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Rose Siding Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 04:19 PM
Original message
Taxes Cut, Not Saved
Jerry Bailey is precisely the kind of taxpayer President Bush had hoped to bestow his tax cuts on: an entrepreneur brew-pub owner, a job provider, not overly rich by Washington area standards but well off enough to pay a hefty sum to the federal government each year.
But after three tax cuts in three years, the part-owner of Loudoun County's Old Dominion Brewing Co. is not exactly celebrating his gains. Sure, his federal tax bill was trimmed, by a healthy $5,600, according to a rough calculation by Clint Stretch, director of tax policy at the accounting firm Deloitte & Touche LLP.

But other factors having nothing to do with federal taxes have clouded Bailey's situation. This year, the property tax bill on his Bethesda home will reach $6,725, a $950 increase over his payment four years ago. The annual cost of his 56-mile-a-day commute has jumped more than $300 since 2001, and the long, slow decline of business profits these past four years has left Bailey far behind, no matter what his federal tax payment may be.

"I'm not paying any taxes at all because we're not making any money," Bailey said with a sigh. "I loved paying taxes. It meant we were doing all right."
snip>
But many Americans feel they have lost ground since 2001, and a solid 71 percent are convinced they have received no tax cuts at all. A poll by CBS News and the New York Times in March found that only 22 percent believe the policies of the Bush administration made their taxes go down; 25 percent said their taxes actually went up.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A10813-20...
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2Design Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 04:27 PM
Response to Original message
1. exactly
the rethugs keep more for themselves.

and local and state governments have gone up because they couldn't make it on the cuts the fed did to them....everything has gone up for the middle to lower income people...
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randr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 04:50 PM
Response to Original message
2. It's the Tax Dodgers that are making out.
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havocmom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 05:04 PM
Response to Original message
3. When everybody does a little better, the nation is better off.
But the Cut-Taxes-for-the-Rich branch of the GOP doesn't want the nation to be better off. They only want to grab more and more with their greedy hands. A little better is not enough for them, they want more and don't care that trickle down never has worked. They are hoarding wealth. The tax cuts do NOT result in businesses investing in new jobs.

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Yavin4 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 05:27 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. It's More Than That havocmom
But the Cut-Taxes-for-the-Rich branch of the GOP doesn't want the nation to be better off. They only want to grab more and more with their greedy hands. A little better is not enough for them, they want more and don't care that trickle down never has worked.

They not only want more for themselves, they also want the general public to be far, far more worse off than they are. Their idea of an ideal economy would be a third world nation where only a small number of people have wealth, and every one else is dirt poor.
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havocmom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 06:08 PM
Response to Reply #4
7. I know I have been telling people since 82 they want us in 3rd world
status. People used to just write me off. Now their hard earned investment $$ is gone as they approach retirement and all the ethics they had in their work life are thanked with a 'FU" from corporate America.
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daleo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 06:52 PM
Response to Reply #4
9. As the noted liberal economist John Kenneth Galbraith once said
When talking about this mentality:

It's not good enough to be rich, others must be poor.
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stevebreeze Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 10:28 PM
Response to Reply #3
16. money is like fertilizer, works better when it is spread around
with apologies to Hello Dolly.
:kick:
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mom cat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 05:29 PM
Response to Original message
5. *co's fuzzy math just doesn't work for most of us.
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The Doctor. Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 06:07 PM
Response to Original message
6. It is truly Dumbfounding....
With only a few ounces of vision this country could suffer a renaissance of unprecedented growth. (kind of like in the 90's but with more real asset value)
It is the most tragic shame that in the greatest nation the world has ever seen there can not only be so much disparity, but there can be forces actively encouraging such a rift between the rich and the poor. If these forces, let's say... for the sake of argument... "Wolf-Mart", were to realize that the empowerment of the American middle class would result in a vast regenesis of spending habits, then such institutions would go out of their way to hire American labor. Not only that, but even the trade deficit would be positively affected and, correct me if I'm wrong, the American dollar would again rise in value. (Anyone in the North notice the Canadian dollar's strength these last few years?) With the empowerment of the American middle class we could see money not only flowing within the country, but flowing and empowering other parts of the world.
What can empowering the rest of the world mean? Well... When other countries willingly (as opposed to under threat or execution of invasion) open themselves up to capitalism, they almost invariably prosper. When a country is truly prosperous (a healthy middle class), that country is less likely to give rise to discontent.
What 22 year-old husband and father with a good job wants to fly a plane into a building?
That's what we need to achieve balance in the world - it will start with our own economy.
Deficit spending to cripple an adversary and extend into unnecessary territories is no longer useful. The USSR has crumbled because of it and the result is a country in misery, ruled by organized crime... hmmmmmmm.
I liked Gore because he thought ahead. As a Republican and a free-thinker, I found that attractive. This administration can't seem to think past it's next punitive action... this bothers me.

I feel abandonned by my own party - It's sad that there are so many Republicans who don't realize that they have been abandonned by the Bush regime as well. They simply follow without thought.

