[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
And how can another tax increase on the top half possibly be a good thing for the bottom half?
Answer: In the immediate short-term, it looks like a benefit to the lower 50% of income earnersif the tax increase on the upper half of income users is then partially or entirely used to give “tax relief” in the form of cashable “tax credits” to themselves even when having paid either no income tax or much less income tax than the “credit.”
When some politicians say “tax relief,” their Newspeak meaning of it is paying out money to people that don’t pay taxes or paying them more than the taxes paid. Not reduced taxes for those that actually pay substantial taxes. That, in contrast, is a “give-away” and that would be bad.
In the long-term, if they are employed, no benefit as the money was taken from those that employ them, thus leaving less to pay employees; and if they buy groceries, food, clothes, or anything else, no benefit as the cost of producing these go up as the producers have to pay more taxes.
But it looks like a benefit and buys votes.
Really the first obligation of a government, in terms of the economy, is growth. If an economy isn’t growing, the country is in trouble. But once that threshold has been achieved, there are other options and other questions for a government to answer. This, I believe, is the key point in what you said Obama said earlier. Essentially obligation #1 is growth. If the economy isn’t growing, actions should be taken to make it grow. However, when an economy is growing we have other questions to ask.
For the last 10 years growth has been concentrated primarily in the hands of the very top of the economy. So a government, and in a democracy a people, must ask, should the government work to more evenly spread growth?
If you think the answer is “no” let an economy grow as it does regardless of if that growth is concentrated, then you wouldn’t talk about “fairness” and the like. Obama seems to believe that he will be able to “spread” the growth throughout the economy. So middle income people’s wealth will increase along with the higher levels of people.
Essentially trickle down economics believes that when the top grows, everyone grows. That hasn’t happened in the last 10 years. We have to ask “why?” “Should we try to change this?” and “how?”