Friday, July 24, 2009

Peter Orszag: Executioner?

WSJ has a front page profile on White House budget director Peter Orszag.

Most of the article explains the bizarre game Orszag plays to find ways to increase taxes:

....he went straight to the Senate Finance Committee, where he spent three hours with committee aides brainstorming about how to pay for the trillion-dollar legislation. At one point, they flipped through the tax code, looking for ideas.
Note to Orszag, you don't tax products or income streams, you tax people. Yeah, it might be worse for one sector, versus another, but at the end of the day, it doesn't matter if you tax their milk or their coffee, you are still taxing people.

It is scary that Orszag takes seriously that he has to "find" ways to tax the public by flipping through the tax code. You either tax people or you don't. Oszag is a taxer.

WSJ also writes that Orszag has:

...sent a letter to Capitol Hill detailing a proposal he had been more quietly pitching for weeks -- creating a new agency with power to cut spending and implement changes in Medicare, the giant health program for the elderly. He also attached proposed legislative language. It was the most specific that the White House, which has tried to articulate principles and leave details to lawmakers, has been on any aspect of the legislation.
I am no fan of Medicare, but just how did Orszag reach the conclusion that he is going to decide how much is spent on Medicare, damn the ill?

We are quickly moving into the land of medical killing fields, and Orszag wants to be the executioner.

Hayek was right, the worst do get to the top.

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