Most punditry regarding the federal budget standoff misses one fundamental fact

Kevin Drum VENTS HIS FRUSTRATION: Is there something about budget showdowns that gradually but relentlessly lowers the collective IQ of Beltway pundits? Examples abound. For example, we’ve recently seen a whole spate of folks pretending that all our problems could be solved if only President Obama somehow just unleashed his presidential superpowers and made Congress pass a reasonable long-term deficit plan. Jessica Yellin gave us the nutshell version of this last week when she asked Obama, “Couldn’t you just have them down...

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Even the nation’s top business leaders are siding with Obama on tax hikes and debt-ceiling issue

Appropriately enough, the Wall Street Journal tells us about THIS COUNTERINTUITIVE DEVELOPMENT: The Business Roundtable, a group of the nation’s top CEOs, Tuesday urged lawmakers to consider raising taxes to avert the fiscal cliff, a shift for business leaders who had previously said they wanted all tax cuts extended for one year. “We urge you to step forward and demonstrate that principled compromise is once again possible and that the American political system that underpinned the economic success of our nation and others can function as...

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Surprise! Most Americans paying far less in taxes than they would have 30 years ago!

Believe it or not, the overall tax bite on Americans is less now than it was in 1980. That’s the good news. The bad news is that rich folks have enjoyed bigger declines in tax burdens than the rest of us. The story is HERE: [M]ost Americans in 2010 paid far less in total taxes — federal, state and local — than they would have paid 30 years ago. According to an analysis by The New York Times, the combination of all income taxes, sales taxes and property taxes took a smaller share of their income than it took from households with the same...

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Do tax breaks for the rich improve the economy and create jobs? A nonpartisan study says no!

Republican lawmakers don’t want you to hear about THIS: The New York Times reported on Thursday that Senate Republicans applied pressure to the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS) in September, successfully persuading it to withdraw a report finding that lowering marginal tax rates for the wealthiest Americans had no effect on economic growth or job creation. “The pressure applied to the research service comes amid a broader Republican effort to raise questions about research and statistics that were once trusted as...

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How fast can you move your computer mouse?

I’m afraid you can’t move your computer mouse fast enough to deal with THIS.

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