Here’s some holiday cheer: 120 million American families no longer have to file income tax returns; the top individual rate is lowered by 20 percent; the top corporate rate is cut by more than half; the government gets the same amount of revenue; and the tax system is slightly more progressive.
The U.S. budget deficit is worse than ever. Taxes already have been raised, so efforts to narrow the shortfall should focus only on spending. The only fair deal is a straight trade: relief from the cuts under sequestration in return for reductions to entitlements. Yet there’s no incentive for Democrats to go along.
If, two years ago, reports of Timothy Geithner possibly leaving reached the White House, some advisers would have seized on them as an opportunity; President Barack Obama’s Treasury secretary got off to a very rocky start, and was considered a short-termer.