Republicans demand higher taxes. No, really!

Republicans want to raise your taxes. Republicans want to raise your taxes. Republicans want to raise your taxes.

Tell your family and friends - especially the conservatives you know - because it's true.

As part of last December's deal that extended the Bush tax cuts by two years, employees' share of the payroll tax was temporarily decreased from 6.2% to 4.2% for 2011.

As most of you know, the payroll tax only applies to the first $106,800 earned per year, meaning the more you make above that cap (which President Obama has expressed interest in lifting), the less of an impact you will feel from a change in that rate (compared to the amount you actually make). If the payroll tax cut is allowed to expire at the end of this year, those with smaller incomes would be disproportionately harmed.

Naturally, that's what congressional Republicans want:

Many of the same Republicans who fought hammer-and-tong to keep the George W. Bush-era income tax cuts from expiring on schedule are now saying a different temporary tax cut should end as planned. By their own definition, that amounts to a tax increase.

We've all heard the argument from Republicans that tax cuts create jobs. It's been ten years since the Bush tax cuts (which disproportionately benefit the wealthy) went into effect, and during those ten years, five of my relatives have lost jobs (to end up with lower-paying jobs). Meanwhile, my employment at the moment consists of bartending 2-3 times per month - not a job for me.

But tax cuts for the lower and middle classes make more sense. What do those who aren't as well off do with the money they make? They usually spend it or pay off debts. Unlike those who are wealthy, they can hardly afford to save much. Thus, reducing the payroll tax and reducing income taxes on those who are less well off is more likely to help the economy than trusting in trickle-down economics - based on a theory which has failed time and time again.

But with an election nearing, and congressional Republicans making having admitted that defeating Obama is their #1 priority, said Republicans have come out in support of something they have traditionally opposed: Higher taxes!

The 12-month tax reduction will cost the government about $120 billion this year, and a similar amount next year if it's renewed.

That worries Rep. David Camp, R-Mich., chairman of the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee, and a member of the House-Senate supercommittee tasked with finding new deficit cuts. Tax reductions, "no matter how well-intended," will push the deficit higher, making the panel's task that much harder, Camp's office said.

Yep, facing the likelihood that the President will be re-elected if the economy gets better, Dave Camp is suddenly worried about the impact that tax cuts on ordinary people might have on the deficit.

Then why did Camp and other Republicans enthusiastically support the Bush tax cuts of 2001, which were more than 10 times as costly to the government and which have contributed more to the national debt than even the costly wars in Iraq and Afghanistan?

(Of course, why did Camp and other Republicans enthusiastically support the wars in Iraq in the first place? But I digress.)

It all comes back to the sentiment expressed in Mitch McConnell's infamous statement that "The single most important thing we want to achieve" is to make Obama lose in 2012. Not to focus on job creation, not to focus on reducing the deficit (which would happen if more jobs were created), but to stop this President from winning next year.

To them, the threat of a double-dip recession brought on by woes in Europe is not as dangerous as the threat that the most successful president in decades (per Rachel Maddow) just might be given a second term by the nation that decisively voted him in three years ago.

To them, denying the Nobel Laureate a second term is more important than doing what makes economic and moral sense.

To them, stopping our freely elected President from serving our country for another four years is more important than being patriotic and doing what's best for our country.

To them, making the less fortunate suffer is okay (even though the Bible, in which they claim to believe, says otherwise) if that's what it takes to defeat this President.

To them, defeating the constitutional-law-professor-turned-Chief-Executive is worth walking back their anti-tax pledges and other 'principles.'


Amash blasts both parties, then raises money for one of them just hours later

What say ye, Congressman?

I've had enough of each party blaming the other for this debt crisis that they jointly got us into. I implore my colleagues to cut back on the partisan rhetoric and think instead about the American people, who are on the brink of ruin because of Congress' persistent refusal to act responsibly.

Interesting that Amash would say that.* Especially given that just a few hours after he posted that, he raised some cash for the Party of Palin.

Young Republicans who want to meet Calley will have a chance Monday at a $100-a-head fundraiser hosted by “The Young Party-ers,” the Kent County GOP’s new initiative to recruit young professionals.

Calley, the second-youngest lieutenant governor in state history, will be joined by U.S. Rep. Justin Amash, the second-youngest member of Congress, at the Republic Restaurant, 45 S. Division Ave.

This is probably not the first you've heard or read of the 'both-parties-are-at-fault-for-what's-going-on-in-Washington' canard. And I'm sure it won't be the last, since polls show that Americans blame Republicans for the economic mess we're in, the mess DC's in, and so forth.

But it's interesting that Amash would raise money for a Party he blames for the deficit.

*I actually agree with him on the second sentence of his status. – Congress (or at least many leaders thereof) have not done their jobs. Still, it's a heck of a stretch to say that both parties "jointly got us into" the debt.