Good news: Obama’s dumb “Buffett Rule” budget gimmick would reduce the deficit by around … four percent

posted at 9:57 pm on January 27, 2012 by Allahpundit

What’s the saddest part of this? That The One is so desperate to demagogue Romney and the GOP as the party of the rich that he’d make a chump-change gambit like this the centerpiece of his budget agenda? Or that liberals are pretending to be impressed? Good lord, I hope they’re pretending.

The liberal outfit Citizens for Tax Justice expects $50 billion in new revenue from the Buffett Rule in year one. Other estimates peg the total take even lower. Remember, the feds spend north of $10 billion each day.

Republican lawmakers — noting the absence of real numbers — attacked the plan as a political charade, an attempt to score points in the November election instead of a serious policy to reduce federal debt. One outside analysis by the non-partisan Tax Foundation indicates the rule would generate another $36.7 billion a year in revenue — far from enough to make a serious dent in a national debt of $15 trillion.

“It’s a smokescreen,” Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) told POLITICO. “Barack Obama just wants to pit one group against another so he can raise more money to spend on a bloated government.”…

On average, someone hauling in $1 million a year might have fork over another $50,000 to Uncle Sam. That’s a sizable tab for individuals but not a lot for the government, said David Logan, an economist at the Tax Foundation, a Washington, D.C. think tank.

“It’s an insignificant revenue gain,” he said. “I view it more as a political tool than anything else, because it doesn’t raise enough revenue to dent the deficit or the debt.”

Curiously enough, the White House has been in no rush to release its own inevitably disappointing projection. $36.7 billion would reduce the projected deficit for 2012 by a tidy 3.8 percent — essentially a rounding error — but lefty Greg Sargent’s excitement is palpable at the thought of Democrats forcing a high-profile floor vote in the Senate on the Buffett Rule to make Republicans squirm. The response to this will be, “Well, $50 billion’s better than nothing,” but that’s actually not true. It’s less healthy for the country to waste time on gimmicks like this, which sustain the fantasy of low-information voters that tax hikes on the rich can close the hole in the budget, than it would be for Obama to offer nothing and let the sense of crisis grow until Congress feels public pressure to act on mandatory spending. That’s the only real fix, of course, but reforming Medicare doesn’t get Obama any closer to his real goal of winning re-election whereas the “Buffett Rule,” a.k.a. the Romney Rule, does, so we’re going to jerk around with this red herring for months and months and months to come. Those priorities deserve a second term, no?

Here’s Reason editor Matt Welch with a better idea for how to make Warren Buffett a featured player in this debate.


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Yet the Obamabots just keep swilling his kool-aid. Who needs hardcore drugs when ya’ got that?

stukinIL4now on January 27, 2012 at 11:56 PM

hard drugs? me please!

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 12:03 AM

what, WHAT!! it’s right here :) DHChron on January 27, 2012 at 10:55 PM

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 12:01 AM

Yes I see it and the link beatcanvas gave you. I’m not that far in the doghouse tonight, yet. Sorry to have not seen it right away, I’m old and need new glasses.

Bmore on January 28, 2012 at 12:04 AM

If raising taxes to 30% cuts 4% of the defict, then raising taxes to 300% will cut 40% of the deficit.

angryed on January 27, 2012 at 11:56 PM

yo with the mad math skills!

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 12:06 AM

Yes I see it and the link beatcanvas gave you. I’m not that far in the doghouse tonight, yet. Sorry to have not seen it right away, I’m old and need new glasses.

Bmore on January 28, 2012 at 12:04 AM

hahahaha…I can’t believe my brilliance went unnoticed.

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 12:07 AM

hahahaha…I can’t believe my brilliance went unnoticed.

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 12:07 AM

No I’m just old, blind, and in the doghouse. Plus my buddy over on that Palin thread is having his normal good time. Fun to watch.

Bmore on January 28, 2012 at 12:13 AM

Sure, if you accept the liberal premise that our economy is static (now stagnant), wealth is finite, but in the real world, the liberal premise merely forces investors to go else where and keep their seed money safely hidden, helping to keep us in the death spiral we’re swirling around in right now.

we can pull out of our flat inverted spin by righting ourselves and slamming the throttle to the firewall, but this President is continuing his plan to ice our wings and stab the rudder.

The ground is coming up, time is going to run out at some point.

We need a new pilot.

Time to get this party started.

Speakup on January 28, 2012 at 12:16 AM

Time to get this party started.

Speakup on January 28, 2012 at 12:16 AM

So what you gonna do about it?

beatcanvas on January 28, 2012 at 12:19 AM

Speakup on January 28, 2012 at 12:16 AM

I’m liking the mixed metaphors – stellar

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 12:21 AM

Time to get this party started.

