What Fresh Hell Is This?

March 20, 2010

Tea-Party: Anti-Tax And Yet Tax-Ignorant

Turns out that the Anti-Tax "Tea Partiers" don't know much 'bout taxes.

And who says so? I can hear my good friends on the other side of the blogger aisle cluckling that this piece of gossip is probably from the DailyKos or the Huffingtonpost or the Moveon.org.

Wrong. Wrong. And wrong.

It's from Forbes.com

Now I can hear them clucking that it's probably just some moonbat liberal who lucked onto the magazine's website for a one-shot deal.

Wrong again, it's Bruce Bartlett, domestic policy advisor to Ronald Reagan, and Treasury official under George H. W. Bush and he has a weekly column at Forbes.com.

Here's what he says he did:
On March 16 the Tea Party crowd showed up for yet another demonstration on Capitol Hill in Washington. Curious about the factual knowledge these people have regarding the issues they are protesting, my friend David Frum enlisted some interns to interview as many Tea Partyers as possible on a couple of basic questions. They got 57 responses--a pretty good-sized sample from a crowd that numbered between 300 and 500 people.
David Frum? He's another conservative. Resident Fellow at AEI and speech writer for George W Bush.

And what did Bartlet's interns find?
The first question that was asked concerned the size of government. Tea Partyers were asked how much the federal government gets in taxes as a percentage of the gross domestic product. According to Congressional Budget Office data, acceptable answers would be 6.4%, which is the percentage for federal income taxes; 12.7%, which would be for both income taxes and Social Security payroll taxes; or 14.8%, which would represent all federal taxes as a share of GDP in 2009.

Not everyone follows these numbers closely, and Tea Partyers may have been thinking of figures from a few years ago, before the recession when taxes were higher. According to the CBO, the highest figure for all federal taxes since 1970 came in the year 2000, when they reached 20.6% of GDP. As we know, after that George W. Bush and Republicans in Congress cut federal taxes; they fell to 18.5% of GDP in 2007, before the recession hit, and 17.5% in 2008.

Tuesday's Tea Party crowd, however, thought that federal taxes were almost three times as high as they actually are. The average response was 42% of GDP and the median 40%. The highest figure recorded in all of American history was half those figures: 20.9% at the peak of World War II in 1944. [emphasis added]
The TP crowd got more wrong:
Tea Partyers also seem to have a very distorted view of the direction of federal taxes. They were asked whether they are higher, lower or the same as when Barack Obama was inaugurated last year. More than two-thirds thought that taxes are higher today, and only 4% thought they were lower; the rest said they are the same.

As noted earlier, federal taxes are very considerably lower by every measure since Obama became president. And given the economic circumstances, it's hard to imagine that a tax increase would have been enacted last year. In fact, 40% of Obama's stimulus package involved tax cuts. These include the Making Work Pay Credit, which reduces federal taxes for all taxpayers with incomes below $75,000 by between $400 and $800.

According to the JCT, last year's $787 billion stimulus bill, enacted with no Republican support, reduced federal taxes by almost $100 billion in 2009 and another $222 billion this year. The Tax Policy Center, a private research group, estimates that close to 90% of all taxpayers got a tax cut last year and almost 100% of those in the $50,000 income range. For those making between $40,000 and $50,000, the average tax cut was $472; for those making between $50,000 and $75,000, the tax cut averaged $522. No taxpayer anywhere in the country had his or her taxes increased as a consequence of Obama's policies. [Emphasis added.]
So The Tea Party crowd is wrong about taxes, I get it.

Hey, they watch alotta Fox "News" don't they?


Eric said...

Would be so interesting to see what spin some of them would have when this info is presented to them...

Heir to the Throne said...

so according to your guys Obama did not raise taxes on smokers.
There are no tax increases in the HCR Bill either?

Get ready for increased taxes

Conservative Mountaineer said...

@Heir.. There you go again, using facts and logic. You should be ashamed of yourself. ;)

Yeah, those making $50,000 a year are really creating jobs, aren't they?

Conservative Mountaineer said...

Here's a news flash - a HUGE portion of the $787B 'stimulus' went to prop-up State and local government UNION employees's wages (including teachers).. wages that, by all rights should have been cut. Oh, I forgot.. everyone must sacrifice, unless you're in a government Union. Funny thing is, that wage support has only delayed the inevitable... there will be and should be pain experienced by all government Union employees.

Clyde Wynant said...

Here's one other thing I believe this points out, and that is that Obama and his people have done a piss poor job of communicating with the American people about these facts. They have allowed themselves to be painted as "tax and spend liberals," while the Right goes around still mouthing platitudes about the Bush tax cuts.....

Mike said...

Here is some news about the tea partiers: http://thinkprogress.org/2010/03/20/tea-party-spit/

Besides being uninformed, these people are disgusting. They are just one step below wearing white hoods and burning crosses.

Conservative Mountaineer said...

(Non)News Flash, Clyde:

Obama IS a tax-and-spend liberal. No doubt. No question. Pelosi IS a tax-and-spend liberal. Ditto.

But, Obama is no Jimmah Cartah.. he's worse!

EdHeath said...

So CM, Forbes magazine is run by lying scumbag liberals?

Or didn't you bother to read the post?

Mark Rickard said...

One question: if the percentage of GDP is so low, why can't they live within their means?

Projected deficit ten years out is $9000 billion. Bush left with a deficit of $400 billion

So who's really right here?

EdHeath said...

Were there projected deficits out ten years for Bush, or should we just compare apples to oranges?

What component of the projected deficit is attributed to HCR?

What should we make of the meltdown in the financial industry that occurred during Bush's Presidency?

No, You're right, obviously your comparison is the only reasonable one, and clearly Obama and his godless pinko "Democratic" comrades have used the William Ayers/Karl Marx playbook to destroy the republic and have started implementing their secret plan to rule the country as a dictatorship. If the Congressional Democrats had any soul, they would start impeachment proceedings immediately, but they sold their soul for a sliver of power.

Have they implemented martial law yet? Have the November elections been canceled yet?

Jeff said...

I get real tired of reading about the deficit inherited by Obama.
It was Dick Cheney who repeatedly said "Deficits Don't Matter"!
It was 8 years of Bush raiding the treasury and turning a budget surplus into a few trillion of red ink that put us where we are. The latest news is the the government is making Billions i n profits from the bank bailouts.
I remember 8 years of rubber stamp GOP controlled government and anyone who spoke out against Bush and the wars spending was unpatriotic!