Skip to comments.A Victory for Demagoguery (America seems to be falling for Obama's class warfare campaign)
Posted on 12/11/2012 8:47:53 AM PST by SeekAndFind
Im in the camp that believes Republicans have no choice but to agree to raise taxes on the top 2 percent of earners. The party has been successfully caricatured as the servant of the rich. This is unjust, yes, but justice is imperfect in this life. Its political suicide for Republicans to stand fast on maintaining current rates for high earners even at the cost of raising taxes for everyone else. Imagine if we went over the fiscal cliff. In January, Obama would call upon Congress to pass a law restoring the tax rates for 98 percent of filers. What could Republicans do then, refuse?
There is a time for strategic retreat. Republicans are not without tactical opportunities though. They can reply, as my friend Michael Medved has suggested, that if the Clinton tax rates are desirable, so are the Clinton spending rates. They could resurrect a budget from 1998 and pass it. Democrats would protest that 1998 spending rates are not remotely commensurate with our needs. But wait, dont they argue that the Clinton years were economic utopia? Were people living in cardboard boxes on the streets in the 1990s? While theyre at it, they could propose Clinton levels of regulation, too.
Alternatively, they could pass the Simpson/Bowles proposal, reminding voters that the president ignored his own debt commission. Simpson/Bowles has many flaws (including too few spending reductions), but it does at least make big strides toward taming the debt. Endorsing it would show that Republicans are prepared for painful compromise in the name of getting our house in order. The president talks of a balanced approach to deficit reduction by which he seems to mean more taxes and more spending. His former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has fingered national debt as the greatest national security threat we face. Yet the president has yet to make a genuine proposal to cut spending.
Republicans must bow to political reality about tax rates, but its worth a backward glance to consider just how great a victory this is for demagoguery.
Consider that the Democratic party is now committed, body and soul, to defending the middle-class tax cuts. They are the party of the middle class, they trill. Yet when these tax rates were enacted, every living Democrat denounced them as tax cuts for the rich. Every Democratic tongue swore that Bush had passed tax cuts for the rich. The Republicans piped in response: No, they were tax cuts for everyone. But they were drowned out. The libel stuck, and it persists even now as Democrats go to the mat for those Bush middle-class tax rates.
Also, the Bush tax cuts made the tax code more, not less, progressive. More than 8 million taxpayers were relieved of paying taxes altogether because the Bush reforms doubled the child tax credit and expanded the Earned Income Tax Credit. That may have been a political miscalculation as it insulated more Americans from the cost of government. But its certainly at odds with the conventional wisdom that Republicans didnt consider the needs of working Americans when they were in power.
As for the rich, yes, the rates went down. But the percent of the total tax burden shouldered by the top 1 percent of earners increased from 37 percent in 2000 to 40 percent in 2007. The bottom 50 percent of taxpayers paid 16 percent less in 2007 than they had in 2000. Their share of the total burden fell from 3.9 percent to 2.9 percent.
Mr. Obama has successfully deluded people into believing that the rich pay less in taxes than their secretaries. In fact, as Steve Moore has shown, the top 5 percent of taxpayers earn 37 percent of national income but pay 61 percent of income taxes.
Democrats, especially this president, have scorned the Bush years for their accumulated debt and for raging inequality. Yet, as Professor Emmanuel Saez of Berkeley (yes, Berkeley) has shown, the income gap during Obamas first term has been far more pronounced than it was during the Bush years. As Alexander Eichler of the Huffington Post put it, The rising tide has lifted fewer boats during the Obama years and the ones its lifted have been mostly yachts.
The demonization of the rich paid electoral dividends: Obama will get his way on tax rates. But the problem he conjured the rich getting richer at the expense of everyone else was a crude fiction. Its the kind of class warfare appeal that has worked all over the globe. We used to be an exception. No more.
Mona Charen is a nationally syndicated columnist.
You can’t fix stupid...and we are now in the state of stupid. God be with us in the darkness.
They would not be “falling” for it without the eager assistance of the rotted-out and corrupt partisan MSM.
Yawn. Mona Mona Mona... Let’s try this one more time.
For 8 years the Democrats and the media have been calling this “THE BUSH TAX CUTS FOR THE RICH”. Democrats won in 2006 and 2008 running on that.
Now is the time to call the Democrats out on it. “If you said this were tax cuts for the rich, what does this have to do with the middle and lower class being impacted? Especially since the BUSH TAX CUTS FOR THE RICH expire on 12/31.
Unless of course the Democrats with the help of the media LIED to the American people. So which is it and why are you, Mona and the rest of the Conservative media calling the Democrats out on this?
Surrender now and the Kenyan will just come back for more later. How about demagogue-ing free market capitalism for the masses? 2014 could be a good year for Republicans
It’s the spending stupid.
