Thursday, September 18, 2008

Tax plans

One of the biggest lies being told in the current US political campaign - at least that I've heard - is the McCain campaign attempting to assert that Obama would raise taxes and they would not; usually this is phrased as 'raising taxes on the middle class' which is where most people see themselves.

The graphic below is the most accurate representation I've seen of the *actual* impact of the stated tax plans for the two contenders (McCain and Obama). Net: if this is the basis on which you wish to vote, than unless you make more than $160K/year - and even if you do, assuming that you care about any form of social justice or income redistribution - you should be giving Obama your vote.

Yes, those making more than $600K/year should vote McCain. I expect that this is a group that Obama is willing to lose the votes of (even if not their contributions - which in and of itself might be a point to consider: who's catering to the big donors?).

Hat-tip to ChartJunk for the work in putting this together; thanks.


You know who. :) said...

Please define 'social justice'. Please explain your justification for providing goods and services at the point of a gun.

Ewan said...

Hi, JP (I assume!).

Let's note a priori that between a two week-old son, a six year-old, a new house and a new job, I'm not overburdened with time here :). And that I've had exactly this discussion with you several times already...

...but anyway: one of the most fundamental planks in my view of how the world should be is that the opportunity available to a random given child should depend as little as possible on the characteristics of that child's parents - wealth, education, location, etc. Hence: mandatory public schooling, redistributive tax policies, public health care, etc.

Leaving aside the frankly self-evident axiom that it is beneficial to society for the members of that society to be well-educated, productive, healthy and so on; I also happen to thank that it is immoral to have the degree of wealth inequity displayed in e.g. the US currently.

Appealing to morality rarely works with rabid anti-tax folks, though :), so I simply note that there is no gun involved: feel free to leave. As long as you wish to enjoy the benefits of living in the US, though - for example - then the rules of that society include taxation, and after that it's simply a manner of degree - as you know, I believe that a more progressive taxation scheme and higher social benefits are good things.

Care to justify in other than cant a justification for condemning children to poverty and starvation while you live in plenty?