A reader writes:
I’m a progressive Democrat and I am bewildered, appalled and exasperated by the reaction of most of my political cohort to the tax deal. My reasons are partly strategic, along the lines of your observations that it’s far better for Obama than what could have been expected and gooses the economy leading up to 2012. But my main concern is that all these Democrats (and Bernie Sanders), who profess to care about the middle class and unemployed (and, in my experience, truly do), are willing to throw those folks under the bus for what amounts to a chance to thumb their noses at the rich. Now, I’m no fan of the rich. A 90% tax bracket for billionaires sounds just fine to me. But I’m middle class. I do not want, and really can’t afford, to have my taxes go up, even marginally.
If I were still unemployed (thank God, I’m not anymore, but that’s another story) and facing a cutoff of aid, I would have been panic-stricken as the month began, elated at the news of the deal, and horrified at the actions of the Congressional Dems to sink it. Do they really think the Reeps will OK some new deal to keep the benefits flowing and the middle-class tax cut, if the House torpedoes the current deal? That’s just insane. What’s sure as death and taxes is that if this deal is upended, great hardships will be visited on millions of people this holiday season. And, BTW, you can kiss 2012 goodbye.
The Reps used the unemployed and middle class as pawns, to pry an upper-class tax cut from Obama. But the Dems are not even affording them that measly status, ignoring them altogether. I am almost completely baffled. I know these people and I know they’re intelligent and caring. I just don’t know what’s gotten into them on this issue.