1. An Introduction To, And A Basic Overview Of, The Fake Economics Republicans Push
2. Ronald Reagan's Policies Began The Destruction Of The Middle Class & The Constitution
3. BREAKING... The Misunderstood Economy: What Counts and How to Count It OR Real Economics VS Fake Economics: How The Kochs Are Destroying America By Attacking Its Societal Structures In Favor Of Social Darwinism Or "Survival Of The Fittest"
4. Supply Side Economics: Do Tax Rate Cuts Increase Growth and Revenues and Reduce Budget Deficits ? Or Is It Voodoo Economics All Over Again?
Trump's economic strategy (tax plan) is the same package of lies and misinformation the GOP and Fox News ALWAYS push, i.e. they say "this is a new economic plan that will help the country" and then push the same bull that they have used to destroy the economy in the past (as Jon Stewart explained before). This post updates and summarizes the GOP's lies on economics.
TRUMP PERFORMS A TAX MIRACLE (ALLEGEDLY) 9/28/2017Even though President Trump claims his tax plan would help the middle class, Trevor finds out that the president and corporations would be the real beneficiaries.
Update of economic debunking of ongoing GOP lies & economic treason;
How the Republican Party Has Conned America for Over 30 Years Tax cuts initiate bubble economies, not true growth.
The Republican Party has been running a long con on the American people, and Trump’s new tax cut proposals are just the latest iteration on it. This con involves getting Democrats to shoot Santa Claus (Clinton cutting welfare/Obama proposing the chained CPI cut to Social Security) and using tax policy to put a jolly old Saint Nick outfit on the Republicans.
As Bruce Bartlett – one of the architects and major salespeople for Reagan’s tax cuts in the ‘80s – wrote in USA Today this week: “Virtually everything Republicans say about taxes today is a lie. Tax cuts and tax rate reductions will not pay for themselves; they never have. Republicans don’t even believe they will, they are just excuses to slash spending for the poor when revenues collapse and deficits rise. There is no evidence that tax reform raises growth, although it may improve fairness and tax administration.”
So how do Republicans get away with this lie, and why does the press let them get away with it? It’s a fascinating story.
Odds are you've never heard of Jude Wanniski, but without him Reagan never would have become a "successful" president, Republicans never would have taken control of the House or Senate, Bill Clinton never would have been impeached, and George Bush never would have become president. Ditto for Trump.
When Barry Goldwater went down to ignominious defeat in 1964, most Republicans felt doomed (among them the 28-year-old Wanniski). Goldwater himself, although uncomfortable with the rising religious right within his own party and the calls for more intrusion in people's bedrooms, was a diehard fan of Herbert Hoover's economic worldview.
In Hoover's world (and virtually all the Republicans since reconstruction with the exception of Teddy Roosevelt), market fundamentalism was a virtual religion. Economists from Ludwig von Mises to Friedrich Hayek to Milton Friedman had preached that government could only make a mess of things economic, and the world of finance should be left to the Big Boys – the Masters of the Universe, as they sometimes called themselves – who ruled Wall Street and international finance.
Hoover enthusiastically followed the advice of his Treasury Secretary, multimillionaire Andrew Mellon, who said in 1931: "Liquidate labor, liquidate stocks, liquidate the farmers, liquidate real estate. Purge the rottenness out of the system. High costs of living and high living will come down... enterprising people will pick up the wrecks from less competent people."
Thus, the Republican mantra was: "Lower taxes, reduce the size of government, and balance the budget."
The only problem with this ideology from the Hooverite perspective was that the Democrats always seemed like the bestowers of gifts, while the Republicans were seen by the American people as the stingy Scrooges, bent on making the lives of working people harder all the while making the very richest even richer. This, Republican strategists since 1930 knew, was no way to win elections.
