- Ohio university quiz implies atheists are naturally smarter than Christians
- Rep. Henry Cuellar on border crisis: ‘Playing defense on the one-yard line’
- Activists vow to occupy fast-food restaurants to get higher pay
- Rep. Luis Gutierrez: Senate Dems wary of immigration politics
- Summer camp for 1 percenters: Sushi, limos and shopping at FAO Schwarz
- Colorado gun crackdown law found to be built on faulty data
- Hank Aaron steps to fundraising plate for Democrat Michelle Nunn
- ISIL terrorists blow up burial site of Jonah, vow more of same
- Impeach Obama, say 35 percent in new poll
- Taliban yank 14 Shiites off bus, bind and shoot them on Afghan road
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Obama’s historic spending
Question of the Day
President Obama has successfully diverted discussion of the unanswerable question of fairness away from a frank conversation about spending (“Obama’s checkmate,” Commentary, Thursday).
Under the Obama administration, outlays have grown to 24.4 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) from a post-1950 average of 19.8 percent. Outside of World War II, never have we spent so much for so long. Spending under Presidents Bush and Clinton averaged 19.8 percent of GDP. Compare spending 24.4 percent with tax collections that, except for World War II and the dot-com boom (when they peaked at 20.6 percent), have never been higher than 19.7 percent, regardless of tax rates. Tax receipts during Mr. Obama’s tenure are just 15.4 percent of GDP, below the 17.9 percent average since 1950.
Instead of an honest policy debate, there is a false narrative that the Bush-era tax cuts were unfair when they actually made rates more progressive. The top 1 percent under George W. Bush paid 37 percent of personal income taxes (up from 32.75 percent under Mr. Clinton), the top 10 percent paid 68.4 percent under Mr. Bush (up from 63 percent under Mr. Clinton). The bottom 50 percent paid 3.23 percent under Mr. Bush (down from 4.36 percent under Mr. Clinton).
It would be wise to focus on the government’s unsustainable spending rather then an illusory solution in the name of tax fairness.
ADAM B. DAVIS
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
TWT Video Picks
Second- and third-stringers eye 2016 if front-runner stumbles
Get Breaking Alerts
- Michelle Obama says money in politics is bad, asks donors for 'big, fat check'
- Presidents of Honduras, Guatemala blame U.S. for border children crisis
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- EDITORIAL: Detroit's water 'spigot bigots'
- Hamas rejects Kerry's call for cease-fire; Fears grow others could join fight against Israel
- Obama orders Pentagon advisers to Ukraine
- PRUDEN: The Democratic-wannabe mice under Hillary Clinton's feet
- Obama takes aim at 'corporate deserters'
- Crime-ridden U.S. cities differ on ways to fight gun violence