Green Room

Video: Howard Dean Tells the (Ugly) Truth on Taxes

posted at 4:09 pm on December 6, 2012 by

Dean, on MSNBC:  ”This is initially going to seem like heresy from a progressive.  The truth is everybody needs to pay more taxes, not just the rich.”


MSNBC contributor Krystal Ball (real name) agrees, offering a somewhat muted note of concern about “timing:”

If we’re going to continue to make the promises and keep the promises that I think are so important…we probably will have to raise taxes on a lot of people.  But it’s a question of timing of when do we want to make those choices?”

As I wrote at Townhall, Dean and Ball are correct about the widespread consequences of their ideology.  They’re wrong, however, about the capacity of the federal government to “keep the promises” it’s making, even via mammoth across-the-board tax hikes:

When the accrued expenses of the government’s entitlement programs are counted, it becomes clear that to collect enough tax revenue just to avoid going deeper into debt would require over $8 trillion in tax collections annually. That is the total of the average annual accrued liabilities of just the two largest entitlement programs, plus the annual cash deficit. Nothing like that $8 trillion amount is available for the IRS to target. According to the most recent tax data, all individuals filing tax returns in America and earning more than $66,193 per year have a total adjusted gross income of $5.1 trillion. In 2006, when corporate taxable income peaked before the recession, all corporations in the U.S. had total income for tax purposes of $1.6 trillion. That comes to $6.7 trillion available to tax from these individuals and corporations under existing tax laws. In short, if the government confiscated the entire adjusted gross income of these American taxpayers, plus all of the corporate taxable income in the year before the recession, it wouldn’t be nearly enough to fund the over $8 trillion per year in the growth of U.S. liabilities. Some public officials and pundits claim we can dig our way out through tax increases on upper-income earners, or even all taxpayers.  In reality, that would amount to bailing out the Pacific Ocean with a teaspoon. Only by addressing these unsustainable spending commitments can the nation’s debt and deficit problems be solved.

The video above features liberals discussing their grand plans with other liberals, safely ensconced within the Lean Forward cocoon.  Much higher taxes for everyone, much more federal spending, and deficit reduction as an afterthought, at best.  Ball actually describes it as an undesirable undertaking.  Are you ready for this brave new (unsustainable) world, America?

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Dean, on MSNBC: ”This is initially going to seem like heresy from a progressive. The truth is everybody needs to pay more taxes, not just the rich.”

Uh Dr. Dean ?
A Progresive raising taxes is most definately NOT heresy.

You’re born with the affliction.

Jabberwock on December 6, 2012 at 4:35 PM

If we’re going to continue to make the promises and keep the promises that I think are so important…we probably will have to raise taxes on a lot of people. But it’s a question of timing of when do we want to make those choices?”

Yep. It’s all in the timing. I like how she say “when do WE want to make those choices?” Sadly, the on air talent on MSNBC probably does have a lot of input regarding Obama policy.

Night Owl on December 6, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Jabber, I think Dean is just pointing out that he’s stepping out of line with the prevailing “progressive” obsession with head-in-the-sand “soak the rich” mania. Liberal elites know this window-dressing will make their base feel good (“morale boost to the middle class”), but will fall far short of the revenues they need to fuel ever-higher spending. He’s engaging in “heresy” for the moment…knowing full well than many others aren’t far behind.

Guy Benson on December 6, 2012 at 4:41 PM

The heresy is a Progressive telling the truth about it.

Jabberwock on December 6, 2012 at 4:42 PM

Guy Benson on December 6, 2012 at 4:41 PM

Probably correct. Obama just giving the base a bit of a pain killer prior to the real operation.

Jabberwock on December 6, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Guy Benson on December 6, 2012 at 4:41 PM

.
Probably correct. Obama just giving the base a bit of a pain killer prior to the real operation.

Jabberwock on December 6, 2012 at 4:46 PM

.
That’s what Clinton did in 1993. What was it, about a month after his innauguration?
.
Approximate quote:

“I never worked so hard in my life, as I did trying to not raise taxes on the middle class. But I couldn’t find a way.”

listens2glenn on December 6, 2012 at 6:54 PM

I think the dominant progressive view is that we can return to the 90% rates of the 1950s, tax capital gains as income, cut defense and have enough money to fund all of these programs.

Visit a few liberal/left sites on this. That’s the view held by many; not all but a lot of them.

To his credit, Dean knows that this won’t do it.

SteveMG on December 6, 2012 at 7:12 PM

Soak the rich everyone.

ZK on December 7, 2012 at 8:08 AM

I think the dominant progressive view is that we can return to the 90% rates of the 1950s, tax capital gains as income, cut defense and have enough money to fund all of these programs.

SteveMG on December 6, 2012 at 7:12 PM

To add to an old saying, you can’t have European socialism with American tax rates and Mexican mass-migration.

Socialism is tricky enough when you’re dealing with a homogenous population. Try and socialize every Turd-Worlder who wanders in over the border and you’re screwed.

MelonCollie on December 7, 2012 at 11:10 AM