Conservatives say they want to "bring back" the old USA, the one that existed during those decades of the twentieth century they only seem to see through a gauzy golden haze. Whatever its problems, that country was a place where Republicans and Democrats agreed on two simple principles: That the most fortunate among us should pay their fair share, and that our government must invest in the nation and its future.
When Rick Perry says he wants to bring back "the America I where I grew up," he's talking about the era when Dwight D. Eisenhower, a Republican President, built the Federal highway system. One of the reasons Eisenhower was able to do that is that the top tax rate was much higher than it is today. While today's highest marginal today is 35% and capital gains are taxed at only 15%, the highest tax bracket was 91% the year Rick Perry was born.
Whenever I talk about tax brackets I'm attacked by right-wingers who say I don't understand, that high taxes discourage job creators. They'll say things like "You hippies just don't get it! If taxes are too high rich people will stop working and investing. The Job Creators will go away!"
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