The companies working with the Campaign To Fix The Debt have already received trillions of dollars in subsidies, bailouts and federal war contracts, as well as specialized tax breaks and loopholes that virtually eliminate the companies’ tax bills.
Ed Lorenzen, an adviser to the Bowles’ group, said: “The Fix the Debt campaign is an effort to bring everybody together. We’re realistic. They’re not necessarily going to enact the final solution and an entire legislative package by the end of the year.”
“But we’re hoping and pushing to … adopt at least the framework of a deal that would allow Congress to finish the work,” he added.
During the past few days, chiefs executives belonging to the so-called CEO Fiscal Leadership Council -have turned to a means of mass media, claiming the only way to cut the deficit is to severely scale back social safety-net programs which would cause troubles to the poor and the elderly.
The CEO council offers two major ways which are believed to produce “at least $4 trillion of deficit reduction.”
The first is to “replace mindless, abrupt deficit reduction with thoughtful changes that reform the tax code and cut low-priority spending.”
The second is to “keep debt under control over the long-term by focusing on the long-term growth of entitlement programs.”
CEOs are expected to present a Fix-The-Debt PowerPoint presentation to their “employee town hall [meetings and] company meetings.”
As The Huffington Post reports, to further help get the word out, the campaign borrowed a page from the CEOs this fall who urged their employees to vote for Mitt Romney, or face job cuts. This time, the CFD has created two templates for bosses to use at their companies.
During the past few days, in order to make their case to the millions of American people who don’t work for them, chief executives took part in some TV programs to convince the rest of the country that slashing the social safety net is the only way to reduce the deficit.
In a recent interview, Goldman Sachs the head and CEO Lloyd Blankfein said Social Security “wasn’t devised to be a system that supported you for a 30 year retirement after a 25-year career.”
According to Sachs, the key to cutting Social Security was simply a matter of teaching people to expect less.
“You’re going to have to do something, undoubtedly, to lower people’s expectations of what they’re going to get,” Blankfein told reporters, “the entitlements, and what people think they’re going to get, because you’re not going to get it.”
Following Blankfein’s example on Monday, Cote, the Honeywell Chief Executive,sat down with the same CBS network on Tuesday, and said essentially the same thing that Blankfein did.
“Our debt is higher as a percent of GDP today than it has been at any time in our history since the Revolutionary War, with the exception of the end of World War II, when we had a very good reason to be doing that. So we’ve got to do something,” he admitted.
Meanwhile, many Republicans have refused to raise taxes. Thus, U.S. Rep.-elect Robert Pittenger, a Charlotte Republican, explained:
“We must reduce the excessive spending which has been the culprit in this crisis and restructure entitlement programs. We should eliminate corporate welfare and other loopholes carved out by the thousands of lawyers in Washington in behalf of special interests.”
The Republican went on, adding “a fairer and flatter and simpler tax code,” as opposed to tax hikes, would bring in enough revenue if combined with spending cuts, writes Kansas City Star.