wherever it is, it is a land where all the problems of the world are easily attributed to the usual suspects:
Yes, President Obama inherited a huge mess from the reckless Bush team. The Onion was not far off in its satirical headline at inauguration time: “Black Man Given Nation’s Worst Job.” Obama deserves much more credit than he has received for stabilizing the economy and reviving the auto industry.
But the reason he hasn’t gotten it is not just because those nasty Republicans say all those nasty things about him.
Ah, George W. Bush and those nasty Republicans. I guess that's all one can see from 620 Eighth Avenue.