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Discussion Starter #1
Obama's grand plan to re-distribute wealth amongst the masses described in detail.
If this guy gets elected and this type of tax "change" happens, it's going to hurt right in the pocket, as usual.
Ken
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122385651698727257.html

  • OCTOBER 13, 2008
Obama's 95% Illusion

It depends on what the meaning of 'tax cut' is.

  • Obama's most potent campaign claims is that he'll cut taxes for no less than 95% of "working families." He's even promising to cut taxes enough that the government's tax share of GDP will be no more than 18.2% -- which is lower than it is today.
AP

It's a clever pitch, because it lets him pose as a middle-class tax cutter while disguising that he's also proposing one of the largest tax increases ever on the other 5%. But how does he conjure this miracle, especially since more than a third of all Americans already pay no income taxes at all? There are several sleights of hand, but the most creative is to redefine the meaning of "tax cut."
For the Obama Democrats, a tax cut is no longer letting you keep more of what you earn. In their lexicon, a tax cut includes tens of billions of dollars in government handouts that are disguised by the phrase "tax credit." Mr. Obama is proposing to create or expand no fewer than seven such credits for individuals:


- A $500 tax credit ($1,000 a couple) to "make work pay" that phases out at income of $75,000 for individuals and $150,000 per couple.
- A $4,000 tax credit for college tuition.
- A 10% mortgage interest tax credit (on top of the existing mortgage interest deduction and other housing subsidies).
- A "savings" tax credit of 50% up to $1,000.
- An expansion of the earned-income tax credit that would allow single workers to receive as much as $555 a year, up from $175 now, and give these workers up to $1,110 if they are paying child support.
- A child care credit of 50% up to $6,000 of expenses a year.
- A "clean car" tax credit of up to $7,000 on the purchase of certain vehicles.
Here's the political catch. All but the clean car credit would be "refundable," which is Washington-speak for the fact that you can receive these checks even if you have no income-tax liability. In other words, they are an income transfer -- a federal check -- from taxpayers to nontaxpayers. Once upon a time we called this "welfare," or in George McGovern's 1972 campaign a "Demogrant." Mr. Obama's genius is to call it a tax cut.
The Tax Foundation estimates that under the Obama plan 63 million Americans, or 44% of all tax filers, would have no income tax liability and most of those would get a check from the IRS each year. The Heritage Foundation's Center for Data Analysis estimates that by 2011, under the Obama plan, an additional 10 million filers would pay zero taxes while cashing checks from the IRS.
The total annual expenditures on refundable "tax credits" would rise over the next 10 years by $647 billion to $1.054 trillion, according to the Tax Policy Center. This means that the tax-credit welfare state would soon cost four times actual cash welfare. By redefining such income payments as "tax credits," the Obama campaign also redefines them away as a tax share of GDP. Presto, the federal tax burden looks much smaller than it really is.
The political left defends "refundability" on grounds that these payments help to offset the payroll tax. And that was at least plausible when the only major refundable credit was the earned-income tax credit. Taken together, however, these tax credit payments would exceed payroll levies for most low-income workers.
It is also true that John McCain proposes a refundable tax credit -- his $5,000 to help individuals buy health insurance. We've written before that we prefer a tax deduction for individual health care, rather than a credit. But the big difference with Mr. Obama is that Mr. McCain's proposal replaces the tax subsidy for employer-sponsored health insurance that individuals don't now receive if they buy on their own. It merely changes the nature of the tax subsidy; it doesn't create a new one.
There's another catch: Because Mr. Obama's tax credits are phased out as incomes rise, they impose a huge "marginal" tax rate increase on low-income workers. The marginal tax rate refers to the rate on the next dollar of income earned. As the nearby chart illustrates, the marginal rate for millions of low- and middle-income workers would spike as they earn more income.
Some families with an income of $40,000 could lose up to 40 cents in vanishing credits for every additional dollar earned from working overtime or taking a new job. As public policy, this is contradictory. The tax credits are sold in the name of "making work pay," but in practice they can be a disincentive to working harder, especially if you're a lower-income couple getting raises of $1,000 or $2,000 a year. One mystery -- among many -- of the McCain campaign is why it has allowed Mr. Obama's 95% illusion to go unanswered.
 

