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Trumpian dissonance in Ohio speech: the phantom 2018 middle-class tax cut has returned

5 min read

Trump went to Ohio today to draw attention away from what will continue to be news as his crimes catch up to him.

Remember that what Trump really wants among many other things is to kill off Social Security, so aside from actually killing off the elderly with incompetent health policy, the Treasury will get looted (again). More paying for one thing with another set of cuts like ACA erasure and the elimination of payroll taxes. The pathetic element is how Trumpists eat up the campaign rhetoric that is yet another last-minute lie to troll for votes.


  • Before RBG's memorial service has even occurred, Trump basks in “fill that seat!” chants at his rally in Swanton, Ohio 
  • Trump suggests that if Biden is elected, Cory Booker will destroy the suburbs. The racism is barely concealed. 
  • For the second straight election cycle Trump is campaigning on fake “middle-income tax cuts” 

  • “It affects virtually nobody,” Trump says of the coronavirus, which has now killed 200,000 Americans and counting 
  • “I turn on NBC w/Lester Holt, another beauty, & they start w/a hurricane, & then they went to something…I'm saying, 'First Lady, this is getting a little embarrassing…they haven't mentioned the Nobel'”- Trump whines that NBC covered a hurricane instead of his Nobel nomination 
  • “When you see them cheating on the other side. I don't say if. When. When you see them cheating with those ballots, all of those unsolicited ballots … report 'em to the authorities. The authorities are waiting and watching.” — Trump 
  • “Ulyssesius S Grant”

Will the voters get fooled again like in 2016 or will the 2018 momentum and skepticism remain.


Steve Mnuchin can’t quite bring himself to publicly say President Donald Trump’s fake middle-class tax cuts aren’t real, but he’s almost there.

The treasury secretary in an interview with Bloomberg on Tuesday declined to comment on whether the 10 percent tax cut for the middle class the president suddenly started talking about before the 2018 midterms actually exists.

“I’m not going to comment on whether it is a real thing or not a real thing,” Mnuchin said.

He said that the administration is focused on “other things,” including working with Congress on “some minor technical corrections” to the tax cut bill the GOP passed in 2017.

The phantom tax cut never existed.

Trump first floated the idea in October, telling reporters in Nevada he was working on a “very major tax cut for middle-income people” and that the White House and congressional leaders were “studying very deeply, round the clock.” The president said the cuts would be announced by November 1.…

President Trump has called for “middle-class tax cuts” in the form of rate reductions. The current structure of the tax code makes this particular policy idea difficult—the benefit of rate reductions would accrue to top earners as lower earners face reduced (or zero) income taxes.…


Broadly speaking, Democrats (or “progressives” for those who prefer ideological to partisan labels) tend to offer gloomy numbers, thereby bolstering the case for policies that would make it easier to form unions, for instance. Republicans/conservatives, with a predilection for lower taxes on businesses, investment returns, and high-income individuals, tend to champion numbers that tell a happy story about rising middle-class fortunes.

Jim Tankersley is not wrong in that description of the battle lines (which brings to mind the old saying, attributed to the economist Ronald Coase, that if you torture the data long enough, they will confess). But Tankersley himself is no bystander in this debate, either. Instead, he aligns himself rather decisively with those taking the most pessimistic view of both past and future.

Many middle-income Americans believe they are suffering, and for political purposes, that may be the most salient fact of all.

No matter how you massage the numbers, all the news ends up being grim, at least for anyone who isn’t perched atop the economic pyramid, Tankersley argues. “Nearly every serious study, regardless of methodology, confirms a devastating story about the middle class since the 1970s,” he writes. “Which is to say, they all show the American economy delivering far less for middle-class workers than it used to, and far less than those workers had grown to expect in the years after World War II.”

Without wading into this overheated debate, let me offer the view of a political historian: Whether or not members of the American middle class are objectively worse off today than they were a generation (or two) ago, many certainly believe they are. In a recent poll from NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, roughly half of Americans said it’s harder to earn a middle-class income today than it was when they were children.…

Trump whined about his Nobel Prize nomination (by RW Norwegian legislator), claimed after 200,000 deaths that COVID-19 “affects nobody”. Then there’s Fox News disinformation meant to frame Biden’s health as worse(?) than Trump’s.



— Peter Baker (@peterbakernyt) September 22, 2020


— Mediaite (@Mediaite) September 22, 2020


— David Frum (@davidfrum) September 21, 2020


— George Conway (@gtconway3d) September 22, 2020


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