I still remember George H.W. Bush’s “Read my lips: no new taxes” promise that cost him his re-election bid against Bill Clinton. Clinton made hay out of the fact that Bush had promised not to raise taxes FOUR YEARS EARLIER, but eventually did (thanks to a Democrat-controlled Congress that ultimately forced him to do so, but why blame Democrats when there’s a Republican around?).
Promises are important, at least if they are made by Republicans. Democrats can apparently say anything they want, as far as the mainstream media is concerned.
Well, Obama is doing a whole lotta hedging recently. He’s already shifting on his promise, and he hasn’t even been elected yet. Not that the media is holding him to any of his promises.
The Obama campaign’s homepage still reads, “Obama said he wanted to give a tax break to all families making under $250,000 per year.” He’s been making big hay with that. During his second debate with John McCain, Obama said:
“If you make less than a quarter of a million dollars a year, you will not see a single dime of your taxes go up. If you make $200,000 a year or less, your taxes will go down.”
Obama has repeatedly said he’d give a tax cut to 95% of Americans (and the fact that 40% of that group who don’t pay federal income taxes would get a welfare check merely amounts to an inconvenient truth).
Byron York puts it this way:
Obama’s position in the past was that he would raise taxes on families making more than $250,000 a year and individuals making more than $200,000. But in his new ad, “Defining Moment,” he seems to lower it to $200,000 for families. “Here’s what I’ll do as president,” Obama says in the ad. “To deal with our current emergency I’ll launch a rescue plan for the middle class That begins with a tax cut for 95 percent of working Americans. If you have a job, pay taxes and make less than $200,000 a year, you’ll get a tax cut.” That seems kind of ambiguous, but the graphic on the screen says clearly: “Famlies making less than $200,000 get tax cut.”
And then Joe Biden almost immediately moves the goal post yet again:
“What we’re saying is that $87 billion tax break doesn’t need to go to people making an average of 1.4 million, it should go like it used to. It should go to middle class people — people making under $150,000 a year.”
All this even as facts begin to trickle out of a media machine that has not wanted you to know the truth about Obama.
According to the 2006 IRS statistics published by the National Taxpayers Union, “95 percent of working Americans” only includes those making less than $153,542 per year.
The Wall Street Journal crunches the numbers, and it turns out that Obama’s tax plan is like Captain Crunch, the cereal that tastes good to ignorant children, but is terrible for you when it actually gets into your system.
We suspect what’s going on here is more than Mr. Biden’s normal gift of gaffe. As with his admission that a President Obama would quickly be tested by our enemies, the Delaware rambler was stumbling into the truth. An Obama Administration couldn’t possibly pay for a tax cut for 95% of Americans by raising taxes on a mere 5%. Those 5% don’t make enough money, or at least they won’t after they find ways to shelter more of their income when their tax rates rise.
“$250,000. No. $200,000. No, wait, $150,000. Well, maybe it isn’t really $150,00, even though the numbers tell us we’re going to have to go after $150,000 in order to fund all the social spending programs we want.” You better remind yourself that Barack Obama voted to raise taxes on people making $42,000 a year. FactCheck put it this way:
Barack Obama Voted Twice In Favor Of The Democrats’ FY 2009 Budget Resolution That Would Raise Taxes On Those Making Just $42,000 A Year. (S. Con. Res. 70, CQ Vote #85: Adopted 51-44: R 2-43; D 47-1; I 2-0, 3/14/08, Obama Voted Yea; S. Con. Res. 70, CQ Vote #142: Adopted 48- 45: R 2- 44; D 44- 1; I 2-0, 6/4/08, Obama Voted Yea)
Democrats don’t have a very good record in even wanting tax cuts, much less at ever actually passing them.
I’ve got to put it this way: if you vote for Obama because you think he’s going to tax someone making more money than you and give it to you, I hope he raises your taxes. That would be plain, simple poetic justice. If you want someone else to pay more so you can have more stuff, it is only fitting that you should have to pay more so someone else can have your stuff.
There’s ALWAYS somebody with less. If you make $42,000 a year, shouldn’t you pay more so that someone who makes $20,000 a year can have a piece of the pie? And, if you make $20,000 a year, shouldn’t you pay more so that someone who doesn’t have a job have a piece of the pie?
