It was Christmas week as I looked out the window ready to encounter a sight unseen. It has to be pigs flying or why in the world would New York Times writer Ross Douthat compose a story entitled, “A War Trump Won?”
Doesn’t Mr. Douthat know the left is at war with President Trump and all his ideas. The front page of the Sunday Times reports that the tax bill upends longtime perks of owning home.
They say tax breaks encourage people to get into first homes and to trade up as they get older, building a national mindset that you’re never quite middle class until you’ve qualified for a mortgage. You might recall only a few years ago, it was the federal government with the Democrat Congress’ commitment to really encourage home ownership by asking lenders not to ask if a borrower had a job, provide a down payment since inflation would kick in and increase you new homes value. And a credit history? No credit or bad credit should never stand in the way of a new home.
Now, we know that when inflation never materialized and flipping houses stopped, the market collapsed. Borrowers sent in their keys or wrecked the property. Congress responded with Dodd-Frank to punish the banks for their poor judgment. Never mind that most community banks never participated. Those that led the charge were non-banks like Countrywide and Washington Mutual. Both went under.
So how is owning a home affected by the new tax plan? Under the old plan, you could deduct the interest you pay each year on mortgage debt up to $1 million. Under the new plan you can also deduct the interest paid on mortgage debt up to $750,000. Will this change really hurt the middle class? Probably not.
The standard deduction for individuals rises to $12,000 from $6,500 and for couples from $13,000 to $24,000.
The tax that has those living in high taxes states like New York, California and New Jersey really upset is limiting property taxes and local income taxes to a maximum of $10,000. Many individuals in Manhattan used to be able to deduct $60,000 or more.
What this will force the spendthrift states and cities to live within their means and limit excessive taxes.
The big winner will be corporations that have been taxed at the highest rate in the industrial world at 35 percent. The rate drops to 21 percent. Economists predict that this change will cause foreign deposits to return to the United States and large and small companies will expand and hire many of the 95 million Americans who have given up looking for a job.
Back to Mr. Douthat’s story. Here he begins with – there is nothing more characteristic of the Trump era, with its fire hose of misinformation, scandal and hyperbole, that America and its allies recently managed to win a war that just two years ago consumed headlines and dominated political debate and helped elect Donald Trump – and something nobody seemed to notice.
What occurred is the war against the Islamic state that grew out of Obama’s inability to deal with Syria and the Bush Iraqi War. It was a foreign policy calamity for the timid Obama. This was a war we won without adding more American troops, starting a war with Russia and without huge terrorism attacks in the west.
President Trump and his advisors did what President Bush and Obama couldn’t. He won.
As Ross Douthat said, “But this is also a press failure, a case where the media is not adequately reporting and important success because it does not fit into the narrative of Trumpian disaster in which journalistic entities are all invested.” Mr. Douthat counts himself in this indictment. The story ends with credit for the destruction of the caliphate belongs where it’s due – to our soldiers and diplomats, yes, but to our President as well.
Now, on to exposing the Mueller, Comey and Rosenstein destruction of the modern day credible FBI. They are all liars, out to destroy the president.