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JFK vs. Biden on Taxes

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  • JFK vs. Biden on Taxes

    I liked JFK and would have voted for him if he had not been killed.

    I'm interested in how the Democratic Party has changed over the years and I haven't gotten very far in my research. It appears that the Democratic Party has gone further and further to the left.

    "ATR today released a video showing the tax policy contrast of President John F. Kennedy and current Democrat nominee Joe Biden."

    This is an analysis of JFK and Joe Biden on taxes.

    https://www.atr.org/jfk-vs-biden-taxes

    Quotations in the video are as follows:

    JFK: "Such a bill will be presented to the congress for action next year. It will include an across the board, top to bottom cut in both corporate and personal income taxes."

    Biden: "Guess what, if you elect me your taxes are going to be raised not cut."

    JFK: "Corporate tax rates must also be cut to increase incentives and the availability of investment capital."

    Biden: "I would raise the corporate tax." "Raise the corporate tax rate from 20 to 28 percent."

    JFK: "For all these reasons, next year's tax bill should reduce personal as well as corporate income taxes. For those in the lower brackets who are certain to spend their additional take-home pay, and for those in the middle and upper brackets, who can thereby be encouraged to undertake additional efforts and enabled to invest more capital."

    Biden: "I'm going to double the capital gains rate to 40 percent." "So every single solitary person, their capital gains are going to be treated like real income and they are gonna pay 40% on their capital gains tax."

    JFK: "To achieve these greater gains, one step above all is essential. The enactment this year of a substantial reduction and revision in federal income taxes."

    Biden: "Guess what? First thing I'm gonna do is repeal that Trump tax cut. Oh not a joke."

    For details on JFK's tax-cutting policies, see the book JFK, Conservative authored by Ira Stoll.

    Also note the 2012 Wall Street Journal op-ed written by Amity Shlaes, excerpted below:

    Heller's successful plan to combat the recession of the early 1960s was the Kennedy-Johnson tax cuts, which pushed the unemployment rate below 5% and the growth rate above 5% from 2%. Crucially, the administration's marketing pitch didn't talk about "fairness" but about competition. In the 1963 State of the Union Address, for example, Kennedy spoke about obstacles that "undercut our efforts to compete with other nations." He called "one step, above all, essential" to solve the problem: "the enactment this year of a substantial reduction and revision in federal income taxes."

    Heller and Kennedy recognized that taxation (not only growth) is all about competition. Cities compete with cities, counties with counties, states with states, and nations with nations. These natural experiments run in real time.

    Click below to watch the video:

    There also is a book that I have not read:

    https://www.amazon.com/JFK-Conservat...ords=ira+stoll

    "A startling reconsideration of John F. Kennedy’s record and achievements

    John F. Kennedy is lionized by liberals. He inspired LBJ to push for landmark civil rights laws. His “New Frontier” promised new spending on education and medical care for the elderly. His champions insist he would have done great liberal things had he not been killed by Lee Harvey Oswald.

    But what if we judge him by the lengthy record of his actual political career, in historical perspective? What if this hero of liberals was, in fact, the opposite of a liberal?

    As Ira Stoll convincingly argues, by the standards of both his time and our own, John F. Kennedy was a conservative. His two great causes were anticommunism and economic growth. His tax cuts, which spurred one of the greatest economic booms in our history, were fiercely opposed by his more liberal advisers. He fought against unions. He pushed for free trade and a strong dollar. And above all, he pushed for a military buildup and an aggressive anticommunism around the world. Indeed, JFK had more in common with Ronald Reagan than with LBJ.

    Not every Republican is a true heir to Kennedy, but hardly any Democrats deserve that mantle. JFK, Conservative is sure to appeal to conservative readers — and will force liberals to reconsider one of their icons."

    Have any of you compared JFK's policies to Joe Biden's?




  • #2
    Context is important.

    Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Revenue_Act_of_1964

    The United States Revenue Act of 1964 (Pub.L. 88–272), also known as the Tax Reduction Act, was a tax cut act proposed by President John F. Kennedy, passed by the 88th United States Congress, and signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson. The act became law on February 26, 1964.
    ...
    The Office of Tax Analysis of the United States Department of the Treasury summarized the tax changes as follows:[1]

    • reduced top marginal rate (on income over $100,000, roughly $848,000 in 2021 dollars, for individuals; and over $180,000; roughly $1,527,000 in 2021 dollars, for heads of households) from 91% to 70%
    • reduced corporate tax rate from 52% to 48%
    • phased-in acceleration of corporate estimated tax payments (through 1970)
    • created minimum standard deduction of $300 + $100/exemption (total $1,000 max)

    © Copyright Original Source

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by CivilDiscourse View Post
      Context is important.
      You're such a meanie!
      "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post

        You're such a meanie!
        I know.

        But it seems to me that just because someone champions cutting taxes from 91% to 70% it doesn't mean that they would necessarily align with someone wanting to cut it from 30% to 20% (or opposed to raising it from 20% to 30%).

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by CivilDiscourse View Post

          I know.

