McCain has clung to the old Republican cut-taxes-and-government-regulation mantra far too long, even as the economic ground has shifted under his feet. His sudden burst of populism on the campaign trail—complaining about "greed" on Wall Street, doesn't change the fact that his tax plan is startlingly regressive [big honkin' PDF alert]—giving only $19 a year in tax cuts to the bottom fifth of taxpayers, and $140,000 to the top 1 in 1000. For the middle class, he offers considerably less than Barack Obama--$319 to Obama's $2,136 [emphasis mine; Ruth Conniff, "Grampa and Barbie on the Economy," The Progressive, 2008.09.18].
Instead of relying on the rick Wall Street folks McCain calls greedy to make trickle-down economics work, Obama's tax plan gives more money straight back to middle-class workers. Even Fox News is willing to report that (hat tip to Stan G!):
In an interview on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” Biden said wealthier taxpayers would indeed pay more under the proposals of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama. Under his plan, people earning more than $250,000 a year would pay more in taxes while those earning less — the vast majority of American taxpayers — would receive a tax cut.
"We want to take money and put it back in the pocket of middle-class people,” Biden said. Of those who would pay more, he said: “It’s time to be patriotic … time to jump in, time to be part of the deal, time to help get America out of the rut.”
...Although McCain claims that Obama would raise taxes, the independent Tax Policy Center and other groups conclude that four out of five U.S. households would receive tax cuts under Obama’s proposals ["Biden: Wealthy Americans Must Pay More Taxes to Show Patriotism," AP via Fox News, 2008.09.18].
So take your pick: vote for McCain, who advocates more of the same, or vote for Obama, who offers actual change in policy... and in your pocketbook.
p.s.: Note that when a financial crisis turns the electorate's attention away from personalities and back to issues that matter, Obama gains in the polls.