Saturday, November 11, 2006

Tax Cuts

Wait a minute. I'm confused. Way back when I registered to vote, I understood that cutting taxes was the province of the Republicans. We've all heard the chant from the progressives that the GWB tax cuts were designed to help the wealthy. That evil Chimpy oil baron Halliburton cabal trying to shelter the rich from paying their fair share of taxes. Who are the rich, you ask? Beats me, but I ain't one of them.

As I've grown older, I've made more money. I don't consider myself rich by American standards, being comfortably middle class in housing, income, and employment. Last year, my wife and I were shocked to see the total amount of income on line 37 of our combined 1040. She's been doing what she does for over 25 years, and I've been doing what I do for over 25 years, and experience counts for something in the pay column, although we are both just working stiffs.

Then there's this thing called the AMT, or Alternative Minimum Tax, which targets taxpayers making $100,000 to $500,000. I don't qualify for that yet, thank God, but bracket creep and normal career progression are such that we might have to face it soon.

Guess who is riding to the rescue? The Democrats. Yeah, those tax cutting Democrats.
Rep. Charles B. Rangel (D-N.Y.), the presumptive chairman of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, this week put fixing the AMT at the top of his agenda, calling it far more urgent than dealing with President Bush's request to extend the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, which are scheduled to expire in 2010.
Why does Charlie Rangel want to do that? The answer is down one paragraph.
The focus on the AMT is hardly surprising, given that victims of the tax have been concentrated in high-cost urban areas such as Washington, New York and San Francisco -- places that tend to vote Democratic. Rangel, Hoyer and Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), the presumptive House speaker, all represent states hit hard by the AMT, which is sometimes called the "blue-state tax." To map states with the highest concentrations of AMT taxpayers is to draw bull's-eyes over California and the Northeastern seaboard.
The hell you say!

Now, don't get me wrong. I'm all for paying less taxes. Reagan came into power on tax cits. I believe that the economy is strongest when an individual makes his own investment decisions without the confiscatory bother of income taxes. I hope Charlie Rangel cuts taxes to the bone. For all Americans. Rich and Poor alike.


Anonymous said...

if the government cuts taxes how will they finance your "war on terra?" if the guvment cuts taxes the terrerists win! you cant have it both ways.

Pawpaw said...

Well, first of all, my concern with the post wasn't about the WOT. It was about gummint. Most tax cuts lead to greater revenues as the money moves around in the economy. And it's not My WOT, it is our WOT.

Anonymous said...

The Republicans have lost their way since '94, when they rode into town saying they were going to downsize government, cut spending, root out corruption, etc. Of late, they have blown it off, so last Tuesday the American people blew them off.
Anyone remember a big part of what cost Bush 41 his re-election? This: "Read my lips, no new taxes."

If you run on a platform of honesty and morality, you better deliver.

The Termite

oyster said...

"Most tax cuts lead to greater revenues"

THIS JUST IS NOT TRUE! I wish that it were, but it isn't. Tax revenues under Clinton were $2 trillion in 2000. In 2005, well after the celebrated Bush tax cuts, federal revenues were $1.9 trillion (adjusted for inflation).

Spending, however, skyrocketed under Bush and his GOP Congress, so it wasn't really a tax cut, it was a tax deferral to the next generation.

And the AMT shows why Bush's tax cuts would be only temporary for most folks-- even if they were extended again-- because more and more people would be affected by it (until some later Congress or President had the stones to reform it).

Read Alan Murray's quote in this post (it's about midway down) which explains why Supply Side theories are "voodoo economics". Bush I is right again!