Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Puh-leez, Madame L!

Dear Madame L,

It's me again (Not One of Them), and I wish you would tell the whole story. In fact, I believe Mitt Romney was correct in saying that about 47% of the American people don't pay income tax. 


Not One of Them (Still)

Dear Not One of Them Still,

So, you pay income tax. So does Madame L. So do (let's see, using mathematics, as former Pres. Bill Clinton advised us all to do), some 53% of Americans. 

And now that the fact-checkers have had their say, Madame L finds that they agree that Mitt Romney was correct in that part of his fund-raising spiel to the rich people in the home of the well-known and possibly degenerate (if having sex parties at your swimming pool makes you degenerate) and certainly extremely rich guy. 

According to the non-partisan Tax Policy Center, actually about 46% of Americans don't pay taxes. Read the whole article for a fascinating discussion of why that is, including the fact that some of them (as Madame L wrote yesterday) are now, finally benefiting from retirement and the years and years of taxes they have paid into the system. Yes, Madame L believes they ARE entitled to the Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security benefits they have earned over a lifetime of work.

About 83% of those who pay no income tax live in households with income under $33,542. Madame L wants to know what Mitt Romney expects these people to do? How much tax would he like them to pay? Would he like them to stop receiving Medicaid for their medical issues and/or food aid for their children? If he's upset about Obama's 15-point lead with these people, what can he offer them instead?

For a complete and nuanced and balanced treatment of this issue, please check out the facts and figures in Ezra Klein's Wonkbook discussion. 

Madame L realizes that Mitt Romney said all that disparaging stuff about half the American public because he was begging for money from the 1-percenters, but that doesn't make Madame L feel any more kindly toward Mr. Romney.  Nor does the fact that the following day Mitt Romney told a group of Latino-Americans a whole different story. And these facts both contribute to the chance that she would ever vote for him (currently, and always, at 0%). 


Madame L

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