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How the Expiring Bush Tax Cuts Affect You

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bamacre

Lifer
Jul 1, 2004
21,030
1
61
Thanks for the baseless ideological pontificating. You know what won't pay down the debt for sure? Not raising the money to pay it down.
I say not one tax increase until spending is cut. Starting with foreign policy.
 

spittledip

Diamond Member
Apr 23, 2005
4,480
1
81
No no no.

This is the mantra.

Corporations evil, government good. Wash, rinse, repeat.

Part of "the program" whatever that is, is to drastically increase Medicaid. That's going to cost $$$$. Health care? $$$$ (and I have a nice bridge to sell anyone who really believes that government is going to save on the TCO of health care- Medicare projections vs. actual costs for example).

Yes, we're going to spend spend spend out way out of this financial situation, but we're going to increase taxes and that's going to decrease what the government (read us) owes.

Show me on paper how that works.
I am not saying that you are actually saying this, but it seems like either side likes to create this false dichotomy that corps are bad and govt good, or govt is bad and corps are good. Both can be good if properly regulated. Corps need to be regulated by the govt, and the govt needs to be regulated by the people. Right now neither is regulated very well. In America as it is today, the only ones really getting regulated are the people. It is a sickly amusing irony.
 

TridenT

Lifer
Sep 4, 2006
16,810
45
91
Baseless?

The government raided SS - Check.
Government programs far exceeding projected costs- Check.
Government spending increases in good times and bad- Check.

So when did the federal government ever take a tax increase and not spend it?

You know what won't pay down the debt for sure? Spending the money not paying down the debt.

So let's get this on the record.

Assuming a tax increase, will Congress spend it or dedicate it to paying down the debt, or if both how do you think it divided?

History is on my side. Discredit me and show when the federal government has increased taxes to pay for reducing the deficit, and I mean in a substantial non smoke and mirrors way.
You're acting ignorant

They have to spend more when the times hit hard. They have to spend more on things like unemployment, job programs, and other shit. Fuck, it's just general economics. At least read a book or take a college level class on the stuff

EDIT: One of the other stuff(this will blow your mind) is creating debt because the tax revenues go down, and so yeah... we go into debt when a recession hits because we like to keep our standards of living high, and because we like to fund wars/armies/naval-fleets, etc. Although, we do like to cut space programs. :p
 
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boomerang

Lifer
Jun 19, 2000
18,890
639
126
You're acting ignorant

They have to spend more when the times hit hard. They have to spend more on things like unemployment, job programs, and other shit. Fuck, it's just general economics. At least read a book or take a college level class on the stuff

EDIT: One of the other stuff(this will blow your mind) is creating debt because the tax revenues go down, and so yeah... we go into debt when a recession hits because we like to keep our standards of living high, and because we like to fund wars/armies/naval-fleets, etc. Although, we do like to cut space programs. :p
You know, I think I hear your mother calling you. Maybe you should go find out what she wants.
 

Jhhnn

No Lifer
Nov 11, 1999
62,345
14,566
136
History is on my side. Discredit me and show when the federal government has increased taxes to pay for reducing the deficit, and I mean in a substantial non smoke and mirrors way.
I think you need only look at the tax rates of WW2 and the aftermath, and at the 1993 tax increases to see that raising taxes has been used to reduce deficits.

As for "paying down the debt"- forget it. The world's wealthiest citizens love US govt securities, and were squealing like piggies at the end of Clinton's second term when their availability was scarce.

Why else do you think the Bush Admin immediately reversed the fiscal direction of this country? To help the little guy? Get Real.

About the best we'll ever see is balance, with the rollover interest being a permanent subsidy to the wealthy.

It's entirely possible that Congress can maintain the current level of taxation for the working class and most of the middle class, if repubs don't hold those levels hostage to extending the top echelon tax cuts...

We rather desperately need to increase taxes at the top, anyway, for a lot of reasons, not the least of which is social cohesion and a way to empower govt over wealth.

