What Fresh Hell Is This?

July 11, 2012

More On Scaife's Braintrust

A few days ago the editorial board over at Richard Mellon Scaife's Tribune-Review published yet another reality challenged attack on President Obama's policies.

Let's take a look at what they got wrong.  Here's the set-up:
Call it the Hobson’s choice of The Great Tax Debate — shaft the economy now or shaft the economy later.

President Obama on Monday called for a one-year extension of the Bush-era tax cuts for single filers making less than $200,000 and families making less $250,000. It’s a matter of “fairness,” he said.

Actually, it’s matter of politics; the proposal will be dead on arrival in the House. The president not only further seeks to stoke the furnaces of class envy, he fuels overall tax policy uncertainty that retards the spark of any hoped-for economic recovery.
And now some context.  The Citizens for Tax Justice created some artwork to explain what the argument is all about:

See that big red bar across the top?  See how much farther it extends than the smaller blue bar just below it?  See how all the other pairings of red and blue lines are more or less the same size?

That's the difference between what the Obama Administration wants to do with the Bush tax cuts and what the GOP wants to do with them.  All of the efforts extended by the GOP are all about protecting that long red bar.  It's about protecting that $50,000 difference.  That's fifty grand (on average) for every tax payer in the top 1%.

That's what they're fighting to protect.

And how many people are we talking here?  CTJ has an answer for that one, too:
President Obama’s proposal to extend most, but not all, of the Bush tax cuts, would result in 1.9 percent of Americans losing some portion of the Bush income tax cuts.
Back to the Trib:
Don’t count on small businesses to jump for much joy. Oh, there might be short-term tax savings, but with only a one-year extension, they really can’t plan for any kind of long-term investment and expansion.

And “the rich,” those above the $250,000 threshold, certainly won’t be rushing to invest and expand. Individual taxes will rise anywhere from a rate of 33 percent to nearly 40 percent. Capital gains taxes will jump from a rate of 15 percent to nearly 24 percent. And the top tax rate on dividends will go from 15 percent to more than 43 percent.
So how many people are we talking here?  According to this memo from the Joint Committee on Taxation, it's about 970,000 tax payers and they represent only about 3.5% of all small business owners.

All that money for such a small sliver of the population.  All that work to protect the already vast profits of the already fabulously wealthy.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Republican Party and their defenders in the right wing media.

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