President Obama has proposed a $447 billion stimulus plan that includes rehiring thousands of teachers, police officers and firefighters, and tax relief for employees and employers. Senate Democrats want to pay for the plan through a 5.6 percent surtax on those making more than $1 million per year. Leading economists say the stimulus plan could produce up to 1 million jobs.
And what does Representative Paul Ryan think about raising taxes on the uber-wealthy to help the majority middle class: “These tax increases don’t put a dent in the deficit, but they do a lot of damage to the economy,” he said at the Washington Ideas Forum. Paul Ryan has also called the act of raising taxes on millionaires "class warfare".
Really, Paul? Putting a 5.6% surtax on millionaires will do a lot of damage to the economy?
- Only 235,413 US citizens (1%) earned $1 million or more in 2009
- 1,470 millionaires paid NO taxes in 2009
- 261 members (49%) of congress are millionaires
- The average income for American taxpayers fell to $54,283 -- a drop of $3,516, or about 6.1 percent
- According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, 512,000 government jobs at the federal, state and local level in the past 18 months have been lost.
- During the same time frame, nearly 2.4 million private-sector jobs were created.
Now that we have seen the facts, I think Paul Ryan and the GOP need to recognize that the American middle class (98% of us) have taken a larger hit recently than we are proposing millionaires take next year. Raising taxes slightly on 235,413 millionaires to help bring back 500,000 middle class government jobs (and probably more) seems more than fair.
So what exactly is Paul Ryan's big plan to "fix" the economic situation? He still wants to take away the guarantee of Medicare and send grandma and grandpa a coupon worth up to, say $8,000 so that they can hop in their wheelchairs and go insurance shopping themselves.
Go ahead and take your 81 year old mother who has alzheimers, diabetes or cancer, or any other pre-existing condition insurance shopping and see how for that $8,000 goes.
And what about the tens of thousands of Wisconsin teachers, nurses, social workers, and other public employees who were forced to give up at least 5.6% of their take-home pay to help "balance the budget"? When a teacher claims it is unfair to make them contribute 5.6% more they are called a "thug" or "greedy". When a millionaire is asked to contribute 5.6% more it is called "class warfare".
If asking millionaires to pitch in the same amount as teachers and social workers is starting a class warfare in America, then my family has been drafted onto the front lines. In fact, on my little block alone in the Village of Greendale there are at least 5 other families who have seen someone drafted into Paul Ryan's "class warfare".
If this is class warfare, what side would you fight for? Does your home, car and living-style resemble that of a millionaire, or a "union thug"?