Two contrasting editorials about what is at stake in the November election

The Las Vegas Sun has an editorial that is nothing more than lengthy excerpts from a recent Obama speech under the headline: “Don’t sit on the sidelines for the most consequential election of your life.”

Obama is quoted as saying:

This November’s election is more important than any I can remember in my lifetime. And I know politicians say that all the time, but this time it really is different. This time the stakes are higher. …

Politicians try to keep us angry, keep us cynical, and they appeal to our tribal instincts and appeal to fear. They try to pit one group against another. And they tell us order and security will be restored if it weren’t for those people who don’t look like us or sound like us or pray like we do. …

On Nov. 6, we have a chance to restore some sanity to our politics. We can tip the balance of power back to the American people. Because you are the only check on bad policy, you’re the only real check on abuses of power. It’s you and your vote.

Hollow and pompous rhetoric without any specifics.

On the other hand, The Wall Street Journal has an editorial under the headline, “The Election Tax Divide,” that says precisely what is at stake in November.

Republicans are pushing a bill that would make the tax cuts for individuals and families permanent. Currently, obscure rules about deficit scoring force the expiration of individual tax cuts at the end of 2025.

Democrats want to repeal the tax cuts outright. They especially are foaming at the mouth about the $10,000 cap on the state and local tax deduction that means fewer IRS deductions for rich Democrats in high-tax states like California and New York.

Come Election Day, WSJ implores: “If nothing else, the House proposal makes clear that Republicans want to cut taxes while Democrats want to raise them. Voters who want to continue the economy’s robust growth should keep that in mind.”



15 comments on “Two contrasting editorials about what is at stake in the November election

  1. Rincon says:

    So Thomas wants our deficit to continue expanding at a rate much faster than our increase in GDP. Got it.

  2. Tax revenue has increased since tax cuts, but spending increased even more. Tax cuts not reason for deficits.

  3. Rincon says:

    Since the tax cuts were passed in December of 2017, and since the tax returns for 2018 income aren’t due until 2019, it’s really curious that you believe they were responsible for the increased tax revenue. It shot up that fast in less than a month? Or are you assuming increased revenues for the first 9 months of 2018 when the tax returns haven’t even been processed yet?

    No matter what, you’re crowing about an extremely short term gain – and an extremely small one, which may have easily occurred with or without tax cuts in an expanding economy. We’ve been through this before, but since the Bush and Reagan tax cuts did not have this effect in the short or long term, your conclusion rests on shaky ground. Clinton’s tax increases, on the other hand, rewarded us with a booming economy and an eventual budget surplus. Where is your evidence for the opinion that tax cuts add to government revenue? I see none.

  4. Stephen Moore in WSJ: “Compare the August 2018 economic forecast from the Congressional Budget Office with the one from June 2017, before the tax cuts passed, and we discover some very good news. The much higher than expected economic growth in the wake of the Trump tax cut means that U.S. gross domestic product will be higher than expected every year over the next decade.

    “Even if we assume a reversion to the pre-Trump 1.9% growth path, the ratchet up in GDP this year translates into $179 billion in unexpected output this year, $465 billion next year, $654 billion in 2020, and so on. This magic of compounding yields more than $6 trillion additional GDP over the decade thanks to the faster growth already achieved.

    “The federal government is expected to capture a bit more than 18% of that extra output in tax revenue—about $1.1 trillion over the 10-year window. That’s well above the $400 billion to $500 billion expected revenue loss from the corporate tax-rate cut.

    “Corporate tax revenues are down this year, but receipts from nearly every other tax source are rising at the federal and state levels. The higher growth this year alone will give states and cities almost $20 billion in windfall revenue. No surprise then that many states are reporting “unexpected” gains in tax collections this year and will have budget surpluses.”

  5. Rincon says:

    Leave it to the WSJ to jump on 10 months of news while assiduously ignoring 50 years of history.

  6. Steve says:

    Attacking the messenger doesn’t change the message.

  7. Rincon says:

    So you’re on the side saying that 10 months of good news negates 50 years of history. Got it.

  8. Steve says:

    Telling others what they are saying doesn’t change the message.

    Revenues are up as a direct effect of lower tax rates. Deal with it.

  9. Rincon says:

    I have to tell you what you’re saying because you don’t appear to understand the logical conclusions from your statements. Deal with it.

  10. Rincon says:

    The idea that decreasing taxes increases revenue defies logic. First is the implicit assumption that money taxed does not increase GDP. Obviously, if a tax results in the government repairing a bridge or buying a jet fighter, it increases GDP just as much or more than a consumer purchasing a Korean made washer and dryer. But let’s be extremely generous and say for the sake of argument that government is 50% less efficient than private enterprise in its spending.

    According to Wikipedia, the 2017 tax bill will save taxpayers about $110 billion per year on average. This $110 billion according to you, goes into growing our economy.

    Now, if we assume that the government spending this lost revenue would have yielded only half the benefits to the economy as does the foregone revenue going to individuals and corporations, then the economy “gains” about $55 billion per year from the tax cuts, which means that total tax revenue would increase at about 25% of that extra $55 billion or $13.75 billion (again, a generous assumption. Total taxes equal about 25% of GDP. The increase from income and corporate tax alone would be less). According to your logic, using these extremely generous assumptions, the extra tax revenue from the foregone tax revenue (is that an oxymoron?) is -$41.25 billion. This means that every dollar in tax cuts must somehow triple every year to actually bring an increase in tax revenue, Since a 10% a year is considered to be a good return on investment, assuming a 300% return is pretty outlandish. Can you explain how that is possible?.

  11. Rincon says:

    Sorry. For the statement that total taxes equal 25% of GDP:

  12. Steve says:

    Making stuff up, claiming it was said by others (in this case me) is not comprehension, it’s avoidance.
    Revenues are up as a direct result of lower tax rates.

    deal with it

  13. Rincon says:

    Nice attempt at deflection by ignoring rather than responding to my words. Amazing that someone who blithely asserts that our change in climate is certainly a coincidence and mostly of natural causes (with no evidence to support that view) is quite willing to dismiss the possibility that the economy could easily also be a coincidence and might have done as well or better regardless. Your belief in coincidences doesn’t follow the probabilities; it follows what you prefer to believe.

    Fact is, at least some of the boost in the economy CAN be ascribed to the tax bill, not so much because it decreased taxes (which probably had a modest effect, although not enough to offset its cost) but because it increased government spending on borrowed money, a time honored way to goose the economy.

  14. Steve says:

    Doubling down does not change the message.

    deal with it

  15. Rincon says:

    I have.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s