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Looks like a good deal to me. I like how that graph shows a big scary tax diparity in current tax law and the Obama proposal. Note that is for a married couple who as a child in daycare and one in college.

Who has childern 13 to 22 years apart?

You should feel damn lucky we are even talking about a reduction in taxes while sitting on the largest deficit in the history of our country while fighting two wars (Iraq and Afganistan) and at the same time giving billions to the finacial industry with more to come.

Remeber the Wall Street Journal is of Wall Street, the same Wall Street that put us in our finacial crisis. The WSJ is a business paper looking out for business interests and not the interests of the working class.
 

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He is the worst thing that can happen to this country and not just for his bogus tax cuts.

McCain isn't my favorite candidate either. I almost wish we had someone else to choose from but I'm not sure that would make a difference.

As polictics go today... more often than not... you no longer vote for the best candidate available...you vote for the lesser of two evils.
 

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He is the worst thing that can happen to this country and not just for his bogus tax cuts.

McCain isn't my favorite candidate either. I almost wish we had someone else to choose from but I'm not sure that would make a difference.

As polictics go today... more often than not... you no longer vote for the best candidate available...you vote for the lesser of two evils.
Ralph Nader and Ron Paul are both running. Why don't you vote for them?
 

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They're the same guy. They're both just playing games with your money/life and not really changing anything. It's more of the same. But you have a choice... do you vote "yes" or "yes"?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
He is the worst thing that can happen to this country and not just for his bogus tax cuts.

McCain isn't my favorite candidate either. I almost wish we had someone else to choose from but I'm not sure that would make a difference.

As polictics go today... more often than not... you no longer vote for the best candidate available...you vote for the lesser of two evils.
As I recall, more than one election left us with that same dliema. Sucks that its the best either party can do, over and over again.
Ken
 

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Looks like a good deal to me.
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Remeber the Wall Street Journal is of Wall Street, the same Wall Street that put us in our finacial crisis. The WSJ is a business paper looking out for business interests and not the interests of the working class.
The WSJ is probably the best source of real information out there. It's not all "business and banking". Business interests are interests of the working class...... unless you're like most and too busy watching "Dancing With the Stars". To be honest, i think if peoples net worth, including salary, housing, and investments, were growing at strong double digit growth, they could care less what country we were engaged in militarily.

I enjoy it when people like the opinion writer in the WSJ breaks it down like he did. Eliminating the smoke and mirrors that so often accompanies political rhetoric.

He's a master of the redistribution of wealth principle, yet still takes tax deductions himself. I cannot understand that.
 

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Go McCain in 2000! Oh wait, hes eight years to late. Still would rather see him than Obama. And is it me or have Obama AND Kerry not directly answered questions people give them on debates? They give a sentance or two then go off on some tangent. I remember from the last debate that some lady asked Obama what he would be sacrificing and what he would ask the american people to sacrifice, he started talking about dependance on foreign oil and energy. WTF? Then McCain came in and actually called him out on it, "I'll answer your question" haha. I look forward to tonight, watch for the nonanswers from Obama.
 

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FYI you can't vote for Ron Paul in some states - thus making him a non-candidate (see VA)
You can vote for any candidate in any state, they may not be on the ballot and you may have to "write in" but you can and should vote for them.

The reason you should is that if you like a "third" party (Green, Libertarian, Constitution, Social Workers, Communist, etc.) you need to cast a vote for that party (even if you dont like the candidate) without the intention to win that years election, its more of a long term goal. If a solid quardinated effort is made and 5-25% (but you only need 5) of the natinal vote is tallied for that party it will be eligable for "minor party" public campain dollars in the next election. I am not sure how that would work in the case of a declared independent, they may be eligable for "new party" funds.

Another long tem effect of voting "third" party is that it will change the stance of the major partys. If a more liberal or mor conservitive "third" party is taking a noticable percentage of votes the the major party will change to persue those voters. This also perpetuates the "two party system". That voter may also become more satisfied with one of the big two and go back to them but if they really want a change they will vote their conscious.
 

