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Last week, House Speaker John Boehner proposed new revenue through no new taxes
Former Bush and Romney economic adviser Glenn Hubbard this morning:
Mitt Romney’s top economic adviser continued his post-election about-face on Monday, pushing for raising more tax revenue from the rich as a way to start paying down the federal deficit.

“Obviously, we would be better in my view if we didn’t raise taxes on anyone and we did everything on the spending side,” Glenn Hubbard, the dean of Columbia’s business school, said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “We just had an election. We’re going to have to have some compromise. And I think step one is figure out how to raise some revenue without killing the economy.”

So is this The Great Republican Capitulation? Nope, because there's a caveat—the same caveat that both John Boehner and Mitch McConnell have attached to their stated willingness to raise tax revenue:
Hubbard said revenue should only come in the form of eliminating deductions, not by increasing tax rates, as President Barack Obama has suggested.
In other words, as David Dayen noted last week, Hubbard and others like him aren't actually calling for higher taxes—in fact, they are calling for keeping the Bush tax cuts in place. Yes, they are adding lots of fluff about being interested in raising revenue through tax reform, but when guys whose entire economic ideology is built around the concept that cutting taxes creates economic growth start talking about higher tax revenue, your bullshit detector should start flashing.

The reason that these guys are trying to sound reasonable is that they hope they can convince Democrats to extend all Bush tax cuts—including for income over $250,000—in exchange for a promise to include additional revenue in tax reform. If Democrats made the mistake of believing them, these Republicans would certainly renege on their offer as soon as the Bush tax cuts got extended.

The fact that this is their strategy isn't a big secret. As conservative pundit Byron York put it last week, conservatives are "pretty nervous" about taxes. They oppose tax hikes but don't want to "find themselves in the position of defending tax cuts for the highest income brackets."

Republicans are in a weak position on taxes and they know it—the last thing they want to do after losing the election is to choose between holding middle-class taxes hostage and accepting a rate hike on the top 2 percent. And the reason that they are trying to sound reasonable on taxes without actually agreeing to increase them is that their only shot of avoiding that choice is to somehow convince Democrats that they've finally seen the light and will accept additional tax revenue as part of tax reform. But given that the GOP's biggest condition is that Democrats extend the Bush tax cuts on the wealthy, only a fool wouldn't be able to see through the Republican's latest gambit.

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Comment Preferences

  •  because they work in don't-make-sense world (7+ / 0-)

    An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

    by mightymouse on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:32:31 AM PST

    •  Because they want to cut taxes on the rich so (5+ / 0-)

      they can get revenue from the middle class and the poor.

      What they really want is to give $tuff to the rich, so they can get $tuff from the rich..

      •  It helps if you know this: (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        xenothaulus

        "R. Glenn Hubbard was the man instrumental in justifying the mortgage derivatives bubble that caused the Great Recession during the George W. Bush years.  
        He served as Romney's key economic adviser and was the front-runner to be the next Treasury secretary if Romney had won.  
        Mr. Hubbard was known as the principal architect of the Bush tax cuts.  

        While pocketing millions in fees from the financial industry that he was ostensibly studying as a neutral academic, Hubbard was an enthusiastic backer of the virtues of a burgeoning unregulated capital market that sold toxic derivatives to the world."

        [I put all of that in quotation marks because it's not original but I neglected to note where I found it.]

        To stand in silence when they should be protesting makes cowards out of men. -Abraham Lincoln

        by Eyesbright on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 12:17:43 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Why do we have elections? (13+ / 0-)

    No matter the outcome, Republicans act as if they've won.

    The choice of our lifetime: Mitt Romney, It Takes A Pillage or President Barack Obama, Forward Together.

    by FiredUpInCA on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:32:40 AM PST

    •  When they took the house..... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dharmafarmer, bryduck, ahumbleopinion

      ....they did win. That's because all they need to do to succeed is obstruct government. That automatically implements the Republican plan: no government.

      If you hate government, don't run for office in that government.

      by Bensdad on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:43:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Right. raise rates AND curb deductions. They (0+ / 0-)

       don't want to raise rates because it makes curbing deductions, bit by bit, easier to do.  So do it.

