Fuzzcharts v. Clinton on Tax Policy

Jerry Bowyer decides to take own Bill Clinton on the topic of fiscal policy:

Last Sunday on This Week with George Stephanopoulos, Bill Clinton’s core political values were put on full display … But did tax cuts for the wealthy really make things worse in the Gulf Coast? Should they be repealed, as some (including Clinton and former presidential candidate John Kerry) have suggested? To answer these questions we should take a careful look at the period of time between the current president’s first tax cut (which cut taxes for the poor and middle class but deferred tax cuts for the wealthy) and the full implementation of his tax cuts for all, which occurred in May 2003 … Comparing the Clinton/Kerry tax regime to the “Bush getting everything he wanted” tax regime reveals a tremendous difference in wealth creation and (more to the point) tax revenues.

Let’s leave aside both the pathetic attempts by Bowyer to challenge Clinton’s core values as well as his usual confusion regarding stocks (wealth) versus flows (income and tax revenues). Bowyer wants us to believe Bush’s fiscal policy has increased tax revenues with the not so subtle hint that Clinton’s 1993 tax rate increase lowered tax revenues. So let’s actually take a “careful look” at real tax revenues per capita in this graph showing inflation-adjusted revenues not including payroll contributions to Social Security indexed at unity for December 1996. It seems real per capita revenues rose dramatically during both of Clinton’s term in office but are currently only slightly higher than they were in late 1996.