The socialist American?

A Bloomberg poll shows support for taxing the rich and spending on jobs... and tax cuts and reducing the deficit

Published December 10, 2009 6:43PM (EST)

As Bloomberg News headlines go, this one is pretty straightforward: "Americans Want Government to Spend for Jobs, Send Bill to Rich."

Does this mean Americans are by and large Keynesians... or worse, socialists?

Not really -- the truth is that Americans are a paradox. Bloomberg polling reveals that Americans support "spending on public works, investments in alternative energy or skills training for the jobless," but they also want the deficit to come down.

This might be possible if the government taxed the hell out of the rich, but Americans also support an "across-the-board" tax cut.

Newsflash: A majority of Americans want to have their cake and eat it too. And if the rich could pay for the ice cream on top, well, all the better.

By Andrew Leonard

Andrew Leonard is a staff writer at Salon. On Twitter, @koxinga21.

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