Fiscal Cliff 2013: Time to Let Bush Tax Cuts Expire


Neither party is correct about the fiscal cliff. It is a wraith-like concept used to make us realize how dependent we are on our elected officials. 

If the interests of the American public were at the forefront of either party’s hive-mind, the status quo would never have existed. Politics is a game of chess (or Mortal Kombat). You are constantly trying to put yourself in the best position, while simultaneously disadvantaging your opponent. When this occurs, you might be in the best position to believe you have won. But when it concerns taxes and economic consequences for the majority of America, a political victory for either side is usually a defeat for all of us.

Unless re-elected President Obama and Republicans can come to an alternative compromise, more than $500 billion in tax increases and all-inclusive spending cuts are scheduled to take effect after January 1, 2013. While Democrats and Republicans actually agree on much of what needs to be addressed, the main thing that they do not agree on is absolutely ridiculous. The Bush tax rates on income for the top 2 percent of taxpayers were a large of part of Obama’s 2008 and 2012 successful campaigns. Although the rates were set to expire in December 2010, Obama actually conceded to extending them for two years in exchange for Republican support for the payroll tax cut and extending jobless aid. Now fresh off re-election, Obama vows to change them. But the mere fact that he has to come out and say that, it is a large problem.

We love to say that we live in a capitalist society. If that were true, we would not have bailed out the banks on Wall Street nor saved the auto industry. In a true capitalist society, you either thrive or you disappear. There are no second chances. And yet, individuals from both parties have given themselves second chances numerous times because they are the faction that controls the rest of the nation.

It is perplexing to me that our elected officials on both sides wish to argue about raising the tax rate from 36 percent to 39.6 percent for the top 2 percent of our country would benefit the majority of the nation. The other 98 percent of our country was forced, not asked, to save the banks on Wall Street and perform CPR on the auto industry. Yes, it saved many jobs and it was necessary, but I would bet that the top 2 percent didn’t “feel” the change of the situation on Wall Street and the auto industry as much as the other 98 percent. We gave those who control our money a second chance and there has not been much to make sure that they will not royally screw us again. Why not give the rest of us a second chance to thrive?