Robert Reich: It’s tax time. It’s also a time when right-wing Republicans are setting the agenda for massive spending cuts that will hurt most Americans.
Randy Shaw: In a galvanizing April Fools’ Day speech in Madison, Wisconsin, President Barack Obama announced that his Administration would “no longer prioritize military spending over educating our children.”
Robert Reich: Problem is, when you pay ransom once, you’re almost begging to pay it again. And that’s exactly the pickle the Obama administration is finding itself in.
Robert Reich: The President has to reframe the debate around the necessity of average families having enough to spend to get the economy moving again. He needs to remind America this is not 1995 but 2011 — and we’re still in a jobs crisis brought on by the bursting of a giant debt bubble and the implosion of total demand.
Seth Hoy: As many states face budget deficits in 2011, lawmakers might be asking their constituents the same question as those Capitol One commercials, “What’s in your wallet?”
Tracy Emblem: California taxpayers should carefully consider the cost-benefit analysis, because when we cut public funding for these institutions, we cut our state’s economic advantage and future prosperity.
Paul Hogarth: While some may see Jerry Brown’s proposal as a “power grab” by the state that tells local governments how to spend their money, the truth is that it can prevent some devastating budget cuts that have been afflicting localities for years.
Robert Reich: As income and wealth have risen to the top, so has political power. Money is being used to bribe politicians and fill the airwaves with misleading ads that block all of this.
Andrea Nill: The increase in authorized workers would affect individual and corporate income taxes, as well as social insurance taxes. On balance, those changes would increase revenues by $2.3 billion over 10 years.
Randy Shaw: After his decision to freeze federal salaries – not as part of any broader budget and tax deal, but unilaterally – it’s clear that the President is far more politically clueless than previously thought.
Randy Shaw: Brown’s history shows that he likes to shake things up soon after taking office, and he now has the perfect opportunity. The public desperately wants a solution to California’s longstanding budget crisis, and Brown’s political capital is as high as it will ever be following an election where Democrats won every statewide race and maintained all their Congressional seats.
Shamus Cooke: Unless labor and community groups massively mobilize working people in fighting for a pro-worker solution to the deficit crisis, austerity measures — like reducing Social Security and Medicare — will be forced upon us.