Rep. Martha McSally supports Trump’s tax cuts for Plutocrats plan

Our Representative Martha McSally continues to stand by her man Donald Trump, and has adopted his socioparthy for lying about taxes.

The Arizona Daily Star published a report that is no doubt stenography from a McSally press release, wherein the only “news” made is that McSally supports Trump’s tax plan (which is actually an outline that has not yet been written into a bill). McSally: Trump’s tax proposal would help local businesses, middle class:

U.S. Rep. Martha McSally signaled her support Tuesday for President Trump’s tax proposal, saying it represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to simplify the country’s tax codes.

But … she stressed the proposal is still in the most nascent of stages as lawmakers wrestle with core concepts.

So once again McSally supports a bill not even knowing what is in it because the GOP leadership has only one issue that truly matters to it and to its campaign donors, massive tax cuts for their Plutocrat masters. “Let’s get thisfucking thing done!”

She outlined her goals for tax reform, saying she wants to help the middle class with tax cuts, help small businesses grow, simplify the entire tax code and reset the tax code so that the United States can compete globally for new and growing businesses.

Well, this may be her goals, but they are not the goals of the GOP leadership nor her man, Donald Trump. The tax proposals discussed to date would achieve none of McSally’s asserted goals. So by supporting this “nascent” bill that would not accomplish anything she claims to want, McSally’s actual goals must be something else, i.e., being a loyal servant to her Plutocrat masters who contribute big bucks to her campaign.

Goldman Sachs predicts only minor boost from Trump’s tax cuts:

The White House says the U.S. economy is going to be vastly better off after slashing taxes, but just about everyone else says the impacts will be modest, especially for the middle class.

This isn’t a liberal versus conservative debate. This is a White House and top GOP leaders versus pretty much everyone else debate.

America averaged about 2 percent growth a year for much of the recovery under President Barack Obama.

* * *

The vast majority of economists — on Wall Street, at big corporations and in academia — forecast just 2.1 to 2.25 percent growth after tax cuts, hardly an economic renaissance.

Goldman Sachs, the Wall Street bank that supplied some of Trump’s top economic advisers, keeps telling its clients to expect a “modest” impact from the Trump-GOP tax plan.

Here’s how Goldman put it in a research report last week: “Overall, the research literature appears to suggest that tax cuts can have modestly positive supply-side effects, though some studies find no effect,” Goldman wrote.

* * *

Economists at Goldman Sachs concluded that shareholders — the people who own stock in a company — typically get most of the benefits of tax cuts, at least in the first few years. Down the road, workers may see some uptick in wages, but it depends on whether businesses actually take the extra money from tax cuts and invest in more factories and technology. Economists are skeptical that will happen, especially if the tax plan ends up adding to the U.S. debt.

Former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers says The Trump administration’s tax plan is an atrocity:

The Trump administration’s tax plan is not a plan. It is a melange of ideas put forth without precision or arithmetic. It is not clear enough to permit the kind of careful quantitative analysis of its expected budget costs, economic effects and distributional implications that precedes such legislation in a serious country.

It is clear enough, however, to demonstrate that the claims of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn and Council of Economic Advisers Chair Kevin Hassett are some combination of ignorant, disingenuous and dishonest.

Hassett, whose job is to stand up for rigorous apolitical economic analysis, had the temerity last week to accuse the Tax Policy Center — staffed by many of the most distinguished tax analysts in the country — of issuing “scientifically indefensible” “fictions.” He and his colleagues should look in the mirror.

I have strong disagreements on tax policy with Republican economists such as Greg Mankiw, Glenn Hubbard and Martin Feldstein and with Treasury alumni such as Nick Brady, John Snow and Hank Paulson. Nothing I have ever heard or read from them seems absurd or dishonest in the way that almost everything coming out of this administration does.

We know enough to say that a tax-reform plan along the lines of the administration’s sketch would not substantially increase economic growth, would blow out the budget deficit and would make the United States an even more unequal place.

The administration pushes the idea that somehow cutting the corporate tax rate will be a huge spur to investment. It is certainly possible that with a lower tax rate accountants will locate more corporate income in the United States, but a big spur to investment seems unlikely. With after-tax long-term interest rates well below 2 percent, the stock market sky-high and businesses able to write off investments immediately, capital costs have never been lower. True, there is much cash parked overseas. But almost all the companies that have done so also have cash hoards in the United States that they have chosen not to invest. The first-order effect of a Trump administration “territorial system” that renounced a U.S. tax claim to overseas corporate income would be to encourage relocation of productive activity to tax-haven jurisdictions, slowing U.S. growth.

