WH class-warfare argument for the “not class warfare” Buffett Rule

posted at 9:51 am on April 13, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Just two weeks ago, Barack Obama insisted that the Buffett Rule that he is pushing has nothing to do with class warfare — no, not a bit.  As he has consistently argued since first proposing the surtax on income earned over a certain threshold (originally $250,000 per year, later raised to $1 million), Obama said in his weekly address on March 31st that it’s all about fairness and budget discipline:

That’s not fair.  It doesn’t make any sense.  Do we want to keep giving tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans like me, or Warren Buffett, or Bill Gates – people who don’t need them and never asked for them?  Or do we want to keep investing in things that will grow our economy and keep us secure?  Because we can’t afford to do both.

Now, some people call this class warfare.  But I think asking a billionaire to pay at least the same tax rate as his secretary is just common sense.  We don’t envy success in this country.  We aspire to it.  But we also believe that anyone who does well for themselves should do their fair share in return, so that more people have the opportunity to get ahead – not just a few.

First, as we have noted on several occasions, the Buffett Rule will raise — at best — less than $5 billion a year, and as little as $3 billion.  Put that against the monster deficits that Obama has run over the last three years and the monster deficits he proposes to run in the near-to-midterm future, and the claim that this is all about investment is ludicrous.  Obama spent $3 billion in three weeks on Cash for Clunkers, which did for the auto economy what all of his other gimmicks did for the rest of it.  The revenue from the Buffett Rule in the best case scenario will cover two whole days of deficits in Obama’s proposed FY2013 budget ($5 billion against a $900 billion deficit).

Put that aside for the moment, and put aside the fact that highest-income earners do in fact pay a much higher median effective tax rate than middle-class earners do, which negates the entire argument anyway.  Let’s just take on the oft-repeated claim from Obama that this isn’t class warfare, apart from the fact that the rest of his argument is factually deficient.  What kind of argument does the White House make on its website for the Buffett Rule?  Last September, Gene Sperling offered this argument on fairness, which was caught by blogger Jeryl Bier recently:

And, at the margin, a middle-class family can pay 15 percent, 25 percent or 28 percent of what they earn in income taxes — plus additional payroll taxes on top of that. That’s far higher than the less than 15 percent of income in federal taxes that some of the most well-off Americans pay. Does it seem right that an American who makes over $110 million pays an effective tax rate of about 18 percent, but if they had a fire at their house, those who would be risking their lives to put the fire out, could be seeing far more taken out of their every additional dollar earned while they are risking their lives?

Note the construct of “can pay” in this argument.  There is a wide range of what taxpayers can pay in taxes, based on a large number of factors — how they earned the money (salary, capital gains, etc), renters or homeowners, single or married, children in the household or not, retirement investment, medical bills … the list goes on and on almost endlessly.  That’s why we use median effective tax rates, and as I wrote yesterday, this is the data:

Never mind that the top one percent already pay a much higher median effective tax rate at 29.6%, as the President’s own economists noted this year, more than double that of midrange earners’ 13.3%.

But the argument itself is nothing more than a class-warfare call to arms.  The peasants are dying for the rich! Gene Sperling cries, using hypotheticals built on hypotheticals — and using a pretty dumb argument anyway.  Firefighters do this work voluntarily; no one drafts them into the job.  Also, while some firefighters might pay a higher effective tax rate than the person owning a house on fire, that salary gets paid by other taxpayers — including the people whose house would be burning in this scenario, whose property taxes are almost certainly much higher than those of the middle class.  That doesn’t take anything away from the bravery and sacrifice of the firefighters, but it is the job they voluntarily pursued, and they do get paid by these same taxpayers to do it.  If compensation fairness is the issue, then the local jurisdiction would be the proper place to discuss it, and not in federal surtaxes.

The Buffett Rule and its White House apologetics are nothing but class warfare — and vapid class warfare at that, and even worse economics.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

apoogetics

Where’s my Websters!?

BobMbx on April 13, 2012 at 9:53 AM

The President is stoopid…

I really think sometimes that he forgets what county is in. The first non-American President.

Oil Can on April 13, 2012 at 9:54 AM

The libs have never been able to adequately define “fair”; it’s usually something along the lines of what constitutes too much global warming.

