Letters to the editor


Tax policy numbers don’t lie

Though both candidates have claimed roles as champions of the middle class in the recent presidential debates, I thought we better look at the facts hidden in both parties’ tax policy plans.

The Democratic plan extends all the current income tax rates except for the top individual rate. In other words, this plan allows the income tax rates to return to what they were under the Clinton Administration. In addition, it extends all the tax provisions of the 2009 stimulus. The Democratic plan would ensure that the bottom 90 percent of Americans will see no increase in taxes in this tough economy.

The Republican plan extends all current income tax rates, including the cuts for the highest income earners left over from the Bush Administration. Second, and most importantly, it lets certain low-income provisions of the 2009 Stimulus expire.

Under the Republican proposal, every change, or decrease, in after-tax income applies to the bottom 95 percent of income earners. Hardest hit are the bottom 20 percent of income earners, who will see an average decrease in after-tax income of 1.5 percent ($194). In contrast, the top 1 percent and 0.1 percent are the only income groups who see absolutely no tax increase.

Both our political parties adamantly claim to be fighting for the middle class, but the numbers indicate that only one is. The Democratic plan defends the tax provisions aimed at middle and lower income earners. In this respect, President Barack Obama is correct when he argues that middle class Americans’ checkbooks  are being held hostage until the top 1 percent sees their tax cuts extended. Republicans can continue to portray themselves as the protectors of the middle class (I certainly expect they will) -— however, the beautiful thing about numbers, as opposed to our current representatives, is that they do not lie.

Alex Blow

Junior, international relations

Messaging Director, USC Trojans for Obama

 

Romney’s tax policy is best for Americans

Many questions have been raised about the next four years, but very few answers have been given.

One fundamental issue we must address in this election is the proportionality of the tax burden: If there are those among us who, by virtue of their success and entrepreneurship, must pay more. As Shakespeare said, “One may smile and smile, and be a villain.” So Mr. President has told us about Obama’s America: where the price of hard work and the enjoyment of the fruits of your labor are higher taxes and stringent regulations in order to finance the idealist vision of state-run enterprises. Research by GQ and my own obtained from President Barack Obama’s campaign website have indicated that welfare payments from the federal government have ballooned in the last four years.

On the other hand, there is another candidate who knows full well that Obama’s America is not the America we know. It is not the America our parents knew; it is not the America we really believe in. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney will not single out a class of citizens for their perseverance, nor the middle class with the Alternative Minimum Tax, as Obama has done for the past four years. From the last three debates, we have seen that a vote for Romney is the vote for a fair budget, fair taxes, an investment in the protection of Syria (bayonets included), our partnership with Israel and a better economy.

John Merritt

Freshman, history

Member, USC College Republicans


  • Johnny

    Joe, it seems like you have been reading solely within the Republican noise machine and have been taken in by their spin. Here are a few errors (I don’t blame you; they are pushed and pushed on people like you):
    a) Only 3% of small business file as individuals and make over $250,000 a year. So it won’t really affect small businesses but would help to close the deficit.
    b) If you raise taxes you are not necessarily ‘killing jobs’. Corporate profits are at an all-time high under Obama but what we have is a demand problem. We need to get money into the hands of working families so that they can pay down debts and starting buying things again. That might mean raising revenue elsewhere and the very wealthy tend to save more than they spend, so it would help growth and jobs to raise revenue there and allow middle class families to spend more. Extend the Bush tax cuts for the middle class and end them for the wealthy.
    c) Cutting Obamacare would make our healthcare inflation worse and therefore would harm the deficit
    d) Cutting foodstamps? Do you want people to starve to death?
    e) The poor are not ‘losers’. A mark of a civilized society is how a country tries to bring people out of poverty. We could be doing a lot more. The US has the worst social mobility in the OECD. The American Dream is dying. And the GOP’s policies, as enacted under Bush and possibly under President Romney, are aimed squarely at making a bad problem much, much worse.

  • Joe Doakes

    And for the record, the Democrat party is NOT fighting for the middle class; they are fighting for the LOW class and impoverished. The whole facade is fairly evident when they fight tooth and nail for more welfare, food stamps, and programs for the poor. Earth to America: Democrats care ONLY about the losers in society.

  • Joe Doakes

    What these “experts” on tax policy do not understand is that small businesses, which employ over 60% of the American workforce, file taxes as income tax, which leaves them as the top percent of earners. If you raise taxes, you are killing jobs and effectively undermining the already anemic recovery that our country is attempting to jumpstart. Taxes are ALREADY high enough on high-income earners; you want a 75% marginal tax rate on the wealthy, GO TO FRANCE. Instead of taking money rightfully earned by hardworking Americans, how about we cut Obama phones, Obamacare, and food stamps. Its high time the taxpayers took back this country from the parasites.

    • Gary

      Hmmm. Ignorance certainly is bliss, but only when it is complete.
      Take a look at the last time the Middle Class was truly doing well in this country. It was during the Eisenhower Administration. He has been the only politician to understand that the best way to make this country successful is to encourage growth here at home by growing a larger, stronger Middle Class. Take a good look at how he did that. (Clue: look at percentage of taxation on the wealthy, as well as on the Middle Class.) Honestly. Check it out. I think you will be surprised on a number of fronts.
      Also, I would love to see you get some real education and knowledge about what is really going on out there. Read up on the Bilderberg Group, and check out the Tri-Lateral Commission’s own web site. If it does not wake your fascist, elitist mind up, then you truly are the complete person, and blissful to boot. Good luck!

      • Joe Doakes

        Fascist? Elitist? It seems your own ignorance is only exceeded by your presumptuousness. Take a good look back at the ’50s and you’ll notice that, though the tax rates were high on the books, nearly everyone was able to deduct such a significant portion of their income that effective tax rates never hovered above 20%. And far from your ignorant notions that free market capitalism = fascism, I believe that everyone is entitled to the fruit of their own labor and stand in the way of your government-mandated (fascist) redistribution of my hard-earned money. Get a job. Get a life. Because you’re not taking the fruits of mine

  • Johnny

    I can only surmise that the second letter is performance art designed to satirize the sorry state of GOP ‘thinking’. GQ? lol.