FOX News graphic detailing President Bush's $16,000 tax credit for married folks



  • I just happened to be in my company's break room when FOX news was reporting on the details of President Bush's announced tax cuts and rebates to "boost the economy."  While the reporter being interviewed talked about the tax cuts, a graphic came up with the following:

    INDIVIDUALS: $800

    MARRIED COUPLES: $16,000

    A few seconds later the graphic was explained by the reporter as $800 for individuals and sixteen-hundred for married couples.  Dang, I liked that slide better!  A female coworker in the room  with me said, "Dang, I need to find myself a husband!"

    Anybody happen to see that, or get a still of that video clip?  A quick search on Foxnews.com turned up nothing but surely somebody got a clip of that!  What a great WTF, although I guess really it was just a glorified typo.
     



  • So, wait, isn't it also kind of a WTF that they would separate INDIVIDUALS and MARRIED COUPLES since either way each person gets $800.00?

    Unless of course a "COUPLE" means more or less than the usual two.



  • @Siloria said:

    So, wait, isn't it also kind of a WTF that they would separate INDIVIDUALS and MARRIED COUPLES since either way each person gets $800.00?

    Unless of course a "COUPLE" means more or less than the usual two.

     You're forgetting a zero.  800 * 2 = 16 hundred, not 16 thousand.



  • @Siloria said:

    So, wait, isn't it also kind of a WTF that they would separate INDIVIDUALS and MARRIED COUPLES since either way each person gets $800.00?

    Unless of course a "COUPLE" means more or less than the usual two.

    Married couples file a single tax return, so it may be pertinent to distinguish.  If their definition of "individual" meant "person listed on tax return", it would include children as well.

    I still wish I could include my dog as a dependant.



  • @Siloria said:

    So, wait, isn't it also kind of a WTF that they would separate INDIVIDUALS and MARRIED COUPLES since either way each person gets $800.00?

    Unless of course a "COUPLE" means more or less than the usual two.

    The tax system already puts individuals and married couples into different categories.  If the graph only specified that individuals get 800$ and didn't mention couples at all, it would be incomplete.



  • @Siloria said:

    So, wait, isn't it also kind of a WTF that they would separate INDIVIDUALS and MARRIED COUPLES since either way each person gets $800.00?

    I assume you haven't ever filed a US income tax return? There are four categories that a person can fall into: "Single", "Married filing jointly", "Married filing separately", and "Head of household". If you are filing under "married filing jointly", you and your spouse are filing a single tax return between the two of you, and the form would contain a $1600 credit. For any of the other categories, it's one tax return per person, and each return would contain a $800 credit.



  • @Siloria said:

    So, wait, isn't it also kind of a WTF that they would separate INDIVIDUALS and MARRIED COUPLES since either way each person gets $800.00?

     

    For couples who routinely pool their finances, it's a convenience; saves you the trouble of doing math at the same time you're trying to listen to them discuss other aspects of the issue.

     



  • @bassaf said:

    I just happened to be in my company's break room when FOX news was reporting on the details of President Bush's announced tax cuts and rebates to "boost the economy."  While the reporter being interviewed talked about the tax cuts, a graphic came up with the following:

    INDIVIDUALS: $800

    MARRIED COUPLES: $16,000

    A few seconds later the graphic was explained by the reporter as $800 for individuals and sixteen-hundred for married couples.  Dang, I liked that slide better!  A female coworker in the room  with me said, "Dang, I need to find myself a husband!"

    Anybody happen to see that, or get a still of that video clip?  A quick search on Foxnews.com turned up nothing but surely somebody got a clip of that!  What a great WTF, although I guess really it was just a glorified typo.
     

    I have a better one. A few years ago, when the fashionable subject on cable news was the threat of dirty bombs, MSNBC put up a PowerPointish graphic of bullet points, listing the possible substances that can be used to build a dirty bomb. Among them were:

    • Plutonium
    • Strontium
    • Sezium

    That's right, Sezium. I guess high school educations aren't a requirement over at MSNBC. Nor the ability to look up a word (or periodic table) online, or in any basic reference book.

    Like you, I dearly wish I had a capture of it.



  • As a married lower middleclass software developer, I'm curious as to what the income cap is for these tax cuts, and if we get to apply them to our 2007 tax filing.

     $1600 means I'd about break even instead of having to pay this year.

    EDIT, from some news article:

    Robert Greenstein, director of the Center on Budget and Policy
    Priorities, said the administration's plan would bypass or only give
    partial help to more than 40% of tax filers with the most modest
    incomes. Families of four making less than $40,950 would get partial
    help or nothing at all, he wrote.