Speakup on January 28, 2012 at 12:16 AM

So what you gonna do about it?

beatcanvas on January 28, 2012 at 12:19 AM

A moratorium on corporate and cap gains taxes would be a good start and would have cost a lot less than Obamanomics.
And of course repeal Dodd/Frank and Obamajustwantsyoutothinkhecares.

Speakup on January 28, 2012 at 12:16 AM

I’m liking the mixed metaphors – stellar

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 12:21 AM

Thanks

Speakup on January 28, 2012 at 12:29 AM

A moratorium on corporate and cap gains taxes would be a good start and would have cost a lot less than Obamanomics.

And of course repeal Dodd/Frank and Obamajustwantsyoutothinkhecares.

Awesome. Totally agree.

What candidate are you giving at least an hour of your week to help achieve these ends?

beatcanvas on January 28, 2012 at 12:34 AM

I’m out! beatcanvas, nice to meet you huge dork – all you other cats too. Tell them I raped and pillaged in the name of God and Country. laters

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 12:40 AM

No arithmetic needed here, obamas projected figures are always wrong and in a bad way. Anything he has done that turned out to be a good thing was not his idea in the first place. He should be thanking Bush instead of blaming him. getting bin laden was forced on him ,he dithered for over 6 months after he was located as a result of enhanced interrogations that he condemns.If he was ever in the service he would be cleaning latrines as punishment for screwing up every week.

dunce on January 28, 2012 at 12:42 AM

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 12:40 AM

Night, see ya later.

Bmore on January 28, 2012 at 12:47 AM

Four percent would actually be impressive.

In reality, the “rule” – whatever the heck it looks like without the word “should” – would increase the deficit by depressing revenue. You know, in the opposite manner from George W. Bush’s deranged cowboy tax cuts that increased revenue.

Oh, and the Buffet Rule wouldn’t just decrease revenue, it would do it by destroying wealth in the private economy. Then again, it’s like any other tax that way.

HitNRun on January 28, 2012 at 1:29 AM

You know, if conservatives were actually serious and disciplined about teaching jerks like Buffet and Immelt a lesson, we would boycott their every company and product. Go Galt on their enterprises.

But as a group, we’re not. I noticed that Glenn Reynolds in the run-up to the light bulb ban always pointed his Amazon links to Sylvania bulbs, not GE. He points to bloggers, not to lefty media. Discipline.

Not until it really hurts will we do anything. And we’re not there yet, and when we are, it will likely be too late.

But in the meantime, we dance in forums like this for entertainment.

beatcanvas on January 27, 2012 at 10:55 PM

Agreed. Until we stop, and are consciousness, in our purchases we won’t get any where. Look at Hollywood. Why are they hurting? Because they’ve just outright offended so many Americans. And just insulted their intelligence with sub-par story lines; I won’t deny that either. Now they’re so desperate they’re trying to threaten us with SOPA & PIPA. Just goes to show the power we really do have if we all really work together and think about where our dollars go. Remember that $ = power

doublezero12 on January 28, 2012 at 1:56 AM

I mean ‘conscious.’ Sorry about that.

doublezero12 on January 28, 2012 at 1:59 AM

Bmore on January 27, 2012 at 11:13 PM

Reagan!

KOOLAID2 on January 28, 2012 at 2:08 AM

Remember, remember, the 5th of November. Remember, remember the 4th of July.

MooCowBang on January 28, 2012 at 3:22 AM

MooCowBang on January 28, 2012 at 3:22 AM

So if I’m getting this right, $36.7 billion in a single year is nothing more than a “Rounding Error”, but it’s perfectly fine for your congressmen to spend months/years nickel and diming at cutting away at $28 billion for high speed rail or open investigations over Solyndra. Never change guys!

But yeah, I’m an “Obamabot” or something so I’m wrong just because.

Typhonsentra on January 28, 2012 at 5:34 AM

That assumes that the “extra” tax revenue will be used to offset the deficit – a historically inaccurate assumption. In fact, extra revenues are spent at the rate of about 1.5 to 1. So the affect will be to increase the deficit even more.

BBReggie on January 28, 2012 at 6:59 AM

Apparently you’re not getting much of an education. Corporations can leverage a number of tactics to reduce taxable earnings

bayam on January 27, 2012 at 11:02 PM

Bayam is actually right – to a limited extent – on this one. There are a lot of things that corporations can do in response to higher tax rates, such as sitting on their cash reserves, not expanding, not creating jobs, or shipping jobs to China. Even the threat of higher taxes will cause capitol flight, or other adverse economic outomes. This is one of the key reasons for our current exonomic stagnation.

