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Consumers Bracing for Tax Hikes from the Health Care Law
Charles Payne: Just on an individual basis, just people, forget about the companies and small businesses for a minute, the Medicare FICA Tax, Investment surtax, Cadillac Plan Tax, the Medicine Cabinet Tax, and that particular list goes on and on. This is a gigantic tax increase on virtually everyone in America.
Dagen McDowell: I guarantee you taxes will continue to go up in this country because this puppy is going to be a lot more expensive than anybody has any idea about and they are ultimately going to tax people.
Charlie Gasparino: I kind of like this ruling. The bottom line is that the Constitution allows the government to create certain programs, and certain entitlements. There is no doubt that that is constitutional. The only thing here is that you have to pay for it and Chief Justice Roberts said, "you know, you gotta pay for it." So, this is the consequence of an election. This country elected the most liberal people to run it in 2009 and, yes it was reversed in 2010, but in 2009 people, including this president who ran on the plank that he was going to create a health care mandate. And guess what, it's constitutional because it's constitutional to create these programs; you just have to pay for them.
Ben Stein: The effect is extremely negative, we don't want to have discouragement of spending, we don't want to have discouragement of investing. We are moving down the road towards Euro-socialism. Look, I can remember when they enacted Medicare, they thought it was going to cost pennies; it's rather bankrupting the whole country. The cost of this is just going to explode and there are going to have to be more and more and more taxes. We do have to take care of people, but we don't have to break all the eggs in the whole kingdom and then try to put them back in their shells in order to make a health care plan. This is a very roundabout way of doing it. Yes, Mr. Obama has the power to do it; yes, the Supreme Court has the power to say anything is constitutional that it wishes; it is just going to be a ton of money being sucked out of the system and being passed into the hands of bureaucrats and doctors.
Adam Lashinsky: Social Security is a good example. Everything you said is completely true, and yet talk about tampering with Social Security and seniors and others who are becoming seniors who are looking forward to that benefit that they paid into, will throttle you. They'll say, "don't tamper with that." I'm very optimistic about all of this, Neil, and I'm disappointed about all of your pessimism of you and all your colleagues; Regan optimism. My optimistic viewpoint on this, Neil, is that of course we have a history of government programs growing bigger than they should be, we're going to be vigilant, as the president said, we'll try to improve the law because it is not perfect. But, here's the deal: more people are going to have health insurance and that is going to be a good thing for our country, because we have an atrocious situation today regarding health insurance.
D.C. Rushing to Pass Spending Bills Ahead of Holiday Break
Dagen McDowell: Why should I be stunned by this, but it's disgusting. The rush to push this through before the holiday. Where is the urgency that our taxes are going through the roof at the end of this year? Where is the urgency to deal with that looming monstrous problem? There is none, but instead this exemplifies the fact that you give all these subsidies, whether it's on student loans, whether it's on rural airline service-once you start to take something away from somebody, whether you're sitting on the right or the left, people go bananas. It's disgusting.
Ben Stein: It's a very simple equation. Congressmen and senators have great jobs, power, prestige, everybody worshipping them, kissing their butt-they get that job and they keep it by spending our money. They don't get it and keep it by spending their money, they get it and keep it by spending our money, and that's what they do. That's how the whole system works. They spend our money and they'll keep spending it, until we go into default. I don't think it will be in my lifetime, but it might be in Dagen's, and it's going to be a horrible situation. What happens the day after default? Well, we look back and we're very angry by things like big subsidies to the rural airplane service.
Charles Payne: I agree a thousand percent on everything that Ben said, and I also love what said about the taxman getting thing. When will they start thinking about it? How about late December? The fact that they're all on one general store watching the show, maybe not. The reality is that this is gutless. This is what we get. This is called governing. This is compromise we both check off. You know what, I guess this time around it was the bullet that we wanted them to dodge. Last year, because they didn't know how to compromise, we had a terrible summer where the market fell off the rails and everyone talked double-dip recession. This may be the lesser of evils when it comes to our lawmakers.
Adam Lashinsky: You're going to look to me to say that this is somehow good, but it's not good. It's disgusting. This is what they do, they spend. Here's the optimism: democracy is messy and they're not good at compromising at this sort of thing. They're good at compromising on spending; if you scratch my back I'll scratch yours. Look, I hate it, but in fairness to them, they're going to deal with the fiscal cliff after the presidential election. I also wish they were dealing with it now, but their going to have to get political clarity before they can do that.
Charlie Gasparino: The only way this country is really going to deal with the fiscal cliff is when the markets force them to deal with it. I don't know if it's going to come to default, but at some point when they get done and are finished with the run on the Euro and they go to another country, then you look at the U.S. and the markets start reacting. That is just how this thing works, and we're heading that way. I will say one other thing. This stuff that you're talking about, there's a crisis going on in Europe. When they talk about growth measures, that's exactly the garbage they put up-all this ridiculous spending. There is nothing in Europe that's really pushing the continent towards a real pro-growth agenda. It's just that sort of stuff.
Boston Considering Selling Public Transit Station Names
Charles Payne: It's a good idea, whoever thought of it should get a pat on the back, but look they're going to spend every nickel on it, even if it's $150 million. If they brought in $150 billion, they would spend every single nickel of it and the transportation itself wouldn't get better. That's the crux of the problem in this country, it's not about the money, it's not about revenues, it's about what you do with the money and the revenues and unfortunately, public sector stuff, whether it's Amtrak or the unions, and politics.
Ben Stein: I think it's a terrible idea if you want to know the truth. These are pristine beautiful spots. Commercializing them I don't think is a good idea, but we are in severe crisis and we're going to have to raise taxes over and over and over again until everyone is driven out of the state, and only the Chumash Indians will be left.
Adam Lashinsky: I think advertising in these public places is a fantastic idea. I think privatizing large public works is a terrible idea.
Dagen McDowell: Advertising is great because either that or they're going to hike fares even more.
Charlie Gasparino: I don't care. I mean, wasn't the New York City subway privately owned at one time? And look how lousy that worked.
Health Care Winners
Charles Payne: Laboratory Corp. (LH)
Adam Lashinsky: Humana (HUM)
Ben Stein: Roche (ROG.VX)