Americas deficit problem, says National Review ‘s Kevin D. Williamson , is that the rich dont have enough money. Even if you raise taxes on everyone earning $250,000 a year, you couldn’t raise enough revenue to cover this year’s deficit:
Nonetheless, there arent that many of them. In fact, in 2006, the Census Bureau found only 2.2 million households earning more than $250,000. And most of those are closer to the Lubbock city manager than to Carlos Slim, income-wise. To jump from the 50th to the 51st percentile isnt that tough; jumping from the 96th to the 97th takes a lot of schmundo. Its lonely at the top.
But say we wanted to balance the budget by jacking up taxes on Club 250K. Thats a problem: The 2012 deficit is forecast to hit $1.1 trillion under Obamas budget. (Thanks, Mr. President!) Spread that deficit over all the households in Club 250K and you have to jack up their taxes by an average of $500,000. Which you simply cant do, since a lot of them dont have $500,000 in income to seize: Most of them are making $250,000 to $450,000 and paying about half in taxes already. You can squeeze that goose all day, but thats not going to make it push out a golden egg.
Okay, so what if you add those making less than 250K a year:
So, how about taxing people who make less than $250,000? Thats probably whom you want to tax, since they are the ones who have the money (Counterintuitive, I know.) The Bush tax cuts for the rich cost the Treasury about $800 billion in forgone revenue; the Bush tax cuts for the middle class cost trillions 2.2 of them, to be precise.
Repealing all of those Bush tax cuts, for rich and middle class alike, gets you about $3 trillion over ten years . The deficit is running from a third to almost half that every year. Will not balance. Does not compute.
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