A question of fairness



Dear Editor:

A recent commentary by Phil Grant [“Tax cuts are good for the economy,” Feb. 8] is classic textbook trickle-down economics. While not a recognized economic model, it is overly used, highly politicized and strongly supported by conservatives. Where’s the proof? The arguments for and against it have a 40-year history.

While I think his logic is flawed, relying on baseless expectations and unproven results, he would certainly say that’s my liberal bias. Fair enough. But what isn’t Mr. Grant focusing on?

The benefit from the tax bill for those households making $50,000 to $75,000 per year (generally middle class) is expected to be $870 or 1.6 percent change in after-tax income. Compare that to those making $500,000 to $1 million. The difference is $21,240 or 4.3 percent change in after-tax income. The higher your income, the higher the percent change.

Put another way, the tax bill delivers about 80 percent of benefits to households making over $900,000. I suppose Mr. Grant thinks that fair.

The individual income tax changes last until 2025 while the corporate tax rates will be permanent. Fair?

The most important issue not addressed by Mr. Grant is who pays for these generous tax cuts? The answer is highly politicized. Conservatives say they expect economic growth will ultimately pay for it. If they truly believed that then they wouldn’t be calling for cuts to Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security; don’t bet on that.

There is a growing concern that the approach taken to the latest tax bill is nothing short of class warfare.

Phil Neal

Haborside

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