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Bulls & Bears
This past week's Bulls & Bears: Gary B. Smith, TheChartman.com; Pat Dorsey, Morningstar.com; Eric Bolling, Fox Business Network; Tobin Smith, ChangeWave Research, and Mary Ann Marsh, Democratic strategist.
Pelosi Pushes for Health Care Vote; Last Thing Job Market Needs?
Eric Bolling: 70-75 percent of all jobs in the country come from small business employers. In this 1,990-page bill, we have the public option, the insurance mandate, and there is even a provision that appoints an insurance czar to dictate what amount of coverage employers will have to give their workers. This bill is going to affect 75 percent of small businesses and will ultimately hurt many of them.
Mary Ann Marsh: This is exactly what businesses need to create jobs, because they are going to receive tax credits that will allow them to hire more workers. The expansion of businesses is a great thing for the economy. Now we are going to have competition in the health care system, reducing costs for employees, meaning they will have more money to spend, save, or invest.
Tobin Smith: I don't know how anyone can call this a health care plan—it is a tax plan. One of the things they snuck in was that they are not going to index the new surtax to inflation, which means that more and more people are going to meet the surtax threshold over time. This is going to cost $900 billion and kill over 5 million jobs.
Gary B. Smith: I don't see a lot of tax cuts in this bill. I only see the marginal tax rate going to 45 percent for those businesses and individuals who make over $1 million a year. If a business is facing that heavy of a tax burden, I find it hard to believe that it is going to be hiring more workers. In addition to the surtax, there is an 8 percent surcharge on those who do not provide insurance to their employees. We all know this is really a 'Pay or Pay' situation. Higher taxes inevitably kill the economy.
Pat Dorsey: The economy is recovering, jobs are always a lagging indicator. The jobless rate always peaks way after recovery starts. Best thing to do with health care reform would be to actually reform it, rather than extending a broken system.
Are New Government Handouts Turning USA Into "U.S. of Deadbeats"?
Tobin Smith: Yes we are creating a nation of deadbeats who have learned from the federal government how to get free income, free housing, free health care and not pay a dime in taxes. What's not to like? Government is GREAT. We are creating a nation of hand out addicts where the top 5 percent of earners pay the way for the 60 percent of American households who pay little or no federal taxes but consume 95 percent of government hand outs!
Eric Bolling: Can't afford a house? Don't worry buy it and you'll get $8,000. Can't afford a car? Don't worry buy it and you'll get $4,500. You out of work? Don't worry. Take your time, relax...you'll get 99 weeks to figure it out...Who pays, you ask? Well we do! Everyone who gets up early for WORK, leaves their kids at home and earns a living. Deadbeats...uhhh yeah.
Mary Ann Marsh: The biggest deadbeats are on Wall Street. Wall Street was the first one in line with their hands out for a bailout and they took taxpayers money and ran. And what have taxpayers gotten for bailing out Wall Street? Nothing. Wall Streeter's are paying themselves big salaries and big bonuses. They aren't loaning money to businesses. They aren't renegotiating loans for homeowners. They are jacking up credit card interest rates to 30 percent. They hoarding swine flu vaccinations when there are kids and moms in lines around the country trying to get it. And Goldman Sachs made more than $100M profit per day 36 out of the 65 trading days in 3Q alone. Tax payers helped Wall Street get back on its feet. It's time to help home owners get back on their feet since Wall Street and the banks aren't. It is only fair to help folks keep their homes after they helped Wall Street keep their jobs.
Gary B. Smith: This is a stimulus to stay unemployed. When unemployment stops, people miraculously find jobs about three weeks later. This homebuyer tax credit is a $10 billion boondoggle. Why is the government getting involved in this in the first place? It is preventing home prices from settling to the right level. We have tried price controlling before and it doesn't work, but the Obama Administration is choosing to ignore history.
Pat Dorsey: Extending unemployment benefits makes sense. Homebuyer tax credit and Fannie Mae foreclosure/lease thing make less sense, because they delay the market clearing.
New Government Plan to Raise Taxes: Call It a "Tax Loan"?
Gary B. Smith: The idea that people are going to get this 'tax loan' back is as likely as there being a short line at the DMV. If you go back through history, times of prosperity were when taxes were decreased. Again, the Obama Administration is choosing to ignore history.
Mary Ann Marsh: California is in a desperate situation seeking desperate solutions. We are not going to see this happen in the rest of the country. In order to get rid of the deficit, we have to do what we did in the Clinton Administration and raise the tax rates.
Eric Bolling: This is a tax that takes money out of everyone's paycheck, and it is a regressive tax. Congress needs to cut spending instead of taxing or 'borrowing' more from people.