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You can vote for any candidate in any state, they may not be on the ballot and you may have to "write in" but you can and should vote for them.

The reason you should is that if you like a "third" party (Green, Libertarian, Constitution, Social Workers, Communist, etc.) you need to cast a vote for that party (even if you dont like the candidate) without the intention to win that years election, its more of a long term goal. If a solid quardinated effort is made and 5-25% (but you only need 5) of the natinal vote is tallied for that party it will be eligable for "minor party" public campain dollars in the next election. I am not sure how that would work in the case of a declared independent, they may be eligable for "new party" funds.

Another long tem effect of voting "third" party is that it will change the stance of the major partys. If a more liberal or mor conservitive "third" party is taking a noticable percentage of votes the the major party will change to persue those voters. This also perpetuates the "two party system". That voter may also become more satisfied with one of the big two and go back to them but if they really want a change they will vote their conscious.
Actually, if you "write in" Ron Paul in VA your vote will be thrown in the trash. It won't be counted any more than if you wrote in Mickey Mouse, Shaggy, or your grand mother. You have to be on the "approved list of write ins" - which is a fancy way to say you have to be on the ballot, but not listed by name. VA is not the only state to do this.

Don't believe the hype. You don't have a choice. They don't count your vote even when the guy you want to vote for is countable. They have electorial votes to make sure you don't make the wrong choice. Well... if you had a choice in the first place.
 

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Actually, if you "write in" Ron Paul in VA your vote will be thrown in the trash. It won't be counted any more than if you wrote in Mickey Mouse, Shaggy, or your grand mother. You have to be on the "approved list of write ins" - which is a fancy way to say you have to be on the ballot, but not listed by name. VA is not the only state to do this.

Don't believe the hype. You don't have a choice. They don't count your vote even when the guy you want to vote for is countable. They have electorial votes to make sure you don't make the wrong choice. Well... if you had a choice in the first place.
Nader and Paul should be on the approved list of "write-ins", and should be counted. It is different from state to state.

This is total Bullshit and another reason it is so hard to get a "third party" off the ground. They end up wasting all their time and resources fighting for something as simple as ballot recognition. I think when voting for president all states should have the same list of candidates on the ballot.

I alway hear on the news about candidates trying to get on the ballot in such and such state or a campaign trying to get someone taken off, I hate that.

I live in Minnesota, Ive never missed an election and every four years Im suprised how many candidates there are. Some of these candidates and partys Ive never heard of.
 

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They shouldn't have the list. They should just count every vote. Why complicate things? Hell, take the names off the ballot completely - write in a name. Count them all up and see who wins. Then report on names... down to the vote. The technology is there to make it simple. But they don't. Why? because Mikey Mouse would likely win the election. Then what could the electorial college tell you when they put their buddy in office?

Obama=McCain=more of the same=not democracy
 

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You can vote for any candidate in any state, they may not be on the ballot and you may have to "write in" but you can and should vote for them.

The reason you should is that if you like a "third" party (Green, Libertarian, Constitution, Social Workers, Communist, etc.) you need to cast a vote for that party (even if you dont like the candidate) without the intention to win that years election, its more of a long term goal. If a solid quardinated effort is made and 5-25% (but you only need 5) of the natinal vote is tallied for that party it will be eligable for "minor party" public campain dollars in the next election. I am not sure how that would work in the case of a declared independent, they may be eligable for "new party" funds.

Another long tem effect of voting "third" party is that it will change the stance of the major partys. If a more liberal or mor conservitive "third" party is taking a noticable percentage of votes the the major party will change to persue those voters. This also perpetuates the "two party system". That voter may also become more satisfied with one of the big two and go back to them but if they really want a change they will vote their conscious.
:iagree:

I have been telling every person that tells me they don't like either to vote for someone they do regardless for the reasons you have listed
 

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Why bother? After your non-counting vote is cast, it's litterally thrown in the trash. Nothing will change no matter who gets your "vote".
 

