Tag Archives: Tax Cuts

If Congress Left For 536 Days (Like Belgium), It Could Almost Eliminate The Deficit

This is probably the best we could hope for…

The Republicans are going to block anything positive….

But, at least the GOP couldn’t do any more damage….

From ThinkProgress.org:


While Republicans and Democrats continue to fight over how to reduce America’s debt and deficits — moving from near-government shutdowns to failed super committees and opposition to both spending cuts and tax increases — the government of Belgium may have inadvertently provided Congress with an example of how to fix the problem: do absolutely nothing.

After 536 days without a government, Belgian opposition parties struck a deal today to form a new coalition led by Socialist Elio Di Rupo. On this side of the pond, 563 days without any congressional action on fiscal or budgetary measures would go most of the way toward achieving the deficit reduction Congress is longing for. As Center for American Progress Director of Tax and Budget Policy Michael Linden has pointed out, if Congress were do to nothing between now and January 2013 (just 397 days from now), the federal budget deficit would fall to just 1.6 percent of gross domestic product and continue dropping after that:

Similarly, debt as a share of GDP would fall to just 61 percent by 2021:

Such reductions would take place primarily due to the expiration of the budget-busting Bush tax cuts, which cost roughly $2.5 trillion over 10 years. The spending cuts triggered by the inability of the supercommittee to reach a deal would also take place, and multiple policies that Congress generally kicks down the road, like the alternative minimum tax, would also take effect.

Of course, there are policies Congress could enact to actually help unemployed Americans and the struggling economy, like passing laws that would create jobs and stimulate growth while addressing much-needed improvements in infrastructure and other areas. But if the goal is only to reduce debt and deficits, perhaps it’s better if members take their cue from the Belgians and just go home for a year or two.

via CHART: If Congress Left For 536 Days (Like Belgium), It Could Almost Eliminate The Deficit | ThinkProgress.

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Tax Cuts for the Rich on the Backs of the Middle Class; or, Paul Ryan Has Balls: Matt Taibbi

Great article in Rolling Stone from Matt Taibbi.

I love is snarky tone and accurate facts…

Here is a brief excerpt and I encourage you to click the link to read the rest of it…..

Never mind that each time the Republicans actually come into power, federal deficit spending explodes and these whippersnappers somehow never get around to touching Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid. The key is that for the many years before that moment of truth, before these buffoons actually get a chance to put their money where their lipless little mouths are, they will stomp their feet and scream about how entitlements are bringing us to the edge of apocalypse.

The reason for this is always the same: the Republicans, quite smartly, recognize that there is great political hay to be made in the appearance of deficit reduction, and that white middle class voters will respond with overwhelming enthusiasm to any call for reductions in the “welfare state,” a term which said voters will instantly associate with black welfare moms and Mexicans sneaking over the border to visit American emergency rooms.

The problem, of course, is that to actually make significant cuts in what is left of the “welfare state,” one has to cut Medicare and Medicaid, programs overwhelmingly patronized by white people, and particularly white seniors. So when the time comes to actually pull the trigger on the proposed reductions, the whippersnappers are quietly removed from the stage and life goes on as usual, i.e. with massive deficit spending on defense, upper-class tax cuts, bailouts, corporate subsidies, and big handouts to Pharma and the insurance industries.

via Tax Cuts for the Rich on the Backs of the Middle Class; or, Paul Ryan Has Balls | Rolling Stone Politics | Taibblog | Matt Taibbi on Politics and the Economy.

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GOP Budget Proposal: Ludicrous and Cruel

Excellent analysis of Paul Ryan’s GOP Budget proposal by Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman in today’s New York Times:

And then there’s the much-ballyhooed proposal to abolish Medicare and replace it with vouchers that can be used to buy private health insurance.

The point here is that privatizing Medicare does nothing, in itself, to limit health-care costs. In fact, it almost surely raises them by adding a layer of middlemen. Yet the House plan assumes that we can cut health-care spending as a percentage of G.D.P. despite an aging population and rising health care costs.