     Typical Bush policy. Cut taxes to the people who can afford to pay them, and screw the poor folks.

     Good thing I'm the head of a household of 4 people and I make more than 41k.


     


     



  • @bassaf said:

    A female coworker in the room  with me said, "Dang, I need to find myself a husband!"

    TRWTF is you didn't take the hint 😉 



  • @Jonathan Holland said:

    As a married lower middleclass software developer, I'm curious as to what the income cap is for these tax cuts, and if we get to apply them to our 2007 tax filing.

     $1600 means I'd about break even instead of having to pay this year.

    EDIT, from some news article:

    Robert Greenstein, director of the Center on Budget and Policy
    Priorities, said the administration's plan would bypass or only give
    partial help to more than 40% of tax filers with the most modest
    incomes. Families of four making less than $40,950 would get partial
    help or nothing at all, he wrote.

     Typical Bush policy. Cut taxes to the people who can afford to pay them, and screw the poor folks.

     Good thing I'm the head of a household of 4 people and I make more than 41k.

    Quotes like this are somewhat misleading.  The reason poor people might not get the full $800 tax credit is because, get this, they pay less than this in taxes!   An equally valid way to say what this guy said would be to say that the janitor got a 100% income tax credit, but the lawyer only got a 0.05% income tax credit.
     

    The credit isn't meant to be a transfer payment (like, say the Earned Income Tax Credit), but to lower the amount you pay in taxes.  If you were a family of 4 making only $41K, you probably aren't paying income taxes, and may be getting money back already.   The point is to keep more money in the private sector, where hopefully these people will spend their money buying things, helping the economy to grow a bit faster.  In reality, they mostly use it to pay debt (that's what happened last time, at least), so there isn't as much of a stimulus as is commonly thought.  Either way, giving more money to someone who already isn't paying just takes would require the government to tax or borrow it from someone else, thereby not causing any additional stimulus.



  • people paying off debts does help the economy.  It frees up bank capital to invest in businesses and other investments. Other than that, you are right on.   How the fuck would someone that pays $100-$200 in taxes get a $800 tax cut?

    Typical Bush policy?  No, typical moron response. 

     



  • @tster said:

    people paying off debts does help the economy.  It frees up bank capital to invest in businesses and other investments.

    I agree, but it's not the effect that cheerleaders of this sort of stimulus are trying to achieve.  They're hoping for an immediate up tick in consumer spending to spur those investments, which would presumably have a quicker visible impact.



  • @VGR said:

    That's right, Sezium. I guess high school educations aren't a requirement over at MSNBC. Nor the ability to look up a word (or periodic table) online, or in any basic reference book.

    Well, according to Vikipediya, Sezium means something in some other language.  I'm not sure what that says, but the word "element" is there, and some of the text look Arabic to me.  Maybe Sezium is what the terrorists call Cesium, in which case it's probably what they'd use to make a dirty bomb...
     



  • @tster said:

    people paying off debts does help the economy.  It frees up bank capital to invest in businesses and other investments. Other than that, you are right on.   How the fuck would someone that pays $100-$200 in taxes get a $800 tax cut?

    Typical Bush policy?  No, typical moron response. 

     

    They've been paying people with no jobs "earned income credits" for years. 
     



  • @medialint said:

    @bassaf said:

    A female coworker in the room  with me said, "Dang, I need to find myself a husband!"

    TRWTF is you didn't take the hint 😉 

    I tried that once in college, near graduation....

    Girl 1, 2, and 3 are talking about Girl 4 getting married.

    Guy next to me says "Man, you guys are all talking about marriage and stuff.  I'm still worried about finals."

    Me: "Screw finals.  I'm worried about having a job when I graduate."

    Girl 1: "We don't need jobs, just husbands."

    Me: "Wait, but you guys all have jobs.  But you need husbands.  And I need a job OR a spouse....."

     
    There were no takers.
     



  • @tster said:

    people paying off debts does help the economy.  It frees up bank capital to invest in businesses and other investments. Other than that, you are right on.   How the fuck would someone that pays $100-$200 in taxes get a $800 tax cut?

    Typical Bush policy?  No, typical moron response. 

     

     I made less than 41k last year, and I paid several thousand in taxes. It complete depends on how you file, if you are 1099 etc.

    That said, while I will directly benefit from Bush's tax cut, you have to realize that it is just a bandaid that will stimulate the economy falsely for a short period of time, considering that it will be funded by a 145 Billion BOND.

