On MSNBC’s Morning Joe on Monday, July 25th, we took a look at revenue vs. spending over the last 10 years, illustrating the progression from a surplus in 2000 to the current deficit. It is clear that we not only need to cut spending, which is almost at 24% now (in contrast to 18% in 2000), but also increase revenue, which has decreased to 15% from close to 21% in 2000 in order to reduce the deficit in any meaningful way.
We also discussed the decrease in tax rates for the wealthiest 400 Americans over the past 15 years as a result of first the Clinton tax cuts and then the Bush tax cuts. Effective tax rates have decreased from approximately 30% in 1993 to 18% in 2008, creating an economic climate where the richest 400 Americans–making an average of $270 million in 2008–paid taxes at a lower rate than those Americans making an average of $75,000 and only slightly more than a hospital maintenance worker earning $29,000 per year. See below for the charts.
To see the first two charts explained, please see the video below: