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Posted at 9:30 AM ET, 12/14/2010

Why the tax deal might fail

By Ezra Klein

palintax.JPG

I listed some of the conservative critics of the tax deal in Wonkbook today (Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, the Tea Party Patriots, Charles Krauthammer), but Playbook shows their ranks are growing: Mitt Romney has an op-ed in USA Today saying the tax deal gives "President Obama ... reason to celebrate. The deal delivers short-term economic stimulus, and it does so at the very time he wants it most, before the 2012 elections." He's joined by Rep. Darrell Issa, who says the compromise is "an incomplete effort that fails to create a permanent tax structure giving businesses the kind of long-term predictability needed to support investment, economic growth and job creation."

With Palin, Romney, Limbaugh and the largest tea party group on the same side of this, I'd bet there are plenty of elected Republicans looking to bail. What they need is an excuse. If the House Democrats manage to make any real changes to the deal, they'll have one -- and so will John Boehner and Mitch McConnell.

At this point, both sides have to seriously ask themselves: Who gets a better deal if the compromise framework collapses? Republicans know that Democrats -- and Obama in particular -- have more to lose if the economy takes another hit. The president said as much at his news conference. But they also know the tax deal is popular, and if they blow it up over something unpopular, like cuts for the very richest Americans, the public might turn on them. It's not an easy calculus, for either side.

Photo credit: Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post.

By Ezra Klein  | December 14, 2010; 9:30 AM ET
Categories:  Taxes  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Wonkbook: Tax plan proceeds with high public support; judge rules against health mandate; Summers final speech
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Comments

"President Obama ... reason to celebrate. The deal delivers short-term economic stimulus, and it does so at the very time he wants it most, before the 2012 elections."

So Romney is essentially implying that this bill is a bad thing, in part, because it will boost the economy over the couple of years, and that in turn might hurt Republicans' election prospects. Really quite worrying.

Posted by: bigmandave | December 14, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Did we elect these people to do nothing more than worry about the political ramifications of the things they do?

Posted by: dane1 | December 14, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

mitt romney is a stereotype. holding him as some sort of representation of the GOP is wishful thinking because his motives are so easy to dismiss. As a conservative, i agree that he's full of crap and that sentiments like those are counterproductive. Krauthammer's criticism is much more valid and should be the taken the standard conservative position.

Posted by: batigol85 | December 14, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Well, Krauthammer's position isn't all that different:

"At great cost that will have to be paid after this newest free lunch, the package will add as much as 1 percent to GDP and lower the unemployment rate by about 1.5 percentage points. That could easily be the difference between victory and defeat in 2012."

The idea that conservatives should be opposing measures that will increase economic growth and reduce unemployment, because those things will hurt their own electoral prospects, is actually more than worrying.

Posted by: bigmandave | December 14, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Too easy, Ezra. If the tax deal falls through, Boehner and McConnell get to rewrite it from scratch come January. Democrats get much less from the deal - no UI extension, perhaps, and Republicans get more, maybe even a permanent extension of the rates. They don't care about short-term fallout because voter amnesia will set in by the time they have to trot out their candidates for 2012.

Posted by: fishellb | December 14, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

So much for all the blabber about "the American people. It's all about ousting Obama and saving the Republican establishment. Naysayers as usual. And this is only December. We have a bad two years ahead.

Posted by: interactingdc | December 14, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Incidentally, it's quite funny watching conservative pundits try to meld their heads around their own disingenuous positions. Tax cuts should never have to be paid for! Unless, of course, they're tax cuts which will increase economic growth and thus benefit Obama's reelection chances, in which case we cannot afford them! Unless those types of tax cuts also happen to benefit the very rich, in which case we don't need to afford them because they will create enough economic growth to pay for themselves!

It's a wonder their heads aren't exploding.

Posted by: bigmandave | December 14, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

TARP didn't pass on the first go around.

Posted by: tuber | December 14, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Folks, conservatives are bringing up 2012 because this deal does nothing to fundamentally alter the current tax landscape. This compromise doesn't really bring much substance to the table. It potentially robs SS at the expense of a common sense solution to corporate taxes. As Rep. Issa said, businesses don't want a a two-year extension - they want a permanent one so that they can plan accordingly. Business' long-term planning has been adversely affected since Obama became POTUS. Seemingly every successful demographic has been under verbal attack at one point or another during his brief reign. A two-year extension only puts off the inevitable class warfare discussions temporarily. Let's have the debate now, not after the 2012 elections.

And those of you decrying the intrusion of politics into decision-making at the highest levels are just not being realistic and probably are neglectful of our great history.

For the record, I voted for the current POTUS although I do have buyer's remorse.

Posted by: lingering_lead | December 14, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

I've been saying all along that this move is politically more brilliant than people give it credit for. The reason is that it drives a wedge in the Republican party between those who thrive on tax cuts and those who thrive on hating Obama. Couple this with a vote to raise the debt ceiling and I think we'll see more Republicans getting primaried in 2012 over this. The establishment will also have to work harder to keep Palin from being the nominee, which sows further dissent in their ranks.

Posted by: willows1 | December 14, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Blow the MF'er up. Should be a straight up or down vote on making all the existing rates permanent.

Posted by: DaMan2 | December 14, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

i contend that we must evaluate all the programs and departments that currently make up - 'the federal government'.

if we are honest, we will end up admitting that at least 1/2 of these entities have nothing to do w/ governance of the nation and its citizens.

all other necessary SERVICES are best provided at the LOCAL level.

before we decide on a new, or simply tweeked tax code, we need to first decide EXACYLY what will be paid for. only then, can we come up w/ a fair and equitible way to collect the funds NECESSARY to pay for our federal government.

Posted by: boblesch | December 14, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

The notion that businesses are being hurt by the "uncertainty" of not knowing whether their tax rate will be the current one or 2% higher is ridiculous. Absolute nonsense. I run a successful business, all my energies are focused on maximizing my profit. That is all I worry about. To think I would hesitate to make a move because of a 2% difference in my tax rate is laughable.

Businesses' long-term planning is being hurt....these people either know nothing about business or are lying to you. If it was a 15%-20% rise in tax rates that would have an effect.....but 2%? Seriously?

Posted by: maurban | December 14, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

The democrats are going to hold their nose and pass this bill, as is, if necessary. They are not going to allow UI benefits to expire during Christmas and they are not going to allow everyone's taxes to increase because they are trying to win a short battle that will cost them the long term war.

The GOP has lost their leverage here. They are no longer in the seat to proclaim an aversion to bills that explode the deficit so long as they are the one laying the charge.

The Democrats should take the deal and make it an issue in 2012. That is the best option for the American people and in their long term best interest.

Posted by: concernedaboutdc | December 14, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

At this point, both sides have to seriously ask themselves: Who gets a better deal if the compromise framework collapses?

=======================================

Neither. The reason why the deal is polling so well is because of the bipartisanship that went into it. The best thing the leadership of both parties can do is to ignore the ideologues, pass the deal and get out of town.

Posted by: bbface21 | December 14, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

McConnell's hubris and stupidity astounds me. Obama brilliantly outmaneuvered him. As long as Pelosi was not part of the negotiations, this agreement was never really a deal.

Now Obama can watch it blow up, see the House Democrats excise the estate tax and upper tier income tax portions, and watch Senate Republicans "block an agreement" over protections for the wealthy.

Obama laid a nice trap, together with the Brer Rabbit act last week when he supposedly "got mad" at the left.

Posted by: ElGipper | December 14, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

The Push on the Rope Republicans
do not care about the Country.

IT is all about unseating President Obama.

Because they know they do not have
a candidate
who can govern the country
for the next 20 years
after President Obama
retires as President 2017.

IF what they are promoting the new generation of politicians like O'Donnell, Palin and Limbaugh as leadership.

There is no hope for the GOP.
Other than the party of the
SPOILED RICH ELITES
and
RIGHT WING HATE MONGERING Groups
that also validate
it through
Practices Propaganda Ignorance
of clueless Xians
and
the Flag.

Posted by: pdq2 | December 14, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

The notion that businesses are being hurt by the "uncertainty" of not knowing whether their tax rate will be the current one or 2% higher is ridiculous. Absolute nonsense. I run a successful business, all my energies are focused on maximizing my profit. That is all I worry about. To think I would hesitate to make a move because of a 2% difference in my tax rate is laughable.

Businesses' long-term planning is being hurt....these people either know nothing about business or are lying to you. If it was a 15%-20% rise in tax rates that would have an effect.....but 2%? Seriously?

Posted by: maurban | December 14, 2010 10:39 AM |
---------------------------------------
Let's see... the majority of small businesses are pass-through entities. Profits are reported on your 1040 and tax is paid. As somebody who runs a "successful business," I'm sure you or your CPA knows that. Will the current 35% top marginal income tax rate stay the same for the forseeable future or will it increase to 39.6% on 1.1.13 (a 4.6% increase)? If it does increase to 39.6%, will the .9% medicare surtax on folks earning more than $250K (i.e. most successful business owners) be implemented? Will the 3.8% Medicare surtax on net investment income be in effect for forks earning more than $250K?

By my rather simple math, we're looking at a potential increase on up to 9.3% for the highest earning folks by 1.1.13. That is unacceptable, unrealistic and tantamount to class warfare.

I have no idea where you get your 2% tax increase argument. Perhaps you're confusing it with the 2% FICA tax rebate that is applicable only to employees and not employers.

In all honesty, don't weigh in on a tax argument when you don't know the facts. Don't let your emotions regarding the political realities that we currently face cloud your ability to see through the smoke.

