The chart above comes from the New York Times, which apparently decided that it’s safe to spill the beans now: the Trump tax cut really is a tax cut for most Americans. The ironic thing about the Times article, “Face It: You (Probably) Got a Tax Cut”
is that it reveals one of the more effective anti-Trump, anti-Republican Big Lies, this one being that the 2017 tax cut was really a sham, benefiting the rich while soaking the poor. The Times, in many ways, large and small, helped sustain that lie, with the results above. What is this? Is it like the amateur magician who has to reveal how his trick was pulled off? Is it the practical jokester who has to shout “It was all a gag!” so he can see your shock? You can almost feel the Times’s metaphorical chest swell with pride as it writes,
If you’re an American taxpayer, you probably got a tax cut last year. And there’s a good chance you don’t believe it. Ever since President Trump signed the Republican-sponsored tax bill in December 2017, independent analyses have consistently found that a large majority of Americans would owe less because of the law. Preliminary data based on tax filings has shown the same. Yet as the first tax filing season under the new law wraps up on Monday, taxpayers are skeptical. A survey conducted in early April for The New York Times by the online research platform SurveyMonkey found that just 40 percent of Americans believed they had received a tax cut under the law. Just 20 percent were certain they had done so. That’s consistent with previous polls finding that most Americans felt they hadn’t gotten a tax cut, and that a large minority thought their taxes had risen — though not even one in 10 households actually got a tax increase.
The Times goes on, infuriatingly,
To a large degree, the gap between perception and reality on the tax cuts appears to flow from a sustained — and misleading — effort by liberal opponents of the law to brand it as a broad middle-class tax increase. …In convincing people that they would not benefit, “the Democrats did a very good job,” said Howard Gleckman, a senior fellow at the Tax Policy Center. “They were able to put that into the public perception, and the reality has been unable to break that perception.”
Gee, I wonder who allowed the Democrats to “put that into the public perception”? Did they send radio waves into our skulls? Program Manchurian Tax Candidates to falsely advise us?
Here’s another Times graph:
Why did so many more Republicans believe that they really got a tax cut? Maybe because more Republicans have learned not to trust news media accounts, and to assume that they are really partisan efforts to support Big Lies. I guess the Times decided that after more than a year, the misconception had done its work—helping the Democrats take back Congress, for example.
Enemy of democracy, enemy of the nation, enemy of the People.
And proud of it
Pointer: Tax Prof Blog