Thursday, January 5, 2012

Bachmann Out, Obama's Youth Jobs Program, and Bad Boeing

Michele Bachmann has dropped out of the presidential race, much to the dismay of bloggers everywhere. Talking Points Memo has a great tribute to her.

Mitt Romney still hasn't released his tax returns, and is unlikely to. Why?

When Romney jokes that he’s been unemployed for years, he’s obscuring the fact that he’s still collecting millions of dollars of investment income, which is taxed at a much lower rate than it would be if he, like most taxpayers, took home a regular paycheck. He’s also obscuring the fact a great deal of that same income is only vaguely connected to his own underlying investments, and yet benefits from a key loophole in the tax code that allows him and other wealthy finance veterans to more than halve their effective tax rate.
In private equity, fund managers are typically compensated with both a fee (two percent of assets) and substantial share (20 percent) of the fund’s profits. Those profits are called “carried interest” and they’re classified as long-term capital gains, which are taxed at 15 percent — much lower than wage income, on which the top marginal rate is 35 percent.
In other words, even though he's making a lot of money, he's not paying as much in taxes as most middle-class people. It's something that he'd rather not call attention to.

Good news for the economy: U.S. companies added 325,000 jobs in December.

In the "free market bites" or "you expected loyalty?" category, Boeing is closing its Wichita Kansas plant. They're moving the work to their Washington state plant. This has resulted in predictable screaming by the Republicans in the state:
The decision announced on Wednesday drew a bitter reaction from Kansas politicians, who felt Boeing had betrayed commitments to the state and their efforts to help the company win a big refueling aircraft contract from the U.S. Air Force.
President Obama will announce a youth jobs program today.
President Obama will continue his campaign to bypass Congressional opposition to his jobs agenda Thursday by announcing a new partnership aimed at helping a quarter of a million young people find summer jobs.
The initiative, part of Obama's "We Can't Wait" campaign, is intended to replace a youth jobs fund that would have been enacted had Congress passed the president's $447 billion jobs bill.

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