James Pethokoukis

That millionaire healthcare surtax would have to be …

July 23, 2009

… about 6 percent, according to the Tax Foundation, to theoretically raise the same amount of dough as also having surtaxes on those making over $350,000. Now this assumes wealthy Americans wouldn’t scramble to reduce their tax liabilities via all manner of tax-sheltering strategies. Of course, such behavior isn’t economically efficient as Obama himself knows:

Pelosi: If surtax passes, it’s staying, get used to it

July 16, 2009

Madam Speaker speaks (via The Hill) about the surtax and what it might be used for:

The healthcare surtax and bull semen partnerships

July 14, 2009

Howard Gleckman of the Tax Policy Center throws cold water on Obamacrat attempts to raise income taxes to pay for healthcare reform:

A zero percent income tax rate

July 14, 2009

Think tanker Peter Ferrara talks up an interesting idea in the WSJ:

But what if Republicans proposed a federal tax reform with a 0% income tax rate for the bottom 60% of income earners?  … Trading an explicit 0% tax rate for the bottom 60% in return for eliminating the refundable tax credits would likely be at least revenue neutral, and probably result in a net increase in revenue. … Moreover, we should then be free to adopt sound tax policy for the top 40% of earners who make 75% of total income. Suppose we tax all of the income of those top 40% once with a 15% flat tax? That would be close to revenue neutral on a dynamic basis (i.e. counting work incentive effects). … All flat tax proposals effectively try to do the same through generous personal exemptions that are tax neutral for low- and moderate-income workers. But the explicit 0% rate would make the reform more easily understood. This — rather than adopting still more refundable tax credits as some conservatives are advocating — is also the way to eliminate the distorting tax preference for employer-provided health insurance. … The economic distortions caused by every other tax preference in the code would be minimized or eliminated entirely in this same way.

The link between deficits and taxes

June 18, 2009

This chart from ClusterStock confirms what I have been saying: big deficits lead to higher taxes (1982, 1990, 1993, 2009) … at least I think it does