POLITICAL POTPURRI

Posted in Quick Hits on January 23rd, 2012 by Ed

Three things that aren't long enough to justify a full post on their own can, if taken together, reasonably sum to one post.

1. I just finished my taxes. My effective federal tax rate, due to some divorce-related shenanigans, reached a personal all-time high: 9%. I usually clock in between 5 and 7 percent. I earn about 80% of the U.S. median income for an individual male taxpayer, and at 33 I've never hit 10% with my effective tax rate. Mitt Romney, the multimillionaire, has revealed an effective tax rate of about 15% (comparable, as the folks at Fox are all too eager to point out, to multimillionaire John Kerry's 13%). Remind me again where all of this tax rage comes from? I do not speak from experience, but I find it hard to believe that everyone who makes an amount of money between Romney (Assloads) and Ed (Dick) is paying 30%-plus in effective taxes. Yeah, yeah, Social Security and Medicare too – which are a great deal if you're a high earner (since they're capped) and for the rest of us they pay out far more than we will ever pay in. Property taxes? Kindly blow it out your ass; nobody forced you to buy a house, and owning a home entitles you to about 1000 different writeoffs and loophole deductions. I wonder how many of these 15% Flat Tax advocates realize that most Americans are paying that share or less already. The actual numbers in the tax code are irrelevant.

2. The Republicans in favor of Voter ID laws have finally found a clear-cut case of widespread fraud on which to hang their rhetoric: it appears that 953 dead people managed to vote in the South Carolina GOP Primary.

3. The best of the Gingrich jokes so far:

– Maybe America should say it has cancer so Gingrich will leave it.
– If Republicans are so uncomfortable with Mormonism, why did they vote for the guy with three wives?
– Every time he seems like he's down Gingrich rises up again, which is fitting for a man who appears to be made of dough.