The stance of the economy

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Meghan Harmening | Staff Writer

In the days of the economic recession, many wondered if we would ever be able to get out of the slump we were in. Would the new President Obama be able to get us out of the mess that we got ourselves into? The debate continues to go on about what is the best way to get out of an economic recession and on to a thriving economy. In 2009 when President Obama came into office, two massive stimulus packages were passed in the hopes of improving the lacking economy.

Technically, we are no longer in a recession. A recession is defined as a fall or decrease in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). However, GDP growth in the past four years has been subpar at best. This could be partly due to the fact that the debt while President Obama has been in office has increased by nearly five trillion dollars. The fact that our national debt is nearing sixteen trillion dollars should scare American citizens. It should be the top issue when voting for our president for the next four years.

If we take a look at what Obama has done with our economy, anyone could swing the numbers to make it look either bad or good depending on the eyes of the beholder. However, bias is not what we need right now. An obvious issue in America is the shrinking middle class. Over the past four years, the middle class has been battered and beaten. In America, the middle class citizens run our country because of their sheer size and numbers. Thus, taxes are going to be a huge issue for the middle class. Taxes for middle class families need to be reduced, however slightly, so the money they gain back from taxes will allow more money to be put back into the economy and the private sector.

Next, taxes on the wealthy are a tough issue to skirt around. There is no good way to tax the rich. If we tax the job creators and entrepreneurs, we hinder the private sector and job creation. If we don’t tax those in the top one percent of income earnings, you are missing out on many people who do not truly earn their money. It is tough to differentiate between the two. In order to get our national debt and deficit in check, something obviously needs to change. Moderate increases in taxes on the top one percent of income earnings paired with moderate cuts in spending is one of the only ways we, as a country, can effectively eliminate our deficit for good. However, if we can increase income taxes on the top one percent income earners along with a decrease in the corporate tax rate, we could successfully solve our economic issues.

No one wants tax increases, but things need to change. Many of us are against large changes all at once. I agree that too many changes can be a bad thing all at once, but if we wait too long, our problems (and debt) are going to continue to pile up until we are in the same position as the EuroZone and Greece. We need to take action until our issues have been dealt with.

Photo by Grace Bodey