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    Posted November 28, 2012 by
    Farmersburg, Indiana
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    President's Call for a 'Balanced Approach' Not the Whole Story


    The  fiscal cliff is now in sight and no one wants to go plunging over the  edge...at least that's what all the politicians in Washington DC are  saying. Whether in the White House or in Congress the talk is a way must  be found to avert crashing over the edge.

    Here's  the reality. The latest poll says that 60% of the nation wants taxes  increased on the rich. Rich is being defined as individuals making  $200,000 per year or more and couples making a combined $250,000 per  year or more. Of course when you use the term rich, depends on where you  are on the economic ladder what is considered rich. For people like me  not even able to get to the ladder, anyone making $30,000 to $50,000 per  year is rich!

    There  are other polls which state that between 20 to 25% of the people think  taxes should go up on everyone. These folks have no problem with the  Bush/Obama tax cuts not being extended.

    President  Barack Obama, as he stated in his news conference today, is looking for  a "balanced approach". Of course the only thing the President is  talking about is raising tax rates on the rich. He said it was not fair  and was not a "balanced approach" to let the rich folks not pay more in  taxes. The President said the balanced approach was to make sure the tax  cut extension should be kept for the middle class immediately and worry  about the rest of the fiscal mess some time next year.

    What  the President is not talking about is that everyone who works for a  living will see a tax increase come January 1 whether the rich get taxed  more or not. The much hyped $40 savings in your paycheck from last year  is going down the drain. That's right the payroll tax cut will not be  extended. No one in Congress or the White House is putting an extension  for those taxes on the table. So, no matter whether you are low income,  middle class or rich, if you get a paycheck, come January you will see  an increase in your taxes.

    What  else is not being talked about is how the dividend tax will also be  going up come January 1st unless Congress and the President come to an  understanding. For millions of seniors, on fixed incomes, an increase on  the dividend tax could have a real impact on their lifestyle. Many  seniors depend on these dividends to buy their medicine, supplement  their Social Security, buy groceries and live independently. For these  seniors, most in the middle class, they are staring down a double barreled shotgun.

    Then  there's the alternative minimum tax rate which if not addressed will  also be rising substantially. Millions of middle class small business  owners and others will see a sharp increase in their tax burden which  may have a major impact on their ability to operate.

    Let's  not forget also at issue is the much maligned capital gains tax. That  tax is set to rise from 15% to 20%. Plus add to that the extra taxes  that take effect from the Affordable Care Act. Which means that the  ballyhooed raise in rate to 39.6% is actually much higher. The real rate  will be about 43% in January plus those investments which are funded by  money already taxed previously as income will be taxed again at a 5%  higher rate.

    So  far, all I am hearing about the "balanced approach" is extending the  Bush/Obama tax cuts for the middle class and raising the rate on the  rich. I am not hearing anything about cutting spending or reining in the  cost of the government doing business.

    Where's the balance?

    I  am not opposed to the rich paying more. What I am opposed to is calling  the method balanced or fair when the only thing on the table is a rate  hike for only one group of Americans with no address of the deficit and  spending cuts.

    The  President today in his news conference said the revenue raised from a  rate hike on the rich would be used for education and infrastructure.  That's not what he said on the campaign trail when he said it would go  toward getting the deficit under control.

    Instead what we got today was more talk about more spending.

    I  do, however, believe, as some Democratic lawmakers stated last year  that the rate hike should not kick in until at least $1 million. There  are too many making $200,000 per year living in high cost-of-living  areas that will be affected. Reality is these folks are middle class,  not rich.

    From  the Cornfield, if we are going to have a "balanced approach", we need  to be talking about everything - not just increased revenues from the  rich. We need spending cuts. We need Medicare, Medicaid and Social  Security reform. We need cuts in the Defense Department. We need cuts  throughout the federal government.

    Increase  revenue? Not a problem, but the increased revenue must be managed  properly. To date, Congress and the Executive Branch have proven to be  poor stewards of the nation's finances.

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