Everyone will feel impact of ‘fiscal cliff’

Published 11:00 pm Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Just because a deal is done, doesn’t make it a good one.

So it goes with the last-minute passage of a tax package designed to keep America from tumbling over the fiscal cliff.

The compromise package renews many of the Bush era tax cuts, although extending the minimum threshold for higher rates to individuals earning $400,000 or more a year, but does little to curb spending. With roughly $45 in new tax revenue for every $1 cut from federal spending, the deal forced through by President Obama and Senate leadership is a farce.

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Moreover, most Americans are so caught up in the hype of “not raising taxes on the middle class,” they’ve overlooked the critical 2 percent increase in payroll taxes that once again took effect Jan. 1. That direct tax is passed on to each and ever wage earner, regardless of the amount of income, and will have the greatest impact on the middle class – those whose monthly budgets will feel the pinch of another $100 to $200 in taxes.

And, sadly, in another two months we’ll be watching and waiting as Congress once again tackles the real issue of curbing spending. That’s when the debt ceiling issue must be addressed and, coincidentally, when most of the sequestration cuts delayed by this week’s deal will be revisited.

Let’s hope that our president and congressional leaders find the resolve to actually deal with the critical issues before taking us to to the edge of yet another cliff.