Which was why the most successful Republican of the 20th century up to that time, Dwight D. Eisenhower, had been quite happy with a top income tax rate on multimillionaires of 91 percent. As he explained to his right-wing brother Edgar Eisenhower in a personal letter on November 8, 1954:
"[T]o attain any success it is quite clear that the Federal government cannot avoid or escape responsibilities which the mass of the people firmly believe should be undertaken by it. The political processes of our country are such that if a rule of reason is not applied in this effort, we will lose everything--even to a possible and drastic change in the Constitution. This is what I mean by my constant insistence upon 'moderation' in government."Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things. Among them are H. L. Hunt (you possibly know his background), a few other Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or business man from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid."
Goldwater, however, rejected the "liberalism" of Eisenhower, Rockefeller, and other "moderates" within his own party. Extremism in defense of liberty was no vice, he famously told the 1964 nominating convention, and moderation was no virtue. And it doomed him and his party.
And so after Goldwater's defeat, the Republicans were again lost in the wilderness just as after Hoover's disastrous presidency. Even four years later when Richard Nixon beat Hubert Humphrey in 1968, Nixon wasn't willing to embrace the economic conservatism of Goldwater and the economic true believers in the Republican Party. And Jerry Ford wasn't, in their opinions, much better. If Nixon and Ford believed in economic conservatism, they were afraid to practice it for fear of dooming their party to another 40 years in the electoral wilderness.
By 1974, Jude Wanniski had had enough. The Democrats got to play Santa Claus when they passed out Social Security and Unemployment checks – both programs of the New Deal – as well as when their "big government" projects like schools, hospitals, roads, bridges, and highways were built giving a healthy union paycheck to construction workers and driving economic growth. Democrats kept high taxes on businesses and rich people to pay for things, which worked out just fine for working people (wages were steadily going up, in fact), and made the Democrats seem like a party of Robin Hoods, taking from the rich to fund programs for the poor and the working class.
Americans loved it. And every time Republicans railed against these programs, they lost elections.
Everybody understood at the time that economies are driven by demand. People with good jobs have money in their pockets, and want to use it to buy things. The job of the business community is to either determine or drive that demand to their particular goods, and when they're successful at meeting the demand then factories get built, more people become employed to make more products, and those newly-employed people have a paycheck that further increases demand.
Wanniski decided to turn the classical world of economics – which had operated on this simple demand-driven equation for seven thousand years – on its head. In 1974 he invented a new phrase, "supply-side economics," and suggested that the reason economies grew wasn't because people had money and wanted to buy things with it, but instead, because things were available for sale, thus tantalizing people to part with their money. The more things there were, the faster the economy would grow.
At the same time, Arthur Laffer was taking that equation a step further. Not only was supply-side a rational concept, Laffer suggested, but as taxes went down, revenue to the government would go up!
Neither concept made any sense—and time has proven both to be colossal idiocies—but together they offered the Republican Party a way out of the wilderness.
Ronald Reagan was the first national Republican politician to suggest that he could cut taxes on rich people and businesses, that those tax cuts would cause them to take their surplus money and build factories to make more stuff, and that the more stuff there was supplying the economy the faster it would grow.
In the 1980 GOP primary, George Herbert Walker Bush – like most Republicans of the time – was horrified. Ronald Reagan was suggesting "Voodoo Economics," said Bush in the primary campaign, and Wanniski's supply-side and Laffer's tax-cut theories would throw the nation into such deep debt that we'd ultimately crash into another Republican Great Depression.
The nation of Greece may be the cradle of democracy but these days it's getting a harsh lesson in its limitations. Right now, streets are filled with protesters but there are no lines at ATMs because the banks are all closed. Everyone is waiting to see what's going to happen when the people vote this week-end on a referendum that will decide, essentially, if the country is going to remain in the Euro and accept the ongoing edicts of "the troika" or if it's going to "Grexit. 9≥ " (The troika is the European Commission, the European Central Bank, and the International Monetary Fund which has been lending the the country money for the past five years on the condition that it engage in the metaphorical human sacrifice of its citizens.)
