by Jim Edsall
MISCONCEPTION 1: Tax revenues are down because the rich don’t pay enough.
FACT: Tax revenues are down because 46% of Americans pay NO federal income tax
The biggest reason that government revenues are relatively low compared to GDP recently is NOT that the tax rate on the rich is “only” 35%. It is because Bush got so progressive with his tax cuts that 46% of Americans now pay NO federal income taxes:
Yes, all who are employed pay payroll taxes (“FICA” toward Medicare and Social Continue reading
July 2, 2012 by Jim Edsall
On June 28, 2012, the United States Supreme Court ruled that the mandate to purchase health insurance in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“ObamaCare”) is constitutional. Chief Justice John Roberts joined the liberal wing of the court to form a majority upholding the law, and how he reached that conclusion is highly problematic for all Americans. Writing the majority opinion, Roberts declared that “penalties” imposed for failure to purchase health insurance are not permissible under the Commerce Clause, but that they are constitutional as a “tax”. In so doing, he strayed far beyond the limits of the role of the court, re-writing a statute in the name of deference to the legislature, and disregarding precedent established by previous tax cases.
By this ruling, Roberts greatly expanded the power of Congress to impose punitive penalties on people who do not behave as they wish. The government can now punish you with a tax if you don’t buy an energy efficient house, or a GM car, or, yes, even broccoli. Liberals who applaud this ruling, beware – one day a different Congress and President could use this power in ways that you would not like. A law could now be passed declaring that unless a person joins the military and serves a minimum of two years he or she will be charged $2000.00 per year until they change their mind and join. Under the precedent set by John Roberts’ ruling, such a law would be “constitutional”. The government wouldn’t be telling anyone that they have to join, just that if they don’t they would have to pay for their “non-participation” and for being a “free rider”. They can even call it a “penalty” to avoid the political fall-out of calling it a “tax”. The government would just take it out of their tax refund, just like with ObamaCare.
If you are not already bothered by the effect of this decision, consider the twisted reasoning by which it was reached. Continue reading
June 18, 2012 by Jim Edsall
In his 54-minute speech on the economy in Ohio on June 14, 2012, President Obama claimed that electing Mitt Romney would mean a return to “the policies of the last decade”, that is, to the economic policies of George W. Bush. Romney’s policies are indeed like those of a former president, but that president is not George W. Bush. It is Ronald Reagan.
Yesterday on Fox News Sunday, former Clinton advisor Joe Trippi lauded Obama’s speech as right on target for 2012. Why? Because the President is desperate to make this election a contrast between himself and Romney, rather than a referendum on his own performance. The tactic of trying to tie Romney to Bush is a clever one, as recent polls show that 65% of the American people believe that the economic downturn is still either largely or at least partly due to Bush. Trippi believes that speech effectively reset the debate.
Romney has thus far successfully kept the focus on President Obama and his failure to turn the economy around, particularly the unemployment rate Continue reading