      GOP Wars against: Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Immigrants, Mexicans, Blacks, Gays, Women, Unions, Workers, Unemployed, Voters, Elderly, Kids, Poor, Sick, Disabled, Dying, Lovers, Kindness, Rationalism, Science, Sanity, Reality.

      by SGWM on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:44:02 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  the only compromise on their table right now... (8+ / 0-)
    revenue should only come in the form of eliminating deductions, not by increasing tax rates,
    all is well in groverland.....................wtf
  •  More revenue + no more taxes = printing money n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FiredUpInCA, skyounkin, nchristine

    "Daddy, every time a bell rings, a Libertaria­n picks up his Pan Am tickets for the Libertaria­n Paradise of East Somalia!"

    by unclebucky on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:33:29 AM PST

  •  When they insist on repackaging their garbage, (7+ / 0-)

    we throw them repackaged anchors.

    "And now we know that government by organized money is just as dangerous as government by organized mob." -- FDR

    by Mogolori on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:34:28 AM PST

    •  Here is an anchor. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mogolori, pdknz

      We offer to keep rates the same, but eliminate the "Capital Gains Loophole" and the "Capital Gains Deduction".

      Let them waste a few news cycles trying to explain that the low Capital Gains Rate isn't a "loophole" (which it really is). It will make them look stupider and greedier and bring the Cliff closer...

  •  eliminating deductions ... for the middle class (9+ / 0-)

    The Romney/Ryan plan.

    The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. -- John Kenneth Galbraith

    by richardak on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:35:06 AM PST

  •  Deductions help the middle class (16+ / 0-)

    Most deductions phase out and the rich can manipulate their incomes so those incomes are tax advantaged capital gains and dividends, if not tax exempt interest.  This is a fool's game.  Anyone who talks closing deductions as the key engine for fixing our revenue problem is just looking to tax the middle class and leave the rich unscathed.

    •  Bingo. (3+ / 0-)

      Rich people don't rely on deductions. They simply redefine what "income" is.

    •  absolutely (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JustGiaco

      And unfortunately those will be the deductions that will be cut.  However this is what I would like to see:

      1) Raise the payroll and social security tax maximum(for instance SS is 110,000 raise that to 250,000) and lower the rates.

      2)  Only make the first home deductible.  All these high earners have second homes or boats.  No deduction.  Set a max on deductions, like 5% of income.  No capital gains, not anything else, just income.  Limit house purchase to every 10 years.

      3)  Charitable contributions are limited to 5% of income.  Just deduct income, not capital gains, not anything else.  If you make $50,000 a year, then 2,500 is deductible.  That is more than many people I know give in a year.  The most likely response to this is tithing, but tithing should not be done at taxpayer expense.

      4) No deduction for alimony, gambling losses, or investment interest.

      If we are serious about the deficit and cutting deductions where it might makle a difference and not cause a a family or three making $20K a year to really hurt, then these are some good examples.  I was young and made little money and still paid income taxes.  I got a refund, but I paid income taxes.  And I should have.  But saying that everyone should pay income tax, and saying that the wealthy must pay less, simply makes no sense.

  •  WTF??? (13+ / 0-)

    How on earth is this guy Dean of Columbia Business School?? There is absolutely no evidence that this supply-side Austrian austerity model works or has EVER worked as productive economic policy. In fact, this BS is Exhibit A is how to kill an economy in 6 months. Yet he's Dean of one of the best schools at one to the top universities in the country.

    Does anyone share how depressing that is???

    •  their intelligence is what saddens me (6+ / 0-)

      Because I know he's not an idiot. I know he knows whats happening in the EU right now, what happened in the UK regarding austerity.
      Its the fact that he, and others in high ranking positions can look into the camera, look virtually, into the eyes of people, Americans, who they know are struggling, and simply lie. Period.
      They know what they're saying will make it much worse for those to whom they are presently lying, yet they continue to lie.
      They know more people will be put out of work. They lie on.
      People will lose their homes, not a problem. Just keep lying.
      They know that some of these same people will die, or their children will die if they can't afford health care. They surge ahead with lies. Bound and determined. Not even stopping to breath between lies. No need to reload, the lies flow freely without a stutter.
      How on earth has an entire party been handed over lock stock and barrel to factually challenged zealots, and out and out sociopathic liars?
      We win, they still control the conversation.
      Are we screaming in the forest???

