I would like to thank Chris Hayes for pointing out that the phrase du jour, "fiscal cliff" is not at all a "fiscal cliff." It is another republican word-fuck, pardon my peevishness.
He pointed out that, in fact, if Congress continues to refuse to act on tax cuts and spending bills, what will actually happen will be a combination of increased taxes, a lowering of the deficit, and what we have, up until the republican party got its hands on it, referred to as "austerity."
How will it affect us plain old people? Our taxes will go up, but not so much that we will fall into despair and bankruptcy.
The rich guys, however, will see a drastic reduction in the income that they stuff in their Cayman Island mattresses. So much so that they may not be able to buy that new jet; no, actually, it won't be that much. These gazillionaires will actually be required to increase their tax rates on earnings from today's 35% to the Clinton era's 39.6%. And don't forget the non-earned income, all that money they use to play with the stock market, and only have to contribute a measly 15% of the profit to taxes. That would go up to an ungodly 20% for a hard day of not working.
The effect of these tax increases will immediately begin to slow the deficit.
And then there will be the austerity budget. If that goes on for too long, that could actually hurt us plain old people. We will lose some programs that we rely on, while the military might actually, if they really wanted to, reduce some of the wasteful spending from their budget.
That's when all that good government bullshit will hit the fan.
Because once those tax cuts go, and the austerity spending cuts happen, there will actually be real pressure on Congress by 98 percent of us, and not just the usual fat-cat lobbying groups, to reinstate the tax cuts for the middle class as well as needed programs.
Won't we be surprised by how much power we actually have in Washington when that happens!