During the fall campaign, my commenters were full the usual "hold on to your wallets!" anti-liberal fear-mongering. They just couldn't believe Barack Hussein Obama meant what he said when he laid out his plan to cut taxes for darn near everybody. And I'll admit, as the economy went in the tank, I had my doubts about any tax-cut promises: I figured that whoever won the election would have to raise taxes to pay the bills.
But here they come: tax breaks from the Obama administration, to the tune of perhaps 300 billion dollars. (No word yet on how much is earmarked for Joe the Plumber.) The President-Elect is pressing for 40% of whatever stimulus package comes out of Congress to take the form of tax cuts. Already the plan makes a little more sense than last year's stimulus checks: the plan in the works now would simply change withholding rules to leave more money in your paycheck in the first place, rather than firing up the computers in Washington to print and mail rebate checks back to all of us. Spreading the stimulus out in smaller payments over several paychecks will also encourage a slower but more sustained increase in consumer spending.
Your debate over the merits of tax cuts and deficit spending is welcome. I'm still uneasy about all of our grandkids' money that we're spending. Paul Krugman thinks 40% is too high and wants the balance tipped even further toward spending on infrastructure and other public goods.
But don't forget that, gosh darn it, we have a President-Elect keeping a campaign promise. Go figure.
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