On Paul Ryan’s libertarian Disneyland.
It's not just that his plan reduces the deficit slowly. The tax cuts are definite, but the supposed revenue to make up for them comes largely from closing tax loopholes that he doesn't specify, and can't possibly make up the difference given that he's taken the biggest (and most popular) ones off the table in interviews. It would be just as budget-busting as the Bush cuts.
I missed the words serious, brave, smart, and wonk in the article, Joe. Is Stengel on vacation?
Good on you, Joe.
In some of his proposals, Ryan has replaced the capital gains tax with a sales tax, or VAT, which would have the perverse effect of raising taxes on the middle class and poor while lowering them for the rich."
Well not exactly. As a matter of fact Romney and Ryan are against a VAT or National Sales tax.
Not that I agree with Stockton on all of his critique of Ryan, at least he is honest and understands what Romney and Ryan are proposing.
The unfortunate thing about someone like Joe Klein, a member of the elitist group in America (the 1%) is that he is ok with redistribution of wealth through taxes as long as he can keep the lion share of his massive income.
But those in the middle class, who get up at dawn everyday and go to a job to make 30, 40, 50, 60,000 dollars are hit continually with the taxes that pay for someone like Joe to sit in his elitist ivory tower to tell the peasants to work harder, work more hours so you can pay more taxes.
Those taxes also relieve an elitist like Klein from worrying about charitable contributions. He figures he pays his taxes and the government will take care of all those poor, little people. But the problem lies in the fact as you expand the government entitlement (charity) programs to more and more people, eventually there isn't enough money. Soon that big government becomes too big to satisfy it's insatiable diet of tax dollars.
So when Joe begins to advocate for his taxes as one of the elitists in this country for his own taxes to be raised to 80 or 90% of his income without any special deductions, then I will become a liberal. Until then, I will just know that Joe Klein is just another elitist playing the game, but from the other party.
Did you even read the column, liberallies? Ryan would raise taxes on those making $30-60,000 a year by imposing a sales tax. He would ELIMINATE taxes on those, like Romney, who make their money through capital gains and dividend interest. There is zero, zilch, less-than-nothing actual evidence that indicates that eliminating those taxes on the wealthy will cause them to invent in job creation as opposed to, say, dressage horses.
There is also no evidence that keeping a tax system in place where roughly 50% of Americans pay no tax whatsoever will reduce the incidence of the inappropriate behavior you discuss in your article - "out-of-wedlock births, dropping out of school, crime and drugs" - nor will it cause those who tax status is maintained, the "middle class " of which everyone is so fond of speaking this election cycle, from buying products with positive multiplier effects as opposed to imported large screen TV sets and, unfortunately, "imported" drugs. There is "zero, zilch, less-than-nothing actual evidence" that investment in government, no matter how well intentioned, has any meaningful impact on the middle class. The sole improvements in the macro-economy in the last 35 years have come from (a) forced belt-tightening by the Fed in the early 1980s, which when combined with the "feel-good" leadership of Reagan had a generally positive knock-on effect for the mid-to-late 1980s and thereafter, and (b) the economic benefits driven from Internet and mobile telecom investments of the 1990's and since, which has had positive impacts both bottom-up AND top-down. Other than these two actions, most of the positive movement in the economy has been either sectoral (health-care, oilamp;gas), or local geographic (the revival of NYC after the crime crack-down of the 80s and 90s, for example).
Actions (both income-related, in terms of tax, and expenditure-related) taken to help EITHER the upper income classes OR the middle classes, realistically, have very little impact on the economic success or failure of this country. This is where both Keynes and Friedman were (and remain) both wrong. They garner votes, which is why different parties cling to different philosophies. And they sometimes have short-term impacts, perhaps long enough to carry through to a second election cycle. But ultimately the SOLE THING that impacts the economic viability and sustainability of this, or any, country is the ability of its populace to balance optimism and conservation. And this can be done by leadership more than by legislation. Regardless of political party.
"He would ELIMINATE taxes on those, like Romney, who make their money through capital gains and dividend interest."
More to his "point," Romney/Ryan would further reduce the top marginal tax rate on "elitists" like you to Gilded Age tax rates. But, as you must be aware, he's a raving, paranoid, brainwashed loon. Your attention would be better spent engaging the rational, liberal critiques on this blog, if you can.
Nice to see Joe that you actually read some of our ravings and care enough to respond. Now many of us are waiting to see if you will be the first person in the MSM to regularly use the words "Romney" and "Ryan" and "liar" in the same sentence.
