The perception of unfairness is spread fairly evenly across income groups--though their reasons may differ. More than half of those who make less than $50,000 a year said it’s unfair, and more than six in 10 of those who make more than $50,000 felt that way.According to The New York Times’ ever-readable Paul Krugman, that majority is correct. As he writes in his column today, Bush deceived the American public when he asserted during the 2004 presidential race that “most of the tax cuts went to low- and middle-income Americans.” In fact, explains economist Krugman, “about 32 percent of the tax cuts went to the richest 1 percent of Americans, people whose income this year will be at least $341,773. About 53 percent of the tax cuts went to the top 10 percent of the population.”
In fact, unhappiness with the tax system was spread fairly evenly across income groups, age groups and education levels.
A majority of people said the middle class, the self-employed and small businesses pay too much in taxes, the poll found.
Equating the Bush White House’s deceptions about tax distribution with its myriad deceptions about the Iraq war, Krugman concludes:
Again, the point isn’t merely that the Bush administration has squandered the budget surplus it inherited on tax cuts for the wealthy. It’s the fact that the administration has spent its entire term in office lying about the nature of those tax cuts. And all the world now knows what I suspected from the start: an administration that lies about taxes will also lie about other, graver matters.So, how do all those middle-class Americans who voted for Bush under the mistaken belief that they would be benefiting from his tax cuts, feel now?
READ MORE: “Taking Care of Bush’s Base,” by Georgia10 (Daily Kos).