Monday, July 26, 2010

An TownHall - Is It Fair To Hike Taxes On The Rich?!?

[Editor's Note: This is just a "setup" post. I'll roll out the topic, ya'll go in. I'd usually do a bit more, but after yesterday's tornado, I'm just fortunate to have power again. Yes, a tornado and an earthquake both hit DC in the span of a week! I can't wait to see how they blame this one on Obama.]

Along with death, and sucky DC sports teams, taxes are one of the few givens in American life. I think it's long since been established that nobody likes taxes, but you can't go all Wesley Snipes and whatnot either. Face it, taxes are the cover charge for living in the greatest nation evar. You just grin and bear it.[1]

Of course, not everyone's happy about this concept. Even though Obama followed through on a campaign promise of cutting taxes for 95% of working Americans, you wouldn't know it if you watched any form of Conservative news. From Tea Parties, to elected officials, to random unlicensed plumbers, everybody and their mamas swears we're taxed enough already, and the next step in this gubb'ment tyranny is chattel slavery. This, of course, sounds silly to me. Again, most folks got a tax cut.

Among those who didn't get a tax cut are the wealthy. In fact, depending on how you read the tea leaves (pun not intended), rich folks are about to join the rest of us in chattel slavery.
President Obama wants to let the cuts lapse for joint tax filers who make at least $250,000 ($200,000 for individuals) but extend them for everyone else. That means the top two tax rates would revert to where they were in the late 1990s: The 35% rate would go to 39.6% and the 33% rate would go to 36%.

The highest-income filers would also see their tax rates on capital gains and dividends go up. And, if they're in line for an inheritance, they will see the reinstatement of the estate tax, although Obama's proposed estate tax is a less onerous version than the one scheduled to be in place under current law.

The stakes are high: On the one hand, there are fresh concerns that the economic recovery might be faltering; higher taxes on the rich could dampen spending and investment. At the same time, the nation's fiscal hole is deep, and the tax cuts cost the federal coffers badly needed revenue.

The deficit concerns were amplified last week by former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan. Once a big supporter of the tax cuts, he now believes they should be allowed to expire not only for the rich but for everyone. He said the cost of extending them -- which could run as high as $3 trillion over 10 years -- will make the economy worse by adding to U.S. debt.
It goes without saying where I stand on this: tax the rich, and give the rest of us a break!

The very folks hemming and hawing about this right now had no issue when Bush (unnecessarily in my opinion) gave the rich a massive tax cut after taking office, and gave the rest of us a paltry $400 "Stimulus" check to divert our attention. With the country drowning in debt, and local governments even making employees bring their own toilet paper to work[2], we gotta bring in money somehow. Letting the tax cuts for the wealthy expire sounds like a damn good idea to me.

But is it fair? What say ye'?

Question: Is increasing taxes on the rich while giving everyone else a reprieve fair? Do you really give a sh*t about fairness in these lean economic times? Does this in effect "punish people for their success", or is it simply making people pay their fair share, given the fact that most rich people become rich off the backs of those less fortunate?

Tax hikes for the rich: Can the economy afford them? [CNN]

[1] I know, that video has nothing to do with the topic of this post. It was still, uhhhmmm, interesting though.

[2] WTF, Corey Booker?!?

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