Bishop on April 13, 2012 at 9:57 AM

these guys use the word “fairness” as if it is a virtue. It is not, nor is it used properly.

ted c on April 13, 2012 at 9:57 AM

The Buffett Rule and its White House apoogetics are nothing but class warfare — and vapid class warfare at that, and even worse economics.

All this from a man who claims his spouse “had to” work because they couldn’t make it on his $162K salary. I’m happy to see that everything this bastard touches these days falls apart. Class warfare- fail. War on Women- fail. Obamacare- presumptive fail if the SCOTUS doesn’t go political. Mitt Romney’s got his work cut out for him come January.

Happy Nomad on April 13, 2012 at 9:58 AM

I am so tired of this BS….

ladyingray on April 13, 2012 at 9:58 AM

Never mind that the top one percent already pay a much higher median effective tax rate at 29.6%, as the President’s own economists noted this year, more than double that of midrange earners’ 13.3%.

I use turbo tax, and when you finish and print your return, it spits out an information sheet about your federal and state taxes.

One of the items it lists is called “effective tax rate”.

I make over $100k in salary, and my effective tax rate for 2011 is 8.81%.

Not only did I pay less money than Buffet did, I also paid at a much lower rate.

Maths is hard.

BobMbx on April 13, 2012 at 9:59 AM

these guys use the word “fairness” as if it is a virtue. It is not, nor is it used properly.

ted c on April 13, 2012 at 9:57 AM

“Fairness” is right up there with “economic justice” as liberal code words for stealing from the productive to fund the welfare culture of the left.

Happy Nomad on April 13, 2012 at 9:59 AM

and the claim that this is all about investment is ludicrous.

Shouldn’t we be getting some interest or dividends or something by now on our investments? Has there been any appreciation in the value of our investments? We could always sell our investments, and pay down some debt, right?

forest on April 13, 2012 at 9:59 AM

Is the argument that Republicans don’t engage in class warfare on behalf of the wealthy? I’m pretty sure that Ronald Reagan nearly ran his entire Presidential campaigns against Linda Taylor.

libfreeordie on April 13, 2012 at 10:00 AM

Socialism: A NASA budget with a final destination of nowhere.

EMD on April 13, 2012 at 10:00 AM

Does this make sense? A billionaire owes the government hundreds of milions of dollars for a corporation he owns and Obama wants to tax millionaires for taxes that will not be as much as the billionaire owes by naming it the the Buffet Rule. The incompetence of the spoiled brat is becoming too obvious.

volsense on April 13, 2012 at 10:00 AM

To a hammer, the whole world is a nail.

jukin3 on April 13, 2012 at 10:02 AM

“Fairness” just means “I’m taking this” in lib-speak.

Washington Nearsider on April 13, 2012 at 10:03 AM

I simply cannot stomach listening to this boob anymore. I vow today that the only time I will ever listen to him attentively is when he gives his concession speech this November.

Logic on April 13, 2012 at 10:04 AM

Another non-solution to a non-problem.

Because the real problems are above his paygrade.

NoDonkey on April 13, 2012 at 10:04 AM

Shouldn’t we be getting some interest or dividends or something by now on our investments? Has there been any appreciation in the value of our investments? We could always sell our investments, and pay down some debt, right?

forest on April 13, 2012 at 9:59 AM

I don’t believe you don’t understand that Obama is using the rhetoric of investment as a metaphor for thinking about the relationship between a strong and vibrant middle class and nation-wide growth, higher qualities of life and a safer, longer lived and stable society. This would make it an investment that can’t be immediately quantified. If you don’t believe in the notion that there is value in life outside of the monetary then do you really think there should be any governance outside of corporations?

libfreeordie on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

For this strategy to work he has to convince people that it is up to the rich to pay down the govt. debt that politicians created while they offer not one single dime of govt. spending cuts except from the military.

NeoKong on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

I am so tired of this BS….

ladyingray on April 13, 2012 at 9:58 AM

Me too. It’s relentless. I wonder what the next round of hogwash will be?

forest on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

Ed… Ed… Ed…

It’s not Class Warfare.

It’s Class Warfare on Acid.

First you cast the class warfare rhetoric. Then you hear your own voice echo for miles.

Then you convince yourself it’s not REAL.

Washington Fancy on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

This is clearly nothing more than class warfare, at best. At worst, this is Obama wanting to raise the capital gains rate for all Americans.

