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ECONOMY: Samuelson presents no context

Letter by William F. Johnston, Tacoma on July 5, 2011 at 1:53 pm with 36 Comments »
July 5, 2011 1:53 pm

Robert Samuelson’s economic record is one of being seldom correct but always in agreement with Wall Street and those who brought us this current economic mess.

His most recent column (7-5) is a great example of how he presents his arguments out of context to “prove” his point.

He scolds the “liberal-reactionaries” for wanting to raise taxes on the rich. He whines, “The richest 10 percent already pay 55 percent of federal taxes” (of course he has not included Social Security or Medicare taxes) without mentioning the richest 1 percent of Americans have 50 percent of the wealth and more money than one-half of all Americans combined!

Next he flat out states, “Democrats won’t admit the need for major benefit cuts in Social Security and Medicare.”

Not true! Rather minor adjustments to the way taxes are collected and from who will easily “fix” the system. But again Samuelson’s buddies are the one who would take the hit.

Samuelson has made a career as a promoter and apologist for the current system of unfair taxation and greed driven economics. We don’t need him on the pages of The News Tribune.

Leave a comment Comments → 36
  1. concernedtacoma7 says:

    “unfair taxation”??? When 1/2 of Americans pay nothing, who are you referring to? I guess you are implying that the rich are being unfairly taxed.

  2. nwcolorist says:

    Once again we hear the politics of envy and class warfare complaining.

  3. Soundlife says:

    The rich pay the majority of the country’s taxes because they hold a majority of the country’s wealth.
    I personally believe that we need to get rid of the income tax all together and replace it with a national sales tax. An income tax simply places the burden on America’s lower middle class who can not afford the accountants to help them ‘beat the system.”
    A consumption tax would naturally put the burden on the rich as they spend the most money.
    Food should be the only item that is tax exempt

  4. klthompson says:

    Your point is?

  5. xx98411 says:

    “The richest 10 percent already pay 55 percent of federal taxes” (of course he has not included Social Security or Medicare taxes)

    Apple meet the oranges… the reason why he did not is where the taxes go…

    Federal Income Tax Withholding pays for the administration of the deferal government.

    Social Security and Medicare taxes pay for specific benefits.

    Three seperate pots and it needs to stay that way.

  6. Soundlife says:

    xx Social security & medicare have not been “seperate pots” since LBJ made their monies part of the general fund and used the money to fund his “New Deal” agenda.

  7. To concerned tacoma?? Where did you get that data that proves half of Americans pay no taxes? How about taxes on all purchases, cars, appliances, phone and light bills, sewer connections, building permits, shoes, hair cuts, shampoo, real estate. If you are not paying taxes on any of these items I want to know what planet you live on.

  8. Soundlife says:

    Republicans always scream for more tax cuts, even when their own economic experts call for a reality check.
    Ending the Bush era tax cuts for those making over $250,000 as our economy begins to recover from the current recession is only common sense.
    We also need the federal government to get real and begin to include the actual numbers in the budget instead of hiding them from voters.
    Social Security and Medicare expenditures need to be included in the budget and the anticipated future payments in these programs should also be budget items.
    Puting future required spending off the books explains why so many in the public remain ignorant of the true scope of the economic problems facing the country, and allow the slick talking politicians to keep getting re-elected to wreak their havoc.

  9. xx98411 says:

    wow I did screw up…

    Federal Income Tax, Social Security Tax and Medicare are three separate taxes that are to pay for two distinct programs and the funding of the federal government… some nimrod though it wise to dump everything into the general fund to assist in funding the federal government and all the wonderful programs it wants to give to the peoples.

    Apple meet the oranges… Federal income taxes need to be paid by every working citizen of this great nation.

    Social Security and Medicare need to be separate from the federal budget. They are suppose to be self-sustaining programs and if they are not… fix the program not raid the general fund nor tax the feces out of people to pay for a broken program.

