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Juke or Jook: fake, (football) a deceptive move made by a football player.  Synonyms: fraud, imposter, pseudo, fake, faker, pretender,  role player, shammer, sham.

How long will it take for Missourians to wake up to the fact that we’ve sent a pack of jukes to D.C. and to Jefferson City to take care of our financial welfare. You know what jukes are, right? Jukes point left and run right, carrying our ball right along with them, leaving us with nothing and no prospects for anything. Right now there’s lots of jukin’ going on.

The primetime juking is happening in Washington where the chawbacon economists that have hit the capital have been pointing left and screaming “I see a deficit,” while running right and trying to make sure that government can no longer do any of the things we want it to do. This week GOP House members announced their support for cuts in spending for infrastructure, national parks, scientific research, food assistance to low income women and children, community health centers, etc. There’s lots more pain in the their plans than I have space to list (see list of proposed cuts here), but the kicker is – get this – for all the suffering and lost opportunities these cuts represent, they won’t do diddly about the deficit. As Think Progress puts it:

In the grand scheme of deficit reduction, these cuts will do absolutely nothing, but they will have extremely detrimental effects for those who depend upon the targeted programs. This shows the folly of the GOP’s approach to budgeting, which leaves huge parts of the federal budget immune to cuts (like the Pentagon), while taking an axe to non-defense discretionary spending. These cuts outlined above total about $1 billion, while simply retiring (and not replacing) one carrier battle group and its aircraft wing would save $1.5 billion.

So, our GOPers in the house are planning to take a wrecking ball to vital government programs that have nothing to do with the problems they cited when they persuaded us to give them the wrecking tools. They’re doing this even though, when polled, Americans don’t support the proposed cuts and they will cost thousands of jobs. But that doesn’t bother our jukes; pols like, for instance, Missouri’s Billy Long (R-7) are sure they’ve done something big. According to the Turner Report, ol’ Billy  is patting himself on the back and fatuously proclaiming, “we got ‘er done.”  

Back home in Missouri, the local jukes are also hard at it. Remember how they whined about jobs and job creation before the election? And what are they doing to create jobs? Attacking unions, undercutting workers, doing their best to insure that if, by some miracle, any jobs are created, they’ll be the sort that nobody but the most desperate will take. These ideologically driven strategies are supposed to create a “business-friendly” climate, but as the St. Louis Post-Dispatch observed:

Business-friendly is one thing. Business-promiscuous is quite another. Before the state goes past second base with these suitors, it would be wise to ask why – given all the pro-business initiatives of past years – the economy is still in a funk. Businesses were given tax breaks, tax credits, tax incentives, low corporate taxes and tort reform. So where are the jobs? Or did they just pocket the savings?

Of course not all jukes are created equal. And by that I mean competent; I also mean our new State Auditor, Thomas Schweich. When faced with the task of analyzing the financial impact of the proposed mega sales tax/income tax swap that is being engineered by political sugar daddy Rex Sinquefield, Schweich ended up looking like the proverbial deer caught in the headlights.

The facts, after all, aren’t that favorable to the unfair tax, so poor little Schweich, fearing to offend King Rex from whom all favors flow, claimed that the job just couldn’t be done. Nope. No way.  No mathematical skills, models, or reasoned estimates could be employed  – although use of those tools is an everyday thing for financial types – like auditors – who are able to walk and chew gum at the same time. The upshot: Schweich looks like a fool;  he pointed left, but just hasn’t got what it takes to run the ball to the right.

The unFair tax proponents are themselves juking in a number of directions. One of the most interesting is the proposal to cap the sales tax at 7%. As numerous analysts have shown, such a low cap is absurd if one expects the swap-out to be revenue neutral. And, of course, those of us who raise this point are missing the whole jukin’ game. These daddies don’t have the slightest interest in revenue neutral – they want to force cuts, the more the better. Here, one should note that in some dialects being juked has another connotation – as in baby, you’ve been screwed.

GOP juke economics are ultimately an exercise in ideological strategy. If there is less money, there will necessarily be less government spending on those vital programs that so disturb the John Galt roleplayers and excite the wrath of Tea Partying grannies  whose bile rises at the thought of all those welfare queens living high on the taxpayer dollar. When the consequences fall on all of us, though,  Missourians who voted GOP will have nobody to blame but themselves.