Liberals such as this base their estimates of tax revenues based on static analysis – the assumption that the party being taxed is not going to react to the higher tax rates. Anyone with any degree of independent thought and intelligence can see that this is false, which is why only doctrinare liberals (and people fooled by them)can believe in foolishness like static analysis.

SubmarineDoc on January 28, 2012 at 7:06 AM

I have an idea for the “Buffett Rule”:
How about he pay the same tax rate as the missus and me?
Of course he could donate billion$ to the Treasury, but we know that’ll never happen.

What a bunch of whining, elítist losers – includes Mittens.

~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on January 28, 2012 at 7:36 AM

How is it that people won’t realise that tax for rich people is probably about right. It’s for us poor suckers that it’s too high. Buffet’s tax is fine, it’s the tax on his secretary that’s too high…

All of this just ends up as another excuse to hike taxes …

Hope on January 28, 2012 at 8:40 AM

But yeah, I’m an “Obamabot” or something so I’m wrong just because.

Typhonsentra on January 28, 2012 at 5:34 AM

you’re wrong cause you’re dumb

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 8:41 AM

I get tired of the “won’t do much” or “chump-change” arguments. 4% is a decent start IMO. Problem is, they will just spend the additional money on something stupid.

NotEasilyFooled on January 28, 2012 at 8:42 AM

All of this just ends up as another excuse to hike taxes …

Hope on January 28, 2012 at 8:40 AM

It won’t be just on the “rich” either – whoever believes that is blind. Where’s the money at? The middle class baby!

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 8:44 AM

4% is a decent start IMO. Problem is, they will just spend the additional money on something stupid.

NotEasilyFooled on January 28, 2012 at 8:42 AM

4% is an estimate. When’s the last time a government estimate worked out? New taxes often depress revenues and you’re right – they’ll spend the money anyway.

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 8:46 AM

…and again–how much does Warren Buffet’s secretary make? That’s the tax record I want to see disclosed…

hungrymongo on January 28, 2012 at 9:03 AM

It isn’t about making the country any better off or helping anybody. It is about trying to take “those rich people down a peg”. Notice the president and the other marxists on the left like to say millionairs can afford it or have money they don’t need. It all comes from a twisted sense of fairness and envey that nobody should have any more than they need that way everyone
can have enough or the same.

If I hear one more time that someone that is sending the government a couple of million dollars a year isn’t paying their fair share while some people send nothing or actually make money
from the tax system,I am going to scream.

smrtas1 on January 28, 2012 at 9:17 AM

If I hear one more time that someone that is sending the government a couple of million dollars a year isn’t paying their fair share while some people send nothing or actually make money
from the tax system,I am going to scream.

smrtas1 on January 28, 2012 at 9:17 AM

what’s up with those rich people not paying their fair share?

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 9:21 AM

4% is a decent start IMO. Problem is, they will just spend the additional money on something stupid.

NotEasilyFooled on January 28, 2012 at 8:42 AM

4% is an estimate. When’s the last time a government estimate worked out? New taxes often depress revenues and you’re right – they’ll spend the money anyway.

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 8:46 AM

Next month it will be adjusted down 4% just like the 4th quarter’s GDP.

CW on January 28, 2012 at 9:22 AM

Next month it will be adjusted down 4% just like the 4th quarter’s GDP.

CW on January 28, 2012 at 9:22 AM

The CBO is such a crapshoot. Where do these financial geniuses come from? I’d like to give a little crap back – some backdoor brownies.

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 9:35 AM

4% is 4%. No one’s going around saying this will single handedly close the budget deficit. Take it or leave it, budget hawks

ernesto on January 27, 2012 at 10:02 PM

I’ll take it if the other 95% is spending and entitlement cuts.

As if we needed anymore proof you people can’t be taken seriously.

Chuck Schick on January 28, 2012 at 9:54 AM

Notice the president and the other marxists on the left like to say millionairs can afford it or have money they don’t need. It all comes from a twisted sense of fairness and envey that nobody should have any more than they need that way everyone
can have enough or the same.

smrtas1 on January 28, 2012 at 9:17 AM

Yeah, they’re all fine with telling everyone else what they should do with their unseemly extravagant wealth, yet have not seen ONE of these hypocrites, MULTI-millionaires, and billionaires all, put one red cent where their mouth is.

Obrainy, you hypocrite Jugeared Jesus wannabe: until you divest yourself of your millions, which are obviously too much for any one person to possess — by your own standards — stop telling everyone else what they SHOULD do with theirs.

Their is no sound rationale for the “soak the rich” platform, except to mislead ,and obfuscate the simple truths about the economy and the federal government’s overreaching role in attempting to realize this mythical “social justice” by turning citizen against citizen and fomenting anger and a sense of entitlement among the unfortunate among us who are being systematically destroyed by said “social justice” in the long term.

hillbillyjim on January 28, 2012 at 10:10 AM

hillbillyjim on January 28, 2012 at 10:10 AM

I think I have a crush on you jim…yes, I’m offering gay sex.

