Tag Archives: Ronald Reagan
The conservatives of today live in a fantasy world, claiming to be Christian while genuflecting before icons of their chosen Messiah, Ronald Wilson Reagan; all have this vision of the Gipper with his tax cutting sword Excalibur flying through the halls of Congress slashing taxes and blessing the land with myriad tax cuts – reality check, while Reagan cut taxes his first year in office, it soon became clear his doctrine of supply side, trickledown economics was voodoo and that it wasn’t working, hence, for almost every year thereafter he raised one tax or another. It wasn’t the tax cuts that fed the government coffers, and fueled the start of economic recovery, it was the tax increases.
One such tax increase was in 1986, when on the south lawn of the White House under a beautiful sunny fall morning, Cabinet members, leading lawmakers and a large crowd applauded as they witnessed President Reagan sign into law the Tax Reform Act.
In order to get to this momentous bill signing, the President had to go to Capitol Hill to knock more than a few fellow Republicans heads together; all members of the House who had earlier blocked the measure – sound familiar?
“I think all of us here today know what a herculean effort it took to get this landmark bill to my desk,” Reagan said to the assembled crowd.
The Tax Reform Act of 1986 took the largest share of the country’s tax burden off the shoulders of the “really poor” whom Willard Mittens Romney “doesn’t worry about” and the middle class and placed it squarely on the corporations; it exempted millions of households of the “really poor” from any federal income taxes. Reagan called it “a sweeping victory for fairness” where “vanishing loopholes and a minimum tax will mean that everybody and every corporation pay their fair share.” The act was designed to be tax revenue neutral, because individual taxes were decreased while $30 billion annually in loopholes were eliminated and corporate taxes were increased
According to National Public Radio (NPR) it took more than two years to produce that tax code overhaul, and during that time, President Reagan went on the road to plead his case for the plan. At a high school in Atlanta, Ga., in 1985, Reagan said they were going to “close the unproductive loopholes that allow some of the truly wealthy to avoid paying their fair share.”
In Congress, Democrats and Republicans worked together to merge competing proposals for tax reform, and some like Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont says it was a different era.
“We had a lot of grownups in both parties, people who actually wanted the government to work,” Leahy says.
Yes you did Senator; you had what the current crop of Republican Tea Party (GOTP) members’ lack, maturity. The GOTP thinks it’s slick in portraying the uber-rich as the victims of the tax code; a code which allows a multi-millionaire to hide his money in the Caymans and in Swiss bank accounts and pay a mere 13% in taxes. The GOTP needs to read its own history, and see what its hero saw, that the rich don’t suffer under some stifling tax burden, that the economy isn’t struggling because the rich pay too much, but because they pay too little while everyone else carries the load. Reagan’s signature leveled the playing field while George W. Bush made it catawampus, tilting wildly in favor of those who didn’t need help. Reality check, Willard Mittens Romney, and his class – the deified 1% aren’t paying its fair share, they’re paying nowhere close to it and Mitten’s current tax proposal will decrease the current tax levels on his group to zero while raising taxes 60% on the middle class and poor. I had the very great privilege to work for and to know Ronald Reagan, and Mittens is no Ronald Reagan.
On 6 Jan 1983, the great tax cutter President Ronald Reagan signed into law a five cent per gallon federal gas tax hike; that’s right, Ronald Wilson Reagan signed into law a five cent per gallon tax increase. The reason for the new tax hike? He was going to stimulate the economy!
Wow, the great white father of Republican mythology raised yet another tax; where does it all end Timmy?
It’s time for the far right-wing worshippers to come to the pool of truth, drink deeply, and admit Reagan didn’t raise revenues from trickle down, he did it by raising taxes, more than 12 times during his eight years in office, including raising the federal gas tax. Can you imagine how apoplectic the right would go if President Obama merely suggested a five cent gasoline tax? They’d be beside themselves screaming it was a socialistic plot to take over the petroleum industry.
Facts are stubborn things, and facts are Reagan cut taxes his first year in office, and when he failed to turn the economy around he then raised taxes non-stop his remaining years in the White House. Facts are stubborn things.
