The Wall Street Journal put together this helpful infographic showing how recent tax changes will affect the typical American tax payer.
One of those inevitable year-end traditions is Lake Superior State University's List of Banished Words, led this year by the currently ubiquitous "Fiscal Cliff", followed by the related political/economic shorthand "Kick the Can Down the Road". Of course, "YOLO" is on the list (as I predicted), along with "Double Down" (surprisingly NOT in reference to the KFC menu item), "Job Creators", "Spoiler Alert", "Bucket List", "Guru" (didn't Mike Myers kill that word in 2008?), the marketing-speak "Superfood", the twitter-driven verbed noun "Trending", the oxymoronic "Boneless Wings" and this year's pick for 'word that has lost all meaning': "Passionate". Of course, Your Mileage May Vary (YMMV, an acronym not yet banned, but give it time...)
There's been a lot of talk in the US media about the "Fiscal Cliff" and the "Grand Bargain" What are they?
The "fiscal cliff" is a confluence of three legal changes taking effect Jan. 1: the expiration of a payroll-tax cut, the expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts, and the advent of mandatory spending cuts known as "sequestration."Fiscal Cliff 101: 5 Basic Questions Answered. What's Happening: Fiscal Cliff Explained [more inside]
"Used to be that the idea was 'once every two years voters elected their representatives.' And now instead it's 'every ten years the representatives choose their constituents.'"
Obama won Ohio by two points, and Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown won by five, but Democrats emerged with just four of Ohio’s 16 House seats. In Wisconsin, Obama prevailed by seven points, and Democratic Senate candidate Tammy Baldwin by five, but their party finished with just three of the state’s eight House seats. In Virginia, Obama and Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Tim Kaine were clear victors, but Democrats won just three of the commonwealth’s 11 House seats. In Florida, Obama eked out a victory and Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson won by 13 points, but Democrats will hold only 10 of the Sunshine State’s 27 House seats. The Revenge of 2010: How gerrymandering saved the congressional Republican majority, undermined Obama's mandate, set the terms of the sequestration fight, and locked Democrats out of the House for the next decade. It's not a new problem. But if the Supreme Court guts the Voting Rights Act, it could get a whole lot worse. And the electoral college may be next. (What's gerrymandering, you ask? Let the animals explain. Meet the Gerry-mander. Peruse the abused. Catch the movie. Or just play the game. Previously.)