More facts for Joe Klein:
The current tax code is 70,000 pages. It costs American 160 BILLION dollars a year to just file their taxes because the majority of American have to use a professional tax preparer or one of the tax programs like Turbo Tax. (However as we know, people like Treasury Secretary Geithner cheat) In the past ten years Congress under both Republican and Democrat control have made 4,400 changes to the code, mainly for preferences, deductions or exclusions. That's is more than 1 TRILLION per year in taxes NOT paid into the Federal Government. Most of that going to the very rich. P 59 Path to Prosperity.
Those who benefit the most from those tax exclusions, preferences, or deductions are the top 1%, people like Joe Klein, at nearly $250,000 dollars in savings each tax year. The next group, the "Top 20%" save close to 45,000 dollars every tax season and then it falls off for the rest of us who see very little savings at all. P 60 Path to Prosperity.
We have seen all of this before, and it is not a new thing with the tax code. Ronald Reagan came into office and found we had 16 different tax brackets with a top rate of 70 percent. In 1989 the tax code was simplified to just 3 brackets. P 66-67 Path to Prosperity.
No where to be found is Joe Klein's claim that Paul Ryan and the budget passed by the House in the Path to Prosperity contain a VAT or National Sales Tax. Why is that Joe? You clearly said that it does in your "Latest Column".
So far as spending is concerned, common sense tells us that revenue is not a problem in this country. Our government takes in over 3 trillion in revenue from taxes and other government charges, but only about 1.75 trillion is from actual revenue. The rest is made up with BORROWING. That borrowing is what makes up our deficits each and every year.
This video will give a great explanation of where our money comes from as well as where it is spent.
However, if you are a working American, someone that is a contributor and not a taker, you may get very angry and upset. If you are someone who benefits from the entitlement programs set up mainly by Liberals, then you are very happy, and want the "vote pump" to continue.
Benjamin Franklin warned us all so long ago. He said
"When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic."
Thanks Joe, but LL reads little and comprehends less. Hint: if you're offended reading the username, then reading the post is probably a waste of your time.
Glad to see you paticipating, Joe.
LL is known to Swampland regulars as the resident of a fact-free zone in which everything associated with Barack Obama is unadulterated evil and Republicans are the last, best hope of civilization. We've actually undertaken a campaign to stop responding to him, in the hope that he might stop being so annoying if he gets no reinforcement. I doubt that your pointed and accurate rebuttal will have much if any influence on him, but it does show that you have him pegged.
Well, well, well. As you can see from my rebuttal to Joe Klein, I not only use facts, I also use referenced sources to back up my claims.
Joe Klein does not. But that is not unusual. Liberals bloviate.
Anyone can check out my comments I most always 99.9% of the time cite my sources. You may disagree with them, but they are sourced.
Again when you want to debate, with facts and sources, and leave the 3rd grade name calling at home with your babysitter. Come and talk to me.
So this is the reason that republican party candidate is going to raise the taxes and gut social programs for those making 30, 40, 50, 60 thousand a year to give those making 250 thousand and above a substantial tax break?
You have seriously been duped!
Bravissimo, Joe! You could perhaps have nailed Ryan even harder, but at least you nailed him. Well done.
Say it over and over again -- The man is a fraud, and his "plan" is a scam. That Mitt Romney would attempt to force on the American people this man's loony but dangerous ideas is reason enough why nobody should vote for them.
During one of my first dates when I was a Freshman in college read me "Ode to a Coy Mistress". I was young and naive but figured out the seduction scam immediately. That was my feeling when I read "Atlas Shrugs".
I also come in praise of this column. Glad to see there's at least one political writer who doesn't regurgitate the nonsense that Ryan's philosophy is somehow deep or -- the favorite Beltway word -- "serious."
As the old joke goes, “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs."
Of course the teenage Ryan was quick to embrace a philosophy that said it was noble to protect his inherited wealth in a selfish manner that punishes the poor. But it's a vile and immoral philosophy that most adolescents outgrow. That Ryan didn't is a mark of his emotional and intellectual immaturity.
Often I have had an issue with Joe's Third Way centrism, but I'll be the first one to say "good job" and pat him on the back. Ryan may be thought a "thinker" by some in the MSM, and in comparison to the GOP hicks in Congress, it may be apt. In the real world he is a huckster, fraud, and a crackpot's acolyte. Both he and Willard are Midwest children of privilege. Anyone, I mean ANYONE, who works with their hands, or works an hourly wage , who votes for this crew needs a brain scan. My heart sank the other day when I saw those grimy Ohio miners being used as campaign props as Willard stood in front of them in his crisp white shirt. The working class need to dummy up before they drag us all down. If Barack were white he would be 20 points up right now.