“So which is it and why are you, Mona and the rest of the Conservative media calling the Democrats out on this?”
So which is it and why are you, Mona and the rest of the Conservative media NOT calling the Democrats out on this?
Hook, line and sinker.
Can anything turn around 60 years of indoctrination by media and education?
When you couple it with the other aspects of Losing America's Multi-Generational Purpose, you realize that we are in a desperate situation.
The tragic reality is that no part of the dogma being systematically foisted on American youth, is fit to stand rational analysis. Yet the indoctrination succeeds, because far too few, who should know better, have the fortitude to openly challenge it.
God help us if we do not wake up.
"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?"
There is a REASON God gave us the Tenth Commandment.
"You shall not covet your neighbors house; you shall not covet. your neighbors wife, or his manservant, or his maidservant, or his ox, or his ass, or anything that is your neighbors. (Ex 20:17)
All Democrat class envy is based in the breaking and contempt of this Commandment by God.
When you hear Democrats try and say that Christ was a liberal, think of this Commandment.
And what do we get in return? Spending cuts? No. Entitlement reform? No. Restoring some defense cuts? No. Tax reform? No.
What exactly does capitulating and losing ground on the tax argument give us? Frankly, I don’t care what the damage is at this point. We learned in the past 12 months that voters have an infinitely small attention span, and that facts don’t matter. Fight for principle. If we give up this point, we have get something in return. My vote is tax reform, because these leftists won’t cut entitlements, and won’t make any meaningful spending cuts. Clean up the tax system in exchange for rate cuts.
At the same time use the opportunity to educate the public that the Bush tax cuts were for everyone and the larger percentage cuts and tax credits went to the lower and middle class.
I don’t see any hope. In reality, if we want to keep this level of spending, then we should raise taxes - and that means on EVERYONE! Slap a 35% income tax on the lower and middle class, and a 50% tax on the rich, and see how long the middle class and the lower classes think this is a fair level of spending!
But the reality is that they will keep on demonizing the rich and taking more and more from the top 49%, since they know the bottom 51% can outvote them. That was always the fallacy of a democracy, and why we had a republic that gave the ‘elites’ control of part of government.
What they needed was a requirement in the Constitution that one’s vote was proportional to the tax one paid. But that will never happen...
Republicans need to say, at every chance, that this level of spending REQUIRES raising taxes on the middle class. They are letting the Democrats get away with pretending the rich can pay a little more and everything will be fine. And Romney RAN on that, dammit! He was just going to adjust things a little, have the rich pay a bit more, and economic heaven would arrive.
The truth is that the people who want Big Bird need to have THEIR taxes raised enough to pay for it. At this point, I’d favor the Republican coming out with a tax increase that would REALLY pay for the entire deficit.
Oh BS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Do exactly what the dims would do if they were the republicans. VOTE TO EXTEND ALL OF BUSH’S TAX RATES AND LEAVE TOWN AND DENY THE HOUSE AND SENATE A QUORUM.
Get the female Republicans to come out and say, “We Republicans don’t like raising taxes on anyone, but the Democrats keep insisting that we do it, so we are going to go along with this tax increase that they love, and if it doesn’t work, why us Republicans will sponsor a bill next year to lower everyones taxes.”
It’s called a pre-emptive political strike. It means taking the offense instead of always reacting to the Democrats.
What’s the old saying - Deomocracy is when two wolves and a sheep vote on what to have for dinner.
I don’t remember the founders saying “We can’t win this war let’s go home and enjoy life under the King”.
That is what you are saying Mona.
Why the Hell every Republican and conservative pundit still talking about TAXES?
Don’t raise taxes, CUT SPENDING!
The last time around, we didn’t cut a dime of spending. And we won’t this time, either, unless the damn Republicrats at least TALK ABOUT IT!
We have just added hundreds of thousands of government jobs the past few months, in order to make the unemployment numbers look better—although they still had to hid them anyway until after the election.
CUT SPENDING! CUT GOVERNMENT WASTE! SHIFT THE DAMNED DISCUSSION FROM TAXES TO SPENDING!
I don’t see why the House of Representatives couldn’t pass two bills. One to maintain the Bush era tax rates for the lower brackets and another one for the higher brackets. Only the first one would probably pass the Senate and be signed by Obama but at least the Republicans wouldn’t be put in a position of having to vote for higher rates. That might very well destroy the Republican party but of course that’s exactly what Obama is hoping for.
You cant fix stupid...and we are now in the state of stupid
Exactly. They fell for the rest of his BS why should class warfare be any different. Blooming idiots. The disgusting part is we have to suffer with the lame brains.
Imagine if National Review and the rest of Conservative Inc. had the guts to ask whether Obama was a citizen of Indonesia as a child or how he paid for Harvard.
We already know the answer to that. He was.
Not that it makes a damn bit of difference...