What a day! Pigs are flying and Hell has frozen over.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/11/13/trump-administration-shows-just-how-clueless-it-is-about-middle-class/#comments-wrapper

Henry Olsen actually gets something right. Why indeed is Larry Kudlow promoting a 15% income tax rate for “the middle class” when, in fact, the middle class already pays less? The 15% tax bracket doesn’t even begin until $80K taxable income – with the standard deduction @ $25K, this means Americans already don’t pay 15% until they hit $105K of income. This is nearly 50% more than the median income in the U.S.

As Olsen says, potentially this could make my brother in MA and cousin in NY very happy, as they got less than $200 in a tax cut due to the SALT limitation that screwed successful states. But this does nothing for the vast majority of Americans and is unlikely to change the anti-Trump votes of those who would benefit. To say nothing of the fact that it will blow up the deficit even higher.

Once again, a poorly conceived tax bill from an incompetent administration. We’re still trying to fix the many errors and unintended consequences from their last bill. I don’t want higher taxes, and especially think a wealth tax is a poor and stupid excuse that addresses a symptom and not the cause. But this tax bill would do nothing but make the problem worse.

I often hear the right screaming about socialism, how we’re going to be the next Venezuela under Democrats. No, we’re going to be the next Japan, thanks to the Republicans. A debt to GDP of 236%, limited immigration and ignorant nationalism despite a labor shortage, a birth rate of 1.4, with an elderly population headed towards 33% of the population. Middle class Japanese working 80 hours a week, but getting nowhere due to low growth and rising real estate and stock market prices that only benefit the 1%. A supposed democracy reduced to a de facto oligarchy in which a few keiretsu leaders effectively control the country.

12 thoughts on “What a day! Pigs are flying and Hell has frozen over.

  1. The saddest part about this out of touch (OK stupid) proposal is that the trump “base” will give their vote to him and tout the tax cut that only helps the top 20%…

    “May I have another, sir”….

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Picked one at random.

      HUD director Ben Carson found more than $500 billion in accounting errors at the federal agency.
      Rating
      Mostly False
      About this rating

      What’s True

      Accounting errors found by HUD’s Office of the Inspector General in 2015 and 2016 financial statements totaled more than $500 billion.

      What’s False

      The audit was initiated before Ben Carson assumed his position at HUD, and it reckons an aggregate figure of accounting errors and not an actual recovery of $500 billion in funds.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Of course there’s a lot of cherry picking and exaggeration on that list, but it’s no more inaccurate than claims that Trump has done nothing for the middle class.

        The tax cuts were never meant to deliver cash directly to the middle class, their purpose was to create a labor shortage and drive middle class and low end wages upward, and they did, increasing median income significantly for the first time in 2 decades.

        But with enough cherry picking you can make people believe a lot.

        Like

          1. Answering exaggeration with exaggeration.

            Trump has his faults, but he also has solid accomplishments.

            Remember that Obama admitted our corporate tax was toxically high, he just didn’t do anything about it. He told us that decline was inevitable and low to negative GDP growth was the new normal.

            Trump brought optimism back, and that is just as important as the jobs and wage growth.

            Liked by 2 people

  2. What could be expected from a tax “reform” bill created over a couple of weeks by a handful of Republicans in a locked room that needed a secret handshake and password to get in?

    There was little reform. The multinationals that were paying next to zero tax anyway just got an extra windfall for stock buybacks to enrich the execs. Some one time bonuses for the employees and a few bucks a week off the tax bill. Actual business investments have been a bit scarce.

    Loopholes closed? Get real. Well, they did manage to screw the wealthy blue states with a cut in SALT deduction cuts. Nice touch since those same states are funding Trump red states.

    Fortunately the longest running employment gains started in 2010 continued along the same path. Unfortunately the GDP growth is still below Obama’s best years and looks to be stagnating at or below 2%.

    And, as predicted, we have a trillion dollar deficit this fiscal year along with a debt bumped to 22 trillion.

    Bottom line is that a lot of very wealthy folks are laughing all the way to the bank with our children’s and grandchildren’s money.

    Cool. A nice ROI for GOP campaign donations.

    The rest of us got “skeee-ruude”.

    IMHO

    Liked by 5 people

    1. @ Don

      Obama did send a plan to Congress to lower corporate taxes. The GOP would not even bring it up. I mean they could have tried to work a deal but that might’ve given Obama a win. Couldn’t do that now, could we?

      https://www.crfb.org/blogs/president-obamas-corporate-tax-reform-plan

      Trump didn’t offer dog poop of a plan. The GOP came up with one that was a freakin’ mess, but did cut the corporate tax to 21% and has led to a massive return to recession deficits and debt increases.

      So please, saying Obama didn’t try to do something about the corporate tax is, ah, hmmm, at variance with the truth. Or in today’s parlance favored by conservatives, “alternative facts”.

      IMHO

      Liked by 4 people

      1. I’m tempted to offer another snarky oopsey on the flimsy defenses of trumps “accomplishments”.

        I’ll simply note that when it comes to virtually every aspect of policy making trump has demonstrated a singular skill:

        Try whatever jumped into my pea brain this morning; take credit for what “looks” like it’s working and blame others for anything that fails.

        Rinse, repeat….

        Liked by 3 people

  3. I know it’s a tad off topic, but back in 2012 when Romney ran for office, his financial disclosures showed that he had some $50 million in his IRA, an amazing feat considering the limitations on the IRA and 401(k) contributions.

    At the time, it was shown how he COULD have done it legally using a loophole on private assets (his Bain shares) by devaluing them and putting them into the IRA at nearly zero value. I had a friend who did the same thing with his company, and he also used the IRA loan interest to pump his balance beyond belief in the late 1980s. Those loopholes were closed before/when the Roth IRA was introduced.

    Where am I going with this? IF he did use the pre-Roth loopholes, that means he used a Traditional IRA to do this.

    Want to have some fun? Find an RMD calculator online (Schwab’s wil do) and use a (estimated now) $100 million Traditional IRA balance for a man 70 years old.

    I wonder if he realized the long term tax effect? I hope I’m right.

    Liked by 1 person

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