Right now this country has an artificially inflated Standard Of Living (S.O.L.) bubble which cannot be maintained if the power-brokers and corporations continue to siphon tax dollars to each-other and allow companies to outsource EVERYTHING. If the middle class is not acknowledged as the principle source of economic strength by this administration - we will see that bubble burst, and we'll ALL be wearing it.
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JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 07:04 PM
Response to Reply #6
10. Hear, hear/
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salin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 07:09 PM
Response to Reply #6
11. Back in 1992 the late Senator Tsongas
campaigned on rebuilding the economic engines via investment in infrastructure - attention to manufacturing - and thus nurturing the growth (once again) of a strong middle class. He was my first pick out of the then candidates for the democratic candidate race. The message didn't get picked up - but his strong emphasis of economic growth for the middle class was picked up and amplified by Clinton.

The sad thing is that in the growth of the 1990s, a trend that began in the mideighties continued - picking up steam by the end of the decade and turn of the millenium. Massive acquisitions and mergers that were not driven by increasing economic viability (eg vertical integration or logical diversification) but instead by increasing the appearance of growth and size and thus attempting to gain stock market value more than actual profitability. The cost of this trend (which in my mind picked up in popularity in the eighties leveraged buy-out binge) was two fold... First it encouraged companies to maintain a particular level of debt in order to not be TOO attractive for buyouts while at the same time not becoming to vulnerable to buyouts; and second, it increased to insane levels the debtloads carried by many large corporations. This is a factor that is seldom spoken about in the mainstream press (even the business press) though it was briefly a topic when Enron collapsed on itself. The problem is that increasing size of revenues now has to go towards debt-reduction/interest/etc. rather than towards corporate investment (eg r and d) ... and in trying to cut costs - pushes more focus on cheaper labor sources (they can't change the amount due on debts... but they CAN on labor.) Also not mentioned - is how much increased risk is carried by certain big investment banks. I believe that in the second corporate implosion (the WorldCom round) - that some banks, such as JPMOrgan Chase - were getting very nervous... that a few more massive failures would have a HUGE impact on their viability. Had this happened - what kind of financial crisis might have emerged?

I agree that the corporate eyes on short-term profit - at the exclusion of considering the need for a healthy consuming class (middle class as well as upper class) - would seem to be penny wise and pound foolish in the long run.

The thing, as a spiritual but left-leaning Christian, that I don't understand - is the religious right's complete deafness to the words in the Bible (old and new testament, but particularly in the teachings of Christ) that warn about greed. The damage inflicted upon others due to some extreme greed at the upper echelons of some multinational corporations - is incredibly broadspread and can have huge implications on the lives of many (thousands? more?), yet there is no push on those teachings. Instead there is obsessive use of religious rhetoric on personal sins that tend to primarily effect the individual, and perhaps one or two folks beyond the individual. It boggles my mind that gay marriage is repeatedly said by some republicans (most recently my former congressman John Hostettler) to be THE MOST SINGLE IMPORTANT ISSUE facing us today. But economic policies fueled by greed - no problem... nor the resulting crumbling of our economic infrastructure and long term stabilitiy... not a big deal... but the spector of gay marraige... *sigh*
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The Doctor. Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 08:51 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. Well Said...
And quite astute.

I imagine the 'Blow-out' of the markets and, subsequently, the banks would have resulted in a mid-eighties economic situation where corporations were solidifying their grasp on certain legislative loopholes and acquiring a little direct help from the govenment.
Some of what made conditions viable for the purposes of maintaining a nice profit-to-debt dynamic are still merely artifacts of legislative ponderance which has not been sorted out. (I'll see what neat stuff I can find and post.)
It is my hope that all the harping on 'corporate accountability' is a precursor to some REAL modifications.

But alas, that is sadly but a hope....
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AP Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 06:30 PM
Response to Original message
8. He should go into selling weapons or prescription drugs.
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NMDemDist2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 07:51 PM
Response to Original message
12. agreed and nominated n/t
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progressivebydesign Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 08:14 PM
Response to Original message
13. Easiest boost for the economy...
Consumer confidence. It plunged when Bush "took" office in January 2001. There was an overwhelming sense of pessimism when he got into office after losing the popular vote. The Consumer COnfidence Index has lagged terriby since then.. just when it starts to move up a bit.. it falls again.

Consumer Confidence drives the economy train. It's something so seemingly insignificant, yet it does more than any tax cut could. And.. it's nothing you can actually manipulate. Oh, the Bushies try to trot out positive economic news as a conerted push, and the CCI may move up a little bit.. but it plunges when reality meets press release.

When John Kerry is elected, the economy will improve. Consumer confidence will rise (as it did when Daddy Bush was voted out), because people associate Bush with a bad economy (and for good reason!), and Kerry is our fresh start. If Bush wins (by some means), it will plunge to the depths again, ESPECIALLY if he steals it.
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The Doctor. Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-25-04 08:56 PM
Response to Reply #13
15. There will be problems if * wins....
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