And The Poor Get Poorer
A new study by the Manhattan Institute revealed the new carbon emission rules released last week by President Barack Obama's Environmental Protection Agency will hurt poor people the most.
"The lowest fifth of income earners," the report says, "spend the greatest share of their incomes on energy (defined as natural gas, electricity and gasoline and motor oil). Earners in the lowest income quintile spend 24 percent of their pre-tax income on energy."
Although the top 20 percent of earners will spend more total dollars for their energy, they'll actually pay only 4 percent of their income for it.
And, the report concludes, the rules changes won't do much to stop the global warming Obama and the EPA are concerned about.
"The pain inflicted on the poorest Americans will not reduce global emissions," the Manhattan Institute report said. "The inevitable rise in utility prices will disproportionately affect those with low incomes, a group that has been continually hurt by the slow economic recovery. If, as Mr. Obama has stated before, 'inequality is the defining challenge of our time,' it makes no sense to push regulations that hurt the poor the most and the wealthiest least."
The Taxman Cometh
Remember candidate and then President Obama's pledge that no one making less than $250,000 will see "any form of tax increase."
"Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains tax, not any of your taxes," he said.
Well, according to the Congressional Budget Office, he owes at least 4 million people an apology. That's how many people will have to pay the Obamacare individual mandate non-compliance tax in 2016.
The office's report notes that Americans will be liable for the tax as part of their annual tax-filing process. "Among the uninsured people subject to the penalty," it says, "many are expected to voluntarily report on their tax returns that they are uninsured and to pay the amount owed."
Most of those liable for the tax, according to the report, are low to middle-income households.
Things Go Better With Kochs
Those horrible, mean, hateful Koch brothers, who are favorite targets of Democrats for their funding of Republican causes, have continued a long association with the United Negro College Fund by donating $25 million to provide 3,000 merit-based awards to black undergraduate, graduate and post-doctorate students. The money also is expected to help fund 37 historically black colleges struggling with financial shortfalls.
It's not likely to end the brothers' demonization by Democrats, who are supported by blacks in overwhelming majorities, but it may provide a little more flesh to the bones of the Kochs, who have given to a variety of conservative, free market and libertarian causes, according to Breitbart.
Taxed Out Of House And Home
Austin, the liberal capital city in conservative Texas, is a fan of higher taxes, according to a report in the Austin American Statesman. So much so that supportive pushers of higher taxes can't afford the city anymore.
"I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better," said artist Gretchen Gardner. "But now I can't afford to live here anymore."
The artist's tax burden on her 1930s downtown bungalow jumped to $8,600 this year.
"I'm at the breaking point ... I'll protest my appraisal notice, but that's not enough," she said. "Someone needs to step in and address the big picture."
She's apparently not the only Austinite in over her head. The average market value for homes has risen 12.6 percent in 2014, resulting in an 8 percent rise in taxable value.
The Way To Be Free, Man
Actor Morgan Freeman, not known to be a closet conservative, said the media makes too much about any connection between race relations and wealth distribution.
Asked last week by CNN host Don Lemon if race plays a part in wealth distribution, the actor replied, "No. No, I don't. Why would race have anything to do with it? Put your mind to what you want to do and go for that. It's kind of like a religion to me. It's a good excuse for not getting there."