Peter Coy's BusinessWeek cover story on the Bush tax cuts is worth reading in full, even if it doesn't break a lot of new ground on the debate. But this is interesting:

Princeton University economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, the unofficial theoretician of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party, said in an e-mail that his preference would be to let the tax cuts expire and replace them with additional aid to state and local governments, which have been forced to lay off workers and curtail social assistance because, unlike the federal government, they are required to balance their budgets. Since, as Krugman says, that's undoable in the current political climate, his second choice is to extend the cuts, as Obama wishes, but only for a limited period.

Extend and reform is my choice, too.

But when we perform major surgery on the tax code, should we think about giving the income tax some augmentations? James Surowiecki is all for it:

Someone making two hundred thousand dollars a year and someone making two hundred million dollars a year pay at similar tax rates. LeBron James and LeBron James's dentist: same difference.

This makes no sense--there's a yawning chasm between the professional and the plutocratic classes, and the tax system should reflect that. A better tax system would have more brackets, so that the super-rich pay higher rates.

Read the full stories at BusinessWeek and the New Yorker.

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