Since Obama's Gonna Be Talking
About It Non-Stop For The Next
6 Months, Exactly How Much
Would His Proposed 'Buffett Rule'
Lower The Deficit?
The national debt and the deficit? No problem! I've got my
awesome new 'Buffett Rule' right here, champ!
You may have heard the Buffett Rule being mentioned the past few weeks, what with Obama not being able to shut up about it. Apparently this is going to be his Big Idea on handling the deficit during his push for re-election. So let's deal with it.
What is the Buffett Rule?
The Buffett Rule is a tax plan proposed by President Barack Obama in 2011 to alleviate income inequality in the United States between the top 1% of Americans and the remaining 99% of Americans, due to the income growth in the 1% group as compared to the 99% group.
The tax plan would apply to individuals earning more than $1 million per year; this comprised the top 450,000 of Americans by income when the rule was proposed.
The plan is named after American investor Warren Buffett, who publicly stated in early 2011 that he disagreed with the rich paying less in federal taxes, as a portion of income, than the middle class, and has voiced support for increased taxes on the wealthy. It would implement a higher minimum tax rate for taxpayers in the highest income bracket, to ensure that they do not pay a lower percentage of income in taxes than less-affluent Americans. In October 2011, Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid proposed a 5.6 percent surtax on millionaires to pay for new stimulus provisions, but the change did not go through.
A White House statement released in January 2012 defined the rule as part of "measures to ensure everyone making over a million dollars a year pays a minimum effective tax rate of at least 30%... implemented in a way that is equitable, including not disadvantaging individuals who make large charitable contributions." The whitehouse.gov website has it stated as "No household making more than $1 million each year should pay a smaller share of their income in taxes than a middle class family pays." The rule is not in the President's 2013 budget proposal and has been stressed by the White House as a guideline rather than a legislative initiative.
A majority of Americans, according to a CBS News/New York Times poll released in January 2012, support the change.Here's how Obama For America defines it:
Obama For America
Middle-class families shouldn't have to pay a higher tax rate than millionaires and billionaires.
So President Obama has proposed the "Buffett Rule," which would require the wealthiest Americans to pay a tax rate at least as high as the middle class. Republicans are already calling this "class warfare," and they will fight this plan with everything they have.
But it's just common sense. Tell the President you've got his back on this one.That's a pretty damn good use of what I call 'fairness language'. Note how they totally avoid telling anybody how much actual new revenue the tax rate on those wealthiest Americans would raise. They don't need to let anybody know that because it's all about 'fairness'.
But note in the two examples of defining the Buffett Rule mentioned above, not one thing is said about using it to reduce the deficit. Instead, it's being sold as a way to bring 'fairness' between the incomes of the richest 1% and the other 99% of Americans.
Polls don't show Americans that concerned about the supposed pressing problem of 'income inequality' in America. What they concerned about is the massive amounts of new spending and the staggering amount of new debt being piled up by Washington.
So people are about to spend the next 6 months trying to sell the Buffett rule not only as being a way to bring 'fairness' to tax rates between the rich and the rest of us here in America; they are also going to try to sell it as deficit reduction bill.
So let's ask: has anybody crunched the numbers and found exactly how much the new Buffett Rule would reduce our deficit?
The answer is........YES!
Thanks to the guys at Political Math Blog, we know exactly how much this awesome new Buffett Rule would reduce the deficit!
So for the next six months as you see President Hope 'N Change relentlessly shill for this stupid Buffett Rule, keep in mind what he's really doing:
He fomenting class warfare to whip up his base while he does essentially nothing to deal with the fact this country is sliding towards the financial abyss because Washington won't reign in it's insane spending levels and it's enormous debt.
So every single time he brings up the Buffett rule when the deficit is being mentioned until this November, put up this graph with the hashtag #fiddlingwhileRomeburns
Because that's exactly what he's doing. He's wasting our time and doing nothing while the problem gets worse. Nobody should reward him with a second term when he wouldn't deal with this crisis in his first one.