Don’t spend it all in one place:  Obama tells US Treasury to begin cutting taxes

US President Barack Obama ordered the US Treasury on Saturday to implement tax cuts for 95 percent of Americans, fulfilling a campaign pledge he hopes will help jolt the economy out of recession.

The tax cuts are part of a $787bn economic recovery plan passed by the Democratic-controlled Congress over Republican opposition. The aim is to put more money in the pockets of Americans and stimulate the economy by increasing consumer spending.

”I’m pleased to announce that this morning the Treasury Department began directing employers to reduce the amount of taxes withheld from paychecks, meaning that by April 1st, a typical family will begin taking home at least $65 more every month,” Mr Obama said in his weekly radio address.

”Never before in our history has a tax cut taken effect faster or gone to so many hard-working Americans,” he said.

With tens of thousands of Americans losing their jobs in the midst of a global economic meltdown, Mr Obama has said fixing the U.S. economy is his top priority. He has acknowledged that his success or failure in that will define his presidency.

I’m pleased  Reuters reminded me that the Republicans opposed the stimulus.  I don’t hear that enough, living under a rock as I do.  I will be very interested to see how often that will be repeated when the economic results of this government largesse are tallied.

Speaking of results, how much did President Bush’s tax rebate stimulate the economy?  The one that gave you a whopping $600 last year?  By the way, $65 X 12 months = $780 for the year, for those of you who didn’t understand that math would be a part of this blog.  Forget, for the moment, that tax rebates don’t stimulate the economy,  and play along.

Not too much.

Call me pessimistic, but I don’t expect to see much change this time, either, although I can always hope.  And try to cure my obsession with results.

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