* * *

What about the budget deficit? For tax cuts to pay for themselves, as Mnuchin sometimes asserts would happen, they would have to massively increase growth. Because this is unlikely, they would bloat the budget deficit at a time when we should be preparing for the next downturn, for rising entitlement costs and potentially for the need for increased national security spending.

But it’s worse than this. Many in the administration’s orbit have expressed the belief that the Federal Reserve’s quantitative-easing program has inflated asset prices by absorbing long-term bonds. If this logic is correct, increasing the supply of bonds to fund the large increase in deficits that tax cuts would entail should have a significant depressing effect on asset prices and the economy. Any possible supply-side benefits of the tax program have to be weighed against this damping impact.

Finally, there is the question of fairness. Those secure in their beliefs do not seek to depublish studies by apolitical civil servants. There is little doubt among serious economists that — as explained in a 2012 paper that has mysteriously vanished from the Treasury website — the immediate impact of corporate tax cuts is to help corporations and that the vast majority of corporate shareholding is concentrated among those at the top of the income and wealth distribution. There is the further point that in defending fairness the administration ignores its proposed estate-tax repeal, which affects only the top two-tenths of a percent of the population.

* * *

And Mnuchin and Hassett’s arguments about investment depend on the false premise that domestic investment will be spurred by corporate tax cuts. Anyone in doubt about such fairness questions should just note that the administration is not willing to do what all previous Treasuries have been willing to do: present a revenue and distributional analysis of its plan.

The world’s finance ministers and central bank governors recently met in Washington for the annual International Monetary Fund-World Bank meetings. I.M.F. Cautions Against Tax Cuts for Wealthy as Republicans Consider Them:

The International Monetary Fund delivered a blunt warning to international policy makers ahead of the fund’s annual meeting this week: Governments risk undermining global economic growth by cutting taxes on the wealthy.

The message, while aimed broadly at all developed nations, carries particular resonance in the United States as the Trump administration and Republican lawmakers push a tax plan that critics say will exacerbate income inequality by reducing taxes for the richest Americans.

In a report issued Wednesday, the fund emphasized that flatter tax rates across income scales and lower rates for the highest earners could exacerbate a troubling trend toward growing inequality in the United States and around the world.

President Trump’s agenda in many ways defies these recommendations . . . The White House is currently pushing a proposal that tax experts warn would cut taxes for the wealthiest Americans by lowering the top rate, by eliminating the estate tax and by doing away with the alternative minimum tax, which imposes a higher rate to ensure the wealthy are not exploiting loopholes.

* * *

Perhaps most importantly, the framework tax plan includes several measures that analysts say would amount to windfalls for wealthy Americans, even though Mr. Trump has said the wealthy will not benefit from the plan [remember, Trump is a pathological liar: everything he says is a lie because he is compelled to lie].

* * *

An analysis of the framework proposal by the Tax Policy Center in Washington, which made some assumptions about the unspecified details in the Republican plan, found that the gains from the proposal would be heavily concentrated among the very rich.

Maurice Obstfeld, the International Monetary Fund’s chief economist, said the fund was waiting to see the details of the plan but said it should generate revenue rather than increase the deficit, which would help the United States invest in infrastructure and assist its aging population.

* * *

Other economists were more pointed about the effects of Mr. Trump’s tax proposals.

“Those kinds of regressive taxes lead to the creation over time of increasingly more disparate wealth and income inequality,” said Joseph E. Stiglitz, a professor at Columbia University. “So rather than reducing that kind of regressivity, his proposals, as far as one can say, are going to make things worse.”

So how are Republicans going to sell this tax cuts for Plutocrats plan to the MAGA fools who bought Trump’s populist uprising against Wall Streetc elites con job? By doing what the GOP has always done: lie their asses off. As Paul Krugman accurately notes, The G.O.P. Is No Party for Honest Men:

According to a new CBS News poll, almost 60 percent of the American public believes that the current Republican tax plan favors the wealthy. Some people see this number as a sign that the plan is in trouble; I see it as a sign that Republican lies are working far better than they deserve to.