Posted by: lingering_lead | December 14, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Tax cuts for the wealthy is way too high a price to pay to borrow money from our own future.

Makes no sense.

It's like borrowing money to supplement your pay, and giving money to your neighbor for the privilege.

Posted by: Benson | December 14, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

I do think this is a nice news cycle victory for Obama, but all that matters for 2012 is jobs, and this bill is perfectly designed to keep the unemployment rate high through November 2012.

If it gets blown up, that would be a huge win for him, but bad ideas refuse to die so I would still expect all the pieces to eventually get passed piecemeal.

Posted by: eggnogfool | December 14, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

PLEASE KILL THIS AND MAKE IT RIGHT.

Posted by: crrobin | December 14, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

If this bill fails, the Democrats will be out of power for a generation.

Posted by: Ombudsman1 | December 14, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

In other words, the GOP admits they are saboteurs and care about nothing except their own election prospects.

Why oh why Americans support these goons is beyond me. Actually, that's not true. I know why. And it's all about minorities, guns, taxes, or religion.

Posted by: lauren2010 | December 14, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

I think tax cuts for the rich are bad for America and would have voted against them and let the whole thing expire if I ran the zoo, but the notion, which is very real, that Republicans would actively engage in sabbotage of the American economy in order to influence an election is what everyone should be most disturbed and outraged about. If they only had a brain . . .

Posted by: zorro2 | December 14, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

"President Obama ... reason to celebrate. The deal delivers short-term economic stimulus, and it does so at the very time he wants it most, before the 2012 elections."

So Romney is essentially implying that this bill is a bad thing, in part, because it will boost the economy over the couple of years, and that in turn might hurt Republicans' election prospects. Really quite worrying.

Posted by: bigmandave
=========================
No........future President Romney is saying that we are "kicking the can down the road again".

Romney is saying that tax rates STILL remain influx because we have not settle what the tax rates will be in two years.

This creates "uncertainity" within the markets and business community, which Romney KNOWS better than any politician.

Let's stop farting around in 2012 and hire/elect the most qualified candidate.

Mitt Romney / Marco Rubio for pragmatic fiscal conservatism.......

Posted by: allenridge | December 14, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Deficit deficit deficit thats all we heard leading up to the Midterm Election. The champions of the Too Much Deficit spending were the Tea Party Activist. Well ---the first Act that the Republicans engaged in was expanding the deficit to the tune of over 100 Billion per year. The Estate Tax reductiuon will cost over 50 Billion. What wrong with having a 5Million Exemption that will cover most of the High Earners. This extra Estate Tax Reduction will coper people like the Waltons--Wall Mart-- The Mars Family Candy Bars--The Gilton Family ect these people can afford to pay. They do not need a give Away. This new Estate Tax Deal will reap them Billions---Come On.
So gere we are fussing about the deficit and the first thing the Republicans did was explode the deficit.
Is Obama a gebious or are the Republicans so incompetent that their only intention was pleasing their big money masters. and they held Obama and the Middle Class JOSTAGE to get their way.

Posted by: Carprin | December 14, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Bailing on the compromise is a win for Obama anyways:

1. Allowing all the tax cuts to expire pleases the most left-wing members of the base who are bordering on revolt and aides in relieving the budget deficit, which was a main line of Republican attack.

2. Having the right-wing of the Republican party responsible for blocking it, led by Tea Party icons who ran against the debt, gives him a foil to say "I was reasonable, I made a major compromise and the Republican congressional leadership was behind it, your taxes going up is the fault of radical Republicans."

3. It is just more proof that for all their talk about taxes, the deficit, etc., the discussion points here clearly show once again Republicans agenda #1 - don't do anything that has any chance of benefitting Obama. Country first? Yeah right.

Posted by: kreuz_missile | December 14, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

How many times are we going to expect tax cuts to fix all the problems in the economy, only to be disappointed when they fail?

We had two TRILLION in tax cuts last decade. We should all be living in Disney World right now, if that was the magic elixir.

We have been cutting taxes for 30 years, during the same stretch that we have witnessed our economic decline.

Ugh... What is the definition of insanity again?

Posted by: rat-raceparent | December 14, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

By my rather simple math, we're looking at a potential increase on up to 9.3% for the highest earning folks by 1.1.13. That is unacceptable, unrealistic and tantamount to class warfare.

Posted by: lingering_lead
=====================================

CLASS WARFARE??
Damn Right !!

the GREEDY Super Wealthy Declared WAR against the Citizens of the US

The War for Povery and Slavery..
with
Trickle DOWN Supply Side Economics..

AND the so called conservatives
(Should be called the DICTATORS)
ONLY goal
is to unseat President Obama.

RAISE TAXES and PAY OFF THE DEBT..

Posted by: pdq2 | December 14, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

For Romney, it is all about political calculus. Forget that the purpose is to serve the public interest. What a poor president he would make!

Posted by: CarolGBOS | December 14, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Death tax should be zero. Why should I be taxed on my assets and then my survivors taxed again on them. Sorry the ahve nots can not have my assets. its unfair to farmers and ranchers like myself. Exemption up until the first 5 million. Oh thanks Republican punks for this compromise. My first 100 acres, cars, tractors and 1 barn puts me over this limit. Stupid professional left needs to relaize they will get a worse deal if this doesn't pass. No we need to do away with all farm subsidies and ethanol subsidies. We also need to insist are trading partners do the same or slam them with puntive traffis and duties. And if the WTO doesn't like it tell them to pound sand.

We need to move to flat tax with a small VAT. Oops can't have that it will put too many tax lawyer scum and accoutnats out of business.

I earned my money the old fashion way I worked for it. Folks who dont own property and don't pay Federal income taxes ie they
dont get more back in credits etc must not be allowed to vote. Only those folks who contribute to tax base and own proeprty should be allowed to vote. and please Comrade barry send palin and Beck into rendition somewhere far far away.

Posted by: sheepherder | December 14, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

if this bill fails, and is sabotaged, by the right and the self-righteous left....where are we going to be?????

things are starting to feel very hopeless.
all of this political posturing, is going to leave many people completely vulnerable and unsafe, and as far as i can see, leave us without additional stimulus to help us to get back on track.

what bernie sanders and his sympathizers on the right and the left, manage to destroy this, what is going to be gained?
what is the left trying to gain by this, also?
to destroy everything that our president is trying to do?

i know i am not the only american who feels very sad about all of this.
does bernie sanders think that if his wishes to defeat this, come true, that it is going to lead to a better outcome?
.........everytime the left weakens president obama and tries to tie his hands, more power is given over to a party that is intimidated by the tea party and worse.
i am not so politically or economically astute, but this is surely a scary scenario.
if this is overturned, it is going to be a very sorry day for us.
very sorry, indeed.

Posted by: jkaren | December 14, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

And why Ezra Klein are you showing a picture of Palin looking like a total witch with no caption whatsoever? What does Palin have to do with the tax pkg failing and who cares what she thinks about the tax pkg? Come on....terrible journalism.

Posted by: pkbishop1 | December 14, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

So now it is official that the only thing that the GOP Congress cares about is politics, not that I think it is going to hurt them at all since that is all the American public seems to care about as well.

Noone is actually interested in addressing the real problems facing the country.

Posted by: MarcMyWords | December 14, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

"Why the tax deal might fail"

Wow Ezra! You are REALLY wet behind the ears. The Repubs will stick to the deal they cut with Obie. The ONLY threat to the bill as negotiated, is from the left.

Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

So, again, the Republicans are totally willing to force failure on the American People just to spite one man.

The Republicans' citizenship in this country needs to be revoked.

Republicans are too small minded, and to unwilling to do what's best for this country. Republicans have spent years trying to bring this country down to its knees, and they've been successful to a large extent.

It's time to load up the whackos and ship them into outer space.

Republicans are NOT contemplating success for this country, only failure.

And I've never seen a more miserable, hateful bunch either. No matter what happens, such as their success at the polls last November, they're still just a miserable, sour, hateful bunch of sadsacks.


Posted by: lindalovejones | December 14, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

LATEST NEWS:

Obama is hiring former President G.W. Bush as his new top financial adviser.

Obama, in his weekly radio address, declared that this move alone will potentially create 10 millions new jobs within the next six months or thereabout.

Posted by: jmljep | December 14, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

So basically the Republicans are worried that this may actually help the economy because Obama may get some of the credit so rather than allow the chance of Obama getting any sort of credit, they are willing to take steps counter-productive to the overall health of the economy.

Country first? What a crock.

Posted by: cjpotter19 | December 14, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

" showing a picture of Palin looking like a total witch with no caption whatsoever? What does Palin have to do with the tax pkg failing and who cares what she thinks about the tax pkg?

because sarah palin is the quintessence of the tea party movement...because she is the twinspirit of rush limbaugh and the force of charisma and arrogance that in some psychic way, gives life and power and force to the tea party movement, to arrogance and intellectual dishonesty and thrives on disharmony and ill-being.
and because it is her power and leadership that scares other more moderate republicans from doing the correct thing.
no-one in her party will cross her, or rush limbaugh...
it is easier to shake hands with the devil, i guess....than to risk their political capital, and their sympathy for the american people, and their integrity and concern for the lives and well-being of people truly hanging in the balance.

what a sorry time.
everyone has a price. ...and the devil knows how to strike an exact bargain, with prestige, bruised and broken egos, money, power....there is a tool to use for every situation.

a true, faustian bargain, among the republicans....if this occurs.

hard to watch all of this.

