Blog No. 170. The Budget Act, the Trump Budget and the Road to Fiscal Ruin

Writing, and no doubt reading, about budgets is not as much fun as writing about the pronouncements of the Tweeter in Chief and various misadventures of the Trump White House. But the budget is an important matter, so even a further look at the peculiar saga of Trump and the Russians will be temporarily deferred,[…]

Blog No. 165 The Republican Tax Bill: The Sausage Examined

The passage of the Republican tax bill was celebrated at the White House with a gaggle of Republican legislators showering lavish praise and gratitude on their Dear Leader. Peggy Noonan aptly described the scene: Wednesday afternoon’s big White House rally celebrating its passage was embarrassing. All these grown men and women slathering personal, obsequious, over-the-top[…]

Blog No 163. The Oozlum’s Tax Bill

Regular readers will recall that from time to time RINOcracy.com has referred to the Freedom Caucus in the House of Representatives, and other self-styled “conservatives” on Capitol Hill, as Oozlums. For the benefit of new readers, the term is a reference to the mythical bird that flies in ever decreasing concentric circles until it disappears[…]

Special Bulletin. The Republican Tax Bill: An Interim Report From the Sausage Factory

RINOcracy.com will defer comment on the specific ingredients of the sausages being produced by Republicans in the House in the Senate. In the meantime, and for an overall perspective, we are publishing below the analysis by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB) of the bill released by the Senate. Senate Tax Plan is[…]

Blog No. 154. A Salute to Harvey

For a week, the eyes of all Americans, from politicians in Washington to private citizens in every state in the nation, have been focused on television sets watching the disaster of Harvey unfold. The scale of the devastation pushed other stories, if not out of sight, at least from center stage. For the moment, we[…]

Welcome to RINOcracy 2.0

RINOcracy.com was founded in May, 2013 as a voice within the Republican Party, albeit a voice dissenting from party orthodoxy on some significant issues. The 2013 “Welcome to RINOcracy,” which appears below, explained the origin of the name, some of my political background and offered brief thoughts on several issues. Now, however, things have changed.[…]

An Afternote to Blog 115: Donald Trump’s Tax Returns

In Blog No. 115 we suggested that, even if Donald Trump persisted in his refusal to disclose his tax returns, he should be pressed to disclose key information from the returns. An excellent column in Friday’s New York Times by James Stewart makes just that point: “Keep the Returns, Trump; Just Give Us a Few Figures.” As Stewart put it:

So just give us this: your adjusted gross income and actual federal taxes paid for the last five years, certified by your accountants. That’s a total of 10 numbers, which would fit on a single page.

Those are numbers any taxpayer can understand. They wouldn’t tell the I.R.S. anything it doesn’t already know.

And while they wouldn’t answer many of the questions that have swirled around your finances, they would lay to rest once and for all the most basic question: How much, if anything, do you pay in federal taxes?

[…]

Blog No. 28. RINO Heroes of the Month: Boehner and McConnell (and the Anti-Hero, Ted Cruz).

Blog 28 picRINOcracy.com has not always been an unalloyed admirer of Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Nevertheless, credit must be given where credit is due, although being named a RINO Hero is probably an honor that neither would relish. In any case, both gentlemen deserve credit for acting with skill and courage to avoid a “crisis” over the increase in the debt ceiling.  As RINOcracy.com had previously noted, the increase in the debt ceiling was inevitable, but it was not at all clear that it would be accomplished with a minimum of embarrassment to Congressional Republicans. Moreover, as events unfolded, the seemingly irrepressible Ted Cruz did his best to create that embarrassment. […]

Special Bulletin. The Debt Ceiling: Another Tea Party Tantrum

It is an overused cliché to say that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result. Yet how better to describe the actions of the House Republicans in insisting that they must “get something” in order to vote for an increase in the debt ceiling? It is a demand that has the intellectual gravitas of a child refusing to eat her spinach unless she is given a cookie.spinach […]

Special Bulletin. The Patty and Paul Show Update: Now Let’s Support the Deal.

The budget agreement reached between Senator Murray and Rep. Ryan meets the most important precept of medical ethics: Primum non nocere (First, do no harm). The agreement, if approved by the House and Senate, will avoid the harm to the country that would follow from another government shutdown. It will also avoid the harm to the Republican Party from yet another demonstration of inability to function in a divided government.  […]