The nefarious payroll tax cut

Here are all the “enemies” of Social Security who are pushing this “regressive” idea. Maybe, just this once, we could give Obama the benefit of the doubt:

  • Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor, (Aug. 25, 2010): “But here’s an idea that might command everyone’s support: Eliminate payroll taxes on the first $20,000 of income.”
  • Noam Scheiber, The New Republic, (Oct. 29, 2010):One obvious basis for discussion here would be a proposal by Larry Lindsey, George W. Bush’s first White House economic adviser.Lindsey has spent the last 20 months urging a two-year halving of the payroll tax for both workers and businesses.”
  • Ezra Klein, Washington Post, (Sept. 3, 2010): “The White House is considering a push for hundreds of billions of dollars in new stimulative spending, focusing on business tax cuts including a temporary cut in payroll taxes. In part, this is good policy. In part, it’s necessary policy.” Klein has also supported a payroll tax cut more recently (Sept. 10 and Nov. 3, 2010).
  • John Podesta, President and CEO, Center for American Progress (Nov. 7): The question is whether [the President] can offer the Republicans something in exchange. I think one of the ideas that — that he could substitute for tax cuts for the very wealthiest Americans is perhaps a payroll holiday, which the Republicans have endorsed, which would actually create more jobs.
  • Laura Tyson, Former CEA Chair to President Clinton on Face the Nation (Sept. 5, 2010): “I think that’s correct. I think that we already have in place the credit. The credit can be extended or could be extended into a partial payroll tax holiday.”
  • Matt Miller, Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress, in his Washington Post Column (Sept. 8, 2010): Ask any economist or businessperson what kind of tax cut would be the biggest boost to job creation and the answer is clear: a cut in payroll taxes, because it would directly reduce the cost of employment. Ask any social justice champion which tax is the unfairest tax of all and the answer is clear: the payroll tax”
  • Arianna Huffington Interview (Oct. 11, 2010): “I mean no dramatic bold proposals are going to come out of Washington of the kind I am suggesting in the book like the payroll tax holiday,huge infrastructure projects…”

10 thoughts on “The nefarious payroll tax cut

  1. Hasn’t it occurred to anyone that the payroll tax reduction is another trick like the sunset provision for the Bush tax cuts?

    The people who want to destroy Social Security will have MORE ammunition. It’s a crisis! It’s going to fail in 30 years, instead of 35 years!

    Carolyn Kay

  2. The payroll tax reduction is on social security taxes that we taxpayers fund for our retirement…this move is to destroy social security & try to turn it into ‘welfare’ status, then down the road the government will say it cannot ‘afford’ it. I agree with Carolyn Kay, it is a trick.

  3. I also agree with Carolyn. I asked about this last night and I’m suspicious.

    Also, Susie, were you joking around when you said “Maybe, just this once, we could give Obama the benefit of the doubt.”

    Just this once? What the hills have people been doing for the past 4 years if not giving Obama the benefit of the doubt?

  4. i gotta say susie, it is one fuckin’ weird day when you’re defending obama.

    I think it’s a trick too. I’ve learned not to distrust your instincts, but still… this sounds awfully fishy. especially considering the POTUS has social security cuts on his agenda.

  5. The SS payroll cut will be paid for out of general revenue.
    It’s not a trick. They’ll just take the money from another pot of taxpayer-provided loot. Simple. SS will be funded as usual and the difference is going to trickle into out pockets. So go out and buy that sammich, that pizza, that pair of shoes. Think of all the jobs that trickle of cash will create! Meanwhile, be happy for what you have. As Obama said today, Social Security used to be for just widows and orphans — be thankful for what you’ve got, you ungrateful serfs, or the oligarchs will twist the rope a little tighter!

  6. But youv’e gotta know, if the GOPers like it and Obama likes it and the democrats are chafing at it, it has to suck.
    Go Bernie Sanders! Block this biatch….

  7. In the abstract those comments are reasonable. In the context of the Catfood Commission and the unanimous opinion of the Very Serious People about cutting Social Security, I’ll go with Mark Thoma:

    Mark Thoma: “That endangers Social Security funding — relying on general revenue transfers sets the system up for cuts down the road — and for that reason I would have preferred that this be enacted in a way that produces the same outcome, but has different political optics. That is, leave the payroll tax at 6% on the books and keep sending the money to Social Security, and fund a 2% tax “rebate” out of general revenues. The rebate would come, technically, as a payment from general revenues rather than through a cut in the payroll tax, but in the end the effect would be identical. But the technicality is important since it preserves the existing funding mechanism for Social Security even if the taxes are permanently extended.”

    And with your comment about the tax holiday being a real “sand trap” for Social Security. Second time today, sorry.

    But I’m still with you on Trumka

  8. Suze, I’m sorry, but Obama won’t get the benefit of the doubt from me on this issue. He’ll have to do a complete 360 to gather any support at all for the remainder of his one-term-presidency. Pass the tequilla………….

Comments are closed.