      "Please proceed, Governor."

      by Dema Broad on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:55:24 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The Austrian School (0+ / 0-)

      doesn't believe an economic model can be disproven by real world data. Real world events can only illustrate or confirm the result of thought experiments.

      I've lost my faith in nihilism

      by grumpynerd on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 12:34:49 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  It's called doublespeak. (9+ / 0-)

    Hallmark of all totalitarian movements.  "We Germans are not a warlike people, and we will prove it by deploying the wehrmacht to secure peace."  "We Republicans want to raise revenues, so we are going to insist that the mechanism for generating revenues never be increased."

    "They fear this man. They know he will see farther than they, and he will bind them with ancient logics." -The stoner guy in The Cabin in the Woods

    by Troubadour on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:36:05 AM PST

  •  I can't remember where I read this (6+ / 0-)

    but will look for a source.

    I read that the deductions will be very bad for states with relatively high state taxes that allow these to be deducted from federal income taxes. For instance, California and New York.

    The suggestion is that this is a deliberate way to tick off well-to-do Democratic-leaning people in those states.

    •  True about the taxes, maybe true abt the reason (0+ / 0-)

      CA has very high housing prices (still, even post-real estate crash) and therefore large payments for mortgage interest, high property taxes (not the rate so much but the rate x price is what determines property tax), and high state taxes, all of which are deductible. If you remove those deductions or limit them, it would disproportionately hit taxpayers in California and similar states. And for whatever reason, Republicans don't seem to care .. it may indeed have something to do with the fact that Californians and New Yorkers don't vote Republican anyway.

  •  eliminate the deduction for being frackin rich! (5+ / 0-)

    call it what you will, but if you get to only pay 15% on dividends because your rich, that's a deduction. If your payroll tax is a lower %age than someone earning 10X less than you, that's a deduction. If you're a multi-billion$$$$ corporation and pay no taxes, that's a deduction. Close 'em.

    Fear is the mind-killer - Frank Herbert, Dune

    by p gorden lippy on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:36:22 AM PST

  •  * (6+ / 0-)

    Republicans passed the Bush tax cuts in 2001 knowing they would sunset in 10 years. The reason for the sunset provision in the bill was because of the Byrd Rule, which prohibits legislation that substantially impacts the deficit from lasting longer than 10 years. In other words, when Republicans passed the Bush tax cuts, they knew they were increasing the deficit over 10 years. Yet now, they howl about the deficit and want to keep the Bush tax cuts. Republicans are not good faith actors.

  •  interesting (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skyounkin, PorridgeGun

    last week Obama met with Republicans and everyone said it was a very productive meeting. The market went up on the notion that the fiscal cliff would be avoided.
    Now I can certainly see how sequestration would be avoided. After all, neither Dems nor Republicans really want it. So that's pretty easy to put off.
    But how about this tax hike?
    I don't see an easy compromise there.
    So how did they agree that it was a productive meeting?

    Obama 2012...going to win it with our support!!!

    by mattinjersey on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:38:40 AM PST

  •  Massive redistribution towards the wealthy (5+ / 0-)

    Romney gave away his cards in a subtle debate remark. This is still the Republican plan. He said that he wanted the rich to pay at least as large a share of the total income tax collected, but lower their tax rate in the process.

    Now there's always "dynamic rating", the farce behind the Laffer (laugh at it) curve, wherein tax cuts necessarily spur massive economic growth.  But nobody buys this any more.  Even the Banana Republicans have trouble with it.

    But if you lower tax rates on the rich, they will still pay the same total if they get a larger share of total income.  So just keep pumping up their pay, cut everyone else's, and they can have top rates lowered and still pay their share.  After all, 90% of the country will have so little money left that they can't pay much.

