Wednesday, September 21, 2011

GOP's different rules for The Rich and teachers

President Obama unveiled his deficit reduction plan this week, which includes about $1.5 trillion in new taxes on the rich. Predictably, Republicans decried the effect that the proposal would have on "job creators". They say that, by raising taxes and decreasing the wealthy person's take-home pay, they will dis-incentivize those efforts and investments of the person. They are absolutely correct in their analysis, which is based on simple supply-and-demand. If you decrease the "price" (take-home income), you get less quantity of the "good" (investing decisions, running companies, etc.) supplied.

Unfortunately, they seem to be unable to apply the same logic to teachers, firemen and police officers. By stripping union rights from these groups, and generally opposing efforts by the Obama Administration to use federal funds to keep them from being fired, Republicans are dis-incentivizing workers who provide these vital services. Just as the economy would be damaged by having fewer "job creators", it will also be weakened by having fewer good teachers.

In determining how to close the deficit, we must, through our democracy, decide how much each of us will contribute in addition to what we already do. Republicans want to exempt a segment of society from contributing, despite their being the segment most able to afford it.

In my next post, we'll discuss the ridiculousness of calling Obama's tax policy "playing to his base" and "giving up on compromise".

2 comments:

NWest said...

I fully support raising taxes on people making > $1 million a year. Most of them vote for Democrats and are always talking about how they wouldn't mind to have their taxes raised. Perhaps we could write a special provision just for Warren Buffet himself?

As for public employee unions, the problem is that a government institution is fundamentally different from a private corporation. Even the progressive icon FDR recognized this.. "All Government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service. It has its distinct and insurmountable limitations when applied to public personnel management. The very nature and purposes of Government make it impossible for administrative officials to represent fully or to bind the employer in mutual discussions with Government employee organizations"

PoliticalDoctor said...

I absolutely agree with FDR's assessment that, given no profit motive, public officials are less likely to be good negotiators than private owners. But to say that the problem with our budgets is teachers and cops making too much is ridiculous.