Every mention of the deficit plays into Republican plans to make it an issue, which it really isn’t. As long as people think it is, the right can create enough cover to do the second step. But it’s not just a 2 step; there are others. Republicans never seem to think the deficit is important when they want to cut taxes and increase spending on the military, police, and prison psycho-industrial complex. It only becomes a crucial issue when the issue is spending money to help people.
By increasing the deficit and making it seem important, the right can also justify reducing protections of people and the rest of nature. It’s as if domestic Nazis drastically increased the deficit all through the 1930s so it would be impossible–or seem impossible–for the Roosevelts to fund the war effort with deficit spending, and thus allowed Germany and Japan to conquer most of the world and consolidate and begin to profit from their gains before there was any chance of US opposition. Too little, too late.
Climate catastrophe is similar–we need to fund massive and immediate changes in every aspect and direction of global civilization–clean safe renewable energy, small-scale, low-meat, organic food production, reforesting the world, complete change in emphasis in our political-economic system…
In any case, to avoid climate catastrophe we need to tax the rich into being middle class, because it’s become ever clearer that the rich are the cause of the ecological crisis (and all our other parallel crises). The longer we wait, the more damage we cause to the world.