Barron's piece on tobacco

Max Sawicky sawicky at
Mon Feb 22 22:40:57 PST 1999

> Actually, Max, my belief was that caving on immunity
> and using tobacco money to get health care for kids 'n'
> such would be a *winning* strategy for the Dems, rather
> than tax cuts for the rich. But lemme tell ya, it's

I've got nothing against tobacco money, by and large, if it goes to worthy purposes. The source is regressive but the destination could make up for that, broadly speaking. It does seem to be a self-limiting strategy, since tobacco money is limited. Using it could be interpreted as saying the income tax should not be any higher.

It should be remembered that Medicaid is the domestic program -- for the poor, no less -- that has expanded the most since 1980, under the most adverse circumstances. Supporting it has been good politics, so using its acceptability to push on general taxation, rather than excises, has its good points too.

> not *easy* getting a piece like this through Barron's.
> Eight drafts. OTOH, it is not a given that "tax cuts"
> is a wining strategy for the Repubs. It just happens
> to be their strategy. -gn

It hasn't been doing too well for them lately, thanks to their own incessant harping on public debt. It went around and then came around.


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