Obama says he's open to all new ideas, but will reject any approach which is not "balanced".
I think it would be really nice if he chose to explain exactly what balanced means to him.
Based on the raw, irrefutable hard numbers available from the Congressional Budget office, the numbers are already quite unbalanced, but not the way the Democratic party propaganda machine would have you believe. The most current available figures from the CBO is from 2009. (considering all this data must exist in an electronic format, you'd think it would be easy to compile and produce more current numbers than that, but the wheels of Government turn more slowly than the private sector).
Linky for all the numbers below: http://www.cbo.gov/publication/43373
The top 20% (in terms of income) represented 50.8% of before-tax income. They paid 67.9% of all federal income taxes collected.
Conversely, the bottom 20% represented 5.1% of before-tax income, yet paid 0.3 % of all federal income taxes collected.
How can you possibly slice these numbers in a way that produces a conclusion that the wealthy are paying less than their fair share?
If you based it on percentages, you could say that the top 20% might be responsible for 20% of the tax burden. They currently pay more than triple that. If you base it on income, you could say the group which enjoys the 50% of all money earned might be responsible for 50% of all taxes collected. They currently pay far more than that as well.
Due to the crappy economy, people are making less $ than before. But, the loss there is not proportional either. From 2007-2009, average declines in before-tax income were 5 percent or less for households in each of the four lowest income quintiles and 18 percent for households in the top quintile. For households in the top one percent, income fell by 36 percent.
And yet, as the top 20% saw their incomes drop more than any other group (at least 3times more, in fact), they think that now is a good time to crank up the rates and make them pay even more.
OK, how exactly is that balanced ?
Full disclosure: I am not in the top quintile, although I am diligently working towards it, so the proposed changes at the top end dont affect me. However, not being shortsighted, I do realize that the people who own my company do fall into it, and flipping them the proverbial fiscal bird like this is not what I would prefer to see happen in the interest of keeping my job, especially when it is easier for them than ever before to ship things overseas.