  10. blakeshouse says:

    Just another socialist/neo marxist trying to play the class warfare/envy game that they have relied on for more yrs than I can count. Fortunately it has become SO blatant that even a blind moron can see it.
    the people are smarter than that and are seeing right thru the BS and are chomping at the bit to get rid of the worst socialist this nation has ever foolishly allowed into the peoples house. Wilson, and TR headed us down this road and it took many yrs to right the ship. Several more wanted to continue the trip to hell but the people refused to allow it. This last trip down socialist lane will finally come to its conclusion on 1-20-13 and then the country can and will become the nation it was meant to be again

  11. LarryFine says:

    “minor adjustments to the way taxes are collected and from who will easily “fix” the system”
    Really? I’d love to know where you gleaned that from…

  12. Considering history, the real history not the revised GOP version, how could any thinking, sensable human being think that the right has any grasp, understanding or even concept of an economy?
    History shows us that every time, every single time with out fail when the right wing is allowed unfettered and unchecked control of our economy we end up in a recession or a depression.
    Facts are subbern things and even the rightists have to admit that they can not manage an economy.
    Everything they hold near and dear is an abject failure. They know it, we know everyone knows it, yet they continue to lie to us and thmeseves hoping and wishing it isn’t true.

    Twice now they have brought the nation to it’s knees economiclly speaking, it’s long past time for all of us to admit to their failures, admit that they are working against, working hard against the recovery out of pure political gain, and to reject the GOP, it’s policies, it’s agenda and the party as a whole so we can regain America.

  13. TSkidmore says:

    Just amazing – the Republicons replying writing about “class warfare” – Socialism – and the put upon rich people. What Rot! The only class warfare has been against the working class who have seen their wages, benefits and quality of life drop continually since 1973. Anyone who thinks the U.S. is “socialist” has no idea what Socialism actually is. Major corporations pay little or no taxes – taxes are at the lowest level since the 1950’s – cutting taxes to the rich has done nothing to build the economy – this entire economic mess we are in is due to so-called conservative and neo-liberal economics. Samuelson is merely a mouth piece for a failed system. And it will come down unless jobs are restored and we know cutting taxes to the rich WILL NOT DO IT!!!

  14. Hows that ‘trickle down’ thingy workin for ya?

  15. The right will ‘re-define’ words by the hour if it suits them but they have a foam at the mouth fit over what they call ‘redifining’ the word marriage.


  16. concernedtacoma7 says:

    Skid- This is an example of what happens with large government intervention


    Let the markets work. Stop giving money away and devaluing the dollar. Stop the handouts; the Dems are making another generation of welfare babies, sucking off the teet for life.

    And those big companies getting tax breaks? How about BHO’s pals at GE? You cannot say this is a Republican issue. GM? Total scam.

    XTP- I have already proven, with a study, that dems know nothing about the economy. Anyone reading the comments in the TNT knows that without additional evidence.


  17. geeterpontiac says:

    Well said concerned.

    It is a shame well-meaning people have so little grasp of hos things really work.

  18. “XTP- I have already proven, with a study, that dems know nothing about the economy.”

    No, you have ‘proven’ is that you think OP-ED’s and phoney studies’ by hard right wing nuts are factual! LOL!

    As I stated, history proves which of us is correct and which is being led by the rightwing propaganda machine.
    Further more you very own statements above prove that you really haven’t a clue about the economy to wit,

    “And those big companies getting tax breaks? How about BHO’s pals at GE? You cannot say this is a Republican issue. GM?”

    Serioulsy? You clearly think that there are ‘left’ and ‘right’ wing companys and that somehow the tax codes are written to only give one or the other tax breaks!
    The GOP favors giving the rich more money….pure and simple..even you can’t deny that fact, now ask yourself this…….how is that working?
    Where are the jobs those tax cuts were going to create?

    You’ve proven something alright……

  19. Looks like we got a style change from TP.

    So I assume the Rich Democrats are giving their share (as determined by the wealth re-distributers) and they don’t want to keep anymore of their money than necessary.


    Keep making stuff up about how pure and clean the left is.

  20. concernedtacoma7 says:

    “Serioulsy? You clearly think that there are ‘left’ and ‘right’ wing companys and that somehow the tax codes are written to only give one or the other tax breaks!”

    Are you really that uninformed? So all industries pay the same rate? Or companies within an industry? Look at the breaks given to the 2 companies I already stated.

