Josh Marshall’s Question Regarding Mitt Romney

Josh asks:

When I hear Mitt Romney talk he sounds like a complete phony. Analyzing his record I think there’s a very strong case that he’s a serial flipflopper and a real opportunist. But that’s not what I’m talking about. His manner and voice and what he says … everything sounds extraordinarily canned and contrived.

He is a flip-flopper and his words are canned and contrived. Let’s take his promise to balance the budget without a tax increase aka a redo of that 1988 “Read My Lips, No New Taxes”. His ad on this says he’ll cut $300 billion out of government spending. Wow! But that is $300 billion over a decade or a mere $30 billion per year. Sorry Mitt – but the General Fund deficit is well in excess of $500 billion a year.

But this is not what ticks me off. What ticks me off is he does not say where he’d cut spending. Certainly not in the defense department as he wants more defense spending. So what does he say? Nondefense discretionary spending should grow at the rate of inflation minus 1%. A formula. Never mind this represents a real per capita reduction equal to about 2% per year. But no individual will lose any benefits from this as it’s just some magic formula.

Sort of reminds me of reading some of the worst nonsense from the most bizarre wingnuts out there. And this guy wants to be our President? He can’t bother to identify a single government program that he wants to cut or eliminate? Just some bizarre formula with no meaning.

I hope Greg Mankiw is reading this since Greg is supposed to be his economic advisor. We know Greg is a small government conservative. Greg – where would President Romney cut spending? Isn’t it his responsibility to be more honest with the voters? Or are we going to have a repeat of Bush41 – promise not to raise taxes to win the election and then flip-flop on that promise.