Ang again, I just do not understand this notion that anyone should be paying their “fair share.” If people who dont make much want more, instead of relying on government, maybe they should stop being content with a crappy job that pays little. However, to argue that instead of encouraging people to try to strive for jobs that pay more, the government should just supplement their income and have the rich pay their “fair share” is just wrong. And Romney needs to forcefully make this point.

Oh, and if Obama, Buffett, Gates, and other rich Democrats want to pay their “fair share,” they can simply STFU and have a bigger portion of their pay checks given to the IRS.

Literally, there is nothing that stops Warren Buffett from doing one of 2 things:

1. Giving up to 100% of his salary to the IRS, or
2. Paying the rate he pays now, and giving 100% of everything else he has to charity.

milcus on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

I simply cannot stomach listening to this boob anymore. I vow today that the only time I will ever listen to him attentively is when he gives his concession speech this November.

Logic on April 13, 2012 at 10:04 AM

His (imminent) fistpounding RAVING rant will be classic. “YOU HAVE PROVEN UNWORTHY OF MEEEE….”

wildcat72 on April 13, 2012 at 10:06 AM

Well, it is a classless war.

LoganSix on April 13, 2012 at 10:06 AM

fair is a word that should be relegated to children under six years old after that you are just retarded if you use it.

tom daschle concerned on April 13, 2012 at 10:08 AM

I vow today that the only time I will ever listen to him attentively is when he gives his concession speech this November.

Logic on April 13, 2012 at 10:04 AM

Here’s a hint as to what it will sound like: You’re all racists, and I’m amazing.

Washington Nearsider on April 13, 2012 at 10:09 AM

I make over $100k in salary, and my effective tax rate for 2011 is 8.81%.

Not only did I pay less money than Buffet did, I also paid at a much lower rate.

Maths is hard.

BobMbx on April 13, 2012 at 9:59 AM

Wow! I’m doing something wrong. I paid 18.5%. You must have 12 kids, or the Tim Geithner version of Turbo Tax.

Alabama Infidel on April 13, 2012 at 10:09 AM

While we know that everything Obama says is a lie, it is good to have that demonstrated once in awhile.

GaltBlvnAtty on April 13, 2012 at 10:10 AM

Shouldn’t we be getting some interest or dividends or something by now on our investments? Has there been any appreciation in the value of our investments? We could always sell our investments, and pay down some debt, right?

forest on April 13, 2012 at 9:59 AM
I don’t believe you don’t understand that Obama is using the rhetoric of investment as a metaphor for thinking about the relationship between a strong and vibrant middle class and nation-wide growth, higher qualities of life and a safer, longer lived and stable society. This would make it an investment that can’t be immediately quantified. If you don’t believe in the notion that there is value in life outside of the monetary then do you really think there should be any governance outside of corporations?

libfreeordie on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

Short answer: you get nothing, Forest.

NoDonkey on April 13, 2012 at 10:11 AM

And yet again I propose the SWalker Rule: Increase taxes 1000 percent on all politicians and Federal Employes. It will actually reduce the debt without discouraged capital investment in Business.

SWalker on April 13, 2012 at 10:11 AM

Increase taxes 1000 percent on all politicians

Unless we target the marginal rates on bribes and kickbacks, that’s a non-starter.

NoDonkey on April 13, 2012 at 10:13 AM

It’s the only war he knows how to fight.

docflash on April 13, 2012 at 10:14 AM

Shouldn’t we be getting some interest or dividends or something by now on our investments? Has there been any appreciation in the value of our investments? We could always sell our investments, and pay down some debt, right?

forest on April 13, 2012 at 9:59 AM
I don’t believe you don’t understand that Obama is using the rhetoric of investment as a metaphor for thinking about the relationship between a strong and vibrant middle class and nation-wide growth, higher qualities of life and a safer, longer lived and stable society. This would make it an investment that can’t be immediately quantified. If you don’t believe in the notion that there is value in life outside of the monetary then do you really think there should be any governance outside of corporations?

libfreeordie on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

So Obama was wrong. It won’t take two terms to see a return on our investment, it will take a generation or two?

Give us all your money so that things can be better. Someday. Somehow.

