Friday, September 17, 2010

Standing up for the Middle Class!

9-17-10 pondering brain

Warning! I'm at it again. Some of you may not what to read this.

No, not the Palin thing, but the TAX thing again.
I've been studying up a bit, thanks to fellow blogger California Gal who sent me to an expert, Robert Reich. HERE is the full article which is making sense to me. You can also verify his credentials there also.

Quoting Reich:

"So-called supply-side economists don’t like raising taxes on anyone, of course, and argue that raising them on the well-off will slow economic growth. They say people at the top will have less incentive to work hard, invest, and invent.

Unfortunately for supply-siders, history has proven them wrong again and again. During almost three decades spanning 1951 to 1980, when America’s top marginal tax rate was between 70 and 92 percent, the nation’s average annual growth was 3.7 percent. But between 1983 and start of the Great Recession, when the top rate was far lower – ranging between 35 and 39 percent – the economy grew an average of just 3 percent per year. Supply-siders are fond of claiming that Ronald Reagan’s 1981 cuts caused the 1980s economic boom. In fact, that boom followed Reagan’s 1982 tax increase. The 1990s boom likewise was not the result of a tax cut; it came in the wake of Bill Clinton’s 1993 tax increase.

A final reason for allowing the Bush tax cut to expire for people at the top is the most basic of all. Although Wall Street’s excesses were the proximate cause of the Great Recession, its fundamental cause lay in the nation’s widening inequality. For many years, most of the gains of economic growth in America have been going to the top – leaving the nation’s vast middle class with a shrinking portion of total income. (In the 1970s, the top 1 percent received 8 to 9 percent of total income, but thereafter income concentrated so rapidly that by 2007 the top received 23.5 percent of the total.)......

George W. Bush’s 2001 tax cut was a huge windfall for the wealthy. About 40 percent of its benefits went to the tiny sliver of Americans earning over $500,000. So rather than debate whether to end the Bush tax cuts for the top and restore the top marginal tax rates to where they were under Bill Clinton, we should be debating whether to raise the highest marginal tax rate higher than it was under Bill Clinton and use the proceeds to give the middle class a permanent tax cut.

I’m not suggesting this, mind you, but just to get the debate started: How about restoring the top rate to where it was under John F. Kennedy (76 percent), or under Dwight Eisenhower (91 percent)?"


I must say this last part really blew my mind. I had no idea what the tax percentages were back then.

As one columnist said in an article last week, Eugene Robinson,... "The richest American need to pay higher taxes, not because they're bad people who deserve to be punished, but because they earn a much bigger share of the nation's income and hold a bigger share of its overall wealth."

Also I was thinking about the "logic" people use that a tax increase on the wealthy hurts small businesses and then they would have to passing on the cost to us consumers.... well if that logic holds, then we should have seen a drop in costs and more hiring when they first received that big fast tax break in 2001. To my knowledge THIS never happened.

Another thought phoned into the Des Moines Register Newspaper "2 Cent Worth" line stated: "Do the Republicans have a way to pay for the $3 trillion over the next 10 years that it would take to keep in place the Bush tax cuts to the wealthy? I think the answer is no."

So I guess my current passion is standing up for the MIDDLE CLASS. Let's NOT go backward to the days when we had only two income classes; the very wealthly and the working poor.


  1. Yes, picture is a pasel of mine done a few years ago. Fall is Iowa is so beautiful!

  2. Judy, Judy, Judy.
    Someone should tell Mr. Reich the first thing i learning in Statistics- correlation is not causation. He is making a blanket statement that the single cause of higher nat'l income was higher marginal tax rates. What about the unemployment rate, business cycle, market growth, interest rates, international political climate, inflation- all things, as well as the tax rates, that impact national income?
    The reason so many people want the tax cuts extended in their entirety (other than the fact that it is utterly rediculous that just because you make more means you have to pay a higher percentage) is because of the current economic climate. We are on the edge- teetering between recovery and double-dip recession. The politiacl climate is steaming, business ain't boomin', deflation is a possibility,market analysts are preping for a huge drop, and unemployement is holding strong at 10%. A legit economist would tell you that although the deficit needs to be cut, tax hikes isn't the way to do it.
    If I had more time, I would find you 100 articles that discount Keysian economics and support Classical. But time I do not have.
    My fingers are still crossed that you'll realize the error of your ways and join us over on the right (no pun intended) side! :)

  3. Who to believe? Gee I don't really know. I still feel our country was the greatest when the middle class was the strongest. Buisness and labor it's a dance... who is leading?

  4. When Bush enacted the original tax cuts, my husband and I were astounded by the largesse he bestowed on his wealthy friends. They didn't put him in office for nuttin', honey! We also didn't need his stinkin' tax cuts and wanted him to run the country more responsibly. Oh, yeah, I forgot. This was the man who ran three companies into bankruptcy before he became president.

    Robert Reich is correct. There is no trickle down effect. The wealthy just keep it all to themselves. They don't add more jobs. Ronald Reagan started all this bullshit voodoo economics (just ask George H.W. Bush) and his policies nearly ran our country into the ground in the 80's.

    You're on the right side, my friend!

  5. Susan, you are really a "sister" of mine in Ohio!