Come Dec. 31, 2012, we are scheduled to go off the “fiscal cliff.” That’s a colorful term for sequestration, meaning “things that will happen that we don’t want to happen but get to blame the other side for.” These things include the expiration of the Bush tax cuts, drastic cuts in government spending both domestic and military. The biggest impasse seems to be the tax issue.
The Democrats and most people in America believe that the marginal tax rate for incomes over $250,000 should go from 35 percent to 38 percent and middle class incomes should be taxed less. The GOP doesn’t want to be seen raising taxes. The cuts in spending are secondary, if even seriously considered at all. The tax thing is the impasse.
Here is my prediction. Come Dec. 31, there will be no deal. The Bush tax cuts expire. Now a bill cutting taxes on those making less than $250,000 will be introduced. There will not be a bill cutting taxes on those making more than $250,000. This way, the taxes that should go up do go up. “Hey, that’s the law,” they’ll all say. The taxes that should go down, well, they all get to vote to lower taxes. And nobody gets blamed for the top marginal rate increasing because that was set over 10 years ago. And everybody brags that they cut taxes. Win-win!
The next two years will have the same bickering and whining about what should be cut or not and the sun will rise in the east.
This is called politics. Believe it or not, this is how it works.
PittsfieldMORE IN Letters
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: In 1900, a crew arrives at a Scottish isle lighthouse to find the previous crew has vanished; in 1944, George S. Patton relieves Bastogne; in 1890, 'Uncle Charlie' Osborne born; in 1891, Henry Miller born in New York.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Capt. James Cook discovers and names Christmas Island, Brits develop and test H-bombs there in 1957-58; 100 years ago today, Christmas truce takes hold on Western Front in France, combatants observe the holiday.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Gen. Wm. T. Sherman concludes March to the Sea, secures Savannah, Ga., offers the city as Christmas gift to Pres. Lincoln; N.Y.'s Lincoln Tunnel opens in 1937; first gorilla born in captivity, Colo, celebrates 58th birthday today.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Brent Curtis reports on the probe into a city bar fight involving police officers; Vt. Yankee has its last media day event before final shutdown next week; Depot Park hosts annual vigil to raise awareness of plight of homeless.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Vermont Gas Systems puts Phase 2 on hold as the latest estimate for Phase 1 takes a 27 percent leap upward, to a total of $157 million; U.S. Attorney Tristram Coffin quits for job with private firm; police cite man in pot bust.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: In 1972, Christmas bombing of North Vietnam ordered by President Richard Nixon, most lethal strikes of the war; in 1989, U.S. invades Panama to depose, arrest and charge Gen. Manuel Noriega with drug trafficking, racketeering.