If Republican Tea Party (GOTP) presidential – most unlikely to win – candidate Michele “Krazy” Bachmann could add new faces to Mount Rushmore, of all the 39 additional presidents (yes, that’s the correct number, Cleveland served two non-consecutive terms and is counted twice), who would she choose? Well, she said she’d add Ronald Reagan, James Garfield and Calvin Coolidge.
When asked who she would add to the South Dakota monument, she proposed Reagan, which is certainly someone who could be considered, but certainly not before FDR. She then mentioned James Garfield, who was president for just over seven months before being assassinated. She reportedly said she chose him because he is the only person to become president from the House of Representatives, which isn’t exactly the criteria normally used when choosing those who would have their faces enshrined as our “greatest presidents”. That’s it? He came up from Congress? Personally, having come up from the Congress should be an automatic disqualifier from any President’s mug being considered for inclusion on Rushmore.
After saying she’d put Garfield’s face on the Mount, Krazy then said her next choice would be Calvin Coolidge. Why Coolidge? Well, Bachmann says he’s an ideal choice since he “got the country’s budget back on track.”
Say what? The only reason Wacko would choose him is because he’s an icon of the Tea Party, and he was a Republican. Coolidge embodies everything the GOTP would love to go back to, basically zero government intrusion into anything. Thank the Lord she’ll never be president.
Now for something completely off topic, when asked who she’d choose to play her in a movie and what her theme song was, Bachmann answered Patricia Heaton and “Taking Care of Business.” Well, Heaton would be a good choice, we already know she’s good at situation comedy, but the theme song is clearly wrong, it would have to be a tossup between Patsy Cline’s “Crazy” and “The Merry-go-Round Broke Down”.
Fortunately, the country is never going to face a Bachmann presidency, and it’s doubtful anyone will make a movie of her life; after all, ABC doesn’t do “After School Specials” anymore.
Of course Republican Tea Party (GOTP) hopeful Michelle “Krazy” Bachmann would declare on FOX PAC that she wants to adopt the Reagan tax plan, it’s where every desperate conservative candidate hoping to regain ground goes; apparently however, she doesn’t understand that would mean a rather hefty tax increase to put the tax rate where it was under the Gipper.
Krazy has been very scornful of Herman “Pizza Man” Cain’s “9-9-9” tax plan, especially of the idea of a national sales tax.
“For my tax plan, I take a page out of one of my great economists that I admire, Ronald Reagan,” Bachmann said. “And under my tax plan I want to adopt the Reagan tax plan. It brought the economic miracle of the 1980s. Why not go with what works? I want to reinstitute the Reagan tax model from the 1980s.”
Excuse me? Krazy is of course a dyed in the wool conservative who has selective memory regarding the Reagan “economic miracle” and what caused it. While it’s true Reagan cut taxes in his first year, he subsequently raised them, including some of the highest tax increases by any U.S. President during peace time (https://thelibertytree.wordpress.com/2011/07/19/reagan-was-not-a-tax-cutter-he-was-a-tax-raiser/ ).
Reagan’s “tax cuts” led to an increased tax burden on all Americans, and an exploded deficit and national debt – the “golden era” of Reaganomics actually lasted less than a year when it was realized it wouldn’t create the revenue the administration had predicted, but conservatives will never admit this, and will go gaga over any politician who proclaims they’re the next Reagan; well Ms. Bachmann, I knew Ronald Reagan, and you’re no Ronald Reagan, you’re not even a Michael Reagan.
Isn’t it interesting that the same Arthur (aka Art) Laffer, the former Reagan economic underling, who is now making a splash on FOX PAC interviews crying “TAX CUTS FOR ALL, TAX CUTS FOR ALL!” wrote in June 2004 – for the Heritage Foundation no less – that as a result of the Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981 (ERTA) and other tax acts (meaning increases) in the 1980s, the top 10% were paying 57.2% of total income taxes by 1988 – up from 48% in 1981 … Why, that looks like a tax increase on the top tax bracket under Ronald Reagan, creating more tax revenue and stimulating the economy … and wow, President Obama has proposed increasing taxes on the top echelon of earners just like Reagan did to create more tax revenue and to help stimulate the economy, and yes Virginia, that would mean not only that there is a Santa Clause, but that the rich would be paying a higher percentage of total income taxes.
