No doubt about it. The hardest people to buy for every Christmas are your relatives, friends and neighbors who earn $1 million or more a year.
What do you get for people who already have everything they need?
Help may be on the way! Santa and 234 of his elves in the House of Representatives (all Republicans) just found the perfect gift for those mega-richies on your list – a gift that keeps on giving. Last Thursday, just in time for Christmas, the House approved extension of President Bush’s deep tax cuts on 1) dividend income and 2) capital gains –- a tax cut at a time of historic deficits that will add an estimated $56 billion to the National Debt. We all know Santa’s favorite costume color is red – apparently he also loves red ink.
According to the Tax Policy Center, run jointly by the Brookings Institution and the Urban Institute, the top 20 percent of earning households will receive 80 percent of Santa’s holiday $56 billion tax gift– households earning $1 million or more each year alone will get 40 percent of the big bucks.
One rule of gift-giving is to buy something for others that you want for yourself. In this instance, every family earning $1 million or more will receive an average of $51,000 from the rest of us. Gift wrapping the present will not, however, be a burden for us – the $51,000 will arrive as a simple refund check from the IRS, nicely wrapped in a plain white envelope.
This helps clear uo several mysteries about Santa Claus that have needled me since early childhood. First, who funds the jolly man’s gift factory at the North Pole? (Where, incidentally, the year round climate is rapidly improving for the Clauses, thanks to global warming.) Turns out it is all the little boys and girls in the land (born and yet-to-be-born) each of whom inherits at birth $26,000 in National Debt mostly incurred by recent Republican administrations’ massive tax cuts. Indeed, if Baby Jesus were born this December somewhere in the USA, at birth he would assume His $26,000 share of the National Debt, along with the $52,000 in debt Mary and Joseph took with them into the manger. No wonder they chose the Middle East.
Does Santa really climb down chimneys to deliver his gifts and what about houses and apartments with no chimneys? Turns out Santa uses the mailbox to distribute his $51,000 to every million-dollar family and forget the reindeer and sleigh. The big fat guy uses the postal service which explains how Christmas happens all around the world in one 24 hour period, through rain, sleet, snow and dark of night.
Does Santa really know when I am sleeping; know when I’m awake; know if I’ve been bad or good? Should I be good for goodness sake? The answer is yes – as a result of the Patriot Act.
Does Santa know Robin Hood? Nope. They are opposites. Robin Hood took from the rich and gave to the poor. Our Santa and his 234 elves in the House of Representatives take from the poor (and the middle class) and give to the rich.
The key to Christmas for children of all ages is the suspense – not knowing exactly what Santa will leave under the tree on Christmas morning. Turns out that there are a bunch of Scrooges in the Senate, including some Republicans, who are not certain if this year’s gift mix from Uncle Sam should include $51,000 for every family earning $1 million or more. What greater suspense than a $51,000 gift? We may not know until just before Christmas what will happen. If the past five years are any indication of the future, Santa will deliver once again.
Yes, Virginia (and all the other 49 states be they Santa red or Robin Hood blue), there is a Santa Claus and he lives at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. His fiscal policies remind all of us that it is better to give than to receive.“Merry Christmas to all and to all a good debt!”