For the plan does indeed favor the wealthy — overwhelmingly, undeniably. It’s shocking that as many as 40 percent of Americans don’t realize this.

It’s not difficult to see how the plan is tilted toward the very top. The main elements of the plan are a cut in top individual tax rates; a cut in corporate taxes; an end to the estate tax; and the creation of a big new loophole that will allow wealthy individuals to pretend that they are small businesses [i.e., Martha McSally’s “small business” campaign contributors], and get a preferential tax rate. All of these overwhelmingly benefit the wealthy, mainly the top 1 percent.

There are also some measures affecting middle-class families, but they’re relatively small change — and some of them would actually raise taxes. Over all, the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center estimates that by 2027 almost 80 percent of the gains from the plan would go to the top 1 percent, just 12 percent of the gains to the middle 60 percent of Americans — and that more than a quarter of middle-class families would actually see their taxes go up.

So the question about this plan isn’t whether it favors the wealthy — it does, to an outrageous extent. The questions we should be asking instead are why Republicans are pushing this so hard, and how they can hope to get away with it.

Bear in mind that there is essentially no popular constituency demanding tax cuts for the rich. By a large margin, the general public wants to see taxes on corporations and the wealthy go up, not down; even Republicans are divided, with only a modest margin in favor of cuts.

Yet tax cuts for the rich are the overriding objective of the modern G.O.P. They were the principal motivation for the attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act, since that would also mean repealing the high-income taxes that pay for it; from Republicans’ point of view, depriving millions of health care was just a minor side benefit. And now tax cuts for the wealthy are pretty much the only thing left on the G.O.P.’s legislative agenda.

In fact, it’s becoming increasingly clear that the hope for tax cuts is the main thing keeping congressional Republicans in line behind Donald Trump [lookin’ at you Martha]. They know he’s unfit for office, and many worry about his mental stability. But they’ll back him as long as they think he might get those tax cuts through.

So what’s behind this priority? Follow the money. Big donors are furious at missing out on the $700 billion in tax cuts that were supposed to come out of Obamacare repeal. If they don’t get big bucks out of tax “reform,” they might close their pocketbooks for the 2018 midterm elections.

* * *

But how can an administration that pretends to be populist, to stand up for ordinary (white) working people, sell such elitist policies?

The answer is a strategy based entirely on lies. And I mean entirely: The Trump administration and its allies are lying about every aspect of their tax plan.

* * *

I’m talking about flat-out, easily refuted lies, like the claim that America has the world’s highest taxes (among rich countries, we have close to the lowest), or the claim that estate taxes are a huge burden on small business (almost no small businesses pay any estate tax).

Nor do I mean that there are just one or two big lies. There are many — so many I literally don’t have space to so much as list them in this column. In a long blog post this past weekend I tried to provide a systematic list; I came up with 10 major Republican lies about tax cuts, and I’m sure I missed a few.

So, politically, can they really get away with this? A lot depends on how the news media handles it. If an administration spokesperson declares that up is down, will news reports simply say “so-and-so says up is down, but Democrats disagree,” or will they also report that up is not, in fact, down? I wish I were confident about the answer to that question.

One thing we know for sure, however, is that a great majority of Republican politicians know perfectly well that their party is lying about its tax plan — and every even halfway competent economist aligned with the party definitely understands what’s going on.

What this means is that everyone who goes along with this plan, or even remains silent in the face of the campaign of mass dissimulation, is complicit — is in effect an accomplice to the most dishonest political selling job in American history.

The professor is talking about lying enablers like you, Martha McSally.

And maybe the Arizona Daily Star should find someone who can do economic analysis to challenge Martha McSally on her tax lies, and not just publish stenography from her press releases.

24 Responses to Rep. Martha McSally supports Trump’s tax cuts for Plutocrats plan

  1. Nice pic (and petition) at link…

    McSally Take a Stand‏
    @RepresentMeAZ

    Hey, @Cosmopolitan, we made a cover for you to illustrate how bad @RepMcSally is for women. But we ran out of space.

    https://twitter.com/RepresentMeAZ/status/921547985011355648

  2. North Of The River

    Bush gave me $300 check,then next year Obama gave me a $200 check…….but then Obama then stopped giving me those checks….so now Obama owes me a couple grand of money!!!!
    Pay up Obama!!!!!!! You saw my sign in Phoenix!!!