          But it seems to me that just because someone champions cutting taxes from 91% to 70% it doesn't mean that they would necessarily align with someone wanting to cut it from 30% to 20% (or opposed to raising it from 20% to 30%).
          "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Christian3 View Post
            Have any of you compared JFK's policies to Joe Biden's?
            Different era; 60 years is a long time.

            But generally speaking, JFK was more similar to Reagan than to Biden. Democrats today are (as you note) WAAAY off to the left.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by CivilDiscourse View Post
              Context is important.

              Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Revenue_Act_of_1964

              The United States Revenue Act of 1964 (Pub.L. 88–272), also known as the Tax Reduction Act, was a tax cut act proposed by President John F. Kennedy, passed by the 88th United States Congress, and signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson. The act became law on February 26, 1964.
              ...
              The Office of Tax Analysis of the United States Department of the Treasury summarized the tax changes as follows:[1]

              • reduced top marginal rate (on income over $100,000, roughly $848,000 in 2021 dollars, for individuals; and over $180,000; roughly $1,527,000 in 2021 dollars, for heads of households) from 91% to 70%
              • reduced corporate tax rate from 52% to 48%
              • phased-in acceleration of corporate estimated tax payments (through 1970)
              • created minimum standard deduction of $300 + $100/exemption (total $1,000 max)

              © Copyright Original Source

              Context is indeed important. The fact is that in 1964, there were a lot more deductions available to claim than now. I remember my dad doing taxes and adding up all the interest from ALL loans, not just mortgage, and you got a deduction for state sales tax and state income tax, among others (that's all I remember off the top of my head). I would guess that the real rate paid by high earners with all the loop holes and deductions was never anywhere close to 91%.
              "What has the Church gained if it is popular, but there is no conviction, no repentance, no power?" - A.W. Tozer

              "... there are two parties in Washington, the stupid party and the evil party, who occasionally get together and do something both stupid and evil, and this is called bipartisanship." - Everett Dirksen

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Ronson View Post

                Different era; 60 years is a long time.

                But generally speaking, JFK was more similar to Reagan than to Biden. Democrats today are (as you note) WAAAY off to the left.
                Something President Reagan said started my research on this subject. He said: "I didn't leave the Democrat Party, they left me."

                I couldn't find where Reagan explained what he meant.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Christian3 View Post

                  Something President Reagan said started my research on this subject. He said: "I didn't leave the Democrat Party, they left me."

                  I couldn't find where Reagan explained what he meant.
                  That was pretty well known, and my Dad said the same thing. The Democrats used to be the "God and Country" party, but they started walking away from that long ago.
                  "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Littlejoe View Post

                    Context is indeed important. The fact is that in 1964, there were a lot more deductions available to claim than now. I remember my dad doing taxes and adding up all the interest from ALL loans, not just mortgage, and you got a deduction for state sales tax and state income tax, among others (that's all I remember off the top of my head). I would guess that the real rate paid by high earners with all the loop holes and deductions was never anywhere close to 91%.
                    Trump was the one who eliminated the deductions for state and local income taxes, just a few years ago. 2017

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by kccd View Post

                      Trump was the one who eliminated the deductions for state and local income taxes, just a few years ago. 2017
                      You made an untrue statement. He capped it to $10,000. Fact checks are your friend.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Cow Poke View Post

                        That was pretty well known, and my Dad said the same thing. The Democrats used to be the "God and Country" party, but they started walking away from that long ago.
                        Well it seems Joe Biden (a Catholic) is against the "God" party with his view of abortion.

                        The Catholic Churches view: The Catechism of the Catholic Church states: "Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law" (No. 2271).

                        I would think President Kennedy also a Catholic would be against abortion as well.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Christian3 View Post
                          Well it seems Joe Biden (a Catholic) is against the "God" party with his view of abortion.
                          Because the left has ZERO TOLERANCE for anybody having their own opinions with regard to abortion. They are clearly lying about being "pro choice" when you can't even make your own choice about such an important issue.

                          The Catholic Churches view: The Catechism of the Catholic Church states: "Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law" (No. 2271).

                          I would think President Kennedy also a Catholic would be against abortion as well.
                          Well, the Catholic Church was also against fornication and adultery - which didn't seem to be a problem to JFK.

                          About the closest anything I have found comes to an opinion on abortion by JFK was the statement “Now, on the question of limiting population: as you know the Japanese have been doing it very vigorously, through abortion, which I think would be repugnant to all Americans.”

                          "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            It makes a massive difference to the question of how the parties have changed whether you want to focus on social issues or economic issues.

                            The OP is about taxation, which is an economic issue, but there are some people in this forum who primarily value social issues (e.g. abortion etc).

                            I would say that the whole country gradually became more liberal on most social issues across the last 100 years. Both parties have moved on that, and it has been generally fairly linear. I'll ignore those for the rest of the post and focus on economics only.

