Many earning over $250,000 will see NO tax increase under Pres. Obama’s tax plan

Think Progress illustrates how President Obama’s tax plan would actually effect taxpayers earning $250,000 and above:

But as a new report by The New York Times detailed yesterday, even a significant minority of those making over the $250,000 threshold would see no increase under Obama’s tax plan, and for the rest the added burden would be minor in comparison to the size of their incomes:

A close look at the president’s plan shows that a large majority of families making up to $300,000 — as well as hundreds of thousands of families with even larger incomes — would not pay taxes at a higher marginal rate. [...]

While the president has said that he wants to raise tax rates for the top 2 percent, only about 1 percent of taxpayers will face higher marginal rates, according to an analysis by the Tax Policy Center, a widely respected research group.

[...] That $1.6 trillion in revenue can be raised by applying a relatively small tax burden on a very narrowly defined set of Americans is an indication of how extreme and concentrated income inequality has become in America. It also reveals why multiple studies, the latest from the International Monetary Fund, have concluded that Obama’s preferred set of tax increases will have a negligible effect on economic growth — the income being hit is largely separate from the low and middle-income Americans who provide the bulk of the demand driving the economy.

An extra $1.6 TRILLION IN REVENUE! When will the House Republicans stop defending the greed of the elites? Common sense tells us that people who take tax deductions for dancing horses, who would rather bankrupt companies and layoff workers rather than reduce executive salaries and bonuses and share profits, and who have — for decades — redirected billions (trillions?) of dollars from the national treasury and the working and middle-class to their own personal (offshore) bank accounts can absolutely, positively, undeniably afford to pay a few extra percentage points in federal taxes.

Bill Maher on the difference between the debt ceiling and “the fiscal cliff”

I think most people have “the fiscal cliff” confused with the debt ceiling crisis. Really, they’re opposites. Not raising the debt ceiling means not paying our debts. Going off the fiscal cliff means paying off our debt by raising taxes and cutting government spending. Well-advertised is the CBO saying going off the cliff could lead to a recession next year. Less advertised is that it also says it could get us into a more sound fiscal position in the long-term.

All this fiscal cliff panic is just proof that we are all Keynesians. Everybody knows that more government spending — whether it’s in the form of tax expenditures or social services, helps the economy grow. But you have to balance that with not letting your budget get out of hand.

Since we’re looking for new revenue streams that aren’t income taxes, Obama should use this budget crisis — if you can call it that — to do something about global warming with a carbon tax. This may be his last and only chance to do something big since cap and trade didn’t work. And it would be just desserts for the oil and coal industries that went all in for Mitt Romney, a nice little personal fuck you to the Koch brothers.

— Bill Maher