Tuesday, May 10, 2011

UNITED STATES - Obama returns to the progressive topics

The man America elected president is back. For months, Obama knew that we had originally disappeared behind a compromise doubtful and vague principles. But Wednesday, April 13, he used his budget speech to distance vis-à-vis the Republicans, who claim generous tax breaks for the rich while neglecting the poor, the elderly and the unemployed.

He gave a very different vision of America, that of a country that holds promises for the weak and the powerful demands sacrifice. The deficit reduction plan he presented is certainly not always live up to this vision and he should focus less on reducing costs at the expense of higher taxes.

But at least it provides a reasonable basis to discuss the issue and is much better than the major projects that are opposed. This reflects the fact that this plan is based on themes related to the generosity and responsibility. Because everyone is entitled to "a modicum of security and dignity," said Obama during his speech, the nation should contribute to public health programs such as Medicare, Medicaid and unemployment benefits.

He added that "without these commitments, [the U.S.] would not be a great country." But Republicans in the House of Representatives and many of their presidential candidates seek to derail this promise, he said, which would engage themselves senior citizens and give up 50 million Americans who do not have coverage.

They say no to sending students to university, investment in research, while approving a rebate of 1,000 billion dollars in tax breaks for the rich. "It's not fair. And it will not happen while I'm at the presidency," Obama said forcefully. Surprising, of course, that Barack Obama reaffirms its most unifying principles as he enters his campaign for reelection in 2012.

But the timing could not have been better. The President gave a few days ago the impression to swallow the words of hypocrites Republicans on deficit reduction when greeting a last-minute deal too drastic on the 2011 budget, barely a week after the Republicans unveiled their project [for 2012], which would destroy decades of progress in social reforms completely social programs.

Barack Obama said he "refuse [s] to extend" tax cuts for the wealthy by Bush when they are due to end in late 2012 [after agreeing in December 2010, to extend these tax breaks until 2012]. That would save some 700 billion dollars over ten years, but the president has also proposed 1 000 billion in additional savings that would be generated by limiting tax deductions on actual costs awarded to the 2% richest and removing various niches Tax unspecified for now.

However, his plan relies on a two-thirds reduction of expenditure and to third on tax increases when he should have been 50-50 and thus broaden the spectrum of sacrifices. Besides $ 770 billion of spending cuts beyond national security spending planned over twelve years (more than prudence so requires), the president also wants 360 billion savings in mandatory programs like farm subsidies insurance or retirement.

However, if Obama intends to remain faithful to the ideals displayed in his speech, budget cuts in other programs of this type, such as food stamps and aid to working poor, should not be on the agenda. Negotiations with intractable Republican opposition will no doubt harden, but it's a relief to see Barack Obama again defend the values that led to the White House.

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