Posted by: jkaren | December 14, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

So we elected a republican majority so they could concentrate on extending their republican majority. Not fix the nations problems. See people? If the republicans think its worth the risk they will be making the same mistakes as they did in 94, hurting their own image in their effort to try to bring down a president. By 1996 Bill Clinton was viewed as a compromising figure trying to move the country forward and the republican congress was viewed as a bunch of vindictive politicians hell bent on regaining the white house at the expense of the american people. I guess they want to spend their political clout trying to regain the white house instead of trying to help the american people. Obama Must Fail!!!!!! Remember that. They would vote against their own policy if it means Obama will benefit politically from it.

Posted by: ged0386 | December 14, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Our Government and Congress are involved in the greatest Ponzi scheme this world has ever known. My suggestion: hire Madoff. At least he knew what he was doing, on a bi-partisan way.

Posted by: jmljep | December 14, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Farm-state senators have apparently succeeded in adding an extension of the ethanol tax credit, which is scheduled to expire at the end of the year, to the tax bill now working its way through Congress.

While that news is disheartening enough, the wind-energy business — the electricity sector’s equivalent of the ethanol scam — may also be winning in its effort to garner more federal subsidies. It is pushing lame-duck legislators to extend a part of the stimulus package known as the Section 1603 tax credit, which gives cash directly to wind-project developers. But what the wind boosters really need to keep their struggling business afloat is a mandate requiring the production of renewable electricity — at least 15 percent by 2020. And some Democratic senators are pushing a bill that would do just that.

If this is true, the need to kill the bill. No newspapers are telling the American people what's in this bill.

Posted by: tonyjm | December 14, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

First off if it a tax increase not a tax cut. Our taxes wont be going down from where it is at now.
Second off when we REDUCE government spending and cut the size of government we will pay down on the deficit. As the socialist countries in Europe are doing now. When SSI and medicaid where first created they where safety nets meant to supplement your retirement not BE your retirement. Like a vitamin before a main meal. if you are not saving now for retirement then you are a dragging down our economy by expecting others to pay for your life style now. Cut off your kids cell phones, drop cable, and you don't need a new car until you can afford it. Later down the line you wont be thinking about SSI and will be grateful unless the socialist are running things. Think before you spend. Do I really need this or want it.

Posted by: texasoil | December 14, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

EZ. In the evenings I listen to Bill O’Reilly’s comments to get a basic viewpoint. Then I wake up in the morning and read the WP’s comments to get another viewpoint. What’s the reason? I need both sources of opinions so I can filter out all the extreme crap. That’s what middle of the road folks do. America’s voters are not splitting in opinion. They are uniting. EZ, thank you for your special brand of extreme.

Posted by: Budpratt1 | December 14, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Here is a question? If tax breaks for the wealthy is such a good thing for the economy and unemployment, and the bush tax cuts are currently in place, Why arent they helping the economy and unemployment now? Is it just me who wonders?

Posted by: ged0386 | December 14, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Ezra, could you compile a BIGGER list of people whose opinions no longer matter now that the election is over? They didn't get the memo that the Republican establishment is back in power and it's time for them to go home. Call it "Michael Steele Syndrome" the inability to know when you're expected to exit!

Posted by: 54465446 | December 14, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

If House Demcorats mess with the inheritance tax like they plan to, the deal may die.

Posted by: moebius22 | December 14, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

I am not following Romney's logic here. He seems to be saying this is a good deal for the President because it will stimulate economic growth over the next two years. And that is a bad thing how? Because it will help Obama. Oh I get it. Now I remember. The objective isn't growing the economy and bringing jobs back. The objective is making Obama a one term President, even if it means destroying American families. Got it!

Posted by: jaxas70 | December 14, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Death tax should be zero. Why should I be taxed on my assets and then my survivors taxed again on them. Sorry the ahve nots can not have my assets. its unfair to farmers and ranchers like myself.
Posted by: sheepherder
===================

If you were a REAL ma/pa owned farm I would agree.
BUT
NOT Corporate Farms..

BTW You LIE
YOU are NOT a Farmer.
You gave yourself away what you are a Professional GOP PAID Poster in your 3rd sentence.

I got the same talking point today too.

Posted by: pdq2 | December 14, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

All of the members of Congress should be "fired"! They are so busy worrying about themselves and their political aspirations and how they can "stick it to the other party" that they cannot focus on doing what is right or on the American public that elected them in the first place!

Posted by: burnie4241 | December 14, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Death tax should be zero. Why should I be taxed on my assets and then my survivors taxed again on them. Sorry the ahve nots can not have my assets. its unfair to farmers and ranchers like myself. Exemption up until the first 5 million. Oh thanks Republican punks for this compromise. My first 100 acres, cars, tractors and 1 barn puts me over this limit. Stupid professional left needs to relaize they will get a worse deal if this doesn't pass. No we need to do away with all farm subsidies and ethanol subsidies. We also need to insist are trading partners do the same or slam them with puntive traffis and duties. And if the WTO doesn't like it tell them to pound sand.

We need to move to flat tax with a small VAT. Oops can't have that it will put too many tax lawyer scum and accoutnats out of business.

I earned my money the old fashion way I worked for it. Folks who dont own property and don't pay Federal income taxes ie they
dont get more back in credits etc must not be allowed to vote. Only those folks who contribute to tax base and own proeprty should be allowed to vote. and please Comrade barry send palin and Beck into rendition somewhere far far away.

Posted by: sheepherder |

***************************************
Unless your children are partners in your farm, legally, they are "have-nots" until you give them money when you kick the bucket. The fact that you have a lot more means that you can do a lot more to avoid estate taxes in the first place, should they exist for you. If you haven't done your homework on this, why don't you start now???? Make sure your estate is settled quickly, you avoid additional yearly expenses that way.

Folks who don't "own property" do pay taxes. They pay rent, which pays the taxes. If you lease your land, you'd certainly ask for enough to pay the taxes on it, wouldn't you. So, in effect, renters subsidize the payment of property tax to the landlord.

As for not being able to vote if you don't own property - that's a sure way to a feudal society. But, perhaps that's what you really want....

Posted by: MichelleKinPA | December 14, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

In their Obama must fail agenda they are going to play right into his hands. Like I said, republicans are only interested in winning elections and maintaining power. Nothing else. Now that they are a majority they cant sit on the sidelines criticizing Obama they actually have to say yes to something. They cant say No to their own policies. And if the tea party is true to its word they are suppose to reject the bush tax cuts on fiscal reasons alone. It increases the deficit doesnt it? But the catch 22 is its not Obamas proposal to extend tax cuts for the wealthy its the republicans and he is just going along with to get unemployment extensions and tax cuts for the middle class it so if it does not pass republicans look bad and if it does pass Obama looks like he is willing to compromise for the greater good along with the republicans. The wost think that could have happened to the GOP in regards to 2012 presidential elections is winning back a majority in 2010. Now they cant play the minority trying to stop the left wing majority role anymore. Obama is now the minority. No pun intended.

Posted by: ged0386 | December 14, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

This bill is a train wreck for Democrats. It says that they are weak (again), and it reinforces the notion that tax cuts are everything, oh and we will hear nothing but deficit crisis going forward (bye bye Social Security).

Republicans, realizing that they are dealing with some of the most spineless politicians to ever crawl the planet are doing what any good negotiator would do - demand more.

Posted by: splamco | December 14, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

With the pork that Reid and Pelosi and friends are adding to this tax bill the reasons to adopt this bill are being destroyed by greed.

Posted by: mlbduffy | December 14, 2010 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Tax cut deal fails, Dems take the blame, Republicans pass the bill they want in January and people are happy. Unless Obama vetoes it, then the Dems take the blame again.

Posted by: ronjaboy | December 14, 2010 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Typical.

The economy be damned, if the Republicans can find a way to deny responsibility for it, or, better yet, blame Democrats.

This is the character of the Republican party. They're like the Whigs, abandoning all sense of proportion or duty in the mindless pursuit of petty power. They have abandoned the American people, and deserve for the American people to respond in kind.

Posted by: lonquest | December 14, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Whether this passes or fails, the Democrats will look bad. This is because they're terrible about getting out a solid message, while the Republicans are masters. The very fact that Republicans have managed to get a tax cut for the rich, while looking like saviors, says it all.

Posted by: EvilOverlord | December 14, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

@ronjaboy:

How are Republicans going to have no problem passing legislation through the senate?

Posted by: eggnogfool | December 14, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Typical.

The economy be damned, if the Republicans can find a way to deny responsibility for it, or, better yet, blame Democrats.

This is the character of the Republican party. They're like the Whigs, abandoning all sense of proportion or duty in the mindless pursuit of petty power and empty ideology. They have abandoned the American people, and deserve for the American people to respond in kind.

Ideology is usually divorced from reality, and the Republicans are all about ideology these days. It should be no surprise that their duty to the Constitution and to the American people get about the same consideration as a deadbeat father gives to child support.

Posted by: lonquest | December 14, 2010 11:55 AM | Report abuse

Lame-as-F@#k Congress
Here's a tribute to a few Republican senators who find comfort and advantage in invoking the heroes of 9/11 but refuse to give them health care.

http://www.thedailyshow.com/fu...

Posted by: sherardg | December 14, 2010 12:01 PM | Report abuse

So the Republicans are going to sink the tax cut/unemployment benefit extention, and the country with it, so that the Democrats look bad. Oh well, the rich won't suffer too much. Well Independents, are you happy for voting in all those Republicans now?

