IMHO the GOP should agree to a tax increase for the rich in return for the cuts in spending. Result will be a rebellion by the Dems against the deal because they truly do not want cuts in entitlements. We keep forgetting the deal is not just tax increases, but also entitlement cuts. If the Dems try to modify the entitlement cut schedule, GOP has the pretext to back out of the deal by pointing out that they concede on taxes the Dems must make concessions also. Dem hardliners may argue that the GOP agreed to modified tax increases on the rich only, thus the Dems have the right to modify entitlement cuts. Problem is Dems now argue against sparing the middle class from tax increases???!!! If this game is played properly, the Dems can be hung on their own arguments. Obama gave the GOP an opening, I say take it and agree tax increases for rich. Now the Dems will gag over entitlement cuts and the mess they will be in as they try to squirm out of it.
The only trouble with that is that it will be just like it was with Reagan and Bush I. GOP will raise taxes and Dems will promptly renege on spending cuts.
You fail to understand how spending cuts work vs tax increases. Tax increases go into effect right away. Spending cuts are promised into the future, then are 'modified'. And, often, the so-called cuts are not cuts at all, but merely promises to reduce the rate of planned increase.
The House should pass a tax bill cutting all of the Bush rates by one fifth (Mittens's idea). Obviously, it won't go anywhere. Then, in the spirit of compromise, the House should pass a version capping deductions at, say $25K. That will, in effect, mean the rich pay more, since the non-rich won't hit the cap. However, the lower rate at the margin will still incent employers to expand and investors to invest.
The only viable way out of the fiscal mess is to restore economic growth while holding the line on spending. Keeping taxes low will increase the rate of growth, resulting in more revenue, not less, since all brackets will be paying on a higher income base, and less money will be spent on welfare.