As President Ronald Reagan would say, here he goes again. It’sthe same old tune, just a different day for President Obama and hismost recent call to raise taxes on higher income earners. Youreally cannot say the rich because the Obama proposal calls forhigher taxes on households earning $250,000 or more. Obama callsthem the rich. In New York City, they would barely be consideredupper middle class.Of course, you first need to have a job in order to pay the taxes.How making working people give more money to the government — sothey have less money to put back into the economy — will helpcreate jobs is a mystery to me. Actually it’s a mystery to a lot ofpeople including the overwhelming majority of the Congress.In the 10 or so days following the president’s job speech andsubsequent details, the stock market lost almost a thousand points.That is an enormous amount of equity disappearing from portfoliosand retirement plans.Granted Europe’s ongoing economic woes were part of the reason.Nevertheless there was a time not so long ago that Europe’seconomic problems could be leveraged to the advantage of Americanfinance and manufacturing. Today, we seem unable to pull ourselves,let alone the world, out of this economic tailspin.By no means do I blame President Obama for all the world’s ills.What troubles me about his administration is its failure to come upwith anything new. They just rehash old failed policies of bothDemocratic and Republican administrations. And sadly those policeshave increased the national debt better than threefold in just thepast three years.In any event, increasing federal taxes on households earning$250,000 or more will most certainly have a negative impact on ourlocal economy. Fortunately, it appears this proposal has no chanceof passing the Republican House.
* * *Speaking of out-of-control taxes, during a recent CNN interview,the prime minister of Norway was asked what he thought of thepresident’s tax proposal. He said he could appreciate what thepresident was doing because, from his perspective, taxes were notall that high in the United States.In his country, individuals with similar earnings were taxed on orabout 50 percent. Imagine half your income going to taxes. It is nowonder that European countries like Norway with extremely hightaxes have seen a net emigration of professionals for manyyears.
* * *Here is an interesting twist on the annual Third Avenue Festival.Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis is inviting constituents to playher in ping pong at 80th Street and Third Avenue from 3 p.m. to 6p.m. at the festival on Sunday October 2. At 4 p.m., she will bejoined by State Senator Marty Golden in a match againstAssemblymember Alec Brook-Krasny and City Councilmember VincentGentile.I hear that Assemblymember Malliotakis is an excellent player. Icannot comment on the other three.It should be a lot of fun.