Cold Fury

Harshing your mellow since 9/01

Running the numbers

In Ogabeworld, they don’t add up.

When he first unveiled the tax-hike plan he dubbed the Buffett Rule, President Obama claimed it would “raise enough money” to “stabilize our debt and deficits.”

“This is not politics,” he insisted,“it’s math.”

Well, it looks like Obama finally double-checked the arithmetic.

Because the White House now disingenuously claims that the proposed 30 percent minimum tax rate on high-earners “was never our plan to bring the deficit down and get the debt under control.”

Instead, says the president, it’s all about “fairness” and making sure that “all Americans play by the same rules.”

As the Heritage Foundation notes, the top 1 percent of US taxpayers — those earning more than $380,000 a year — earn 20 percent of all income, but pay 38 percent of all income taxes. And those in the top 10 percent ($114,000-plus) earn 45 percent of the income and pay 70 percent of all taxes.

Meanwhile, the bottom 50 percent — those earning less than $33,000 — pay less than 3 percent of federal taxes while earning 13 percent of the income.

Indeed, nearly half of all US households pay absolutely no federal income tax at all.

Actually, what Obama really wants is a dramatic increase in the capital-gains tax — which primarily hits business owners and investors.

The very people, that is, who create the jobs that America — beset by chronic high unemployment — desperately needs.

And, by so doing, keep more people off various welfare lines and therefore less reliant on government–and that’s what Obama really doesn’t want.

Update! More numbers from Krauthammer:

Okay. Let’s do the math. The Joint Committee on Taxation estimates this new tax would yield between $4 billion and $5 billion a year. If we collect the Buffett tax for the next 250 years — a span longer than the life of this republic — it would not cover the Obama deficit for 2011 alone.

As an approach to our mountain of debt, the Buffett Rule is a farce. And yet Obama repeated the ridiculous claim again this week. “It will help us close our deficit.” Does he really think we’re that stupid?

Of course he does. He’s a liberal-fascist; the idea that he’s smarter than everybody else is his whole raison d’everydamnedthing. Update within an update! On reflection, I really have to include this absolutely perfect bit from Krauthammer’s piece:

Three years ago, Obama promised universal health care that saves money. Today, he offers a capital gains tax hike that spurs economic growth. This is free-lunch egalitarianism.

The Buffett Rule redistributes deck chairs on the Titanic, ostensibly to make more available for those in steerage. Nice idea, but the iceberg cometh.

And that right there is why Krauthammer is Krauthammer, and guys like me…ain’t. A mere handful of lines, just chock full of rich, buttery goodness.

Distinction without much difference update! Yet more numbers-running, revealing that absolutely no one in either feckless party is taking the coming train wreck very seriously:

For instance, the president denounces the Ryan budget as “thinly veiled Social Darwinism.” One would think that Social Darwinism would mean actually cutting the budget. But in reality, Ryan’s budget increases federal spending by more than $1 trillion over the next 10 years. 

Ryan does spend roughly $352 billion less over 10 years on domestic discretionary spending than would the president. The president suggests that this means that children could no longer go to college, the weather service would be abolished, and roads and bridges would crumble into dust. In reality, the largest gap between the president’s spending plans and Ryan’s would occur in 2016, when Ryan would spend $43 billion less on domestic discretionary programs than the president. That amounts to roughly 1.1 percent of projected total federal spending that year. Ryan would, in fact, slightly increase discretionary domestic spending from $1.170 trillion in 2013 to $1.212 trillion in 2022. Social Darwinism should be made of sterner stuff.

Of course it should–and, actually, is. It’s just that Americans themselves aren’t made of particularly stern stuff these days, and prefer self-deceit to facing the difficult choices.

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1 thought on “Running the numbers

  1. Jeff G has a new post up about how Obama paid a lower percentage rate in taxes than his secretary, despite making nine times as much.

    Laboratory-grade Irony in massive quantities…

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