    However, the Hubbard plan does not depend on that, since he's not making the same promise.  Rather, by cutting the deductions used by middle-class families (home interest, education, medical, charitable) but treating the favorable rates on unearned income (dividends, capital gains) as a "rate" rather than as as deduction, then the very rich keep their Bush gifts and the middle class, especially those in the high-housing-cost coastal states, are royally screwed.  Again it's a redistribution of income from the middle class to the truly wealthy.

  •  It's An Attempt To Squeeze The Middle Class (6+ / 0-)

    By picking which "deductions" to target, they hope to stick the middle class with yet another check for Wall Street's wild binges.

    On the Internet, nobody knows if you're a dog... but everybody knows if you're a jackass.

    by stevemb on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:39:56 AM PST

  •  those Dems in ultra rich pockets (3+ / 0-)

    will attempt to screwing this up.  Even the gop is conceding at this point.  More pressure needs to happen now to make the ultra rich pay closer to their fair share of taxes.

  •  Fine. I'm willing to go with only 2 loopholes (0+ / 0-)

    Okay, let's not raise marginal rates. I'm willing to raise rervenues by closing only 2 loopholes.

    Tax dividends like ordinary income.

    Tax capital gains like ordinary income.

    Tha might not be what I'd like most, but we all have to be willing to compromise.

  •  Remember Health Care (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skyounkin, nchristine, PorridgeGun

    Liberals delude themselves if they think Republicans are doing anything other than stalling for time, to allow the effects of the election to fade in the public's mind so that they can do what they do best: Obstruct. They will not give ONE INCH on the tax cuts.  They will continue to call for Romney's plan which was to eliminate popular deductions.

    Obama should have a plan IN PLACE TOMORROW, present it to them and then have them say no NOW, before public attention wanders.

    Don't make the mistake of health care and assume their cooperation. Assume the opposite.

    If you hate government, don't run for office in that government.

    by Bensdad on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:42:37 AM PST

  •  Well, that leaves out the Sunday morning shows, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Liberal Capitalist, PorridgeGun
    only a fool wouldn't be able to see through the Republican's latest gambit.
    and the MSM generally.

    "Let's see what fresh fuckwittery these dolts can contrive to torment themselves with this time." -- Iain Banks, The Hydrogen Sonata

    by Rikon Snow on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:43:09 AM PST

  •  They may sound reasonable but they dont act (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skyounkin

    like it. They lie; the cheat; they steal; they dodge; they don't work for me or for most of us. We have to get that message out; they work for the evil rotten rich, ONLY.

    The radical Republican party is the party of oppression, fear, loathing and above all more money and power for the people who robbed us.

    by a2nite on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:43:15 AM PST

  •  Tax refrom, my ass!!!! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brooke In Seattle, PorridgeGun

    Closing up the 'loopholes' is an empty gesture in that they can be very easily put back next session.  While "they're" putting the 'removed' loopholes back in, they'll add a few more to sweeten the pot!!  "They're" just looking for ways to stick the bill to the less than 1%s without saying so.

  •  President Obama has ruled out dynamic scoring, (3+ / 0-)

    and he did so in public. So that's that on "growth induced revenue."

    But as for capping deductions and increasing rates, a little bit of both would work provided we get $1.4 to $1.6 in real revenues. I think the president shouldn't get to fixated on the top rate because some of the wealthy we need to be after aren't earning money via income anyway.

    Where the president shouldn't budge one bit is on estate, capital gains and dividends, and getting rid of the carried interest loophole. All of that absolutely has to go, no negotiation.

    If hedge funds hate it, fuck em.

  •  Who called it voodoo economics? Cutting rates (0+ / 0-)

    Will cause so much growth that revenue will go up. It's not true of course.

    Brand new favorite RSS feed of Daily Kos Radio Podcasts http://kagrox.libsyn.com/rss
    Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

    by We Won on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:45:09 AM PST

  •  Uh Oh (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Liberal Capitalist

    only a fool wouldn't be able to see through the Republican's latest gambit...
    If past history is any indicator, I'm not terribly confident given the Democratic fools residing in Congress. They tend to make Charlie Brown trying to kick Lucy's football look downright cerebral by comparison.