                            On economic issues the story has been a lot more complicated. Both America and the wider Western world has had 3 major periods of economic ideas since WWII, and the US political parties have reflected this:
                            1. After WWII, the US had 5 very economically left-wing presidents: FDR, Truman, Eisenhower, JFK, LBJ. These reflected the economic thinking of the time that high-taxes were good and strong unions were good. The highest US income tax rate was at or above 91% from 1944 to 1963. FDR wanted to push it to 100% for any money earned over ~$400k per year in today's dollars. This was viewed as standard economic wisdom around the Western world and almost all Western nations had very high tax rates and very strong unions.

                            After the Oil Shocks and Stagflation of the 1970s, many economists felt the need to rewrite the textbooks on what was good economic policy. The conventional wisdom that high tax rates and strong workers unions were good were thrown out, and the idea that heavy government involvement in the economy was good was thrown out, and many economists began thinking that perhaps the opposite was better: That deregulation, low tax rates, and a free labor market (i.e. no unions) was the best. This led many Western countries in the 1980s to explore these new ideas. In the US it was called Reaganomics, in the UK Thatcherism, in my own country of NZ Rogernomics/Ruthanasia, after the politicians who implemented these revolutionary economic ideas.

                            2. After 1980, Western nations, including the US began introducing these revolutionary economic ideas. Cutting taxes. Deregulation. Union busting. Reagan led the way on these, and it was named Reaganomics after him. The sweeping changes he introduced had perhaps some pre-WWII parallels, but in terms of post-WWII policy they were utterly new. Under Reagan, the Republican party went far, far, far, to the right economically, compared to where it, and the country had been. Bill Clinton organized for the struggling Democratic party to follow suit in embracing the new economic ideas, thus taking it far far to the right economically of where it had been. By the end of the 1980s both parties were thus stunningly far to the economic right compared to where they had been two decades earlier - both now generally supported vastly lower tax rates, generally supported deregulation, and generally supported free labor markets and opposed union control of workplaces. Clinton called this 'triangulation' - his idea was that if he moved the Democratic party to the right he would keep all the previous Democratic voters but he might be able to win over some voters who otherwise would have voted Republican.

                            The 2008 Great Recession confused and disheartened economists in the same way the Oil Shocks and Stagflation in the 1970s had. Many came to believe that it showed the prevailing economic wisdom was wrong. Also 30 years worth of data from around the Western world of these new low-tax no-unions lots-of-deregulation policies in action showed they hadn't worked remotely as well as hoped. A major result had been a massive increase in inequality, but they hadn't delivered on the positive economic metrics promised. Big think tanks like the World Bank. the IMF, and the OECD, who had been crunching the numbers from all the Western countries were beginning to put out statements saying that the data showed that strong union membership and higher taxes were actually better economic policies.

                            3. 2009-2021 has been a period of indecision in the Western world and a period of diversification of views. Increasingly many people look to the 1945-1963 period as the golden age of America for the growth of the middle classes. There is no longer any strong belief that the low-tax deregulation and anti-union policies of the 1980s-2000s were worthwhile or positive. However, big businesses don't want to be taxed more and don't like unions, so their bribery of politicians and strong lobbyist industry opposes a return to the high tax rates of the immediate post-war period. The Republicans are currently sufficiently bribed to still support extremely low tax rates, but seem to have few other economic policies. The Dems seem to see that some sort of return to the 1945-1963 period policies would be a good idea, but they are being bribed too much by big business to be willing to actually commit to that, so their steps toward it are faltering and sporadic.


                            Most recently on the topic of taxation, Biden is proposing raising corporate taxes that were lowered under Trump, but not to as high as what they first were when Trump first took office. So Biden appears to be economically to the left of Trump but to the right of Obama on the topic. On this topic, Biden is not merely not remotely close to any sort of return to the 1940s and 1950s policies, he's even to the right of Obama, which would imply that the Dems are still moving even further to the right on economic policy on the issue of tax levels.

                            Biden recently said he was supportive of the Amazon workers unionizing, which is far more support for unions than Democratic leaders have shown for decades, but he seems unwilling to do anything legislatively to promote unions. So that seems an example of Dems looking to that post-war era and acknowledging it was good, but not having the guts to pass any policies that would take the country back toward that.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Christian3 View Post
                              Something President Reagan said started my research on this subject. He said: "I didn't leave the Democrat Party, they left me."
                              One thing that struck me when I read a biography of Reagan was just how much of a serial liar he was. I was shocked to find that one of the jobs he had was to provide radio commentary for a sports game he couldn't see, and he would make up the commentary about the game, elaborating on the plays with made-up details, and the only facts he would receive about the games was short updates coming in by the telegraph that he would turn into fictitious play-by-play accounts for his radio audience. He seems to have taken that willingness to lie forward when he entered politics and was known for telling his audience what they wanted to hear with false anecdotes that played into their fears and prejudices.

                              Given Reagan is (in)famous for throwing out the existing economic textbooks and pursuing the revolutionary new economic policies of Reganomics, it is pretty hilarious he would tell such a whopper of a lie as to pretend it was the Democratic party who had changed rather than him. Of course, by that point, he was just reciting speeches others had written, not writing them for himself. The question of why it was politically convenient for an administration that was changing a lot of stuff to pretend to be traditionalists has an obvious answer - to try and placate the people who were upset by the amount of change happening.

                              Comment

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