The Post and The Times View Kerry's Economic Speech In Expected Ways
If you want to see a good example of how beholden the Washington Post editorial page is to George W. Bush, look no further than how the nation’s two leading newspapers covered John Kerry’s major economic address today. While Kerry did exactly what the White House said he wouldn’t do, which is lay out specifics about how he would meet his campaign promises while moving the budget back from the brink of Bush-induced fiscal crisis, the New York Times and the Washington Post took different tones.
The Post’s editors, in keeping with their hear no evil, see no evil approach towards Bush, congratulated Kerry for talking about his plans, and then bashed him for his plans not adding up. I’m sure if I go back to when Bush’s budget was released I can find a similar bashing from the Post’s editors about how Bush’s budget claims don’t add up either. Yeah right.
The Times on the other hand, while making the same critique about Kerry’s plan, gave him a thumbs-up for wanting to return the country to Bill Clinton economics, and said it was good to see that he was switching from primary-season mode to that of someone ready to govern.
Perhaps the Post is mad because Kerry pledged to go after corporate welfare, especially in light of a report today from the GAO that shows the corporate tax burden has shrunk to its lowest levels since the days when Dwight Eisenhower warned of the military-industrial complex.
The GAO report showed that 61% of U.S. corporations paid no federal income taxes from 1996 through 2000, a period of rapid economic growth and rising corporate profits.
It goes without saying that if all corporations paid taxes instead of taking advantage of loopholes and arbitraging the tax system, then the marginal tax rate on all corporations could be reduced while helping to close the deficit. And since many of these same corporations were quick to blast Kerry’s corporate tax cut plan last week by saying that tax rates are not major determinants in their decision about where to locate jobs, they can’t exactly now say that closing the loopholes and ensuring that all corporations pay their share will adversely affect their job and production decisions, can they?