People are confused

Here’s a bit of Republican induced confusion:

So we asked simply: Were the United States to “go over the fiscal  cliff,” what do you expect would happen to the National Deficit?

At least according to the CBO and most economists, the correct answer is that  “It will decrease.”  Going over the Fiscal Cliff would, according  a Congressional Budget Office study, result in a reduction in the National  Deficit of $607 billion between fiscal years 2012 and 2013.

However that was not the most popular answer. Per the survey, 47.4% of  respondents said that the deficit would INCREASE if we went over the Fiscal  Cliff. Only 12.6% think it will decrease.

You see, something like the fiscal cliff was the Republican plan called the Ryan budget except with more cuts and no new tax revenues and it’s operative even when there are disasters:

Still, any disaster aid package may well need to satisfy the concerns of conservative lawmakers, who have indicated an unwillingness to approve additional disaster spending without cuts that would offset the costs — and avoid adding to the deficit.

and whatever they say they want austerity:

But in the debt ceiling fight, the tables might turn. Many conservative Republicans say they are willing to let the nation default if Congress refuses to cut spending. If the tax rate fight is already resolved by the time the debt limit increase is needed, Democrats will find themselves without the leverage they now have with the expiration of the lower tax rates a certainty unless Congress acts affirmatively.

The point is that Republican’s fiscal cliff is made by cutting taxes and even bigger spending cuts than are anticipated now–after all they believe that austerity works. Well, in a way. The goal of Republicans has long been to cut taxes and cut all spending they don’t like–so huge spending on defense is good while spending on the poor is bad. They don’t really care about the deficit. But Republicans have pretended to want to cut the defiict for so long that now that they are publicly worried about the fiscal cliff, people figure it must mean it will increase the deficit.

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