I've offered this link many times, but apparently the usual suspects deny what's right in front of their eyes, that america's wealthiest citizens have profited disproportionately over the last 30 years, very much so-

http://www.taxfoundation.org/news/show/250.html

Table 3 shows that the top .1% of filers had almost as much AGI as the bottom 50% combined in 2007, a far cry from the relationship in 1980. In 1980, the top 1% had roughly half the total income of the bottom 50%, while in 2007 they had roughly twice that of the lower 50%.

What happens if we continue to structure taxation in such a way as to allow that trend to continue? Or will emotional appeal and blind ideological adherence win out, make us into a nation of lords and serfs?
 

Mursilis

Diamond Member
Mar 11, 2001
7,756
11
81
Well, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are mandatory spending... so they can't exactly cut those. :p
:rolleyes: Don't be dumb - of course those can be cut! There is no spending which is "mandatory" on Congress if they wish to end it - all they have to do is change the law.
 

Carmen813

Diamond Member
May 18, 2007
3,189
0
76
Worse recession since the Great Depression...increase taxes...brilliant!
If these tax cuts had been coupled with equal spending cuts, then I'd agree that we'd be increasing taxes. However, they weren't, so really, all that they were was an advance. And the bill's due.
 
Nov 30, 2006
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If these tax cuts had been coupled with equal spending cuts, then I'd agree that we'd be increasing taxes. However, they weren't, so really, all that they were was an advance. And the bill's due.
I love the way you spin this as not a tax increase....and the amazing part is you actually believe it!
 

Carmen813

Diamond Member
May 18, 2007
3,189
0
76
And I love how you spin these as tax cuts, but then say the things in the stimulus bill aren't tax cuts, and believe it. When in reality they are two sides of the same coin, since neither was paid for. Hypocrisy FTW!

Hell, there is a reason that some CONSERVATIVES in Congress voted AGAINST the Bush tax cuts. Remember, Dick Cheney was the tie breaking vote and they used reconciliation to get past a filibuster...in a Republican controlled Senate. They were never meant to be permanent, as Congress refused to do the dirty work of finding spending offsets. In other words, the whole thing was borrowed money from China, and it was simply an advance. It's unfortunate that the bill is coming due during a recession, but had these tax cuts worked like Republicans said they would we would currently be in an economic boom and it wouldn't really be as big of a deal. Either we'd have the surplus to use to pay for it, or people would have such great jobs that the small increase in taxes wouldn't really matter to most Americans.

Instead, it's another mess Democrats were left to fix, and ultimately you know it won't happen. Those same Republicans who voted for it the first time won't this time, and they will hide under the cover of the federal deficit they helped to create as justification. Democrats won't touch it because that would mean raising the federal deficit even further, and right now its the #2 issue on voters minds, with #1 being the economy, which the cuts didn't seem to help the first time around. There is no political upside for Democrats with these "tax cuts," it's a lose-lose, and that can't help me but wonder if that's the reason they were designed to end in an election year in a first place.
 
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Nov 30, 2006
15,456
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not a tax increase...Not a tax increase...NOT a Tax Increase...NOT A TAX INCREASE! Sigh...it's just not working.

BTW...I love how you put words in my mouth about the stimulus bill that I never uttered...and then scream hypocrisy. Seriously.
 

Fern

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 30, 2003
26,907
173
106
And here I thought you wanted the deficit reduced ?

Of course the Bush taxcuts are going to expire, as well they should. They were forced through using reconscilliation (the thing you no doubt called evil when the Dems were considering it for healthcare), which means they could not last beyond 10 years.
This wasn't passed through a normal vote though, it was passed through reconsciliation. Basically the Republicans didn't actually have the votes they needed at the time, so they found a loophole and forced it through. But the loophole wasn't perfect, it had a 10-year limit by law (Byrd rule) since it increases the deficit.

It's absurd to complain about passing tax bills (or spending bills) via reconcilliation.

Those type of bills are the whole point of the reconcilliation process, unlike healthcare etc.

I.e., the reconcilliation process was not abused, was not a loophole but was used as per the Senate rules as in accordance with it's intended purpose. And I'm pretty sure the reason the cuts are sunsetted at 10 yrs is because that's required by the reconcilliation rule(s).