  •  After we raise taxes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lostinamerica

    Let's also step up enforcement of tax laws on the 1%, and prosecution for tax evaders like Willard. There should soon be a bunch of unemployed DEA agents who are very good at seizing assets, let's utilize their transferable skills in service to the 99%.

    "Political ends as sad remains will die." - YES 'And You and I' ; -8.88, -9.54

    by US Blues on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:45:33 AM PST

  •  I Don't Believe They'll Renege (2+ / 0-)

    I believe they will seek to eliminate or limit the deductions that keep lower income Americans from paying income taxes.  When they say "decrease rates, increase the tax base" I take them at their word.  

    They want Mitt Romney's 47% to pay more.  Increased rates does nothing to force the poverty-stricken to kick in $$$ they don't have, "limiting deductions" does.  

    This could also be accomplished in such a way that the noticeable affect would be almost negligible to the richest Americans (their effective tax rate goes up by 0.001% while poor Americans go up by 1000%).

    Too Folk For You. - Schmidting in the Punch Bowl - verb - Committing an unexpected and underhanded political act intended to "spoil the party."

    by TooFolkGR on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:45:38 AM PST

  •  Rationale (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lostinamerica

    The answer is easy...

    - Give tax cuts to the uber wealthy Lords
    - Get rid of tax loop holes for those dirty middle and lower classes

    Isn't that the way we are supposed to do it? Hooray for feudalism ... Hooray for going back to the Middle .... Ages!!!

    No more gooper LITE!

    by krwada on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:46:47 AM PST

  •  Maybe they're just planning a REALLY big bake sale (0+ / 0-)

    and lemonade stand.

    Maybe we'll put on a show!

    That way, we can bring in lots more money and no one has to pay taxes and we can eat candy and play games forever and ever and ever, and we will never get old and we can stay up as late as we want and...

  •  Simple: Tax rates get set into law and into stone (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    nchristine

    ..while "deductions" are totally fungible. The politicians can just trade away these mythical deductions all they want, or just ignore them altogether as empty promises. There's no wiggle room with tax rates.

  •  My bullshit detector (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    nchristine, PorridgeGun

    flashes whenever any republican opens their mouth about anything.

    when guys whose entire economic ideology is built around the concept that cutting taxes creates economic growth start talking about higher tax revenue, your bullshit detector should start flashing.

    Medicine is not health care; Food is health care; Medicine is sick care. Grow foods, not lawns.

    by jackandjill on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:50:30 AM PST

  •  Closing loopholes hits rich Dems more than raising (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chicago Lawyer, lostinamerica

    Rates.  Urban areas & blue states have bigger mortgage deductions, and bigger deductions for state & local taxes.  They want the POTUS to raise rates on rich Dems more than GOP

    "Speak out, judge fairly, and defend the rights of oppressed and needy people." Proverbs 31:9

    by zdefender on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:50:50 AM PST

  •  Just let the freaking taxcuts expire anx pay no (4+ / 0-)

    attention too these republican lying dogs. They have proven for 4 years, their words even after they have agreed to in discussions, when the bills come to the floor, they vote against it. Their words are useless, so treat them like it. They need to be stepped on like cockroaches.

  •  Do both (0+ / 0-)

    Let the rates go up for the wealthy.  (Also, we really need to let rates go up on the rest of us too, although that needs to be phased in more slowly.)

    Then start cutting deductions.  The very first one to go should be the one Obama campaigned on - classifying the costs of shipping jobs overseas as a business expense for tax deductions.  Then we can compromise by implementing the Romney plan - cap deductions at some arbitrary amount.  Hey, it's a Republican idea, I'm sure the House will go for it, right?

    The one that's consistently brought up for cutting is the one that probably ought to be left alone - the mortgage interest deduction.  State and local tax structures already demand that working and middle-class homeowners carry an undue share of property taxes.  Let's not make that any worse.  (Says this non-homeowner.)

    "And the President of the United States - would be seated right here. I would be here. And he would be here. I would turn - and there he’d be. I could pet ‘im." - Lewis Black

    by libdevil on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 11:53:41 AM PST

  •  If you want an optimistic way of looking at (0+ / 0-)

    it, this shows GOP moving towards the Democratic position.

