Crocodile tears over taxesWritten by Don Burnard | | email@example.com
We’ve been discussing the extension of the Bush tax cuts and the deficit hawks’ counterintuitive love of extending the tax cuts for the billionaires who make up their base, even at the cost of $700 billion during the next decade. The same old claptrap and fear that they’ve been peddling, along with the outright lies and revisionist history seem to be the only thing they have going in answer to our plight.
They’ve been peddling this crap since the FDR years to try to stifle any innovation in the way we do things in America.
The betterment of the better off is their only concern and the rest of us can pound sand as far as they are concerned. Unfortunately, too many people seem to be buying into this against their own self-interest. They scream about how we need to get back to the Founding Fathers’ view in our country. I would humbly point out that the major belief behind the American Revolution, which everyone seems to forget, was that every American was equal, and that there should be no ruling class in this country. Evidently, they didn’t get the memo in the GOP and corporate world.
These days, the constant drumbeat on the right is that the only way to create jobs is by giving the richest of our citizens the lion’s share of the economic pie. This started with the discredited trickle-down economics of the Reagan administration and culminated with the Bush tax cuts, which were introduced against the advice of his top economic advisers and led to the no growth, no jobs, economic-imploding decade that we’ve experienced and continue to experience.
None of the promises that were made have come to pass for anyone other than the very top of the economic food chain. Their answer to this conundrum? More of the same!
The main effect that the Bush tax cuts had was to reduce government revenue and to double the deficit that they are now crying crocodile tears over. If you need further proof that they have learned nothing in the past 10 years, look no further than Ohio’s John Kasich, whose “plan” to deal with the hardships in our state is to do away with the state income tax and to cut regulations for businesses, including the financial sector that made him a multimillionaire under some nebulous plan that he refuses to release (like his tax returns). Instead, we’re given the same patented, vague GOP promises, couched in sound bites about how our well-being is their No. 1 concern.
How long are we going to keep falling for this people?
I’ve been called a Socialist, Communist, and lots of other cutesy buzzwords by tea partiers and wealth managers who cry that Obama and I want to redistribute wealth in this country.
Let’s take a look at some more of those pesky facts. President Obama’s tax cuts benefited more than 95 percent of Americans, and the average taxpayer will receive a nearly $3,000 tax cut this year, up nearly $1,000 from last year. According to the Citizens for Tax Justice, the lower 20 percent of income earners (up to $19,972 in 2009) received an average of $604.
Under the Bush tax cuts, they received an average tax cut of $22, according to the Center for Tax Policy. The next 20 percent (up to $38,000 in 2009) got an average tax cut of $628 as compared to $360 under the Bush tax cuts. Ninety-seven percent of small business owners receive tax cuts under the Obama plan. Yes, the same small business owners that Mitch McConnell loses sleep over. Except under the figures that Mitch uses, these include movie stars, athletes, law firms and many others that the average person doesn’t think of as small businesses.
The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities says that a family of four in the exact center of the income spectrum will pay 4.6 percent of their income in taxes this year under Obama’s tax cuts, and will average a 10 percent increase in their refund. Under Bush, in 2005, 66.7 percent of all U.S. corporations paid no income tax. Didn’t the Supreme Court decide that corporations are people? How come you and I didn’t get that deal? And we want to go back to this? Perhaps in the next column we should look at where the real wealth distribution is going. It might surprise some of you tea and Kool-Aid drinkers.
E-mail columnist Don Burnard at firstname.lastname@example.org.