Tag: tax cuts

Tax Cuts & the Poor: Reagan & Now

When Ronald Reagan took office back in 1981, he had three goals: a tax cut to stimulate the economy; cutting back on federal spending and regulations; and building up the American military to a state of preparedness after a post-Vietnam demise. He accomplished all of those except for the cutback on federal spending. Some blamed his military buildup for that, but the bulk of the increased spending was on the domestic side—Democrats who controlled the House wouldn’t allow any sensible… Read more »

The Latest News Roundup

Republicans have almost accomplished something—almost because the House and the Senate still have to iron out differences—but it looks like a tax cut bill is ready to become reality. Democrats criticized the Senate version as being cobbled together at the last moment, thereby not giving enough time to study it. Does that concern jog anyone else’s memory? Yes, they didn’t exhibit this type of concern back in the Obamacare days. One feature of the bill is something Ted Cruz added… Read more »

Tax Rates: Reagan vs. Obama

Now that we’re talking about taxing the rich more and face the specter of all the Bush tax cuts being eliminated, I thought I’d look up some figures from the 1980s to see what happened when Ronald Reagan lowered the tax rates. How did this affect revenue? An article from the Cato Institute provides the numbers. The author of the article, Richard Rahn, notes that most of the Reagan tax cuts were applied to those in the middle- and lower-income… Read more »

Tax Cuts & the Fiscal Cliff

Let’s return to fiscal news today. Are you aware that the Bush tax cuts—you know, those awful tax breaks that benefit only the wealthy—are due to end in January? If that happens, we will all find out soon enough that they actually were a benefit for everyone. Democrats play politics with this, seeking to extend them only for the “non-rich.” That posture is intended to portray them as for the middle class. What they don’t tell you is that the… Read more »

Bush's Decisions

Over Christmas, I took the opportunity to read former President Bush’s new book Decision Points. I did so for two reasons: first, I really wanted to “hear” what he had to say; second, as an American historian, I need to be up to speed on how this former president defends his actions. Let me begin with what I consider to be its strengths. The first strength is Bush’s informal writing style. You get the impression this is exactly how he… Read more »

The Media's Perspective on 2010

I love all those year-in-review segments on the news channels. Sometimes they are interesting; other times, they are rather humorous. For example, in dissecting why the November elections turned out as they did, you might hear something like this: The answers are not all that difficult to discern. Yet the media continues to portray political developments in the best light possible for the administration: There’s also a lot of talk about President Obama veering to the center of the political… Read more »

Obama's Tactics

The proposed tax deal is still the talk of the political world. First, there’s the substance, which is good with respect to maintaining the Bush tax cuts, but not so good on unemployment benefits and the estate tax. Second, there’s the politics of it all. That’s where the president fell down on the job completely. His own party is hopping mad at him, primarily because he didn’t include them in the negotiations. This is not a man who knows how… Read more »