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 10:17 AM

hillbillyjim on January 28, 2012 at 10:10 AM

I think I have a crush on you jim…yes, I’m offering gay sex.

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 10:17 AM

That’s not my spoon of ice-cream, but thanks.

hillbillyjim on January 28, 2012 at 10:30 AM

hillbillyjim on January 28, 2012 at 10:30 AM

:(

I still like ya

DHChron on January 28, 2012 at 10:37 AM

it would be different if barry would apply this extra money toward the deficit but his plan is to spend, spend or help his cronies.

DiabloAzure on January 28, 2012 at 11:18 AM

it would be different if barry would apply this extra money toward the deficit but his plan is to spend, spend or help his cronies.

DiabloAzure on January 28, 2012 at 11:18 AM

The problem with that is this “extra money” will never materialize as people and corporations move capital overseas to more tax-friendly environments, thus reducing the net tax income for the treasury.

They can’t all be stupid enough not to realize the truth to this.

It’s all about the class warfare, and getting re-elected. Period.

hillbillyjim on January 28, 2012 at 11:26 AM

We have always known this is just silly gimmick to get Obama re-elected. Dems controlled the whole government for Obama’s first 2 years and couldn’t pass the “Buffett rule”, in fact, they couldn’t even get all the dems to agree to it. They know it will never pass now and therefor can only be used as a campaign ploy.

Dollayo on January 28, 2012 at 11:53 AM

This is one of the key reasons for our current exonomic stagnation.

American corporations are sitting on record, unprecedented amounts of cash and there are still geniuses who believe that it’s high corporate tax rates that are preventing economic growth. Did you ever consider the role of consumer demand? Truly amazing.

bayam on January 28, 2012 at 12:23 PM

American corporations are sitting on record, unprecedented amounts of cash and there are still geniuses who believe that it’s high corporate tax rates that are preventing economic growth. Did you ever consider the role of consumer demand? Truly amazing.

bayam on January 28, 2012 at 12:23 PM

That cash is not being invested for many reasons; one of the main reasons is the uncertain regulatory environment that this bunch of incompetents has fostered. Another is taxes. Another is no faith in the direction in which our country is headed.

Did you ever consider that the role of consumer demand is dictated in a large measure by employment, job security, and trust in our government to do what is right for all of us?

It is, in fact, a few who get the grease and the many who get zip — but it’s not the so-called 1 percenters skimming the gravy. It’s the squeaky wheels that the Democrats have pandered to again and again who get thrown a bone, and then come back for some more scraps rather than demanding an actual even playing field in a FREE free market economy where opportunity abounds.

“Truly amazing.”

Try again.

hillbillyjim on January 28, 2012 at 12:46 PM

These guys have expensive lawyers for just this reason. You add more taxes, they add more deductions or find more places to invest. Its a complete charade in order to win political points.

Obama has shown he does not care about fairness in the least, just social justice and political power.

Anyone going to bring up the fact that true fairness would be everyone paying some taxes towards the government bill. Not making the people who already pay most of the country’s expenses, pay even more.

How does that pass as fairness?

alecj on January 28, 2012 at 1:28 PM

You kmow what else would lower the deficit by around four percent? Cutting federal spending by around four percent.

hopeful on January 28, 2012 at 1:36 PM

It wouldn’t reduce jack crap by any percentage point until the powers that be CUT real spending. Until then, talk about raising taxes is nothing but a diversion.

TQM38a on January 28, 2012 at 1:38 PM

What’s the saddest part of this? That The One is so desperate to demagogue Romney and the GOP as the party of the rich that he’d make a chump-change gambit like this the centerpiece of his budget agenda? Or that liberals are pretending to be impressed? Good lord, I hope they’re pretending.

OTOH, as offensive as it is, politically this should be the kind of thing that the GOP goes along with. Take that “the GOP won’t work with us” crap off the table and for a small price. Let the donkeys demagogue about “fairness” and show that it ain’t gonna do anybody any good. There are better fights to pick than being painted as “defending the rich” over what really is a hill of beans.

MJBrutus on January 28, 2012 at 3:03 PM

Washington is a junkie and money is its’ drug.

rocrio15 on January 28, 2012 at 3:07 PM

Since this would fund about 4 days worth of federal spending, how about if Republicans start referring to it as “the 4 day tax”? A lot of casual voters don’t understand how trivial this tax would be as a percentage of federal revenue. If it is repeatedly referred to as THE 4 DAY TAX in ads and speeches, the relatively minor impact might sink in.

talkingpoints on January 28, 2012 at 5:06 PM

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