Certainly less than perfect, but not as bad as it could have been (or was rumored to be).
And if you're on unemployment, I would imagine this looks pretty good.
Frankly, I was pretty ambivalent about things. Krugman wrote this morning (I believe, correctly) that we can't afford the Bush tax cuts if they're extended permanently, and that keeping them in place will bankrupt the government (probably as part of a deliberate effort to kill major government programs like Social Security). At the same time, he acknowledged that now is a bad time to increase taxes. So, it seems to me that a temporary extension isn't a bad choice. Combined with a temporary reduction in payroll taxes and an extension of unemployment insurance, you're talking some economic stimulus.
Yes, we'll be fighting this fight all over again in two years. In the meantime, the economy should continue to improve, the job situation will hopefully do likewise, and it will be harder to argue in favor of continuing the tax cuts.
What's more, with the GOP fighting for tax cuts now, it's hard to argue that we need to deal with the deficit as an urgent matter, which should make spending cuts tougher to sell.
Does that mean I have great faith that the Democrats will be able to kill the tax cuts in two years? Nope. I agree that the current crop of Dems are not bare-knuckle types. On the other hand, the current crop of GOP'ers are, quite simply, batshit insane and more concerned about hurting Obama and Democrats than with the good of the country.
So, we'll see what will happen. But in my opinion, the current deal, in and of itself, is not a terrible thing.Click here for reuse options!
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