Gazette: “Giddy Up” On Tax Policy

Aaron Flint posted on September 26, 2010 21:30 :: 1004 Views

Well, give it to The Billings Gazette editorial board for at least being willing to call on Senator Max Baucus (D-MT), chairman of the US Senate Finance Committee, to at least give folks in the business community some sense of certainty when it comes to next year’s taxes. 

Here’s part of what the Gazette had to say in this editorial:

In a recent Gazette guest opinion, Baucus wrote that he was “working to provide the certainty small businesses need to invest and hire new workers” by passing the Small Business Jobs Bill. With that accomplished, Montana’s senior senator must focus on creating certainty for all income tax payers. All of us will be affected by a 2001 tax cut law expiring in December. What will the law be starting Jan. 1? Nobody knows; that’s the problem.

But before you get too…well- giddy- rest assured that the board still has a limited understanding of basic economics and of the facts concerning recent federal deficits.  The Gazette only called for certainty in understanding what your tax bill might actually be, while falling short of the realization that higher taxes themselves may actually harm the economy. 

Because federal spending has exceed revenues for the past decade, any continuation of the 2001 tax cuts will make future deficits larger than if the cuts expired. So Congress must decide what’s more important — lower taxes or lower national debt.

Regardless of who wins on Nov. 2, the American people deserve to know what their tax liability for 2011 will be before the year starts. Getting tax legislation through the Senate and House by Election Day is the right thing to do.

I guess they just want businesses in Montana to be aware of the paddle headed straight for their backsides, rather than prevent the paddle from hitting them in the butt in the first place.  Maybe the Gazette editorial board should read their own news headlines showing Montana’s unemployment rate rising. 

Plus, their assertion that tax cuts caused the deficits ignores reality.  Tax rates were lowered, and revenues increased.  Nonetheless, sounds like we can all find some common ground here in at least telling Congress, as Senator Baucus would say, to “Giddy Up” on tax policy.   

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