Washington Nearsider on April 13, 2012 at 10:16 AM

The Buffett Rule and its White House apologetics are nothing but class warfare — and vapid class warfare at that, and even worse economics.

..remember…
………these are the same idiots that claim Food Stamps and Unemployment Benefits “put people to work and energize the economy.”….

You can’t fix stupid.

Baxter Greene on April 13, 2012 at 10:17 AM

He received a B.A. in political science from the University of Minnesota

Which would explain being a total economic retard. I take it the Walter F Mondale School of Poli Sci Tarddom doesn’t teach the advanced concept of business taxation, and how it is assumed that if your business is taxed, we don’t fully double tax you at the personal level also?

The amount of sheer stupid coming out of America’s Schools of Political Science dwarfs the stupid coming out of any other major.

MNHawk on April 13, 2012 at 10:18 AM

Now, some people call this class warfare. But I think asking a billionaire to pay at least the same tax rate as his secretary is just common sense. We don’t envy success in this country. We aspire to it. But we also believe that anyone who does well for themselves should do their fair share in return, so that more people have the opportunity to get ahead – not just a few.

So the argument here is that “spreading the wealth around” will give others the opportunity to get ahead. Who the hell ever got ahead waiting for government handouts?

Bitter Clinger on April 13, 2012 at 10:21 AM

The amount of sheer stupid coming out of America’s Schools of Political Science dwarfs the stupid coming out of any other major.

MNHawk on April 13, 2012 at 10:18 AM

I have a BA in Political Science (International Politics) from Penn State. It wasn’t my time in school that brought me to the right, it was my life experiences.

That said, I’d argue the Gender Studies majors have the ‘stupid’ market cornered.

Washington Nearsider on April 13, 2012 at 10:21 AM

To a hammer, the whole world is a nail.
jukin3 on April 13, 2012 at 10:02 AM

Obooba’s not a hammer he’s a screwdriver.

Akzed on April 13, 2012 at 10:22 AM

Give us all your money so that things can be better. Someday. Somehow.

Washington Nearsider on April 13, 2012 at 10:16 AM

Results may vary.

NoDonkey on April 13, 2012 at 10:24 AM

the issue is massive out of control spending

in addition those paying lower tax rates on capital gains already paid higher rates on the initial income – tax twice – call it injustice

audiotom on April 13, 2012 at 10:25 AM

Do we want to keep giving tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans like me, or Warren Buffett, or Bill Gates – people who don’t need them and never asked for them?

How splendid that this disgusting narcissist and former communiy agitator groups himself in with Buffett and Gates as among the wealthiest of Americans. Obama’s “wealth” is but a drop in the ocean as compared to those two, but in his mind he is “like” them.

TXUS on April 13, 2012 at 10:25 AM

I’m pretty sure that Ronald Reagan nearly ran his entire Presidential campaigns against Linda Taylor.

libfreeordie on April 13, 2012 at 10:00 AM

Give us an example, any example, of Reagan actually mentioning her by name. You can’t, because he never did.

Actually, her story was first exposed to America by the “newspaper” that endorsed Reagan’s opponent.

Del Dolemonte on April 13, 2012 at 10:27 AM

***

If you don’t believe in the notion that there is value in life outside of the monetary then do you really think there should be any governance outside of corporations?

libfreeordie on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

Government should provide for our defense, a court system, and some other things. On the national level, it shouldn’t be involved in education or so much social engineering.

Liberals talking about investments means flushing money down the toilet on obscure notions that real people couldn’t give a rat’s a** about.

BuckeyeSam on April 13, 2012 at 10:30 AM

“Fairness”…what’s your’s…is mine!

KOOLAID2 on April 13, 2012 at 10:35 AM

Results may vary.

NoDonkey on April 13, 2012 at 10:24 AM

Which is why people hesitate to ‘invest’ so unbelievably heavily in these ‘maybe’ programs the Dems keep churning out.

Obama tells us that hesitation means they’re racists and hate old people.

Washington Nearsider on April 13, 2012 at 10:36 AM

Hey Barry! How about that corporate jet tax? Wouldn’t that also “be fair”? Despite what Good Ol’ Warren says. And speaking of Good Ol’ Warren – when is BH going to pay up on that ONE BILLION in back taxes owed?