MSNBC’s Velshi and Ruhle: Neither “legitimate economists” nor “recent history” back up ideas behind Trump’s tax plan Ali Velshi: "We have to note that this tax cutting is based on an unsupported assumption that doing so will somehow speed up the economy at such a rate that there will not be any increase to the deficit"
STEPHANIE RUHLE (CO-HOST): The president also tweeted this morning, quote, "The approval process for the biggest tax cut and tax reform package in the history of our country will soon begin. Move fast, Congress!" Exclamation point. Followed by, "With Irma and Harvey devastation, tax cuts and tax reform is needed more than ever before. Go Congress, go!"ALI VELSHI (CO-HOST): All right. What do we know? Let's just talk about what we know about the plan so we can actually talk about it. Walk with me over here and let me show you what the White House says the goals are. One of them is simplifying the tax code. Not a terrible goal. You can pretty much get everybody in the country to agree that the tax code is too complicated. So one thing they want to do is reduce the number of tax brackets to three instead of seven and eliminate the alternative minimum tax and the estate tax. This starts to get -- particularly the last one, the estate tax -- that starts to get a little more complicated and a little more political. Also among the goals are to reduce tax rates for individuals and businesses to grow the economy and do not add debt and deficit. We should put a fourth bullet here, Stephanie Ruhle, which is also to add a full head of hair to me because that's -- this it close to impossible. But we're going to discuss that as well. The White House has released a few specifics, not nearly enough for the biggest tax reform plan in the history of the planet. But we have a few specifics. The plan calls for doubling the standard deduction that you can take on your tax return, cutting the corporate tax rate to 15 percent from the current 35 percent. Just understand a couple things. We're not really at 35 percent. The rate that people pay, companies pay, is somewhere between 14 and 25 percent, depending how you are. And a lot of people, including the president, are backing away from getting down to 15 percent. That's hard to do. Not impossible, but hard. And extending reduced rates for small businesses. This could be interesting. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is indicating that this 15 percent corporate rate may be in jeopardy.[...]Secretary Mnuchin also said the goal now is to get tax reform. I really am loathe to use the term "tax reform" until I see what this is. It looks like tax cuts funded by the deficit. But he wants to get it done.RUHLE: We'll see.VELSHI: Right. Show me and we'll change our view on it. He wants to get it done by the end of the year. You remember the original goal was getting it done before the August recess. That was delayed because health care didn't get done. And we have to note that this tax cutting is based on an unsupported assumption that doing so will somehow speed up the economy at such a rate that there will not be any increase to the deficit.RUHLE: Very few legitimate economists support that notion and recent history doesn't support it either. What this might end up becoming is the biggest deficit finance tax cut in U.S. history with precious -- with very, very little reform, actually.
Fox host: Democrats are afraid of tax reform because the economy will grow so much that they won’t win any elections
Robert Reich: Donald Trump & Jeb Bush Plans Would Slash Taxes for the 1 Percent
On the campaign trail, Republican candidates are proposing massive new tax cuts for the rich despite growing economic inequality across the country. On Monday, Donald Trump unveiled a plan to lower the income tax rate to the lowest level since 1931, cut corporate taxes and abolish the estate tax. Meanwhile, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush has proposed broad tax cuts for individuals and corporations as part of his economic plan. Under the plan, Bush himself would save millions of dollars in taxes. We speak to Robert Reich. He served as labor secretary under President Clinton and is a professor at the University of California, Berkeley. His newest book is “Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few.”
Fox News does its propaganda marketing to push the lies (lying to push thier leaders agenda, no matter what it is, seems to be the Fox News mandate)...
Fox & Friends casts Trump as "Robin Hood" amid reports he may refresh tax agenda Stuart Varney: Rumored Trump tax proposal "a complete reversal of everything you have ever thought about from the Republican Party"
Charles Gasparino: The middle class doesn't pay a lot of tax, so we should cut taxes for the richGasparino: "It sounds good to say let's do a middle class tax cut" but "they don't pay a lot of the taxes"
Fox host: Democrats are afraid of tax reform because the economy will grow so much that they won’t win any elections Brian Kilmeade: "Do you think there might be on some level a fear among Democrats that if tax reform is passed for America, the economy will grow at such a rate it will be impossible for them to win an election?"
MSNBC cuts from Trump's speech on tax reform to remind viewers he's a hypocrite Stephanie Ruhle: "I have to say they're stunning to hear the president talk about the honor and beauty of American-made craftsmanship where we have to remind you, both the president and his daughter ... do not make any of their products in the United States"
STEPHANIE RUHLE (CO-HOST): All right, we're going to continue to monitor the president's remarks. I have to say they're stunning to hear the president talk about the honor and beauty of American-made craftsmanship where we have to remind you, both the president and his daughter and their lifestyle brands do not make any of their products in the United States. And based on the last reporting done, when we had reached out to Ivanka Trump's company, run by her president Abigail Klem, there were no plans to move any of those productions to the United States.
CNN’s David Fahrenthold exposes the hypocrisy of Trump’s push for companies to manufacture products in the US
CNN's Jake Tapper: Trump’s “Made in America” push “requires all to pay no attention to the label on Trump” merchandise
MSNBC hosts offer a perfect cable news template for covering Trump’s tax cut charade Ali Velshi and Stephanie Ruhle dismantle arguments that Trump plan will benefit the economy
In response to the release of a new Republican tax proposal, three consecutive segments hosted by MSNBC’s Ali Velshi and Stephanie Ruhle offered a perfect example of how cable news ought to cover President Donald Trump’s tax agenda.
The September 27 edition of MSNBC Live with Velshi and Ruhle opened with the co-hosts breaking down the entire Trump tax cut plan. Velshi argued that proposed income tax changes were “a little smoke and mirrors” and would have no “meaningful effect on prosperity” for most Americans, additionally explaining how Trump’s proposal to eliminate the estate and alternative minimum taxes -- which would result in massive tax giveawaysto the Trump family -- “is a boon for the wealthy.”
When Velshi explained Trump’s proposal to cut corporate tax rates, Ruhle interjected that Trump’s own companies (along with “law firms and hedge funds”) would benefit from the changes. Velshi concluded that the plan “overwhelmingly supports those who are higher earners” while Ruhle argued it is simply “disingenuous” to claim the middle class would benefit from Trump’s plan:
The hosts then brought in CNBC correspondent John Harwood to discuss the tax plan, where he, too, stressed that the Trump plan “is simply not a tax proposal that is geared toward the middle class” and reminded viewers that Trump’s strategy resembles the failed tax cuts enacted by President George W. Bush. Obama administration press secretary Josh Earnest joined the conversation, concluding the segment by noting that none of Trump’s rally goers are motivated by reduced taxes for the rich and corporations:
After thoroughly dismantling the Trump administration’s tax agenda, the program turned to conservative policy analyst Michael Strain of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), who also noted that the plan, as it stands today, would be unlikely to fulfill Trump’s promises of increased economic growth and would end up adding to federal budget deficits. At the end of the segment, Earnest once again noted the “internal inconsistency” at play when Trump, after recently arguing the rich don’t need a tax cut, proposes a plan that gives them one:
Even Fox’s Chris Wallace is pointing out “there is no evidence tax cuts pay for themselves”
On MSNBC, economist Jared Bernstein dismantles Trump administration excuses for ending DACA Bernstein: AG Jeff Sessions' economic arguments for destroying DACA "veered from misleading into lie"
STEPHANIE RUHLE (CO-HOST): President Trump -- who touts himself a pro-business president, a job creator -- has got to answer to [Berkshire Hathaway CEO] Warren Buffett, [General Motors CEO] Mary Barra, [Facebook CEO] Mark Zuckerberg, and 300 other business leaders urging the president not to do this. Why? This isn't just a social issue for them. This is about business. There's a real economic impact.JARED BERNSTEIN: You're absolutely right, and I'll get into the analysis in a second. But first, I just have to say this: What we just heard from [Attorney General] Jeff Sessions was one of the most shameless presentations I've heard, and that's saying a lot these days. Some of what he said, especially on the economy as you suggested, veered from misleading into lie. And I'll be specific. But if you guys could zoom in on the Statue of Liberty right now, I suspect she'd be shedding a tear. This is a dark day for our country.Look, when it comes to jobs, Sessions just asserted that the Dreamers, the DACA recipients, are taking jobs from native-born workers. There is zero evidence for that. Completely unsubstantiated, and, in fact, is not the case based on some of the numbers that Ali [Velshi] was citing. The fact that these folks have been here since they were kids. Many of them in the labor market. Over 90 percent -- about 95 [percent] working or in school. He mentioned they were a drain on Social Security: lie. The Social Security actuaries have told us that, in fact, the opposite is the case. Same with [Congressional Budget Office's] budgetary analysis, the DACA recipients seem to contribute more in revenues than they cost in spending. These are folks who disproportionately pay taxes. These are folks who disproportionately start businesses. This is really kicking in the own goal when it comes to helping the economy.