    They started at no net tax increase at all. Now, there is talk of capping or getting rid of deductions. Whether enough of them will agree to a rate hike remains to be seen.

  •  This Is Not A Mystery (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lostinamerica, Brooke In Seattle

    Republicans tipped their hand during the election.  They think the poor and middle class need to pay more (something) in income taxes.  It's not fair that the rich have to pay income taxes and the poor do not.  Therefore, we must raise revenue without increasing tax rates by removing deductions used predominantly by the poor and middle class.  This is well-known and already thoroughly rejected by the voters.  

    Elections should have consequences.  The voters have said the only deficit solution they will tolerate is a solution that has rich people giving more money to the federal government.  That is, the voters require more revenue to be collected by the federal government from rich people.  That is, higher taxes on rich people.  That is, rich people must give more actual dollars to the federal government.  There are no weasel words, no backhanded sideways terminologies, no spin, no formulations, no escaping it.  Rich people have to pay more, and those standing in the way of that freight train are going to get demolished every time.

  •  It's pretty simple (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lostinamerica, Brooke In Seattle

    They are in Plutocrat Protection Mode, aka Save the Billionaires Foundation.

    As you going higher and higher up the chain into the ranks of the super wealthy, deductions mean less and less. Obviously, things like the mortgage deduction, for example, mean very little to the bottom line of the Kochs.

    So if they really did eliminate some deductions, it would just be a way of squeezing what they consider to be the middle class, in this case, mere multi-millionaires, leaving plutocrats unscathed.

  •  It's no wonder Hubbard has gone far in academia. (0+ / 0-)

    He's a great rationalizer.  

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 12:00:18 PM PST

  •  Recent reports of the two parties being close to (0+ / 0-)

    resolving this imapss are greatly overstated. The market is rallying. What do they know that I dont know?

  •  Actually, if the started closing the loopholes and (0+ / 0-)

    subsidies on the oil/gas industry that could help.

    Not as much as returning rates to pre-Reagan levels, but it would be a start.

    "I believe more women should carry guns. I believe armed women will make the world a better place. Women need to come to think of themselves not as victims but as dangerous." Anna Pigeon

    by glorificus on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 12:03:24 PM PST

  •  The Republicans' ploy will only work if (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IA229 Dave, PorridgeGun

    Obama allows it to work.  Let's hope that Obama remembers who won the election and doesn't capitulate to the Republicans this time.

  •  It's all bullsh*t... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bryduck, Brooke In Seattle

    The national Republican Party exists in order to cut income taxes for the rich.  That's its sole purpose, and that's been its sole purpose since the 1970s.  That is why these billionaires pump so much f**king money into their campaigns.  What, you think the Koch Brothers give a crap about abortion?  Every other aspect of the platform---abortion, guns---is simply a way to sew together a coalition that will allow income taxes to be cut.  How much of the Religious Right platform has been enacted at the federal level since 1980?  Not much at all.  What does the income tax situation look like today compared to 1980?  Aha!  Republicans will agree to raise taxes on the rich only if they are facing an existential threat.

  •  Kabuki Theater (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PorridgeGun

    The final agreement has likely been written, probably last summer.  Both sides did their bargaining with their corporate donors.

    Now they're going through the motions - both parties pretending they care most about middle class Americans, and tossing insults at the other side. Faux outrage abounds.

    In the end, they'll go behind closed doors, late at night, during the lame duck session and do the dirty deed. When all is done, Dems will claim victory and blame the GOP for all the draconian cuts in domestic spending. The GOP will blame the Dems for making them keep tax cuts for the wealthy another couple of years.

    Or somesuch.  It's so boring and predictable.

    Please stand by. I'm looking for a new sig line.

    by Betty Pinson on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 12:06:46 PM PST

  •  Congress and the President should enjoy the (0+ / 0-)

    Holidays and take the rest of the year off.

    Come January 2013, they can get down to the real business of creating new tax credits and cutting taxes for the Middle Class.

    Especially after that Nasty George W Bush raised them.

    FORWARD !!!!

