Just to get things straight — it is really not a fiscal cliff; it is more of a slope. The entity of the tax breaks and the spending cuts will not fully expire until ten years from Dec. 31.
Even though it is all over the news, I am not worried. I am not a “jumper,” but I do not think going over it would be the worst thing our country has ever endured.
I obviously would like to avoid the $600 million in tax increases and spending cuts, but if Congress does not resolve the issue before we ring in 2013, the members should come to a decision shortly after. This is an issue our leaders will not leave looming.
If we do go over the cliff, I am confident America can survive. Our economy is extremely resilient.
While it is not ideal, we can bear it for a month or two while the nation’s lawmakers argue it out — the economy will not be permanently crippled. Our economy is constantly taking hits, from Hurricane Sandy, 9/11 and other recessions, but we have managed to come back into the black after each snag.
With a $16 trillion debt, such a shock might be what America needs to finally adopt fiscal discipline. But the weight of our deficit should not be on the shoulders of the lower tax bracket citizens; those making $388,350 or more annually can afford to bear more on their shoulders.
While the entire country is involved in the fiscal cliff, and everyone will undoubtedly be affected, it is the republicans of Congress who will be the deciding factor.
If republicans decide to put country before party, the fiscal cliff will not be triggered. If our Congressmen could reach a bipartisan compromise and not be as concerned with popularity and re-election, creating a plan that’s good for America would be achievable.
The president is taking a hard line by asking for $1.6 trillion in his negotiations. Even though we might go over the fiscal cliff and disrupt the economy, I think President Obama will continue to fight for higher taxes for the wealthy and keep the middle class in mind after that.
The Buffet Rule is a plausible option. The rule — invented by Warren Buffet, billionaire founder of Berkshire Hathaway, a Fortune 500 company — would force anyone making $1 million or more annually to pay at least a 30 percent tax rate.
It also includes a clause for the ultra-rich, meaning taxes would be progressive. In other words, the more you make, the more you pay. Less affluent Americans would pay less in taxes, allowing them more funds for necessities.
It is inconceivable that millionaires should pay the same tax rate as middle class Americans. Those in the highest tax bracket can afford to give more, while those falling into lower categories do not have such high incomes to pay the same high tax rates and still have money to live off of and invest.
If we expect the economy to improve, the millionaires of America will have to be a big part of it.
Since spending cuts need to be made, entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare should be revisited and overhauled.
Wealthy individuals that do not require the funds granted from Social Security and Medicare should receive a lesser amount. The amount of money received each month should be given on a needs basis. The United States would save a bundle by not handing out money to the upper class when they do not require it.