Fern
 

Fern

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 30, 2003
26,907
173
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http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/26/business/yourmoney/26every.html

Mr. Buffett compiled a data sheet of the men and women who work in his office. He had each of them make a fraction; the numerator was how much they paid in federal income tax and in payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare, and the denominator was their taxable income. The people in his office were mostly secretaries and clerks, though not all.

It turned out that Mr. Buffett, with immense income from dividends and capital gains, paid far, far less as a fraction of his income than the secretaries or the clerks or anyone else in his office. Further, in conversation it came up that Mr. Buffett doesn’t use any tax planning at all. He just pays as the Internal Revenue Code requires. “How can this be fair?” he asked of how little he pays relative to his employees. “How can this be right?”
I think the liberals Ben Stein and Warren Buffet sum up the situation pretty well.
Using Buffet as an example in a tax discussion is very misleading.

Mr. Buffet's low tax rate applies to only a very few taxpayers in a verty specific industry and is not applicable in any way to "rich people" as a whole.

Mr. Buffet is a a fund manager, and for some reason Congress carved out a special rule for them so that they pay only a tax rate of 15% on their income. So, unlike "rich people" Buffet is not subject to the higher (or highest) tax brackets like other high-earners.

Interestingly enough, Congress has in the past tried to rectify this only to be prevented by C. Schumer (D) from NY. Presumably he's protecting Wall Street because it's in his district.

Fern
 
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blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
20,991
853
126
Using Buffet as an example in a tax discussion is very misleading.

Mr. Buffet's low tax rate applies to only a very few taxpayers in a verty specific industry and is not applicable in any way to "rich people" as a whole.

Mr. Buffet is a a fund manager, and for some Congress carved out a special rule for them so that they pay only a tax rate of 15% on their income. So, unlike "rich people" Buffet is not subject to the higher (or highest) tax brackets like other high-earners.

Interestingly enough, Congress has in the past tried to rectify this only to be prevented by C. Schumer (D) from NY. Presumably he's protecting Wall Street because it's in his district.

Fern
Interesting. didnt know that.

:hmm:
 

Carmen813

Diamond Member
May 18, 2007
3,189
0
76
not a tax increase...Not a tax increase...NOT a Tax Increase...NOT A TAX INCREASE! Sigh...it's just not working.
BTW...I love how you put words in my mouth about the stimulus bill that I never uttered...and then scream hypocrisy. Seriously.
Does this sound familiar?

Congress and the President have the power to repeal the Bush tax cuts...no? So who's the blame here...Bush and Republicans for passing it...or Obama and Dems for failing to repeal it? Are the Dems actually serious about fixing the deficit? Or is this just a BDS hangover? Seriously.
Or this?
I share your criticism of Bush for the tax cuts to the wealthy and wish Congress would take action to repeal that part and not throw out the other tax cuts for the middle and lower classes. If I remember correctly...the bulk of the tax cuts for the wealthy were in the last 2 or 3 years of the plan. But isn't it interesting that our recent deficits are not caused by decreased revenues but by increased spending. Yet you've advocated increased spending. I share your frustration with "having nothing to show for it". I just don't think heaping on more debt is the answer...I firmly believe that it'll come back to us in the end and bite us in the butt...big time
Your words. In fact there are several other threads that a quick forum search reveals you wailing on deficit spending. Furthermore, the same search reveals you repeatedly slamming Democrats for not voting to repeal these "tax cuts" sooner!

So, why the change of heart? There is no way to extend these "tax cuts" without further ballooning the deficit. What spending offsets do you propose the federal government makes in order to afford these "tax cuts," which the first time around were around $1.3 trillion (and obviously would increase if they were made permanent)? Or, as your second quote indicates, would you just like the cuts extended for the middle class?

So yes, respectfully, I call you a hypocrite. I'm sure a similar search of my posts will reveal the same thing about me.
 
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Nov 30, 2006
15,456
389
121
Does this sound familiar?



Or this?


Your words. In fact there are several other threads that a quick forum search reveals you wailing on deficit spending. Furthermore, the same search reveals you repeatedly slamming Democrats for not voting to repeal these "tax cuts" sooner!