Additionally, a report from the Joint Economic Committee in 1996 found that the bottom 50% of earners share dropped from 7.5% to 5.7% from 1981 to 1988, and that the total share of taxes on middle income earners in the 50th to 95th percentile decreased from 57.5% to 48.7% between 1981 and 1988 … now that’s just amazing, the President’s jobs bill would reduce payroll taxes on both workers and employers, extend long-term unemployment benefits and invest in public works and teachers, police officers and other public servants – in effect reducing the tax burden of the lower and middle class, gee, just like Reagan did.
So, just to recap, from 1981 to 1988 we see an increase on taxes during Reagan’s presidency on the upper percent of earners (the top 5% to be exact) aka the fabulously wealthy so-called job creators, while at the same time tax rates were cut for the middle class and lower income classes and the economy grew right along with tax revenues helping the country out of a devastating economy … curse those darned facts!
CBS News is reporting that President Obama has said that former President Ronald Reagan would have supported his plan to raise taxes on Americans who make more than $1 million per year, known as the “Buffett rule,” and to back up his statement he quoted the Gipper from a 1985 statement saying, “Some of those loopholes were understandable, but in practice they sometimes made it possible for millionaires to pay nothing, while a bus driver was paying 10 percent of his salary, and that’s crazy. It’s time we stopped it.”
And, oh surprise, just as the President Obama noted, Republicans never accused Reagan of being a “socialist” for wanting a bus driver to pay lower tax rates than a millionaire.
The President also mocked Republican Tea Party (GOTP) claims that his effort to pass the Buffett Rule — which would establish a minimum tax rate for those making more than $1 million per year in order to ensure they pay as much in taxes as lower-income individuals — amounted to “class warfare.”
“I know a lot of folks have short memories, but I don’t remember Republicans accusing Ronald Reagan of being a socialist or engaging in class warfare because he thought everybody should do their fair share. Things have just gotten out of whack,” he said.
Isn’t it amazing how it’s not class warfare when we lower the tax brackets for the wealthiest 2% while advocating cuts to the poor and needy?
The President quoted Reagan once again during remarks at Eastfield College later in the day in which he called on Republicans to pass his $447 billion jobs bill, which he sent to Congress last month. He noted in that speech that Republican House majority leader Eric Cantor has vowed not to let the jobs bill come up for a vote.
“Well I’d like Mr. Cantor to come down here to Dallas and explain what exactly in this jobs bill does he not believe in,” he said. “…Does he not believe in rebuilding America’s roads and bridges? Does he not believe in tax breaks for small businesses, or efforts to help our veterans?”
He went on to urge Cantor to “put this jobs bill up for a vote so that the entire country knows exactly where every Member of Congress stands.”
“Do your job, Congress!” he added.
Cantor spokesman Brad Dayspring responded to the comments by saying that “President Obama needs to understand that his ‘my way or the highway’ approach simply isn’t going to work in the House or the Democratic Senate, especially in light of his abysmal record on jobs.”
Ah yes, of course, the “my way or highway” tactic is the expressed copyrighted property of the GOTP House and the President isn’t allowed to use it. Well Brad, he just did, and the GOTP is going to have to put up or shut up. Vote it down and stand by it if you think it’s that bad of a bill; oh, and if I were a spokesman for a GOTP member of Congress right now, mentioning abysmal job performance is probably not the way to go, especially when you schmucks ran on the promise of creating jobs in 2010.
GOTP Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has reportedly called for an immediate vote on the bill in an effort to show it doesn’t have the unified support of Democrats, but Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid objected to bringing up the proposal, offering Republicans the chance to formally move to a debate on the bill; they declined the offer.
Well sure they declined the offer; they don’t want to go on record for actually opposing the creation of jobs.
The President’s bill would reduce payroll taxes on both workers and employers, extend long-term unemployment benefits and invest in public works and teachers, police officers and other public servants. It would be paid for through the tax increase on high earners and the closing of some corporate tax loopholes.
And what’s to argue here? Ah yes, I forgot, Darth McConnell has sworn an oath to the Dark Lord to make sure President Obama only has one term, and Cantor is a frightened little rabbit who likes to make a loud noise from his hutch but lacks the courage of his convictions to go on the record voting against it. Guess what boys? You’re already on the record opposing jobs, and it will come back to bite you in the butt come November 2012.