  3. For Sure Not Tom

    I see Steve Bannon was in town throwing some White Nationalist support behind Chemtrail Kelly.

    Arizona is a weird place.

  4. “America averaged about 2 percent growth a year for much of the recovery under President Barack Obama. / The vast majority of economists — on Wall Street, at big corporations and in academia — forecast just 2.1 to 2.25 percent growth after tax cuts, hardly an economic renaissance.”

    Either your author writes very badly, or I don’t understand what he wrote, but these two quotes ran one right after the other. If it says what it says, then the 2% growth under Obama was wonderful thing, but 2.1% to 2.3% under the tax plan is dismal performance. Why the difference?

    “According to a new CBS News poll, almost 60 percent of the American public believes that the current Republican tax plan favors the wealthy.”

    I was surprised it was only 60% given the constant litany of complaints from liberals and an enabling media. I think that demonstrates that the stranglehold liberals have enjoyed in the media is slipping…and badly slipping…which is a good thing.

  5. Let’s be clear. Lucas won a Nobel prize for rational expectations.

    As Obama went from a 15% probability of being president in 2008 to a 70% probability, the stock market weakened and collapsed, the economy weakened and collapsed.

    The rational expectations of an Obama presidency, validated in hindsight, caused the Great Recession. People don’t stay on the train till it goes over the cliff, they look down the tracks, see the coming disaster and get off immediately.

    • “The rational expectations of an Obama presidency, validated in hindsight, caused the Great Recession.”

      This is revisionism at a level we don’t often see.

      • For Sure Not Tom

        The economy tanked under a Republican president and Thuckhead can’t admit it.

        After the black guy took office the economy went up, and up, for 7 years.

        It’s race based revisionism.

      • Was the collapse of the economy and the stock market in the fall of 2008? Yes, look at the following 8 years of non-stop regulation, welfare loading and tax increases. Plus, just look at what the economy did.

        Is the market rational now? We can’t be sure, we will only know looking backwards as to whether Trump can justify this sky-high market. But, the market did an excellent job of forecasting results under Obama, so maybe it is intelligent again and growth will hit 4%.

        If you are certain of the outcome, you can make millions selling options. Tell us all how that goes.

        • For Sure Not Tom

          Well, Thuckhead, leading up to the 2008 recession, did Bush cut taxes?

          Yes!

          Did they ignite the economy?

          No!

          Bush even sent me a check for 600.00 dollars. In fact, he sent nearly everyone a check for 600.00 dollars.

          Did it ignite the economy?

          No!

          And when Obama allowed the tax cuts to expire, did the economy crash?

          No!

          And if you were a smart fellow, Thuckleberry, you’d give Obama credit for that, because he signed the American Taxpayer relief act, restoring many of those cuts.

          You’d give Obama credit for cutting taxes and keeping the recovery alive, based on your thinking.

          If you were a smart fellow, Thuckhead, you’d credit Obama’s stimulus package as saving the economy. You can see the economy recovering as the stimulus was dispersed.

          Because, again, if you were a smart fellow, Thuckhead, you’d give Obama credit for that recovery, because half of that 900 million dollar stimulus package was tax breaks.

          If you were a smart fellow, you’d give credit to the black guy for saving the economy with tax breaks.

          But you can’t admit that the economy started to recover about a year after Obama took office and it kept growing and it’s still growing.

          But you can’t even give Obama credit for tax cuts, because you’re kind of a racist.

          • “But you can’t even give Obama credit for tax cuts, because you’re kind of a racist.”

            Tom, is there anyone who opposes you that is not a racist? You remind me a lot of Joseph McCarthy who saw communists everywhere, except with you it is racists that you see everywhere. Or they are traitors. Or they are unpatriotic. That’s kind of sad…

          • Taxes are important but not exclusive. Welfare and Regulation are also critical.

            Bush’s false compassion led him to increase food stamps from $18 billion to $80 billion and Disability from $80 billion to $225 billion.

            This trapped millions of people in a suicidal hellhole of alcoholism, drug addiction and dependency.

            You morons blame our entrepreneurs for this failure by postulating that your envy and jealousy are disabling afflictions shared by the poor. They are not.

            Our entrepreneurs would have been glad to continue to rescue the poor as they had from 1980 to 2000.

