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Home buyers to pay for tax break

January 3, 2012
Salem News

If you are a working American, congratulations. As a result of last week's compromise between the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives, you will be getting a small tax break for two months.

If you are planning to buy a home next year, you may not feel very good about the deal. You will be paying a substantial part of the cost of it.

Conservatives of both parties in both the Senate and House had serious reservations about President Barack Obama's proposal to extend into next year a 2 percent payroll tax cut. Here in West Virginia, that will net the average worker about $740 if the measure is continued throughout the year.

As matters stand, it has been approved for only two months - and that after an enormous amount of rancorous, often purely political controversy.

A major concern thoughtful Republicans and Democrats have about the tax cut is that it would, in effect, put more money in Americans for a few months while costing the already beleaguered Social Security program dearly in the long run.

But there were many other concerns about the Obama plan.

The deal agreed to last week has several components in addition to the two-month tax cut. The total cost of the package is estimated at $33 billion. How will that be funded? By increasing the fees federally owned mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac charge lending institutions to insure home loans.

That cost will be passed on to home buyers in one way or another. That is something Obama and liberal lawmakers would prefer you didn't consider.


Earlier this month three "whistleblowers" alerted Congress to mishandling of some bodies and cremated remains of U.S. troops killed in the Middle East.

Air Force personnel at the Dover, Del., military mortuary lost a few body parts and sent the partial cremated remains of 274 troops to a landfill, it was revealed.

Three mortuary supervisors were disciplined, the Air Force announced.

Now, however, the three whistleblowers say the Air Force retaliated against them. Attempts were made to fire one of them.

An expanded investigation of the affair has been launched. If evidence of retaliation is found, those responsible should lose their jobs. And Congress should keep an eye on the probe, to ensure a coverup does not occur.



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