Joe Biden earlier said:
Noting that wealthier Americans would indeed pay more, Biden said: “It’s time to be patriotic … time to jump in, time to be part of the deal, time to help get America out of the rut.”
The logic is that 5% of Americans should be patriotic and pay more in taxes, while the other 95% should be unpatriotic and pay less in taxes. Don’t believe that crap: Obama-Biden will give as many people as they possibly can the opportunity “to be patriotic.”
In Biden’s version of Obama’s “spread the wealth around” moment, Biden told ABC’s Good Morning America, “We want to take money and put it back in the pocket of middle-class people.” Or as Obama earlier called it, “reparative economic work,” and “redistributive change.”
To paraphrase the old garage-sale adage, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure”: One man’s middle class is another man’s rich. You may wake up and find out that you’ve just been classified as “rich.” And God help you then, because the Democrats in total control of the government sure won’t.
Obama once put it this way:
“…the African-American community, uh, are doing as bad, if not worse, and recognizing that my fate remained tied up with their fates, that, uh, that my individual salvation, uh, is not going to come about without a collective salvation for the country. Um, Unfortunately, I think that recognition, uh, requires that we make sacrifices, and this country has not always been willing to make the sacrifices necessary to bring about a new day and the new age.”
But if you vote for Obama, “a new day and the new age” is coming. Like it or not, you are voting “that we make sacrifices.” You just may not know it yet.
I could end here (on that nice poetic flourish of Obama’s), but I have a little more to say. Let me introduce The New York Sun’s editorial from April 18, 2008:
The big television networks take a lot of abuse for their supposed left-wing slant, but for a few moments in yesterday’s presidential debate on ABC News, anchorman Charles Gibson sounded like a charter member of the Club for Growth or Americans for Tax Reform. It came when Mr. Gibson questioned Senator Obama about the capital gains tax. Mr. Gibson quoted Mr. Obama as talking about raising the tax to 28% from 15%. “But actually, Bill Clinton, in 1997, signed legislation that dropped the capital gains tax to 20 percent,” Mr. Gibson said. “And George Bush has taken it down to 15 percent. And in each instance, when the rate dropped, revenues from the tax increased; the government took in more money. And in the 1980s, when the tax was increased to 28 percent, the revenues went down. So why raise it at all, especially given the fact that 100 million people in this country own stock and would be affected?”
Why, Robert Bartley couldn’t have put it better himself. Mr. Obama was totally flummoxed, betraying a fundamental lack of understanding of the Laffer Curve. The Democrat of Illinois spoke of the need to “finance health care for Americans who currently don’t have it,” and of the need to “invest in our infrastructure” and in “our schools.”
Mr. Gibson, to his credit, wouldn’t let the point go. “But history shows that when you drop the capital gains tax, the revenues go up,” he replied to Mr. Obama. Mr. Obama replied by changing the subject, to “a housing crisis that this president has not been attentive to.”
From the actual debate transcript:
MR. GIBSON: And in each instance, when the rate dropped, revenues from the tax increased. The government took in more money. And in the 1980s, when the tax was increased to 28 percent, the revenues went down. So why raise it at all, especially given the fact that 100 million people in this country own stock and would be affected?
SENATOR OBAMA: Well, Charlie, what I’ve said is that I would look at raising the capital gains tax for purposes of fairness. We saw an article today which showed that the top 50 hedge fund managers made $29 billion last year — $29 billion for 50 individuals. And part of what has happened is that those who are able to work the stock market and amass huge fortunes on capital gains are paying a lower tax rate than their secretaries. That’s not fair.
Charles Gibson, and yes, John McCain, have been talking about growing and expanding the economy which in turn would create more jobs and build more wealth. Call it “top-down,” or whatever you want, but it works. Barack Obama talks about fairness. He talks about reparative economic justice. He talks about spreading the wealth. He talks about “redistributive change.” Call it bottom-up or whatever you want (I call it “socialism” myself), it doesn’t work. Higher taxes, whether they be personal or corporate income taxes, or capital gains taxes, or several other forms of taxation, cause the economy to retract, not expand.
The simplest question: if Barack Obama, Harry Reid, and Nancy Pelosi raise taxes on corporations and businesses, do you for one second actually believe that they won’t pass those increases on to you?