When will the Republicans do what is best for our country and our people instead of what is good only for the Republican party? Probably never.

Posted by: Lefty_ | December 14, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Tax cut deal fails, Dems take the blame, Republicans pass the bill they want in January and people are happy. Unless Obama vetoes it, then the Dems take the blame again.

Posted by: ronjaboy

===========================================

True, and Obama knows it since Gibbs pretty much said so last week.

All the gnashing of teeth from the left shows Obama is trying hard to get the center and Independents back.

Posted by: bbface21 | December 14, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Folks would do well to actually read Romney's op-ed before using Klein's biased reporting of it to arrive at misguided conclusions. It's well-written and easy to understand, even for the GED folks out there.

A temporary tax deal will not spur the same kind of growth that a permanent tax deal would. There is still too much uncertainty. He says the 2% FICA tax reduction will only help those currently employed and will not help the employers hire more workers because there is nothing reducing the cost of hiring. This doesn't address unemployment.

Yet, all you lemmings are capable of is misrepresenting his position (despite the fact that you could just read it for yourselves) and arriving at ad hominem and inflammatory generalizations about those with whom you disagree.

Such simple minds.

Posted by: lingering_lead | December 14, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

sheepherder:

If you really WERE a sheepherder, then you have spent your whole life existing on Federal subsidies for what is essentially a dying industry. Be happy that the Federal government ENABLED you to exist for so long as a buggy whip manufacturer and pass along anything to your children other than bankruptcy!

Posted by: 54465446 | December 14, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

"Republicans pass the bill they want in January and people are happy"
__________

Okay, so the House passes a tax cut bill that never even gets to the president for a veto because the Republicans don't control the Senate, and that makes people happy?

Posted by: writinron | December 14, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

mibduffy wrote:

"With the pork that Reid and Pelosi and friends are adding to this tax bill the reasons to adopt this bill are being destroyed by greed"

Wrong word placement. The whole reason for the existence of this bill is greed!

Posted by: 54465446 | December 14, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

One of the amazing things about the Republicans today is that they will sacrifice the welfare of the nation for their own political gain.

I don't pretend to know if this tax deal will really help the economy, but it is almost treasonous for the Republicans to seek to keep the economy bad for their own political gain.

And it's a tragedy that the American public can't see through its blinders of bigotry that the Republicans want the economy to get worse instead of continue to improve for their own political gain.

The Republicans have, indeed, become an unpatriotic, treasonous political party -- just apply their own standards toward anybody who criticized President Bush and his policies. They've gone far beyond the criticism Bush received as they've moved into a position of sabotaging the Obama administration to assure he is nor re-elected. Heck, just watch the video of Senate leader Mitch O'Connell from Nov 5, 2008 where he quite explicitly states that the goal of the Republican Party is to make sure President Obama is not re-elected.

Posted by: dl49 | December 14, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

i wonder how many people who post on here are actually going to benefit from the upper level tax cuts and the estate tax break, as compared to the number of writers and members of congress who support this.

Posted by: blinwilly | December 14, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Erza Klein is an arch-leftist and everyone knows this fact. You think that we believe anything this guy says? No. Obama has so screwed up this nation, it could take 20 years to come back. Mr. Klein forgets the most important fact of today, we know this Obama now and we find him a total fraud and disgusting.

Posted by: walterndebby | December 14, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Ezra skillfully shows the GOP to be their usual hyper-partisan rule or ruin bunch and then blames the House Dems should this fall apart. Blame the Republicans!!

So much of the push back against liberals on this has taken the line that if they really cared about the poor they would take the deal, or if they really cared about a political win they would take the deal. Hate them all you want but the liberals are the ones in this debate actually trying to stop the redistribution upward in wealth that this deal represents. To blame them for making that dynamic worse is to say up is down.

If Obama can call the Repubs hostage takers on tax cuts then his posturing towards the House liberals is the same. Take this rotten deal or the poor get it right between the eyes, and btw you made me pull the trigger.

Ever wonder why Obama didn't just go ahead with no estate tax limit and permanent low rates at the top? Thank the House Dems.

Posted by: undisclosedangler | December 14, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

If ever any "bill" needed to be killed it would be this abomination! How a Government where Democrats have a huge majority in the house, a huge majority in the Senate, and a President can create such a bad result for 2 years culminating in the beginning of the destruction of Social Security and the perpetuation of the universally declared bad tax giveaways of the BushCo regime is impossible to understand, much less accept! This is just plain wrong, stupid, and a final, final straw in the destruction of our Republic and the demise of yet another political party into the fatal arms of corporate fascism!

Posted by: CHAOTICIAN101 | December 14, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

"President Obama ... reason to celebrate. The deal delivers short-term economic stimulus, and it does so at the very time he wants it most, before the 2012 elections."

___________

Mitt Romney fails to realize that it is the American people that want the economic stimulus this tax bill will deliver. He obviously wants the people to wait two years for economic relief. Must be nice to have that luxury.

Posted by: antiquepaper1 | December 14, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Don't eat all of the popcorn folks. Save some for Jan. '11 for when the crying drunk clown from Ohio becomes the Republican circus barker.

And all of this is taking place right on the stage of OUR lives!!

Don't help the person that's trying to help. "Make sure he fails." Even if it drags the country down... JUST MAKE DAMN SURE *HE* FAILS!!!! The Republicans are banking on the American people having short memories (thank goodness computers remember) and they will forget whose responsible.

Unbelievable. Just #+&^IN@ unbelievable.

***

Posted by: Evenfoolsarerightsometimes | December 14, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

eggnogfool asked: "How are Republicans going to have no problem passing legislation through the senate?"
------------------------------------
Simple. With the middle class facing tax increases while ~20% are unemployed, the R House will quickly pass the "tax relief bill", it will be sent to the Senate, if the D Senate tries to stop the Tax relief for the middle class, mobs will storm D.C. and put each ones head onto the W.H. front lawn fence. The Dem Senators know this fact, even if you don't.

Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse


"""""""""""""""""""""""""" End Of Social Security COming Soon """""""""" """"""""""""""""""
.
.

"""""""""" To Those who Say President Should Move to CENTER """""""""""""""


President Obama Is Long Long Long Long Time In center or in otherwise
On Republicans Side Just Wake Up Open Your Eyes See The Followings:

"""""""""" FOX Republicans Press Got to sit In Front Row in White House Press Room """"""""""""

1. Mr. Obama Has Been Always Supportive Of 11th Bush Deficit Creator Tax Cut Exactly As Republicans Agenda.

2. Mr. Obama Pushed and Removed """" Public Option From Health Care """" , Forced and tricked Democrats Congress and Senate with the Help Of the People Like "" Blanche L. Lincoln """"""" Exactly As Republicans Asked and Agenda """""""

3. Mr. Obama Forced Senate and Congress to be """ Delayed Health Care Activation Until 2014 """" ,Gave Republicans By Design Around 5 Years to Repeal and Cancel it, """"""" Exactly As Republicans Asked and Agenda """""""

4. Mr. Obama Guantanamo, 2 years later is not Closed yet """"""" Exactly As Republicans Asked and Agenda """""""

5. Mr. Obama .Health Care, It Has Been All the Way Water Down """"""" Exactly As Republicans Asked and Agenda """""""

6. Mr. Obama Never Created Specific and Effective Program Of Job Creation for New Generation and Middle Class.
Instead Spent All His Time Dumping Money To Banks, GM, GoldMan, """"""" Exactly As Bush Republicans Asked and Agenda """""""

7. Mr. Obama JOBS, Instead of Creating Effective JOB Creation Program, Mr. Obama Dumped Money to Wall Street, Banks,
Financial Firms, Witch Did Not Create JOBS, And the Money From U.S.A Bank Went """"""" Offshore That Where the American Jobs Are """"""" Exactly As Republicans Asked and Agenda """""""

8. Mr. Obama On American JOBS Outsource, Did Nothing Absolutely Nothing mean NADA to Stop """""""""" Shipping American Jobs Offshore and Revers The Bush Republicans JOBS OutSourcing Legislation S.1637
""""""" Exactly As Republicans Asked and Agenda """""""

9.Mr. Obama For Tax Cut Give Away to Wealthy wants to Take Money Out Of Social Security Then Claim Social Security Is Brocken and WE HAVE TO FIX IT """"""" Exactly As Republicans Asked and Agenda """""""

10. Mr. Obama Created Republicans Lead Deficit Commission and Put RepublicanS In Charge Of the Leadership of the Commission. Listen to This They Deficit Reduction Commission Under Republican LeaderShip Alan Simpson, Alan Simpson to Eliminate Social Security Is Good Idea. """"""" Exactly As

Republicans Asked and Agenda """""""

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Tax cut deal fails, Dems take the blame, Republicans pass the bill they want in January and people are happy. Unless Obama vetoes it, then the Dems take the blame again.

Posted by: ronjaboy

Okay, so the House passes a tax cut bill that never even gets to the president for a veto because the Republicans don't control the Senate, and that makes people happy?

Posted by: writinron

Thanks writinron for pointing out the fact that RONJABOY, like most republicans, is too stupid to understand how our government works.

ron
you need to go back to shcool

Posted by: strictly_liberal | December 14, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse


Republicans Bush Established Outsource JoBs """""""""""""""""""" Test Mr Obama """""""""""""""""""" JoBs

Test Mr Obama If He should Be ReElected??????????? and Why Should Not Be Elected Again.???????.
Mr. Obama Did or Will Repeal Or Cancel or Reverse Or Ignores Republicans Bush Legislation ( S.1637 ) That Gives Money plus
Everything if American Jobs Are Shipped Offshore To Other Country """.

