I like to write good things to write about President Obama. It helps me to convince myself that I am a fair-minded person, and also convince my friends, most of whom are supporters of the President.
But usually when I do, it turns out there is a catch. I feel as if I were Charlie Brown in the comic strip once again trusting Lucy to hold the football so he can kick it.
I wrote a post the other day praising the President for budget proposals, which contained some modest tax increases on the upper income brackets and some modest benefits from working people.
But now I realize I missed important parts—more spending for the military, tax reductions for the rich and cuts to Medicare.
Andre Demon, writing for the World Socialist Web Site, pointed out:
Obama’s budget proposal would increase Pentagon spending by 7 percent, adding an additional $38 billion to bring the total defense budget to $534 billion.
Obama is separately proposing $51 billion in additional funding for the wars in Iraq and Syria, including money to back the so-called “moderate” opposition in Syria, as well for as the ongoing US troop presence in Afghanistan.
The proposal would also allow US corporations to repatriate past profits generated overseas at a tax rate of only 14 percent. Foreign profits would be taxed at 19 percent in the future.
Currently, US corporations pay a rate of 35 percent on foreign profits, which many corporations avoid by keeping their foreign earnings abroad.
These tax cuts are accompanied by $400 billion in cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and the Department of Health and Human Services.
The budget proposes to raise $66 billion over ten years by charging higher Medicare premiums to upper-income patients, a move that would undermine Medicare’s status as a universal entitlement and open the door to means testing and the transformation of the government health insurance program for seniors into a poverty program.
The plan would cut another “$116 billion in Medicare payments to drug companies for medicines prescribed for low-income patients,” according to the New York Times.
It would also slash $100 billion for the treatment of Medicare patients following their discharge from the hospital, affecting primarily the elderly.