ntang (ntang) wrote,


From Tapped (tapped_xml), here:

There's a surprisingly good New York Times article detailing the shocking news that the Bush tax cuts -- I'll bet you can guess it -- favor the wealthy. It goes a bit astray at the end:

But the report also gave Republicans support for their contention that tax reduction had brought some benefit to people in almost all income categories. People with the bottom fifth of income, for example, averaging earnings of only $16,620, saw their effective tax rate drop to 5.2 percent from 6.7. Yet because lower- and many middle-income families had been paying very little federal income tax in the first place, those in that bottom fifth of earnings received an average tax cut of only $250.

"It doesn't matter who you are, the report shows that you are better off now than you were before the tax cuts,'' said a House Republican aide. "It's showing that everybody's tax burden has gone down as a result of the tax cuts.'"

The tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 reduced tax rates for people in all income brackets.

That's fact-esque, but it leaves out the millions of Americans who, before the tax cut, already didn't pay any income tax. Those people still pay pretty hefty payroll taxes, and the Republican-passed bill only helps out some of them, and only helps out any of them because of provisions that were put in at the insistence of the Democrats. The tax shares dispute has been rendered somewhat irrelevant by the Kerry campaign's decision to advocate the repeal only of provisions that only help people making over $200,000 per year (it's important to note that the "middle class tax cuts" in the bill also apply to the rich, so that even under the Kerry plan a wealthy person would pay less tax than he did during the Clinton years -- when, as you may recall, the nation's crushing tax burden stifled economic growth and continued to do so until Bush took office and launched the current boom), but that's no problem for the president who can always make up some new mumbo-jumbo to fit the circumstances.
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