The Bush tax cuts are due to expire on 12/31/2010. Democratic leadership, i.e., Obama, Pelosi, Reid, etc., seem very content to let the cuts expire. If Congress does not act to renew them, here's what will happen:
Personal income tax rates will increase by 10% across-the-board.
The capital gains tax will increase by one-third and the dividend rate will almost triple.
The “death” tax rears its ugly head again, jumping for 0% to a whopping 55%.
The marriage tax penalty returns.
The child tax credit is cut from $1,000 to $500 per child.
Small businesses and investors are especially targeted, meaning likely higher unemployment, lower incomes, and stagnant economic growth.
If liberal Democrats in Congress simply do nothing, their refusal to act will result in the largest tax hike in American history. It could well be fatal for struggling economy.
There are several petitions extant, most prominently one being assembled by the League of American Voters, demanding that Congress not allow this to happen. This issue should also be a prominent one in the upcoming elections, i.e., what is each candidate's position on the expiration of the tax cuts? If they are not willing to commit to making the cuts permanent, they do not deserve our votes.
Liberal media commentators have already been particularly virulent in their criticism of those who would make the cuts permanent, using such extreme and misplaced words as "traitor to America" and similar phrases, some of which border on the obscene. It is particularly ironic that so many of these commentators have multi-million dollar incomes, as recently revealed in TV Guide magazine (Conservatives left in this list to provide perspective):
Matt Lauer (Today) $16 million +
Katie Couric (CBS) $15 million
Brian Williams (NBC) $12.5 million
Diane Sawyer (ABC) $12 million
Meredith Vieira (Today) $11 million
Bill O'Reilly (Fox News) $10 million
George Stephanopoulos (ABC) $8 million
Keith Olbermann (MSNBC) $7 million
Shepard Smith (Fox News) $7 million
Wolf Blitzer (CNN) $3 million
Christiane Amanpour (ABC) $2 million
Lawrence O'Donnell (MSNBC) $2 million
Eliot Spitzer (CNN) $500,000
On the other hand, if one is being paid millions for some of the garbage being spewed by liberal commentators on television, maybe they're too dense to understand they're shooting themselves in the foot. For example, I almost lost my dinner when I read that Keith Olbermann, who was worthless when he was doing sports on ESPN, is being paid $7 million to scream invective nightly on MSNBC. There is no justice.
But I digress. Friends, this tax situation, if not made permanent, will reach into every pocket in America. Most of this country has struggled mightily over the past two years, and a broad tax hike will push many over the brink. That the Obama Administration and the Reid/Pelosi Congressional leadership shows no interest in even extending, much less making permanent the tax cuts, reveals quite clearly that they do not care about the survival or prosperity of the American people. Rather, it is all about a longstanding agenda they intend to ram through regardless of the consequences.
Only the American people have the power to stop this abomination.