This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on December 16, 2002 1:43 PM. The previous post in this blog was Point of clarification. The next post in this blog is Well, here's another clue for you all. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Monday, December 16, 2002

Lord help us

The next two years are going to be memorable, to say the least. Not only will we have Part 2 of our little adventure in Iraq to deal with, but we are also about to experience a major throw-down over the federal tax system. And with the GOP in charge of both the Hill and the White House, things are looking bleak indeed for the little guy (and gal).

The Washington Post is reporting today that the "new" Bush economic team is planning to shift even more of the burden of federal taxes onto low-income taxpayers. According to the story, "[t]he Treasury Department is working up more sophisticated distribution tables that are expected to make the poor appear to be paying less in taxes and the rich to be paying more."

The linchpin to the new Republican initiative: the argument that Social Security levies aren't taxes, they're insurance premiums. So when you count how heavily you're taxed, you shouldn't count FICA withholding from your paycheck, or the self-employment tax.

One would think the political fallout from this would be unacceptable to the administration, but it apparently believes that the general public is too slow to catch on or too weak to defend itself.

I hope that the Bushies are wrong, and that two years from now the proponents of this nonsense pay dearly at the polls. What's really needed are some Democratic candidates who can make the case against them in a convincing and charismatic way. But who's that? Kerry? Ted? Hillary? Al Sharpton?

Here in Oregon, a parallel movement is underfoot, with the so-called "business leaders" revving up yet another pitch for a sales tax.

Little guys (and gals), hold onto your wallets.

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