QUOTE OF DAY
Forbes: How Ordinary Americans Can Fight ObamaCare
The 2012 election ensured that ObamaCare will not be repealed anytime soon. But opponents continue to fight back. 26 state governments have declined to establish insurance “exchanges.” 40 lawsuits are still pending against various aspects of ObamaCare. Ordinary Americans may not be able to directly affect these battles. But they can play a key role in the all-important battle of the “narrative.”
WSJ: Baby, You're a Rich Man
Who's rich, anyway?
Congress and President Barack Obama are struggling with that question as they wrangle over how to avoid the "fiscal cliff." If they can't reach a decision, tax rates will increase sharply for most Americans—both rich and not—and draconian spending cuts of $110 billion will kick in.
Overall, the top 1% of U.S. households have a net worth above $6.8 million or at least $521,000 in income, according to data from the Federal Reserve and the Tax Policy Center in Washington. The cutoffs for the top 5% are $1.9 million in net worth, or $209,000 in income.
MarketWatch: 5 fiscal-cliff effects on your wallet
As Congress continues working toward a deal that could avoid the fiscal cliff, consumers may want to consider what going over it could mean for their wallets.
The most talked-about impact, naturally, would be higher tax rates. (This fall, we estimated that taxpayers in the bottom quintile would see their bill increase by $412; the middle class, by $1,984. But experts say the cliff’s broad budget cuts affecting nearly all government agencies would have a trickle-down effect that would hit consumers in less expected ways in 2013 and beyond—some involving price hikes, others decreases.
The Atlantic: This Is How Much Your Taxes Will Rise If We Fall Off the Fiscal Cliff
Until or unless Congress actually does something, 2013 will be the year of tax increases. Big tax increases.
The fiscal cliff is a bit of a misnomer, but when it comes to taxes, the metaphor is apt. If all of the tax cuts, credits, and deductions set to expire at year end do in fact expire, incomes will fall off a tax cliff. Median earners will have 4 percent less in take-home pay in 2013 than they otherwise would; households making a million dollars or more would have 11.4 percent less.
Washington Post: Cliff Updates
Manchin introduces bill to ‘ease’ cliff.
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) has introduced a new bill that he says would soften the impact of going over the fiscal cliff.
It’s called the Cliff Alleviation at the Last Minute (CALM) Act, and Manchin says he’s not happy to author it.
“This is not a great plan, merely a better plan than going over the cliff,” Manchin said in a floor speech. “It should never have come to this.”
The measure would phase in the looming tax increases over three years, rather than all at once, and allow the Office of Management and Budget to pick which programs would be cut rather than having the across-the-board cuts contained in sequestration.