Friday, December 10, 2010

My begrudging support of the tax deal with Republicans

I don't like tax subsidies for the wealthiest two percent of Americans. It's an idea that sickens me. If Republicans are so concerned about the budget deficit, then they ought to think twice about appeasing this small segment of the population, and consider how much the deficit is going to grow thanks to the billions of dollars this tax deal is going to give back to the ultra-rich.

And yet...I cannot fault the president for choosing this route, for taking the less-than-popular view that a deal had to be made. I'm going to get a lot of "boos" for this, I'm sure. But the facts are the facts -- without this deal, tax rates for the remaining 98 percent of the population are going to expire.

Real, working-class Americans cannot afford a tax hike; wealthy Americans can. But because the GOP decided to hold this country hostage in order to ensure that the wealthiest of the wealthy could buy another yacht or vacation home (when everyone else is struggling to buy a home or to keep the one they've got), it's crucial that a compromise be met. The Republicans have shown that they're not going to budge on this issue -- and considering the issues they've refused to budge on in the past two years alone, this is probably as good a deal as we're going to get.

Austan Goolsbee explains it better, in his latest video message, viewable here after the jump:

Still: This deal sickens me. It makes my blood boil. At a time when millions of Americans are struggling with the financial chaos created by Wall Street and big banks, the GOP is holding out to make sure that two percent of Americans, who are perfectly capable of living a life of comfort, continue to receive an obscene amount of tax subsidies.

All while workers struggle to find work, homes continue to be foreclosed, students are forced to drop out of college due to costs, people that can find jobs can only find low-paying ones...

The greed is sickening.

It seems, however, that for the next two years, we have no other choice.

I -- begrudgingly -- support the president's tax deal with Republicans. And though I admire the opposition to his plan, though I don't for one second believe that those who still have fight left in them should give up, I believe that the consequences to that opposition could be dire for millions of American families.

The stakes are too high. Continue the fight -- but in the 11th hour, if it cannot be changed, passed, and signed by the president, we must do what's best for those who have the least, even if that means adding more to the bank accounts of America's richest.

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