Obama, Romney Tax Returns Unleash Worst Political Instincts

So it would seem that President Obama and his family are experiencing downward mobility. The Obamas released their 2011 tax return today, and showed that they earned $789,674. That is a healthy income and places the president well in the top 1 percent of all earners in the United States. He and Michelle paid $162,000 in federal income tax, at a rate of just over 20 percent. That is less than what the president recently proposed as the minimum rate for the very affluent. In addition, the Obamas donated more than 20 percent of their income to various charities.

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Obama Embraces Warren Buffett’s Call for Higher Taxes on the Very Rich

At a press briefing at the White House Monday, President Obama formally announced a package revealed over the weekend to trim $3 trillion off the federal deficit over the next several years. Picking up on the theme of his recent jobs speech, Obama demanded that Congress move on the act immediately.

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Obama’s Deficit Plan Falls Short

This is becoming like the War of the Roses. President Obama advanced the needle on deficit reduction and budget negotiations by providing a new set of proposals this morning for what the White House calculates will be $3 trillion in reduced spending over the next 10 years. That follows his congressional address last week calling for additional spending and tax breaks to boost economic activity, which in turn followed months of Washington stalemate on the debt ceiling.

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Derivatives to the Rescue? How ‘Betting Against’ the U.S. Could Prevent A Default Crisis

Wednesday’s plunge in the markets signaled that the impasse over the debt ceiling ,if it continues, will eventually trigger a substantial market sell-off. That belief itself should have been a warning sign; when investors dismiss what is known as “tail risk,” only trouble ensues.

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Default Risk: Wall Street’s Shocking Debt Denial

"The United States is not going to default on any obligation. We are not a credit risk, believe me." Calm words, coming from the financial sage of Omaha, Warren Buffett, and words meant to keep the markets calm in the face of mounting hysteria in Washington over the debt ceiling and potential default of the U.S. government. This perception—that Washington may go to the wire on Aug. 2 but that in the end, sanity will prevail—is widely shared on Wall Street and on bourses throughout the world. That is almost as disturbing as the debt mania, because if Buffett and the financial community are wrong, they are wholly unprepared for the consequences.

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