1. IF Mr OBAMA """ Stopped Stopped "" Clearly Without Manipulation legislatively Through Congress and Senate then and Only Then Vote Yes On His Election.

2. If Mr OBama Again Talked About That "" He will Stop "" American Companies From Shipping an OutSourcing American Jobs
To OffShore As Republicans Bus Established, and Did Nothing About It Again then
Kick Him Out Of and Vote """""""""" No, No, No, No On His ReELection In 2012 """""""""",

And Do Not Let Mr. Obama Trick You By Only Meeting With CEOs Of Americans Companies,, Why Listen to This:

SISCO CEO Said He Wants to Call SISCO a Chines COMPANY Rather An American Company

""""""""""""""""""""" CEOs Will Not Bite On Their Own Hand Mr.Obama """""""""""""""""""""""

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

HEY EZRA, CURIOUS - WHY DO YOU FEEL THE NEED TO SHOW PALIN'S PHOTOGRAPH ON THIS ARTICLE? WHY DO YOU GUYS INSIST ON KEEPING HER FACE OUT THERE WHEN SHE ENGAGES IN NO SERIOUS DIALOGUE?

Posted by: JJHughes99 | December 14, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

"Permanent Tax Cut"?? No such animal. Phrase is political PR setup. Any future modification will have the platform set for mudslinging. Extension upon extension is the closest. Note current talking points on temporary 10 year Bush cuts, GOP states: Dems want largest tax hike ( ignoring it was the largest. 10 year tax cut avoiding vote through GOP budget reconciliation process )

Posted by: lighthouses7 | December 14, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse


Mr. Obama:
Democrats Do not Want A Democrat President With Republicans Agenda.
If Obama thinks that Will be hero by Called Tax Cut man by 2012 and will Gain Republicans Votes>>>>>Sweet Dreams
Mr President Have been Damaging His Relation with Democrats and being confident that At Later Time Will Repair it and Democrats Have No other Choices.
Mr. Obama If Democrats Are at Any how are Stock With Replica of Republicans Agenda,
Then Why Vote For You We Vote Republican


Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

The Republic Party's mantra that rich people need the tax cut so they'll create jobs is utter rubbish.

Bill Gates, Michael Dell and Steve Jobs are kazillionaires, but they have exported TENS OF THOUSANDS of jobs and they make all of their gadgets in CHINA.

If these billionaries get another 10 million each in a tax cut, which we will have to BORROW FROM CHINA, will they bring these jobs home to America, and build factories HERE to make their gadgets? Will they Republic Party? Well?

Posted by: mongolovesheriff | December 14, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

In all honesty, don't weigh in on a tax argument when you don't know the facts. Don't let your emotions regarding the political realities that we currently face cloud your ability to see through the smoke.
______________________

I second the notion that "uncertainty" is handcuffing business is complete bunk. While it might be nice to know the tax rates and the rates do matter to the profits - in reality this has 0 inpact on hiring. First, revenue is everything in business - that is what people are uncertain about that matters. Second, most small business owners don't rely on profits for income - yes really - what they do is pay themselves a salary and possibly consulting fees because its cheaper. There are exactly zero competent businesses in America who are waiting for the tax situation to be resoved. All the good ones are planning out ways to expand market share and increase sales. Only the pikers are worried about what everyone else is doing.

Posted by: bob29 | December 14, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse


Tax cuts for the rich are a bad witches' brew concocted by Obama and the Republicans. They were absolutely unnecessary for a deal.

O'Bummer failed us again.

Posted by: Benson | December 14, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

.
.


""""""""" Mr Obama Claimed The Stimulus Money $800,000,000,000 Is paidBack"""""""

Bank Of America, Wells Fargo, GM Motors, GoldMan Sachs and Other """ Paid Back ""
the The Stimulus Money With Interest and Is On Record.

Mr. Obama many Firms That Borrowed Money Stimulus Have Paid You Back.

""""""""""""" Pay unemployment Benefits From That Cash On Hand DO Not Borrow """"""""""""""

Why Are You Hiding That Money?? and Are You Quite About it ???????????????????
.
.
.
.

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 12:39 PM | Report abuse

This is what we traded for--federal, state, and local government workers, as well as those earning under $20K will see their taxes increase?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/10/obamarepublican-deal-coul_n_795187.html

Posted by: gingles | December 14, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Simple. With the middle class facing tax increases while ~20% are unemployed, the R House will quickly pass the "tax relief bill", it will be sent to the Senate, if the D Senate tries to stop the Tax relief for the middle class, mobs will storm D.C. and put each ones head onto the W.H. front lawn fence. The Dem Senators know this fact, even if you don't.

Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 12:21 PM
___________________________________________
A mental flight of fancy. Illogical.

Posted by: Lefty_ | December 14, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

.
.
.
Just Like Republicans Bush """"""""""""" DUmping Money In U.S Market Banks It Will End Up To Banks Offshore Other Countries """""""""""""""

Mr. President Obama, YOur Bushes 11th Tax Give Away Created Depression Not Only In """""""" United State But Around The whole World """""""""" Make Note Of this And You Heard it From Me.
WHy Did not Put Your Time And Energy ANd Money """"""""" On Job Creating Jobs Creating Jobs Creating """""""""
And""""""""" Stop Stop OUTSOURCING American JoBs OFFSHORE """""""""

Mr OBAMA IF No JOB = NO INCOME = NO TAX RETURN = Just Like Bush for 10 Years WASTED Give Away Money To Wealthy.
MR OBAMA IF NO JOB = NO FOOD
MR OBAMA IF NO JOB = NO INSURANCE
MR OBAMA IF NO JOB = NO School
MR OBAMA IF NO JOB = NO House
MR OBAMA IF NO JOB = do not have Tax Return

Once Again Mr Obama You Got Your Priorities Wrong Just Like Bush and repeating the 11th Borrowing to Give Away to Wealthy.

You Give People $3000 But you make 99% of American People Pay Over 10 years for Wealthy $80,000 in Taxes Over Regular Taxes that Pay.

Thank you But No Thanks
.
.
.
.
.

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

We in Massachusetts know only too well that the only thing Romney believes in is the thing he thinks the most voters want him to believe in. If that changes, he changes.

Posted by: thrh | December 14, 2010 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Ezra, I didn't have to even look to see that this column is linked on the front page today. It always brings out the shouters and name callers en masse!

Posted by: 54465446 | December 14, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Well said! Republicans will keep unemployment as high as they can to win the next election. Let the people be damned.

Republicans - putting personal gain over personal honor.

Posted by: chucky-el | December 14, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

The republicans -- the super-wealthy teabaggers especially -- begged and whined and pleaded for an extension of the Bush tax cuts. If they reject them now because every little detail is not exactly how they wanted it they will come off looking stupid.
=======================================
(I don't just mean Sarah Palin stupid, I mean Rush Limbaugh dressed in diapers and paraded around town stupid)

Posted by: tommytunes | December 14, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Well said! Republicans will keep unemployment as high as they can to win the next election. Let the people be damned.

Republicans - putting personal gain over personal honor.

Posted by: chucky-el | December 14, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Because we're making blanket assumptions of what the public thinks about this issue, it might be useful to look at an actual poll. Here's Bloomberg News on December 8:

"The survey, conducted before, during and after the tax negotiations, shows that only a third support keeping the lower rates for the highest earners, and less than half of those respondents say the breaks for the wealthy should last for a shorter period than cuts for the middle class. Overall, two- thirds of those polled favor a permanent extension of the lower rates for the middle class... More than a fourth say all the tax cuts should be allowed to expire Dec. 31, as scheduled...Still, many of the respondents in the poll conducted Dec. 4-7 said they wouldn’t support the compromise...A plurality of Democrats favor extending the cuts only for middle-class taxpayers, though a third would let all tax cuts expire and use the revenue to help cut the federal budget deficit..."

And again, from December 12:

"While Republican congressional leaders have opposed increases in taxes paid by high-income families, sentiment among the party’s rank and file is mixed. Republicans are divided on eliminating the tax cuts for the wealthy, with 50 percent opposing and 47 percent supporting. An increase in the cap on earnings subject to Social Security taxes splits Republicans almost evenly."

So, umm...yeah. If you're a politician, and these are the poll numbers you're reading, you have but two options: one, roll out a huge propaganda campaign to try and change the poll numbers; two, roll out a huge propaganda campaign portraying yourself as "in tune" with the majority of poll respondents and your opponent as being "out of touch with" said majority's wishes.

Politics 101, ladies and gentlemen. Doesn't matter if you're Republican, Democrat, or Islamo-Fascist-Environmentalist-Socialist-Libertarian.

So what this whole thing comes down to is positioning. Let's say, you're a Democrat. If the tax cuts fail, you say it's because the Republicans wanted cuts for the rich (which the public doesn't like). If they succeed, it's because you wanted cuts for the middle class (which the public supports). If you're a Republican, flip that on its head - if they fail, it's because the Democrats were somehow attacking the middle class, oh, and adding to the deficit, too. If they pass - then you, Republicans, have cut taxes on the middle class, or so the argument should go.

Let the propaganda wars begin. Somehow, I don't think the present White House is in fantastic fighting shape for said contest, but whatever - 2012 is a long, long way away, and who knows how that year will ultimately shape up.

