Thursday, January 10, 2008

Giuliani's Goin' to the Loony Bin, Eh?

Writes Josh Patashnik:

Remember when Rudy Giuliani made the off-the-reservation loony claim that if we were to cut taxes, we would have to fix the resulting hole in the budget by balancing it out with more tax cuts? (Crazy as it sounds, of course, it's just a logical inference from the supply-side argument that lower taxes always mean more revenue.) Everyone assumed Giuliani had misspoken. When he insisted he meant what he said, everyone assumed it was just gratuitous, empty pandering to the economic right. As Avi Zenilman found out, even conservative economists are unwilling to associate themselves with this sort of lunacy.

But now it turns out Giuliani has actually proposed a tax plan that, indeed, seems to balance out tax cuts with more tax cuts.

On the tax issue in question, it's even easier to pick apart than it appears. That's because Giuliani blatantly contradicts himself in the same sentence. By saying that we'd even need something to counterbalance a tax cut, he's admitting it would lose revenue, not gain it. The statement was nonsensical, and that he sticks by it should worry anyone, regardless of one's tax views.

Giuliani was a very intriguing candidate for me as someone who likes moderate-to-liberal social policy, conservative economics, and a generally hard-headed foreign policy. Perhaps no presidential candidate has been a bigger disappointment, as he has turned downright crazy-dogmatic on economics and America's attitude toward the rest of the world.

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