Dems want tax on "rich": Whoever they are

Ragnar

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So. Who can they successfully demonize/villianise in 2012? Don't ask the Democrats because they have no idea.

Democrats aim to tax the rich &#8211; but who are they? - latimes.com

Reporting from Washington—
President Obama and Democrats in Congress have aligned on a populist, "tax the rich" strategy for the 2012 campaign. Now they have to figure out exactly who that is.
...

The shift marked a victory for Democrats from parts of the country where the cost of living is high. Families earning $250,000 in their regions, lawmakers argued, look more like middle-class, dual-income worker bees than tony yacht owners.

"They are not rich," said Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), a leading proponent of the tax on wealthier people. "In large parts of the country, that kind of income does not get you a big home or lots of vacations or anything else that's associated with wealth in America."

But critics see a dangerous policy precedent in defining "the rich" by what they can buy, not by how their incomes compare with those of other taxpayers.
What they are really after is successful meme, rather than sound tax policy or responsible spending. This brings up the usual nagging question about the Democrat Party. When will they come up with a new idea? It's been decades.

:lol:
 

ladyliberal

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I sort of agree with you. What I disagree with is the suggestion that this is somehow unusual. As one of the administration's top economists acknowledged in the article,

"There is economic literature on optimal taxation, but that ain't what motivates these decisions," said Jared Bernstein, an economist and former economic advisor to Vice President Joe Biden.

In short, the laws passed by Congress are indeed political. That isn't an inherent quality either of the current Congress or of the Democratic party, though. Despite the fact that there tends to be more consensus on economic issues in the Republican party than in the Democratic party, the Republican policies are still see some disagreement, and of course they are politically motivated.

Much of the current disagreement stems from issues other than ideology. For Senators like Schumer who represent constituencies with a high cost of living, keeping the bar at which new taxes would kick in high is a parochial concern. For other Senators, their goal is to craft legislation that can pass, regardless of what tax policy their personal ideology points them towards.
 

Inthemiddle

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Much of the current disagreement stems from issues other than ideology. For Senators like Schumer who represent constituencies with a high cost of living, keeping the bar at which new taxes would kick in high is a parochial concern. For other Senators, their goal is to craft legislation that can pass, regardless of what tax policy their personal ideology points them towards.
Makes me think that perhaps income taxes shouldn't be bracketed strictly by income, but with a computational offset for cost of living. How could we do that?
 
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Ragnar

Ragnar

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Much of the current disagreement stems from issues other than ideology. For Senators like Schumer who represent constituencies with a high cost of living, keeping the bar at which new taxes would kick in high is a parochial concern. For other Senators, their goal is to craft legislation that can pass, regardless of what tax policy their personal ideology points them towards.
Makes me think that perhaps income taxes shouldn't be bracketed strictly by income, but with a computational offset for cost of living. How could we do that?
With a flat tax.

But then what use is demagoguery? :razz:

The problem with a cost of living computation is that cost of living is so strongly determined by government policy itself. Various State taxes, various State minimum wage laws, regulations of various industry which differs from region to region etc etc.
 

Money

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Much of the current disagreement stems from issues other than ideology. For Senators like Schumer who represent constituencies with a high cost of living, keeping the bar at which new taxes would kick in high is a parochial concern. For other Senators, their goal is to craft legislation that can pass, regardless of what tax policy their personal ideology points them towards.
Makes me think that perhaps income taxes shouldn't be bracketed strictly by income, but with a computational offset for cost of living. How could we do that?
Don't touch nuthin'.

Progressive tax - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 

The Rabbi

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I sort of agree with you. What I disagree with is the suggestion that this is somehow unusual. As one of the administration's top economists acknowledged in the article,

"There is economic literature on optimal taxation, but that ain't what motivates these decisions," said Jared Bernstein, an economist and former economic advisor to Vice President Joe Biden.

In short, the laws passed by Congress are indeed political. That isn't an inherent quality either of the current Congress or of the Democratic party, though. Despite the fact that there tends to be more consensus on economic issues in the Republican party than in the Democratic party, the Republican policies are still see some disagreement, and of course they are politically motivated.

Much of the current disagreement stems from issues other than ideology. For Senators like Schumer who represent constituencies with a high cost of living, keeping the bar at which new taxes would kick in high is a parochial concern. For other Senators, their goal is to craft legislation that can pass, regardless of what tax policy their personal ideology points them towards.
It isn't unusual that a president with failing ratings is now campaigning against "The Rich"? When was the last time you remember that happening? Bush? No. Clinton? No. Bush? No. Reagan? No. Carter? No.
Nope, I cannot remember a single time that a president ran against "The Rich".
Maybe FDR.
 

ladyliberal

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Much of the current disagreement stems from issues other than ideology. For Senators like Schumer who represent constituencies with a high cost of living, keeping the bar at which new taxes would kick in high is a parochial concern. For other Senators, their goal is to craft legislation that can pass, regardless of what tax policy their personal ideology points them towards.
Makes me think that perhaps income taxes shouldn't be bracketed strictly by income, but with a computational offset for cost of living. How could we do that?
An income tax already takes cost of living into account indirectly. Areas with high costs of living pay higher salaries for the same work due to supply and demand (someone working a fast food job in a posh New York neighborhood makes much more than someone doing the same job in a rural community). Thus, cost of living influences income, and so income taxes take cost of living into account indirectly.