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One mystery -- among many -- of the McCain campaign is why it has allowed Mr. Obama's 95% illusion to go unanswered.
No mystery here.. Why should either of them cloud the issues with actual facts and ideas.. It would totally alienate the ignorant.. Sad but true..
 

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Why bother? After your non-counting vote is cast, it's litterally thrown in the trash. Nothing will change no matter who gets your "vote".
I guess I am still young and stupid and think that there is hope for change
 

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To say that the WSJ represents the working class or is the closest thing to the truth is outrageous. Although it is a reliable source for general business information, it's editing clearly places the benefits of main street in the hands of wall street. In other words, it puts institutions before individuals. It sounds subtle but it's a very important distinction.

The best single editorial regarding taxes was several years ago in Newsweek. Essentially, since the mid 50's, the goverment has taken 20% of GDP in tax revenue. Who pays those taxes, the tax burden, has been dramatically shifted onto wage earners and families over the past 30yrs. There has not been a tax cut, but a redistribution of the tax burden.

Economics is referred to as the dismal science. With that in mind, I beg for anyone to show that lowering capital gains taxes has fulfilled the promise of increasing revenue to the federal gov't (from capital gains). Laffer made a very good point but failed to consider that people don't increase their discretionary spending based upon tax rates as much as inherent need for income. Also, show me a time in which a tax law change has stimulated the economy. It turns out to be a popular myth put forth by those that have much more to gain by that myth than you and I (The treasury Secretary under Reagan referred to Supply Side Economics as a trojan horse for tax cuts for the rich). GDP growth has been shown to be largely independent of tax law and is far more deterministic than stochastic ( we are not outpacing any other nation in GDP growth, in fact we are lagging). That doesn't keep pundits from screaming the benefits of tax cuts to the economy. They're no smarter than you and I. Combined with loose monetary policy and unregulated leverage on wall street, we end up with assett price inflation, a bubble. Pop!! we lose!!! Wall street gains. They make money on the comissions, not the investment. Real returns on the S&P 500 for the last 12 yrs is negative BEFORE factoring inflation!

Increases in revenue have always come from increases in middle income taxes, especially FICA taxes. That's also a re-distribution of income. By favoring passive income over wage income ( Taxes on my last dollar earned equals 43%, taxes on income from stock options structured as capital gains is 15%, 7.5% if you vote for McCain) you are essentially promoting the concentration of wealth. There has been a silent redistribution of wealth going on for thirty years. How does the government measure wealth vs income? Median family income has risen by LESS than 1% per year compounded for the past 25yrs. The top 10% of the worlds wealthy have more than doubled their share of the worlds wealth in that same time period.

Don't take my word for it, look it up.
How did the tax changes effect you? Your marginal rate, your FICA obligation, family credits, etc...?

How much do you make in capital gains? How do they effect you, your 401k, pension, ect..? (Tax deferred income is not effected by capital gains taxes, you will be taxed at your income rate in the future.)

If you don't pay the taxes, who does? Vice versa... If i do pay the taxes, who doesn't?

Which is fair, taxing the people or taxing economic activity? Why?

Don't trust everything you read but also be open to the answers when you find them.
 

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I entirely forgot to include the need for taxes... to cover expenses. I consider myself fiscally conservative and the last eight years have been an embarassment. Neither party is guiltless but considering that the republicans controlled both houses and the executive, that they had a chance to prove their conservative ways, they've proven that they have less self control than the Dems ever have. The government is a trough of money, who you vote for decides who feeds at that trough.

Whoever gets into office MUST increase taxes. This level of deficit will wreak havoc on our economy. We crossed 10 TRILLION dollars in debt during the last debate. Ironic?

It's time for some belt tightening. I don't mind paying taxes, I like indoor plumbing, highways, and the police. I'm pissed that I pay a higher rate than the wealthy. Which, again, promotes the concentration of wealth.

Warren Buffett has a Million dollar challenge to the Forbes 400 wealthiest. If any one of them can show that they pay a higher tax rate than their secretary, they get the million bucks. One year later, no takers. Maybe I'm really just pissed that I dont have the control to structure my income in a more tax favorable way.
 
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