Democrats are such timid .... I'm so damned frustrated! Imagine! Raising the top marginal tax rate all the way back to Clinton's rates. Rates set during the longest peacetime economic growth in US history. Here's the thing. We are not at peace. We haven't been at peace for over a decade. Two unfunded wars have drained us dry. So now, faced with a financial crisis, (and everyone admits a major cause has been these wars) why are we not talking about finally instituting war time tax rates? Top marginal tax rates during WW I were gradually raised to 77% (1918) -- funding a third of the war. After the war was over, rates were lowered 5 times in the 1920's. Rates were raised again leading up to and during WW II. In 1941 the bottom rate was 23% while the rate on incomes over $1 million was 94% helping to fund our Lend/Lease Program and our war expenses.
After our current war is over and the defense budget has been reduced to a peacetime level, the economy has recovered from the Great Recession (the deficit is eliminated) rates can be reduced again.
Further, I don't buy that argument that capital gains deserve to be taxed at a lower rate than wages from working or my IRA distributions. What about small investors who cash in big winnings one year? Re-institute income averaging. This would also keep lotteries viable.
Since the top earners have done very well this past decade, and the rest of us haven't, it's time to ask those top earners to do their share. And it's time to stop asking seniors and others scraping by to do with less. We've given enough. So hands off my "entitlements".
There. I feel better.
Now of course, there's no chance in hell Democrats could pull this off. But it's all about how to frame the argument. Show the country what Republicans are demanding is entirely unreasonable.
IT IS NOT REASONABLE TO EXPECT THE POOR TO FUND THESE WARS!
Republicans will have won again if they get a "modest" 1 or 2% increase in top rates and the bulk of deficit reduction is put on the backs of the poor through entitlement reductions.
UPDATE: Removed the offending word from the title and Intro per complaints. I