    Notice: This Comment © 2012 ROGNM

    by ROGNM on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 12:07:04 PM PST

    •  Agreed!! Obama And The Dems Should Offer The (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Tim DeLaney

      following during the lame duck session: a return to Clinton era income tax rates on those making $250K and above, and a return to Clinton era tax rates on capital gains, dividends, and estates. A new Wall St. transaction tax and a millionaires's surtax. Elimination of the carried interest tax dodge. Tell the Rethugs to take it or leave it.  If they take it, we win. If they leave it, the Bush tax breaks expire on Dec. 31, and the rates on those making $250K and above go up to Clinton era rates (along with all other rates). Then in January, the Dems can come back with a reinstatement of the Bush tax cuts for those making under $250K and tell the Rethugs again: take it or leave it. If they take it, we win. If they leave it, we have plenty of ammo to hold the Rethugs hostage with, including deep defense budget cuts, and the upcoming 2014 mid term elections. Democrats are holding a better hand - they just need to play their cards smart to get what they want from the Rethugs.

  •  Growth The Immediate Priority. Deficit Reduction (0+ / 0-)

    the long term priority. I wish Obama and the Democrats would emphasize that frame. To me the ideal would be to keep the Bush tax cuts for everybody short term and pass Obama's latest job package. Since that is not politically feasible I would not mind keeping the Bush tax cuts and have no austerity cuts. Down the road as we get closer to full employment let's start raising the top rates to the Clinton rates and ultimately go even higher. If the frame is right, Obama could make that compromise and not have people go batshit that we are extending the tax cuts. Made this same argument during the lame duck 2010 session. Flamed then. Expect it this time as well.

    •  I don't know if you're asking to be flamed (0+ / 0-)

      But that doesn't seem to be a feasible strategy.

      These sociopaths are for no-rate-increases-ever and they will swallow cyanide pills before they give in on this.

      Allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire next month is the only way the rates can possibly go up before the 2022 midterms (when I expect massive Democratic gains in the House following the 2020 redistricting, depending on our flying car traffic patterns).

      But, since I firmly believe Democrats cannot take the House before 2022, and because I think the Republicans are much more likely to moderate on social issues while retaining their anti-tax fundamentalism, I think your strategy is just kicking the can down the road.

      Why give them another opening to take hostages in a year or two?  We can just end this madness by letting all of the tax cuts expire, then introduce legislation to cut taxes on the middle class.  Are they going to keep taxes high on everyone to make a point?  Of course not.  After that, the GOP has no leverage to force spending cuts.  So we can just not make those cuts, and wait until 2022 to see what our options are.

  •  why? (0+ / 0-)

    "tax revenue without raising rates" is the new "broadening the base" which is euphemism for sticking it average Americans through elimination of deductions and credits they need (mortgage for some, EITC, etc.) instead of raising money by increasing the rates at which the rich pay.

    It also ensures that those in a position to exploit the tax code, including changes that emphasize closing deductions rather than raising rates, will be more easily able to avoid for the rich than those who cannot afford expensive tax lawyers and accountants.

    So the answer is pretty simple: They are not merely trying to avoid talking about tax rates they are trying to package their burden shift goals in the mantle of "raising revenue with raising rates".

    Take from the middle class and the poor and give to the rich. It is always the same with these guys.

  •  GOP shameless fakery. Nix what tax deductions? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, PorridgeGun

    That was in the Grand Bargain bull the Rethugs tried under Gramm-Rudman during Reagan's reign.  I remember them shutting down real estate limited partnerships as 'loopholes'. It made no difference for the deficit.
    Reality was out-of-control deficits resulted, finally fixed by actual tax raises by GHW 'Read my lips' Bush.
    Shame on any Democrat who buys that crap.

  •  Look Out!! This "Close Loopholes But Don't Raise (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, PorridgeGun

    tax rates" is the same old GOP BS wolf disguised in sheep's clothes. Tax rates on EVERYTHING that touches the wealthy need to increase to have a decent shot at trimming the budget deficit - that includes raising rates on capital gains, dividends, estates, and income (for the upper brackets), as well as a Wall St. transaction tax. It also should include eliminating loopholes and tax dodges (like carried interest) the wealthy benefit most from. The GOP lost the Presidential election - DEMOCRATS SHOULD NOT BACK DOWN ON THIS!!  The GOP is trying to play rope-a-dope with the Democrats and they shouldn't fall for it. Merely closing loopholes will result in the middle class shouldering the burden for deficit reduction. Screw Grover Norquist.

