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Sep 22, 2010

Wealthy benefit most from tax subsidies: study

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Billions of dollars in U.S. tax breaks to encourage home ownership, retirement savings, business start-ups and education mostly benefit top income earners and do little to help low- and middle-income people build wealth, a report released on Wednesday said.

The U.S. government spent nearly $400 billion, mostly through tax breaks, in 2009 to promote home ownership and other wealth-building strategies and more than half of that benefited the wealthiest 5 percent of taxpayers, said the study sponsored by the nonprofit Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED).

Sep 22, 2010

Wealthy benefit most from U.S. tax subsidies-study

WASHINGTON, Sept 22 (Reuters) – Billions of dollars in U.S.
tax breaks to encourage home ownership, retirement savings,
business start-ups and education mostly benefit top income
earners and do little to help low- and middle-income people
build wealth, a report released on Wednesday said.

The U.S. government spent nearly $400 billion, mostly
through tax breaks, in 2009 to promote home ownership and other
wealth-building strategies and more than half of that benefited
the wealthiest 5 percent of taxpayers, said the study sponsored
by the nonprofit Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Corporation
for Enterprise Development (CFED).

Sep 16, 2010

Poverty rate hits 15-year high

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. poverty rate rose to 14.3 percent in 2009 from 13.2 percent the year before, bringing the percentage of the population living in poverty to the highest level since 1994, as the economic downturn took its toll on jobs, the government said on Thursday.

The Census Bureau said 43.6 million people, or one in seven Americans, lived in poverty last year, up from 39.8 million in 2008. The data paints a picture of rising hardship and declining incomes for many living in the United States and hands more bad economic news to Democrats ahead of November 2 congressional elections.

Sep 16, 2010

U.S. poverty rate hits 15-year high

WASHINGTON, Sept 16 (Reuters) – The U.S. poverty rate rose
to 14.3 percent in 2009 from 13.2 percent the year before,
bringing the percentage of the population living in poverty to
the highest level since 1994, as the economic downturn took its
toll on jobs, the U.S. government said on Thursday.

The U.S. Census Bureau said 43.6 million people, or one in
seven Americans, lived in poverty last year, up from 39.8
million in 2008. The data paints a picture of rising hardship
and declining incomes for many living in the United States and
hands more bad economic news to Democrats ahead of Nov. 2
congressional elections.

Sep 14, 2010

Bill to aid small-business advances in Senate

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Democrats in the Senate advanced a measure to help small businesses on Tuesday, less than two months before they face voters who blame them for an economy still burdened with high unemployment.

The 61 to 37 vote enables Democrats to move toward a final vote on a long-stalled package of lending incentives and tax breaks for small businesses, possibly by the end of the week. The House of Representatives has already passed a similar version of the bill.

Sep 3, 2010
via Tales from the Trail

It was just a game of golf!

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Ever since he played golf with President Barack Obama last week, New York newspapers have been rife with speculation that Mayor Michael Bloomberg is being wooed by the administration to replace Timothy Geithner as Treasury Secretary. 

The White House dismissed the speculation as fantasy and Bloomberg dismissed the idea. But still as summer draws to an end, what else is there to talk about going into the Labor Day holiday weekend except the lackluster U.S. economy?

Aug 26, 2010
via Tales from the Trail

Tit for tat

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Deficit commission co-chair Alan Simpson has apologized for remarks to a women’s group that compared Social Security to a “milk cow with 310 million tits.”

But that is not good enough for the National Organization for Women (NOW),  which has launched a “Tits for an Ass” campaign to toss the former Republican senator off the panel that was created by President Barack Obama to recommend ways to cut the $1.4 trillion deficit.

Aug 25, 2010

U.S. deficit panel chair stirs uproar over remark

WASHINGTON, Aug 25 (Reuters) – The co-chairman of a
commission on the U.S. budget deficit came under fire on
Wednesday after an off-color remark that likened the payment of
government retirement benefits to milking cows.

Women’s groups and some lawmakers called for the
resignation of Alan Simpson, a Republican who serves on the
bipartisan deficit panel created by President Barack Obama.

Aug 25, 2010

U.S. deficit panel chair apologizes for cow remark

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The co-chairman of a commission on the U.S. budget deficit apologized on Wednesday after likening the handing out of government retirement benefits to milking cows.

Alan Simpson, a Republican who serves on the bipartisan deficit panel created by President Barack Obama, wrote this week that the Social Security retirement program has reached the point “where it’s like a milk cow with 310 million tits.”

Aug 25, 2010
via Tales from the Trail

Social Security and milking cows

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An email by deficit commission co-chair Alan Simpson saying the Social Security retirement program has reached a point “where it’s like a milk cow with 310 million tits” is prompting calls for his resignation.

Ashley Carson, executive director of OWL which calls itself the voice of midlife and older women, said the email sent to her by Simpson was “insulting.” Other comments about “greedy geezers” by the former Republican senator fail to recognize that many older women rely on less than $12,000 a year in Social Security benefits, she said.

    • About Donna

      "Washington congressional correspondent specializing in economics, taxes and budget issues. Covered the healthcare reform legislation and President George W. Bush's push to overhaul Social Security. Also covered the savings and loan crisis and spent time covering the White House during President Bill Clinton's administration. Covered trade and Federal Reserve policy as well."
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