Whaaattt???? Republicans want to raise taxes on me, but not on the rich???? WHY?
“News flash: Congressional Republicans want to raise your taxes,” writes the Associated Press this morning in a story that explains how Congress will allow the payroll tax break to expire come January 1. Currently, workers pay 6.2 percent of their wages in taxes that go toward Social Security; employers pay an equal amount. Last December, Congress approved Obama’s request that workers only pay 4.2 percent for the following year while keeping employers’ rates the same. The president is asking Congress to extend the policy to help take pressure off the millions of workers who pay more in payroll taxes than in federal income taxes. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office says that payroll tax reductions give the economy a short-term boost.
Republicans are arguing that this tax cut will push the deficit higher, and they’re not wrong: A 12-month reduction will cost the government $120 billion this year. But they refuse to let the Bush tax cuts expire, arguing that doing so would amount to a tax increase — and Republicans are anti-tax, no matter what. Don’t worry, House Republicans have a good explanation for this dissonance: “Not all tax relief is created equal.”
The White House blog finally brings us the comedic gem about budget cuts we’ve been anxiously awaiting:
As the President points out in this video, our government doesn’t need a website dedicated to foresters who play the fiddle. We also don’t need multiple sites dealing with invasive plants (here and here). And I‘m pretty sure the website dedicated to the Centennial of Flight can come down… particularly since the Centennial was in 2003.
My favorite part, regarding the Fiddlin’ Forresters: “I’ll put their music on my iPod, but I’m not paying for their website.” You can bet that, even with their imminent website shutdown, those forresters are excited to have their music finally getting this kind of national attention …
Sweet explanation of the budget problem. Easy as pie.
Philip Greenspun divided the U.S. 2011 federal budget by 100,000,000 and wrote a little parable:
We have a family that is spending $38,200 per year. The family’s income is $21,700 per year. The family adds $16,500 in credit card debt every year in order to pay its bills. After a long and difficult debate among family members, keeping in mind that it was not going to be possible to borrow $16,500 every year forever, the parents and children agreed that a $380/year premium cable subscription could be terminated. So now the family will have to borrow only $16,120 per year.