Supersonic Fiscal Free Fall
by Tim Knight
From Slope of Hope’s Sunday favorite BDI, here comes Evil Plan 93.0:
Well, my fellow Slope-a-Dopes, I’ve been hearing a lot about the dreaded “Fiscal Cliff” for quite some time now. So I decided to take a flying frog freelance free fall leap into the woefully written word abyss, to see if I could sort out for myself, when and how we would experience the coming sensational supersonic splat.
First off, let’s review what the term “Fiscal Cliff” actually means. In order to understand something it’s usually best to know exactly what it is.
This definition from About.com:
“Fiscal cliff” is the popular shorthand term used to describe the conundrum that the U.S. government will face at the end of 2012, when the terms of the Budget Control Act of 2011 are scheduled to go into effect.
Among the laws set to change at midnight on December 31, 2012, are the end of last year’s temporary payroll tax cuts (resulting in a 2% tax increase for workers), the end of certain tax breaks for businesses, shifts in the alternative minimum tax that would take a larger bite, the end of the tax cuts from 2001-2003, and the beginning of taxes related to President Obama’s health care law. At the same time, the spending cuts agreed upon as part of the debt ceiling deal of 2011 will begin to go into effect. According to Barron’s, over 1,000 government programs – including the defense budget and Medicare are in line for “deep, automatic cuts.”
Now that we are facing this self inflicted sequestration law that the U.S. Congress has imposed on itself (Budget Control Act of 2011), the Government has three basic options moving forward: