Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Tax Hikes, Forsooth

Some time ago the liberal media was excoriating Republicans for what they referred to as “sleazy rhetoric” in referring to the expiration of tax cuts as “tax hikes.” Republicans were, at the time, accusing Democrats of “raising taxes” because they were attempting to let the “Bush tax cuts” expire, and the liberal media regarded that as some kind of dastardly accusation, because letting tax cuts expire is not the same thing as raising taxes.

In fact, Chris Matthews and others claimed, Republicans made the Bush tax cuts expire on purpose, specifically so that they could later accuse the Democrats of raising taxes when the Democrats tried to let them expire. You follow that? The claim is actually rather astonishing, in that it would require that the Republicans knew that the Democrats would be in power when the Bush tax cuts expired, which is taking the “reading of political tea leaves” to a rather ridiculous extreme.

Then Obama comes along and gets a “payroll tax cut” passed and, guess what; it has an expiration date. How many people are surprised, now, when President Obama accuses the Republicans of raising taxes when the Republicans want to let the “Obama payroll tax cut” expire?

"This payroll tax is set to expire at the end of next month. ... If we allow that to happen, if Congress refuses to act, then middle-class families are going to get hit with a tax increase at the worst possible time," Obama said. "We can't let that happen, not right now."

(Emphasis mine) Indeed, we cannot let the Republicans “hit the public with a tax increase.” Give me a break.

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