Media run with discredited nativist group's research to claim more than half of immigrant households receive "welfare"
Economist Jeffrey Sachs slams Trump's "unbelievable" and "shambolic" tax agenda Sachs: "This is Donald Trump trying to end the estate tax so he can pass along his wealth to his children"
WILLIE GEIST (CO-HOST): The president calls it a "middle class miracle" already. What do you call it?
JEFFERY SACHS: I call it unbelievable that it took them eight months to write what should've taken about three hours. There's not a number here, there's not a table here. This has nothing to do with fiscal reform, this has nothing to do with fiscal conservatism. This is rich people that pay for the Republican Party wanting taxes cut. This is Donald Trump trying to end the estate tax so he can pass along his wealth to his children.
This is shambolic. It's unbelievable that in nine months--
RUTH MARCUS: Is that a technical tax term?
SACHS: It is a tax-- of course. There's not a table in here. It's unbelievable. They don't have the numbers. What were they doing the last nine months? And (Rep.) Mark Meadows (R-NC) frankly, come on. He was asked why don't we do this-- have some hearings, have some testimony, develop something in committees, said we've been doing that for nine months. Mr. Meadows, get with it.
This is not a Democracy right now. This is a disgrace and that's why, Mr. Meadows, your health care legislation tanked because it was done secretly. This is the same business. It's a game. This is not a plan. It's not a plan and it's not reform.
Taxes are higher than ever! Whites face discrimination! How do we combat alternative reality?Conservatives’ false beliefs about race and economics are related — understanding how is crucial to defeating them
“Alternative facts” are bad enough, but we’re facing something far more serious: alternative worldviews in which up is down, future is past and all bets are off. Simply reacting to the most outrageous lies is not strategically smart enough. We need to work more seriously on a more comprehensive response — even as we need to become more sensitive to how far the inversions of reality have spread, and what ends they serve.
For example, the day before taxes were due, NPR reported on an IPSOS poll that found that a 44 percent plurality of Americans mistakenly believed that the richer pay more now than they did in 1980, when the top marginal income tax rate was 70 percent —compared to 39.6 percent today. Among Republicans, 52 percent believe this false picture, compared to just 28 percent who don’t.
Democrats, in contrast, were almost evenly split, 39 percent to 43 percent. This bizarre distortion helps explain why Republicans always push for tax cuts, and are doing so even now, above and beyond their donors’ obvious self-interest: It fits how the majority of their base sees the world and at the same time divides the Democrats, who remain confused and divided. Republicans would be crazy not to push for tax cuts, given this distribution of false belief and their utter unconcern with real-world consequences.
There’s also the fact that conservatives never stop complaining about the "tax burden" and "government waste." As Matt Grossman and David Hopkins argue in "Asymmetric Politics" (Salon stories here and here), the Democratic Party is a coalition of interest groups, while the Republicans are a vehicle for the conservative movement. So it makes sense that Republican politicians would repeat such conservative messages incessantly, while Democrats don't devote nearly as much energy to countering them, or even developing the language to do so. Given the persistence of such messaging, and the related distribution of accurate and wildly inaccurate views, the Trump-touted return of Laffer Curve logic I recently wrote about makes perfect sense.
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