And oh yeah - while this circus is going on, the business of the nation goes by unattended to. I mean, who cares about analyzing what each of these proposals actually means from the standpoint of basic economics, right? Just repeat enough slogans and...wait, didn't Goebbels say the same thing once?

Posted by: Kruzenshtern | December 14, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Mr Obama Claimed The Stimulus Money $800,000,000,000 Is paidBack

Bank Of America, Wells Fargo, GM Motors, GoldMan Sachs and Other Paid Back the The Stimulus Money With Interest and Is On Record.

Mr. Obama many Firms That Borrowed Money Stimulus Have Paid You Back.

Pay unemployment Benefits From That Cash On Hand DO Not Borrow

Why Are You Hiding That Money? and Are You Quite About it ?
Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 12:39 PM
___________________________________________
Wrong. The TARP monies are not on hand. They were debt to start with and "paid back" means "paid back." The debt has been retired. I do not know from where you get your information or understanding of how our government works but you need a new source.

Posted by: Lefty_ | December 14, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

A new large stimulus is certainly going to run up our debt some more. Even in the best case, the stimulus is not likely to improve the economic condition of the voters who swung the last election enough to get them to favor the Democrats in 2012. The Democrats only real chance is forcing the Republicans to accept a substantial part of the responsibility for policies that will continue to cause significant economic pain. Allowing Republicans like Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney to be the voice of sound economic policy while not making them answer for the down side of that policy is the path to Democrat doom.

Posted by: dnjake | December 14, 2010 12:52 PM | Report abuse


To Lefty-

If Tarp Money We Should Have Lower Deficit, Where Is It ????????????????????

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Side note - as a rule, 99% of people who mention TARP either in newspaper articles or on message boards do not have a clue as to a) what the program actually was or b) its role in the financial industry's bail-out, to say nothing of c) its size relative to the overall budget deficit.

Again, Bloomberg News, February 24, 2009, 5:01 GMT:

Total amount PLEDGED by the U.S. Government = $11,623.63 billion ($11.6 trillion)

Total amount USED by the financial sector = $3,800.18 billion ($3.8 trillion)

[Note that this figure includes the $787 billion Stimulus II bill]

TARP amount PLEDGED = $700.00 billion
TARP amount USED = $387.00 billion [A large chunk of this has since been repaid]

Think of it this way - we actually paid $3-$4 trillion PLUS "guaranteed" another $7-$8 trillion "if necessary" (e.g. Citi's bail-out was mostly not TARP, but a $270 billion - IIRC - "guarantee against 90% of future losses on investments into subprime mortgages", or some such nonsense). By comparison, TARP, even before netting out any repayments by the banks over 2009-2010, peaked at $387 billion, about 10% of the total "cash use" or closer to 3%-3.5% of the total amount of "pledged" bail-out funds.

By comparison, the total Federal budget is roughly at around $3 trillion per year. A bit more now, actually. The deficit had been at ~$500-$700 billion per year pre-2008, and at $1.3-$1.5 trillion per year after that, give or take a few (the info is public, if anyone wants to go and look up exact figures).

To paraphrase a famous line - TARP is just a red herring.

Posted by: Kruzenshtern | December 14, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

.
.
.Respond to Lefty:

President Said We Made Extra Money, Tell Me WHere Is Ir ????????
If Tarp Fully Is Paid Back We Should Have Lower Deficit Where s it???????????????????????????????

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Lefty_: "A mental flight of fancy. Illogical."
------------------------------------
Hardly. My predictions, (which are always correct) for this legislation are that it will pass in basically the same form that Obie & the Repubs agreed to and that the Senate Dems won't allow the House left wing maniacs to derail it. Care to bet on it?

Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Did we elect these people to do nothing more than worry about the political ramifications of the things they do?
=====================================
That's what it seems. All the more reason to start tinkering with a new approach/system to governing and legislation (what these people are supposed to be doing).

Posted by: brt30 | December 14, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Lefty_: "A mental flight of fancy. Illogical."
------------------------------------
My predictions, (which are always correct)
Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 1:02 PM
___________________________________________
Re-read post #1.

Posted by: Lefty_ | December 14, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

When we stand divided, how can we expect our country to cease her pitiful decline?

This is not sports fan-clubbing we are talking about here. An avowed Republican spews garbage, and you are for it because..., well, he is a conservative; and deride the sagacity of a Democrat because..., he is a liberal. And vice versa. What is happening to America? Are we experiencing the throes of the demise of a great empire - rotting from within? Why are we accepting the overthrow of sagacious leadership by unbridled rapacity?

We deserve our leaders - in a democracy more than in any other. If we continue to be amenable and susceptible to lies and manipulations, to the wiles of selfish politicians, to the commercials and groups that 'remember' us and pour lies, innuendoes and nasty misrepresentations during campaigns but disappear when its time to govern,then we deserve what we get. They get into office by manipulating us, defer to the insatiable needs of their donors,raise tons of money they'd deploy in manipulating us in the next election to return them to power, and the cycle repeats.
So as long as we remain divided, unsmart, uninformed, and puerile in our imagination, then we are doomed to failure. More sage, less idiocy, please.

Posted by: ijogek | December 14, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

2009, 2010. "Second verse ... same as the first" < 2011, 2012. .... Herman's Hermits. "Im Henery the Eighth I am......." (song).
"Same Old Song". Also "Save O Save".

Posted by: deepthroat21 | December 14, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

To Lefty-

If Tarp Money We Should Have Lower Deficit, Where Is It ????????????????????

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 12:56 PM
___________________________________________
It is lower than it would have been. This is not rocket science.

Posted by: Lefty_ | December 14, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

"Republicans know that Democrats -- and Obama in particular -- have more to lose if the economy takes another hit."

What the?? What about us.. the little people.. we've got the most to lose.
Screw the %1$#! Republicans!

Posted by: cmsatown | December 14, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Lefty_: "Re-read post #1."
------------------------------------
It is simpler for you to just say that you have no confidence in your ability to predict.

Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: cmsatown: "Screw the %1$#! Republicans!"
--------------------------------
Irrelevant. You don't vote R so you don't figure into their equation.

Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Lefty_: "Re-read post #1."
------------------------------------
It is simpler for you to just say that you have no confidence in your ability to predict.
Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 1:14 PM
____________________________________________
You want a prediction? Well, my crystal ball says that the deal will pass in its present form (plus the usual earmarks) before then end of the year. Not being infallable, as you purport to be, I will not be shocked if this prediction is incorrect. However, I believe that we will see my prediction come to fruition well before we see Senators' heads on the White House fence as you predict.

Posted by: Lefty_ | December 14, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Let all Bush Era tax cuts end. The GOP is so spiteful they want higher unemployment and taxes just to spite Obama. With the package on the table; Projected Unemployment rate down from 9.6% to 5.7% and the Deficit as a % of GDP down from 8.9% to 3.7%.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/special/business/tax-cut-compromise/index.html?hpid=topnews

That would be bad news for the fear and hate mongering GOP and Tea Partiers. The Tea Party Caucus has already taken 764 earmarks valued at $1,049,783,150.00

http://washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/2010/12/tea-party-caucus-gets-1-billion-earmarks?sms_ss=twitter&at_xt=4cf7c98d5a083b67,0

Blocking Jobs, blocking Nuclear treaty and inspections, blocking ending tax breaks for the wealthy, blocking ending senate secret holds, blocking election funding transparency; all while apologizing to BP and Coal companies for Americans dying on their property:

Shameless!

Posted by: Airborne82 | December 14, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Airborne82: You stuck that landing. Give 'em h*ll!

Posted by: Lefty_ | December 14, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Tax cuts for Billionaires while American men and women are fighting, dying and experiencing daily casualties in two wars are criminally insane. The GOP is holding nuclear inspections and proliferation, the unemployed, and immigrant children in college and the military hostage to tax cuts for Billionaires and will only extend unemployment payments so long as millionaires and billionaires can contribute less to society and continuing paying the lowest tax rates since the 1950s.

Bush tax cuts cost America $3.7 Trillion over 10 years and $6 Trillion over 2012-2022, all of which will be Borrowed to pay for Defense. Suspension of Estate taxes and lower taxes for capital gains add another Trillion to the deficit. Shielding of all income above $106k from Social Security tax adds another Trillion or two to the deficit. It would have been prudent to let them all expire and then propose new tax relief for only the most destitute poor and middle class.

America’s entire annual defense and war budget of $830~$895 Billion is Borrowed Deficit Spending. Defense spending will be $1.6 Trillion over 2011 & 2012, and $8~$10 Trillion over 10 years. That’s Trillions in Defense spending while Millionaires and Billionaires pay the lowest Income, Estate and Capital gains taxes since 1950. If that is not criminally insane then all the criminals in all the jails should be released immediately. They can do no more damage to society than Trillions in tax cuts for Billionaires borrowed against the future of our Children and country.

http://www.costofwar.com/

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/special/politics/budget-2010/

Troops do the dying, while Billionaires and their lackeys do the whining. End all the Bush era tax cuts and raises taxes to pay our bills. Not possible? Really? Millionaires and Billionaires are paying the lowest tax rates since the 1950s and pay $0.00 in estate taxes in 2010.

Posted by: Airborne82 | December 14, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

The first concern on any pol's agenda is . . . to get reelected. Period. Democrat, Republican, Independent, you name it. Forget about stabilizing the economy or creating jobs. Politicians could care less. They need to feel the wrath of the masses for a change.

Posted by: NEWSOUTH1 | December 14, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

.
.
.