GarandFan on April 13, 2012 at 10:44 AM

I love how liberals always talk about firefighters and police and schools and roads as things we need government to provide – when every one of these is provided by local government and paid for with highly regressive property taxes, except for roads which are paid for with gasoline taxes. Warren Buffett’s taxes aren’t going to pay for any of that stuff, they are going to pay for 2 million federal workers, and free health care for mostly well-off old people.

rockmom on April 13, 2012 at 10:55 AM

Never a good idea to handle nitro glycerin this way when shaking from being scolded by Mom.

Bmore on April 13, 2012 at 11:09 AM

Why don’t Buffet, Gates, Obama, and co. just pay the extra taxes, and then just STFU?

What exactly is stopping them from paying 99% of their money to the IRS?

shanimal on April 13, 2012 at 11:13 AM

The UK put an extra surcharge on the wealthy and instead of getting more money, revenues went DOWN.
Same will happen here, so is Obummer doing this for the debt or for class warfare? The evidence is clear – you decide.

Purpose and reality af actual revenues aside, the extra $5 Billion they expect to get from the wealthy (the job creators) – do you really think the government will do something better with it than what those individuals would do with it on their own?
This means $5 Billion LESS available to hire people, expand or build companies, loan to people for houses or cars, and even for those people to directly spend on buying products and services that other people are employed to provide.

dentarthurdent on April 13, 2012 at 11:22 AM

I’m about sick and tired of this “fairness” BS. Life isn’t fair. Nothing anybody does is ever going to make it fair. There will always be rich, and there will always be poor. Fact. Deal with it.

Children in public schools are having this concept that life should be fair shoved down their throats to the point where they are ill-equipped to deal with real life when they get out of school (see OWS). My husband is a student at Boise State, and is constantly telling me about episodes in class, where the students seem to think that they should be spoon fed, and given an “A’, whether they do the class work or not.

Life is not fair libbies. Get an effing clue already. Even if you got your socialist uptopia, there would STILL be inequality. Even if everybody was equally as poor as everybody else, you’d STILL have “all animals are equal, but some are more equal than others (the latter being those in gov’t)”.

And just WTF does Barry know about “budget discipline”???

/rant off

sage0925 on April 13, 2012 at 11:39 AM

So far under 0bama’s reign of economic incompetence our investment payback for his investments has been a record loss of household wealth and two notches off our government debt. INVEST AWAY!!

Thank you Presidebt 0bama!

jukin3 on April 13, 2012 at 11:41 AM

If anyone thought that the government would actually be responsible with our tax dollars… you know, like paying off the near $16 trillion in debt… then many people might be ok with paying a few more dollars in taxes.

But we all know the government won’t do that. Give them more money, and they will simply spend more money. They will continue to borrow the same amount they are borrowing now, and then take the extra money they think they will get from increased taxes (ignoring the part where increased tax rates historically and almost inevitably lead to less revenue as people find ways to avoid those taxes) and go and spend it on some new pet project.

That’s the biggest farce in this whole thing… the idea they keep trying to sell us on… that increased tax revenues will be used to mitigate deficit spending, when we know damn well they will simply spend more when given more. When have they ever done otherwise?

gravityman on April 13, 2012 at 11:42 AM

classic Obama from 2008
this buffet rule has the ultimate intent of raising capital gains taxes for all investors

GIBSON: All right. You have, however, said you would favor an increase in the capital gains tax. As a matter of fact, you said on CNBC, and I quote, “I certainly would not go above what existed under Bill Clinton,” which was 28 percent. It’s now 15 percent. That’s almost a doubling, if you went to 28 percent.

But actually, Bill Clinton, in 1997, signed legislation that dropped the capital gains tax to 20 percent.

OBAMA: Right.

GIBSON: And George Bush has taken it down to 15 percent.

OBAMA: Right.

GIBSON: And in each instance, when the rate dropped, revenues from the tax increased; the government took in more money. And in the 1980s, when the tax was increased to 28 percent, the revenues went down.

So why raise it at all, especially given the fact that 100 million people in this country own stock and would be affected?

OBAMA: Well, Charlie, what I’ve said is that I would look at raising the capital gains tax for purposes of fairness. ….

GIBSON: But history shows that when you drop the capital gains tax, the revenues go up.

OBAMA: Well, that might happen, or it might not. It depends on what’s happening on Wall Street and how business is going….

audiotom on April 13, 2012 at 11:49 AM

Maybe those secretaries need to find bette accountants.

