I cut the taxes on everybody. I didn’t cut them. The Congress cut them. I asked them to cut them.
–George W. Bush, Washington, DC, 08/06/2004
The next time a Bush fan tells you how much they cut everyone’s taxes, remember this story…
Two years ago, William Stout lost his home in Allentown, Pa., to foreclosure when he could no longer make the payments on his $106,000 mortgage. Wells Fargo offered the two-bedroom house for sale on the courthouse steps. No bidders came forward. So Wells Fargo bought it for $1, county records show.
Despite the setback, Mr. Stout was relieved that his debt was wiped clean and he could make a new start. He married and moved in with his wife, Denise.
But on July 9, they received a bill from the Internal Revenue Service for $34,603 in back taxes. The letter explained that the debt canceled by Wells Fargo upon foreclosure was subject to income taxes, as well as penalties and late fees. The couple had a month to challenge the charges.
Yes, that’s right, ladies and gentlemen. While right wing patrons get tax breaks for taking their friends to lunch at the most expensive restaurant in town and calling it "business;" while the relatives of rich Bush supporters who get millions of dollars in free money through inheritance get to pay next to nothing; while Wells Fargo Bank gets to write off the mortgage as lost, and not pay taxes on it, and keep the house as an asset to sell later, for even more income; the IRS actually considers forgiven debt to be "income" and forces you to pay tax on that.
Are you getting how the system is rigged yet? the net result of 26+ years of right wing addiction to "tax cuts" has the net effect of substantial tax cuts on the rich, who didn’t need tax cuts in the first place, and increased punitive taxation on everyone else. Like I said; rich CEOs of large corporations pay no taxes on the "deferred" portion of their compensation, which in many cases is most of it. They are largely able to shelter most of their income from taxation altogether. Meanwhile, the average working person sees their taxes go up, as their income goes up, and the IRS finds more and more ways to sock it to the poor.
Imagine the relief this guy felt at having been relieved of the burden of this mortgage he couldn’t afford, because the Bush economy screwed him, only to be told by the government that the forgiven debt was, in fact, "income." Meanwhile, across town, a rich CEO’s kid gets $2 million dropped in his lap after his father passes away, and pays nothing.
That’s the tax system the Republicans have created for us, folks. They only reduced taxes on the very rich, raised your taxes and they call every gain you see in your life "income," while exempting most of the income received by the rich…
Feel good about that, do ya?