To Fix Social Security, Lower Taxes, Yanks Say

Latest poll finds majority believes a strong economy is the best way to deal with entitlements.

AP/Susan Walsh, file
President Biden in the East Room of the White House, March 23, 2023. We need leadership that will be a guardian for economic growth and prosperity, our columnist writes. AP/Susan Walsh, file

Last week we talked about an especially pessimistic poll conducted by the University of Chicago and sponsored by the WSJ, which ran an article under the headline, “Most Americans doubt their children will be better off.” I remarked that “big time pessimism is out there and Joe Biden owns it because inflation is the cruelest tax of all.”

Inflation haunts middle- and lower-income working people. It has driven up interest rates on credit cards, home mortgages, car loans, etc. Inflation is rising faster than wages, and government spending and bank bailouts have gotten under the skin of Americans.

Speaking of bank bailouts, we’ll be talking about the failed bank supervision by the San Francisco Fed president, Mary Daly, who was featured in a long WSJ editorial as someone who focused more on the progressive priorities of climate change and equity than mundane things like rising interest rates, bond duration, and loan quality.

To some extent, though, I don’t want to confuse this with yet another poll conducted by the University of Chicago and also sponsored by the Wall Street Journal that we will talk about with a former Reagan education secretary, Bill Bennett. It’s a front page story in the Journal that says “patriotism, religious faith, work effort and other traditional values are plunging in Joe Biden’s America while it would appear that victimization and government entitlements are on the rise.”

In that sense, Ms. Daly, by ignoring the traditional values of a bank examiner with big consequences, seems to be part of a national trend. I hate to think about the rest of the population if victims are suddenly more important than rooting for underdogs. If stagnation is more important than growth.

Yet another poll conducted by Scott Rasmussen is more hopeful.

This one shows that a majority of Americans believe higher taxes and more regulation weakened Social Security and Medicare, and that a strong economy would be the best way to deal with those big entitlements.

President Biden is apparently starting an “Investing in America” tour, and I doubt very much if he is going to agree with the 63 percent who believe lower taxes and regulations will actually strengthen Social Security.

Don’t forget Mr. Biden”s latest budget has big tax hikes for the so-called rich in order to finance Social Security and Medicare. Exactly the reverse of the polling data.

Ironically, the left-of-center Brookings tax policy center just came out with a report that showed 111 million taxpayers making less than $400,000 a year will see tax increases in 2024 — exactly the reverse of Mr. Biden’s promise.

Then, there’s another beauty: Goldman Sachs over the weekend came out with a report showing that the misnamed “Inflation Reduction Act” will actually cost more than three times the government estimates because of investment tax credits for green climate change projects. That bill is going to cost $1.2 trillion, thereby blowing up Mr. Biden’s phony debt reduction.

Somehow or other, I still blame a Biden administration in decline. I don’t really want to say America is in decline, but I do fret and I will say for the umpteenth time: We need leadership that will be a guardian for economic growth and prosperity, and then good old-fashioned values will soon return to a more confident America.

From Mr. Kudlow’s broadcast on Fox Business News.


The New York Sun

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