Much of the GOP counter-proposal seems to have been fashioned for political effect — including a prohibition on millionaires and billionaires receiving food stamps (now known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). We don't know what budget documents Republicans have been t studying, but when last we looked, Warren Buffett's SNAP card wasn't one of the bigger drivers of the nation's deficit.
To be charitable, it's good that Republicans have at least shown some interest in extending the payroll tax break. It's the kind of policy that they've endorsed in the past, but Mr. Obama's interest in it (as part of his jobs bill) initially cooled theirs.
Still, what's maddening about their counter-proposal is not simply that Republicans would hold the well-being of millionaires over all others but that they would do so under the guise that they are looking out for "job creators," as if the rich were chiefly responsible for growing the economy.
Here's a news flash: The wealthy don't drive the economy. Job creation depends on both investment and consumption. The payroll tax can stimulate both sides of that equation, but keeping down taxes for the rich has little bearing on either. If it did, the country would be in economic pig-heaven, as effective tax rates on the highest earners among us haven't been lower in 30 years.