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PETER S. CANELLOS

A long, strange history of Bush tax cuts

By Peter S. Canellos
December 3, 2011
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When they were first conceived, in 1999, the Bush tax cuts were meant as a gift, a sharing of the spoils from the 1990s. Government was finally running a surplus. Al Gore, anticipating the strains on Social Security and Medicare from the looming Baby Boomer retirement, advised putting the surplus in a “lock box’’ for future entitlements; Republican George W. Bush argued for giving it back to the people, like a successful corporation paying out a dividend.

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