Thursday, May 31, 2007

Counter-rotating Tax Spin

FactCheck(dot)org publishes another report, this time illustrating how everyone wants to spin the tax bottle to point where ever they want to plant a kiss. Both sides of the aisle know how to play the game and they do it so well...

The Democrats’ proposed 2008 budget is being spun by both sides. Democrats claim it will not raise taxes by even a penny, while Republicans say it will impose the largest or second-largest tax increase in history.

Obviously, the budget can’t be the largest tax increase in history and zero tax increase simultaneously. So which is it? The answer depends on a couple of questions: What constitutes an increase? And an increase compared with what?

The budget does not propose a new tax hike, compared with current law. It would, however, allow many of President Bush’s tax cuts to expire, meaning some Americans will pay more compared with what they pay now. We suspect that those affected will see that as a tax increase, contrary to the Democratic spin. But the Republican claim that it would be “the largest in history” is off base, too. Measured by the yardstick most economists favor, it's not even in the top 10.

The spin surrounding the Democrats’ proposed budget brought to mind a classic optical illusion in which the same picture could be seen as either a duck or a rabbit. One side of the aisle saw an aggressive tax-increasing duck; the other saw a benevolent budget-balancing bunny.

Go to the link and see how this works. I'm not going to waste any more blog space on a variety of ways to spin horse shit into Egyptian cotton. This is why there are so many skeptics among the electorate.

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