The guy that blogs here wrote a post that is excerpted here. He’s already taken it down because he got his ass handed to him for complaining. Apparently when you make a lot of money, you’re not supposed to complain about having it taken from you.
I’ve been assured that he’s flogging himself as we speak and preparing to wear a hairshirt for at least a month once he’s done.
We’ve also been assured by Paul Krugman that the rich hate Obama. The Good Professor cites no polls, because the polls actually show that the rich love the President only slightly less than black people. The wealthy people in my neighborhood and in my office never seem to tire of reminding me that we’re very lucky to have "such a wonderful President" (direct quote from yesterday).
Interestingly, the President is set to screw both of these groups, which are the last to continue supporting him. Blacks – low-income ones at least – will get screwed by the DREAM act and the rich will get screwed by the tax increases. I guess they probably deserve it for voting Democratic so uncritically.
Since the blogger took down his post, I thought I’d put up some quick thoughts on my financial situation. My wife and I make more than $250,00, but not by much. This means that we’re evil.
In truth, in DC it doesn’t mean that we don’t have to worry about money – though obviously our worries are less pressing than those that have been laid off.
If the tax increases go into effect, we’ll continue putting off a couple home improvement projects we’ve been hoping to do. At this point we’re waiting to see what happens. Obviously, this isn’t a big deal, but it would keep some people employed. If the tax cuts aren’t extended, I guess we’ll just be paying the marginal construction workers’ unemployment benefits instead.
Since we’re having a baby next month, we’ll also seriously consider having my wife stop working if taxes go up. Taxes on income in DC are very high (~9%, I think). We’re looking at day care costs of $1,500/month for an infant. We definitely make more money with her working, but she works at a law firm and the long hours may not be worth it if well over half her pay goes to taxes and day care. We’d drop out of the ranks of the "rich" – by a lot – if she stopped working, but our expenses would fall dramatically as well.
If we have another kid, she’d almost certainly stop working under higher tax rates. The elementary schools in our neighborhood have gotten usable under DC’s out-going Mayor. Who knows if this will reverse under the new one? If so, we’d probably have to move or give home-schooling a shot – even on our current two salaries, having a couple kids in private schools will be a stretch and DC public schools beyond elementary school (at this point) are not a serious option.
The original point of the now-deleted blog post is that people respond to tax rates by changing their behavior. Under lower tax rates, I will pay people to do home improvements and to watch my children while my wife and I work. Under higher tax rates, I won’t do home improvements and my wife will quit her job to raise our kids. This is reality. You might not like it, but no amount of shouting at bloggers will change it. You may be able to make people quiet, but the incentives remain . . .