Mea Culpa: Rivlin-Domenici Needs Work

I got so excited about some of the smart, obvious solutions included in the Bipartisan Policy Center’s reduce-the-deficit proposal (a.k.a. Rivlin-Domenici) that I didn’t see some of its fatal flaws.

First off, it cuts Social Security, which is exactly the opposite of what we want to do: we want to make both social programs and the tax system more progressive, to counter the radical shift in incomes and wealth over the last thirty years.

This Washington Post graph says all that needs to be said about Social Security benefits:

SS proposals

Social Security doesn’t need to be cut. Simply removing the income cap on payroll taxes would eradicate its tiny (0.6% of GDP) 75-year projected deficit.

Meanwhile the BPC proposal overall makes the tax system only a tiny bit more progressive.

Before we even think about cutting benefits — the true source of trickle down — we need to fix this and start whittling away at this.






2 responses to “Mea Culpa: Rivlin-Domenici Needs Work”

  1. Ted K Avatar

    I still think it’s the best plan. You’re not going to find anything politically feasible that outdoes that one. If you can come up with a plan that’s better Mr. Roth that Republicans would sign, I’d like to see it. I think you’re an intelligent and resourceful guy, but frankly I don’t think you can do it. If for no other reason than the Rivlin plan doesn’t stand a chance in hell as it is.

  2. Asymptosis Avatar

    @Ted K
    “the Rivlin plan doesn’t stand a chance in hell as it is.”