Congratulations on your victory. In the interest of full disclosure, I did not vote for you, but nonetheless admired the amount of support, not to mention funding, that you were able to generate in a relatively short amount of time.
Unfortunately, now comes the hard part. And I don't mean hiring a monitor full-time to continually pry our vice president-elect's foot out of his mouth, although that would appear to be one job in a shaky economy with a modicum of security. No, I mean actually executing what may have sounded quite presidential when surrounded by rabid supporters - not to mention Baroque columns - specifically, your economic policies on taxes and health care.
There's been an undeniable undercurrent of class warfare in your platform and whistle stops, not to mention a near obsession with tossing around the noun "fairness." Someone forgot to mention that fairness is not endemic to capitalism.
But on to specifics.
Last month your World-Series-delaying infomercial sort of drew a line in the sand between those voters in danger of losing their jobs and those you perceive as wealthy enough to take care of them.
The rich by your definition are those making $200,000 a year (I would have sworn it was $250,000 not all that long ago, but in the interest of expediency let's move on).
Under your plan, 95 percent of American workers would receive a tax cut. Again, amidst a backdrop of columns and pomp, that would get any crowd whooping and hollering, but in reality, it serves as spackle for some gigantic holes.
Not mentioned is the fact that many of those folks receiving those tax cuts are ones who currently don't pay taxes anyway. So in effect, it creates a frightening incentive for many to eschew the pursuit of higher opportunities - another cycle of welfare dependency, if you will.
While those receiving a tax cut may cheer, entrepreneurs (both small and large) face a 33 percent rise in capital gains tax (that includes Joe the Plumber) and hikes in the top payroll tax rate of anywhere from 16 to 32 percent.
And let's not forget your proposed payroll tax for national health care of 7 percent.
You've also made a sweeping proposal to streamline the tax preparation system, which gives taxpayers the option of receiving from their employers pre-filed tax forms to verify, sign and return. The tax preparation industry only stands to lose roughly $2-$3 billion under that proposal. I'm sure they won't be too upset.
After all, they can probably recoup those losses by advising the higher-earning individuals under your plan, since they're sure to need advice on how to move their money offshore.
Again, Mr. President, good luck.
I'm afraid you're going to need it.
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