Kissmygrits on April 13, 2012 at 12:00 PM

better.

Kissmygrits on April 13, 2012 at 12:00 PM

Capital gains and dividends should be taxed at a lower rate because that money invested is at risk, and can and often is lost entirely. The lower tax rate balances that risk. The deduction of capital losses is a weak remedy because they can only be deducted from future capital gains or a lousy $3,000 a year against other income.

Those greedy progs have not thought through all the consequences of these bad ideas. Investments have a projected rate of return, and if higher taxation drives that lower, it means fewer of those investments will be made.

What if this greedy tax drives your company’s owner into a loss situation that means he has to lay off people, like maybe you? What if the lowered rate-of-return means your 401K stagnates? What if your greedy union’s pension plan returns drop off a cliff because of this greedy policy?

slickwillie2001 on April 13, 2012 at 12:09 PM

How ironic is it that the Dems put so much value in “science” when it comes to supposed global warming and say Republicans are denying the supposedly proven science, but when they are presented with the “science” of economics as it relates to taxes and revenues they are suddenly such skeptics in spite of all the evidence?

gravityman on April 13, 2012 at 12:14 PM

libfreeordie on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

Obama uses the word “investment” as a substitute for “spending” because it poll tests better. It’s not an appropriate substitute and it’s not a “metaphor” as you put it. It’s just more BS.

forest on April 13, 2012 at 12:14 PM

How ironic is it that the Dems put so much value in “science” when it comes to supposed global warming and say Republicans are denying the supposedly proven science, but when they are presented with the “science” of economics as it relates to taxes and revenues they are suddenly such skeptics in spite of all the evidence?

gravityman on April 13, 2012 at 12:14 PM

I think we should start labeling them “economics deniers”.

dentarthurdent on April 13, 2012 at 1:02 PM

It’s not class warfare…it’s just coincidence that those who are specifically singled out for having lots of money happen to be those with lots of money.

BlueCollarAstronaut on April 13, 2012 at 1:03 PM

The simple reality is that while Soros, Buffett, Gates and such do understand money very well, liberals — politicians and base alike — do not.

Obama’s campaign on this issue has been false from the start. Leave everything else aside (and that is a lot to push into the margins) for the moment, the issue is not “rate” but “revenue”; 10% of 100 is a lot less than 10% of 1000. The question then must become: what does Buffett actually pay (all taxes considered), and what does his secretary actually pay? Let Buffett and his secretary release their tax returns for the last ten years and let’s find out.

UnrepentantCurmudgeon on April 13, 2012 at 1:14 PM

I don’t believe you don’t understand that Obama is using the rhetoric of investment as a metaphor for thinking about the relationship between a strong and vibrant middle class and nation-wide growth, higher qualities of life and a safer, longer lived and stable society. This would make it an investment that can’t be immediately quantified. If you don’t believe in the notion that there is value in life outside of the monetary then do you really think there should be any governance outside of corporations?

libfreeordie on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

And the government creates that? Really? Only if the government does the vast majority or all of the hiring! Even with over 15 million government employees, 10 times that work in the private sector.

Who created the companies that provide those jobs, from the mom and pop bakery to the large corporation? Government? Yeah, sometimes tax incentives and government LOANS helped, but it took the sweat and hard work of people WITH MONEY and the desire to put in 80+ hours a week to get the thing started. You libs want to take more money from these job creators and GIVE it, not loan it, not require work for it, not put limit it, but GIVE it to people who CAN but WON’T put in the work to succeed on their own.

Government spending doesn’t help the middle class! Taxing the rich doesn’t help the middle class! It creates higher unemployment, less investment in new business and gets wasted. It costs 62 cents for the government to spend a dollar, while it costs the private sector about a dime per dollar in overhead.

Government is providing more than a safety net, it’s supporting generation after generation of dependence. Why get off the government teat? I see more flat screen TVs in section 8 housing than ever. There’s no incentive in government programs to get off, because libs tell them “The money will never end!”.

Even if we taxed everybody over $250,000 at 100%, and that includes a married teacher and firefighter couple in New York, we could only pay for this monstrous Democratic spending for ONE YEAR. You would have to DOUBLE their tax rate to pay for the current annual deficit, and in the process take almost 10% of GDP out of the economy, kneecapping investment, hiring, business growth.

