Congress Passes Tax Deal, but What's in It For You?

Congress has passed the president's tax cut bill, which will extend unemployment benefits and cut payroll taxes for one year and preserve the Bush tax cuts for two years. The total cost will come in just under $900 billion.

If you're just joining us for news about Obama's compromise on the Bush tax cuts, here's how to catch up:

-- The plan's outline is here.

-- If you don't know what to think, choose from the buffet of reactions here.

-- If you still don't know what to think, consider the alternative scenarios here.

-- For a smart argument against the tax cut deal, go here.

-- The Bush tax cuts, unemployment benefits and payroll tax cuts -- three key elements of the plan -- are explained here, here and here.

And finally, to see how much money the tax deal will save you next year, use the Washington Post calculator here.

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Derek Thompson is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where he writes about economics, labor markets, and the entertainment business.

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