WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic vice presidential candidate Joe Biden said Thursday that paying more in taxes is the patriotic thing to do for wealthier Americans. In a new TV ad that repeats widely debunked claims about the Democratic tax plan, the Republican campaign calls Obama’s tax increases “painful.”
Under the economic plan proposed by Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, people earning more than $250,000 a year would pay more in taxes while those earning less – the vast majority of American taxpayers – would receive a tax cut.
Although Republican John McCain claims that Obama would raise taxes, the independent Tax Policy Center and other groups conclude that four out of five U.S. households would receive tax cuts under Obama’s proposals.
Noting that wealthier Americans would indeed pay more, Biden said: “It’s time to be patriotic … time to jump in, time to be part of the deal, time to help get America out of the rut.”
Biden’s gaffe, if you want to call it that (and they will), will probably get a lot more airplay that McCain’s dissassembling.
I found a really good graph comparing the two tax policy proposals from the candidates.
You can see it here.
And Biden is right, it is time for the rich to start paying their fair share. They haven’t been since Bush’s massive upper class tax cuts. Now some people think that a higher ratio for the rich is some kind of class warfare, but what they often forget is the VAST majority of wealth in this country in concentrated in a few small portion of the populace. There are larger differences in income and wealth now in the U.S. than ever before.
And they got a whole bunch worse with Bush’s tax policy, which included a massive tax cut and starting a war, both of which McCain endorses. BTW, Bush was the first President to cut taxes during a war. Taxes were increased to pay for every U.S. war in history (except for the one with Mexico…which was paid for by Texas).
Some people will dismiss the Obama’s proposal “Class Warfare”. What I see it as is something made to avoid actual class warfare. You know, the killing and robbing kind.
But enough on that, let’s talk about McCain’s lies. McCain thinks that Obama is going to raise taxes on “Middle Class Americans” because McCain thinks that “Middle Class Americans” make around two or three million dollars a year.
Now, McCain might have been joking about that, but he wasn’t joking when he said that the Americans wouldn’t pick lettuce for $50/hour.
And now he wants to cut taxes, mostly for the richest 1%.
That’s just not responsible government. You can’t cut out earmarks and balance the budget. We had a $406,000,000,000 shortfall this last year, and the total for earmarks is around $16-18,000,000,000. That’s not going to even get us close…
For instance, estimates from watchdog groups of total earmark spending in fiscal 2008 range from $16-18 billion. Current estimated outlays for the federal government in fiscal 2008 are $2.9 trillion (PDF). That’s less than one percent.
To put it another way, the current projected deficit is roughly $400 billion. Even if John McCain got rid of every earmark (an impossible task), it would only make a small contribution to deficit reduction. (See Factcheck.org’s takedown of McCain’s exaggerated claims of how much it can save by reducing earmarks.)
So you could cut out every single infrastructure improvement project in the country (what “earmarks” often are) and that wouldn’t bring us anywhere near to balancing the budget. You can’t stop going to the movies when your salary is less than your rent and hope that somehow those “savings” balance the books.
What we need now are responsible politicians that don’t feed people the bullshit line that you can cut taxes to increase tax revenue in each and every economic situation.
This isn’t the 70’s, with a top marginal rate in the 70’s (percent).
This is the 00’s, with a top marginal rate in the teens (maturity-wise).
It’s a new situation and it needs a better solution than the one Bush offered (the one McCain was against before he was for it…both of which were *way* before he started lying about the whole thing).
If we look to history, the answer is easy. It we “make our own history” in the Neocon way, then we can happily make the same mistakes that have been made since time immemorial.