    The democrats will have to raise taxes to bail out the hole we are in when they take office next year, which will make people hate them, despite the fact that they are just trying to fix the problems of this disastrious presidency. Its a great political move for Bush right now. Makes him look good again, and the democrats look bad.

    Anytime you shuffle debt around to 'fix' the economy, you are just hiding the real problem.


     



  • @Jonathan Holland said:

    @tster said:

    people paying off debts does help the economy.  It frees up bank capital to invest in businesses and other investments. Other than that, you are right on.   How the fuck would someone that pays $100-$200 in taxes get a $800 tax cut?

    Typical Bush policy?  No, typical moron response. 

     I made less than 41k last year, and I paid several thousand in taxes. It complete depends on how you file, if you are 1099 etc.

    That said, while I will directly benefit from Bush's tax cut, you have to realize that it is just a bandaid that will stimulate the economy falsely for a short period of time, considering that it will be funded by a 145 Billion BOND.

    The democrats will have to raise taxes to bail out the hole we are in when they take office next year, which will make people hate them, despite the fact that they are just trying to fix the problems of this disastrious presidency. Its a great political move for Bush right now. Makes him look good again, and the democrats look bad.

    Anytime you shuffle debt around to 'fix' the economy, you are just hiding the real problem.

    You really have no idea how economics work.  Lowering taxes does make the economy stronger.  And it's not a temporary band aid.  If you need evidence look at the economy ever since Reaganomics was instituted.  Another interesting thing about government spending that you probably haven't though about, is that deficit spending is actually a good thing.  Not only has it propelled our economy to what it currently is (and by the way, our economy is currently extremely strong, especially in the long run), but most top economists think that one of Clinton's smartest moves was cutting back the surplus through tax cuts.  After a decade of insane growth in the economy the government had to much money, and Clinton and Greenspan purposefully decreased the surplus. 

    Furthermore, the national debt is actually not at it's highest right now.  (Well, to morons that measure the national debt in $ amount it is.  But people that know what they are talking about and measure it in proportion to the GDP it isn't).   And I hate to tell you this... but this tax cut will only become law if your precious democrats agree to it.


    BTW, I don't know why I said $100-$200, but the point still stands.  If you pay $2000 in taxes/year.  Is it really fair to give you a $800 credit?  Credits like this are notorious good to the poor and lower middle class while making no difference to the upper middle class or the rich.  For intance, for you(from what I gather) this will be about a 10%-20% tax cut (me too!).  But to my boss this will be more like a 2%-2% cut.  Not that he ends up with a huge amount more money than I do at the end of the year.  I made about $50,000 this year including some capital gains, and my total take home from that will be about $40,000 (using very rough numbers here and I live alone and have no Dependants).  But my boss and his wife both work and together make about $200,000/year.  So they end up paying crazy amounts of taxes and their take home will be more like 140,000.   But that's two people, so you can consider it's more like 80,000/person.   So even though they make 4x what I make, they only bring home 2x what I make. 



  • @tster said:

    @Jonathan Holland said:
    @tster said:

    people paying off debts does help the economy.  It frees up bank capital to invest in businesses and other investments. Other than that, you are right on.   How the fuck would someone that pays $100-$200 in taxes get a $800 tax cut?

    Typical Bush policy?  No, typical moron response. 

     I made less than 41k last year, and I paid several thousand in taxes. It complete depends on how you file, if you are 1099 etc.

    That said, while I will directly benefit from Bush's tax cut, you have to realize that it is just a bandaid that will stimulate the economy falsely for a short period of time, considering that it will be funded by a 145 Billion BOND.

    The democrats will have to raise taxes to bail out the hole we are in when they take office next year, which will make people hate them, despite the fact that they are just trying to fix the problems of this disastrious presidency. Its a great political move for Bush right now. Makes him look good again, and the democrats look bad.

    Anytime you shuffle debt around to 'fix' the economy, you are just hiding the real problem.

    You really have no idea how economics work.  Lowering taxes does make the economy stronger.

    So the U.S. economy is at one of its strongest points ever right now, then.

    Pay no attention to the newspaper behind the curtain! There is no mortgage crisis! There is no economic downturn! Everything is fine! Now go vote Republican, so we can complete the job of turning America into a theocracy.

    @tster said:

    And it's not a temporary band aid.  If you need evidence look at the economy ever since Reaganomics was instituted.

