Starting in 2001, the Bush Administration enacted a series of tax cuts that have, to date, cost roughly $2.5 trillion. Nearly half of that went to the top 5% of wealth holders and income earners in the US and, as Responsible Wealth Project Director Mike Lapham explains, the way we see it, that's just "not good policy."
Lapham: "We don't think that it was the right choice [in 2001], and we think it's inexcusable that [the Bush] tax cuts are continuing now. They were set to expire in 2010 and we're trying to make sure through [our] Tax Fairness Pledge that they do actually expire."
Dylan Ratigan: "There's a huge difference between the tax rate for those who are wealthy and invest money and those who are poor and have to work for their money. We tax workers at vastly higher rates than we tax the wealthy in this country on the belief that lower taxes on the wealthy will incentivize them to invest in our future, when we know all we've done is create a giant gambling parlor in New York [...]. How do you deal with that?"
Lapham: "To the extent that tax cuts help create jobs at all, which is debatable, certainly tax cuts for lower-income people are much more effective [...] because they don't put [their money] into savings accounts or send it off shore or whatever else. The other thing is, government spending is much more effective at creating jobs [than tax cuts to the wealthy]. There's a very good study out by Peter Orszag and Joseph Stiglitz, recently, that covers all of that."