"""""""""" Mr Obama after 2 years Wants To Create Jobs """"""""""

""""If Mr. President is Serious about Creating JOBS First Close Broken Pipe That Leaks American Jobs Offshore Now, """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" Senate Legislation S.1637 """"""""""" """"""""""" """

Mr President Are You Serous On JOBS??? """""""""" Yesterday, Today, Now, This Hour, This Minute, thIs Second and Tomorrow American Jobs Are Being Shipped Offshore and Tax Payers Pay for it """"""""""""""

First Thing First Mr. President """""" Senate Legislation S.1637 It Pays Tax Payers Money to All U.S Firms That SHip American Jobs Offshore Put Stop On It Now Could You ????????????????????????"""""""""""""""""""""""

Mr. President,if You Are Serous Immediately Repeal """"""""" Repeal ( Money Give Away For Send Jobs Offshore Senate Legislation S.1637) Give Exact the Same Money to American Firms That Create JobS Here U.S.A """"""""""""""

Let See After 2 Years Mr President Will Fix this Brocken pipe and Close this Brocken Pipe that Leaks American Jobs Offshre ???????????????????????????????????????
.I bet Mr President will not Let to Come up In the Media
.
.
.
.

.
.
.
.

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Lefty_: "However, I believe that we will see my prediction come to fruition well before we see Senators' heads on the White House fence as you predict."
----------------------------------

WOW! So, you think that if it rains it is much less likely to not rain. Now that took brain power.

ROFLMAO

Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

"What about us.. the little people.. we've got the most to lose.
Screw the %1$#! Republicans!"

Perhaps you should talk to the "little people" who gave the Republicans a landslide victory in the House of Representatives(+63 seats) and 6 more Senate seats.

The "little people" swept into power those who would exacerbate our current economic woes (i.e. more tax cuts for the wealthy and more give aways and subsidies to corporations.

Though I'm not a Republican I hope the Republicans can do something constructive for the country but I'm not too hopefull given the legacy of the GW Bush years.

Stay tuned.

Posted by: montana123 | December 14, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

yeah, sure....they can all have their opinions but not one of them are thinking about how many people are going to get evicted come January because unemployment runs, or has already ran out, on them.

There's nothing wrong with the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, Job Creation Act of 2010.
It has a chance to be revisited.

Senate will probably demand no amendments...the House will amend and defy Senate.....this will go to the "new crew" coming in January....and meanwhile...
cancel Xmas.

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | December 14, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

The tax deal "might" fail? No, it WILL fail and FAIL the middle and working classes of America, just as it did under Reagan and Bush! Tax cuts didn't create more jobs for Americans under their tax cut policies and, if anything, instead, decreased jobs when most American corporations just used their tax savings to outsource jobs overseas (like China and India), invested in non-human capitals, or just sat on those, like they are doing now. Obama knows this well, but caved in to the GOPers' blackmail for his own political survival. What's even worse, he's trying to claim falsely that it will create more domestic jobs if the deal passed, but will cause another recession (double-dip) if it didn't. He didn't just turn into a moderate Democrat. He turned into a Reagan Democrat or, worse, a Bush Democrat!

Posted by: TalkingHead1 | December 14, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Lefty_: "However, I believe that we will see my prediction come to fruition well before we see Senators' heads on the White House fence as you predict."
----------------------------------
WOW! So, you think that if it rains it is much less likely to not rain. Now that took brain power.

ROFLMAO
Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 1:36 PM
___________________________________________
Again, re-read my #1 post. You just can't seem to escape a lack of logic. Keep laughing though. You may find some relief from your weak effort at debate.

Posted by: Lefty_ | December 14, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

""""""""""""" When Bush Said Tax Cut we Asked Show us The Jobs """"""
.
.

"""""""""" Mr Obama after 2 years Wants To Create Jobs """"""""""

""""If Mr. President is Serious about Creating JOBS First Close Broken Pipe That Leaks American Jobs Offshore Now, """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" Senate Legislation S.1637 """"""""""" """"""""""" """

Mr President Are You Serous On JOBS??? """""""""" Yesterday, Today, Now, This Hour, This Minute, thIs Second and Tomorrow American Jobs Are Being Shipped Offshore and Tax Payers Pay for it """"""""""""""

First Thing First Mr. President """""" Senate Legislation S.1637 It Pays Tax Payers Money to All U.S Firms That SHip American Jobs Offshore Put Stop On It Now Could You ????????????????????????"""""""""""""""""""""""

Mr. President,if You Are Serous Immediately Repeal """"""""" Repeal ( Money Give Away For Send Jobs Offshore Senate Legislation S.1637) Give Exact the Same Money to American Firms That Create JobS Here U.S.A """"""""""""""

Let See After 2 Years Mr President Will Fix this Brocken pipe and Close this Brocken Pipe that Leaks American Jobs Offshre ???????????????????????????????????????
.I bet Mr President will not Let to Come up In the Media
.
.
.
.

.
.
.
.

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Lefty_ incorrectly predicted "So the Republicans are going to sink the tax cut/unemployment benefit extention, and the country with it, "
------------------------------------
Quite incorrect.

Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Lefty_ incorrectly predicted "So the Republicans are going to sink the tax cut/unemployment benefit extention, and the country with it, "
------------------------------------
Quite incorrect.

Posted by: illogicbuster | December 14, 2010 1:45 PM
___________________________________________
OK. Here's your chance to redeem yourself. Factually defend that position.

Posted by: Lefty_ | December 14, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

I'm a tree hugging liberal - I think this GOP tax package for the filthy rich ought to be DOA. I think that underfunding Social Security by replacing funds with IOU's from China is stupid! I think borrowing from China to pay millionaires and billionaires is stupid. I say let Bush taxes breaks to the rich increase and I'll cheerfully wave goodbye to mind. Go ahead GOP, do what you say you despise - let taxes increase.....

Posted by: MysteryMovesWashOut | December 14, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

No. That's all I want--no. If you are a real Democrat--no.

Posted by: rusty3 | December 14, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

look at it this way too....

it's all we got goin' for us...no matter if the estate tax is the current controversy in the House.
Nothing better has come down the pike. And in two years we can debate the rich tax cuts.

On unemployment (which is my beef)---even the House's Middle Class Tax Relief Act that got voted down in Senate only had 3 months extension of unemployment. Now, I would have taken that....but 13 months is so much better.

I have stated before that the extensions must last through 2011. You know, as well as I do, nothing will get better for 3 to 5 years. Economists have backed that too.

With 13 months of unemployment, I am sure I will find something. Also, I can fix the car that I had to buy cheap after my 2009 got repossessed. I can file for bankruptcy and buy the 40 dollar packet at Staples....no lawyer mind you. It's sad that I can't even afford to get the packet and file.
I can pay the house taxes and income tax. All going back into the economy.
I really really don't like the idea of unemployment being held hostage.

MAKE THE DEAL !!!!

and afterwards, everyone change to IND. Sick and tired of this bickering and both parties being, now, the party of NO.

Ha anyone heard about what the Senate is currently doing. Today is the recorded vote I believe. The Act should hit the House by tomorrow, CNN is reporting.
We only have 3 days before recess.....
and if one is lucky enough, 2 more weeks of unemployment ---
but they will be on recess and we will lose our benefits over their holiday recess.
It is imperative that this Act pass. Let them change items later. It's like Pelosi said...we need to pass the bill to see what's in it. Well, that is true....we need to pass this so we can see what needs to be revisited. Legislation is only good when it is signed into law and the mistakes are noticed and acted upon afterwards. Look at HCR....passed it and now finding problems that CAN be acted upon. But it passed first.

Like any process...you run the process and see if it has tweaks that need to be made. But at least you comitted to "running the process".


Posted by: TheBabeNemo | December 14, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Obama will never sign off on a permanent extension of the Bush tax cuts. There, that eliminates all uncertainty right up to 2016. If a business can't handle the remaining uncertainty, they deserve to go under. We are not operating in a world where nothing changes. It just seems that way when we contemplate the Congress of the US.

Posted by: fzdybel | December 14, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

.
.
.
Most American People Know Saw, Experienced, That Most Republicans for the Last 30 Years They Destroyed the New Generation ANd Middle Class.
ALmost All AMericans They Look To Democrats to Help them

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

2012 is the election year. He will revisit the tax cuts then. It will make for good fodder to see how this 2012 campaign turns out. The tax cuts (if this Act is passed for two years) will be on the top of the list.

But knowing, right now, that your taxes are going to increase (and increase sizably) on Jan 1st should make anyone madder than spit. Everyone loses if they go on recess and do nothing. Lost in the system of bickering. Never thinking about what is -temporarily- the right thing to do.

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | December 14, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

.
.
.


Republicans Bush Said Tax Cut Creates Jobs:
""""""""' For 10Years We Said Show us The Jobs """"""""""""""""
""""""""' For 10Years We Said Show us The Jobs """"""""""""""""

"""""""""" Mr Obama after 2 years Wants To Create Jobs """"""""""

""""If Mr. President is Serious about Creating JOBS First Close Broken Pipe That Leaks American Jobs Offshore Now, """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" Senate Legislation S.1637 """"""""""" """"""""""" """

Mr President Are You Serous On JOBS??? """""""""" Yesterday, Today, Now, This Hour, This Minute, thIs Second and Tomorrow American Jobs Are Being Shipped Offshore and Tax Payers Pay for it """"""""""""""

First Thing First Mr. President """""" Senate Legislation S.1637 It Pays Tax Payers Money to All U.S Firms That SHip American Jobs Offshore Put Stop On It Now Could You ????????????????????????"""""""""""""""""""""""

