What Obama's Willingness to Deal with the Right Means for Progressive Politics

Remember that time we wanted a deficit-reduction deal that included, oh, I don't know, higher tax rates on those who can afford them? And instead we got, you know, a proposed deal to make cuts to Social Security and Medicaid? I do! Check out this GREAT article by Guy Saperstein that analyzes President Obama's "Grand Bargain" politics... and what we can do about it. Key quotes follow, but be sure to read the article in full so you can be fully prepared to fight.
Obama was willing to make substantial cuts to the crown jewels of liberalism---Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid---and get little in return, in order to get a deficit-reduction deal with Republicans. The details of the proposed deal should be very disturbing to anyone who believes in Democratic core values and protecting the American Dream. In addition to substantial cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and the domestic budget, Obama was willing to reduce top-end tax rates, maintain current tax rates on investment income (the reason millionaires like Mitt Romney pay such low tax rates) and prevent the expiration of the Bush tax cuts in return for increasing tax revenues by $800 billion. ... The progressive vehicle for this pressure may now be in sight with plans by The 99% Spring to train 100,000 people in nonviolent direct action April 9 to 15 to push a progressive agenda about foreclosure relief, student debt, protection of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, job creation, poverty, pollution, wealth inequality and the roll-back of tax cuts for the rich. Let us hope this potentially game-changing force puts its allegiance squarely behind real change, not protecting the president, or any other politician.

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