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"Middle-class families shouldn't pay higher taxes than millionaires and billionaires. "That's pretty straightforward. It's hard to argue against that." - Barack Obama, on monday.
Yes, it would be hard to argue against that...if it was the truth. But it's not the truth. Our President is a big fat liar. Here's AP Factcheck:
President Barack Obama makes it sound as if there are millionaires all over America paying taxes at lower rates than their secretaries...The data tell a different story. On average, the wealthiest people in America pay a lot more taxes than the middle class or the poor, according to private and government data. They pay at a higher rate, and as a group, they contribute a much larger share of the overall taxes collected by the federal government.
Obama says the top !% should pay their "fair share" of taxes, leading us to believe the rich are getting away with something. Wrong. From 2010 IRS data, it is known that the top 1% of earners in this country pay 38% of the federal income taxes, while making 20% of adjusted gross income, which means they are paying nearly double their "fair share". The top 20% of earners pay 87.3% of the federal income taxes. On the other end of the scale, nearly 50% of the workers pay no income taxes. The top 5% of earners pay more in income taxes than the bottom 95%. Enough of this "fair share" nonsense. Obama's tax proposal has nothing to do with fairness. Plus, the top 1% have a median income of $380,000 per year, not millions and billions. There are very few people in the million dollar earning range. In a country of 310 million people, only 236,000 have incomes above a million bucks. That's 0.007% of the population, and they already pay 20% of total federal income taxes. If anyone thinks taxing those few folks more is going to close a $1.6 trillion deficit and pay for the rest of us, you better think again.
In his latest speech, which comes on the heels of his speech proposing $447 billion in new stimulus measures, the President has proposed $3 trillion in deficit reduction. According to the Prez, his deficit reduction will consist of $1.5 trillion in spending cuts and $1.5 trillion in tax increases, but as usual with this President, things are not what they appear to be. Let's take a closer look at that proposal.
On the spending side, Obama is counting as cuts $1 trillion in savings on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. There's some major deception by the big fat liar here:
$1 trillion saved by ending combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. Republicans and some independent budget analysts say this is a gimmick because the troop drawdowns were already under way and amount to an accounting adjustment.
In other words, Obama is counting as savings $1 trillion in military spending that was never going to happen anyway. The real savings here is zero. The President is not the only big fat liar in this area. The Republicans also counted the phantom military savings as deficit reduction in their House budget proposal.
Obama's plan is really a $2 trillion deficit reduction package, 3/4's of which consists of various tax increases. Here are the rest of Obama's proposed spending cuts:
MEDICARE AND MEDICAID: $248 billion in reductions to Medicare. About 90 percent of the Medicare cuts would be squeezed from service providers such as drug companies, hospitals and nursing homes. Starting in 2017, the plan would significantly increase what many seniors pay for premiums, copayments and deductibles. Medicaid and other federal health care programs would be cut by about $73 billion. Among the proposals would be measures designed to reduce federal Medicaid payments to states.
OTHER MANDATORY SPENDING: $260 billion in cuts to other mandatory spending programs, including $33 billion by ending income support payments to farmers. The plan also would reduce federal workers' paychecks by 1.2 percent over three years, saving the government about $21 billion over 10 years. The plan estimates savings of nearly $78 billion by reducing waste and abuse in federal programs.
All I can say is, if a Republican President proposed cutting Medicare/Medicaid payments and raising premiums, copays, and deductibles, every liberal from coast to coast would be screaming about how the Republicans don't care about seniors and the poor. Remember the reaction to the Ryan plan ? And don't forget that ObamaCare already allegedly cuts $500 billion from Medicare. Also, notice the 2017 start date for the increased costs to seniors. Those would conveniently start right AFTER Obama completed his second term. What courage. And liberals, did y'all notice that Obama wants to cut the salaries of federal workers ? What about collective bargaining rights ? Oh wait. Those federal workers don't have them. Never did. When will you launch the 'Recall Obama' campaign, like you did to legislators in Wisconsin, or the 'Repeal SB5' campaign, like you did in Ohio ? Hmmm ? I can't hear you....
On the tax side, Obama wants to end the Bush tax cuts for couples making over $250,000, limit tax deductions for the wealthy, and end some corporate loopholes and subsidies. This comes on top of the $1 trillion in spending cuts the super committee is working on as a result of the August debt deal. The rosiest way to look at all this is, if the entire $3 trillion in revenue increases and spending cuts over ten years is enacted, our annual deficit will drop ALL THE WAY DOWN TO $1.3 TRILLION !!! Hurrah !!! Mission Accomplished !!! Four More Years !!! Four More Years !!! It's not exactly Morning In America, but AT LEAST IT'S NOT THE GREAT DEPRESSION !!!
I just thought of something. Doesn't conventional economic wisdom say one shouldn't raise taxes during a recession ??? I thought so, and here's what one of the leaders of our country said a couple years ago...
"The last thing you want to do is raise taxes during a recession, because that would just suck up, take more demand out of the economy, and further put businesses in a hole" - Barack Obama, August 2009.
Yes, I agree. Maybe somebody should introduce this Barack Obama to that other Barack Obama guy. Who knew there were two of them ?
If any of you are wondering why I haven't mentioned the proposed Buffett Rule...it's because there ISN'T a proposal:
...the administration said it wanted the Buffett Rule to be a guiding principle for tax reform. But that was it on details. "We're not going to give the Congress a detailed proposal for how to meet that specific principle now because there's lots of different ways to do that," Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner said Monday.
Perhaps on another day, once the administration figures it out.