But you probably think rich people are all like Scrooge McDuck, with their money in gold coins in some giant swimming pool/vault. It couldn’t be farther from the truth. The rich take their money and start new business, invest in other people’s new and existing business, fund inventors, AND GIVE TO CHARITIES that LIFT people up and help them help themselves. In that voluntary system the charities are accountable, and won’t continue to get money if they are wasting it, not helping people out of their condition, etc. With forced government tax extraction, there is no accountability, and as I know from working in government, the government agencies are more interested in growing their staff count, than being accountable to anybody.

So in summary, the only middle class people helped by government spending are the government workers themselves, while the private sector becomes a more and more difficult place to find a job and get yourself into the middle class, and investment and growth gets shredded.

PastorJon on April 13, 2012 at 1:15 PM

The President earned under $1M, so he doesn’t qualify for the Buffet Rule. Now, we have further that Mr. Biden earned only 1/3rd of what Mr. Obama did, but paid a higher tax rate (23%) than Mr. Obama’s 21%

Mr. Obama needs to address the disparity in his tax rate as opposed to Mr. Biden’s.

Shouldn’t there be an Obama Rule — which says that the President must pay at least as much proportionally in taxes on his income as the Vice President? In fact, we could extend this rule to apply to all federal employees — which would put Mr. Obama certainly in the place where both his foot and his mouth are.

Let’s see. Biden paid 87900/379035 or about 23.1904705% in federal income taxes. Obama paid 162074/789674. The disparity in taxes is 1.129910512. Therefore, Mr. Obama owes another (162074*.129910512) dollars, or about $21,055 if he is to match Mr. Biden in terms of largess to our biggest employer. How about paying up, chump?

unclesmrgol on April 13, 2012 at 1:27 PM

What if this greedy tax drives your company’s owner into a loss situation that means he has to lay off people, like maybe you? What if the lowered rate-of-return means your 401K stagnates? What if your greedy union’s pension plan returns drop off a cliff because of this greedy policy?

slickwillie2001 on April 13, 2012 at 12:09 PM

And libs want to kill old people too! When the stock market crashes from the attack on investment, it will hurt the pensions of millions of retired Americans, not just union.

I know, used their hyperbole. Just to make a point that millions of old people live off of the dividends (which come from PROFIT, another evil in the eyes of libs) and the growth of their stocks (which require investment with risk that will go down with higher capital gains taxes . . .).

PastorJon on April 13, 2012 at 1:29 PM

As a sure sign of the effect of Mr. Obama’s own policies, we have that, in 2009, he earned $5.5M. In 2010, he earned $1.7M. Now, in 2011, he earned $790K.

Played backwards, we have the American Dream. Played forward, we have Obama’s Dream.

unclesmrgol on April 13, 2012 at 1:32 PM

I have a BA in Political Science (International Politics) from Penn State. It wasn’t my time in school that brought me to the right, it was my life experiences.

That said, I’d argue the Gender Studies majors have the ‘stupid’ market cornered.

Washington Nearsider on April 13, 2012 at 10:21 AM

I have a BA in Poli Sci from UCLA. Attending “Berkley South” is the reason I am a conservative today. Even at 18 I realized that the left was and is a bankrupt ideology. It is an ideology based in emotion not reason and shows a lack of understanding in human nature. For them Utopia is always just right around the corner. Sad really.

Meat Fighter on April 13, 2012 at 1:47 PM

I don’t believe you don’t understand that Obama is using the rhetoric of investment as a metaphor for thinking about the relationship between a strong and vibrant middle class and nation-wide growth, higher qualities of life and a safer, longer lived and stable society. This would make it an investment that can’t be immediately quantified. If you don’t believe in the notion that there is value in life outside of the monetary then do you really think there should be any governance outside of corporations?

libfreeordie on April 13, 2012 at 10:05 AM

We’re broke. Drop the stupidity.

Chuck Schick on April 13, 2012 at 2:09 PM

The stupidity — it burns!

The whole firefighter thing is even more idiotic because, in most places, they’re paid for with property taxes. So a guy with a two million dollar mansion pays 10x what a guy with a $200K house would in the first place.

cthulhu on April 13, 2012 at 2:48 PM