As if those proposals were not enough to weigh the U.S. economy down, Obama plans to nearly double the top dividends and capital-gains rate from the current 15 percent rate to as high as 28 percent. Indeed, while most tax cuts may result in slight revenue declines even as they spur economic growth, Bush's dividend and capital gains tax cuts actually have increased federal revenue. Obama would be wise to reconsider these particularly destructive tax increases.
On the other hand, Obama pledges to follow President Bush in rapidly increasing the size and scope of the federal government. Bush has allowed the federal budget to grow from 18.4 percent to 20 percent of the nation's gross domestic product. Former President Bill Clinton, on the other hand, oversaw a reduction of federal spending from 22.1 percent to 18.7 percent of GDP.
Unfortunately for the U.S. economy, the likelihood of massive government expansion under Obama means that the only important "change" will be in the mechanism by which our ever-expanding government is funded.