The only way that can happen is if those vouchers are worth much less than the cost of health insurance. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that by 2030 the value of a voucher would cover only a third of the cost of a private insurance policy equivalent to Medicare as we know it. So the plan would deprive many and probably most seniors of adequate health care.

And that neither should nor will happen. Mr. Ryan and his colleagues can write down whatever numbers they like, but seniors vote. And when they find that their health-care vouchers are grossly inadequate, they’ll demand and get bigger vouchers — wiping out the plan’s supposed savings.

In short, this plan isn’t remotely serious; on the contrary, it’s ludicrous.

And it’s also cruel.

In the past, Mr. Ryan has talked a good game about taking care of those in need. But as the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities points out, of the $4 trillion in spending cuts he proposes over the next decade, two-thirds involve cutting programs that mainly serve low-income Americans. And by repealing last year’s health reform, without any replacement, the plan would also deprive an estimated 34 million nonelderly Americans of health insurance.

So the pundits who praised this proposal when it was released were punked. The G.O.P. budget plan isn’t a good-faith effort to put America’s fiscal house in order; it’s voodoo economics, with an extra dose of fantasy, and a large helping of mean-spiritedness.

via Ludicrous and Cruel – NYTimes.com.

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Warren Buffet: There is Class Warfare and the Rich Are Winning – MarketWatch

Per my previous column about the Rich being different…

Buffet is Wealthy, one of the good guys, not one of the Evil Rich…

Yes, “there’s class warfare, all right,” warns Warren Buffett. “But it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.” Yes, the rich are making war against us. And yes, they are winning. Why? Because so many are fighting this new American Civil War between the rich and the rest.

Not just the 16 new GOP governors in Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Florida, and across America fighting for new powers. Others include: Chamber of Commerce billionaires, Koch brothers, Forbes 400, Karl Rove’s American Crossroads, Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform — which now has 97% of House Republicans and 85% of the GOP Senators signed on his “no new taxes” pledge — the Tea Party and Reaganomics ideologues.

Buffett: Deals wanted

Warren Buffett said he is ready to make more acquisitions in Korea, the U.S. or the UK, and he said “the bigger the better”. Shira Ovide talks with Kelsey Hubbard about Berkshire Hathaway’s next move, plus Buffet’s positive outlook on Japan.

Wake up America. You are under attack. Stop kidding yourself. We are at war. In fact, we have been fighting this Civil War for a generation, since Ronald Reagan was elected in 1981. Recently Buffett renewed the battle cry: The “rich class” is winning this war. Except most Americans still don’t realize they’re losing, don’t see the prize at stake.

via New Civil War erupts, led by super rich, GOP Paul B. Farrell – MarketWatch.

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“Tax, Tax, Tax the Rich!” Calls to Tax Wealthy Making Right Wingers Sweat? | | AlterNet

It’s about time….

The main driver of the Federal Deficit is the Bush Tax Cuts for the Wealthy.

End those tax cuts for the wealthy and get out of Afghanistan and Iraq and we won’t have any budget problems…

A simple but powerful chant is now starting to reverberate, all across the country, in protests against budgets cuts gone wild.

“How to fix the deficit?” marchers are shouting. “Tax, tax, tax the rich!”

That sentiment, unfortunately, hasn’t yet reached deep into many law-making chambers. Last week, in the nation’s capital, Rep. Jan Schakowsky from Illinois did introduce legislation that would up taxes on income over $1 million, from the current 35 percent to a range of new rates that run from 45 to 49 percent.

But the budget debate in Congress still revolves almost exclusively around questions about how much to cut, with no attention at all to the vast untaxed fortunes of America’s super rich. In state legislatures, largely the same story.

So why are cheerleaders for America’s rich starting to sweat? They’re hearing the rising drumbeat — from labor and community groups the nation over — for new “millionaire” taxes. And they’re watching the polls, too. Over 80 percent of Americans, the latest surveys show, want higher taxes on our richest.

via “Tax, Tax, Tax the Rich!” Calls to Tax Wealthy Making Right Wingers Sweat? | | AlterNet.

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