January 2, 2013

....Aaaaand WE'RE BACK!!!

It's been a rough six months or so, with an abrupt departure, a rough landing and a few other personal issues that have kept me on the sidelines. But a new year is a good time for a new start, and there's a lot to talk about going forward.

Even so, I'm still a little shaky about blogging again - understandable because of a few Internet miscues that have made things more difficult than necessary.  But a few short posts should take care of whatever jitters there are about getting back on the field, so bear with me through a few subpar ones while things get worked out.

Which brings me to today's subject: the Fiscal Cliff, or Curb, or Slope or whatever trope is in fashion these days.

Despite all the drama, it seems like President Obama got a decent deal.  The taxes will go up on the wealthiest 1 percent, a lot of important social programs get preserved, and the GOP had a big chunk taken out of its ass.  Well played, Mr. President.

But a lot of people on the left are upset with the deal - particularly the fact that the upper-income tax floor was raised from $250,000 to $450,000.  To me, that's not such a big deal: Obama got a lot in return, and lawmakers in some districts with high costs of living - House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senator Charles Schumer among them -- had pushed for a floor closer to $1 million.

And, much like the president's decision to extend the Bush tax cuts in 2010, the big picture -- extension of tax breaks for small businesses, continuation of unemployment insurance, no cuts to programs to help the poor and vulnerable -- looks like a win from where I sit.

Here's the best take I've seen so far.  There are probably more out there, but, hey, I just woke up. 

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