            The poor outgained the rest of the nation from 1980 to 2000 then they ran into Bush’s welfare trap. (See our Tax Lawyer’s fancy little New York times curve)

            Also, the Bush tax cut was temporary bringing in our good friend rational expectations again. Part of Obama’s destructiveness upon entry to the presidency was the knowledge that he would never agree to extend the Bush tax cuts.

    • For Sure Not Tom

      Ya’ basic.

    • And Thaler just won a Nobel Prize for his work in Behavioral Economics, showing the exact opposite point of view from Lucas – that people are subject to and make decisions rooted in cognitive biases and other deviations from what is predicted under models of rational expectations.

      • Another Nobel Laureate, Vernon Smith, did research right here at the University of Arizona, not 1000 yards from where I am typing this, demonstrating that under fairly general conditions, markets composed of supposedly ‘rational’ agents can (and often do) generate irrational exuberance and bubbles, something which would be precluded under the efficient markets hypothesis.

        So, if we’re citing Nobel Laureates, we can do that, but the research does go both ways.

        • You are very correct, for all we know, the stock market is based on an illusion and will evaporate tomorrow. However, that is not the way to bet. No less than Greenspan screamed that the market was suffering from “irrational exuberance” when it was at 6,600 not that long ago. Now it is at 23,000 plus.

          We will only know looking back if the market is rational. However, assuming that it is rational something economically explosive is about to happen. Very akin to when the market was at 700 and popped 70 points in one day marking the beginning of the Reagan revolution.

          Can you imagine the market moving 2,300 points in a single day?

          The market has now gone up $5.0 trillion just since election day and it was already at an eye-popping 23.6 trillion.

          Implicit in that level is a forecast for better than 5% growth.

          That seems inconceivable. It means that huge amounts of people will be sucked out of our colleges, off of disability, out of our high schools into the job market and that likely illegal immigration will kick back into high gear.

          Hang on to your hats, something big is about to happen.

  6. What a spew parade. Starting with the notion that you will need massive growth to pay for the tax cut. Who cares? After 8 years of Obama stagnation, you would have us believe that 1.8% growth, the average of Obama’s last two years, is the new normal.

    If we kick in with 3% growth the plan is more than self-justifying based on overall deficits, not just federal cash deficits, including the unfunded liabilities of Social Security and Medicare.

    3% job growth versus your 1.8% would move the unfunded liabilities by tens of trillions of dollars.

    The stock market hit an all-time high of $28.6 trillion on the day Trump announced the tax outline. Implicit in that stock market value is a forecast of over 4% economic growth.

    “but just about everyone else says the impacts will be modest, especially for the middle class.”

    Not all the investors in the stock market. I will go with them any day over your 41 economists being quoted by the Congressional Budget Office.

    • For Sure Not Tom

      It was 8 years of Obama job growth and economic recovery.
      It was 8 years of Obama job growth and economic recovery.
      It was 8 years of Obama job growth and economic recovery.
      It was 8 years of Obama job growth and economic recovery.
      It was 8 years of Obama job growth and economic recovery.

      Say it, you lying sack of crap.

      You just can’t get your racist ass to admit that the black guy who ran the country for 8 years inherited a nightmare from the white man before him.

      Thuck-Head.

      • These clowns would rather eat worms than acknowledge Obama’s accomplishments. Especially their president’s crotch worm.

        • For Sure Not Tom

          I looked up “crotch worm”.

          It’s been listed on Urban Dictionary since 2009.

          I learn new things here. 🙂

          • It’s in the Urban Dictionary? It was just a sperm of the moment thought that just came to me when I was writing the comment. :O)

      • What an unbelievably racist comment. And, so deceptive. After 8 years of Obama stagnation, our birth rates have plummeted and Social Security is on the verge of bankruptcy.

        After Reagan, our birth rates, which had been plunging under Carter, shifted up and the bankruptcy of Social Security was pushed back 30 years.

        Read your comment and look yourself in the mirror.

  7. douchebag will replace her when mccain flys up to that big aircraft carrier in the sky.

  8. As usual Twitler barks and the good Congresswoman responds with “Zu Befehl Mein Groppenfuhrer!”

    And surely the Pima County Democratic Party can do better than the carpetbagging Ann Kirkpatrick to replace her?