Conservatives can whine all they want about the fiscal cliff. What if tax rates went up all of 3% on the richest people in the world? Dear Buddha! Given how high income taxes are already, I assume America would be promptly destroyed.
But the truth? HIGH TAXES DON”T EXIST IN AMERICA. If anyone says anything other than that, they’re either misinformed or lying. Probably both. Watch:
Tax Burden for Most Americans Is Lower Than in the 1980s
New York Times | BINYAMIN APPELBAUM and ROBERT GEBELOFF
. . in fact, most Americans in 2010 paid far less in total taxes — federal, state and local — than they would have paid 30 years ago. According to an analysis by The New York Times, the combination of all income taxes, sales taxes and property taxes took a smaller share of their income than it took from households with the same inflation-adjusted income in 1980.
It’s true. Republicans have been obsessed with tax-cutting for those 30 years and so the tax code reflects it. You’d have to go back to the twenties, I’d bet, to see taxes on Americans this low. Not that the actual truth matters — you can never cut taxes enough for conservatives to be happy. This is the only truth that matters, and this is a behavior that must be protected at all costs.
Here comes Bryan Preston to do his part:
The New York Times Isn’t Called the Old Grey Liar for Nothing
PJ TATLER | November 30, 2012
. . The Times then pulls some hacky sleight of hand that will only fool liberals, using 1980 as its banner year. The obvious implication is that the current economy could do with higher taxes, which just happens to be the Democratic Party’s position in the fiscal cliff negotiations. The other obvious implication is that if higher tax rates were good enough for the man most identified with 1980, Ronald Reagan, well then they should be good enough for John Boehner et al.
The obvious problem with the Times’ second obvious implication: Those high 1980 tax rates and their drag on the economy helped elect Reagan. He started cutting taxes after his inauguration, which was in 1981. And the economy grew enormously. That growth undercuts the Times’ first implication.
Preston: Nice try liberals. It was after 1980 that Reagan slashed taxes and the economy boomed. Like you have the guts of Ronald Reagan, losers. Game, set, screw you. And here comes Romney’s economics adviser, Greg Mankiw of Harvard, to second that:
Over my coffee this morning, I read the following headline on the front page of The New York Times: “Complaints Aside, Most Face Lower Tax Burden Than in the Reagan ’80s.” Below it was a graphic comparing average tax rates for various income groups in 1980 and 2010.
The problem is that Reagan did not become president until January 1981, and his tax policy was not fully implemented until a couple of years later (and arguably not until his second term, when we got very significant tax reform). So the headline should have read, “Complaints Aside, Most Face Lower Tax Burden Than in Carter’s 1980.” That makes the story very different, as 1980 was the year the incumbent Carter was defeated by the challenger Reagan, who was proposing significant tax reduction as a key part of his campaign.
You will notice that neither one of them bothers with numbers to back up their claims. Considering how enamored with facts and numbers the Romney clan were, are you surprised? The truth is that Reagan can’t hold a candle to Barack “Tax Slasher” Obama. Using the wingnuts’ own taxfoundation.org breakdown of historical tax brackets relative to income (in inflation-adjusted dollars, of course), here are the tax facts:
Reagan’s income tax rates from 1983 or 1987 can’t touch Obama’s today. Once you factor in payroll tax rates (Social Security and Medicare), it gets even WORSE:
If Reagan is their tax-killing hero, what is Barack Obama? Jumpin’ GOP Christ? Except for one measly year (1988, where the rate for millionaires and billionaires bottomed out at 28%[!]), Ronnie can’t compare to Obama and that’s that. Period. Considering the chronically miserable fiscal state we’ve been in, this should end forever any argument that low taxes do the economy much, if any, good.