If we want to go beyond this (which I think we would, in an ideal world) I think the best way is through deductions. One could identify certain expenses that were associated with "living" (food, shelter, health care) and make them tax-deductible. However, if we are primarily concerned with variations in cost of living over very small geographic areas, then such deductions/credits are perhaps best managed through municipalities rather than the federal tax system.
 

Money

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I don't know what a computational offset is, but progressive tax is based on the balance of after-tax earnings and the cost of living/poverty line as determining factors affecting your rate. As you deduct more kids, the cost of living is adjusted accordingly.
 

Sherry

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They'll define the rich as anyone who gets the entitlement and class envy crowd all riled up.
 

LoneLaugher

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I sort of agree with you. What I disagree with is the suggestion that this is somehow unusual. As one of the administration's top economists acknowledged in the article,

"There is economic literature on optimal taxation, but that ain't what motivates these decisions," said Jared Bernstein, an economist and former economic advisor to Vice President Joe Biden.

In short, the laws passed by Congress are indeed political. That isn't an inherent quality either of the current Congress or of the Democratic party, though. Despite the fact that there tends to be more consensus on economic issues in the Republican party than in the Democratic party, the Republican policies are still see some disagreement, and of course they are politically motivated.

Much of the current disagreement stems from issues other than ideology. For Senators like Schumer who represent constituencies with a high cost of living, keeping the bar at which new taxes would kick in high is a parochial concern. For other Senators, their goal is to craft legislation that can pass, regardless of what tax policy their personal ideology points them towards.
It isn't unusual that a president with failing ratings is now campaigning against "The Rich"? When was the last time you remember that happening? Bush? No. Clinton? No. Bush? No. Reagan? No. Carter? No.
Nope, I cannot remember a single time that a president ran against "The Rich".
Maybe FDR.
And THAT would be because not since FDR have we had an economy with so much of the wealth concentrated at the top. You are catching on. Scary.
 

bigrebnc1775

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LoneLaugher

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bigrebnc1775

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They do? That is incredible and unbelievable at the same time. Do you know how much income those in the top 1% have?
The top six combined worth is 2 trillion dollars.
The top one percent discussion refers to income.....not total worth. Please. Do you know what the numbers are for the top 1% of income earners?
1 Darrell Issa (R-Calif) $156,050,022, $451,100,000

2 Jane Harman (D-Calif) $151,480,522, $435,429,001

3 John Kerry (D-Mass) $182,755,534, $294,869,059

4 Mark Warner (D-Va) $65,692,210, $283,077,995

5 Jared Polis (D-Colo) $36,694,140, $285,123,996

6 Herb Kohl (D-Wis) $89,358,027, $231,245,995


7 Vernon Buchanan (R-Fla) $-69,434,661, $366,180,982

8 Michael McCaul (R-Texas) $73,685,086, $201,537,000

9 Jay Rockefeller (D-WVa) $61,446,018, $136,218,002

10 Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif) $46,055,250, $108,109,018

11 Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ) $49,083,204, $104,690,018

12 Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif) $-7,356,915, $124,229,990

13 Alan Mark Grayson (D-Fla) $31,411,044, $78,522,000

14 James E. Risch (R-Idaho) $19,468,057, $89,565,995

15 Gary Miller (R-Calif) $19,365,053, $84,302,000

16 Bob Corker (R-Tenn) $9,778,047, $91,656,998

17 Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) $19,898,179, $67,697,000

18 Nita M. Lowey (D-NY) $14,900,036, $63,125,000

19 Kenny Ewell Marchant (R-Texas) $13,303,385, $63,106,351

20 Brian P. Bilbray (R-Calif) $25,143,635, $50,495,623

21 Harry Teague (D-NM) $21,119,041, $53,084,997

22 Denny Rehberg (R-Mont) $6,598,014, $56,244,997

23 Hillary Clinton $10,727,014, $51,759,999

24 Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine) $12,556,055, $44,669,000

25 Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn) $11,342,046, $44,889,998
Meet America's 25 Richest Politicians | ZeroHedge
 

Money

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that's still net worth, but they are BALLIN'!

damn.
 

