Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Half a loaf 

You could dig through my archives and hear of how much I wanted the Bush Administration to stick to its guns and generate support for personal retirement accounts. While Bush holds fast on John Bolton, it appears he is surrendering his leverage for PRAs by allowing a fix-it Social Security bill to come from the Republicans. So now the House Republican leadership will be seen supporting bigger government. If Bush had paid any attention to Tim Pawlenty's current travails, you'd have to expect he'd think twice before doing this.

But at least it appears the estate tax repeal is heading towards a satisfactory ending, if not a complete victory. Senator Jon Kyl has issued a report and is planning a vote in the Senate to make the repeal of the tax permanent. People will tell you we can't afford it with the current deficit, but point out back to them that it's about 1% of the budget, and that meanwhile it's both distorting economic choices and voluntary for the rich to pay (but not, say, for a farmer with a large parcel of land.)

And given this quote, it has a decent chance at passage.
"You ought to be able to leave your land and the bulk of your fortunes to your children and not the government."

That's right, Hillary Clinton, during her election run in 2000.