Mr. President,if You Are Serous Immediately Repeal """"""""" Repeal ( Money Give Away For Send Jobs Offshore Senate Legislation S.1637) Give Exact the Same Money to American Firms That Create JobS Here U.S.A """"""""""""""

Let See After 2 Years Mr President Will Fix this Brocken pipe and Close this Brocken Pipe that Leaks American Jobs Offshre ???????????????????????????????????????
.I bet Mr President will not Let to Come up In the Media
.
.
.
.
.
.

Posted by: stop-outsourcers | December 14, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

yes, I agree....the Middle Class has been destroyed and it started 10 years ago.

there is no middle class....it's We, the Rich versus We, the Poor.

and that includes paycheck to paycheck poor. but hey, you have a job.

Job creation...this Act does it.
The payroll tax holiday is one of the items in the Act that looks so hopeful.
However, businesses are still afraid of what HCR will do to their expenses - so the question comes up....
HCR is looming and you might be afraid of increased health care costs, but doesn't the payroll tax holiday make it you happy enough to hire?

boy,the temp world is going to benefit tremendously. Go Temp. You might just get something and have fun at the same time. It's not a bad world, the Temp World.


Posted by: TheBabeNemo | December 14, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Another pathetic column by Ezra Klein. To portray Republican opposition in such a small column and in such a biased manner Klein had to reach the bottom of his incredibly bad "journolister" standards.

I believe what happened here is that it was Ezras turn to use Palin (hence the picture)to garner interest from the right and hatred from the left. Unfortunately Ezra got lazy and could not be bothered to do an in depth piece so close to the holidays.

The one good thing about this article is that it seems to have brought a few more lefties into the sun and out of the caves they have been hiding in since Nov 2. All the more to have some fun with before we send them scurrying back into the shadows.

Posted by: mckenna7 | December 14, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

thebabenemo wrote:

"The payroll tax holiday is one of the items in the Act that looks so hopeful.
However, businesses are still afraid of what HCR will do to their expenses - so the question comes up....
HCR is looming and you might be afraid of increased health care costs, but doesn't the payroll tax holiday make it you happy enough to hire"

Nothing you wrote makes any sense. The payroll tax is for employees, not employers, and HCR does not drive hiring decisions, though it may add to their ultimate cost.

Posted by: 54465446 | December 14, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse


disagree....more producitivity for the bottom line.
that's why it looks hopeful...

everyone wins.

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | December 14, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Sheepherder said:
Death tax should be zero. Why should I be taxed on my assets and then my survivors taxed again on them. Sorry the ahve nots can not have my assets. its unfair to farmers and ranchers like myself. Exemption up until the first 5 million. Oh thanks Republican punks for this compromise. My first 100 acres, cars, tractors and 1 barn puts me over this limit. Stupid professional left needs to relaize they will get a worse deal if this doesn't pass. No we need to do away with all farm subsidies and ethanol subsidies. We also need to insist are trading partners do the same or slam them with puntive traffis and duties. And if the WTO doesn't like it tell them to pound sand.

We need to move to flat tax with a small VAT. Oops can't have that it will put too many tax lawyer scum and accoutnats out of business.

I earned my money the old fashion way I worked for it. Folks who dont own property and don't pay Federal income taxes ie they
dont get more back in credits etc must not be allowed to vote. Only those folks who contribute to tax base and own proeprty should be allowed to vote. and please Comrade barry send palin and Beck into rendition somewhere far far away.

Sheepherder: First, I am glad you are posting here because few here are farmers. Couldn't disagree with you more. Taxing unearned income, such as inheritance, is very important to our democracy, capitalism and our culture of hard work. I encourage you to experience the entire lazy, useless aristrocratic class in European countries who didn't tax inheritance. Nothing breeds corruption of the culture and individuals than unearned income--which is inheritance. YOu win the lottery, you pay. Daddy or grandma dies and leaves you over a million, same as the lottery, you pay. You earn and contribute, you no pay. We have the lowest tax rates of the industrialized world--look out Ireland where the almost non-existant corporate tax rate attracted corporations, who hired and laid off when it suited them, diverted profits out of the country, and tax revenue never paid the country back for what they spent on providing the companies the resources (human and otherwise) they consumed in exchange for almost nothing. Bankrupted the country. Really, what I wish for you and your family is to know the imporance of self-governance and paying your taxes. Less sitting around on your butt waiting for your tax cut and daddy's inheritance check to arrive and more education, invention, improvement. A better way to get rich is to actually earn it.

Posted by: communique101 | December 14, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

thebabenemo:

What bottom line, it's not an employer expense?

Posted by: 54465446 | December 14, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

interactingdc wrote: "So much for all the blabber about "the American people. It's all about ousting Obama and saving the Republican establishment. Naysayers as usual. And this is only December. We have a bad two years ahead."
-----------------------------------------
And the past two years have been a sunny day in the park. Not.

The GOP is not trying to save the Republican Establishment... they are trying to save the country. If they have to wrest it from the greedy, clutching self-immolating fists of Obama, Democrats, Liberals, and their sycophantic media, then so be it.

Posted by: bryanmcoleman | December 14, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

I'm against the bill as it stands, but the GOP is being idiotic. The GOP is against the bill, because it might benefit Obama? It's not whether it might benefit the economy or the public, but whether it might benefit Obama?

Posted by: shhhhh | December 14, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if it would really be all that big a deal if the tax cuts lapsed. The only thing in this deal I think we should care about is the unemployment benefits.

Posted by: lonquest | December 14, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

If Mitt Romney is in favor of the tax cuts, you know it's a bad deal for Obama.

Posted by: AxelDC | December 14, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

If the tax bill does not pass, we will have the LARGEST TAX INCREASE IN THE HISTORY of the USA. This will hurt the MIDDLE CLASS and LOWER CLASS the most. Obama can not afford to have this TAX INCREASE on his record. It will ruin the little economy we have left.

Next month the new congress will extend the tax cuts. Obama will have to sign because he can not allow the LARGEST TAX INCREASE IN HISTORY. The republicans will have a majority, so they will not have to compromise. The republicans will NOT extend unemployment benefits.

If the progressive/liberal/marxists continue to dither, they all and Obama will lost in 2012. The dems in congress are too self-serving to see how blind they are.

Posted by: annnort | December 14, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

This time you're flat wrong.

The tax bill will be passed for obvious (contrary) reasons.

Senate super margin of support tells you that there is more upside to this bipartisan deal than the media has been able to focus on - for whatever reasons.

Posted by: hariknaidu | December 14, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Ezra, the public has already turned on the Democrats. It took place November 2.

So what do they have to lose now? Their majority gone, if House Democrats decide to do what is right for the country and hike taxes on the wealthiest two percent of Americans in order to narrow the deficit and strengthen programs such as Social Security and Medicare, what more can the public do to them?

On the other hand, extending the Bush tax cuts (and believe me, it's lose-lose for the Democrats: if the economy does well for two years, George W. Bush's tax cuts will get the credit, if it tanks it will be Obama who gets the blame) will cause our chronic deficits to get worse and make it harder to raise taxes in the future.

Posted by: sthomas1957 | December 14, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

All of you on here will benefit if the tax INCREASE DOES NOT TAKE PLACE ON JAN.1. Even those of you who pay NO taxes, but get TAX CREDITS paid by the IRS. There will be NO OR MUCH LESS TAX CREDITS on Jan 1 if this tax INCREASE takes place. The ones who will hurt the most if the bill does are pass are the MIDDLE CLASS and the LOWER CLASS.

Lingering-lead said it well when he called most of the poster on here "simple minds." You post, but you have no idea what you are talking about. The journolists at WaPo tell half-truths and lies. Only Will and Krauthammer tell the whole truth and you choose not to believe them. Woe is you!!

To the poster who asks how the republicans will get things through the senate after this year. The republicans added 6, I believe, to the senate and many senators see the writing on the wall after the Nov 2 election so many dem senators will be voting with the republicans. Obama is finally getting the message, so he will not be so fast with the veto. Obama is trying to move to the center to save his 2012 bid for election. I hope it does not work, but he is trying.

Posted by: annnort | December 14, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Krauthammer is Israeli. His opinion should not be considered seriously as a result. Let's see what he says if foreign aid to Israel is part of deficit reduction.

Posted by: periculum | December 14, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

What we are hearing and reading is theatrics, pandering to the base. The really crooked stuff is going on behind closed doors. My bet: "Just say NO!" carries the day, the government grinds to a halt, the economy spirals down -- all just what the R's want. Then it will be interesting. Meanwhile, real suffering occurs while the R's party. They could not care less. Their elections were bought and paid for.

Posted by: frodot | December 14, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

just heard that it's going to take another day in Senate....

losin' time and fast.....

does anyone know if Friday is the beginning of the recess....and if the return is Jan 6th.
I am hearing conflicting stories on the recess.

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | December 14, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

annort:

So explain your position, because it's always good to hear both sides. Yes of course there is no stimulus in this package. But what specifically is your estimate of the harm?

Posted by: 54465446 | December 14, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Of course it will pass. As long as they get a few nickels in their pocket, EVERYBODY is willing to love a deficit.

The fact that the U.S.A. will be a province of China in 75 years because of the deficit doesn't seem to bother anyone. Guess I can live with it too, as long as I don't have to eat those squishy things that nobody can name.

Posted by: dyinglikeflies | December 15, 2010 7:07 AM | Report abuse

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