So, why the change of heart? There is no way to extend these "tax cuts" without further ballooning the deficit. What spending offsets do you propose the federal government makes in order to afford these "tax cuts," which the first time around were around $1.3 trillion (and obviously would increase if they were made permanent)? Or, as your second quote indicates, would you just like the cuts extended for the middle class?

So yes, respectfully, I call you a hypocrite. I'm sure a similar search of my posts will reveal the same thing about me.
So...let me get this straight...by calling the expiration of the Bush tax cut a tax increase and objecting to deficit spending are somehow hypocritical?

Holy shit!

Let me be clear as possible here...I believe in fiscal responsibility. In light of this, I advocated tax increases (especially for the wealthy) as well as reduced spending. By letting the Bush tax cuts expire, it is effectively a very large tax increase for the middle class in the midst of severe economic times. To say this isn't a tax increase (as you have) is ludicrous...and pure bullshit. I'm not saying taxes shouldn't be increased...I'm saying the timing is bad for the middle class to take the full blow and believe the impact should be mitigated.

In regards to deficit spending, I've always been against the $787 billion stimulus package. I've never said "the things in the stimulus bill aren't tax cuts" as you stated (nor said that they are tax cuts for that matter). Perhaps you found that actual facts are of little importance when contrasted with your zeal to call me out for being a hypocrite.

You've obviously went to a lot of work to 'prove' my hypocrisy. Please know that I've no desire to prove yours.
 

Fern

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 30, 2003
26,907
173
106
Fern

What specifically is this "loophole" you refer to.
Here's a link about it:

http://www.ctj.org/pdf/privateequity071907.pdf

Basically, There are 2 broad categories of income - personal services and investment income.

Personal services type is pretty self explanatory. If we perform actual 'work' like being an employee or a contractor doing construction we spend time doing a particular service to earn our money. I.e., working for a living means being taxed at regular rates and SS tax.

Investment income is getting dividends on our money invested in stocks, or interest or capital gains or rents from real estate. So wealth trust funds types can get away with just paying investment type taxes and no SS.

However, if all I do is own a bunch of rental real estate and spend all my working hours managing that, I'm not investing, I'm actually working and my profits rise to level of personal services. Therefor, I pay normal income tax rates like someone who employed or self-employed, plus social security tax (which not charged on investment typ income).

Similarly, people who do stock market trades and spend all their working hours on it are not generally considered "investors" but actually working and the income from it considered 'personal services' income and they pay regular tax rates and SS tax.

So, under the 'normal' tax rules Buffet and his fellow fund managers should be taxed at regular rates and even pay SS tax. However, Congress made a special rule for them so all their income from managing the fund is 'considered' LT capital gains and so taxed at 15% (and no SS tax applies).

What makes this treatment particularly eggregious is that unlike investors fund managers have no 'risk'. If their fund loses money they don't, they still get paid. So how, in addition to the other rules, can they make LT capital gains when their fund losses money is an absurdity.

If you or I spent all day doing stock market trades we would NOT get the 15% capital gains rate (and no SS tax) but these big time fund managers are excepted because Congress gave them special rules.

Fern
 

Darwin333

Lifer
Dec 11, 2006
19,946
2,325
126
I love the way you spin this as not a tax increase....and the amazing part is you actually believe it!
I would argue that if that is indeed the case, the reverse must be true. For example, the stimulus bill was "an advance" and therefore it was a tax increase. The only debatable point is when is the "bill due".

Of course the reality is that the tax increases will not be spent on the "bill" so, imho, the point is moot. I think that if we had reasonable politicians who passed 4th grade math that a tax increase is definitely necessary but unfortunately we don't. Since they will never act in a fiscally responsible fashion over any significant amount of time I have finally come to the conclusion that we should just say "fuck it". Borrow as much as we can if the fools are dumb enough to loan it to us and hopefully spend at least some of it on actual investments (like infrastructure improvements) that will be around long after we tell our creditors to get bent. Of course the flip side to that inevitable conclusion is that after we tell them to get bent we must immediately start living within our means.
 

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