Londoner

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What they are really after is successful meme, rather than sound tax policy or responsible spending. This brings up the usual nagging question about the Democrat Party. When will they come up with a new idea? It's been decades.
I actually agree that the Left has to re-invent itself. When Clinton declared the era of big government over, and then passed NAFTA, and then proceeded to make the largest cuts to welfare in the program's history, the old Left officially died. They abandoned Labor & the Welfare State for market fundamentalism - allowing Saint Allen to do nothing while the largest bubble in American history grew unchecked. The reason the Democrats could not pass the public option or let the Bush tax cuts expire or enact meaningful reform over Wall Street gambling - despite having majorities in both houses - is because there is no Left. Bush was able to accomplish far more with far less; indeed, throngs of Republican congressmen lost their political careers over Iraq & Big Government Conservatism. Obama does not enjoy such lemming loyalty. Like Carter, his troops are not afraid of him. Had the equivalent of "Blue Dogs" formed under Chaney, they would have been destroyed - this is why Bush was able to hold his narrow majorities tightly in place, as they walked the Iraq plank and retired to the pharmaceutical lobby. Indeed, unlike the GOP, the Dems don't have an institutional structure in place to punish those who break ranks, or reward those who sacrifice their political career for Dear Leader. They don't have nearly the institutional web of think tanks, research groups, political action committees, and corporate funded havens where men like Dinesh De'Souza and Bill Kristol are paid handsomely to be party Apparatchiks. The Left is a disorganized mess with no leadership and insufficient corporate funding. Just compare the Tea Party (with its national muscle) to the OWS morons. The Left doesn't have a Grover Norquis or Freedom Works standing in the shadows ready to primary the disobedient. Put simply: the Dems have become Republican lite, fighting over raising the top tax bracket 4%. This is not enough to found a vital movement. The Left is dead.

To the problem at hand. Wealthy job creators are not going to create one job until their customers come back. You can give them a million tax breaks, but only solvent consumers will warrant domestic investment. Problem is: consumption over the last several decades was based on debt (not solid jobs, which had been shipped away). You see, dear friend, once we lost our manufacturing jobs to globalization and automatization, we decided to build a consumption economy around credit cards, asset bubbles, and financial jiggery-pokery. We tried to make up for Reagan's failed trickle down with Master Card and American Express. Research consumer debt levels starting in the 80s - it will blow your mind. That game is over.

On the other hand, American business was given mobility to pursue ultra-cheap 3rd world labor - so their profits shot up to unprecedented levels. But the profits never trickled down to American wages, benefits, or standard of living - which is exactly why business invests in phantom derivative markets instead of the real economy. In fact, business used their newfound wealth to buy more and more politicians, until they owned both parties and were able to undermine social safety nets, entitlements, public transportation, affordable education, & anti-trust laws - everything that helped sustain the demand of those whose solid jobs had been shipped away. (The domestic economy of the postwar years worked partly because government made sure there were dollars sitting in middle class wallets. And when there are dollars sitting in middle class wallets, the capitalist is forced to invest and add jobs in order to capture that money. Those days are over because we bought into the voodoo - we were tricked into believing that increased profits on top always results in domestic jobs. The people who told us this were busy doing the opposite: creating a very powerful globalism where capital was freed to leave its host nation in the dust)

The Democrats need to address the fact that the unprecedented surplus capital on top is not trickling down into consumer demand (but speculative garbage. Seriously, the Bush tax cuts had nowhere to go but the derivatives market because this country spent the last 30 years undermining American wages in favor of Asian sweatshops. There was insufficient demand in the American economy to warrant investment - so Wall Street took these massive surpluses made possible by the anti-tax movement and invested it in garbage. That money should have gone into infrastructure, as well as education and health care for the next generation of American workers, so they are able to raise the competitive excellence of this nation. Instead, it went into the pockets of the Koch brothers, who recycled it into the Republican party for the purpose of keeping this corrupt mess afloat). Regardless, reforming tax policy is necessary, but new thinking is the only way out. The old jobs are not coming back, especially because the job-shippers own government. They don't want well paid American consumers - they don't need well paid American consumers. They want cheap labor - and they now have mobility to sell their products all over the globe. The old American consumer is disposable. They filled him up with credit until he went bankrupt; now they can move on to the next consumer market until it too goes bankrupt. Tragically, this means we are going to have a permanent jobless underclass. Take my advice and invest in prisons.

(Why do you think LBJ's War on Poverty morphed into Reagan's War on Drugs? Because when you get rid of jobs & roll back safety nets, you need stronger law enforcement and more prison beds)
 
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LoneLaugher

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Everyone know that the pols are rich but they are not MOSTLY members of the top 1% of income earners.
 

Money

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I followed the link and seen that!!!

That ketchup pimp is ballin' out of control. Kerry should throw diamonds on his teeth for that shit.
 

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