  21. TSkidmore says:

    “Concerned” – Seriously? Forbes and the Murdoch Street Journal? – the two biggest liars who backed every crooked move Bush – Wall Street and the Banksters made to get the country into this economic mess? Earth to “Concerned” – come in Concerned you are out of orbit!

    If you want a “good” and truthful conservative publication try The Financial Times or Bloomberg….I don’t always agree with them but I know I can get the truth.

  22. geeterpontiac says:

    Regardless of who you think at fault, this is a good read. Mead leaves no one untouched.

    If you have the time, read it. It is an excellent piece.


  23. LarryFine says:

    bla bla bla…

  24. Concerned7
    Why don’t you show us how these two companies get special treatment?

  25. concernedtacoma7 says:

    Bash the source, not the data. Typical leftie move.

    GM? The bond holders got screwed and the unions get a nice chunk of the govt check. Bankrupcy courts, established to handled cases like this, are sidetracked. Total scam.

    Also, they switch govt loans and BHO flies around on the taxpayers dime to brag about how he turned them around.

    GE? Look at how much taxes they paid last year vs profits.

    Like the last economic threads, I expect the lefties on this board to disappear. You are always proven wrong, never man enough to admit it

  26. harleyrider1 says:

    The homeless guy down the street – you know the poor one? Give him a bigger tax break becasue he will start a company that will hire many of you unenlightened commentators.

    The two guys that cut my neighbor’s yard – give them a tax break becasue I am positive they will hire 25-more guys right away.

    The lady that cleans my house – stop taxing her. She will in turn give millions to chairty.

    Tax only the rich, make them pay even more. They don’t do anything for this country or chairty.

    Really? People revealing their lack of education or understanding of economics by spewing this probably would have served on Casey Anthony’s jury.

    Flat tax – yes, we all pay the same. The fact that my neighbor drives a new car and I don’t, does not justify the governement taking more of his money. Oh, unless I lived in the Soviet union.

  27. Concerned,
    Look how much income tax any major American Corporation pay.

    32 Corporations Spent More On Compensation For Top Executives In 2010 Than They Paid In Income Taxes


    or try since you like Forbes:

  28. Well I think conserned and the other rightists have more than backed up my statement that the right hasn’t a clue about the economy, more than backed it up in fact.

    Couple their wild nonsense with history………

  29. Roncella says:

    xring, I seen the same reports from your post on Mr. Ed the farrrrr leftest on MSNBC last night.

    you really need to get away from Socialists like Mr. Ed and some others. Its no wonder your opinions are so wacky sometimes.

  30. And your ‘wacky’ far right facist opinions roncella?
    Should you get away from your facsit beck\limbaugh\hannity and who ever else is feeding you your nonsense?

  31. How about your hero rupert murdock (fox news) that is hacking into murder and terrorist victims cell phones to get a ‘scoop’ on the tabloids?
    You like that roncella?
    is that the media you want for this country because it’s where you boy is taking us, slowly but surely.
    Look at fox, it’s not legitimet news now, fine line for it to cross to be even more tabloid than it is now, where are you going to draw the line roncella?
    You like being lied to?

  32. Roncella says:

    xtp855, Are you telling me you trust and believe the idiots appearing on MSNBC and CNN and NPR and some other far left Cable Shows ???

    You can’t possibly be that naive, its just not possible, is it ????

  33. No I’m not telling you that roncella, but you sure seem to think that your far right BS is true and those that feed it to you are above reproach, so are YOU that naive?
    Thats not possible is it?
    Why is your spoon fed far right opinions better than the well thought out, well documented and backed up by truth and facts of those you disagree with?

    roncella if you or your buddies ever told the truth or had a true fact to back up your extremism you might have a leg to stand on, but as it is you are all telling lies and parrotting the GOP propaganda talking points.

    It comes down to truth and substance over your media propaganda, which is well documented to be lies at best.

  34. Roncela,
    Didn’t watch TV last night. I was busy reading the Christian Science Monitor (on line) and Al Jazeer English, the two most fair and balanced news sources.

  35. beerBoy says:

    harley – Nope, that isn’t what most of us are saying.

    Raising tax rates on the highest income levels is not to be accompanied by cuts on the lowest. But, it might help pay for those four wars…..

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