    •  I agree with this except for (0+ / 0-)
      ... a Wall St. transaction tax
      It is altogether too easy for the rich to avoid this. The really wealthy could conduct their transactions "off Wall street".

      All the other things you mentioned are good enough to get the job done. Classify dividends, capital gains, and carried interest as ordinary income, put a firm cap on deductions and other tax advantages, and raise individual marginal income tax rates to the 40% level.

      What is really tricky is to get legislators--who are frequently wealthy in their own right--to vote to increase taxes on the wealthy.

      You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows. --Bob Dylan-- -7.25, -6.21

      by Tim DeLaney on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 01:16:07 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Because deep down they still are the same sh*ts (0+ / 0-)

    that wanted to Obama to fail in the first term, and they know that the math doesn't work.

    God be with you, Occupiers. God IS with you.

    by Hohenzollern on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 12:18:01 PM PST

  •  Because they don't think it's fair that (0+ / 0-)

    the top 2% take all the brunt of the tax increases, even though the top 2% got nearly all the benefit of the initial tax cuts.  

    The liberty of democracy is not safe if people tolerate growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their democratic state itself.---FDR

    by masslib on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 12:20:40 PM PST

  •  All Republicans are Romneys at heart (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    They are carny hucksters who'll promise the moon and deliver shit.   All this Romney talk about keeping the upper class tax breaks but increasing revenues by eliminating  unnamed deductions is shameless hucksterism.  Remember George W who argued every which way about taxes , whether surpluses or deficits, and his solution was always the same: lower taxes on the rich.  The only tax reform that will help America is eliminating the tax break given to unearned income so all income will be taxed at the same rate.

  •  Double-talk (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, PorridgeGun

    The Republicans are making it sound as if they're supportive of increased revenues -- but only through "growth".

    Would be the same if Democrats said they were in favor of reductions in "earned benefits" -- but only through growth (which would, by definition, mean more people working and less people getting needed benefits).

    Then we'd be back to square one:  we'd all be in favor of closin' our eyes and hopin' and a wishin' that everything would magically get better.

  •  Do both (0+ / 0-)

    We should eliminate any tax deduction scheme that does not clearly further the broad national interest.  And raise the minimum rates.  

  •  And, betcha $10,000 those closed loopholes (0+ / 0-)

    won't stay closed for long. Especially if they benefit the rich. Closing loopholes for the rich is like playing Whack-a-Mole.

    Forever.

    Typical GOP bullshit. To use the technical term.

    We saw it through those long years of GOP governors around here. Especially Rmoney.

    Cut taxes. Shift the burden to the towns. Increase fees. Increase tuition. Punt essential infrastructure spending down the road. But brag about cutting taxes.

    See that curtain, Toto? Sic it!

    A society is judged by how well it cares for those in the dawn of life, the children. By how well it cares for those in the twilight of life, the elderly. And, by how well it cares for those on the edge of life; the poor, the sick, and the disabled.

    by BobBlueMass on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 01:51:34 PM PST

  •  Sure , limit deductions (0+ / 0-)

    after you raise the rates on those making over $250,000 a year. Then cut deductions on home mortgage interest on the same group of high earners, lower the capital gains rate to the same rate as is paid by 401K owners who pay ordinary income tax on their withdrawals, and limit all mortgage interest deduction on second homes. Seems a good start to me.

    “The quality of owning freezes you forever in "I," and cuts you off forever from the "we.” ― John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath

    by Miss Pip on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 01:54:24 PM PST

  •  Any Democrat that wimps out (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PorridgeGun

    ...and joins with the Republicans on this needs to be the IMMEDIATE TARGET of a recall. No more fucking around.

    "Do you realize that fluoridation is the most monstrously conceived and dangerous Communist plot we have ever had to face?" - General Jack D. Ripper

    by wilder5121 on Mon Nov 19, 2012 at 02:00:29 PM PST

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