Also, I gotta give props to marknau. I disagree with him, as I have in other threads, but he's showing a willingness to admit when an area is discussed that he's not as knowledgable about, as well as willingness to recognize when he's made too-large rhetorical leaps- something many of us, myself included at times, aren't as willing to do. I still don't agree with much of what he's saying, but I sure do respect how he handles himself here.
That said, I'm with BentPenguin on this one- the idea that corporations shouldn't be taxed is silliness to my thinking, but that's a tangential issue to the posted link. Now, while the AMT may have needed some reform (its original intent was to close the loopholes of wealthy [non] taxpayers, yet many heard the stories of some former dot-com employees with worthless options still owing huge tax bills on money they never saw) this action is so bold in its corruption and pandering to campaign donors that it's frankly astonishing. The AMT repeal was a much-sought Republican measure well before Sep. 11th; too often these days we're seeing examples of legislation proposed ostensibly to deal with "the current crisis" but really just to ram through legislation favored from long before that fateful day. If the Reps want to pass an AMT repeal, call a spade a spade- don't play these cheap rhetorical games and exploit human tragedy to better your biggest donors' profit margins.
Besides, calling it an "incentive" program to benefit the common man is either an enormous cynical lie or a horribly deluded notion of how the economics work. Businesses will not pay/hire employees or make spending decisions that are unprofitable (unless they're poorly run to begin with, i.e. Amazon.com), so giving them huge tax breaks/refunds/subsidies isn't going to make them hire even one more worker that they wouldn't have anyway- refunding money they'd already written off as spent for the last 15 years makes it just "found money" that will find its way into stockholder hands and not into new investments they weren't planning on making anyway. By comparison, of course, giving a middle-income family an extra $300 does at least stand a very good chance the money will be spent promptly, stimulating the economy with new consumer demand. However, giving GM $800M isn't going to make them expand production and hire new workers- right now, only increased demand will do that, according to the basic precepts of the free market. That this AMT repeal is also retroactive- further belying the "incentive" notion- and funded from basically the SS surplus paid for out of the aforementioned "common man's" pocket... well, that's absolutely repellant.posted by hincandenza at 7:05 PM on November 1, 2001
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