    BWAHAHAHAHAhahaha ha ha ha... You're kidding, right?

    Oh, wait, you're serious. You come from money, don't you? You must. Only someone who has never had to worry about paying the rent could possibly think Reaganomics was a good thing. It basically traded in a bunch of economic protections and long-term strategic spending for a short-term boost, which went bust even before Reagan even got out of office. (See, for example, a stock market graph for 1987-88.) If it weren't for the determined effort of Republicans to claim that vicious senile bastard Reagan as a messiah, nobody would ever think his economic policies were very good.

    @tster said:

    Another interesting thing about government spending that you probably haven't though about, is that deficit spending is actually a good thing.  Not only has it propelled our economy to what it currently is (and by the way, our economy is currently extremely strong, especially in the long run)

    HAHAHAHA hA ha ha... Seriously, man, you're killing me. Even the Bush administration is starting to make noises about us being in a recession (a conclusion most people came to a few years ago). Real wages adjusted for inflation have fallen 3 of the past 4 years. The average American is now in debt, and banks are starting to foreclose on houses at a rate which alarms even them. (Banks don't like to foreclose when it's a buyer's market.) We're busily funneling money to third-world countries to shave a few pennies on production costs (without, of course, lowering executive salaries), and sitting around assuring ourselves that they don't know how to engineer or write code, so it's okay. We did the same things with Japan and Korea. Our grandchildren will think of India and China as technological marvels.

    Anyway, back to your drivel:

    @tster said:

    And I hate to tell you this... but this tax cut will only become law if your precious democrats agree to it.

    They aren't my precious Democrats. They probably aren't the precious Democrats of the poster you were quoting. I hate to break it to you, since you don't seem to get out much, but the Democrats are a bust. They haven't really opposed anything significant in the last six years. All three of the frontrunners for the Democratic nomination either voted to invade Iraq or passed funding to stay there. (Hillary Clinton managed to do both, the others only avoided it by not being in office at the right times.) Quite frankly, the only people to whom the Democrats are precious are Republicans, because the Democrats prevent a third party from starting up to claim the left vote now that the Democrats have abandoned it.

    @tster said:

    BTW, I don't know why I said $100-$200, but the point still stands.  If you pay $2000 in taxes/year.  Is it really fair to give you a $800 credit?  Credits like this are notorious good to the poor and lower middle class while making no difference to the upper middle class or the rich.  For intance, for you(from what I gather) this will be about a 10%-20% tax cut (me too!).  But to my boss this will be more like a 2%-2% cut.  Not that he ends up with a huge amount more money than I do at the end of the year.  I made about $50,000 this year including some capital gains, and my total take home from that will be about $40,000 (using very rough numbers here and I live alone and have no Dependants).  But my boss and his wife both work and together make about $200,000/year.  So they end up paying crazy amounts of taxes and their take home will be more like 140,000.   But that's two people, so you can consider it's more like 80,000/person.   So even though they make 4x what I make, they only bring home 2x what I make. 

    Oh, the poor babies! Quick, let's all put in donations to get them a fruit basket! Clearly they deserve a much larger tax cut! Otherwise their conspicuous consumption might have to be reigned in slightly!

    During the immediate postwar years, which fruitcakes like you always consider to be the golden era of American economics, they would have paid much more than they do now. (Maximum marginal tax rate from 1951 to 1963: 95%; Maximum marginal tax rate now: 35%.) And people making less than you would have paid much less. And what did we get out of it? A big successful middle class, a space program, silicon valley... I'm not sure what we'll get out of our "tax the poor and pay Dick Cheney's friends" programs, but I doubt it'll be anything our descendants will be proud of. 

    Look, if you want to make greed your god we can't stop you. But stop pretending that a world which makes you rich will be good for everyone, okay?



  • @The Vicar said:

    @tster said:

    Lowering taxes does make the economy stronger.

    So the U.S. economy is at one of its strongest points ever right now, then.

    Pay no attention to the newspaper behind the curtain! There is no mortgage crisis! There is no economic downturn! Everything is fine! Now go vote Republican, so we can complete the job of turning America into a theocracy.

     It would probably be more appropriate to say that lowering taxes and beating the shit out of sleazeball investors and real estate speculators makes the economy stronger.  Unless you can show that previous tax cuts were responsible for jacked up real-estate prices and morons buying things they couldn't afford with crazy interest rates...

    Now, with respect to these tax credits.  I imagine they won't continue long-term.  One, maybe two years. Is $800 per person in one year going to have a noticeable benefit?


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